As a well known lover of dip manicures, one could imagine the struggles I’m facing during the lockdown of the world and the closing of all nail salons.

After I decided that a do-it-yourself home removal was inevitable, I purchased press on nails as a replacement to my horribly grown out dip manicure. I took the plunge and will lead you through my steps.

Although these photos display happy focus on improving my nails’ appearance, I am going to reveal each of my mistakes in the process.

I knew I needed acetone nail polish remover. First mistake: I forgot the cotton balls, so I ditched the aluminum foil and went to the classic soaking method. Second mistake: standing up the entire time I soaked off my dip polish.

I started by filing off the top layer of my dip polish and then I filled a glass bowl with 98% acetone nail polish remover. Tip from my friend, Kelly, that worked well: heating up the nail polish remover before soaking.

I used q-tips to replace cotton balls and ended up improvising when it didn’t work effectively enough. I used disposable flossers to really get this sticky and temperamental gunk off of my nails.

Mistake here: do not try and drain your dip manicure in the sink. It will dry and harden (Tanner if you’re reading this I promise I cleaned it up).

These press on nails were intensely complicated. I’ve never tried the press on manicure method before, but I was told by my friend, Danielle, that the glue works well and she recommends this method “10/10”.

Important tip: measure the fake nails out on yours before glueing them on. If you put on the wrong size nail, it’s super tricky getting it off (because nail glue is practically super glue???). You will not be able to save it, and there are no extras per size. Also, press down when the glue dries, don’t press into your cuticle (you might slip before drying and get glue all over your hands like I did).

Cut nails down and file accordingly. Rinse your hands with warm water to get all the super glue off of your hands. Remember to moisturize after soaking in acetone for an extended period of time.

Last mistake: not making all of my nails even because I was too tired of this process by the time it was over. I filed the minimum amount and called it a night.

If you’re a gel gal, I would suggest replacing your manicure with classic polish during this quarantine, but if you’re a fan of dip, these fake nails feel like the tough mani we’re used to.

Will I switch to press on manicures from now on because the process is much cheaper? Absolutely not. I’ll be first in line when my nail salon opens back up.

-clumsy kait

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