Acrylics Suddenly Lifting and Have Air Bubbles.

August 17, 2011

I’ve been a nail tech for three years and have worked at a few salons. I have since opened my own salon and am now having a problem with my acrylics. I am having a lot of lifting and air bubbles in the middle of the nail. I have never had this problem before. My technique has not changed. My prep is good. I remove the cuticle, rough up the nail, and prime. I have tried a few lines of products and it’s happening with all of them. Could it be the environment of the new shop? Please help!


There is a possibility that the shop is very humid or has more moisture in the air, which could be causing your problems. But it can also be the way in which you are roughing up the natural nail. This act can easily lead to over-filing, which definitely does play a huge part in lifting, especially in the middle of the nail.

The other thing is to be careful when trying so many different products because you might get cross-contamination. Mixing products is not good and leads to service breakdown, and it can be something as simple as using Brush A with Product A then Product B at a later date without really cleaning the brush well, and all of a sudden you have cross-contamination.

Also if it’s only happening on one client then it could be the client is using her nails as tools. There are certain clients who put lots of pressure on their nails and it sometimes causes lifting. Or it could be that she is using a different soap to wash her hands, like a lanolin- or mineral oil-based soap. This can also be the cause of lifting. 

— Christy Graham is an OPI guest artist.

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How can I prevent lifting when my client's hands are constantly in water?

I have a client who is in the medical field so her hands are constantly in water. She has me keep the length of her acrylic nails short. No matter what I do, she always has at least one nail that comes off, and she always has lifting and gets water under the acrylic. I prep the nails correctly, I have a cuticle bit to clean the cuticle area, and I wipe the nail with alcohol, dehydrate the nail, and prime the nail. What should I do?

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