Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Nail School Week 5: Acrylics Ahoy!

In week five, while we continued to work on an occasional client, we also began learning the fundamentals of acrylic sculpting. The first four weeks of school mostly covered services that I have some basic experience with, but when it comes to acrylic, it's all new to me! I definitely had some struggles at first, but things have steadily improved.

Acrylics here we come
My school puts a big emphasis on sculpting acrylic nails from scratch instead of doing plastic tips overlaid with acrylic, so we started learning the basics of sculpting on our skill sticks. The first stick we used is the one with the black nail forms pre-attached. As you can see, my early attempts were kind of a hot mess. That's ok though -- it's the first time I had ever done it!

The second skill stick comes without the forms pre-attached, so you can put your own nail forms on and then sculpt off the edge of the dowel. By the time we had graduated to the second stick, I had gotten a bit more confident in the basics of sculpting. We also learned how to file/buff our acrylics up to a high shine.

L: My first attempts at acrylic sculpting on my level 1 skill stick, R: Showing improvement on the level 2 skill stick

Jazzing it up
We also got some fun nail art demos this week! One of our instructors showed us how to work with colored acrylics and pigments to create unique sculpted nail designs, while another instructor showed us how to do ten different gel nail art techniques.

I was the model for the colored acrylic nails, so here's my right hand with three long acrylics. It was strange, to say the least. I am not used to having my nails that length!

L: My hand after serving as the model for a colored acrylics demo, R: Ten gel nail art technique demonstrations

Well that's...handy
Additionally, we continued to practice our tip blending and fiber wrap services on our mannequin hands. Though my school discourages the use of tips, it is a required service for state boards.

Here are my three ladies! I asked Instagram to help me name them, and my favorite suggestions were Chanail, Clawdia, and Felicia. My next hand will probably be named Regina Phalange. Say hello!

I'm actually getting this recap out on time this week, which means that week six starts today. We'll begin sculpting acrylics on our fellow classmates and our mannequin hands.

Thank you all for your positive feedback on this series! I'm having a blast writing it. Please feel free to let me know if you have any questions; I'd be happy to answer them if I can!

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Nail School Week 5: Acrylics Ahoy!
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