Thursday, January 21, 2016

When to prime a stamper and how to prime it correctly!

There are a lot of stamping alternatives in the market. Different stampers, different sizes, different shapes. Not all the stampers are the same, therefore you should not attempt to prime them all in the same way. I've learned this even before I even bought one stamper. Rubber, silicone and marshmallow stampers are made from different materials and you should never use or treat them in the same way. Not all stampers need to be primed.

Basic red rubber stamper (ebay)

First we have the basic small red rubber stampers. These stampers  were a nightmare when we tried to stamp with them. The red stamper head has an empty gap and needs priming in order to transfer. When I started watching videos in you tube I noticed people used files to prime them, not bad if you know what you're doing. But as a nail tech I know how files work, they can leave small indentations on the rubber that you won't even notice but definitely will ruin your work surface, happens with acrylics, happens with gels and happens with natural nails. It will happen with rubber! So I decided to prime it with a 240 or above sponge buffer. This is the tool we nail techs use to do the final buff to our sculpted artificial nails. You end up with a smooth and even surface. Don't go hard on it because you will end up ruining the surface and getting an uneven stamper head that will ruin your designs and manicures.

Deluxe Double Stamper (Messy Mansion)

Then we have the solid  silicone stampers. These stamper heads are found in a range of firmness from squishy to firm, sticky or non sticky and there is a difference in how you should prime them. Never use a file or buffer on this stampers. As the material they're made of is different it is possible you end up ruining their shape. When I ordered the Messy Mansion Deluxe Double head stamper it included a card scraper, an extra stamper head (firmer and purple) and a magic eraser, the ideal tool to prime this type of stamper. But be careful, do not use too much pressure, as  you might damage the stamper head ruining its shape. A ruined shape may lead you to uneven misshaped stamped images on your manicures. Just use a gentle circular motion in order to get a matte surface, this should give you the best results.

XL Stamper- Not Marshmallow (Ebay)

Another alternative (and a cheaper one) is the XL stamper. You can buy this at Ebay or Aliexpress. This one has two ends also. A really small one made of red rubber and intended for accent designs and a larger one for general stamping. As the basic red rubber stamper head, these stamper heads have an empty gap. You can prime them with a 240 grit sponge buffer as you would prime the basic red rubber stamper head.

Marshmallow sticky stamper (MoYou London)

Looking into the stamping market you can find the "Creative Shop Style" marshmallow sticky stampers. These stampers consist of a stainless steel holder and a bigger stamper head. This stamper head is extra squishy and really sticky. This stamper should never be primed. Do not intend to use acetone, polish remover o any type of file or buffer with them. This stampers have a thin coating that gives them the stickiness and protect their shape. If you intend to file or buff them you'll end up ruining them. If it has color that color will transfer to your polish and ruin your stamped design. If you see it doesn't pick up correctly just give it a wash with mild soap (such as Dawn) or rub it with isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol. The only thing that will improve your stamper's ability to stamp is using it and practicing how to manage it.

The XL non sticky Stamper (Uberchic Beauty)

As the sticky marshmallow stamper arrived so did the non sticky version of it. Available in many brands and different firmness than the sticky one. I opted for the firmer, larger version from Uberchic beauty. This stamper does not require any type of priming either but a good wash with a mild soap (like Dawn), and that is only to remove any greasy residues the mold might have left behind. Do not attempt to file or buff them as this will only damage the stamping surface. Do not use acetone or polish remover on them because you will only get to damage the stamper head. I did this with mine and it stamped just right.

Clear Jelly Stamper (Born Pretty Store)

Another option in the market is having it's best time with most stamping supplies online sellers right now. I am referring to the Clear Jelly stamper. It's original version was very delicate and expensive but the new version is more than affordable with most sellers. This stamper does not require any priming. Absolutely do not attempt to file o buff it. And do not rub it with anything because it will loose its transparency. Just use a lint roller with it. It should stamp beautifully.

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