The Russian almond shape is a classic of nail salon styling, which has been recently gaining popularity among customers. It requires some experience in nail styling to make it, but with our tips, you'll see that it's not that difficult at all!
How is the Russian almond shape different from the classic one?
When viewed from the top, they look the same. We can only notice the differences when we look at the nail from the side. The classic almond, as well as the oval, starts and ends at the same height. In turn, looking at the Russian almond from the side, we notice that it starts like a classic almond, but after the apex, it does not return to the cuticle level, but runs straight, to the free edge. The edges of the Russian almond look a bit different - they do not create a tear together with the upper arch as in the almond, but stay parallel, and the top and bottom meet at an angle of 45 degrees.
The list of products used:
39 PLN / 500 ml
29 PLN / 15 ml
29 PLN / 15 ml
69 PLN / 13 ml
35 PLN / 7 ml
39 PLN / 7 ml
19 PLN / 8 ml
- Cleaner Wipe Off
- Acid or Acid-free Primer
- Perfect Base (or Protein Base)
- Easy Shape Light Rose gel
- Gel polish, shade: Red Fred
- Tip Top
- Cleaner Super Shine
- 100/180 grit file
- 180/220 grit buffer
- Indigo Master Nail Art 006 brush
- Cuticle Pusher
- E-file bit: Indigo Cuticle 9
- E-file bit: Indigo Cuticle 7
- Ice Cream Brush brush
- Protein Serum
How to build the perfect Russian Almond?
Before we start, remember about the proper nail prep. We disinfect our hands, put on gloves. We disinfect our and customers' hands and only then proceed to prepping the nail plate.
Filing and cuticle prep
1. We shorten the nails with a 180 grit file.
2. We prep the cuticles with an e-file bit no.9 holding it flat, taking care not to press the tool too much against the nail plate and to run smooth movements. We remove any dead tissue attached to the cuticles and gently push the cuticles back with smooth pushy-sweeping motion. If the cuticles are soft and death tissue do not adhere too much to the skin - we set the e-file speed to 15,000 revolutions. If the cuticles were harder, the speed could be slightly higher.
3. We change the e-file bit to no.7, which we'll use to smooth the nail folds and get rid of any burrs. The speed is set to 10,000.
PRO TIP: We shall not cut out the soft cuticles before extending the nail, as the filing of applied product at the freshly removed cuticles may result in cutting the customer.
4. We use a cuticle pusher to lift the cuticles.
5. Using a 180 grit file, we gently matt the surface.
PRO TIP: To prep a natural nail plate, do not use files with too sharp gradation, which may result in the nail plate been filed trough and cuticles cut.
6. Wipe the nail using Cleaner. Next apply the primer, e.g. Acid-Free Primer.
7. Rub the minimum amount of Perfect Base and cure it for 60 seconds.
8. If there's too much dispersion after curing -remove it with a dry dust-free cotton swab. This will prevent, during the next stage, the gel to slide on the nail surface.
Giving a shape
1. Determine the exact length of the extended nails and cut the form to the required length. Russian Almond is a shape that will work well with longer salon nails - it should not be shorter than the length 3.
2. 2. We adjust the form to the shape of the natural nail. Put it slightly higher than under the classic almond, bearing in mind that the angle and the cut of the form depend on the shape of the natural nail. To obtain the shape of a Russian Almond, the form must be placed straight or slightly upwards if the nail grows straight. If it grows upwards or downwards - the form must be fitted differently. We remember that we want to obtain a nail whose side edges extend straight from the nail folds, and the curvature of the nail, from the apex to the free edge, runs parallel to its edge.
Tips on how to deal with different nail shapes can be found in one of the episodes on our YouTube channel, in the episode explaining how to build the perfect oval. For the oval, the form is fitted almost the same as for almond. The only difference is that for the almond, we close the form completely, and with the oval, we do it a little more gently.
Do you want to learn how to deal with nails growing upwards, downwards or having an uneven surface? The best solution would be the courses.
