These $14.99 Nails Look Just Like a Professional Manicure More than 3x the Price

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These days, more and more people are looking for affordable manicures as salon prices continue to rise. According to Statista, even back in 2019, "Nail salons in the U.S. charged an average price of 51.29 U.S. dollars for the initial application of a full set of gel nails." 

Painting your nails yourself is always an option, but if you're like me, you might despise the chipping that inevitably follows that DIY approach. This has led plenty of women—myself included—to become curious about the beauty trend of press-on nails. Especially the viral Glamnetic nails.

Using nail glue and pre-made nail designs, press-on nails can adhere right to your fingernails and give you a just-left-the-salon look for less. Obviously, I couldn't wait to give them a try and review them for anyone else who might be interested.

Related: 40 Spring Nail Designs That Will Brighten Up Your Day

Cost of Press-On Nails

Glamnetic press-on nails start at $14.99. With nail salons in my area starting around $40 for a comparable manicure before leaving a tip, the idea of getting a professional look for a lot less $$ is appealing—and I'm not the only one who feels that way.

Reddit users have been sharing the cost of their manicures, and it's no wonder people are looking for more affordable options.

  • One Reddit user explained that up until 2020, she'd "do no chip gel manis every 2 weeks and pay about $65-70 after tip."

  • Another Redditor shared, "Honestly I stopped getting my nails done because it's getting expensive."

  • An independent nail artist wrote that she typically charges "$50 for a gel mani plus $10 for a removal."

Meanwhile, Glamnetic's nails are a fraction of the typical mani cost.

I've never gotten into the habit of having my nails done because of how expensive the salon is. And because I'm also hopeless at utilizing nail polish remover, I'd rather have nothing on my fingertips than stare at chipped polish for weeks after painting them myself.

So, the idea of trying the buzzy trend of press-on nails was intriguing to me. I didn't know what to expect, but—spoiler alert—I'm now completely obsessed.

What Are Glamnetic Press-On Nails?

Glamnetic is a popular, viral beauty brand that sells magnetic lashes as well as press-on nails. 

By simply using the glue that's provided in each kit, you can easily apply Glamnetic nails (that are already shaped and in fun colors) yourself at home. Inside the box are 15 options for each hand (30 in total).

Their press-on nail color options include pastel, matte, glossy, nude, multicolor, etc., and current shapes include almond, round, coffin and oval.

Glamnetic supplies including press-on nails, glue, a cuticle stick, an alcohol swab and a nail file<p>Courtesy Kelsey Pelzer</p>
Glamnetic supplies including press-on nails, glue, a cuticle stick, an alcohol swab and a nail file

Courtesy Kelsey Pelzer

How To Apply Glamnetic Press-On Nails

1. Prep

First, wash and dry your hands. Use an alcohol wipe (included in the Glamnetic box) on your natural nails.

2. Set Aside the Sizes You Need

There are many sizes included in the nail kit, so it's helpful to take some time and compare the available sizes to each fingernail and plan them out accordingly.

3. Apply Glue

Each box comes with a tube of glue that you can squeeze to apply the adhesive to the back of each Glamnetic press-on nail and on your natural nail.

"Do not directly apply nail glue to cuticles or surrounding skin," the box's instructions warn.

4. Place on Fingernail

Put it on the corresponding fingernail. Hold pressure against it for 10-20 seconds.

Continue this process for each nail.

Glamnetic Nails Review

The first pair of press-on nails I tried from Glamnetic were their "Short Almond" style in "Ballet Pink."

I meant to do these nails the night before my sister's wedding, but my kids' bedtimes kept getting pushed and it was never going to happen. The next morning, I woke up early and after getting ready, I realized I actually had 15 minutes before I had to hit the road. I looked at the Glamnetic box on the counter. These were supposed to be quick and easy, right?! I opened them up and decided to go all in—with the clock ticking.

Once you open the box, you can see various nail sizes inside and start matching them up to what finger will fit them best. There was a decent amount of second-guessing and double-checking from my end before I opened up the glue and got to work. 

All in all, it took me about 10 minutes to do both hands—including some filing and trimming of the nails once they were on, because the length felt a little too long for my preference.

I'm not going to lie—I spent most of the day happily tapping my nails against surfaces (much to the annoyance of those around me, I'm sure) and admiring the polished, elegant look.

