Hi, hey and hello! Hope you’re having a thoroughly fab Thursday – whatcha got planned for the weekend? I’ll be mostly dealing with domestics, spending time with the fam and having a good ‘un. And, speaking of ‘good uns’, over the last few months I’ve been trying and testing various, budget, FALSE NAILS. Today I’m going to reveal whether any of them ‘nailed it’, compare them in the wearability, comfort and value stakes, share the pros and cons and, of course, announce which of the budget falsies I tried came out on top. Enjoy!
A trip to the salon to get yourself a gleaming set of Gels or Acrylics is an on-going and, therefore costly, investment of time and money. Maybe getting your nails done is your ‘you time’, and so, you’re happy to commit, afterall the results should be on point cos they’re professionals. Salon nails should last until infill time (approx 1 month) and, thanks to new innovations and techniques, even really close up, they look real.
But, what if you don’t want to commit? Maybe the ‘permanence’ of salon nails is not a practical or affordable option for you, but there are times when you want to glam up your hands; fortunately, there are alternatives and as I’ve road tested three of them for you, the results will, hopefully, help you decide if you want to give them a go and which of these alternative falsies will work for you and to make it even easier I’ll pop all the necessary links below. If you are a seasoned DIY falsie Queen or King, you might find the tips & thoughts, included for each category of nail I tested, useful.
The Pre-Glued Press Ons: Intro, Pros, Cons, Tips and Thoughts
Pre-Glued Press On Nails are available in a wide variety of shapes, colours & designs so you should be able find a set that you like I picked up a set of press ons from B & M Bargains (a UK retail chain) and they cost £4. That coin got me 20 of each of the four different colours/finishes – that’s 80 Nails in total and at just 5p per nail, these are the most inexpensive of those I tested.
- Uber affordable
- Easy, quick, clean, fuss-free, no-skill-required application which makes them great for falsie first-timers or nails in a rush
- Temporary – fab for special occasions & shorter wear times
- Lightweight – the most comfortable falsies of those I road tested
- True ‘Ready to Wear’ falsies – just open the pack and pop them on
- Easy, pain free, no damage to your real nails, removal
- Bit of a pain to store – they have to stay in their trays due to the glue, otherwise they WILL stick together
- On (close) inspection their falsie-ness may be apparent
- 4 days maximum wear time (Began losing nails seven hours after application)
- Nail widths can be a bit random – but I did manage to find my fits
- Some designs fade and/or chip
TIPS AND THOUGHTS
If you need to file the pre-glued nails do it AFTER you’ve applied them, and be very gently. If you file before sticking them on the false nail dust will get into the glue and they won’t adhere to your natural nails properly. Giving your natural nails a LIGHT file (on the surface of the nail) and brushing off the ‘dust’ will give your pre-glued falsies a better base to stick to. I like the pre-glued nails for the speed and ease of application, and, for a fast, passable ‘mani’ look for a night out, these are a good choice. Plus there was no damage to my natural nails from either the short-wear time or removing them , which is a bonus.
After testing, I would recommend these for newcomers to falsies, for last minute nights out & special occasions. I now keep a couple of sets of pre-glued falsies in my beauty stash for these ‘social emergencies’.
The Ready to Wear, Glue Ons – Intro, Pros, Cons, Tips and Thoughts
There are various brands of Ready to Wear Glue On Nails available both on the High Street and Online and most are very affordable. I tried and tested Primark’s (UK retail chain) PS brand RTWs but I have used others too. The PS nails vary in price according to style and finish: the least expensive ones I tried were £1.50 (almost 6p per nail) whilst the most expensive were £3.50 (14p per nail) and a set of PS RTWs usually contains 24 nails. There’s a huge selection of nails available, so finding your faves and fits shouldn’t be too difficult.
- Fairly easy to apply – but some skill is required
- Very wide range of shapes, lengths, styles, designs and colours
- Inexpensive – the more elaborate the more coin you’ll need
- They have that ‘real’ look and if applied correctly they can easily pass for Salon talons!
- Durable – they don’t tend to chip, fade or break
- Longevity – usually stay put for 7-10 days, but can last much longer
- Comfortable, medium weighted nails
- Easy to file and cut, if necessary, either before (to assist fit) or after application
- Glue is usually included
- RTWs take longer to apply
- Can be messy to apply (I’ve stuck my fingers togther, more than once, and glued nails to my makeup station/dining table too – so be careful).
- Application requires some skill, but gets easier with practice
- If the nails ‘ping off’ it can be painful!!!
- Removal takes time and isn’t very kind to your natural nails as the acetone nail varnish remover needed is quite drying
- The glue included can be a bit hit and miss
- Because of the longevity, dirt can collect behind the tips, or, occasionally work its way between the falsies and your natural nail
TIPS AND THOUGHTS
As with pre-glued nails, give the glue something to hold on to by LIGHTLY filing the surface area of your natural nails. Take some time finding your fits, because once they’re on, they’ll be on for a while, so it’s worth taking your time at the application stage. Keep any spare RTWs, you can use them to create some very individual, extra looks by choosing different designs (of the same shape and length) and wearing them together. If you like a design but the nail is too long for you, you can cut them down (before application) to make the nails more practical. Cut the falsies at the BASE, using either nail clippers or specialised falsie cutters, file to smooth away any jagged edges, then apply as normal.
If your chosen falsies have embellishments (such as gems etc) you can reduce the likelihood of losing any decorative decals by applying a couple of THIN coats of either clear varnish or a good top coat over the entire falsies once they’re on and the glue has dried. Use the glue sparingly to reduce the chance of the falsies ‘lifting’ and I prefer, having experimented, to apply the glue to the falsie, then waiting about 30 seconds before applying the falsies to my own nail.
