Achieving a great home manicure requires a lot of practice and skill so whether you are feeling too lazy to go to the salon or you want to save up a few bucks, it is never too late to practice doing your own manicure. Apart from being proud to show off your hard work and gain satisfaction in manicuring your own nails, it can be therapeutic and you get to save up some cash as well. Plus, it is comfortable because the whole idea of not leaving the house can be very exciting.
There are a lot that can go wrong with a home manicure like chipping, smudging or bubbles which could make the smallest thing as taking a call or replying to a text look like hard work but it could even be more difficult if you are trying out something fancy but it is really not that difficult to get a celebrity worthy nails by yourself with just a little practice, patience, the right nail tools and tips and you will be a step away from becoming a pro.
Clean your nails with a polish remover or alcohol
Pros say dry manicuring is more hygienic and helps your polish color last longer. Treating your nails to a soak can cause the nails to expand and upon drying, nails contract which in turn causes the nail polish to chip afterwards. It is however advisable to cleanse and prep nails with a nail polish remover or alcohol before polishing. So to get your manicure right, you would want to do it like the pros by spending same amount of time as you would on polishing in prepping and caring for your nails. Cleaning your nails is important to take off old polish, strengthen and moisturize your cuticles. A good rule of thumb is even if your nails are bare, you still should run a cotton ball soaked in polish remover over them to remove dirt and oil build up that could distort your polish.
Cut, file and buff edges
Cut nails first if necessary to desired size, gently file in one direction to get your desired shape; you could choose square tips, round or in between. You can file from underneath to protect against over-filing. Always remember to buff your edges lightly with a nail buffer to create a smooth surface and get rid of nail debris from under and on the sides of your nail. If you skip this step, residue from the filing can build up, causing a ruin on your polished nails. What brushing is to your teeth, buffing is to the nails to help brighten up your nails, make it look youthful and rids off ridges.
Prep your cuticles
Prep your cuticles with a cuticle remover and have it trimmed with a cuticle stick. A cuticle remover exfoliates your nail bed and it is great for cleaning underneath your nails. Your cuticle protects your nails so avoid cutting or trimming them off.
Exfoliate and moisturize
Exfoliate your hands with a hand scrub to eliminate dead skin cells and restore moisture to your skin. Moisturize your hands and cuticles with a hand cream or oil. Cease the chance to massage your hands and keep your cuticle hydrated. Swipe each nail with a cotton ball soaked in nail polish remover to get rid of residue.
Layer on a base coat
Base coat helps protect nails from chipping and nail discoloration. Wait for two minutes for the base to dry off before layering other colors to help lock in your polish color and prevent nail discoloration. Be sure not to shake your nail polish bottle as you coat as shaking creates bubbles which could result to a messed up manicure but if you shake, you should at least wait for an hour for the bubbles to settle before coating.
Apply multiple thin coats
Paint your nails thoroughly making sure to swipe the brush to the cuticles and corners of your nail. A proper first coverage ensures subsequent coats are seamless. Less is usually more so apply multiple thin coats by applying to the middle then finish off with the sides. Thin even coats produces a seamless look and allows the polish to dry in between but a thick coat means that the polish will not have a chance to dry up completely as only the top will dry leaving your nails with a polish prone to smudges. After a full two minutes as earlier stated, you can apply your second coat of polish for a full, seamless coverage but always remember to keep it thin.
Finish off with a top coat
A topcoat adds shine to your nails and protects your nails from chipping. It also helps the lifespan of your polish. Applying on your topcoat has to be with care as a messy swipe can ruin your hard work. Since it is usually a clear color you may think it wouldn’t matter but once dried out, you would notice the imperfections. The reason is because topcoats shrinks and tighten as they dry which can cause unevenness if not applied on properly.
Wipe off strays and rough edges
Tidy up strays and rough edges by carefully tracing around your nails with a cotton ball soaked in nail polish wrapped around a cuticle stick or you can use a nail polish pad soaked in nail polish remover folded in a triangular shape to wipe off. For smudges, you can try using your finger to carefully set the polish but if it is beyond fixing, it’s better to wipe off and redo.
Air drying is best for setting your polish. Exposure to hot air can make nail polish run and not set. Wait for at most 5 minutes to allow your nails dry up completely and it will be worth every bit of the wait.
A few good habits can prolong the lifespan of your hard work. You can put on gloves during washing or cleaning and apply on cuticle oil often to keep your nails healthy and promote growth.
Thank you for your time and if you have some personal tips, you can share in the comment section.