BRUSH CARE AND HOW TO CLEAN YOUR BRUSH
Use ONLY your Monomer Acrylic Nail Liquid to clean your Acrylic Brush.
When using a new acrylic brush for the first time, the “dressing” which is a protective coating used to keep the brush hairs in place during shipping, must be thoroughly removed.
Pour some of the Monomer Nail Liquid into a clean dappen dish.
Dislodge the dressing by immersing the brush hairs into the monomer, lift your brush out and wipe it on a nail wipe several times until the brush is completely clean.
Shape the brush into a point while wet and your brush is now ready.
Discard the remaining monomer and wipe out the dish.
Fill your dappen dish with some clean fresh NSI Monomer Nail Liquid and saturate the hairs of your brush into it, this will eliminate air bubbles.
Shape brush into a fine point again on a nail wipe. You can now process to your acrylic application.
* Our best seller NSI brush is the Royal Precision Brush, it has a vented cap for better storage. Place the vented cap over the brush hair for storage.
* Never wash your brushes with soap, water or Acetone as these substances could dry out your brush. The best is to stay away from solvents for the cleaning of your acrylic brush - Avoid using Brush Cleaner for your acrylic brushes, their formulas tend to be too harsh and drying the hairs of the acrylic brushes.
Brush Cleaners are generally best used to clean Gel brushes with synthetic and nylon hairs.
* Never put the brush down during use or after use without cleaning it well first - if this is not done cured acrylic will stay in the brush hairs, the brush will be clogged and unusable. If the brush does get clogged with acrylic, you can try to soak it in a little bit of monomer, the acrylic may soften enough to be removed.
* Do not use your fingers on the brush hairs. And be very careful to never touch the skin with the brush hairs, this could lead to contamination and overexposure.
Storage of brushes:
First check that all hairs are freely moving when dipping your brush into the jar of Monomer Nail Liquid, by pressing your brush side to side and also flat onto the bottom of the jar, check that there is no acrylic clogged into the hairs.
Shape the brush hairs back to a tapered fine point: on a nail wipe, while wiping the wet hairs of the brush, gently roll the brush between your fingers until you get the very end tip of the brush hairs well tapered in a fine point again. Store your brushes horizontally in a brush case or covered container.
The Royal Precision Brush has a vented cap for better storage, see pictures below.
Do not store your brush upright , as excess monomer will drain into the ferrule of the brush and get tacky as it evaporates. This tacky material will go directly into fresh monomer when you collect a new bead and could result in possible yellowing ; a sign of contamination.
Do not store your brush near dust.
Do not store brushes back into their packaging (eg.plastic tubes & bags) as the plastic packaging will disintegrate to the contact of the monomer with time.
"Never skimp on buying brushes, they are the main tools of our trade and make application easier, I always use your beautiful Royal Precision brush!" Andrea Martin NSI User ~ The Beauty Room
Check out this deal - $5 OFF COUPON for the purchase online of a Royal Precision Brush
Valid until 31/12/2016
Check out the shiny new “CHROME MIRROR NAIL” trend!
Amazing change of Colours ~ endless possibilities! You can use every colour, the effect will always be different.
I’ve been experimenting on the chrome pigments and this is what I come with, a few tips and some pictures to give you more ideas, hope you enjoys them as much as I did playing with them all!
Firstly, to answer the question: “can I add these pigments to powders?” ~ the answer is: “yes of course you can also add these chrome pigments to any acrylic powders for infinite possibilities ; however the mirror effect you were first looking for will not be present in this situation and you might want to use glitter instead and save your chrome mirror pigments for a mirror look effect”.
With the chrome pigments, you can now you too, experiment with Polish Pro colours under the chrome pigments to create a rainbow of coloured chrome mirror effect look on the nails.
See a few combinations that I have painted and experimented on Polish Pro colours and that I wanted to share with you all. WOW!
So many combinations are possible and I’m enjoying the plays… pigments all over table, my hands and face!
Which Topcoat to use for the best results?
Make sure you are using a tack free Topcoat , otherwise you won’t get a mirror finish.
After experimenting with all our range of Topcoats, I’m sharing here which ones are the best to use.
* TACK FREE TOPCOATS: are the best to use with a brushing-rubbing-on technique. Mirror effect are obtainable.
