8 Common Nail Stamping Mistakes & Easy Tips to Fix Them

Nail Stamping Mistakes & Easy Tips to Fix Them
Nail Stamping Mistakes & Easy Tips to Fix Them

Nail Stamping is one of the quickest and easiest ways to get salon-quality nail art from the comfort of your own home.

But if you are new to Nail Stamping there are a few very frustrating issues that you might face.

So in this article, I will go through the most common stamping mistakes and more importantly how you can avoid them.

1- Using the Wrong Nail Stamper

Having a bad nail stamper is one of the biggest mistakes you can make when you are now starting nail stamping.

You should avoid very firm stampers these tend to be hard to work with, instead, in my opinion very soft Marshmallow stampers are usually the best for beginners.

You can click here to learn more about stampers and about my top recommended nail stampers. If you are now getting into nail stamping this article is for you.

Now if you already have a stamper and it is not doing a good job picking up and stamping the design, you can always prime the head of the stamper to make it work.

How to Fix or Prime a Nail Stamper

Different types of Stampers are primed differently and for different reasons.

And it’s important to note that not all stampers need priming so I would advise only attempt to prime a stamper if it doesn’t work or after awhile it stops working.

  • The first step in priming any nail stamper is to wash it with soap and warm water and then let it dry
  • Once the stamper is completely dry you can use either a lint roller or tape to remove any residue.
  • Finally, you can try the stamper out again.

Now only if the stamper still doesn’t work you can then use the rough side of a washing sponge to gently buff your stamper. Then after buffing the stamper use a lint roller or tape to remove any sediment on the stamper.

The last priming method you can try is using a small amount of acetone to clean your stamper, this should be your last resort. If you don’t want to use acetone you can try using some rubbing alcohol.

1- Soft and Squishy Marshmallow Stampers shouldn’t be cleaned with acetone or buffed, if they do give you any trouble trying washing these stampers with water and soap.

2- Clear Stampers should never be primed with acetone if you do so the stamper will get cloudy. Instead, you can wash these stampers with soap and water and if needed you can gently buff them with a washing sponge.

3- Firm Opaque Stampers are usually made of rubber and can be primed using any method – since these stampers are very durable and they usually need a fair amount of priming before using.

2- Using Low-Quality Stamping Plates

A common mistake that a lot of people make is that they buy the cheapest stamping plates – thinking that all stamping plates are all the same.

As the saying goes you usually get what you pay for.

Very cheap stamping plates tend to have shallow grooves which makes it hard for enough polish to get within the ridges so these plates tend to give you a very light design. Whilst well-engraved plates usually have deep grooves to hold enough polish for a bright print.

So if you bought really cheap stamping plates and the designs are coming out very light, consider investing in some high-quality ones. I have an entire article on stamping plates which features my top recommendations, you can click to read it here.

3- Using The Wrong Nail Polish

Now even if you have bad stamping plates and a poor nail stamper you can overcome them by either using a good stamping polish or by making your polish thicker.

Stamping polishes have a lot more colored pigments and they are thicker so they are easier to stamp with and they create more brilliant nail art.

You can click here to learn more about how awesome stamping polishes are and my recommendations for the best stamping polish.

But if you are in a hurry you can always make your regular polish thicker to make it stamp better. I have an article that will guide you step by step how to do so, click here to read it.

Bonus Tips

I always cover my stamping nail art with a coat of no-smudge top coat to prevent my designs from smearing and to them last longer. You can click here to see the price of a no-smudge top coat on Amazon that was specially made for stamping.

If you want you can also use a Nail Bonder Base Coat to make the imprint stick on better to your nails. Orly has a really good bonder you can click to see the price on Amazon.

All you need to do is apply a coat of the bonder over your nails and allow it dry, before stamping a design on.

4- Not Cleaning Your Stampers or Stamping Plates Properly

You need to properly clean your stamping plates and stamper each time time after using them.

I am not gonna go in too much detail here instead you can click to read my guide on how to clean nail stampers and stamping plates correctly.

5- Bad Stamping Techniques

There is no right or wrong stamping technique. Instead, throughout my years of stamping I have found that every nail stamper works a bit differently and various designs some times require different techniques.

My advice is that you try a few different methods out – practice runs on a plain white surface to see what works best for you and your nails stamper.

Generally most stampers require gentle movements. Some work best by simply pressing the stamper down gently whilst some perform better using a slight rolling technique.

6- Moving Too Slow

When doing stamping you need to move quickly. If you move too slowly your polish will dry and make the print harder to either pick up or stamp on, so the faster you can move the better.

7- Not Scraping Properly

Scraping is where you have to use the firm card to scrap the polish on the plates so as to fill the etchings with polish.

I usually try to do one or two smooth scrapes per design – the less scraping you do the brighter your print will be since every time you scrape you also remove polish from the grooves of the plates.

8- Not Practicing Enough

My last piece of advice on nail stamping is that you need to practice, don’t expect to master it on the first go – try different techniques and watch a few tutorials, and eventually you will get a hang of it.

I found a really good tutorial that you can start with you can see it below.

Citation & References Used

FAQ Clear Jelly Stamper

FAQ MoYou Nails

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