6 Reasons Why Your Gel Manicure Is Not Lasting

Issue No. 073


Gel manicures have taken the world of nail care, emerging as the go-to choice for individuals seeking both beauty and durability in their nail treatments. These innovative nail enhancements have gained even more popularity during these years as different designs, styles, and nail effects have been introduced.

It's no surprise that many enthusiasts and diy-ers have taken up the art of doing their own nails or even pursued professional courses to master the craft. However, despite the convenience and allure of gel manicures, some have encountered common issues that can leave their beautifully crafted nails chipping, lifting, or failing to stand the test of time. If you've found yourself facing these frustrations, it's crucial to recognize that there might be some mistakes you're making that are preventing your gel manicures from lasting.

Get even more in depth and knowledge through our YouTube tutorials and how-tos!


Achieving a lasting bond between your natural nails and gel polish is crucial for a beautiful and long-lasting gel manicure. Think of your nails and gel polish as a kind of "Velcro" connection – they need a slightly rough surface to securely attach to each other. To ensure this effective adhesion, it's essential to prepare your nails properly.  Start by lightly buffing your nails removing the shiny layer of your natural nail. File to desired shape, making sure no nail debris is stuck under or on the nail. Proceed in cleansing your nails with 70% alcohol to remove any other dust, dirt and oils.

Missing these crucial steps will lead to potential lifting and chipping issues down the road. So, taking the time to prep your nails is a vital step in ensuring the longevity of your gel mani.


When it comes to achieving a perfect gel mani, you need a perfect clean surface.
To achieve this, it is important to use a cuticle pusher to gently push back your cuticles and gently lift any dead skin off the nails and sidewalls. You can also use an e-file or a nail file to gently buff the tough, dead skin that is usually left over and stuck on your nail. It's important to be cautious and gentle in this process to avoid damaging your nail bed!

It is also important to not get any gel polish on your skin. Make sure that every time you paint, clean the sidewalls using a small clean up brush and wipe away any polish that is touching your skin before curing. This will prevent future lifting of the polish.


Have you heard of the saying "less is more" this holds true in the world of gel manicures. While it might be tempting to apply thick layers of gel polish, it's important to remember that in this case, less truly is more.

Thick layers can present a host of problems, the most significant being incomplete drying. Even if the top layer appears dry, the layers beneath may not have cured properly, which can result in peeling and even the entire manicure popping right off. To avoid these issues, it's essential to apply each layer of gel polish evenly and thinly. Thin layers not only dry more thoroughly and consistently, but they also allow for better adhesion.


If you're using an older lamp with damaged bulbs or a lamp that’s not strong enough, it's vital to make the necessary adjustments. A compromised lamp may not provide the consistent light needed for thorough colour penetration, which can result in issues such as uneven curing.

It's important to remember that when it comes to curing, overdoing it is generally safer than underdoing it. Over-curing your nails can lead to a harder, more durable finish, whereas under-curing can result in a manicure that doesn't last. So, ensuring that you invest in a quality lamp with functioning bulbs and following the recommended curing times is essential for achieving a gel mani that's not only visually stunning but is also built to last.


Using your gel mani as a tool to open things is a common but damaging habit that can have long-term consequences for the health and durability of your nails which leads up to breakage and chipping of the polish.

When you peel off your gel polish, you're not only stripping away the polish but also layers of your natural nail. This results in weakened, brittle nails that are often left uneven and vulnerable. If you attempt to apply a new gel nail polish on top of nails in this compromised state, you're setting the stage for a less than ideal experience. The polish may adhere poorly to the damaged surface and lead to a manicure that is weak, bend, and prone to chipping. To maintain the health and longevity of your nails, it's essential to break the habit of using them as tools and to treat your nails with care, both during and in-between manicures.


It's normal to feel the need to adjust the length of your nails when you have had your mani for a few weeks. While it may seem like a simple solution to trim or file them down but doing so will break the seal of the gel polish or top coat. Once that seal is broken it may open the door for water and dirt to seep under the polish leading to issues of lifting and peeling.

There can be billions of reasons that can contribute to chipping, peeling and short-lived manicures. However, by following these steps we promise that you'll significantly see the longevity of your mani. With these essential practices in your nail care routine, you can enjoy beautifully adorned nails that stay flawless for longer periods.


Let us know 1 of your go to tips for a beautiful mani.


