THE SWAROVSKI GUIDEN
Swarovski crystals can be a fantastic sparkling jungle, but oh so confusing at times. In this Swarovski giude we go over the background of Swarovski, explain the difference between different types of crystals, the best way for application, removal, etc. but also above all, why you should choose real Swarovski crystals over copies!
THE SWAROVSKI STORY
Swarovski is an old family-owned company founded in 1895 by Daniel Swarovski. The family then lived in Austria in the city of Wattens where they still run their business today and is also where their head office and factory is located. Swarovski is still run by the same family and is now in the 5th generation.
Swarovski is very caring about the environment and has always been very generous with helping, both by running their own hydropower plant which also generates parts of the city, but also by donating money to various organizations and education. Even the packaging Swarovski uses for their crystals consists of recycled material.
WHY SHOULD I BUY SWAROVSKI AND NOT A CHEAP COPY?
Swarovski is a worldwide brand and they always work to deliver the absolute best quality on the market. Unlike other copies, Swarovski’s crystals are crystal clear and thanks to the patented cutting technique, the crystals get an unbeatable shine. It is called “faceting” and Swarovski has different faceting patterns to make their crystals shine more than any other copy. One of the latest cuts is called “Xerious” and is shaped a bit like a star if you look at it from above. Unlike plastic copies, the Swarovski crystals also withstand acetone, which means they can be reused over and over again (on the same person, of course), plus the acetone does not destroy the foil background.
Do you want to support good working conditions and contribute to a better environment? Hopefully the answer is YES and then it is also important to do some research. For example, if you buy a Gucci copy from China that is completely identical to the original, why should you buy a real one? If you buy a bag copy, then there’s unfortunately a risk that you support poor working conditions with cheap labor, child labor, factories that do not think about the environment and choose cheap materials that can be harmful to both animals and the environment.
As you read a little further up in our guide, Swarovski is very concerned about the environment and good working conditions. They do this by using their own water plant that runs both their own factory and the city of Wattens, but also by donating money to various organizations and using recycled materials for packaging, for example. Another thing that is very important to know is that Swarovski has fought hard and long to remove all lead from their crystals. Lead is a substance that is harmful to the body and if you buy crystals from another copy you have no idea about the lead levels that are in the products.
How do you know if a shop has real Swarovski crystals from Austria or a copy from eg. China? The first thing you can look out for on the company’s website is the “Swarovski Authorized Reseller” logo. It should be clearly exposed in several different places on the website / webshop according to Swarovski’s branding guidelines. If someone calls themselves “official dealer / distributor” or similar, it is also in all likelihood false as Swarovski does not allow the word “official”. The third clearest sign is that if Swarovski’s famous logo in the form of a swan is used, then it is also not a company that purchases directly from Swarovski HQ. This logo may ONLY be used by stores selling finished products such as jewelery, watches, figurines, etc. The Swan thus represents a completely different part of the company Swarovski and has nothing to do with “Create You Own Style” which includes the use of loose crystals/components, which we do here.
Are real Swarovski crystals more expensive for you as a consumer to buy? The answer is no! We have made sure that we are at a price level that in most cases is below other large webshops with copies. So you can offer your customers the real “Gucci bag” but don’t have to pay extra for it. We guarantee you that the crystals are safe for the body, that they are made in good conditions and that you get that extra sparkle that no other copy has. Could it get any better than that?
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FLAT BACKS AND CHATONS?
Flat backs are crystals with a flat back which makes them easy to apply to flat surfaces. Chatons, on the other hand, have a cone-shaped back and are beautiful to put together in a “cluster” of crystals, usually about three crystals with the pointed back facing each other.
WHAT ARE FANCY STONES?
All crystals that do not have the classic round shape are called “Fancy Stones”. The popular crystals “Raindrop”, “Kite” and “Flame” are all fancy stones.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CRYSTAL AB AND OTHER CRYSTALS?
Crystal AB consists of a special “coating” called “AB – Aurora Borealis”. This coating is actually designed together with the world renowned designer Christian Dior. Coatings can be applied to both clear crystals like Crystal (clear) AB (coating), but other types of coating can also be applied to colored crystals.
First and foremost, it is important to have the right tools when applying crystals. We recommend our “Crystal Pick-Up Tool” with wax tips that makes it super easy and quick to pick up and apply crystals. A crystal mat prevents the crystals from slipping around and with the right technique you can also make them flip around which also makes them easier to pick up.
You can use both gel and nail polish. If you use nail polish, just apply a layer of top coat, place your crystals on the nail and let it dry. This lasts for about 1-3 days.
If you use gel it is important that you use a low viscosity, ie a gel that is flexible and can flex with the nail and crystals. Apply a base layer over the entire nail and then take e.g. a dotting tool and add a few extra drops of gel where you want to put your crystals. Then apply the crystals to the nail and be sure to cover the “girdle/corset”. It’s the little wall that goes around the crystal. It must be fully covered to ensure a long-lasting result. One tip is to take a nail art brush with a little extra gel and go around the crystals, but be careful not to cover your crystals with gel, then the fine faceting will disappear. Finish the design off with your shine and be careful not to touch the crystals.
You can also use glue to attach the crystals, however, it is something we do not recommend as the resin corrodes the foil backing and prevents them from being reused later.
When making chaton clusters, first add a larger amount of builder gel to the nail, put your chatons in the gel dollop and use our LED flashlight to freeze the gel (we recommend three crystals pointing with the pointy tip facing each other), then you can add more crystals to the edges of the cluster. Be sure to really cover all edges so that no hair or anything else can get stuck and pull the stones off. Take a smaller nail art brush with a little bit of clear gel and go around the edges one extra time.
To attach Crystalpixie you can also use both gel and nail polish. Just make sure to go around the edges and add some extra gel to make sure that it’s going to last. You can use e.g. a small spatula and gently push down the Crystalpixie to create a smoother surface.
If you put the crystals in a soak-off gel, you simply just dissolve everything in acetone and then reuse your crystals for the next manicure.
If the crystals have been applied into hard gel, the best way to remove them is to make a small “cut” with a file right next to crystals. Then take a cuticle nipper and simply cut it off. If it is really hard you can also take a rough file and “tear” it away. Just keep in mind that the more rough you remove them, the more likely you are to damage the crystal so you can’t reuse it.
If you have applied it in nail polish, just use some acteone.
The easiest way to remove Crystalpixie is to soak the gel with acetone (if you used soak-off gel or nail polish). The most effective way to remove the Crystalpixie from hard gel is to take a rough file and “scratch” it off the nail.
Remember to apply larger crystals in the center of the nail and smaller crystals out towards the edges to make sure that the design will last longer. Also, be careful not to put crystals too close to the edges and the cuticles and properly seal with gel. Smaller crystals placed around larger crystals help to “grab on” to the larger ones and also make it more durable.
If you use gel, wiggle the nail back and forth in the lamp to get even cure in between the crystals. You can also use our handy little LED flashlight to flash cure the crystals so they do not run inside the lamp.
There is actually a name for pimping clothes and things up with crystals – “Crystalize” and it is a huge trend in the US! Pimp up your crystal pick-up tool, LED lamp, your e-file, your cleanser pump, your shoes or other decor in your room – both at home and at work!
For this you can use our adhesive “E6000”. If you are going to apply crystals to a hard surface, you must first rough it up with a rough file. Then just start crystallizing! Apply the glue onto a small surface first and take a few crystals at a time. The E6000 is a relatively quick-drying glue so it is important not to work with too large surfaces at once.