For those who enjoy keeping their nails stylish and well-groomed for a period, gel nail polish offers the perfect solution. Gel nail polish has become increasingly popular in the years due to its ability to last longer and its wide range of colours. What is gel nail polish, and how does it differ from regular nail polish? In this guide, we will explore the world of gel nail polish, discuss its advantages and application techniques, and provide you with tips and tricks to ensure your manicure stays flawless for a period.
Understanding Gel Nail Polish
Gel nail polish is a type of nail lacquer that requires UV or LED exposure for curing. Unlike air drying polishes, gel polishes need the wavelength emitted by these lamps to harden and firmly adhere to the nails. This curing process establishes a bond between the nails and the polish itself, resulting in a durable manicure that can resist chips for up to two weeks or even longer.
Distinguishing Features of Gel Nail Polish Compared to Regular Nail Polish
The primary distinction between gel nail polish and regular nail polish lies in their formulation and application procedures. Regular or traditional polishes dry through evaporation.
Typically it takes layers and some time for nail polish to fully dry. On the other hand, gel nail polish requires a curing lamp to harden and set the polish, resulting in a drying process.
Advantages of Gel Nail Polish;
Long-lasting: Gel nail polish is famous for its durability. It forms a bond with the nails, allowing it to withstand activities like typing, cleaning, and even gardening without chipping or peeling.
Vibrant Colour Options: Gel nail polishes come in a range of colours, from timeless neutrals to bold and vibrant shades. These colours often appear saturated and glossy compared to nail polish.
Quick Drying: One of the benefits of gel polish is how quickly it dries. Since it needs a UV or LED lamp for curing, there’s no risk of smudging or smearing your painted nails.
Maintenance: Gel polish maintains its shine throughout its wear time without requiring constant touch-ups or reapplication. This means you can enjoy manicured nails without the hassle of upkeep.
To achieve a gel manicure, it’s essential to follow application techniques.
These are the steps for applying gel nail polish:
Prepare your nails: Start by shaping your nails and gently pushing back the cuticles. Make sure your nails are clean and dry before moving
Apply a base coat: Put on a layer of gel base coat, ensuring you cover the nail surface and extend it slightly over the edge of each nail. This helps the gel polish adhere better and prevents it from lifting.
Cure under a lamp: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to place your nails under either a UV or LED lamp for curing. The curing time usually falls between 30 and 60 seconds per layer.
Apply the colour: Begin applying a layer of gel nail polish starting from near the cuticle area and gradually moving towards the edge of each nail. Repeat this step until you achieve your desired level of opacity, ensuring to cure each layer under the lamp. White nail polishes are much in trend. You can try them as they look with any kind of outfit you wear.
Apply a coat: Complete your manicure by adding a layer of gel coat for added shine and protection. Remember to apply it over the nail surface, including extending over the edges, and cure it under the lamp.
Remove any residue: Once you’ve cured all layers, use a lint wipe soaked in rubbing alcohol to gently remove any residue left behind on your nails after curing them with an alcohol-soaked, lint-free wipe. This step will reveal that glossy finish you desire for your gel manicure.
As you now have applied your gel manicure, it’s important to know how to maintain it. Here are some helpful tips to make your gel manicure longer;
Take care of your cuticles: Keep your cuticles moisturized to prevent dryness and maintain the health of your nails. Dry cuticles can cause the gel polish to chip or lift.
Protect against chemicals: Whenever you’re doing household chores or using cleaning products, it’s a great idea to wear gloves so that the chemicals don’t damage your gel manicure.
Treat your nails gently: Even though gel polish is quite resilient, it’s important not to use your nails as tools, as this can lead to chipping. Instead, use tools when opening cans or removing stickers.
Remove the manicure in a manner: Once you notice any lifting or growth at the base of your nails, it’s time to remove the gel manicure. Leaving it on for a long time can cause damage to your nails.
Gel nail polish is a choice if you want a long-lasting colour that stays flawless for weeks. By applying it and taking care, you can enjoy beautiful and stylish nails for an extended period of time.
Feel free to dive in and discover the array of colours, in gel nail polishes treating yourself to a world of enduring beauty.