Everything you need to know about press-on nails: How to put on, remove, and take care of 'em
Nail on the head
So whether you've been learning the dance in a bid to enter TikTok stardom or you're her biggest fan, you're bound to have noticed Cardi B's latest music video, WAP, featuring Megan Thee Stallion. But it's not the dance alone that's catching everyone's attention. The video's aesthetics have everyone reeling, from prowling tigers to neon-colored costumes to her standout press-on talons. But hey, the Queen of Bling isn't the only one bringing back the pressed-on style; from short and polished styles to long coffin shapes with studded jewels, this easy DIY manicure is making a grand comeback — and for good reason. Here's everything you need to know before leaping upon the bandwagon.
What goes in a press-on nail kit?
The press-on life is easy: pick one (or ten) that you like and glue them on. Most kits usually come with extra replacements, cuticle pushers, glue and a nail file — which makes the entire process all the more convenient. And don't worry, as long as you're careful enough, they won't damage your nail beds compared to certain gel or regular manis.
Whilst some people play mix-and-match across their existing kits, others enjoy changing it up every other day to suit their aesthetic; essentially, there's really no limits to creativity with this latest accessory. Even phone accessory brand, PopSockets, seems to be jumping on the hype train with their side venture: with PopSockets Nails, you can now match your nails to the back of your phone for that perfect mirror selfie.
If you're looking for a good rundown of how to apply 'em, look no further. With this step-by-step application process, you'll be flashing those brand new digits in no time.
1. Choose the right size
The right size, for the right fit. Sounds easy enough? The experts say to measure horizontally — from the left nail groove to the right — to get a better gauge of which nail size set you should be picking. Some kits may just provide a whole set for all sizes though, if you're lucky. If you're customizing it, your nail artist might request for a vertical reference too.
2. Clean up well
Cut your nails short! You'll thank us later. Remove everything on your nails — nail polish, gel remnants, random stickers and other what-nots. Wash with mild soap, and even better, wipe your nail down with alcohol swabs after. The best nail to start with is a completely clean one.
3. Extra nail prep
Consider filing your nails to get a more natural finishing; this is especially important for those going for shorter nail press-ons. Push back your cuticles with the provided cuticle pusher or blunt end of a small stick and wala you're ready to start applying those press-ons.
4. Apply glue, press and hold.
Slap that glue on a nail, and make sure to apply it generously for longer-lasting nails. Align your press-on, hold down for 20-30 seconds and...repeat for all nails.
In just a bit, you'll have that fresh manicure set up and ready to go for up to two weeks at a time.
5. Getting it off
When you do want them off, the removal is just as important: be gentle to prevent any damage caused whilst removing the tips. Soak the nail in soap for 15 minutes and once the glue is slightly looser, you'll be able to use a blunt stick to slowly push out the nail from beneath. With slow scrubbing of your nail, you'll have a clean au-natural nail once again. Pro tip: use baby oil with soap so that it doesn't feel so dry.
So go on, get those talons on.
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