That being said, I did run into a hiccup just a couple of days in, when my first press-on nail fell off. Looking back, I definitely hadn't used enough glue on that nail when I first put it on (that was a mistake I didn't repeat when I tried out a second Glamnetic nail set). Anyway, I simply grabbed the fallen-off nail and the tube of glue and put it back on easily. Then, this happened again a few days later with a different nail.

Some basic tasks—like putting on jeans—had taken some getting used to with these longer nails too. I was worried they would pop off every time I needed to open a can of seltzer or when I would be furiously typing away to meet a deadline. But they lasted exactly two weeks with no issues (besides those two nails coming off and reapplying them).

After the two-week mark, the press-on nails started loosening and coming off on their own, and it became a little addicting to help pop them off. (Technically, you're supposed to be more graceful about it and soak your nails in a bowl of hot water—I'll get to that later).

Once the press-on nails were all off, my natural nails did feel a little flimsier than I'd remembered. But after about two days, they were back to feeling normal. I was also so happy with how my natural nails looked. I have the unfortunate habit of picking at the tips of my nails, which means they're usually kept at a shorter length—but after having the Glamnetic nails on for a couple of weeks, my nails were longer, since I hadn't been able to pick at them during that time.

Then, I was ready to try it all over again.

I put on their "Short Round" style in "Lilac" next, and instantly loved the pastel hue. I applied more glue this time around (I probably put too much glue on them, honestly), and didn't run into any issues with one of them falling off until I was into my second full week of wearing them.

Only one nail came off on its own at this point, and I added more glue to it and reapplied it—just like I did with a couple of nails in my first set.

Throughout my third full week of wearing these, the press-on nails were still going strong. I had a surgery coming up and I wanted to remove the nails before then, so I decided to try the recommended method of removal by soaking my hands in warm water for 10 minutes. This was...unsuccessful. (But I have more thoughts about this later.)

If the nails do not loosen, Glamnetic recommends re-soaking them. I tried again the next day and also wiggled them back and forth on my own to try to loosen them (which is not recommended, as the box specifically says, "Do not force removal").

I was able to get all of the nails off and the "flimsy" feeling in my natural fingernails did return for a couple of days like the first time. (It probably didn't help that I had been trying to pop the nails off before they were ready.) However, like before, they once again felt strong/normal after just a couple of days.

Related: 8 Best Tinted Moisturizers for Mature Skin, According to Professional Makeup Artists

How Long Do Glamnetic Nails Last?

Glamnetic says that their nail glue typically holds press-on nails for up to two weeks. I found this to be true, and was able to get at least three weeks of use with my second set after only regluing one nail during that period.

One Redditor has shared her tips for making them last even longer than two weeks, saying: "Mine usually last at least three weeks and even then there are is minimal lifting, I have to soak and pry them off. I size the press ons first to make sure they fit perfectly, [and] will file down the sides if needed."

How To Remove Glamnetic Nails

Wondering how to take off Glamnetic nails? On the back of the boxes, the instructions say, "Soak nails in warm water for 10 minutes or until glue loosens," and then, "Gently peel Glamnetic nails starting from the side. Do not force removal, re-soak nails if required."

These were the steps that I took during my second experience of wearing them, but I didn't have a lot of success at that time. However, while looking at tips online—including from the brand itself—I've seen some additional recommendations that likely make a big difference.

Glamnetic has a YouTube tutorial that has a few more details on how to best remove the nails (the temperature being "hot" vs. "warm" and adding a couple of extra things to the water before soaking).

1. Soak Your Hands in Hot Water

The water should have soap and oil in it as well. Soak your fingers for 10 minutes.

2. Use a Cuticle Stick to Help Pop Them Off

The Glamnetic nail kit comes with a cuticle stick, so you can use that (or an extra nail from the box) to help get the press-on nails off.

I'll definitely be tweaking my removal approach for my next round of press-ons!

My Final Thoughts

I'll definitely continue wearing these nails—I've truly loved them and have gotten so many compliments on how they look. And shout out to a fellow shopper at my favorite thrift store who said she was obsessed with my nails, and when I told her where they were from, she showed off her own set of Glamnetic press-on nails that she was wearing. Girlhood, am I right?

Where To Buy Glamnetic Nails

Glamnetic press-on nails are available on the brand's website, Amazon and other retailers like Target, Kohl's, Sephora, ULTA and more.

I would also recommend purchasing the "brush on" nail glue that Glamnetic has available. The glue that comes with each package works just fine, but I love the idea of making the application even easier with a brush.

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