What’s the secret to a flawless and long-lasting set of nails? Creating a suitable foundation for your desired nail service is essential to prevent lifting, chipping, or breaking. You don’t have to be a professional nail tech to learn the basics of nail preparation.
Various other factors can contribute to the longevity of your nails, like application techniques, removal methods, and daily care. However, focusing on nail prep can ensure a strong base for nail polish, gel nails, acrylics, and other enhancements.
Why Is Nail Prep Important?
Nailsmag states, “no matter what type of nail service you’re performing, or which line of products you use, properly preparing the nail plate is paramount for artificial nails that don’t lift and for maximum polish adhesion on natural nails.”
Overall, nail prep creates an impeccable base for your following products to adhere seamlessly.
What Tools Are Required For Nail Prep?
Thankfully, nail preparation doesn’t need to be complicated, and you can invest in a simple manicure set. For example, essential tools for any nail service include files, clippers, cuticle pushers, and base coats.
However, nail enhancements like gel or acrylic may require additional equipment like bonders, nail lamps, or sculpting brushes.
Nail Prep Steps
What common nail prep practices help you achieve a flawless nail plate? Of course, you’ll want to thoroughly shape, file, and trim your nails to your ideal length. In addition, cuticle care is essential for promoting the longevity of your manicure.
Filing & Shaping
Filing and shaping can effortlessly transform your nail shape. For example, you can learn varying techniques to create a square, oval, or almond-shaped nail. Also, you can buff the nail plates to minimize any bumps and ridges, so your products apply evenly.
Filing the nail can also shorten nail enhancements like acrylic or gel nails, so they can be more manageable.
Nail extensions or enhancements can get lengthy within their 2-3 week wear time. An easier way to shorten your nails is by clipping or trimming them. A typical pair of clippers is a fundamental tool anyone can use or implement in their nail care routine.
However, to tame longer acrylic nails, you may want to invest in a tip cutter.
Cuticle Care
One step that should be implemented for every nail prep routine is cuticle care. The cuticles perform vital functions like shielding our nails against infection and bacteria. They can also prolong the wear time of our manicures with the proper care.
Trimming your cuticles can be risky and painful for beginners, so it will be wise to push them back with an orange wood stick gently. This ensures the cuticles won’t latch onto gel, acrylic, or polish and minimize the chances of irritation.
A dehydrator is a standard product used for nail enhancement services like gel or acrylic. Applying it during the prep phase is essential because it will eliminate all excess moisture from the nail plate and promote maximum adhesion.
Another popular product found in most nail prep routines is a primer. Primers are meant to add an extra layer of protection between the nail plate and your enhancement. They can also reduce moisture and prepare the nails for a base coat.
Base Coat
Base coats are usually the final step in a nail prep routine and are vital for all nail services. They create a tacky layer for polish, gel, or acrylic to adhere to and act as a protective barrier for the nail to prevent staining or damage.