In recent years, press-on nails have had one of the most impressive glow-ups. Chillhouse has replaced the old untrustworthy drugstore stick-ons that popped off minutes after application, leaving your nails damaged. Their modern, artsy designs not only match my saved nail inspiration IG folder, but they’re also surprisingly sturdy and come with nontoxic glue that won’t ruin nails. If you’re ready to try the editor-approved tips, here are some pointers for smooth application and removal so you don’t make the same mistakes I did.
Chillhouse Nails Application
The set includes 24 nails (to ensure the perfect fit for each nail), non-toxic glue, a dual-sided file-buffer hybrid, and a cuticle stick. In other words, everything you’ll need for the best possible application.
To begin, I recommend using the included or your preferred tools to push cuticles back and buff nails. Remember to wash your hands or use alcohol to ensure that nothing is getting in the way of your nail and tips. To avoid any confusion, try the nails on for size and lay out the perfect fit for each finger (in order from thumb to pinky).
2. Use glue
I applied a thin, even layer of glue to the back of the press-ons and a more generous amount to my nail, waited 3 seconds, then applied the press-ons, holding each nail down for at least 30 seconds with even pressure, as instructed by Chillhouse. The more adhesive you use, the longer they will last.
Pro-tip: If you want the nails to last 7-10 days, apply a generous amount of glue to your natural nail in an even layer. I was a little too light-handed, and a couple of nails came off unexpectedly.
After you’ve applied the nails, you can file them to achieve the desired look. I skipped this part because the oval shape was the perfect length for me—not too long, not too short.
4. You’re all set!
The nail adheres in 30 seconds with no additional waiting time. I applied my nails without incident right before packing for a flight the next morning.
Chillhouse nail removal
The key to removing Chillhouse nails is to wait for them to gape a little at the sides or edges. If your nails aren’t yet ready but you are, the first step of soaking should suffice.
Begin by soaking your nails in warm water. Chillhouse suggests adding a gentle soap or oil to the water; I chose the oil route to nourish both my cuticles and skin.
Attention: Acetone can also work, but it can damage the press-ons. If you intend to reuse the tips, I would avoid this method.
2. Take away
After soaking the nails for a few minutes, wiggle the nails off with the included (or your favorite) cuticle stick. To avoid damaging the Chillhouse nails, go slowly and gently. I’ll admit that I broke a few nails in my haste to pull them off. Again, if you want to reuse the nails, be as gentle as possible when removing them.
3. You’re done!
Following removal, I gave myself a quick clean-up, filing, buffing, and pushing cuticles back. Not only is the removal process quick and easy, but you’re left with nails that are undamaged and free of press-ons or glue.
The final decision
If an Instagram-worthy manicure for $16 without going to a salon sounds too good to be true, I’m here to tell you that it is! The nails are incredibly simple to apply and surprisingly strong! If you intend to leave them on for an extended period of time or while traveling, I’d bring the glue with you just in case. I had a couple of nails pop off due to user error rather than a nail default. It may take some trial and error to find the perfect glue ratio, but once you do, you can have a salon-worthy mani (with endless compliments) in minutes!