How To Apply Perfect Dark Gel Polish

Bold and deep colours are striking and beautiful but can be quite unforgiving when it comes to application. One wrong move and it's hard to achieve that crisp finish, specifically around the cuticles. 

Which is why we asked our super talented HONA nail tech, Damon, to create a step-by-step nail art tutorial on how to nail black or dark colour sets, as well as a black French manicure.

For this tutorial you'll just need your favourite dark colours like:

And a 12mm Long Liner Brush

Video Transcript

Hey everyone, my name is Damon and today we're going through some tips and tricks on how to get a really flawless dark gel application. You want to make sure that you are wiping over with a cleanser to remove all traces of dust and debris. If you get any caught up in the gel, it's gonna cause havoc with the whole application let your client know that they need to keep really stiff for this part of the service which means no phones.

I keep these little cotton sticks soaked and acetone next to me in case I make any mistakes along the way. I thought I'd use black in today's video because what other colour’s harder than black, I start just under the cuticle to get some colour then I'll play once I've done that, then we can go in and nudge it up and make an airbrush really flat so it creates a perfect line against the cuticle. Once I've done the middle I work from left to right, again, nudging, just moving the product not adding any more and then putting it down so not leaving loads of product towards the cuticle. how wide the clients natural nails will depend on how hard I push the brush and say I’m doing someone's thumbs,I would push a lot harder to spread the brush out a lot more. Whereas if I'm doing someone's little fingers, I will press down a lot more densely once you've done that I move on to the sides, where I will use my finger and pull back the sidewall very gently just so I can get right in there with my brush, use a light but constant pressure and pull straight down towards the free edge. Repeating on the other side again pull him back with my finger so I can get right in there really close using the rest of the product we are going to finish off the application and cap the free edge.

Before curing we're gonna see if we get any closer to the cuticle, I reckon I could go a little bit closer. So I'm going to use a 12-millimetre brush from HONA and a very small amount of product just to go round and fill in any gaps I can see it doesn't always necessarily need this but if you feel like you can get a bit closer without actually fed in a cute score then go for it. I'm gonna go back in for a second coat literally repeating the process. This is when you can go in a spot check any areas that need a little bit more product, or if there's any bits and missed the first time this is when you can do it. You want to work in quite thin layers especially when using dark colours. So I tend to do two really thin layers just to make sure everyone's covered and everything's fully cured. Once you have cut the free edge this is your application pretty much done so you can go and cure and then topcoat.

I'm just going to show you how you can use a detail paint for full coverage nail colour. They are a lot thicker consistency which makes them not only great for nail art, but for a full cover too. I personally prefer the larger round for cover brush but HONA do do a smaller one, if that's what you prefer. Taking a small amount of product again towards the cuticle and nudging it up from left to right.

The best way to apply these colours is sort of flow and bounce the product. If you pull it too hard, it will go really streaky. So make sure you're using a really light touch. One thing I want to say is when you're using a dark gel your cuticle prep needs to be even more important than it usually is. Otherwise, you won't get a perfectly even finish. Even though I'm using a different consistency product, the concept is just the same. So pulling the skin back going down the sidewalls nice and slowly but smoothly and softly and then pulling the product across the rest of the now just the same as before using a really thin stripe and brush with a tiny amount of product you literally only want to just enough product to wet the bristles. You really don't want to be flooding the cuticle with loads of black gel polish because you will find when you're trying to wipe that off, it will stain really badly and then clean off any mistakes that I've made you obviously don't need the gel on the skin so using those sticks make it really easy just to wipe them off. Once you have cured it is time just for a second coat again, the same process following the guideline that you did before being really careful that you don't know your brush up with too much put it at once. Using the angles of any sort of gel brush will make your application so much easier. So like on the tip of the brush on around use that for the corners of the cuticle for the sidewalls use the side edges of the brush. I just want to show you here that you should always let your gels setup before you let them go into the lamp and cure you can see while I've been doing around the cuticle how much more smoother and glossy that gel has become so the last trick I want to give you whenever I've failed and buffed I always wipe over the now with some acetone it very gently melts the top layer of the builder create a really super smooth surface and gives you a really super crisp French thank you all for watching. I'm sure it's everything that you know already but it's nice to see sometimes how other people do their application. Hope you've enjoyed the video and I'll see you in the next one.