At home dip nails
The struggle in lock down is real guys. If you've a lover of regular trips to the nail salon, then your heart is probably breaking right now watching your nails go from fab to drab!
I was a fond lover of acrylic nails and had them for more than two years. Nothing ever feels as good as a fresh set of nails,which makes me feel like I can take on the world (theoretically of course, I'm one tiny person in a huge world). The biggest thing with acrylic/gel/dip nails is there not cheap and depending on how quick your nails grow, your spending anywhere between £20-£30 every 3/4 weeks. Talking from experience my acrylic nails would need infilling every 3 weeks and no matter how many times you tell yourself, that your "going to let them grow out and stop having them" you can't, it's an addiction.
We are day 213485 of lock down and I can say that my nails have been looking fab since day one. I started my at home dip nail journey nearly a year ago and haven't looked back. My nails have always been weak and having acrylics for so long did not help them at all. Over the last year I have built up quite a collection of dip powders/liquids needed to complete my manicure at home.
The brands I have been using are Rosalind and Born Pretty. I get both of these from eBay. I started off with Rosalind and have been moving more towards Born Pretty due to quicker shipping as they are a UK seller. I have also found that some sellers of Born Pretty provide very good deals on their dip powders. My last purchase from them was buy 4 get 6 free and they have a large selection of powders which is amazing. They also have pictures showing how the colour looks over two different bases.
So... the whole process of dip nails is pretty easy to do. I am no nail technician, I have just learnt from practicing on myself and others. At first my nails didn't look fab but with practice each set gets better and better. The best thing for me is that a set of dip nails on me can last for 4-5 weeks depending whether or not I pick at them.
For your dip nails you will need:
- Base & Top coat for dip powders not a gel base & top coat.
- Activator liquid - this is normally sold with the base & top coat.
- Natural/clear dip powder - these are used to encase your natural nail and also the colour powder.
- Selection of coloured powders.
You can find all items above on eBay, search Born Pretty dip powder nails.
Ok, lets get into how to complete your at home dip manicure:
- Prep your nails. File and shape them into your desired style, push back your cuticles and remove them with cuticle scissors carefully. Buff the nail surface to remove any shine and wipe clean with a lint free wipe & some alcohol/nail vanish remover.
- Apply a thin layer of base coat and dip into either your natural/clear powder to encase your nail.
- Apply a thin layer of base coat onto your nails and dip into your colour for about 15 seconds and tap off excess powder -(I tend to start on my left hand at my pinky and work my way to my right hand pinky doing each step completely on both hands).
- If you are happy with the colour then you can apply a thin layer of base coat and dip into the clear powder to encase the nail. If the colour looks patchy or not as bright/opaque as you want, repeat the above step. Remember the more you dip the thicker the nails will get so work in thin layers.
- Apply activator to all of your nails, I tend to do two coats of activator and let this sit for around 20-30 seconds.
- Buff the nails to ensure the shape is clean, and also file/buff the surface of nail to ensure there are no bumps or lumps of powder showing. Try not to buff to nail to hard, I tend to buff from one side to the other lightly until I'm happy with how they look.
- Apply another layer of activator to all of the nails and wait 20-30 seconds. Once the time is up, wipe over them with a lint free wipe to get rid of any dust etc before you apply the top coat.
- Apply a thin layer of top coat to all of your nails. Now I have made mistakes with my top coat many times so be careful and apply in thin layers and give them 2 minutes to dry into between. You need 2 layers of top coat in order to get a high shine finish.
After the last 2 minutes are up, light touch the nails to see if they are completely dry, if there is still some tackiness to them give them another 2 minutes to dry.
The best thing about dip nails is there is no LED/UV light needed and they are strong and make your nails look fab!
- Be careful with the base coat as if you get any on your skin surrounding your nails the powder will stick to it and can make filing later on harder. If you do get some on your skin, use a cuticle stick to wipe this off before you dip your nails.
- Take your time, don't rush the process. You will get quicker each time you do them.
- Don't be too rough with your nails. Over filing them will make your nail beds sore so gentle light motions when filing.
Apologies for the long post guys but I wanted it to be as informative as possible. Below are some pictures of the products I use and an image of my current set of nails I did 4 days ago.