Enter in this month’s blog giveaway for a shot at winning one of two $50 BSG e-gift cards! It’s easy – just follow these steps:

  1. Subscribe to our mailing list with the form below
  2. Leave a comment on this blog post

Every month, we will pick one lucky winner from Canada and one from the USA from the blog comments. Winners will be notified by email on the first Wednesday of the new month. Good luck!

[GIVEAWAY CLOSED. Winners are: Haylee P & Wambui K]

Try your luck on our next giveaway, find the most recent uploaded blog to enter. Click here to be redirected to all blogs.

* indicates required


Thanks for the tips. I’m a complete newbie. I’m waiting for my first order of gel polish to arrive! So excited!!

Debby Branson December 16, 2023

I love the product, never go wrong.

Louise November 28, 2023

Always love comments and help from BSG team🥰😇

charlotte hall November 25, 2023

Great article! Thanks for those tips.

Vanessa November 21, 2023
proper prep and upgrading my light has been a game-changer for me! Love Bio Seaweed Builder gel system, which has given me long-lasting manicures!
Jocelyne November 21, 2023

These tips are very helpful for someone who recently bought Builder Gel X for the first time as well as the BSG pro lamp. My first time using the builder gel, I, believe I put too thick of a layer on that leaked into my cuticles before curing, causing the edges to later lift, as they were not adhered to my nail. I will definitely be applying these tips. Next time I use my gel!

Sar M. November 18, 2023

Great tips! With lots of trial and error, it definitely is crucial to buff the nails down and while off the nail with 70% alcohol to enforce the shellac for long lasting nails! Thank you for sharing these great tips!

Jay November 16, 2023

Prep makes allllll the difference

Lucie November 13, 2023

Great tips to remember!

Melissa November 13, 2023

Great tips!

Steph November 12, 2023

Wonderful tips. Thank you. I usually try to take my polish off, file and shape my nails one day and then put the new polish on the next day. I think this gives the nails a chance to breathe a bit.

Alyce November 12, 2023

Love this! My nails always look great now.

Jessica Mootoo November 12, 2023

Thanks for the tips!! I loveeeee Bioseaweed gel polishes ❤️

AJ November 12, 2023

Super helpful article! Never neglect a good nail prep is the key for me!

Tania November 11, 2023

Using a brush to clean the edge on each layer applied helps reduce peeling. If gel polish got on skin, it will start peeling pretty fast

Julia November 11, 2023

Honestly, I have noticed a difference going from using 70% alcohol to a 99% alcohol as well. It’s a bit harder to find and I figured out that it’s usually kept behind the counter at the pharmacy, but it does seem to do a bit better at cleaning the surface of the nail. That being said, it can also dry out your nail a lot more so be careful with it if you have thin or brittle nails. I have noticed that my nails can be a bit more prone to chipping (yes, the nail underneath, not the gel polish on top!) so I try to be diligent with making sure I am using cuticle creams or oils after I finish my mani and during the days following, which I should probably do more consistently anyways!

Desiree November 11, 2023

Excellent tips BSG! Will keep these in mind from now on!

Christine November 11, 2023

I’m definitely guilty of #5… Just not sure how to live life without using nails to open stuff 🤣

Jenya November 10, 2023

I once painted my nails too thick and it lifted in 2 days. Less is more is true!!

Hazel November 10, 2023

Thanks for sharing good tips with us, very nice of you all. All the steps are very important, not to miss for sure if we want long lasting shellac nails

Annie November 10, 2023

Great tips, I’m new to doing my own nails and I was wondering why mine would start to peel after a week or so. Will definitely be trying some of these tips!!

Haley Passmore November 10, 2023

Always take the time to prep your nails – you’ll love the results !! Especially when you Bioseaweegel.ca

Maria November 10, 2023

Great article! Been loving BioSeaweed lately 😊

Daniella Riolo November 10, 2023

Having a good base, good top coat is also part of keeping the mani last ! I have different top coats depending if my client’s nails tend to break/bend etc. A nice tip for beginners, keep an angled brush close dipped in a bit of alcohol, wipe the sides if ever you’ve touched the skin . Choose pigmented colours especially for dark tones as they come out the best with thin layers.

JS November 10, 2023

Hope to win. Enjoy doing my own nails a d these are good tips.

Shannan November 10, 2023

Leave a comment