6 common reasons your gel manicure may peel off!

1. Flawed cuticle preparation

One's gel manicure may peel off due to improper cuticle preparation! If one's cuticles are not pushed back enough or cut around the corners, this may lead to the gel lacquer being improperly applied to the skin. Unfortunately, one's skin is not a good enough base for gel compared to the nail bed, and the gel can begin to peel off.  

2. Hydrated nails

Believe it or not, nails with excess hydration can cause your gel manicure to peel.  During a typical gel manicure, either alcohol and/or a nail dehydrator is used to dehydrate the nail.  The primary purpose of dehydration is to improve gel or polish curing by removing both water and natural oils. Natural oils can cause the gel manicure to not properly bond to the nail.  

3. Bad LED/UV lamp

Following application of gel lacquer during the manicure, an LED/UV lamp is used to cure the polish.  However; an old, faulty lamp can cause the gel manicure to not cure properly.  

4. An ignored chipped nail

As annoying as it may be, please take care of your chipped nails immediately either by using an in-home remedy or visiting your local nail technician.  We recommend filing the the chip as soon as possible  and applying a clear top coat to seal it.  The top coat will help prevent further chipping of the nail.  Ultimately chipped nails can lead to improper adhesion of the lacquers to your nail plate.  

5. Too Thick

A thick coating of gel lacquer is harder to cure under the UV/led lamps.  As a result, you may see your gel manicure not last as long as you'd like :(

6. Peeling off your own gel manicure

Don't peel off your gel manicure on your own.  Although you may want it off now, removing the gel improperly can lead to your nails becoming weaker and more brittle.  Subsequently, the next time you get a gel manicure the adhesion between nail and gel will not work as well due to the weaker nail plate.  We recommend visiting your local nail technician anytime you want to remove your gel manicure or get a gel polish change! 

Note from the author! 

Thanks for checking out Gilded Ritual's blog. We are hoping to create meaningful content so our members and potential clients can learn more about nail trends, frequently asked questions that we get regarding spa services, and our brands.  Looking forward to getting you guys involved as we help to elevate your spa routine! 

Please let me know what you think of our first blog post regarding gel manicure fails! 


Gilded Ritual is located at 149 Reade Street in TriBeCa.  We offer manicures, pedicures, waxing, and sugaring services.