Many of you can do your own nails in any shade from violet to French to jet black, and it looks like you paid good money for the manicure. Many of you can not. If you are on of the “can nots,” help is on the way. While there is no cure for a shaky left hand (or right) but practice, there are a few tips that can improve your quest for a successful at-home manicure that will let you leave the house in even the most “Hello!” shade of polish.
1. Short is in. The days of glamour-length nails are over. If you’re stuck on nails longer than a few centimeters, clip those talons and don’t look back. Trendy nail color is vibrant and bright, and dark color doesn’t look great on long nails. Be sure your nails are evenly filed – yes, you must file them. Whether you prefer rounded or blunt edges, make them symmetrical. If one breaks, cut the others to the same length or as close to it as you can get. Waiting for one to grow back so they’re all the same length again is not so chic.
2. Buff your nails. Invest in a top quality nail buffer that has a side for smoothing out any ridges or peels, a side for buffing and a side for polishing. Your nails should be smooth and have a shine to them when you’re done. Avoid any buffers that cause the pink of your nail to turn white. The goal is to buff out the ridges, not scratch them. A smooth nail is the sign of a good manicure. Your color will go on 10 times smoother and will stay inside the lines of your cuticles better when your nail surface is smooth.
3. Take care of your cuticles. Bright colors are like a spotlight on scraggly cuticles. The answer to dry, peeling skin around the nails is to moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. Use a cuticle oil in the morning and at night. If your hands are especially dry, rub it in like a lotion and let it seep into the skin. The oil also works well on the nail itself.
4. Stain, stain, go away! There are few things worse than nails that are stained with the last color they wore. If you already have stains, soak your nails in a solution of water and denture cleaner. It’s safe and it really works. Once your nails are clean, always apply a base coat before any color. Be sure to allow your nail time to dry before applying the base coat, and allow the base coat to dry before applying any color.
5. Polish in layers and allow each layer to dry completely before applying the next. If you use a quick-dry top coat to help, be sure to wipe it off between coats. It is an oil based polish that can cause polish-ruining smudges.
6. To make you bright colors really pop, apply a thin first coat of white. Don’t go all the way to the edges of yor nail so the color won’t peek through along the sides.