First on the List: SINA TOP COAT (included in PURPLE Chrome Kit & also sold separately on its own) comes on top of the list! It's the best to work with pigments - it's flexible and absorbing the chrome pigments really well. The pigments are staining the surface of this Topcoat really well. Great to use on natural nails too. Pigments are also usable on enhancements of course. Great mirror finish effect.
GLAZE’N GO UV and GLAZE’N GO LED/UV are great with all pigment colors, maybe excepted the HOLO pigments as Glaze'N Go tend to be harder to be penetrated by this pigment for some reasons. It can also depends of the power of your lamp and the cure, as it looks like the Topcoat you are going to use needs to be stained by the pigments - it's not happening if your Topcoat (tack free) is too hard after its cure. On all other colors of pigments, Glaze'N GO is great for their shine and perfect mirror effect finish. Also very easy to work and apply the pigments on. Favs on all nail art and colours for the extra depth it gives too! If you haven’t tried Glaze’N Go yet, here is one more good reason to try it and get a tack free finish with the best shine, depth on designs, mirror effect and longevity on enhancements, as Glaze’N GO is more than a Topcoat - it’s a very strong curable Sealant Topcoat for enhancements.
* NON TACK FREE TOPCOATS: The need of using the pigments with a technique of Tapping-depositing on the surface of nails is the go. No mirror effect obtainable. Effects of rich chromy metallic colors with show only.
BALANCE BRUSH ON GLOSS UV is alright to use, but not giving a good mirror finish. Plus, it’s not a tack free topcoat so there is the need of applying the pigments on the tacky residue layer. The finish look is chromy metallic colors but the mirror finish is not achievable.
THERMOSHIELD is showing like taking the pigments into it alright, but results are more as a chromy metallic colors for a pigmented finish or a sparkly glittery finish but not a great mirror effect with Thermoshield.
AIRSHIELD - Experiments were showing that the pigments cannot penetrate properly the Airshield topcoat. So pigments are only usable as they are chromy and metallic colors patted into maybe a freshly applied layer and before its drying but the mirror effect cannot be achieved with this topcoat.
Chrome Pigments application
After the application of SINA TOP COAT or GLAZE’N GO topcoat and cure, you can then process to the opening of your chrome pigments jars.
You must rub the chrome pigments powders into the Topcoat on the nail surface, to get a mirror effect look. Apply the chrome pigment powders with the sponge applicator.
Rub the pigments in all directions and try to get them to penetrate the topcoat, like you want the pigments to stain the clear topcoat, rub from the nail free edge to the cuticle area and then in the other direction.
When you see that the pigments have actually properly penetrated the topcoat and are giving a change of look for the colour, you can then remove gently the rest of the pigments around cuticles and sidewalls. Clean the excess of pigments with a clean soft new make up brush or a clean nail wipe and have a light touch to do this, otherwise you will leave tiny little scratches into the new chrome mirror look and they’ll be showing after the finishing topcoat.
Apply your last coat of SINA TOPCOAT or GLAZE’N GO and cure. Et Voila, a nice chrome and mirror finish!
* Keep 1 Bottle of GLAZE’N GO or SINA TOP COAT to use just for your nail art, that way you will not get little particles of pigments or sparkles into your Topcoats.
* To get the best result mirror finish possible, it is important to remove all the excess of pigment from the surface before applying your last layer of Topcoat, and as said above, to have your bottles of Topcoats staying free of any pigment or glittery effect into them.
* Store each of your pigments in a little plastic zipping sachet with its brush applicator, you can even label the sachet with it’s name of colour.
* If the pigment powders are used on a tacky residue layer, it doesn’t actually give you an easy application as to rub the pigments into the topcoat to stay anchored ; the look is more like a chrome sparkly effect than a smooth mirror finish. By doing this, you are definitively using a bigger amount of your pigments that you could have saved by rubbing way less of your pigments onto a tack free topcoat that has a smoother surface… Use SINA TOPCOAT or GLAZE’N GO and see the difference!
Find Chrome Pigments online.
Another play with the last Chrome Pigments arrived: the GOLD and HOLOGRAPHIC.