3. Make the cuts, if needed, and glue the form together, leaving a small tear at the end, which will make the tunnel very bent.
4. We check if the form is well fitted and evenly placed.
5. We build a frame on the form. We use Easy Shape Light Rose gel and Indigo Master Nail Art 006 brush.
6. Apply the gel evenly, making sure that the edges come out straight from the nail folds and the free edge of the extended nail should be cut at an angle of at least 45 degrees. We work with a painting movement - as if we were painting the wall.
PRO TIP: It's worth applying a little more product to the frame of the side edges to be able to file perfectly straight lines. Remember that when clamping, the entire structure will slightly go up.
7. Cure in the lamp for 30 seconds.
8. We take the form off.
9. Approximately in the middle of the natural nail, apply the right amount of gel. We spread the product between the cuticles and the apex, shading it next to the cuticles - the closer to the cuticles, the less product.
10. Drag the gel towards the free edge. It must be applied evenly according to the shape of the planned tunnel. If there's more product on one wall than on the other - this asymmetry will be clearly visible when clamped.
11. Gently dip the tip of the brush and make long and precise movements just below the surface of the gel. When using Easy Shape gels, avoid sudden and chaotic movements that cause unevenness on their surface. Gentle working with a small amount of product will obtain a perfect surface and reduces filing to a minimum.
12. Put the sculpted nail into the lamp for about 10 seconds.
13. We take the hand out of the lamp, and check if the product has been properly cured. You can do this by tapping the nail with a clamping tool.
14. Gently clamp the nails on the stress line and along the tunnel. We do it the same way as with the almond.
15. Put the nail into the lamp again for 30 seconds.
16. We file the nail shape from the top. Although the Classic and Russian Almond look very similar from above, they are being done completely different. In classic almond, we first file the shape from top, then the area around the cuticles, and finally the C curve and matching sidewalls. In the Russian Almond, when filing the shape from top, we at the same time file sidewalls. The pressure on the surface should be strong enough to create flat triangles on both sides of the nail.
17. Cut the free edge at an angle of 45 degrees.
18. We do the line on the cuticles and apex, which should be between 1/3 and 1/2 of the length of the natural nail. We hold the file straight, and without tearing it off, we file the top part of the nail from the apex to the free edge. We remember that it will be parallel to the side edges, which we will shape at the end. It's important not to place the file too vertically - place it at an angle of about 30 degrees. This will help to obtain a thin hairline and not damage the natural nail plate.
19. Gently join the sharp sidewalls with the nail ridge. We're careful not to flatten the already shaped nail.
20. We file from bottom to top. When filing the side edges, hold the file underneath and work so as not to damage the shape of the nail.
21. Using 180/220 buffer, smooth the nail surface.
22. Use the Ice Cream Brush to dust off the nail plate.
23. Dehydrate the nail with the purple Cleaner.
Painting and finishing touch
1. We apply the first layer of gel polish, e.g. Red Fred.
2. Cure the colour in the lamp for 30 seconds.
3. Before applying the second layer of colour, remove the cuticles using a cuticle pusher.
4. Use a thin Indigo Master Nail Art 006 brush to push the colour under the cuticles.
5. We apply the second layer of colour.
6. Cure it in the lamp for 30 seconds.
7. We apply the finishing layer of top coat, e.g. Tip Top.
PRO TIP: Do you know the concept of a line of light? The line of light is a pane that is created on the perfect surface of the nail. We can achieve it by turning the customer's hand upside down. This will make the top coat levelled, and we'll get a perfect finish of the styling. Forming the line of light, we use a previously cleaned brush, Indigo Master Nail Art 006.
8. Cure the nail in the lamp for 30-60 seconds.
9. After curing, wait a minute for the top coat to cool down.
10. Rub the nail with Cleaner Super Shine.
11. To add the finishing touch to the treatment, apply the Protein Serum - rub it into the cuticles ...
…and it’s ready!