These days going to the salon is simply not an option. What shape are your nails? Nails in need of a little TLC and you cannot wait much longer? (Don’t get us started on our roots!). We have put together a routine to try out at home. We know this does not replace your terrific skilled therapist in the salon but you can be proud you tried. You will get the satisfaction and also the therapeutic benefits. Okay so you may not have a steady hand and then there is the chipping, warping, and smudging. So a lot can go wrong. But with a little practice and a good method, you can get a manicure like a pro. Let’s get you started on the good practice and method.
Here’s what you will need:
Clean your nails and remove all the old nail polish with a good nail polish remover. Even if you don't have polish on, you'll still want to run a cotton ball of remover over each nail to get rid of any oils or dirt. Don't forget to wash your hands with soap and water.
Clip nails if they have grown too long. Start with your emery board. Shape your nails, ensuring you shape in one direction. If you have thin nails, hold the file flush to your nail and tilt it so you file from slightly underneath. This allows you to see what you are doing. Starting at one end and move up to the middle. Repeat on the other side of the nail. Be sure you are not too rough to prevent the nail from splitting. Shape until you have no jagged edges. Do not shape too low and into the skin so you do not damage the nail bed. You can go for a square shape or rounded nail shape. Or something that’s a little bit in the middle – square with rounded edges ‘squoval’ can look really good.
Finally, buff the tops and sides of your nails lightly with a nail buffer to create a smooth bright surface. It also helps your nails get a more youthful look and gets rid of ridges
Apply cuticle cream or oil and massage in to help moisturise.
Soak hands in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes at a time. Push back cuticles gently with an orange stick. You can also use the cuticle stick to clean underneath your nail tips. We would leave the trimming of the cuticles to the experts! Your cuticles protect your nails from bacteria and keep them soft so you do not want to damage them.
Give your hands, wrist and forearms a gentle scrub using your favourite body scrub or a specialist hand scrub. This will remove dead skin, replenish moisture and give your skin a gorgeous glow. Wash and dry hands thoroughly.
Moisturise your hands. Use a rich, luxurious hand cream to keep your skin smooth and hydrated. Your hands will thank you for all the moisture. The skin needs this just as much as the skin on your face or body. You can give yourself a mini hand massage – go on, relax for a minute. Your spa may be shut but you can still relax.
Next, use nail polish remover to clean your nails again to ensure any residue is removed from the nail.
Apply a base coat to hydrate, protect the nails, and prevent chipping. Apply a thin layer of base coat to each nail, starting from the base of the nail to the tip. Start with the thumb and work to the little finger. Repeat on the other hand. This will help prevent staining from your nail colour.
Now for the fun bit. Apply two coats of your chosen colour using quick, light strokes to allow polish to evenly distribute on each nail. Striping your nail three times: once down the middle, once on each side. For best results, wait for the first coat to dry, usually about 2 minutes before applying the second.
After your nails have dried, apply a topcoat. A topcoat protects and prolongs the painted nails from chipping and adds shine to nails. Do this carefully. This may be clear but it shrinks and tightens as it dries so can give a ridged look if not done properly.
Tidy up any mistakes or wobbly edges by wrapping a very small piece of cotton ball soaked in nail polish remover around the end of your cuticle stick and carefully trace around your nails