Painting my nails is part of my weekly routine. Making time to tend to my fingernails is a gift I give myself, and I reap the rewards all week long. Pretty polished nails make me smile, make every outfit look more put together, and help keep my thin flaky nails strong and healthy.
I cannot stress enough how much I work with and use my hands on a daily basis. From doing dishes and assembling bakery boxes to washing Lillian's hair and cooking dinner...my hands are in constant motion. This is not a manicure post for people who live a pampered hands-free life. This is the manicure post for real life.
Almost ten years ago I discovered a combination of products and techniques that ensured my weekly at-home manicure would stay put for a full seven days. I have been using this method and these products consistently for close to a decade, and I swear by them.
Here is my routine.
First, remove any old polish completely. I cannot prove it, but my experience has taught me that anything other than acetone nail polish remover negatively affects the life span of my manicure. Skip the "nourishing" polish remover. Acetone is the way to go.
Next, trim or file your nails. I like to keep my nails short and straight, because I don't have super strong nails to begin with, and because I do not like them to get in my way. But, you do you. Nail length is a personal preference.
Once your nails are clean and trimmed, pick your polish (I only use Essie and OPI), get out your base coat and top coat, and find a counter or surface to work.
Right before you start to polish, give each nail a final swipe with a cotton ball soaked in nail polish remover. This will remove any residual oils on your nail and perfectly prep the nail bed to receive and hold the polish.
DO NOT TOUCH ANYTHING. Don't scratch your face. Don't brush your hair off your face. Don't pick up your phone. TOUCH NOTHING. This is the secret step that makes the magic work. Go directly from remover to painting.
Apply the base coat. My brand of choice is Sticky by CND Cosmetics.
Apply two thin layers of polish. Choose one you like. Make sure it is a quality brand.
Apply the top coat. Seche Vite is amazing. It adds a huge shiny finish and helps everything dry quickly.
This is my method. It works like a charm, and I have the polished nails to prove it! I hope these tips help you enjoy beautiful nails all week!