9 Best Press-On Nails Sets and Kits (Tested & Reviewed for 2024)

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9 Best Press-On Nails Sets and Kits (Tested & Reviewed for 2024)

I'm just gonna say it: press-on nails are back, and everyone's lovin' 'em. After spending hundreds of dollars on gel nail extensions, I was srsly sick of how long it took to get them done (busy schedule, y'all), and how much my wallet was drained after each appointment. So, I have since vowed that this would be my press-on nail era. I stocked up on everything I needed: at-home manicure sets, strong nail glue, glass nail files for shaping, and vats of acetone for removal. But I quickly learned that no matter how prepped I was, having the best press-on nails was truly what would make or break my whole manicure.

I began hoarding press-on nail kits and diligently testing every single one, taking notes of which press-ons lasted the longest, which had the best designs, and which worked the best for every nail shape and style—all to help you find the best press-on nails. Plus, I got all the key tips on how to apply press-on nails and how to remove press-ons, thanks to nail artist Julie Kandalec. But first, let me show you my top favorite press-on nails:

Keep scrolling for all of the best press-on nails I’ve tried and loved (and I’ve stuck on a few dozen different press-on nail kits in the past six months, FYI). Then I’ll get into all the tips and tricks for a salon-worthy at-home manicure with press-on nails.

Since I tried these press-on nails six months ago, I have barely worn anything else, tbh. The nails themselves feel really sturdy, which is why people constantly ask where I got my nails done when I’m wearing them because they look so natural. And they come in so many different shapes, lengths, and styles—I’ve been loving the special effects line for the “glazed-donut trend” nail look, but I wear the OG Funny Bunny set constantly.

Plus, I gotta shout out the included glue, because a couple of dots on the fake nail and my real nail, and my press-ons easily last a full seven days without lifting at the corners—which is a massive feat as I spend my days furiously typing and prying open packages. Honestly, the glue is so good that removal can be kind of a pain (better than my nails popping off though). I ended up placing an acetone-soaked cotton ball under a plastic nail wrap for about 10 minutes, which loosened the glue right up and made the nails easy to peel off.

Glowing Customer Review: By far the best glue on nails I’ve ever bought. The glue is very strong. The nails stayed on and lasted longer than the other brands that I have used.

The first time I put these on, I immediately noticed how wide the shape of the nail is, which is legit excellent for my wide nail beds. I have to ~finesse~ most press-ons to fit my nails, but not these. I easily found a set that would fit all of my nails, even right up to the edges where most fake nails don’t reach.

Just note these press-ons are very thin, which I personally enjoyed because it allowed me to file them into my ideal almond shape (which I did for these red ones). But the thinness does make them a lil flimsy, which can limit the length of wear. I chose to use the adhesive tabs and a tiny dab of glue right on my natural nail, which helped increase the longevity and give me a full five days of these nails while I was away on a long weekend trip.

Glowing Customer Review: I was really surprised at how real these nails look when they’re on. They were super easy to do and so far have lasted me almost two weeks with no lifting or popping off. I love that they give you enough for two sets of nails. For the price, this is totally worth it. I can have my nails and my coffee shop coffee too!

Theoretically, if I were planning a one-month excursion across Europe, I wouldn’t even get my nails done before; I’d just stick on these press-ons from Static Nails…because they last that long. In all of my testing, these have far and away impressed me the most when it comes to longevity. After a full two weeks, my nails were still glued on, even after multiple showers, dish-washing sessions, hella hand-washing, and even a dip in the pool, all thanks to the included waterproof glue.

But keep in mind, this glue is super sticky, which can make the application a tad messy. To avoid getting glue everywhere, I drip a dot of glue on the center of the fake nail, then at the tip of my nail. Once you press the nail on (and hold for 30 seconds), the glue evenly spreads without spilling out the edges. And if you do get any on your fingers, just dip a Q-tip in acetone, place it on the glue for 20 to 30 seconds, then wipe it up.

Glowing Customer Review: These did not crack or pop off on me at all. In fact, I popped these off on my own because my nail growth was becoming too noticeable. Definitely recommend giving these a try!

Sometimes, I just want to pop on some press-ons instead of painting my nails, and on those days, I always go for the extra-short Olive and June press-on nails. They’re usually around the same length as my natural nails, but they look so much more sleek (and cute? I mean, look at this adorable floral design). I just always cut down and file my nails a little bit to hide them under the press-ons, but otherwise, I find these are some of the simplest, no-fuss fake nails I’ve tried.

