A clever spin on nail art can come from a simple craft corner border hole punch. AII global educator MaeLing Parrish explains how she spreads soak-off gels flat over a piece of plastic and pops imprints out of them with a border punch. (According to Parrish, she uses soak-off gels because they are soft and flexible and don’t crack like traditional gels when they are used with a hole punch.) Take a look at these steps and see if you can score a knockout of your own.


1. Sandwich desired color of soak-off gel between two pieces of heavy plastic.

2. Use a C-curve stick to roll the gel out. It needs to be very thin.

3. Cure from 30 seconds to one minute depending on the color. (Opaque gels might take a little longer to cure.) Gently peel off the plastic.

4. Use a border hole punch to cut out the shape.

5. Trim off any excess from the bottom.

6. Use brush-on resin to adhere the punch-out to the tip. Trim off excess. Use a file to refine the smile line.

7. Use brush-on resin to adhere the tip to the natural nail. To extend the nail bed only attach at the tips of the smile line.

8. Use tip cutters to shorten the tip. Using custom cover pink, fill the gap in between the natural nail and tip. Back-brush to create a fade halfway to the cuticle.

9. Using glitter acrylic, fade from the cuticle toward the tip and barely overlap the cover pink.

10. Cap with clear acrylic. Refine the shape and surface with a 150-grit file. Seal with gel sealer.

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