Why Michelle Khan is Your DIY Nail Girl


Summer 2024

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While recovering from food poisoning, Michelle Khan stumbled into her living room, unaware of the star-shaped balloons swaying before her eyes. It took her a few seconds to settle on her cozy couch before she noticed the balloons. As her boyfriend records her startled reaction, the sound of a loud pop, streams of confetti and balloons, and shouts of “Surprise!” and “Happy one million!” come from her second-floor landing.

A TikTok influencer hailed as “your DIY nail girl,” Michelle Khan designed her way to the top — taking 1.1 million followers along her creative journey.

Life Before Nails

Before creating her own gel extension nails in May 2021, the Dallas-based nail guru was an ICU nurse, working in an environment where COVID-19 ran rampant. Eventually, she was able to work from home, taking on the role of a content creator full-time.

What inspired Khan to start doing her own nails was a grim experience that left a sour taste in her mouth. She had paid $90 USD plus tip to get her nails done at a salon, only to come out with a lousy nail job that left her extremely disappointed.

Since then, Khan began practicing on her own nails. Khan’s nail art ranges from super stylish and creative takes on French nail design to holiday and other themed nail styles to die for.

Recreating Celeb Nail Looks

While Khan specializes in creating her own unique designs or turning to Pinterest for inspiration, she is most widely known for her recreation of celebrity nail looks.

Her TikTok videos on nail art inspired by the Kardashians, Euphoria’s cast, and singers like Lizzo and Rihanna have received millions of likes and views.

As you can see, the resemblance between the original nail artists and Khan’s work is uncanny.

Nail Tips and Advice

Michelle Khan is ahead of her time when it comes to investing in healthy ways to do nails. She is known for using Aprés Gel-X™, a gel extension line that consists of a soft gel and a soak-off system that allows for gentle removal of nails. It offers more benefits than acrylic nails, covering the whole nail bed to prevent nails from easily breaking or stunting their growth. Khan also emphasizes sticking to healthy diets and using cuticle oils before and after doing nails to keep them healthy.

Inspiring creativity and confidence

Nail care is not the only thing you should thank Michelle Khan for. Her DIY nail tutorials are also saving you from going broke!

Gel and acrylic manicures often cost between $45 to $100 dollars, depending on the salon you choose and any extra designs you might want to add to your nail design. Imagine the amount of money you could save if you got a nail design kit of your own.

Khan also inspires those who tune into her videos, helping them explore their artistic side and find confidence in the beauty of creativity. Many of her followers have claimed they learned everything about nail design from Khan.

Want to know where to start?

If you want to get into the DIY nail scene, Michelle Khan has great advice for beginners on where to start. The very first things you should know is how crucial nail tools are. Aside from the Gel X Nail Extension kit she praises, be sure to purchase the following to get nails like hers:

  • Brushes
  • Gel polishes
  • Buffer blocks
  • Cuticle oils
  • Nail extension kits
  • An LED lamp for curing nails and UV gloves
  • Nail drill bits
  • Nail clippers
  • Cuticle nippers
  • Cuticle pusher and spoon nail cleaner

Khan has an Amazon storefront of the products she uses. For brushes, she advises using flat brushes to wipe away any gel left behind on your hands. It can irritate the skin or trigger allergies if left unchecked. The brush should be dipped in acetone or alcohol to help clean excess gel from the nails and cuticles. MelodySusie anti-UV gloves are what Khan uses to keep UV rays from damaging her skin when drying and curing her nails with the SUNUV® gel UV light. She also uses other types of brushes, such as the Beetles nail art liner brushes, for more detailed work.

Contributing Writer | Tashon Daley

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