VIDEO: Classic French Manicure with Gel Polish

I wore my nails natural with just a clear coat for a couple of days this week and was enjoying seeing the growth. I decided to do a classic French manicure to enhance the look, and made a video of the process.  It’s really not as hard as it seems.  The key is to use a brush and some alcohol to perfect the smile line.  Enjoy!

Products used in this video:

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29 Responses

  1. Stacy says:

    I wish I had a steady enough hand to get a clean, crisp smile line. Is it possible to wipe off the tacky layer and use tip guides? Thanks! :)

  2. natasha says:

    I would love to see a filing tutorial. Your nails are evenly squared off. They look great!

    • Andrea says:

      Thanks. I literally just file them straight across the top and then use a buffer to smooth the edges when I’m done.

      • natasha says:

        Do you file looking down at them or with your palm facing you? Some of my nail beds are crooked and some of my other nails grow heavier on one side than the other, so I can never get them to all look straight. Any tips?

        • Andrea says:

          I file with my palms facing me. I only do my own nails, so unfortunately I’m not much help providing guidance on filing someone else’s nails :)

  3. Elina says:

    Brush with acetone for crisp lines?!
    I use a brush which I put in some gel at first, then clean excess gel from brush and afterwards I make crisp lines with that brush. It is my formula! :)

  4. Molly says:

    Your website is extremely helpful, so glad I found it!! I love the look of a classic french manicure, but mine yellows after a couple of days and starts to get darker spots on the corners and tip of my nail. I believe the problem is probably from my top it off (I use Gelish as well). I currently use the sleek/sheek white for my tips (I will take your advice and order the one you use in this video). Have you ever experienced this? I’m guessing I just need to replace the one I currently have (hesitate to do that as it is only 1 year old). Any ideas or advice is greatly appreciated!! Thanks.

    • Andrea says:

      I’m sorry, I don’t know for certain what would cause that. It could be the Sheek White because it does have a bit of a yellow-ish tone to it and isn’t as pure white as Artic Freeze.

  5. Tashia says:

    Do you do any phBonds and nail primer/prep comparisons? I’m noticing that some sellers via eBay mix and match. Do you know if that really makes a difference to the foundation of everything?

    • Andrea says:

      I personally don’t think they are that critical. I normally just clean my nails with alcohol before applying the foundation. They are all alcohol based. The key is just to ensure that your nails are dehydrated and free of oils.

  6. Stephanye Haller says:

    How do you know how long to cure them for. I have the Starpro Led lamp and it just has a 30 sec. and 60 sec. timer on it. How do you know besides looking at the clock how long they have been in. I can’t grasp it. I got it for a Christmas gift but I can’t find any website (besides yours) that remotely comes close to giving me any help. So if I can’t figure this out back to goes.

    • Andrea says:

      I would think your lamp should turn off automatically after 30 or 60 seconds depending on which timer setting you’re using. Follow the instructions on the polish bottle for curing times. Most LED polishes only require a 30 second cure. Sometimes darker colors may require a little longer.

  7. Priscilla* says:

    What type of led lamp do you have? I’m shopping around and I’m totally confused on how strong of a lamp I’ll need :) thank you in advance! Love your videos.

  8. Erika says:

    I just discovered your site, and you have so many helpful videos.

    Your hands and fingernails are sooo pretty, by the way.

  9. Lisa says:

    Hi Andrea,
    I’ve read that dry brushing can help with painting the tip. What’s your opinion on that?would it make a difference if I wiped the entire tacky surface off as opposed to simply “dry brushing” the tip before applying the white Gelish?
    Thanks so much!

  10. Maya says:

    Hi ! Do you have a color in mind to replace Artic Freeze for a more natural looking french ? Even Sheek White seems “too white” for my taste :)

    Thank you !

  11. Helen says:

    Hi there

    Just been watching your french manicure video and it’s helped a lot. Was just wondering I have just purchased the French manicure trio kit that inc artic white, simple sheer and little princess. Do you normally apply the White tips then the second nail colour whether it be simple sheer or little princess? Any tips is greatly appreciated. Thank you.

  12. Gaby says:

    Hi i was wondering what type of uv/led light you use? And where you bought it.

  13. Selmah says:

    how I can download this movies?

  14. Tanya says:

    I have been trying to achieve the black tip french and I cannot find a good, opaque black. Any suggestions? Also, I purchased a dotter/brush off Amazon similar to the one used in your tutorial but that brush is very jagged and produced uneven lines. What brush do you use?

    • Andrea says:

      DIY Hard Nails black is the most opaque I’ve found so far. I also hear that LeChat’s black is amazing, but I don’t own it. There is a link for the brush that I used in the article above. Thanks!

  15. Lynette Ford says:

    I am so frustrated just beginning I want to learn the smile line I like a good classic french nails. I am trying to improve my appearance it’s a struggle.