I’ll be the first to admit that I feel more put together when I have my nails done. However, I’ll also be the first to admit that the damage is less than desirable. Not to mention the price of getting your nails done every 2 weeks! They file your nails down to create a rough base for the acrylic to stick to, and once you remove the nail, you’re left with rough, uneven natural nails.
I’ve recently started experimenting with doing my own acrylics at home, but even those leave my natural nails in a mess. So now my favorite way to do my nails is with glue on plastic tips. I’ve created a short tutorial here so you can create acrylic-looking fake nails at home that last! The damage is very minimal and is reversible within just a couple days. It’s a very inexpensive method allowing me to change the color as often as I’d like!
Everything you’ll need is available at Walmart, Target, or anywhere that sells beauty supplies.
- Glue on nails
- Brush on glue (recommended)
- File and/or buffer
- Base AND top coat
- Nail polish (any brand will work)
- Nail polish remover (one which contains acetone works best but isn’t necessary)
- Cotton swabs and cotton pad
- Nail clippers (I prefer guillotine clippers but any will work!)
2.) Finding the Best Fit
The key to creating salon quality nails is making sure the nail matches the shape and size of your natural nails. I use the Kiss Full Cover Nails in the short length.
Start by trying different nail sizes on each finger and then laying the one that fits best to the side.
After finding the size, you can choose to either shorten the nail now you after gluing the nail on. I prefer to glue the nail and then cut to my desired length.
3.) Gluing and Shaping the Nails
The plastic nail tips have rough edges and a little plastic piece on the end that needs to be filed once glued on your finger. If you decide to shorten the nail, you will cut the plastic piece off but you will still need to file the rough edge away.
I take my file and start on the bottom edge by the cuticle and flatten the nail, this will prevent lifting from the bottom. Next, if needed, shape the edges. Lastly, file the top away and downward to create a rounded end that will allow the polish to go on smoothly.
You can file your nails to create any shape desired
The possibilities are endless!
If you go to a salon, you know they always begin with a base coat. This is the not-so-secret secret to making your polish last. Even the more inexpensive brands of colored nail polish can last if paired with a good base coat and top coat.
Pro-Fx Sticky Base Coat & Supreme Gel Top Coat – available at the drugstore for $6.99-$8.99
After your base coat, you can choose any color you’d like. I almost always use more than one color to create an even more “salon manicure” appearance. To prevent chipping and lifting, coat the nail evenly and go as close to the edge as possible. If you get a little on your skin, don’t worry! I will show you how to clean this up at the end. 😉
These are the brands I used for this specific manicure:
This specific color was a glossy box exclusive, but they do sell a very similar color in stores. The other polishes are available at the drugstore. 😊
After 2 coats, or until a nice even cover is achieved, allow the polish to dry enough so that you can finish with a top coat without smearing the color.
After you’ve painted your nails and they have had time to dry, you can clean up the edges and under the nail tip using a cotton swab and cotton pad (I use a cotton pad opposed to a cotton ball so I don’t end up with fuzz everywhere!)
You can paint the nails before you put them on so you don’t have to wait for the polish to dry! I use a pair of tweezers to hold the bottom of the nail and paint up to the end of the tweezers. Then once the paint has dried on the end I painted, I hold the nail on the other end and paint the small unpainted portion. This is also great for designs because you can let the paint dry fully and do other things while it dries!
I’d love to see if you’ve tried this technique! As always, I’m open to your suggestions! Much love. 💋