The whole lot You Need To Know About Gel Nail Extensions

My nail journey has been fraught. I really like the look of long nails but cannot grow them alone—so I’ve turned to press-ons, acrylics, and gel nail extensions. I ended by Julie Kandalec’s Manhattan nail atelier to learn more—and was so excited after that I sent a pic of my gorgeous hand-model-worthy mani to one in every of my best friends. She assumed the hand pic was me announcing I used to be engaged. Nope, just enthusiastic about my manicure.

Gel extensions offer you the look of long, acrylic nails (the fabric is analogous to that utilized in extensions) but are much lighter and have less risk of damaging the nail relating to removal.

What are gel extensions?

What separates gel and acrylic nails is the nail’s material. An acrylic tip is product of plastic and requires a monomer liquid and polymer powder to create the sculpted nail. In contrast, gel nail extensions are product of “a molecule called an oligomer that typically is available in a pot and is the consistency of honey,” says celebrity nail artist Julie Kandalec. “Gel extensions are created when the hard or semi-hard gel is sculpted, cured, after which shaped so as to add length and strength to the nail.”

Gel nails are a healthier alternative to acrylic nails, adds freelance nail artist Trenna Seney. And when you may be tempted to channel your inner nail artist, Seney recommends resisting the urge to do gel extensions. As an alternative, please seek knowledgeable like Kandalec or herself. Here’s a guide to every little thing it is advisable to find out about gel extensions.

Are there different sorts of gel extensions?

There are two basic types: hard gel and soft gel. In brief, hard gels are non-porous, making them acetone-resistant. “These enhancements are powerful and could be worn long and filed into different shapes like coffin, stiletto, and ballerina,” Kandalec says. Soft gels (like classic gel polish) are porous. That’s why they could be soaked off with acetone—but can’t be made into extensions. A semi-hard gel is a tough enough hybrid to be made into extensions but may also be soaked off (it just takes longer).

How long do gel nail extensions last?

“Most clients that wear gel extensions go two to 4 weeks between appointments,” says Kandalec, who uses the CND Plexigel on her clients. “They are available in for a ‘fill’ to rebalance the nail. This is significant since it re-positions where the strongest a part of the nail is to stop damage from the tip being too heavy.”

How are gel extensions applied?

After the nails have been calmly prepped for the extension application.


  • Step 1: Prep the nails. The nail tech will file the client’s nails, push cuticles back, trim dead cuticles, and buff nails. The nails should be clean (and dry) before application.
  • Step 2: After the tech applies a bonder for longevity, they are going to place a tip or paper form to get the form and length, after which construct up the gel atop that to create the specified length and shape.
  • Step 3: The nail is cured between each layer of gel.
  • Step 4: Once the set is totally built, it’s filed further to the right shape.
  • Step 5: The gel extensions can either be left as is or painted.
  • Step 6: Finish with a top coat for an ultra-glossy shine that lasts weeks.

    gel extensions

    Immediately after ending.


    What is the aftercare like for gel extensions?

    It is vital to let your natural nails get some oxygen between extension sets. Each agree that cuticle hydration, in the shape of great oil, is vital.

    How do you remove gel extensions?

    If you may have hard or semi-hard gel extensions on, knowledgeable must remove your set. “First, the enhancement is gently filed right down to about 10-15% of its thickness, avoiding filing the natural nail,” Kandalec says. “The remaining is soaked off by saturating a small piece of cotton in pure acetone and wrapped in foil. After about 15-20 minutes, the rest will flake away, forsaking a healthy nail.”

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