FWIW, I also always recommend the Olive and June press-on nail kits to my friends who are looking to dip their toes in the press-on pool, because they’re super beginner-friendly. For starters, these come with a whopping 42 nails in 21 different shapes, which will help you find a nail that perfectly fits (and will make your nails look a whole lot more natural in the long run). Plus, the kit comes with everything you need to get started, including a prep pad to clean your nails; a file, buffer, and cuticle pusher to shape and groom your nails; and a lil vile of nail glue.

Glowing Customer Review: I love these nails. They are so comfortable and feel so natural. They last surprisingly long compared to other press-ons I’ve tried. I’ve got three littles under 4, so these have stood the test of time for sure!

I’ll def be picking up these cult-favorite Kiss press-ons when I’m perusing the drugstore aisles for an affordable set of press-on nails. They’re on the thinner side, which makes them really easy to mold to the shape and size of my nail beds. I was partial to this simple set, but I also had my eye on so many cool, trendy designs, like jelly nails and rhinestone looks.

Tbh, the included nail glue wasn’t as strong as others I’ve tried, so when I want more durability from my nails, I just use a longer-lasting nail glue (the Kiss Powerflex-Brush-on Glue, which I grabbed on Amazon). With the glue included in this press-on kit, my nails lasted about four days. But with the stronger glue, I was able to stick them back on and squeeze out a few extra days of wear.

Glowing Customer Review: I’ve gotten a bit lazy and wanted to try press-ons. I saw these and gave them a chance, and they’re amazing. The nails fit my nail bed perfectly. The cuticle seam is thin and blends very well and the tips of the nails are thicker to look like actual extensions and to add strength. They are lightweight, comfy, and don’t bend at all. I do everything in my nails from housework and scrubbing to cooking and working and typing roughly, and these things have held up beautifully.

If you prefer your press-on nails to look and feel like real nails, then try The Editorial Nail, which was developed by nail artist Gracie J. These press-ons are made of a thicker plastic than any of the others I’ve tried, which mimics how real nails or acrylics would feel. The entire week I wore this set, I couldn’t stop fidgeting with my nails because the texture was so unique. But (!) it’s not just for show either, because it actually makes it way easier to clip and file these press-ons than any of the others I’ve used. I’ve worn these nails twice now—once in the OG almond shape, and a second time in the short squoval shape—because they’re so easy to shape however I want.

Glowing Customer Review: This is my second time ordering these. I loved my first set so much, I finally wore them out. My nail clients love them too and have ordered them.

Nail glue is the GOAT for a super long-lasting manicure, but it can get messy and leave a residue on your nails that you have to majorly file off afterward. If you wanna avoid that altogether, try the viral Kiss ImPress nails, which feature adhesive tabs that make it easy AF to literally just press on and go. I always keep a few packs of these press-ons at home when I’m in a hurry, since I legit just have to match the nails to my shape and press them right on. The adhesive isn’t nearly as sticky as glue, though, so I only get two or three days out of these nails. But worth it for a manicure that legit takes less than three minutes.

Glowing Customer Review: I buy these often for cute, quick wears, and they don’t disappoint. Being short stills allows for ease of use with my hands, and they’re cute. Win, win.

I had no time before a bachelorette weekend to get my nails done, so I hurriedly stashed one of these lil tiny press-on kits from Quickies in my carry on. And lemme tell you, it made doing my nails from an airport lounge ridiculously easy. Truly, I just kept the full set of 24 nails in the bag, then individually found the right nail to match each of mine (less messy than dumping out all of the nails when I’m in a rush), then filed my nail and added a dot of glue on each nail, and boom, that was it.

Then the entire trip, I just kept the little baggie in my luggage in the event that I needed to touch up or reapply another nail (which, surprisingly, I didn’t). And ultimately, everyone on the trip kept asking me where I got my nails done and where they could get a lil bag of Quickies. TBH, I have my bag lying around here somewhere…

Glowing Customer Review: Obsesssssssed with this set! I’ve had soooo many compliments!

If your vibe is extra-long nails, you’ve gotta try these from Marsai Martin’s brand, which just happened to win a 2023 Cosmo Holy Grail Award (nbd). “I rarely wear my nails long, but some moments deserve some elevated digits and that’s when I grab these bbs,” wrote Cosmo beauty editor-at-large Julee Wilson. Of all the press-on nails I’ve tried, these are definitely the longest, and they’re one of the few brands I’ve found that’s offering this “extra-long” option. But don’t worry, if you wear these a few days and want to file ‘em down a bit or reshape them, you easily can, because the tips are flexible.

