Do You Put Top Coat Over Rhinestones?

Absolutely, it’s recommended to apply a top coat over rhinestones to secure and protect them. This helps prevent them from falling off and adds a glossy finish to the nail art.

When it comes to adding some bling to your nails, rhinestones are a go-to choice for many nail art enthusiasts. But is it necessary to apply a top coat over those sparkling gems?

do you put top coat over rhinestones
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Okay, here we will explore the pros and cons of sealing your rhinestones with a top coat, and provide you with some practical tips to make your rhinestone nail art shine its brightest.

 Do You Put Top Coat Over Rhinestones?

Yes, you can put a top coat over rhinestones when creating nail art. In fact, it’s often recommended to secure the rhinestones and add a protective layer to ensure they stay in place and maintain their sparkle.

When considering whether to apply a top coat over rhinestones in nail art, there are several essential factors to keep in mind. It’s crucial to choose a nail polish that is compatible with rhinestones. Opt for a high-quality, clear, and fast-drying top coat specifically designed for nail art to prevent any adverse reactions with the rhinestones that could dull their shine.

To achieve a flawless finish, follow these techniques: Ensure your base nail polish color is completely dry before adding rhinestones to avoid smudging. When applying the top coat, use a small amount and be mindful of not dragging the brush over the rhinestones to prevent displacement. Pay special attention to sealing the edges of the rhinestones, as this will help them stay in place. If your nail art appears bulky due to multiple layers of rhinestones, consider using a gel top coat to smooth out the surface and provide durability.

However, potential challenges may arise during this process. To combat smudging, work slowly and carefully during top coat application. If smudging occurs, use a clean nail art brush dipped in nail polish remover for cleanup. In case a rhinestone gets displaced, gently push it back into place with a toothpick or dotting tool before the top coat dries. To prevent top coat bubbling, make sure your nail polish layers are thin, and allow each layer to dry completely before applying the next one.

Pros and Cons of Applying Top Coat Over Rhinestones

Like any technique, applying top coat over rhinestones comes with its own set of pros and cons. Let’s delve into the details:

1. Advantages of using top coat over rhinestones

Securing rhinestones: One of the primary benefits of applying a top coat is that it helps to secure rhinestones in place. It acts as a protective barrier that holds the rhinestones firmly on the nail, preventing them from popping off prematurely.

Adding shine and depth: A top coat can significantly enhance the brilliance of rhinestones. It creates a glossy finish that reflects light, making the rhinestones appear even more dazzling and vibrant.

Extending the lifespan of nail art: Rhinestone nail art tends to be short-lived due to the wear and tear nails endure. However, a top coat can provide an extra layer of protection, helping to preserve the beauty and integrity of your nail design for a longer period.

Smooth finish: In addition to securing rhinestones, a top coat can help create a smooth surface over the nail, ensuring that there are no sharp edges or protruding rhinestones that could catch on clothing or accessories.

Versatility: Top coats come in various finishes, including glossy, matte, and satin. This allows you to customize the look of your rhinestone nail art to suit your style or the occasion.

2. Potential disadvantages or considerations

Smoothing the surface: While a smooth surface can be an advantage, it can also be a disadvantage if the top coat is not applied carefully. Applying too much top coat or not distributing it evenly can result in an uneven, bumpy surface.

Dulling rhinestones: Some top coats, particularly matte ones, can dull the sparkle of rhinestones. If you want to maintain the rhinestones’ full brilliance, be selective in your choice of top coat finish.

Overuse and thickness: Layering too many coats of top coat can make your nail art look bulky and unnatural. Additionally, excessive use of top coat may cause it to chip or peel, detracting from the overall appearance of your nails.

How Do You Put Top Coat Over Rhinestones?

Here are detailed steps on how to do it:

Materials You’ll Need:

  • Rhinestones
  • Clear top coat nail polish
  • Nail polish remover (optional)
  • Cotton swabs or a clean-up brush (optional)
  • A steady hand and good lighting

Steps to Apply Top Coat over Rhinestones:

  • Prepare Your Workspace:

Make sure you have a clean and clutter-free workspace with good lighting. This will help you see the rhinestones clearly and apply the top coat precisely.

