Saturday, May 7, 2011

DIY: Acrylic Nails At Home - French Tips

These are some acrylic nails I did on my sister

I recently had a haul post talking about the products you will need to achieve this at home.  You'll probably need to refer to that post because I'm sure I'll be a slappy when talking about the exact names of the products.  It's been a long day!

Here's a break down of the steps:

**Prep your nails**
  1. Start with clean hands!  Remove any polish (etc) and then wash your hands.  
  2. After pushing cuticles and trimming the natural nails (I like to trim them SUPER short because I hate when you can see the natural nail behind the acrylic tip), rough up the surface of the nail with a nail file or the course side of a 4-sided buffing block. The better you rough up the nail, the better the adhesion of the acrylic.
  3. Apply the dehydrator.  I'm sure you should be really careful to get this ONLY on the nail.  You don't want to dry out your cuticles.
  4. I used a primer as well as a precaution.  I researched so many different ways to do this, and I just figured I'd do both.  It's a quick step and it's a pretty cheap product too. 
Now that your nails are prepped, apply the tips!

  1. Particularly when you're doing this on yourself, you'll want to have all the tips pre-measured out for each finger before you start gluing.  It's harder to work when you've got HUGE nails on!  Lol!  It may also be easier for you to apply the tips to the dominant hand first.  
  2. Clip the nails down to the size you want.  There's special clippers you can get for this, but they're expensive!  Like $20-$30!  I just carefully did it with regular clippers.
I bought the clear acrylic powder (and white tips), so I could apply it on the entire nail.  No need for doing the tip with white and doing the bottom with pink.   That's a more complicated step, more time consuming, more room for error... etc.  You get the idea!

**Applying the acrylic**
  1. Dip your brush in the acrylic monomer/bonder (with paper towel ready!) and dab it off on the side of your container.  I don't recommend doing this is the SAME container that the product is in. Just pour a little bit into a small glass (I used a small votive candle holder). 
  2. Dip the brush into the acrylic powder to get a pearl of product.  If it doesn't pearl, it's too wet or dry.  By the tenth nail, you'll be an expert... lol!  Don't worry!
  3. Apply a thinner coat by the cuticle and gradually get thicker toward the tip of the nail.  ALSO!  Careful not to get this on your skin.  If any of the acrylic gets on your skin and sets, it will make the nails lift very fast!  You'll only get a day or two of wear - and if you're anything like me, you'll pick at it!
**File the nails**

  1. Use your heavy duty file to square the nails off and even out the top of the nail bed.  Depending on how well you applied the acrylic, you may have really thin spots or thick spots.  It's important to look down your finger to make sure it's even.  
  2. I used a drill to finish off this step.  The drill is available at Sally Beauty Supply, but it's not cheap!
 This drill is made for doing acrylic nails, so it has bits specifically for it.

I used this one ^^^ to file down the nail bed. 

Side note: Peep these gold nails I did on myself!  :-P

This bit ^^^ is for filling nails, just as an fyi.

**Make the nails shine**
  1. I used my 4-sided buffing block and some clear top coat on her nails for the glossy top.  
I didn't know at the time, but Sally does sell a buffing board and buffing cream for this.  Don't worry, I'll buy it!  :-)  I can't speak to how well it works (obviously because I don't own it), but it might be something you want to consider if you're doing this!

Finished product:


iamfabulouslyfab said...

wow! i want one too. :/ unfortunately im so afraid to try it. lol nice nails!! oh btw i gave you an award :)

Nina Patricia @ The Adventures of Nina Patricia said...

I would love to learn this!

Sandi said...

My flindas are lookin' lovely in this post! Too bad they can't look like that all the time!

Tiffanie Smith said...

I was just looking up tips and I found this. I'm a total nail junkie, so I thought I take it up a notch Lol and I did some acrylics on myself and I think they look decent. Thanks for the tips though.

sony hd gallery said...


Candy Fowler said...


kallyfo kally said...

Interesting tutorial. I was doing french nails as and was really happy. My hands are looking so great right now.

Unknown said...

Awesome tips (excuse pun). Thanks. X

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