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I am an acrylic nails girl. I transitioned from acrylic to gel yesterday, getting a gel fill instead of acrylic. I don't like the look or feel of the gel on my nails. They are not smooth to the touch. The tech who did them, I work with and she's been doing nails for over 16 yrs. I go to a different tech at another salon for my acrylic. I don't know what to do. As a nail tech, I prefer to do gels on my clients but I don't want to lie if they comment on my nails and I have acrylic. If I decide to take the gel off, do I soak them like the gel polishes? I need adviceSmile
Gels should be just as smooth and natural feeling as your own nail, at least they do on me. They should not be lumpy.

As for removal, if its is a soak off gel then yes you can soak it off, if it is a hard gel then it needs to be filed off.

You can try filing them smooth at the cuticle area and just as you would the acrylic and then apply a top coat of gel really thin and smooth to help the transition.

I think you should practice on yourself and use the gel and not AC if in fact that is what you are using on your clients, so that you can showcase your own work. It takes a lot of practice but the reward once you have the technique down is sooooo worth it.
She used OPI axxium gel on my nails. I think that's a soak off but not sure. I don't want to hurt her feelings since I am so new to the nail world. I can soak off the gel over the weekend at home so she wouldn't see what I was doing I guess. I totally understand about doing my own nails so am learning to do that. It's very hard to do on the non-dominant hand! Do most people know the difference between AC and gel just by looking at it?
The gel should be smooth. Mine are always smooth.

It takes a lot of practice to do your own nails. I do my own and I'm starting school in a week. I hope I can do it on someone else's hand.

Good luck! You will get the hang of it! Smile
OPI Axxium unless it says soak off is a hard gel. I once had both gel and acrylic on different nails and ask another tech who was set on gel which one was gel and she actually picked the acrylic one LOL. The client should be taught the difference between gel and acrylic (which are the same thing) there is enough bad info out there and people need to know the truth. It is always best to do your own nails so you don't have to refer people to others. I would suggest just file down your nails and build them up smooth instead of taking them all the way off. Big Grin I know long winded sorry!

She's been doing nails for 16 years, how long has she done gel? If the nails were rough, I'd say not too long or she's not taken any classes on it. File the nails and smooth them and reseal them. Find someone, preferable a reputable educator in your area to show you their gel product. I think you'll see a world of difference.
Yes she has been doing nails for over 16 yrs but only using gel for a little while I think. As far as I know, she is self taught with the gel. She never mentioned going to classes etc. I am going back to acrylic on my nails but I do want to find classes, seminars on gels so I can educate myself on the product. I know there is another tech in town that only does gels, I might go introduce myself and see if she would be a mentor. Thanks for all the replies!!


I dont work with axxium but if its a self leveling gel then I would say she needs a little more time with application technique as that will smooth itself out before curing. But thicker non self leveling gels, some of their instructions say they are meant to be filed to shape and then sealed with the clear last layer.
Axxium is a thinner self leveling gel, but when I use gel still always smooth it out and refine the shape even if it is self leveling. If you watch young nails on you tube they have some great video's on technique.