Beginner's Guide to Gel Nail Extensions: All You Need to Know

Soft gel extension tips are a game-changer in the world of nail extensions. If acrylics aren't your cup of tea, then soft gel tips offer a safer, healthier option. In this guide, we'll cover everything you need to know about soft gel extension tips.

What Are Soft Gel Nail Extensions?

Soft gel nail extensions are a hybrid of press-on nails and gel polish. These extensions are often made of a similar material as gel polishes but are pre-shaped as nail tips that are attached to your natural nails. Unlike acrylics that use harsh chemicals, soft gel tips are safe and healthier for your nails.


Soft Gel vs. Acrylics: How Do They Compare?

When it comes to nail extensions, the debate between soft gel and acrylics is a common one. Understanding the differences and similarities between these two options is crucial for making an informed decision. In terms of longevity, acrylics tend to outlast soft gel extensions. However, soft gel tips are generally more durable and flexible, making them less prone to breaking. In terms of application, acrylics require a mix of liquid monomer and powdered polymer that creates a chemical reaction to harden. On the other hand, soft gel extensions use a gel that is cured under a UV or LED lamp. Both options have their pros and cons, and it ultimately comes down to personal preference and the desired outcome.


How Are Soft Gel Nail Extensions Applied?


Applying soft gel nail extensions requires a specific process that differs from acrylics. The first step is preparing the nails by pushing back cuticles and gently buffing the surface, creating a smooth base. Next, nail tips are chosen to fit the natural nail bed, avoiding any excess trimming. Bonder and primer are then applied to dehydrate the nail, promoting better adhesion, and reduce lifting. The soft gel builder is then applied over the nail tips, followed by a curing process under a LED or UV lamp. Finally, the nails are shaped to the desired length and smoothness. This process requires precision and patience, but when done correctly, it can create a beautiful and long-lasting result that your clients will love.


How Can Soft Gel Nail Extensions Be Removed?


When the time comes to remove soft gel nail extensions, it's important to do it properly to avoid any damage to the natural nails. One common method is to lightly file the top layer of the gel to break the seal and expose the nail underneath. Then, cotton balls soaked in acetone are applied to the nails and wrapped with aluminum foil to create a barrier and hold the acetone in place. After about 10-15 minutes, the foil wraps are removed, and any remaining gel can be gently removed using a cuticle pusher or a wooden stick. It's crucial to be gentle during this process to prevent scraping or damaging the natural nails. Finally, moisturize the nails and cuticles with oil or lotion to replenish any moisture lost during the removal process. Following these steps will ensure a proper and safe removal of soft gel extensions, leaving the nails ready for a new application if desired.