Fake Nails: The Complete Guide


To be beautiful to the fingertips, many women’ dream… To achieve this beauty ideal, the fake nails and all the techniques of embellishment of the hands offer very good results, for a relatively moderate investment.

Want to get fake nails? Are you attracted to Nail Art? Want to wear an elegant French manicure? All the answers to your questions can be found in this guide!

Why wear fake nails?

Nowadays very popular with women, fake nails are generally used to camouflage nails eaten or damaged, or simply to approach an elegant and refined style. The hands are indeed an essential element of femininity and beautiful nails manicured immediately give a sensational effect.

For many women, it is unfortunately impossible to keep beautiful natural nails because from a certain length they crumble and split. The false nails offer a response adapted to this problem by allowing to wear nice nails smooth and long under all circumstances.

Moreover, fake nails can also help people who have the bad habit of biting their nails. The products used have indeed an unattractive taste and in view of the investment made for the installation, it is usually enough to quickly stop nail biting.

Finally, most of the amateurs of fake nails see this technique as a new way to express their personality. There are several options available: resin capsules, false nails gel, French manicure, nail art … There are different ways for all tastes!

The Different Types Of Nail Prostheses

If you often talk about fake nails in general, you should know that there are actually two types:

Capsules or extension of the nails

This first technique involves sticking preformed plastic nails onto the natural nail with an extremely powerful glue. It works very well on short nails and offers great freedom to the client to choose the length and the shape (rounded, square, etc.) desired. Once the capsule is placed, the nail technician will consolidate the fake nails thanks to the application of a UV gel for a brilliant and discreet result.

Modeling Resin Or Gel

Traditionally, the modeling of the nails was done by putting a resin (a mixture of powder and liquid) on the nail after polishing it, then modeling this resin to obtain the desired length and shape. Today, this technique is often replaced by the laying of gel nails, or more precisely by the affixing of several layers of UV gel before passing under a UV lamp. Gel nails often have a more natural effect than capsules or resin molding.

The steps of laying fake nails

No matter which technique is used, the installation of fake nails always follows the same steps, necessary for the good holding of the nails.

Nail preparation

It is important to properly prepare the nails so that the extensions adhere perfectly and that the result is as natural as possible. For this, the prosthetist will begin by disinfecting the hands and nails, pushing the cuticles, cutting the small skins around the nails, sanding the surface of the nail and filing the nail.

The actual installation

Once the first step is completed, the nails are ready to receive the extensions. However, the installation step will be different depending on the technique chosen:

  • Capsule bonding then shaping as part of a nail extension;
  • Application of a mixture of powder and liquid and then modeling as part of a nail installation in resin;
  • Application of several layers of UV gel and then drying under a UV device for a gel nail application.


After laying the fake nails, the prosthetist will be able to go to the finishing stage according to the desires of the client: laying natural varnish, French Manicure, decoration with rhinestones or stickers or Nail Art. The options are now unlimited!

Maintenance Of Fake Nails

To maintain beautiful fake nails for as long as possible, it is essential to maintain them well. The first thing to do is to make a filling according to the rhythm of regrowth of your nails. Consisting simply to file the surface of the nail and to affix new layers of gel, this filling is generally carried out every 4 to 5 weeks and you will be able to take advantage to change the color of the gel used or to opt for a French Manicure even if you had not chosen it initially.

To maintain your nails regularly at home you will also be able to use calcium-fortified cuticle oils, keratin creams and collagen for the hands, a polishing block and a top coat to regain the shine of your nails, as if you Get out of the nail. Your nails are fragile, take care of them!

Removal Of Fake Nails

To remove the fake nails, the nail technician must make a complete removal:

  • Frost and capsule coverage up to the natural nail for extensions;
  • Soaking nails in a specific acetone-based solution for resin nails;

Finally, it will deposit a thin layer of varnish in order to beautify natural nails.

Be careful, the removal is a very delicate operation because when the nails are weak because of the laying of the fake nails can get really damaged by depositing too violent. Be gentle with your nails and call a specialist when in doubt.

Laying false nails: in an institute or at home?

You can have fake nails done in an institute but also at home if one possesses the necessary equipments and that one shows a certain dexterity. The different techniques are indeed quite meticulous and can be quite complicated when one is not used to.

In the institute, you will benefit from the experience and the advice of a professional of the sector and you will have an exceptional choice of capsules, UV gels and varnishes. The nail technician can direct you on the shape and size best suited to the natural shape of your hands and will offer you very nice decorations to give an inimitable style to your nails.

The duration of a nail-making session (capsules or modeling) usually lasts 45 minutes to 1 hour or even 1h30 for the gel nail, to which you will have to add the decoration time (15 minutes for a French, To 1 hour for Nail Art). At the level of tariffs, there are large disparities according to the regions of France and the type of service envisaged. Count on average 60 € for a modeling on both hands and 45 € for a filling. Do not hesitate to contact the training centers of prosthetists who sometimes look for models and offer nail poses free or very cheap.

Which is more economical?

Posing your own nails at home is a more economical option than an institute, but noone can guarantee the best results. If there are many commercial kits available today that allow you to stick fake nails with tube glue or double-sided adhesives, you will certainly need several tests to achieve a satisfactory result.

If you want to nail your nails at home, do not forget to prepare your nails: cutting and filing nails, cuticle regrowth, application of a specific care, etc. You will also need to think about making adjustments (filing, polishing) about 3 weeks after the installation to adapt your fake nails to the growth of your natural nails.

Can Fake Nails Damage Natural Nails?

If the fake nails seduce more and more women, the medical body still wonders about the risks that they present. Most of them alert the following risks:

  • Bacterial infections;
  • Allergy to components;
  • Irritations and other dermatological problems (eczema);
  • The deterioration of natural nails (crumbling, slimming, etc.).

It is important to have these risks in mind when you decide to get fake nails and take the time to choose your prosthetist. Indeed, some professionals are milder than others when polishing the nail and use less harmful products. A good nail technician will also give you tips on how to properly care for your nails and remind you of the importance of maintaining impeccable hygiene in order to avoid infection problems.

It is important not to wear them permanently and allow time for natural nails to “breathe” and grow normally. Finally, if you have any doubt about the health of your nails, do not hesitate to consult a dermatologist.


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