How to make press-on nails: everything you need to know

Need a step-by-step guide for how to make press-on nails?

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Welcome my lovelies.

In this post, I’m going to walk you through everything you need to know to make your own stunning press-on nails.

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We’ll go over everything you need for making your own press-on nails, where to get it from, and how to make them step by step with plenty of tips and tricks and tips.

Sound good?

Let’s get into how to make your own press-on nails.

What do you need to make press-on nails?

First things first.

What do you need to make press on nails?

Here’s a list of tools and equipment you’ll need.

I’ve included all the basic stuff you need to make the nails themselves, but also a few items you’ll need if you are doing this to make money.

The fake nails themselves come in a lot of different shapes and sizes.

press on nail shapes

So you don’t need to do much filing.

You can get coffin, almond, ballerina, stiletto nails, or any shape you like in a variety of lengths.

You can also cut them down with tip cutters if you need to.

A lot of the nail art stuff is optional.

It depends on what kind of designs you want to create.

Now that you know what you need, let’s move on to how to make fake nails step by step.

How to make press on nails step by step

Making your own press-on nails is easy and fun.

Here are the steps you need to follow to make custom press-on nails.

Prep your workstation

prep your work area

Make sure you have all the tools and materials you need before you start.

It’s also a good idea to lay down a towel or something similar to protect your surfaces.

Stick the glue dots to your display/painting stand

Using the glue dots helps to hold the nails in place so that you don’t have to hold them when you are painting.

Stick the sizes of press-on nails you want to the stands

It’s important to do this facing towards you and in the correct order to avoid confusion.

File and reshape any rough edges at the free edge

You don’t always need to do this, but sometimes you will find a jagged bit of plastic that needs smoothing out.

You may also want to reshape the nails a little but that’s up to you.

Buff the tips to remove any shine

Not everyone does this but I find that it’s essential to stop the gel polish from peeling off.

You could also apply a gel base coat if you want but I don’t and I find that my nails are absolutely fine without it.

Apply a coat of gel polish and cure for 30 – 60 seconds

Curing time depends on what type of lamp you’re using.

So follow the instructions for proper curing (30 seconds in LED, 2 minutes for UV lamps).

Apply a second coat of gel polish and cure for 30- 60 seconds.

Don’t forget to cap the free edge while you’re applying the gel polish.

Use a brush and a dotting tool to apply any painted nail art details and cure

This is where you can get creative with painting on tips, prints, etc.

Apply gems and bling using a wax pencil if desired

The wax pencil makes applying gems a lot quicker and easier.

Add a top coat

This seals everything in and adds shine.

Depending on the design, you may want to add a topcoat before you apply your gems.

That’s it! all that’s left to do now is sit back and admire your gorgeous nails!

Make your own press-on-nails kit

If you want to make a kit to sell then you’ll need a few extra bits and pieces to make everything look professional.

A good press-on nail kit should include instructions, promotional materials, and of course pretty packaging.

You may also want to send out a sizing kit or sizing instructions.

How to paint press-on nails

how to paint press on nails

There are 2 main ways that you can paint your press-on nails.

The first is to apply gel polish just like you would in a salon and cure with a lamp.

This works very well but it can be time-consuming.

If you want to speed up the process, you could buy a makeup airbrush kit for spraying your press-ons in large batches.

How to hold fake nails while painting them

painting press on nails

You don’t want to be touching your nails while painting, so here’s what to do.

Get a display stand and some adhesive glue dots.

Stick the fake nails to the display stand using the crafting glue dots and then you can paint them without having to hold them at all!

Can you make money selling press on nails?


Press-on nails are big business.

You need creative designs and an efficient production method to succeed.

You could make good money selling press-on nails if you find the right niche market and price them correctly.

How much money can you make selling press on nails?

This really depends on how popular your designs are and how well you market yourself.

If you’re just starting out, it’s probably best to sell them for around $20 a set.

As you become more well-known, you can start to charge more.

Do you need a license to sell press-on nails?

No, you don’t need a license to make and sell press-on nails.

You don’t need to be a licensed nail tech to do this as you are not working directly with the public.

However, it’s always best to check with your local authorities before setting up any kind of business.

Where to sell press-on nails

Here are some ideas for where you can sell your press-ons.

  • Offline: local beauty salons, markets, festivals, and fairs
  • Online: your own website, Etsy, Amazon, eBay
  • Social media: Instagram, Facebook, Twitter

What price range should you sell press-on nails for?

This really depends on the quality of your product and how much time and effort you put into each set.

I would suggest pricing them based on covering the cost of materials and labor and making a small profit to begin with.

You could also sell them in bulk for a discounted price if you have a lot of the same design.

How to package press on nails

My favorite way to package my nail sets is to use cotton-filled jewelry boxes like this.

They are super cute and look great with the nails inside.

You can bulk buy in lots of different designs too.

Press on nail packaging ideas

press on nails being made

You could also try making a pretty card and sticking your DIY press-on nails to it using glue dots.

You can then package the whole thing in a clear cellophane wrap or a ziplock-style bag.

See-through boxes and even gift bags can also work well.

Press on nails business supplies

You don’t need a fancy supplier to get DIY press-on nails supplies.

You can find everything you need on Amazon or even at your local beauty supply store.

I recommend buying the tips, instruction cards, and even the packaging online.

Where to buy blank press-on nails

Amazon is the best place to get blank press-on nails in bulk.

You can get them super cheap and they have a great selection.

Makarrt and Kokoist are two of the most popular brands.

They come in every size, shape, and length imaginable so you should easily find what you’re looking for.

Press on nail sizing

How important is sizing for press-on nails?

Sizing is very important when it comes to press-on nails.

Especially if you’re selling press-on nails.

You need to make sure that you have the right sizes and enough copies of the most popular sizes too.

I have a whole article dedicated to press on nail sizes and how they work here.

You should check it out if you want detailed info on sizing up press-ons and measuring your own nails.

Press on nail business names

sprayed press on nails

Your press on nail business should have a name that reflects your unique style and what you do.

It’s probably a good idea to use a recognizable nail-related word like ‘nails’ or ‘tips’ in your business name.

Some examples of cool press on nail business names are:

  • Nailedby…(your name)
  • Custom claws
  • Terrific talons
  • Coffin up diamonds

Final thoughts

So there you have it!

You now know everything there is to know about how to make your own press-on nails!

Whether you want to make press-on nails from scratch or start a press-on nail business, I hope that you found the ideas in this post useful and inspiring.

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  • Phoebe Meadows

    Phoebe Meadows is a self-proclaimed nail addict, always on the lookout for the latest trends and techniques. When she's not creating stunning nail designs, you can find her researching the latest nail care products or experimenting with new techniques.