It can be very satisfying to DIY your nails. DIY nails can be as easy and affordable as salon quality. That’s why a few years ago — even before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic — I chose to leave my salon manicures behind and start doing my nails at home. Although I loved the idea of using press-ons initially, I’ve recently experimented with other DIY nail art options.
I was first interested in at-home gel manicures. Although my technique has improved with practice, I still look messy. The mani is unevenly thickened and takes days to complete compared to weeks when it was done professionally. My gel result was not satisfactory so I decided to let my nails rest and use TikTok to dip them with powdered nail polish.
What does dip powder actually mean?
If you’re unfamiliar, dip powder is a nail system that allows you to simply dip your nails into a colored powder for a long-lasting chip-free manicure — and it’s quickly become one of my favorite ways to do my own nails. Just like gel, dip powder manicures are durable for three weeks. However, dip powder manicures don’t last as long as gel manicures. These can be treated with a UV/LED lamps. Dip powder is a wonderful alternative to gel manicures. (
The typical dip powder kit includes a base adhesive and colorless or colored powders. It also contains an activator that hardens powder and a topcoat to give your nails a shiny look. Although dip powder is most often used for natural nails, it can also be used as a topcoat to protect acrylic nail tips. Apply the powder as usual. False nails tipAs usual, apply dip powder using glue. (If you’re curious, I haven’t gotten the point and doing dip-powder tips but I am working towards it.
A nail technician might recommend that you apply dip powder by brushing on your nails or using small containers or jars to spread it onto your nails. Dip your nails with the dip powder alone.
Perhaps you are thinking: “This sounds great, but how do I remove dip powder nails?”The dip powder should be soaked with Acetone just like acrylic nails. According to my experience, dip powder nails can easily be rinsed off in about 10 minutes. (
How to use a Dip Powder Nail set
Easy is the best way to create dip powder nails. The dip nail kit that I use is the best in my opinion is From NailBooThe process remains the same, regardless of the dip powder you use. These steps are what I found work best according to the instruction provided by the dip powder kits. video tutorial.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. You can clean your nails with alcohol or Acetone. You can clean under your nails with alcohol or acetone and then push the cuticles downwards using a wooden stick.
- A thin layer of base should be applied to one nail. Dip the nail immediately in the builder powder, a non-colorless dip powder often called the foundation powder. You can repeat the procedure for all 10 nails. You can remove the powder with a toothbrush. Nail brush for a fluffy look.
- Add another coat of basecoat and dip your fingers in the powder color of choice. You can repeat the same process for all 10. You can do this multiple times to create richer colors. My experience is that you can dip in both the paint/foundation and the color-dip powder once. This gives me enough color payoff. Pro Tip – Your nails should be completely covered with powder before you dip them in. The powder can be re-used if your nail appears still moist.
- Use the activator on each finger.
- Leave the activator to dry for 2-5 minutes. Use a 100/180grit buffer to smoothen the surface of your nail.
- Give your nails another coat of activator and allow them to dry for an additional two- to five minutes.
- Top coat with thin layers
The Top Tips for Dip Powder Nails at Home
When I tried DIY dip powder nails, there were many mistakes. The base layer I used was too thick, and it flooded my cuticle. The dip powder stuck to my skin, making the cuticle look bulky and unnatural. After applying thin layers, I wipe the excess powder from my bottle and then apply it to my nail. It is important to completely cover your nails with the base.
My second mistake was to apply too much polish and base. These nails looked uneven and bulky. My gel manicures are more bulky but my dip powder nails look less bulky. Here is the dip powder nail tip. For a perfect dip powder manicure, you will need to apply less than 1 layer of dip powder builder powder, and 2 layers of color dip powder. As mentioned, one layer of builder powder and two layers of color dip powder is enough to cover my nails fully — anything more than that looks too thick. (
Dip powder nails is my favourite for creating long-lasting manicures. I’ve tried several at-home techniques. It takes some time, but it’s totally worth the effort.