Full disclaimer, this method is uncomplicated and inexpensive in comparison with going to a salon or mixing your own acrylic, but I can’t imagine there is any method of wearing artificial nails that is necessarily good for your real nails underneath. It’s worth saying, however, that I’ve seen significantly less damage to my nails by following this routine than when I was regularly donning heavy salon acrylics. So if you love faux nails like I do, read on and just remember to give your real nails some time to breathe in between manicures, and apply nail strengtheners when necessary.
Brand of Choice: KISS Artificial Nails
These nails come in a wide variety of colors, patterns, and shapes, which is awesome because I’m constantly looking for ways to change it up with my nails. This brand also offers lengths varying from Real Short to Long, and each set offers a selection of sizes, making it easy to find nails that match the size of your nail bed. I’ve used other brands on occasion, following the same process I always do, and the results have been good as well, so whatever brand you may prefer, here’s how to get the most out of your at home manicure:
Step One: Wash your hands
The last thing you want is to trap dirt and other unmentionables beneath your artificial nail.
Step Two: Use a cuticle pusher to gently push your cuticles back
The idea of cutting my cuticles has always revolted me, and I swear this method looks just as good.
Step Three: Gently file the surface of your nail
Nail glue is more effective on a slightly rough surface than when applied to a smooth nail, so filing your real nail just a bit increases the chances of your artificial nail staying in place.
Step Four: Choose which nails you want to use from your kit
Go for whichever sizes fit your nail beds most comfortably, as going too small can result in the nails coming off too early. Most artificial nails are labeled/sized by a number located on the inner side of the nail or a small tab on the top of the nail.
Step Five: Apply nail glue directly to your fingernail
While I love KISS Artificial Nails, I usually skip their nail glue and go for Beauty Secrets Quick Dry Nail Glue, which works a million times better and comes in packaging that keeps the glue from drying out, so it can be used over and over again, where as the small tubes that generally accompany nail kits take maybe a day or two to dry out.
Step Six: Press the artificial nail to it’s corresponding fingernail, ensuring that you’re close to your cuticle, and continue on for the remainder of your fingernails
Once you have this routine down, it becomes a fast and borderline mechanical process, and if you are a salon frequenter who’s looking to make a change, the money you save will positively astound you. If, on the other hand, you’re brand new to artificial nails, just don’t forget that nail strengtheners are your new best friend.
Have fun, and stay pretty ♥