Smiles Come in All Shapes and Sizes

by NLS Staff | March 1, 2010

When it comes to that happiest part of the nail we all know and love, there’s no one right way to make it perfect. Smile lines can adapt to the nail to complement the shape and design of the nail. Akzentz educator Gina Silvestro of Gel Essentials in Cranston, R.I., shows her ideal smile lines for several different nail shapes.


Here are tips on swiping that perfect smile line:

Begin by placing your brush in the center of the nail, lining up the side of the brush to where you want the center of the smile line to be.


Keeping the brush handle in place, slowly twist the brush to bring the edge of the bristles up to the side in one slow controlled motion.


Place the brush in the opposite direction in the center, once again lining up the edge to the center of the smile line. Repeat the twist up to the other side. Be sure to use the edge of the brush for a crisp line, if you use the tip it may fan out and the bristles will cause a feathery, blurry look.



For stilettos, which are long and sleek-looking nails, I prefer a nice deep smile line. (For a more dramatic look you could have it come to a point like the stiletto tip.)


The smile line for a square nail can vary. Some ­people prefer a very deep smile line while others like it very flat. I usually create a moderate smile line that mirrors the shape at the cuticle area.


For a squoval nail the smile line can be less ­dramatic and mirror the shape of the tip.


An almond/oval shape looks best with a deep smile line.


For round nails I prefer a more discreet French look, keeping the white thinner and following the shape of the tip.

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.


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.

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.

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