Recently, I’ve gotten into the habit of wearing nail extensions and haven’t really taken time out to take care of my real nails. I’m no newbie to fixing artificial nails so I’m familiar with all the negative effects that come with it. I’ve had broken nails after taking nail extensions off and even the roughness that comes with it and it has dawned on me that even though I like extensions, my natural nails need love too.
Giving your nails a break once in a while is a major plus for your hands. A great way to do this is getting a manicure. I enjoy getting manicures because at the end I can visibly see how clean my nails look afterwards. So I decided to share some of my tips to getting the perfect mani with you. The results? Clean and healthy looking nails. Here’s how.
Step 1: Wipe away any old nail polish using a cotton ball and a non-acetone nail polish remover. Acetone based nail treatments dry out nails leaving them looking dehydrated and chapped.
Step 2: Cut nails to desired length using a nail cutter. Razor blades are dangerous and more often than not are not precise and make nails uneven. After cutting file into desired shape using a nail file. Remember to file in one direction to avoid damaging your matrix which is the root of your nail.
Step 3: Place your hands in a bowl of warm water. The warm water loosens dead skin still attached to the nail and hands. To get really great smelling results, add scented salts or perfumed hand wash to the mix. Leave to soak for 10 minutes.
Step 4: Exfoliation should be your next step. After soaking your hands apply an exfoliating cream/ scrub and massage the hands gently in circular motions. When you’re done, rinse hands till clean.
Step 5: Moisturizing hands are a huge part of getting a great manicure. Massage a moisturizing cream into the hands preferably while hands are still damp and as the water is drying off it will seal in the moisture leaving your hands soft and moist.
Step 6: From using our hands on various materials and substances we usually have oil residue on the nail plate. It is important to wipe this off. After wiping this off, push back any outstanding cuticle using an orange stick and apply a layer of base coat nail polish. Apply two coats of your chosen nail polish and finish off with a layer of top coat when dry.
Note: O.P.I’s Nail Envy Treatment acts as a great way to make nails significantly stronger and a great varnish over nail polish.
Step 7: To complete the manicure with a truly professional finish, apply some cuticle oil on the nail bed (ensure your polish is dry) and massage into dry and rough area to seal in moisture. A convenient alternative to the cuticle oil is olive oil.
And there you have it. Clean, soft & well moisturized hands in seven easy steps. Remember to read the labels behind to make sure you aren’t damaging your nails. Enjoy it, try it out & share your ideas on home manicures and how you get yours done.
Photo Credit: fashaddix.com | stylenest.co.uk |
Ameera Abraham is the Creative Director at The Nail Bar, a luxury nail spa and wellness centre located in Abuja. She’s a qualified aesthetician and is passionate about all things beauty!