How To Do A Gel Overlay

Freshly polished nails that are long and strong are what makes any fashion-forward woman long to go to salons. We would rather spend hours just to have the nails that we can flaunt for some time than expose natural nails. The sheer shine of those incredible pigments — some of which are out of this world, on the nails is just what turns on trendy women, just like you. With a gel polish alternative, you can even wear your nails longer than with a regular polish. This gel pigment coating makes the nails so strong with each application. They can even be used as an overlay on natural nails.

If you find it difficult to keep your nails longer than you would like to, you can keep your natural nails and apply a gel overlay to strengthen your nails. Not only will this enhance the look of your nails, but it will also strengthen them by acting as a protective shield to keep those nails from breaking or chipping. A suggestion for you when you find it difficult to buy instruments and nail polish for nail gel, choose a set of best nail starter kits, it is full of tools needed for you.

But how do you do a gel overlay?

Doing a gel overlay is easier than you think. Anyone who understands the basics to nail care will be able to do it without any problem. As long as you follow the instructions to the tee, you will have a perfectly overlaid nails with a gel polish. You only need the basic tools used for a manicure or a pedicure to do a gel overlay.

Once you have your basic necessities, you can enjoy months of strong and long-wearing gel overlay whenever you need to. All you need are the following: gel nail files, a buffer,  a primer, a base gel, and a gel top coat.

This is a simple guide in doing a gel overlay. There is no need for a lot of tricks as this is an easy process that you can finish in less than an hour. This will work with anyone even if you don’t really know much about gel overlays.

Preparing the nail surface

Just like a regular manicure, you need to have a clean surface to start with. Dip a cotton ball or cotton pad in an acetone-free nail polish remover to clean your nails. If there is an old polish on it, it can easily be removed with the nail polish remover (of course, depending on the type of nail coating that you use on your nails, If it’s too hard, use a nail drill to remove it). For natural nails, a gentle rub on the nails with the acetone-soaked cotton pad will be enough to remove any oil or dirt on the nail surface.

You will then need to give the nail a slight buff to remove the shine on it. Once all of your nails are thoroughly cleaned, trim and file the edges of the nails. Let them take a shape that will accentuate or match your fingers. Once you are done with filing, buffing, shaping and cleaning your nails, you are now ready to proceed to the next step.

Applying the primer

A gel bonder or primer is a professional gel nail adhesion enhancement solution that is designed to make a deeper bond between the gel polish and the bonder or the primer. It makes it easier to apply gel polish to soft and problematic nails. Most of the time, this gel matching product is included in the gel set that you will buy. Remember to apply a thin layer of the product on each nail and let it dry thoroughly before proceeding to the next procedure.

Applying the gel overlay

With the nails properly set (cleaned and with a primer or a bonder), you can now apply a thin layer of the gel base coat. It applies just like a regular nail polish. Just make sure that the product will not touch your skin before you cure it under the lamp. Remove any excess gel with  a wood stick before curing it under the UV/LED nail lamp light for about 60 seconds or as indicated in the instruction on the product label.

Adding a second layer of gel will give a more solid look. It will take a little more time and work, however. Again, you will need to apply only a thin layer of the gel on your nail. Then swipe down the center of your nail (from the nail bed to the nail tip). There are many gel brands that are self-leveling, so you won’t have any problem having an even finish. But you will still have to let the gel settle for a couple of seconds on your nails before placing them under the lamp to cure

If it is your first time doing a gel overlay, do not panic. It may not look perfect at your first try, but you can always use a gel file to shape the gel nail to how you want it to look. Just make sure that you won’t file down right into your natural nails as this may just damage or harm the surface of your nail.

Once you think that everything looks good, you may proceed to clean your nails with an acetone-free nail polish remover then apply the gel color of your choosing. You can also skip this step if you would rather have a more natural look on your nails.

Applying the gel top coat

Just like when you apply the other gel matching nail products, all you need is a thin layer of the gel top coat to cover and seal the gel overlay. Cap the free edges of your nails before curing them under the light. If there is any sticky portion on the nails, just remove them with a buffer using a light and gentle movement.

For naturally long-looking nails, you can always do a gel overlay. You may also want to experiment with colors and use one that fits your mood. Another good thing with a gel overlay is that you can use any nail polish that you have and apply it over the gel overlay and you will have the same finish.

Now you will have great looking gel overlays that you can do even at the comfort of your home.

How do you do your nails? Share your thoughts in the comments’ section below.