  • Prepare Your Nails:

Start with clean, dry nails. Remove any old polish and push back your cuticles. Apply a base coat to protect your natural nails and promote better adhesion of the nail polish.

  • Apply Nail Polish:

Apply your chosen nail polish color as a background for the rhinestones. Allow it to dry completely.

  • Apply Your Rhinestones:

Apply your rhinestones with nail glue.

a. Apply a tiny drop of nail glue to the back of a rhinestone.

b. Use tweezers or a rhinestone picker to place the rhinestone on your nail in your desired position.

c. Press gently to ensure it adheres securely.

d. Continue adding rhinestones one by one, arranging them in your desired pattern or design. Leave a small gap between each rhinestone to prevent them from touching each other.

  • Ensure Your Rhinestones are Secure:

Before applying the top coat, make sure your rhinestones are securely adhered to your nails. If any of them are loose, use a tiny amount of nail glue to reattach them. Allow the glue to dry completely before proceeding.

  • Clean-Up (Optional):

If you happen to get nail polish on your skin while attaching rhinestones, you can rectify it by using a cotton swab or a clean-up brush soaked in nail polish remover. This will help you to clean up the edges and achieve a refined and polished appearance.

  • Choose the Right Top Coat:

Use a clear top coat nail polish that is suitable for nail art. You want a top coat that is not too thick, as a thick top coat may obscure the rhinestones.

  • Apply the Top Coat:

Dip the brush into the clear top coat nail polish, ensuring that it’s not overloaded with polish. You want a moderate amount on the brush, not too much to flood the rhinestones.

Starting from the base of your nail, gently sweep the top coat over the rhinestones and the entire nail surface. Be careful not to press too hard or drag the brush, as this can displace the rhinestones. Apply the top coat in smooth, even strokes, working your way up to the tip of your nail.

If you have multiple layers of rhinestones, make sure to coat each layer with the top coat.

  • Seal the Edges:

Pay special attention to the edges of the rhinestones. You want to ensure that the top coat completely seals the edges of the rhinestones to prevent them from snagging on things or getting caught in your hair.

  • Allow to Dry:

Let the top coat dry completely. This may take a few minutes, but it’s essential to prevent smudging or dulling the rhinestones’ sparkle.

  • Apply a Second Coat (Optional):

If you feel that the first coat didn’t provide enough protection or shine, you can apply a second coat of the clear top coat. Allow it to dry completely as well.

  • Clean-Up (Optional):

After the top coat has dried, inspect your nails for any excess top coat on your skin or around the edges of your nails. If necessary, use a cotton swab dipped in nail polish remover to clean up any stray polish.

Once everything is dry and tidy, your rhinestone manicure is complete! You can now admire your sparkling, protected nails.

Watch this Video:

Do You Put Rhinestones on Before Top Coat?

Yes, it is generally recommended to apply rhinestones before the top coat when creating nail art. There are several reasons for this approach.

  • Firstly, placing rhinestones on your nails before applying the top coat ensures that they adhere securely to the nail surface. The top coat acts as a protective layer that seals the rhinestones in place, preventing them from falling off or getting snagged on clothing or other objects, which could potentially damage your nail art.
  • Secondly, adding rhinestones before the top coat allows for a smoother and more even finish. When you apply the top coat over the rhinestones, it helps to level the surface, making it look seamless and glossy. This creates a polished and professional appearance for your nail art.
  • Lastly, the top coat also plays a crucial role in protecting your nail art from everyday wear and tear. It acts as a shield against chipping, fading, and scratching, thus extending the longevity of your nail design.

In summary, placing rhinestones before the top coat not only ensures their durability and longevity but also contributes to a more aesthetically pleasing and well-protected nail art look.

Can You Put Gel Top Coat Over Rhinestones?