For the HOLO Pigments, I have found them showing more of the "rainbow of colors" with even more reflexion of ligth by using them on top of the SINA Topcoat (sold in the Kits or separately) than using them on top of Glaze'N Go ~ I'm not too sure why, but it looks like the Sina Topcoat takes the pigments in a bit better and gives a bit more of the zooming effect on the rainbow of colors when finished. This topcoat is more flexible and tend to be stained by the pigments a lot better.
Gold Pigment on background of colors: Purple, Pink and light gold (from left to right)
Holo Pigments on Black and Grey (from left to right)
On a grey color as background
On a black color background
Enjoy your plays with Nail Art and the Chrome Mirror Pigments,
I hope this blog will give you a few tips and ideas and most importantly a lot of FUN with your colours, sparkles and pigments!
That’s all from me this week, Have a good one and have fun!
Carinna @ NSI Australia
The correct ratio of liquid monomer and acrylic powder (polymer) is vital to produce strong, flexible, durable, and non-lifting enhancements.
A proper mix ratio is determined by the amount of polymer powder blended with the monomer liquid.
Achieving the proper mix ratio is essential to creating a beautiful and durable acrylic enhancement.
Different enhancement systems require different mix ratios. It is not possible to create a monomer liquid that can be used with any mix ratio so pay close attention to the manufacturer's recommendations in regards to mix ratio.
✍️ When the mix ratio is right, the following is assured:
* Excellent retention
* Strength and toughness
* Prevention of overexposure
* Proper set and cure times.
When the bead is too wet, the result is:
* Potential lifting and weakness
* Excessive shrinkage
* Lengthened set and cure time.
When the bead is too dry, the result is:
* Weakness and lack of cohesion
All liquids and powder systems have a recommended mix ratio for successful workability and wearability.
For ATTRACTION NAIL LIQUID and UNIVERSAL NAIL LIQUID, a medium wet mix will bring optimum results.
Achieving the proper mix ratio takes practice and a keen eye. It is best to always look at the bead prior to placement on the tip, form or natural nail.
CREATING THE BEAD, Attraction and Universal Liquids:
Use the NSI brush of your choice ~ the Royal Precision Brush is our recommendation for the best tool you can get for an acrylic brush. Dip the entire brush into the dappen dish of monomer. Pull the brush from the dappen dish and using the sides of the dappen dish, wipe off some of the excess liquid. This will create a flat side to the brush.
Use only the flags of your brush (the darkest part of the Kolinsky Sable brush) or the very end tip of the brush to gently drag and press into the powder. When the bead is on the brush, it should have a slightly dimpled look, not too shiny and not too firm.
You know when the bead is “right” by:
* The look
* The feel
* The color
* The size
Use your own good judgment and eye as an artist to look at the bead before you place it down!
The LOOK of the “right” bead:
When the bead is formed and pulled from the powder, look at it and watch to make sure all the powder gets absorbed into the liquid. Make certain that no excess powder is lingering around the edges of the bead.
If it stays too firm and looks dry, get rid of it and start over. Service breakdown could result without the right amount of liquid.
If the bead is too shiny and wet, tap it gently back into the powder to pick up an ever so slight amount.
A bead that is too wet will lead to excessive shrinkage, bubbles, cracking and lifting.
Most nail technicians will work too wet and they don’t take that extra second to look at the bead prior to application.
The FEEL of the “right” bead:
The bead you create should feel good. When you drop the bead on the nail, allow a few seconds to pass so the bead starts to level. When you start to press the bead out onto the nail it should have the feel of moving easily, specially if you are using a good brush that can hold enough liquid into its barrel to keep the bead playable, e.g.. Royal Precision Brush #8 => total control for about 2 minutes (depending of bead size, powder used, temperature of room etc…). If the bead looks right, but feels wrong, it might be your touch. When you first place the bead, it will feel wetter, but as you work, the product will start to set up and a firmer pressure will be required.
The COLOR of the “right” bead:
Use your eyes to make sure that from bead to bead you are achieving the same color. When using a highly pigmented powder such as Attraction Radiant Pink, Purely Pink Masque and the big array of pinks masking powders Opaques,Technailcolors, also Radiant White, all these powders do contain more pigments, and a drier bead of one of these will certainly look different. More pigment, more color! The bead should resemble that of a frosted glass. The correct mix ratio assures color consistency and helps prevent marbleising.
Test your bead. A good test is to drop your bead on the practice tip and wait about 5 seconds.
The bead should dome out and level by about 25% with no ring of liquid around the base.
