iGel Academy

21 Nail Tech School Essentials You Must Have

It's back-to-school season, and you know what the best part is? Aside from doing acrylic nails to French nails, it's the nail tech must-haves! You can check our best-selling productsnail art kits and professional collections to see what you're missing out on!

Now that summer is over; the back-to-school high must have got you busy prepping through online nail tech courses or binge-watching nail tech YouTubers. It's time to get a pen and paper for your nail tech school checklist; here's a roundup of your must-haves to help you learn and earn your nail tech license!


1. Nail Training Hand


In nail tech school, you will need a practice hand, a.k.a. Nail Training Hand, since this tool will help you practice your brown nail art ideas to blossom gel nails in and out of the classroom. It's an investment you must make to help you improve as a nail artist. 

Remember, every celebrity nail tech you know right now started from the bottom. You can read our guide about using the Nail Training Hand to get the most out of every nail art application. Don't forget to buy refill tips for your practice hand!


2. E-files and Drill Bits 


E-files and Drill Bits are a must-have for every nail artist since they will help you efficiently nail prep. If you find it confusing how to use an E-file, you can read our blog about E-files. There are different types of Drill Bits, and looking for the right fit for your E-file and application can be tricky; read our guide about Drill Bits here!


3. Sanding Bands

Sanding Bands
are a great addition to your e-file and drill-bits collection! The sanding bands can be used to file the top surface of hardened goods like acrylic or UV gel and are also helpful in reducing nail extensions. They come in several grits, the most popular being 180 and 240. 


4. Cuticle oil / Nourish Oil

Nail care is just as crucial as yellow nail art designs; you need to have a Nourish Oil as part of your nail tech kit since it will help your nails be stronger and withstand the constant application and removal of nail art from applying DIY press-on to removing nail tips.


5. Nail Art Accessories


The more, the merrier when it comes to having Nail Art Accessories! You can make your nail designs shine with a gem or two! How about some rhinestone to make your nails glorious through and through? You can read our roundup about our Nail Art Accessories here!


6. Nail Art Brushes

What are paint brushes to painters and beauty tools to make up artists and nail techs? You cannot design beautiful nail masterpieces without Nail Art Brushes. There are plenty of brushes out there, and we made it easy for you to choose the best ones to help you stand out! Here are our 8 Best IGel Beauty Nail Art Brushes To Splurge On.


7. Nail Sanitation Tools


Nail salon sanitation is essential nowadays, even before the COVID-19 pandemic, since it's also a part of every nail tech routine, mobile or in a nail salon. Here's a list of nail sanitation tools you should always have no matter where you are, whether you're practicing nail designs at home or school! 

You can read our UV Sterilization box, Dust Brush, and Dust Collector guides! You can also find other product tutorials in our LEARN tab on our site to help you learn beyond the classroom!

  • UV Sterilization box
  •  Dust brush
  • Phantom Pro Dust collector
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Towels
  • Gloves
  • Face masks

    8. Pro Gel Tips and Nail Tips


    You’ll finally learn how to design aesthetically pleasing short or long nails using Pro Gel Tips or Nail Tips in nail tech school, but you’re unsure what to invest in! We have a guide to help you know the difference between Pro Gel Tips and Nail Tips.


    9. Nail Forms

    Nail forms should be on your nail tech school essentials since you'll need them when sculpting gel to do acrylic nails. It's easy to use, and you'll love the variety of designs we have in store for you! You can read our beginner's guide on using nail forms.


    10. iGel Match Marble Ink


    Adding the iGel Match Marble Ink collection as part of your nail tech school essentials will help you nail the matchy-matchy look! It has a gorgeous variety of colors you cannot help but fall in love with!


    11. Acrylic and Dip Powders


    Once you learn how to apply dip powder nails or acrylic nails, you must have different powders to make your nail art designs stand out! Remember, you’re not only harnessing your nail skills, but you can also add them to your portfolio! 


    Take advantage of our back-to-school sale this week! You can see lots of dip powders, nail art essentials, and nail art accessories you can add to your ever-growing nail tech school kit! Be advanced in your classes by reading our common mistakes beginners make with the dip method blog!



    12. Primer


    If you want your nails to last long and make your nail adhesion stronger, then you’ll need a Primer to make your nail designs last longer past school time! Make your nails reach their prime state by having a reliable Primer in your nail tech kit!


    13. Nail Glue/Adhesion

    If you’re into rhinestones or nail foils for your nail designs, then you should have nail adhesion products to make them adhere, such as Foil transfer gel and jewelry gel- no-wipe! Nail tip glue is also necessary to ensure your nail tips have adhered properly to your nails!


    14. Dappen dishes


    Dappen dishes are versatile nail must-haves with plenty of types to help you mix nail product liquids, from acrylic nail liquid to powders. You’ll need one once you’re advancing in your nail classes or at home.


    15. Other Nail Implements

    You will need other nail implements to help prep your nails or practice nail care. Having nail implements is vital as part of your nail tech school essentials, and you'll learn how to care for and use them officially at school. You can read our guide about the French nail cutter tool here.

    Buffing your nails should be a part of your nail tech kit in school. It can be your backup to your e-file. Buffers are lightweight and have a variety of sizes to buff your nails, and you can easily squeeze them into your nail kit!

    • Cuticle pusher/ orange wood sticks
    • Buffers
    • Cuticle scissors
    • Nail clipper/cutter
    • Nail files
    • French nail cutter tool


    16. EMA Monomer and Odor Eliminator


    So you have your Dappen dish with you, and you're ready to mix to create an acrylic bead, you'll be needing an EMA-based monomer in your nail tech school essentials! 

    You need to use an EMA-based Monomer because most beauty brands, including us, use (ethyl methacrylate) since it's approved and safe to avoid people who use our monomers any nail allergies. You can also use our Odor Eliminator since it will help remove the strong chemical scent most monomers have! You're nail school classmates, and teachers will thank you for it!


    17. Color Charts and Swatches

    You’ll need color charts and nail swatches if you have plenty of dip powders and nail product colors in your nail school bag! It will help you figure out what colors complement each other and make it easier for you to use them during a hectic day! Read our blog about the importance of color charts and swatches.


    18. Nail Lamps


    Gel and acrylic nail lovers will have to invest in reliable and high-quality nail lamps to cure their nail art design masterpieces! We have a roundup of investment-worthy yet stylish nail lamps you should check out!


    19. Top Coat

    A Top Coat is more than just making your nails glossy; it does more than being a final touch! It helps make your nail designs last longer, protecting the beautiful colors from fading immediately. You should have a Topcoat in your nail tech school essentials!


    20. Lacquer and Gel Polishes


    If you’re a big fan of gel nails and want to be an expert on them by the time you’re done in nail tech school, then you have to invest in different types of lacquer & gel polishes that are high-quality and have vibrant colors! You can read our blog about the 9 common gel polish mistakes you should avoid!


    21. Organizers

    You’ll spend most of the time working on your nail desk, so staying organized is a must! It can be chaotic and messy during, in-betweens, and after every nail session, which is why organizers can be your life savers as a beginner nail tech, especially if you’re not familiar with them yet! Here’s our no-fuss guide on how to effectively organize your nail desk!