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There’s nothing like a new set of claws to make you feel like the highest version of yourself. I don’t know about you, but every time I get a fresh set of nails painted, I feel on top of my game (even though I definitely don’t). But all those trips to the salon can add up, especially if you go for acrylic nails and fill in once or twice a month. Each set can cost anywhere from $50 to $80, especially if you want to go crazy with designs, which means you could be spending around $1,200 to $1,900 per year. What if I told you that you could continue your manicure for a fraction of the price?
That’s right, I always do my nails with this box of $10 coffin fake nails from Amazon. Granted, I’ve spent many hours as a tween practicing line art and getting slightly ambidextrous, but you don’t need to know how to paint intricately to get salon-quality nails at home. . This box of customizable nail tips will last me about six months before I have to order again, which is a godsend, if you ask me. With nearly 15,000 five-star ratings, Amazon shoppers should agree. One buyer said: “I wish I had known to change [from acrylics] sooner and saved all that time and money!”
Buy now: $9 with coupon (originally $10); amazon.com
Ecbasket Natural Coffin False Nails are non-toxic and come in a box of 500 pieces with 10 nail sizes, so you can find your perfect fit. Another reviewer attests to this by writing: “For anyone [who] has wide thumbs, I can happily tell you they will fit you too.” This nail shape is called “coffin” because it has a square shape that tapers slightly along the edges. If that’s not your style , you can easily shape these nails after application with a nail file and turn them into an almond shape or simply reduce the length.
So now that we have our base, how can we make them feel like we just left the living room? Allow me to elaborate.
Once you’ve selected the sizes that match your nail beds, it’s time to apply. I use a pad to create a surface that the nail glue can adhere to better, then apply one to two drops of Kiss PowerFlex Maximum Speed Nail Glue to the inside of the false nail. Press firmly on your nail for about five seconds, and you have a neatly applied nail.
From there, you can paint as you wish. I tend to opt for this set of gel nail polishes from Amazon to create a natural look (or the base for a crazy look), but you can use any color that appeals to you. If you’re looking to do some nail art, you can pick up this set of six gel nail polishes from Amazon for just $21. With a base color and a bit of creativity, the design options are endless!
Don’t forget to cure your gel polish between coats. You will need a UV lamp, which is imperative for the quick-drying magic of gel polish. I’ve been using this mini lamp from Gelish for about four years; it’s my right arm when it comes to manicures.
Now that your nails are shelled and styled, it’s time to seal it all in with a gel top coat. My personal recommendation is the No-Clean Artistic Sealer, which you can find at Walmart for $18. While that might seem steep for a bottle of polish, this topcoat lasted me two years, so it’s well worth it. A coat of this thick polish will seal your look and give your new manicure a gorgeous shine that will last for weeks.
After this process, you will end up with a stylish manicure that looks like you just stepped out of the salon. Minus the bill, of course. Now, that doesn’t mean your favorite nail salon or salon is out of the picture forever – we all need to be pampered on certain days and should support local artists whenever possible. However, if you’re looking to save a little money and want to get creative with your nails, this technique can be rewarding in the end.
Snap an Instagram pic and get the compliments (especially if your DIY set is inspired by Maddy Perez from Euphoria – thanks to famed nail artist Natalie Minerva for the inspiration). With just a box of fake nails, you can get the exact look and shape you want without the high price tag. You can’t help but stare at your hands, admire your craftsmanship, and feel good about all the money you’ve just saved.