Overall, if you want staying power, to play and be a bit creative but have limited mani skills and/or just want to apply and go, RTWs are a great choice. These falsies give you some creative scope, together with convenience and provide a fab opportunity to build on your nail tech and creative skills. I love Primark’s PS range of falsies, given the value and choice, I dont think they can be beaten!
The Plain, Glue On False Nails – Intro, Pros, Cons, Tips and Thoughts
This type of full cover, Plain, Glue On False Nails are widely available, in stores and online, usually in packs of 100 or more. Different brands offer differing lengths, nail shapes and ‘colours’ although the contents of each pack will contain nails that are uniform. Colour wise the choices include ‘white’, ‘clear’ (ie completely see-through), ‘French’ (from full-on bright white tips to a less obvious and mimicking ‘real nail’ colour), ‘cream’ or ‘almond’ off white options, and some that are labled ‘natural’. Some are more curved (across the width and down the length) than others, my preference is a less curved width. Despite the variety and the brands’ ‘descriptive’ names I simply call them plain.
The prices of these packs, like the number of falsies included in the box, varies a lot! I’ve seen packs of 50 plain nails for 99p, but – to give you a better dea – packs of 100 decent, usable, plain nails cost anywhere between approximately £2 to over £20. When buying these I generally go mid-range price wise. The plain falsies I tested for this blog (pictured) cost me £7.99 for a pack of 100,(almost 8p per nail) including glue, are white and were ordered off the interwebs. With plain falsies it really is a case of ‘you pays your money and takes your choice’ as far as price goes, the colour and type you choose is, obvs, down to your personal preference.
- Fairly easy to apply – some skills needed
- More likely to find your exact fits due to the number and various sizes in the packs
- Allows for creative and artistic freedom and experimentation
- Utilise your faves from your nail varnish/polish collection
- Embellishments can be added
- Plain nails can be a stepping stone to ‘at home’ Gel and Acrylic Nails
- Relatively inexpensive
- Widely available
- They have durability and staying power
- If the application and finish are good plain falsies can look like salon talons
- Can be an expensive mistake if you buy a large quantity pack only to find you don’t like the style, shape, or length etc.
- Extra steps are needed to complete the nails
- Application/finishing can be time consuming, especially if you get all nail arty
- Removal can take time too and the use of acetone may dry your natural nails
- If one of your plains pings off it could be ouchy!
TIPS AND THOUGHTS
As with the other nails mentioned, file your natural nails for an improved glue base. Don’t be tempted to keep the full length if they are very long: I think super long nails look false, regardless of how good the application and paint job is – plus length is not only often impractical, but can cause stress and damage to your nail bed/natural nails. You can trim either the bottom ( to reduce length) or the top edge (to change the shape if you are more proficient) of plain nails. If you get bored with a particular style, but still have quite a few nails in your pack, ask another ‘nail queen or king’ friend if they want to swap? (You could also swap/borrow/nail varnishes with them to mix your looks up – without spending any coin). Alternatively purchase different styles of plains together (this often saves on postage and packing) so that you have different styles, colours and lengths, in your falsie stash to suit your mood.
With regard to finishes, you can go as crazy as your imagination allows. You can buy nail art kits or utilise other things for decorative purposes: news, tissue, tracing and other types of paper make for great mosaic nail designs. Re – use beads, jewels and chain links from broken jewelery to create nails that would give Jeffree Star a run for his money! Then there’s special effect polishes, stamps, transfers and if you are not sure how to use any of these nail art products, there’s loads of tutorials on YouTube to help you out. My advice is two-fold – 1. Experiment, play & try different things, and 2. Enjoy it & don’t give up if something doesn’t work, just keep playing.
Final thoughts and revealing which nails I prefer and would recommend
I’m not one for sitting on the fence, but . . . I think there’s a place for all of these nails in your stash if, like me, you don’t want wear falsies all the time. Also if you have the kind of job or lifestyle where falsies are not a practical, full-time accessory then any of these nails are servicable, depending your nail skills level and how quickly you need to remove them – simply remember my pros, cons, tips and thoughts when deciding which ones to go for.
If, however, we were playing the ‘If I could only keep one’ tag in relation to false nails then I would, without hesitation, choose to keep Primark PS RTW Nails, cos I often suffer from artistic laziness, lack time to be creative and just love them as a value for money product, and would be happy to recommend them too.
I’m sorry there is no clear ‘winner’, too tough and close to call, but I hope you’ve enjoyed reading as much as I have writing this, and have found it useful.
As always, thanks for joining me on this slightly damp, cold Thursday evening, I really do appreciate it. I will be back on Saturday with, and at the risk of sounding like the intro to Monty Python, “something completely different” – My Easy Everyday Body Care Routine. It’d be great if you were here too, in the blogosphere, at, shall we say 3.30pm?Oooh and it’s payday tomorrow, so you can expect a bit of a haul in the quite close future. Until next time, take care
Entirely Beauty on Social Media
- EB Facebook Page
- EB on Twitter
- Get LINKEDIN to EB
- Catch EB’s ‘Grams on Insta
- Have a look see at EB’s Pintrest Boards.
In Case You Missed it:
☆ ☆ ☆ Everything you need to know about the FABFITFUN Subscription Box ☆ ☆ ☆
Other Useful, Nail Related Links:
- Superdrug’s range of Pre Glued Press Ons
- Fragrance Direct Press Ons
- Press Ons – EBAY
- Primark RTWs and Nail Polish (6 pages – happy browsing)
- EBay – Plain Glue On packs various shapes/colours etc
- Elegant Touch Bumper Pack Plain Glue Ons (mixed nail shapes)
- Rio Ultimate Nail Art Kit (includes embellishments, polish, brushes and dotters etc.,