Why Does My Nail Polish Bubble: Reasons and Fixing Guide

It’s a dream to have pretty nails beautified with some amazing nail polishes. But it’s not always easy because while drying your nail polish, bubbles can form. These pesky bubbles will ruin the nail polish and unfortunately, it’s quite troublesome to remove them. Also removing the polish completely and start painting your nails again are not so easy. This is time-consuming and you will never expect it while you’re in hurry?

Why Does My Nail Polish Bubble

Knowing ‘why does my nail polish bubble’ will help you to take necessary precautions and prevent nail polish bubbling. This guide is all about nail polish bubbling! So, keep reading and enjoy the beauty of nail polish free of bubbles.

Why Does My Nail Polish Bubble?

Bubbles are seen in nail polish when drying on your nails. It’s an irksome situation that nobody wants to experience. But what are the causes to form bubbles in your nail art? Let’s take a look.

1. Unclean Nails:

Don’t hurry. As you’re making your nails elegant-looking, take some preparation. Clean up your nails, cuticles, and sidewalls. Greasy nails will not allow polishes to sit on the nailbed tightly.

2. Hot Temperature:

Never do your nail art in a place that is hot and not enough arid. Also if your body temperature is high, don’t paint your nails. High temperatures can form bubbles in your wet nail polish.

3. Excess Shaking of Nail Polish:

If you shake top coat or nail polish, there will be many invisible bubbles in the bottle. When you apply on nails, they will be larger and visible on the nail surface.

4. Doing Nail Art in Air Conditioning:

If a place has strong wind or air conditioning, avoid that because this type of environment is suitable to create nail polish bubbles. This environmental condition can excessively dry your nails.

5. Exposing Polish to Air:

If you keep the nail polish bottle open, air will enter into the bottle and they will be mixed with nail polishes. As nail polish with air creates a thicker substance, it will also form bubbles while applying on nails.

6. Short and More Strokes on Nails:

Many apply polishes with many short strokes. It helps to form bubbles as short strokes allow air to enter into the nail polish. Moreover, short strokes can cause an uneven finish.

7. Rapidly Dripping the Brush into Bottle:

Dripping your brush into the polish means kneading the polish. It gives chance to add millions of bubbles in the polish. And finally, they will take place on your nails.

Next Read: Why Do My Gel Nails Peel-Off after One Day?

How to Fix Nail Polish Bubbles?

As you know the reasons why nail polish bubbles form, it’s time to beat them. Here are the tips to fix nail polish bubbles.

Be Prepared:

Clean your hands with soapy water. Dry out to get a clean surface. Soak a cotton ball in acetone and wipe your nail bed with it. It helps to remove any dirt and oil.

Put a Thin Layer of Base Coat:

A base coat offers so many advantages. It prevents discoloration of nail polish and provides an oil-free surface. As a result, nail polish clings to the nail bed without allowing any space for air.

Avoid Old Sticky Polish:

Check your nail polish. Only apply if it has the right consistency. Thicker and sticky polish constructs tiny bubbles. So, check it first and use lacquer thinner to get the suitable consistency.

Don’t Shake the Bottle:

People are prone to do two things; one is shaking and another is rolling the nail polish bottle. Avoid the first one – shaking the bottle, as it creates many bubbles that will transfer to your nails. Simply roll that bottle to achieve the desired result.

Use a Topcoat:

After painting your nails, use a topcoat on them. Cover the polished area properly with the topcoat. With preventing bubbles, this process also ensures the durability of your nail polish.

Dry with Cold Water:

Don’t give any chance to the air to enter into your new nail art. To do it, you have to dry out your nails quickly. Dip your nails into very cold water for about 60 seconds. Don’t take a hot shower soon after doing your nail art.

All these tips can give you a significant result. Find what particular problem preventing the finest nail art and then, apply a solution for attaining bubble-free nail polish.

How to Fix Bubbles in Gel Nail Polish?

Gel nail polish bubbles up like regular polish. As gel polish is thicker than normal polish, you will need to be careful from the beginning of the application. Drying and maintenance should also be monitored efficiently. Here are some tips to fix bubbles in gel nail polish.

Remove Dust and Old Polish:

Cleaning the nail surface is the key to avoid bubbles in gel polish. Dust on nails will hamper sitting the polish appropriately. If there are old polishes, remove them. Use an alcohol-based cleaner to clean the nail bed.

Complete Preparation:

Trim nails as you desire. The longer length is not suitable for gel polish or you have to face trouble applying gel polish on that. Remove excessive cuticles and lightly buff the nail surface, don’t make the surface thinner. Primer is okay if that is recommended by the manufacturer. Dry out the nails under a small fan.

All these will make your nails suitable for gel polish. Consequently, the gel polish will sit on the nail bed properly without creating any bubbles.

Avoid Old Gel Polish or Use Thinner:

Generally, old gel polish is much thicker. It is because when you use polish several times, air comes in contact with gel polish and thickens that chemical substance. Like this, gel topcoat and gel base also become thicker. These prevent to application thin layer on the nails.

Therefore, use polish thinner to make the gel polish, topcoat, and base thin. Finally, apply with a low amount but long strokes to prevent bubbles.

Apply Thin Layer:

The thicker gel will not dry in a short time. During a longer drying time, bubbles can form easily. To prevent this, check if the base, gel polish, and topcoat are in fine condition. If you see they are good to apply, use a brush and apply only a thin coat.

It is also a matter of practice to use a brush so that you can avoid short strokes and get a proper finish. Dip the brush into the polish and press it in such a way that can leave excess polish.  

Use Suitable UV Lamp:

There is a way to check if your light is okay or not for curing nail art. Paint your different nails with dark gel, white, and black color. Cure them under the lamp for the recommended time. If any of them is not cured ideally, you should consider replacing the UV lamp.

After managing a new UV light, you can follow the same trick to check if that is efficient or not. If curing is perfectly done, your gel nail polish will not create bubbles.

Place Your Nails under Proper Light Intensity:

This is another reason that can cause bubbles formation in your gel polish. If you place your nails under the wrong location, curing will not be done rightly. Make sure your nails are under the right light intensity so that they can absorb light properly. This will help drying the polish quickly and gel polish will last longer without having bubbles.

How to Prevent Nail Polish Bubbles?

Nail polish is for enhancing beauty and giving you an amazing feeling. But everything fails if you see nail polish bubbles. To sum up the reasons for nail polish bubbles and fixing techniques, the following tips can be very beneficial to prevent nail art bubbles.

  • Check your body temperature and also the environment. Don’t apply nail polish if there is hot temperature around you.
  • Avoid thick nail polish. If you have no other option, use nail polish thinner to get desired consistency.
  • Pick a nail polish from known brand. It will increase your confidence level and definitely, they manufacture nail polishes that will serve you well.
  • Oily nails cause nail polish bubbles. Clean the nails properly and then apply primer to ensure appropriate surface.
  • Gently roll the bottle to avoid producing lots of imperceptible bubbles.
  • Thin layers and long strokes, keep in mind! When you paint with short strokes, you need to put brush on nail beds for many times. It gives the air an option to penetrate into the polish and at last, it produces bubbles.
  • Be careful from the beginning to the end of painting your nails. Distraction can mess the whole thing.


Nail polish bubbles are irritating but you can stop them by taking some steps. When you know the reasons why nail polish bubbles form, you can prevent them and get your desired nail art.

Hope the guide helps you. Follow all the tips while painting your nails. Be sure to take precautions when needed otherwise, you can simply mess everything.

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