Having your nails done professionally is by far one of the most relaxing and enjoyable beauty experiences a salon can offer.
However, it may be the case that one day you find yourself suddenly in need of a new manicure but don’t have the cash or access to get one done professionally.
Fear not, because we have the secret to getting a salon-quality manicure in eight simple steps:
Step one: Prep like a pro
Gather the following essentials to master your manicure:
- nail polish remover and cotton wool/buds
- nail file and buffer
- cuticle pusher and remover
- hand/nail moisturiser
- base coat
- nail polish
- clear top coat.
Step two: Clean and clear
Start by removing any traces of polish on your nails. Nail polish removers (especially the acetone-based ones) can be drying to nails and cuticles, so sweep over quickly rather than soaking your nails.
Step three: Shape up
Gently file your nails into a smooth, rounded edge to prevent splintering when dry. Sweep the nail file from left to right, or right to left, rather than backwards and forwards. This will help to create a smooth finish without damaging the nail. Avoid using metal nail files as these can be very harsh on the nail. Buff to finish.
Step four: Soothing soak
For extra pampering, soak your nails in a bowl of warm water for around three minutes. This helps to soften the nail ready for polishing.
Step five: Keep your cuticles in check
Very gently use your cuticle pusher to push excess cuticle away from the nail. Be careful not to push too far back. Then use the cuticle remover to cut away the free edge, without cutting into the skin or causing the skin around your nails to tear.
Step six: Moisturise
Apply a rich hand/nail cream; massaging it into your cuticles and the skin around your nails to nourish and hydrate.
Step seven: Prepare for polish
Make sure there’s no moisturiser left on your nails before applying your polish by gently wiping with a cotton bud. This will leave the perfect surface for you to apply your base coat, which protects the nails from staining and prevents chipping.
Step eight: Layer up
Next apply your chosen polish, leaving to dry before applying another layer. A top coat will add shine and lustre and set the polish in place. If you make any mistakes, dip a cotton bud in nail polish remover and clean up around the nail. Leave your nails to dry fully for at least five minutes to avoid scuffing your manicure.