Chemical tip blenders can reduce filing time by as much as 50%, while reducing the risk of filing on the natural nail.

Applying the tips to nails can be one of the easiest things to do to the nails, or one of the hardest. If done right, it takes just seconds to fit a tip snugly on the natural nail, with no air bubbles or adhesive seepage.  If done wrong, it will still take just seconds to fit the tips---and several frustrating minutes cleaning up your mess on the nail, warns Vicki Peters, nail technician and NAILS Magazine Shows manager. Here, Peters provides time saving tips on applying tips--- including how to use chemical tip blenders.

Prepare the nail before applying the tip. As with any nail service, the time you spend preparing the natural nail plate returns to you twofold with a thin, smooth extension that stays on the nail until the next service.

“The natural nail needs to be shaped perfectly to fit the well area. Most tips have a softly curved well area; you don’t want to try to fit that on a squared free edge because you won’t get a tight fit, “advises Peters. “A tight fit helps eliminate the chance of air bubbles.”

Next, buff the natural nail plate with a fine-grit or disk buffer and push back the cuticle. If you’re repairing a broken nail, make sure no old product remains on the nail.

Go easy on the adhesive. “I apply sparingly an even line of adhesive on the smile line of the natural nail. Then I turn the tip upside down and put three dots of glue in the well---one on each side and one in the center. Next, I hold the well of the tip against the natural nail at a 90o angle and rock the tip down and wipe it against the natural nail to distribute the adhesive evenly. Then I immediately put it back and press it down to eliminate air bubbles,” says Peters. She says this method of applying tips prevents uneven adhesive application and adhesive from seeping out from under the tip.

Tip blenders cut your filing time and reduce the chances of damaging the natural nail. Before she tried using a chemical tip blender, Peters says she thought it was just another “miracle” product that wouldn’t live up to its promises. Now, she says she wouldn’t go back to the old way of blending tips.

To use a tip blender, brush it on from left to right across the tip seam and wait a few seconds. File gently on the seam with a medium grit file; the tip material will roll off while you’re filing. “I find it takes two applications to make the seam invisible,” says Peters.

Although the technique sounds too easy to be true, Peters says chemical tip seam blenders work quickly and leave even the nail technician wondering where the real nail ends and the tip begins.

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