Sunday, January 12, 2014

I should probably preface this by saying this fix will work for us Gel Polish users, but I can't recommend it for Regular Nail Polish users.
Gelish Striping Tape No Lifting
I love striping tape. It gives an added crispness and a professional edge to almost any manicure, imo. My only problem with it? IT PEELS. Even under 2 coats of Top It Off striping tape will peel. I found that under Top It Off, after a couple of days a clear film would start to lift and separate from the adhesive side of the tape, and it was downhill from there.

I'd basically ruled striping tape out as a leave-on nail art accessory... until now.

Back in December I was doing a set of nails for my coworker and was moaning and groaning because I wanted to include striping tape but always had such bad results. She looked at me and said, "why don't you put the Structure gel over the tape?"

How had I never thought of that!? I put silver tape down, slapped on a layer of Gelish Structure, and 3 weeks later the tape was secure and pristine on her nails without one hint of a lift! I also ran a second experiment with my fiancée. On day 16 she soaked her nails off and there was absolutely no lifting on the nail tape.

Now, I'm unsure if it'll cause color bleed/fade on colored metallic tapes, but the silver tape was perfectly fine.

Here's how I did it:

  1. 1. Do your typical nail prep, Foundation, and color coats.
  2. 2. Before putting your striping tape down, wipe the cured color polish with Cleanser. You could always cure a coat of Top It Off and THEN Cleanse, but either way you need to remove that tacky layer. I've been applying the tape without first curing a coat of Top It Off. Either way, if you DON'T wipe the tacky layer, the striping tape WILL NOT STICK.
  3. 3. Lay down your tape as you wish. Scrub your nail over the tape to really make sure it's stuck down with no lifting. TIP: Don't lay the tape all the way to the edges. Give yourself just enough room to fully cover the ends of the striping tape with more coats of polish.
  4. 4. Apply a layer of Gelish Structure across the entire nail, making sure to completely cover the ends of the tape, cure.
  5. 5. Continue with your nail art or apply Top It Off, cure, Cleanse, done!

If you have any questions feel free to ask in the comments. I really hope this helps people out!


  1. Hi! I was always afraid to use the striping tape for the peel. Is the great tip, I'll put it into practice. Do you believe that technique of structure gel also works with nails stickers? I mean with the little adhesive images for decorate the nails. Paola

    1. I think this technique would work with nail stickers just as well. I don't have any that I could test it with, but the Structure seems strong enough to hold it. Let me know your results if you try it out!

  2. THANK YOU for putting this up!!! Really, seriously it's the highlight of the month. Hehe. I'm so excited to try it myself.

    1. It's the highlight of my month as well!! I'm so excited about actually being able to USE striping tape. Thanks for stopping by!

  3. I AM SO HAPPY I FOUND YOUR BLOG! I have been trying to use stripping tape on my gelish nails and I was SO frustrated! I thought it was just me! THANK YOU!!!

    1. I'm so glad this helped you out!!! I was super frustrated too, so I was SO happy when this actually worked! :D