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Can you grow long natural nails?!

These are both my natural nails!!! I started off with the short nails and within a few months- they’re the long nails!!

So how the heck did I do it?! Two words:


If you haven’t heard of builder gel, let me explain! Builder gel, or BG as we call it in the nail community, is a thick viscosity gel that’s used as an overlay on your natural nails. It’s considered a soft gel because you can soak it off, but it cures hard. You can also use it to make extensions on your natural nails WITHOUT any tips!

I’ve been using builder gel as an overlay on my natural nails for over 3.5 years now. And let me tell you- it’s a game changer!! I can grow my nails long whenever I want, cut them short whenever I want, or do length extensions…. Whenever I want!

Here are some really important things to know about builder gel:

  1. You need a lamp to cure it. Not a flash cure small lamp, but a full size curing lamp.

  2. Leaving uncured gel on your skin or nails can lead to gel allergies, so you have to be careful how you apply it and make sure to fully cure it!

  3. Brand matters! Using low quality builder gels with hema can lead to gel allergies. Do your research and get a high quality hema free brand!

  4. Thinner layers are better. When you apply the builder gel too thick, it’s not going to fully cure. I like to apply thin layers so the light can cure them easier!

  5. If any gel gets on your skin, immediately wipe it off with an angled clean up brush and isopropyl alcohol.

  6. NEVER EVER cure gel on your skin or cuticles.

  7. Nail prep BEFORE application is key! Don’t forget to use a Dehydrator and Primer (one specifically for gels that leaves a sticky residue for adhering the gel to your natural nails).

One of my favorite things about builder gel is that you don’t need to soak your nails in acetone anymore! You can easily do fill on builder gel! I like to use an e-file for my builder gel fills, but if you’re not comfortable using one, you can also use a hand file. When you do a fill, you want to make sure that you’ve filed off any lifting of the builder gel before you do the fill. If you don’t file off the lifting and just apply the builder gel over top of the lifted areas, moisture can get trapped underneath and can develop what’s called a greenie. This is what the nail community calls the fungus that develops when moisture gets trapped under nail enhancements. And you definitely don’t want that!

Here are 2 videos I’ve done on builder gel! This one is how to apply a builder gel overlay. And this one is how to do a builder gel fill.

My go to builder gels are from OG Dip Powder here. They’re hema free and fantastic to use!

If you still have questions, leave me a comment!! Thanks for joining me today nail crew!!

*this post contains no affiliate links, but other posts contain affiliate links that I make a small commission on

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