Manicure Tips

Manicure Tips

Who wouldn't like to have the luxury to spend hours at a nail salon having their tips buffed, wrapped, and polished. But in the real world, who has the time? Just because you're short on time though (and sometimes on money) doesn't mean you should ignore your nails.

Here is a low-maintenance nailcare:

The Essential Tools

  • Nail clipper
  • Nail file (prefer a big, non metallic one)
  • Wooden cuticle stick
  • Cuticle oil
  • Three-sided nail buffer

Step 1: Prep cuticles.

Prep cuticles. Swipe a bit of cuticle oil across the base of each nail, being sure to cover the entire cuticle. The oil will condition your cuticle and nail, and soften the cuticle so it's easier to push back.

Trim Nails

Step 2: Trim nails.

Use your nail clipper to gently trim your nails to a length you like (anything over 1/4 inch past your fingertip is too long). Try to cut your nails straight across; doing so will allow you to custom-shape them with your file.

File Nails

Step 3: File nails

Choose a shape you like, either square or oval. Manicure experts suggest that your nail tip's shape should mirror the curve of your cuticle (that is, if your cuticles go straight across your nail bed, your tip should be squared; if your cuticles are softly rounded, your tip should be oval). But let your style preference be your primary guide. Don't worry about filing nails in one direction only; do, however, avoid filing into the sides of your nails, which will make them weak and prone to breaking.

Push Back Cuticles

Step 4: Push back cuticles.

By now the cuticle oil you applied earlier will have softened your cuticles, which makes them ready to be pushed back. (Why push them back, you ask? Because by removing any cuticle skin clinging to the nail, your nail naturally looks longer and more elegant.)

To push back cuticles, place the wooden stick flat against your nail and gently push toward your finger. The key word here is gentle, as pushing too hard can cause trauma to your nail or pull the cuticle away from the nail plate, opening it to infection. If your cuticle skin is stubborn, don't fight it; leave it for your next manicure.

Buff Away

Step 5: Buff away.

For women who don't have the time or patience to polish, buffing is the perfect fix. Begin by swiping the roughest side of your buffer across each nail; this smoothes away ridges and discoloration. Next, take the second roughest surface, and swipe it over each nail. This further smoothes any roughness left behind by the first surface. Finally, swipe the smooth side over each nail until it shines.

Wash Hands

Step 6: Wash hands

Wash your hands with warm water and apply a soft moisturiser. You've got great nails!

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