In a nutshell, Soak Off UV silicone gels are easy-to-apply-and-remove gels recommended particularly for curing on a natural nail. They are an excellent product in between a regular lacquers and gel or acrylic extensions on account of, inter alia, a wide range colour range of Soak Off gels. Add ons and typical extensions can also be performed on condition they are not too long.
Standard gels vs Soak Off gels
Soak Off gels are called ‘soft’ gels because their chemistry and structure varies from typical hard UV gels. Soft gels contain two monomers: one is 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (also called ‘HeMA – can be found in conventional gels) which provides adhesiveness and shine and the other – polyurethane that conventional gels do not contain – providing flexibility which gives you total control of the product and harmonizing the applied layer with the natural nail plate preventing any cracks and breakages when strained. This is one of the main soft gels advantages appreciated especially when curing, slightly extending or removing from a nail plate. Hard gels after curing become glass-glossy while soft gels become rough, which afterwards makes them easier to remove. Nail remover breaks bindings between gel mass monomers, which, in turn, peels the whole artificial nail off. Because of their structure Soak Offs need to be covered with a high-shine top coat layer to get a high shine but most of nail technicians do not find this inconvenient.
NOTICE: Applying a conventional gel along with any Soak Off will result in cracks. It is also not recommended to apply any Soak Off colour gel directly onto a natural nail plate – a dye will decrease gels adhesiveness therefore before applying colour gel, nail techs apply transparent Soak Off gel which acts as a base coat.
Soak Off removal
File the shine and soak a wipe for each nail with nail remover. Then place each wipe on a nail and wrap tinfoil round the fingers. Take it off after approximately 10 minutes and remove the Soak Off by rubbing the nail using the wipes. Remember: the thicker the layer of a gel is, the more time it will take for nail remover to work fully efficiently. However, the time can be reduced if you slightly heat a nail.
The article published in the 43rd issue of Paznokcie magazine (4/2009)