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It's all about the Prep

It's all about the Prep

*Some links and photos in this blog post may contain Amazon commissioned links. If you choose to make a purchase I may earn a small commission from qualified sales.

In the world of nail enhancements, the secret to achieving stunning, long-lasting results lies in the meticulous art of nail preparation. While it's easy to get caught up in choosing exciting colors and designs, preparing your nails properly is the key to success. In this blog post, we will explore the essential steps that should never be skipped, and we invite you to watch our prep videos to see the process in action!

Step 1: Bid Farewell to Dead and Excess Cuticles

The first step in your journey to nail enhancement perfection is ensuring your nail canvas is clean and ready. Dead and excess cuticles can mar the appearance of your nails and interfere with the application process. Push back your cuticles and use a cuticle remover or nipper to eliminate surplus skin. Use a soft wooden pusher for this process of pushing back and gently scraping the dead cuticle. Avoid trimming too close to the nail bed to prevent damage or infection. This initial step paves the way for a polished and uniform look.

Try our wooden pushers for a gentle prep:

Step 2: Shine No More - Buff Your Natural Nails

The next step is to give your natural nails the attention they deserve. Buffing is a fundamental part of the process as it eliminates the natural shine and creates a rough texture on the nail's surface. This texture is essential for superior adhesion, ensuring your enhancements won't lift or chip prematurely. Utilize a fine-grit buffer and gently buff each nail back and forth until the shine is completely gone. Keep in mind that moderation is key; over-buffing can weaken your nails. I use our nail file on the 180 side to do this gently. It has a sponge structure so it is softer than a hard nail file.

Step 3: Cleanse with Alcohol for Oil-Free Nails

Cleanliness is the foundation of successful nail enhancements. Any oils or residue on the nail plate can disrupt the bonding process, leading to subpar results. Combat this issue by using isopropyl alcohol to thoroughly cleanse the nail plate. This step guarantees a pristine surface for your enhancements to adhere to, maximizing their strength and durability.

99% Isopropyl Alcohol is my go to and if you are serious about doing nails professionally or a professional DIY nail users then it is a must on your nail desk along with 100% Acetone. Grab them on Amazon here:

  • *Amazon Affiliate Commissioned link

Step 4: The Perfect Fit for Nail Tips

If you opt for nail tips, ensuring they fit properly before application is crucial. A proper fit is not just about aesthetics; it also influences comfort and longevity. Each tip should snugly match your nail shape, with no gaps or overhangs. If needed, trim and shape the tips to achieve a seamless fit. This step is the linchpin for a flawless and professional final result.

By diligently following these essential preparation steps, you set the stage for nail enhancements that not only look breathtaking but also endure the test of time. A solid foundation ensures your nail art remains intact, allowing you to confidently showcase your manicure.

Don't forget! Removal is also usually a major part of Prep if you already have nail enhancements on. See our product recommendations below for removal and prep work depending on your skill level.

Practice is key to mastery, so don't hesitate to watch prep videos and seek guidance from experienced professionals. With dedication and time, you'll become a pro at nail enhancements, crafting beautiful designs that captivate and endure. So, embark on your journey to nail perfection through meticulous preparation – your canvases await transformation! 💅✨


Beginner Non Efile Prep tools:

  • Our Wooden Pushers, Painted Desert 150/180 grit nail files (Use these the 180 side to gently exfoliate dry or dead skin)
    • Additional tools you may consider:
      • Cuticle Nippers. Be very cautious and only nip dead skin!

Prep and Removal Tools for Nail students, Beginner Nail Techs, and Advance Professional Home Nail DIYers:

  • I suggest a moderate priced, yet high quality, electric nail file, that performs well with moderate use. Remember you will be working on your skin and clients more than a few times a week. You want a machine that is powerful but has very low vibration. For cuticle work make sure you are using high quality diamond nail bits. I prefer KMIZ or Staleks.
    • This is the Melody Susie Efile I recommend at a moderate price point. I have used this efile for a few years and it still runs excellent. It was a back up efile in my salon when my (very expesive) efile was in repair. I continue to use it when my other file needs a charge:
    • *Amazon Affiliate Commissioned link
    • beginner nail tech efile nail drill
  • If you only plan to prep the skin for minor exfoliation you could use a rechargable cordless handheld machine. We used to sell one but we are sold out on the USA site. I found this one here on Amazon (remember I do not recomend this type of file for work on the NAIL PLATE. You could do MINOR removals of gel extensions once a month, and prep of gel nail tips for press on nail making/ cleaning up of glue inside used press on nails:
    • *Amazon Affiliate Commissioned link
    • Nail efile drill cordless gelx gel extensions
  • As a professional nail tech working on multiple clients a day having a more advance efile is imperative. Here is a pro - recommendation:
    • *Amazon Affiliate Commissioned link