What Can I Use Instead of Nail Primer

Are you planning on doing your nails any time soon? Or, do you already use nail products and sometimes want an alternative solution? Well, this guide answers an important question you might have asked in the nail prep step.

That is, “what can i use instead of nail primer?”

There are various alternatives to nail primer you can use. Some common ones include a base coat, or nail strengthener. 

Alternatives to Nail Primer 

Can I do my nails without primer?
Source: Pixabay

There are various alternatives you use instead of nail primer, including:

Alternative #1. Base Coat

The base coat refers to the product you apply first before applying the nail polish. While base coats and primer seem similar, one is more dynamic than the other – the primer. However, each product serves almost the same function as the other.

Base coats are only suitable for specific products like gel and traditional nail polish products. It serves a few key roles. 

These including protecting the nails from stains and improving the appeal of your nail polish. Usually, the best time to apply the base coat is before you apply your preferred nail product. 

Nail base coats can act as primers because they create a barrier between the nail and polish. Some benefits include that it helps stop staining issues and also prevents chipping. Base coats are also important for improving the finish and quality of nails. 

Recommended Product: modelones 15ml Gel Top and Base

Alternative #2. Nail Strengtheners as a Primer

So, did you nail strengthenrs can also act as nail primers? Why is that, you may ask?

Well, its because you can use them to create base coat – the role of the primers in the first place.

Plus, most high quality nail strengtheners contain products that help clean the nail, and provide a suitable surface for apply polish. 

Some brands even go a step further in making valuable strengthener products. These products include nutrients like keratin, vitamins and minerals that are perfect for nail rejuvenation.

Recommended Product: Hard As Hoof Nail Strengthening Cream

What are Some Reasons for Using a Nail Primer?

How long do nails last without primer
Source: Dreamstime

There are various reasons why using a nail primer is important including:

  1. It acts as an adhesive. Nail primer contains chemicals that act as adhesives to the nail. This provides the perfect surface for applying different nail polish types. Primer is also beneficial because it improves the longevity of the manicure.
  2. Prevents staining issues. Primer is beneficial because it stops staining issues, especially when using dark polishes.
  3. Nail strengthening. High-quality primer products also help strengthen the nails. It stops issues like breaking and brittleness. 
  4. Protects the nails. Primer helps protect the nails from harsh chemicals in nail polish. 
  5. Covers up imperfections. You can also use nail primer to conceal issues like ridges that exist on the nail bed.

How to Make Homemade Nail Primer

What happens if you don't prime nails
Source: Dreamstime

Here is a step-by-step guide for making homemade nail primer, and some relevant products for this process:

Items Required

AcetoneUse this to clean and maintain the structure of your nails.Super Nail Pure Acetone Polish Remover
Rubbing alchoholUse this to clean and maintain your nail structure.Amazon Brand – Solimo 99% Isopropyl Alcohol
Cotton balsUse this to dab the acetone, and polish it on your nail structure.Amazon Basics Cotton Balls
Nail kitIt contains resources like cuticle pushers and nail cutters.Modelones Gel Nail Polish Manicure Set Starter Kit 


  1. Here are the steps involved in making home made nail primber
  2. Mix equal portions of white vinegar and alcohol.
  3. Dop a cotton ball into the steup, and use it to rub over your nails.
  4. Let the mixture dry for a few minutes, and then apply the polish.
  5. Once the primer dries, set a thin layer or nail polish. 

PRO TIP! This video should help: How I Prep My Natural Nails Using No Primer Or Dehydrator

How to Use Nail Primers Correctly?

Is nail primer the same as nail glue
Source: Unsplash

So, did you land on this blog because if struggles with nail primers in the past? We have identified some top products to help you through this process:

1. Remove any existing nail polish from your nails. If you are using a new base coat, you can skip this step. 2. Clean and dry your nails thoroughly to remove any dirt or oils. 3. Apply one coat of nail primer to each nail. Make sure to cover the entire surface area of the nail. 4. Allow the primer to dry completely before applying any other nail products. 5. Apply the base coat of your choice. 6. Allow the base coat to dry before applying any other nail products. 7. Apply the color coat of your choice. 8. Allow the color coat to dry before applying any other nail products. 9. Apply a top coat to seal in the color and add shine. 10. Allow the top coat to dry completely before putting on gloves or engaging in any activity that may damage your nails.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Can I Do My Nails Without Primer?

Yes, its possible to do your nails without primer. However, the result won’t be as appealing as when compared to when you would have used primer. It;s a product that helps improve the strength and structure of the nails.

What Happens if You Don’t Have Primer for Acrylic Nails?

You can apply acrylic nails if you have a primer. That is because primer helps the acrylics stick and also improves their quality. It’s also an important resource for the quality and health of your nails.

How Long Do Nails Last Without Primer?

Expect nails to last up to 3 weeks without primer. Usually, people try to stretch the longevity of nails to up to 6 weeks. However, this isn’t healthy and can negatively affect your nails health.

Is Nail Primer the Same as a Base Coat?

No, nail primer is not the same as a base coat. A base coat is mostly for regular nail polish and gel nails. However, primer works for almost every type of nail polish. Plus, primer also helps improve the nails’ structure by eliminating issues like ridges.

What Happens if You Don’t Prime Nails?

Various things can happen when you don’t prime your nails. The nail polish might fail to stick, be unappealing, or fail to provide longevity. Priming nails is important, and it involves a few important techniques. 

Is Nail Primer the Same as Nail Glue?

No, nail primer is not the same as nail glue. Nail glue helps to stick products like gel nails to the nail bed. However, nail primers are important for preparing the nail surface for polish application procedures.

Is Rubbing Alcohol a Nail Dehydrator?

Yes, rubbing alcohol can perform the same task as a nail dehydrator. That is because it helps remove oils, debris, and moisture from the nail’s surface. Alcohol also helps prevent the development of contaminants like bacteria.

Can I Use Acetone to Prep for Gel Nails?

Yes, you can use acetone to prep for gel nails. That is because acetone helps clean the nails and prevents infection. However, be careful when using it because excessive amounts can be unhealthy for the nails. 

How Do You Prime Your Nails?

There are various ways of priming your nails. You can use an acid-free primer, use a base coat, or a nail strengthener. The type of product you use depends on your preferences and the results you expect. 

Katharyn Riedel

Leave a Comment