With the stay-at-home orders and nail salons closed, I’ve had to do my own manicures and paint my nails for over a month now. I always opt for gel nail polish over traditional lacquers because they last way longer and can withstand daily wear and tear without chipping. Gel polish also requires no drying time, so you can get back to your normal activities as soon as you’re done. Fortunately, giving yourself a gel mani and removing them is easier than it sounds. There are so many at-home kits that you can buy now to get the same results as you would in a nail salon. Below are my favorite products to achieve a professional-looking gel manicure at home.
What you need…
1. Gel UV Lamp
2. Nail Block
3. Base Coat + Top Coat Set
4. Gel Polish
5. Gel Polish
1. First, trim your nails so they’re all equal lengths. Then file and buff them out to smooth out any rough edges.
2. Apply the base coat, and place your hand under the UV lamp for up to 30 seconds. Most UV lamps have preset time control so you’ll know exactly when to take your hands out.
3. Next, paint your nails and place them under the UV lamp. I find that two coats are sufficient to achieve a nice, opaque color. Just remember to place your hand under the lamp between each coat.
4. Finally, apply the top coat and place it under the UV lamp for the last time.
5. To finish off the gel manicure, I like to add a few drops of cuticle oil to keep them hydrated.
Removing gel polish…
1. Gel Polish Remover
2. Nail Sticks
Although I love gel polishes, they can be stubborn and tricky to remove. I’ve tried several kinds of remover but this one works best. You just need to brushed it on, wait a minute or two, and the gel polish will begin to release from the nail.
If necessary, I’ll use these nail sticks to get under any remaining spots and gently push them off. Just remember to dispose them after each use.