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Why Do My Polygel Nails Pop Off?

Have you ever had your polygel nails pop off unexpectedly? It can be incredibly frustrating and inconvenient, especially when it happens in the middle of a special event.

But don’t worry – this blog post will explain why polygel nails may pop off, as well as what steps you can take to ensure that your beautiful manicure remains intact for longer. Keep on reading to find out the answers…

Woman applying polygel nails to her natural nails

Why Do My Polygel Nails Pop Off?

When polygel nails are applied, a brush-on primer should be utilized in order to create a strong bond between the natural nail and the product.

If this doesn’t happen, it can cause an air gap between the two surfaces and weaken the bond. This will lead to them popping off quickly after application.

Any lifting of the edges of the nails may cause gaps which allow moisture to slip underneath – weakening and ultimately leading to peeling.

To ensure that your polygel nails stay put for as long as possible, make sure that you prep your nails thoroughly with a brush-on primer before applying your polygel, use a light touch when filing around cuticles so as not to lift up the edges and take care when washing dishes or cleaning with harsh chemicals – all of which can weaken the bonds further over time.

Poor Adhesion

The reason for poor adhesion may be due to a variety of factors, including using the wrong primer or not using primer at all.

It’s important to use the right nail primer, within your polygel nail kit, to ensure optimal adhesion of your nail to the gel base coat.

You may need to use a slip solution after you apply the polygel and before the curing process under UV light nail lamp. This slip solution helps ensure that the polygel will not slip or move while the nail bed and nail tips are being cured.

Another cause of poor adhesion for your polygel manicure could be improper nail prep of the nail bed.

Make sure to use a nail brush and scrape any traces of oils or residue from your nails before applying the polygel. Failing to thoroughly prepare your nail bed can lead to lifting and weak adhesion.

Lastly, if the nail artist doesn’t cure your polygel nails for the correct amount of time, it can lead to adhesion issues.

The LED light used for curing should be held about 1-2 cm away from the nail and should be held in place for a full two minutes. If you don’t do this, the polygel can easily lift and come off the nail.

Woman applying polygel nails to her natural nails

Inadequate Preparation

Polygel nails are a modern, advanced type of nail extension that can give you long, strong nails that look beautiful, but like any other type of nail enhancement, they need to be prepared correctly to prevent lifts and pops.

Poor nail preparation is one of the most common reasons for polygel nails not lasting as long as they should.

The first step to proper nail prep is to ensure that your natural nails are clean and free of any oils, dirt or dust.

For this, a nail brush and a non-acetone gel polish remover can be used. It is important to avoid using acetone-based nail polish removers, as this can weaken the nail surface.

Once the nails are clean, a slip solution should be applied to the natural nails. This helps create a barrier between the nail and the polygel artificial nails, which will keep it from lifting and popping off.

Next, the nail surface should be buffed and prepped so that they are ready to receive the polygel.

Use a nail buffer to shape and smooth the nail, and then an electric nail file to buff away any uneven or raised areas. Be sure to clean the nails once more before the next step.

Now the UV light can be used to cure the polygel and harden it. When the light is brought in close contact with the nails, it will harden or cure the gel, creating a secure bond with the nail.

This will prevent any lifting. Allowing the light to pass over each nail several times will ensure that the gel is fully cured and secure.

If, despite all of the preparation, your polygel nails pop off, you may need to try a repair process.

First, make sure to clean the nail with a nail brush and a non-acetone nail polish remover, then buff and prep the nail once more. It is important to avoid using any acetone-based products on the nails, as this can weaken them.

Poor Application Techniques

Poor application techniques can be a major cause for polygel nails popping off prematurely. It is important to use the right amount of products when applying polygel nails.

Applying too much product can create tension and cause the nail to pop off prematurely. Also, if the bond is not properly cured, it may not harden correctly, leading to the nail popping off prematurely.

When prepping the nail, make sure that all dirt, oils and dead skin are removed from the nail.

Not properly prepping the nail can also lead to premature popping of the nail.

Lastly, keep in mind that using an incorrect order of steps during application can cause the nail to not adhere correctly, ultimately bringing about premature nail popping.