If it’s too wet, it will drop about 50%, and too dry, it will hold a firm shape and not drop.
The SIZE of the bead:
When a smaller bead is desired, then extract more liquid from your brush by wiping it along the edges of the dappen dish. Then dip into your powder, and remember to look at it to judge.
On the same token, if you need a larger bead, don’t wipe as much liquid out of your brush prior to dipping into the powder.
✍️ Train and trust your eyes to determine the correct mix ratio and bead size.
You are the artist, and you will get accustomed to what to look for.
✍️ The correct ratio of liquid monomer and acrylic powder (polymer) is vital to produce strong, flexible, durable, and non-lifting enhancements.
The wrong liquid-to-powder ratio can result in premature lifting or breakage.
Most acrylic systems require a medium-wet bead.
Put your hands on the BEST TOOLS for Acrylic Nails!
✍️The Perfect PREP is a must, here are some of the PREP products in THE MUST HAVE PACKs , available for the perfect prep and adhesion, therefore longevity of the nails.
You can learn more about Nail Preparation in our blog.
✍️Your most important tool, the very precise and best seller brush on the market by NSI: the #8 Royal Precision Brush. Made from pure Kolinsky sable hair. Ergonomically designed for perfect balance and comfort. Its vented cap offers protection for the brush during storage and travel, while allowing air circulation and acts as a handle extender.
Note, that a good brush needs to be big enough at the belly-barrel, as the belly is the part of the brush that will keep enough of the nail liquid for you to work your bead onto the nails and therefore you will gain enough time for moving the product where you want, before the acrylic is setting.
✍️Let the product work for you! And for this you need a good SELF LEVELLING ACRYLIC SYSTEM: ATTRACTION Acrylic System empowers the user to create captivating enhancements effortlessly. The unique flow and spring back action are unsurpassed. See and try our ATTRACTION line of Liquid and Powders, and the Primer Attract ~ fantastic trio of products together => best results as a “trio system”: Attraction Nail Liquid + Attraction Nail Powder + Attract Primer.
✍️File with a smile with the ENDURANCES files and Buffer: all these files can be washed and sanitised, soaked submerged for 10 mn into a disinfectant solution and then let to dry on a pad.
Endurances files are lasting 4 times longer than other files. Their bridge shape is excellent for comfort in the hand and also for using the straight side for filing straight lines (eg. parallel sidewalls) and by using the bridge side go into quick turning motions for a fast finishing.
the 100/100grit is the coarser one in the line, used to remove existing product.
150/150grit is used to shape the nails and also the work on the barrel of the nails and apex.
180/180grit is for finishing, also used for PREP.
The Buffer 180/240grit is perfect for both PREP and finishing near the cuticle and sidewalls areas and as a buffer for smoothing the nails before the topcoat application.
✍️Protect your work with a good TOPCOAT. The best long lasting topcoats are the ones that are curable under a nail Lamp UV or LED, as these formulations of topcoats are way more waterproof than normal air drying topcoats that can only give you a shine on the surface of the nails.
GLAZE’N GO is the perfect enhancement finisher. No need for a heavy final buffing.
Just clean the nails with CLEANSE and apply :
GLAZE’N GO UV and cure 90s if you are using a UV Nail Lamp (36Watts is best)
or apply GLAZE’N GO LED/UV (and UV too, yes!) and cure into the LED nail lamp for 60s - in the UV Nail lamp for 120s.
NSI ATTRACTION Acrylic System is a friendly user system - easy to use by new users, students and nail artists that are swapping from another brand. Here is why!
The system is so practical with its very unique feel and spring back action of the product, the Attraction Nail Liquid has a a tri-monomer composite technology, that draws and attract the powder to the brush like a magnet for a quicker easier bead pick up. This make this system a lot more friendlier for new users and newbies students than other brands.
The system works itself perfectly with a fantastic self levelling action and by simply using the easiest classic and traditional MEDIUM WET MIX RATIO. It will deliver exceptional adhesion, strength and flexibility without the worries of working with a new product.
Before starting, remember:
✍️ the Natural Nail Prep is a must, see our Blog on Nail Preparation.
