All good things come to an end and this, unfortunately, is also true when it comes to gel nails. So, what should you do when your gel nails have grown out? There are various options and several signs that you can look to when your gel nails start to grow out. We'll explore the signs to look for and even what can help prolong your gel nail manicure. As ever, we would always suggest going to see a professional nail technician before you do any remedial work on your gel nail manicure.
Signs that your gel nails have grown out
One thing to look for after you have had your gel nails for 2-3 weeks is a visible gap between the natural nail plate and the artificial gel layer. This gap is caused when your nails start to grow and the gel does not move with them. You may also see that the edges of the gel are lifting, a process which is known as “lifting” in the industry. What is lifting in the context of gel nails? This is when the edges of the gel layer have started to come away from the natural nail plate. Combined, these two signs are a sure way to know that your gel nails have grown out and it’s time for them to be replaced or refilled. Another sure-fire sign that your gel nails have grown out is a change in the nail shape - if your nail beds have changed shape, it is an indication that the gel has been on for too long and needs to be replaced.
Options for when your gel nails grow out
There are a few different options available when it comes to what you can do with your gel nails once they’ve grown out. Firstly instead of booking another appointment at your local nail salon straight away, why not try to incorporate the design into your natural nail plate? This is a great way to keep your gel nails looking fabulous without having to have them refilled or replaced. Alternatively, you could try a negative space manicure, which will help blend the artificial and natural nails together. Other options include classic French manicures or ombre designs - both of which can be achieved with regular nail polish rather than gel nail manicure. Of course, the other option is to visit your technician for a refill of your gel polish nails.
How long does it take for gel nails to grow out?
Gel nails typically last between 2 and 4 weeks, however, it really depends on the individual. The growth of your natural nails will determine how long your gel manicure lasts before you start to see signs that they have grown out.
Can you just grow out gel nails?
Let's revisit what 'lifting' is and some of the problems associated with it. Lifting occurs when the edges of your gel nails start to come away from the natural nail plate. If you just allow your gel nails to grow out, they can become weak and brittle as a result of being exposed to water and air, which could potentially damage your natural nails. We would always suggest that if you notice any lifting, it is best to visit your nail technician for a refill or removal, rather than letting your nails grow out. It's also important to remember that removing gel polish without the help of an experienced professional can cause damage to your natural nails. Last but not least, growing out gels improperly can also leave you susceptible to bacteria and fungal infections. Healthy nail care is key to having a beautiful manicure and beautiful nails - with or without gel.
To wrap up, there are a few signs to look out for when your gel nails start to grow out - including visible gaps and lifting at the edges. Taking care of your natural nails is important, so if you notice these signs then it might be time to visit a professional nail technician or try incorporating the design into your natural nail plate. Above all else, make sure you practice proper nail care - whatever option you choose. And, of course, if you want to learn more about gel nails (or any other nail techniques) head on over to our training section here.