I go through cycles where I consistently go to a salon and have my nails done but I get sick of the time and cost that it takes. When the pandemic hit I saw sooo many people trying to do their nails at home and I loved it! It's fun to learn a new hobby and also use it as some self care. I've done my nails at home for years and have spent time learning how to do my own acrylics, gel, dip, and builder gel. Through all of these I've got to say that builder gel is by far my favorite and one that I plan on continuing.
,Acrylic can be very messy and strong at home. And if you mess up it's a bigger hassle to fix. Dip is great but it felt more damaging to my nails and let's be real, it's a pain in the butt to remove! Gel was easy and felt less damaging, but with weightlifting I tend to still chip them and because it's my natural nail they would break more. Then enters builder gel....
photos below of natural nails with dip - I didn't like the removal process but the durability was great so I do recommend if you want to keep your color for a longer time (mine would last 6+ weeks)
I was debating between builder and poly gel but decided to go with the builder and I am so happy I did! It is so easy to use (3 step process) and the one I use is a "self leveling formula" so if you're a little heavy handed it helps even out your nail. I've been using the same set for the past 5 months and it's been great. I have done the original set and have filled and re-done old ones that needed to be completely fixed. The formula really is crystal clear so if that's the style you like just having clear tips it will be great for you!
Tips & Tricks
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This was my very first set that I did back in November of 2020! The clear on the left was right after I applied the gel using the application stickers to create my nail shape. I then filed them to even them out and just did a glitter dip for my first time. I've been doing glitter more often because it's just easier but definitely getting back into more nail art! Do you do your own nails? Would you try builder gel? Let me know in the comments!