How to Make Gel Nails Last Longer

by The First Refresh

Have you ever unwittingly chipped your gel nails a day after leaving the salon? Found yourself finding perverse satisfaction in peeling off your gel manicure or pedicure once it starts to lift off your nail? Or put your hands through household chores without protecting freshly painted nails?

If you said yes to any of these, your gelish manicure or pedicure has probably deteriorated before its intended lifespan. If you are ultra careful following your self-care nail appointment, your gelish manicure can in fact last up to a month, although experts don’t recommend it for nail health. (When you go out and about, UV rays from the sun continue to cure your nails so gel gets increasingly difficult to remove from the nail surface.)

Ideally, you should be getting your gel polish removed and refreshed by a professional every 14-21 days - however, many of us don’t make it to the two-week mark before the first signs of damage occur.

So how do you keep your gelish manicure and pedicure in tip-top shape in between your visits to the nail salon? Here are some essential tips to keep in mind. 

Get a pair of rubber gloves

Put them on when you are working around the home, especially when you come into contact with washing liquids and detergents that can easily erode gel polish. There’s also another benefit to keeping the hands dry - your nails tend to expand in contact with water and contract again when dry. This causes gel to lift off the nail bed or chip if this expand-contract action happens too often. 

Bonus: keeping your skin away from household detergents will also prevent premature lines on the hands! We love the Bjork & Berries Hand and Body Lotion to keep your hands smooth and supple.

Cool down the shower

Love your hot showers? It may be time to turn down the temperature a notch. Some experts believe that hot water can soften gel polish and cause premature peeling. 

Use nail oil

Applying cuticle oil all over at least once or twice a day prevents chipping and also keeps the nails moisturised and healthy.

 

Ask your nail artist if it’s okay to cure your nails a little longer

Gel nails cure and become firmer under a UV or LED light. The longer you leave your nails in there, the firmer and more hardy the gel becomes. If no other customer is waiting to take your seat, see if you can steal a few extra seconds under the drying lamp. 

Stop picking at your polish

A no-brainer that begs repeating. Manually peeling off your polish can thin down your nail as a layer of keratin gets peeled away together with the gel. This results in thinner, more brittle nails, and a vicious cycle—unhealthy nails simply give you a less lasting manicure or pedicure. It takes weeks before a full healthy nail grows out so think twice before you start peeling (again)!

Whether you apply and remove your gel polish on your own or have it regularly done by a professional, observing good nail habits will result in healthier nails in the long-run. If you’d like us to join us in your journey, book in for a pampering Nail Oasis session with a complementary foot spa for your at-home reset.