According to Leah Pierce, an 18-year instructor, 15-year salon owner, and 11-year Soft Touch educator, here are the main differences between the industry’s most-common forms of wraps.


  • Fine-weave fabric
  • Looks invisible with the application of glue or resin
  • Is not as strong as fiberglass
  • Often used for mending natural nails


  • becomes transparent once glue or resin is applied
  • strong and flexible
  • may be used more often for creating extensions


  • thickest of the three fabrics
  • strongest of all the wraps
  • has an opaque appearance that does not disappear on the nail

Linen wraps Application

Michelle De Nicola Moeller wrap technician for 15 years and owner of Michelle’s Nails in Redondo Beach, Calif., shows how to apply linen wraps.

Step 1

Working with dry nails, push back cuticles and use a file to rough up the surface of the nail.

Step 2

Measure tips to fit each nail, and spray tips with activator. File the edge of the tips to make sure each fits properly.

Step 3

Using a medium viscosity glue, apply the tips to each fingernail in a gentle rolling motion.

Step 4

Cut the tips to the desired length. Then, file and shape the nail. Finish preparing the nail for the wrap by using a clean buffer to make sure there are no rough edges and dusting off all dust.

Step 5

Using a small nail scissors, cut the linen to fit the back edge of the nail and place over nail to make sure it will fit. Apply glue to the nail. Place the cut linen over the glue and add a little more glue over the resin.

Step 6

Holding the finger flat, put a piece of clean plastic over the linen. Using your thumbs, push the plastic down on each side and gently slide the plastic over and off of the nail.

Step 7

Holding the bottle of activator as far away as possible (about 8-10 inches), spray the nail. While the activator is curing the glue, pull gently down on the end of the linen. Apply linen to the rest of the nails, making sure to use clean plastic with each application.

Step 8

File and shape nails to the desired style and look, starting with the free edge and finishing with the top of the nail.

Step 9

Seal the nails by coating the entire topside of the nail with glue and then spraying with activator. Gently buff nails. If desired, now perform a mini manicure.

Step 10

Apply cuticle oil. Have clients wash up and pay. Then polish nails.



Either the fabric was not saturated completely with the resin, or the resin was too thick or dry before applying the activator. It is imperative that the fabric is saturated to ensure a proper bond and minimize visibility.

Lisa Marchese, The Nail Experience,  Burlington, Ontario, Canada


As with any other enhancement system, a likely cause is that the product is too thick at the cuticle, the product is touching the cuticle or skin at the lateral folds, or there was improper nail prep.

*A word to the wise: “If the wrap is showing signs of significant lifting, do not just glue it back down. This will seal in moisture and contaminants. Start over by removing lifted silk and applying a whole new wrap.”

Tina Ciesla, Blooming Nails Salon, Hoover, Ala.


The product must be spread evenly on the nail surface. There should be no spots on the nail surface that are not covered by fabric (except 1/16th of an inch at the eponychium area). Resins do not contain cross-links when they cure. The fabric creates the cross-link. If an area has no fabric, there is no cross-link.


If the nail burns while glue is drying, the activator is too close. Make sure you’re holding back at least 10 inches from the nail while spraying.


This could be caused by the wrap being applied too close to the free edge, filing with an abrasive that is too coarse or dehydration of the nail. Be sure to leave 1/16 inch between the end of fiber and the free edge, so the fiber is completely incased in resin. Use nothing more coarse than a 180-grit file on the free edge and recommend daily use of cuticle oil.


The white spots that show up in the product after application could be caused by dust on the nail plate or dust from filing between coats of resin. It may also be that the resin is too thick and does not cure properly before filing or there is too much activator applied and the resin cures too quickly. Make sure you are not filing between coats of resin, you use thin coats of it, and activator is misted once.


The most likely cause is too much resin is applied too thickly. Other causes include too much blending of the tip, use of a harsh polish remover, or too much pressure when filing or buffing. Make sure you are applying the resin in thin coats. Blend tips by using a 100-grit file before moving to a 240-grit file; use non-acetone polish remover.

Leacha Franks, Hairitage Salon, Burlington, Ky.

Chipped Natural Nail Repair with Silk Wrap

1 Tammy Gauthier, owner of The Nail Nook in Eugene, Ore., shows how to repair a chipped nail using a silk wrap.

2 Prep the nail by removing cuticle from the nail plate. Wash the whole hand with antimicrobial wash, and remove the shine from the nail by using a 600-grit abrasive.

3 Apply two thin coats of resin to the base of the nail. Spray activator. Allow it to cure. Cut the silk wrap and apply two off-set layers; place the second layer mostly over the missing portion of the natural nail.

4 Saturate the wrap by applying resin in a thin layer. After fully saturating the material, spray it with activator. Apply another coat of resin starting 1/16 inch from the cuticle. Spray with activator and repeat. Apply a third and final coat of resin to the entire nail and spray it with activator.

5 Lightly file around the cuticle area and shape the free edge. Buff the nail.

6 Polish the finished nail as desired.

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