How to Apply Gel Nails

Written by ehow fashion, style & personal care editor
  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Share
  • Email

Gel nails are a new, more natural substitute for acrylic nails, and they don't cause any harm to your natural nails. Gel nails lift less than acrylic nails and dry almost instantly. You can even them to help grow your natural nails when you use them as a base coat to strengthen your real nails.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Primer
  • Gel nail powder
  • Nail file
  • Heat lamp

Show MoreHide


  1. 1

    Buff the top of your nails to remove any natural shine you have. Apply a coat of primer and allow it to dry all the way.

  2. 2

    Brush a thin layer of nail gel onto your nail using the brush that comes with the gel. Use the same motion you would if you were putting on nail polish, brushing from your cuticle to the end of your nail.

  3. 3

    Place your hand under the light for 1 to 3 minutes until the gel has dried.

  4. 4

    Add a second coat of gel to your nails. This time, allow a bead of gel to form on your nail and slowly spread it out over your whole nail. Place your hand back under the light to allow it to dry.

  5. 5

    Repeat the application for a third time. Allow the gel to go on slowly to for a gel-like consistency. Put your hand back under the light a final time to allow it to dry.

  6. 6

    File your nails to attain the shape you want.

Tips and warnings

  • It sounds easy to apply gel nails but it really isn't. For the first few times it is recommended that you allow a professional do it until you get the hang of it.
  • Don't let the gel touch your skin or your nails will start to lift later on.

Don't Miss

  • All types
  • Articles
  • Slideshows
  • Videos
  • Most relevant
  • Most popular
  • Most recent

No articles available

No slideshows available

No videos available

By using the site, you consent to the use of cookies. For more information, please see our Cookie policy.