✍️ the brush is your most important tool for creating thin, beautiful and properly designed nail enhancements. NSI best recommended brush and number 1 best top seller is the Royal Precision Brush ~ The better the brush, the better the craftsmanship! Once in your hands, you will never pick up another brush, it makes smile lines so easy with the super fine point and this is because the brush always returns to a perfect point and has a firm resistance, a precise product control and placement with excellent memory and snap.
Its Pure Kolinsky hairs make it the best brush for detail work, perfecting the smile line and the best belly barrel for working with a reverse application as it holds enough liquid for a single big bead to be used in one go.
MIX RATIO: these are easy steps to follow below.
Submerge your brush completely into a glass dappen dish of NSI Attraction or NSI Universal Nail Liquid and flatten hairs to saturate the brush. This will prevent dry powder particles on the nail and it will force out any oxygen trapped around the brush hairs. Complete saturation is recommended at the beginning of each use.
Wipe the brush along the sides of the dappen dish to release excess liquid. The more liquid you remove the smaller the bead pick up, while still maintaining a medium wet mix. Leave larger amounts of liquid for larger beads that may be required.
Dip the flags (the very end tip of the brush) into the powder. Hold and press until desired bead size has been achieved. The bead should be medium wet, looking slightly frosted and dimpled with no loose powder. When the bead is placed on the nail, it should level about 25%, stay round and circle, its look should be shiny and self levelling on the nail. When it is pressed, it should move where you want it without running all over or being unable to press. Mix ratio can vary and for the best results, you may have to alter and readjust your mix ratio slightly depending on the weather conditions for your area.
When dropping the bead on the nail, lift your brush for a brief moment, look at it self levelling ~ this is the beauty of a good high quality acrylic system!
Press the bead gently without cutting into it, use the belly-barrel of the brush: that’s where you have the most of your liquid helping the bead to stay moveable and playable. Continue pressing it from side to side to evenly distribute the product.
✍️Use the correct mix ratio ~ For acrylic application, here are some pictures on how to test your acrylic beads.
Place a bead of product directly on the apex of a clean acrylic nail tip. Do not pat or push it down, just observe it for ten seconds. If it’s too wet, it will settle and flow outward immediately or drop by half within those ten seconds, losing most of its original shape. if it’s too dry, the height and shape will be completely unchanged after ten seconds, be difficult to keep in place, and will look crusty.
The perfect consistency will look like frosted glass.
Read more in our Blog: MIX RATIO
Product placement by Zone:
ZONE 1 - The TIP , Smile Line, Extension edge
ZONE 2 - The STRESS AREA
ZONE 3 - The CUTICLE AREA
✍️ Zone sculpting is a way to structurally create the enhancement for strength and beauty, while eliminating excessive filing.
Tip, Smile Line and Extension edge - Zone 1
Choose a white powder to use in the NSI Attraction Acrylic Powder range.
By using the mix ratio method above, place a medium sized bead near the smile line in zone 1, and using the tip of the brush, gently press the smile line into place guiding and slightly pushing the product into the corner of the smile line. Keep the brush handle angled downward which will help to keep the smile line edge thicker and will also taper the extension edge.
Clean any excess product from your brush and roll it cleaned back into a fine point. To crisp and define the smile line, back brush while the product is still moveable.
For Zones 2 and 3 - Stress Area and Cuticle Area - Use Pinks, natural Sheer Pink, or Masking covering Opaque Pinks, or a Clear Powder from the Attraction range.
Use the same mix ratio method above and drop the bead just slightly beyond the smile line. Very lightly, feather into the smile line. Be careful not to drag product over the white smile line. The intensity of the pink and the opacity will cover or camouflage the white.
Continue in zone 3, leaving a tiny margin around the cuticle and sidewalls, and yes - this is very important! By leaving a little gap of approximatively 2mm, this will assure that you are not overexposing your client and ensure that enough space of a gap is kept for the Topcoat Sealant Glaze’N Go to have a good bonding grip between the product and the natural nails -> it will allow Glaze’N Go to do its job as a sealant topcoat waterproof having enough room to seal the enhancement you’ve just created for a longer and stronger adhesion and therefore for more longevity.
If additional product is needed to create the apex, use a small bead of Totally Clear or Crystal Clear in zone 2.
Allow product to set until you can hear a “click” when lightly tapping with a Tech Tool Cuticle pusher onto the nails.
For an overlay, you can also use 1 colour of acrylic powder of your choice to cover the whole nails - Zone 1, 2 and 3.