Glowing Customer Review: I’ve had them on for about a week so far, and they haven’t even attempted to lift or break during my everyday routine. I love the fast-drying glue and the sturdiness of the nail tips. Great product for that quick fresh set feel. I will be buying again!

The key to ensuring your fake nails last for a long time is to make sure they fit correctly. “Using a nail that doesn’t fit the arch, aka the apex, of your nail will make it pop off too soon," says nail artist Julie Kandalec. So, for me, I just really made sure to push back my cuticles with a wooden stick to get the nails as close to the edge as possible, which makes them fit even better and even helps reduce some lifting when the nails start to wear.

And if you wanna make them last *even* longer, follow this tip from Kandalec: “Clean your nails with 91 percent alcohol before applying your press-ons to dehydrate your nail beds, which will help the glue adhere better.” Then, drip on a generous amount of nail glue so that the glue is evenly distributed across your whole nail when you press it on. Trust me/us—it really works.

To apply press-on nails, you’ll need to prep your nails and hands, shape the nail, then stick it on with glue or adhesive tabs. Here’s a full breakdown, courtesy of nail artist Julie Kandalec:

The fastest way to take off press-on nails, whether you’re using glue or adhesive, is by soaking them in water or acetone, says Kandalec. Keep in mind: The removal process can be damaging to your nails, similar to what you’d expect from acrylics, dip powder, and gel.

So to minimize potential damage, “always make sure to remove your press-on nails correctly,” says Kandalec, because “improper removal—like ripping them off—can lead to brittle nails. So when it’s time to remove your nails, follow this press-on removal tutorial to prevent as much damage as possible:

The best press-on nail sets depend on what nail shape and style you’re going for (i.e., coffin nails, stiletto nails, short nails, long nails, etc.). Most brands offer a wide range of styles, but some have more ~niche~ options, like if you want extra-long press-on nails or short fake nails. Or maybe you prefer a squoval shape or lipstick nails.

But if you’re more into the design than anything, look for press-on nails that you can clip and file to shape exactly how you like. Usually, thin press-ons are good for this, but some thicker press-ons were made to be shaped (à la The Editorial Nail). Check the packaging though, as some kits say to avoid filing on the package to reduce chipping.

If you want your press-on nails to really last, then you should def invest in a kit that comes with glue or purchase a specific nail glue separately (I personally love the Nyki Super Strong Nail Glue and the KDS Nail Glue). An ultra-sticky glue really adheres your nail to the press on from all angles, which gives the edges something to grip onto and avoid lifting up.

But if longevity isn’t your goal here, then opt for convenience with a set of adhesive tab press-on nails. Legit, you just pull back the tab and stick the fake nail right on. It simply could not get easier. (But, tbh, these usually don’t last super long, unless you combine methods.)

Siena Gagliano is an associate editor at Cosmopolitan who writes beauty, with over three years of experience writing in the makeup, skin, and hair spaces. She’s an expert at researching and writing nail stories, like the best nail stickers and the coolest spring nail trends from the runways, and feels especially knowledgable in press-on nails because they are now her go-to form of manicure. She regularly tests and analyzes press-on nails on her own nails for efficacy, while working with the industry’s top manicurists to assess new products and brands.

Beth Gillette is the beauty editor at Cosmopolitan with nearly five years of experience researching, writing, and editing nail stories that range from dip powder nails to summer nail colors. She is an authority in all nail categories but became a legit expert in press-on nails after testing dozens for six months on her own brittle, short nails.

Siena Gagliano is the associate editor at Cosmopolitan, where she primarily covers beauty, fashion, travel, and lifestyle. Wanna know how to get the best brows of your life? Gotchu. What about how to find the best fashion deals of the season, the softest sheets on the market, or exactly how to use retinol without irritating your skin? Check, check, and check. Before joining Cosmopolitan, Siena was a writer at Bustle and several other media outlets. As her 2024 goal, she has vowed to find the best (extra) dirty martini NYC has to offer—and yes, that means ~attempting~ to try every cute cocktail spot in the city (hit her up with some recs, pls). Follow Siena on Instagram for a behind-the-scenes look at that magazine life.

Beth Gillette is the beauty editor at Cosmopolitan, where she covers skincare, makeup, hair, nails, and more across digital and print. She can generally be found in bright eyeshadow furiously typing her latest feature or hemming and hawing about a new product you "have to try." Prior to Cosmopolitan, she wrote and edited beauty content as an Editor at The Everygirl for four years. Follow her on Instagram for makeup selfies and a new hair 'do every few months. 

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9 Best Press-On Nails Sets and Kits (Tested & Reviewed for 2024)

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