Natural Nails

How-To: Reverse Stamping Nail Art

Give your clients the intricate nail art they want without having to draw any of the design by incorporating stamping into the service.

Give your clients the intricate nail art they want without having to draw any of the design by incorporating stamping into the service. You can even cut down application time by creating your own custom decals using a reverse stamping technique prior to the appointment. “Reverse stamping takes a little more prep time but it’s very relaxing and the end result will have your client loving the design,” says Reina Santos, a freelance nail tech with Nailing Hollywood in Los Angeles.


If you’re going to offer custom decals you can make with a stamper, Santos says planning ahead is imperative. You have to schedule time to make the decals. “You can begin to prep the stamp about 30 minutes to an hour before the service begins. Don’t prep the stamp too early, though, because the decal may dry or curl up and it won’t adhere to the nail well. If you’re encapsulating the decal, then it’s fine to prep the stamp any time before the service,” she says. “Stamping is easy and quick when you get the technique down.”

1. Apply stamping polish to your stamping plate. Scrape off the excess polish with your scraper and stamp. 


2. Apply a non-fast drying top coat over the entire image on the stamper and allow to dry. 


3. Using a thin nail art brush or a small dotting tool, start filling in your image with different colors. You can use nail polish or acrylic paint. 


4. After filling in your image, allow to dry for about five to 10 minutes. 


5. Using tweezers, gently peel off the image from the stamper. You’ve now created a custom nail decal. The reverse side is the finished image. 


6. Place your custom nail decal onto a prepped and dry nail.


7. After placing your decal onto the nail, smooth out any bubbles and trim off any excess with scissors. Use acetone and a clean-up brush to melt away any excess polish around the cuticle or side walls.


8. Seal the look with top coat.

Follow Santos on Instagram: @reireishnailart

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