To avoid these issues, it is important to take your time and be thorough when applying polygel nails. This will help ensure that you get strong and long lasting nails.

woman having polygel nails applied to her fingers

Too Much Moisture

Having polygel nails is a great way to keep your nails looking fabulous all the time. However, if they start popping off frequently, you could be dealing with too much moisture in the polymerization process.

This can make it difficult for the polygel to adhere properly to your nail, resulting in it lifting or coming off altogether.

But there’s no need to worry. We’re here to help you figure out why your polygel nails are popping off and how to fix this issue.

The first step to solving moisture-related problems with your polygel nails is to use a slip solution.

This product is designed to reduce the stickiness of the polygel, so it won’t adhere too much to your natural nails, allowing it to dry without any moisture or oil build-up. To apply the slip solution, use a soft nail brush.

If the slip solution doesn’t work, you may need to look into using a UV light. This type of light helps to cure the polygel, reducing the risk of it lifting or coming off due to too much moisture.

If you do opt for a UV light, make sure to follow the instructions carefully to ensure proper usage.

How Can I Prevent My Polygel Nails from Popping Off?

Preventing your polygel nails from popping off is easier than you might think. First, be sure to properly prep your nails before application.

Gently remove any existing polish or residue from the nails, then use a buffer to remove any ridges on the nail and create a smooth, clean surface.

Next, push back and trim the cuticles, then sanitize your nails with rubbing alcohol to remove any dust or debris.

When your nails are prepped, carefully apply the polygel according to the instructions included with your product.

Apply in thin layers and be sure to cap the free edge of the nail as you go. Once you have applied the polygel and cured it under the LED/UV light, seal it with a top coat for an extra layer of protection.

Lastly, make sure your nails are adequately dried before using hand cream or performing any activities such as washing dishes or cleaning. 

If your nails are too wet or oily, it can weaken the bond of the product and cause popping off.

Woman applying polygel nails to her natural nails

What Should I Do If My Polygel Nail Pops Off?

If your polygel nail pops off, you should not panic; it is a common occurrence. In most cases, the problem can be easily fixed. Here are some tips to help reattach your polygel nail:

1. Clean the Detached Polygel Nail – Use an acetone-free nail cleanser and a lint-free wipe to clean both the detached nail and the natural nail underneath. This will ensure that any oils or dirt are removed from both surfaces.

2. Prepare for Reattachment – Gently buff both the natural nail and the polygel nail so that they have more surface area for better adhesion once reattached.

3. Apply Adhesive – For maximum hold, you should use a special nail adhesive designed for polygel nails. This will ensure that the bond is strong and secure.

4. Reattach the Polygel Nail – Place the detached nail carefully onto the natural nail, then press firmly to encourage adhesion. Allow a few minutes for the adhesive to set before using your hands again.

With these tips, you hopefully should be able to reattach your polygel nail and avoid further problems with it popping off.

If you are still having issues after attempting these steps, consult a professional manicurist or professional nail technician for assistance in resolving your issue.

How Can I Make My Polygel Nails Last Longer?

If you want to make your polygel nails last longer and maintain their amazing look, there are a few things you can do. First, when you apply the polygel nails, it is important to ensure that the gel is properly bonded to the nail bed.

The more securely the base of the nail is attached, the longer the nails will last. To help ensure this, clean your nails before you begin the application process and make sure you use a primer or bonder if recommended.

Try to avoid activities that will put your nails in direct contact with water, since this can cause the nails to weaken.

Make sure to apply a top coat or a protective sealant after the gel is applied, as this will help to protect them from chipping or cracking.

Finally, make sure to regularly check for any signs of wear and tear and re-apply any protective sealant if needed.

Woman applying polygel nails to her natural nails


So, there you have it. Polygel nails are a great way to get long lasting, high-quality nails without having to go to the salon, but they can be tricky to work with. With the right preparation, application techniques, and aftercare, you can enjoy your beautiful Polygel nails for weeks to come.

Don’t forget to take off any excess moisture and make sure you are using the right products and tools, as these are two of the main factors that can affect the longevity of your Polygel nails. With a bit of practice, you’ll be a Polygel pro in no time!

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