How to Get the Crackle Effect With Gel

Learn how to create the crackle nails your clients are asking about using gels.

As a Young Nails Mentor, I’m always trying to find different ways to use our products. A lot of clients have been asking me lately if I would be getting any of the new crackle/shatter polishes because the effect is interesting.

But I rarely use regular polish these days, especially with all these beautiful ManiQ Color Gels.

In Australia, we have a similar technique called the “Filigree,” where we put a non-sticky base under the design work so glitter only sticks to the design.  So I adapted it a little to work with the ManiQ gels to create the crackle effect. Now I can create the crackle nails my clients are asking about in a wider variety of color and glitter combinations — and with the added longevity of a gel.

1. Prep the nail and apply Young Nails Protein Bond. Then apply an even coat of Base and cure for two minutes.

2. Apply two thin coats of Blue 101, curing for two minutes between each coat. Then apply Top and cure for two minutes.

3. Lightly remove the shine with a 240-grit combo buffer, and dust and swipe.

4. With a toothpick or thin brush, apply Green 101 in random lines to get the cracked effect. Cure for two minutes.

5. Press the glitter (Stratosphere) into the tacky layer and dust off the excess. Then apply Top and cure for two minutes.

6. Lightly remove the shine with a 240-grit combo buffer. Dust, swipe, and apply Gloss. Cure for two minutes, then wipe with ManiQ cleanse.

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A type of finishing file with a very high grit (over 800) used to polish or shine acrylic or natural nails.
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