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How to Prep Nails for Press-Ons: The Ultimate Guide

on June 06, 2024

Press-on nails are a game-changer in the beauty world, offering a quick and stylish alternative to traditional manicures. To ensure they look flawless and last as long as possible, it's essential to prepare your natural nails properly. In this guide, we'll cover everything you need to know about prepping your nails for press-ons.



Applying press-on nails can transform your look effortlessly. However, the key to a long-lasting and beautiful set of press-ons lies in the preparation of your natural nails. Proper prep ensures that your press-ons adhere well and remain intact, giving you a salon-quality finish at home. Let’s delve into the step-by-step process of how to prep your nails for press-ons.


Why Proper Nail Preparation is Crucial

Proper nail preparation is crucial for several reasons:

  • Ensures better adhesion of press-on nails
  • Prolongs the wear time
  • Prevents lifting and breakage
  • Promotes nail health by reducing damage


Gather Your Supplies

Before starting the nail prep process, gather all necessary supplies:

  • Nail polish remover
  • Cotton pads
  • Nail file and buffer
  • Cuticle pusher and nippers
  • Nail dehydrator or rubbing alcohol
  • Primer or base coat
  • Quality press-on nails from Match Nails


Necessary nail tool supplies


Remove Old Nail Polish

The first step is to remove any old nail polish:

  • Soak a cotton pad with nail polish remover.
  • Wipe each nail until all polish is removed.
  • Ensure nails are completely clean and free from any residue.


Trim and Shape Your Nails

Next, trim and shape your natural nails:

  • Use a nail clipper to trim your nails to your desired length.
  • File your nails in one direction to shape them. A slightly rounded or square shape works best for press-ons.


Buff the Nail Surface

Buffing helps create a smooth surface for the press-ons to adhere to:

  • Gently buff the surface of your nails to remove any ridges and shine.
  • Be careful not to over-buff, as this can weaken your nails.


Push Back and Trim Cuticles

Cuticle care is vital for a clean application:

  • Soak your nails in warm water for a few minutes to soften the cuticles.
  • Use a cuticle pusher to gently push back the cuticles.
  • Trim any excess cuticle skin with nippers, but avoid cutting too much to prevent infection.


Clean and Dehydrate Your Nails

Cleaning and dehydrating your nails remove oils and residue:

  • Wipe each nail with a cotton pad soaked in nail dehydrator or rubbing alcohol.
  • This step ensures the nails are free from oils, which can affect the adhesion of the press-ons.


Apply a Base Coat or Primer

Applying a base coat or primer is optional but recommended:

  • A base coat can protect your natural nails and provide a smoother surface.
  • Some people prefer using a primer designed for press-on nails to enhance adhesion.


Selecting the Right Size and Style

Choosing the right size and style of press-on nails is essential:

  • Match Nails offers a variety of styles, including fake silver nails, duckbill nails, and matte green almond nails.
  • Measure each press-on nail to ensure it fits your natural nail bed perfectly. If necessary, file the edges for a better fit.


Applying the Press-On Nails

Now it's time to apply your press-ons:

  • Apply a thin layer of nail glue to your natural nail and the press-on nail.
  • Starting from the cuticle, press the nail down firmly and hold for 10-15 seconds to ensure a secure bond.
  • Repeat for all nails, ensuring each one is firmly attached.


Finishing Touches

Once all nails are applied, finish with these steps:

  • File any rough edges to smooth the nails.
  • Apply a clear top coat for added shine and protection.


Maintenance Tips for Press-On Nails

To prolong the life of your press-on nails, follow these tips:

  • Avoid soaking your hands in water for long periods.
  • Wear gloves when doing household chores.
  • Avoid using your nails as tools to open cans or packages.


Removing Press-On Nails Safely

When it's time to remove your press-ons, do it safely to avoid damaging your natural nails:

  • Soak your nails in warm, soapy water for 10-15 minutes.
  • Gently lift the edges of the press-on nails using a cuticle pusher.
  • If necessary, use a small amount of acetone to help dissolve the glue.


Exploring Different Styles with Match Nails

Match Nails offers an extensive collection of stylish press-ons:

Fake silver nails


Pink flare nails



Fruity fun meets modern chic: Medium fruit & matte green almond nails



How long do press-on nails last?

With proper application and care, press-on nails can last up to two weeks.


Can I reuse press-on nails?

Yes, if removed carefully, press-on nails can be reused. Clean them thoroughly and store them properly for future use.


How can I prevent press-on nails from falling off?

Ensure your nails are clean, dry, and properly prepped. Avoid excessive water exposure and be gentle with your hands.


Are press-on nails safe for natural nails?

Yes, when applied and removed correctly, press-on nails are safe and cause minimal damage to natural nails.


What should I do if a press-on nail falls off?

Clean your natural nail and the press-on nail. Reapply using nail glue and hold firmly for a secure bond.


Can I paint over press-on nails?

Yes, you can paint over press-on nails with regular nail polish. Ensure the nails are clean and dry before applying polish.


Prepping your nails for press-ons is a crucial step in achieving a flawless, long-lasting manicure. By following these detailed steps, you can enjoy beautiful press-on nails that look professionally done. Explore the fantastic range of press-on nails at Match Nails, including fake silver nails, duckbill nails, and matte green almond nails, for a stylish and convenient nail makeover.

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