What is Nail Primer used for?

Don’t you just hate it when your nail polish starts chipping away when you just got them done a few days ago?

Not only would it have been a waste of your time, but quite a pain for your pockets as well.

Ugh, I understand the struggle. Been there, done that. A faded, crusty nail look isn’t exactly the most pleasing to look at.

So then you start to wonder, what exactly is the secret to achieving a flawless, chip-free manicure?

Well, unfortunately, there isn’t some sort of ancient hocus pocus technique to get your perfect nails to stay intact forever or anything. But what we do have are nail primers!

What does a nail primer do exactly, that it helps with a near-perfect finish for your polished nails?

Eyes here, as the answer, lies within this article!

Is a nail primer the same as a base coat?

Is a nail primer the same as a base coat

There’s a bit of confusion when it comes to differentiating these two nail products.

Nail primer, base coat, same thing, get the job done, right? Both serve to prepare your nails prior to your manicure and allow them to last longer.

While it’s true that they do have their similarities, they work in totally different ways and have their own distinct properties.

For instance, nail primer is a dehydrating product formulated to stick to your nail beds, thus making the product a bit harsher.

Since it acts as a dehydrator, it strips the nails of their natural oils and creates a bit of roughness on the nail plate.

Meanwhile, a base coat adds moisture to your nail beds to strengthen rather than remove them. 

Unlike nail primers, which cling to the nail polish applied on top, a base coat provides a protective layer between itself and the pigment above it, filling the small ridges and uneven areas on the nail. 

So no, nail primers and base coats are similar, but they are not the same. End of story.

How do you apply nail primer?

Applying nail primer is actually a pretty simple process. You can use the primer with a small brush, and it comes in the form of a clear liquid.

To start, you’ll have to take the brush out, wipe off the excess, and apply a thin layer down the middle of your unpolished nail. 

But wait, do you put primer on the whole nail? The answer is no! Nail primer has a way of spreading itself out, so there will be no need to apply it everywhere on your nail plate, lest it dehydrates the entire nail. 

However, if your nails are larger than average, you might need to apply a small amount down the sides to even it out. Just remember to steer clear of the cuticle area!

Wait for it to evaporate. It’s going to look like it just disappeared, but it leaves a sticky residue on the nail. At that point, you’re gonna want to proceed with your manicure or your artificial nail service as usual. 

Is a nail primer necessary?

Is a nail primer necessary

Now you might be thinking that with the harshness of nail primer, is it really necessary to apply it every time before painting over them?

Well, nail primers may be harsh, but they also come with their own set of benefits. Other than making your nail polish last longer, they cleanse your nails, providing a clean base for your manicure and also acting as an adhesive.

If you were to go through with the manicure without using it, your nail color would most likely fade quickly and leave your nails not looking as flawless as you’d hoped. 

When it comes to acrylic nails, however, nail primers are an essential step. They allow them to stay on firmly since enhancements such as these don’t stick well to moisturized surfaces.

Overall, whether or not it’s necessary depends on if you want them to last long and the kind of nail enhancement you’re planning to get. It also depends if the primer itself is suitable with the type of product being used and if the nails where it is to be applied are in the right condition.

So if your nails are prone to dryness and irritation or they just don’t sit well with dehydrators, then it may be best for them not to use nail primers as often.

How to use nail primer for gel nails

How to use nail primer for gel nails

Aside from acrylic nails, nail primer is also an essential step for long-lasting gel nails.

The primer forms a bond with the gel color applied on top of it, making it stick for as long as it can hold. Here’s how you do it:

  1. The first thing to do is push back your eponychium (that’s the fancy term for cuticles!). After which, you’ll want to file the surface of your nails and shape them to your liking.
  2. Dust off the nail plate using a lint-free wipe with 90% alcohol.
  3. This is the part where you follow the steps on how to apply nail primer. Again, be careful not to touch the cuticle area.
  4. Apply a thin layer of gel base coat as close to the eponychium as possible.
  5. Cure for 30 seconds under a lamp.
  6. Paint on a very thin color coat, this time making sure not to get too close to your eponychium or free edge, as all the layers can make it too thick. Then cure your nails for another 30 seconds.
  7. Apply the top coat, once again getting as close to the eponychium as possible. In that way, the color is basically sealed in by the lower and uppermost layers. Cure again.
  8. Using your lint-free wipe with 90%, wipe away the excess product.
  9. Lastly, put on cuticle oil, and you’re good to go!

Wrapping Things Up

In conclusion, a nail primer is a great way to even out your nail texture and keep your nail color from disappearing too soon. It acts as a dehydrator, an adhesive, and a cleanser!

The harshness of this product may not be ideal for everyone, though. So if you’d rather use a substitute product or try another method, that’s totally okay. 

Ultimately, it’s all up to you to decide what you think would be the best course of action and make sure your nails get the care they need. 

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