Certainly, you can apply a gel top coat over rhinestones in nail art to secure and enhance your design.

Start with prepared nails, including a base coat and the placement of rhinestones using nail adhesive or clear nail polish while it’s still wet. Allow the rhinestones to set for a moment.

Then, apply a clear gel top coat evenly over the entire nail, ensuring it covers the rhinestones and the surrounding area. This gel top coat serves two purposes: it seals and protects the rhinestones, preventing them from falling off or losing their luster, and it provides a glossy finish that enhances the overall look of your nail art.

To complete the process, cure the gel top coat under a UV or LED lamp as per the product’s instructions. This step is crucial for hardening the gel and securing the rhinestones firmly in place.

Can You Use Any Top Coat With Rhinestones?

Not all top coats are suitable for use with rhinestones.

You should use a clear, non-thickening top coat specifically designed for nail art when applying rhinestones. These top coats are formulated to dry quickly and evenly, preserving the appearance of your rhinestones.

Gel and regular top coats can both be suitable options, depending on your preference and the type of nail polish you’ve used. It’s essential to avoid matte top coats, as they can dull the shine of your rhinestones.

Reputable nail top coat brands known for their quality and durability include Seche Vite, OPI Top Coat, Essie Gel Setter, and Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Top Coat. These products are widely used and trusted by nail enthusiasts for various nail art applications, including rhinestones.             

Always read the specific instructions and recommendations provided by the manufacturer for the best results with their product.

Can You Cure Rhinestones With Top Coat?

You cannot cure rhinestones with top coat because they serve different purposes in nail art and crafting. Rhinestones are decorative elements made of glass, plastic, or other materials, and they are typically adhered to surfaces using adhesive, glue, or a specialized nail art gel. These adhesives provide a secure bond between the rhinestone and the surface.

On the other hand, top coat is a clear nail polish or finishing product designed to seal and protect nail art, adding a glossy finish and preventing chipping. It does not have the properties to cure or bond rhinestones. To ensure rhinestones stay in place, it’s important to use an appropriate adhesive and then seal them with a top coat to protect the overall nail or craft design.

How Long Does It Take for the Top Coat to Dry Over Rhinestones?

The drying time for a top coat applied over rhinestones can vary depending on the specific brand and type of top coat, as well as environmental factors like humidity and temperature.

Generally, it takes around 10 to 20 minutes for a standard nail polish top coat to dry over rhinestones. However, to ensure complete and thorough drying, it’s advisable to wait for at least 30 minutes to an hour.

Some fast-drying top coats may dry in as little as 5-10 minutes. To prevent smudging or displacement of rhinestones, it’s essential to be patient and allow ample drying time before handling or exposing the nails to potential damage.

Can You Use Top Coat as Nail Glue for Rhinestones?

Partly no. Top coat nail polish is designed to seal and protect your nail polish, providing a glossy finish. It lacks the adhesive properties necessary to securely attach rhinestones to your nails.

To effectively adhere rhinestones to your nails, it’s best to use a dedicated nail glue specifically designed for this purpose. Nail glue is formulated to provide a strong bond, ensuring that your rhinestones stay in place for a longer period of time. It dries quickly and is resistant to water, which helps maintain the integrity of your nail art.

Using top coat nail polish as an adhesive for rhinestones is not effective and may result in the rhinestones easily falling off your nails, especially when exposed to moisture. To achieve a professional and long-lasting nail art look, always opt for the appropriate nail glue designed for the task.

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Final Words

So, if you’re looking to secure and protect rhinestones on your nails, using a top coat is a sensible choice. It helps prevent rhinestones from falling off prematurely and adds an extra layer of durability to your nail art. However, it’s essential to ensure that the top coat is compatible with rhinestones and doesn’t dull their sparkle.

By selecting the right nail polish, following proper techniques, and addressing potential challenges, you can achieve a stunning and enduring result. Patience and precision are crucial when working with rhinestones to maintain their beauty and sparkle in your nail art.

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