How-To: Reverse Stamping Nail Art

by Sigourney Nuñez | February 25, 2016

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

Nail tech Melba Mosley demonstrates reflexology techniques on colleague Apryl Moore, while...


Foot Forward Summit 2019

by Staff

NAILS' second Foot Forward Summit was held in Atlanta August 11-13. Nail techs gathered for speaker presentations, advanced education, and networking.

Nails by Tracey Lee


Up Your Acrylic Skills: Mix Ratio

by Tracey Lee

Even though mix ratio is fundamental to learning about liquid-and-powder acrylic application, it’s still one of the biggest challenges for nail professionals in the salon. The performance and longevity of our product is hugely affected by an incorrect mix ratio.

Find out why over 400,000 subscribers love our newsletters

What's The Difference? Clarifying Commonly Confused Nail Terms


What's The Difference? Clarifying Commonly Confused Nail Terms

by Holly Schippers

You probably know the essential differences between the products and nails terms you use in the salon every day — like soft gel versus hard or LED light versus UV. But could you provide a clear explanation to a curious client? And what about those fuzzy terms that can mean different things to different people? Here's a terminology "cheat sheet" we hope will help keep us all on the same page.


In our video section, watch salon professionals in action, listen to the advice of salon business experts, and tour inside the world’s top salons.

Load More