You can use Totally Clear Powder, or Crystal Clear or Sheer Pink Powder or other pinks, Masking Opaque Pinks. Use the same mix ratio. These powders are sheer, translucent or clear or opaques Masking and covering for the masking ones and they can all be used in all 3 zones. Allow product to set, until you hear a “click”.
The Finishing will ensure that the shape is defined at the outer edge, flush at the cuticle line, flush along the sidewalls and nails are thinner at the extension edge. Refine surface and check for proper design and apex placement. Remove the dust with an NSI Plush Brush. Buff to a high shine with a 3-way Buffer and condition the skin with Nurture Oil.
Or Apply Glaze’N Go Enhancement Sealant, now available as a Topcoat Sealant curable UV: Glaze’N Go UV and also available as Glaze’N Go LED. Condition surrounding skin with Nurture Oil.
✍️Balance is key ~ a well balanced and designed enhancement will maintain the longevity as well as the beauty and toughness while the nail grows out.
With any natural nail products or enhancements, whether it is nail polish or a full set of tips, the nail preparation is the most important. Proper nail preparation ensures that the products don't lift and last longer.
Start the nail treatment by asking your client to wash her hands, give her a nail brush and a non greasy anti bacterial soap, to ensure all dirt and oils are removed. Make sure all your utensils and tools are cleaned and sanitised and your hands are cleaned. Use NSI Sanipure Spray on your client's hands and on yours too as a refreshing citrus sanitiser. This fast antiseptic reduces the spread of infection, it’s also a great item for keeping everything sanitised ; hands, your work areas, and for implements & tools. Easy to store in handbags, at home or in cars to keep hands cleaned and germ free.
Take a lint free nail wipe soaked with NSI Nailpure Plus and wipe scrub the clients nails. This product dehydrates the nails and ensures a dust and oil free surface to work on.
Gently tidy the cuticles. Use a sanitised Tech Tool or Curette Cuticle Pusher to push the Eponychium back and remove the dead skin cells from the nail bed. Gently cut away any excess of cuticle with cuticle nippers. The removal of the dead skin cells is important as they could retain moisture causing the product to lift.
For a basic manicure gently file the nail into the desired shape.
For nail enhancements cut the natural nail shorter. File the shortened natural nail using the NSI Endurance Buffer 180/240 grit. Any other grit that is lower than 180 grit will be too harsh on the natural nails. The Endurance buffer 180/240 is perfect for prep on natural nails, and also its use for nail enhancement preparation is great for acrylics, gels and gel polish services.
Gently remove the shine of the nails. Remove all dust from the nails with the NSI Plush Brush and then again wipe the nails cleaned with a lint free wipe soaked with NSI Nailpure Plus. If you are doing a manicure, the nails are now ready for painting.
NSI Bond Enhancer can be use to maximise the adhesion of any nail service. It's a PH Balancer and a nail dehydrator. It works in 3-5 seconds leaving the natural nail plate ready for the primer, glue or polish depending on the service. It works with any system.
For enhancements apply NSI Primer, making sure you do not put any product on the cuticle, skin nor sidewalls. Brush on the product at least 1mm away from the cuticle. Allow to dry.
For Acrylics, opte for 1 of those primers:
Attract Primer is acid-free, it covalently bonds to the natural nail and the enhancement product for an exceptional adhesion. This non-acid primer provides maximum strength, adhesion and is easy to use.
Superbond Primer is the original primer formula used in the nail industry, it does contains Methacrylic Acid to promote even a stronger adhesion. Use sparingly – a little goes a long way! This primer is well known for its super strong adhesion for those clients that are tougher with their hands and are more prone to lifting.
Secrets Acrylic Nail Primer is the non-acid primer for the Secrets line of products.
✍️ Remember, you get the best results by using products as a system (brand or line of products) - No MIX => No MESS! By trying to mix products from other brands, lines or systems, you are actually risking incompatibility, lack of cohesion, poor results, service break downs and it will be very difficult for you to do any troubleshooting.
✍️ The best results are obtained when working as a system.
The prep is now done and you can continue with the application of the Acrylic system or Gel system on the nails. See the Attraction Acrylic System or Balance Gel System or Secrets Acrylic System. For our Gel Polish System, see Polish Pro.