Beauty Blogger Top Ten Tuesday – 10 Tips for a Perfect Manicure

Manicure Top Ten.pdf-page-001

  1. Crystal/glass nail files. I can’t live without glass nail files. My nails are very thin and soft and regular nail files just shred them up. Glass nail files give you a perfect edge without damaging your nails. Make the filing in one direction rule obselete.
  2. Gel manicures. I finally have an at home LED gel manicure system and it has finally given me the opportunity to have longer nails. I simply do a gel manicure with a natural sheer nude shade and use it as a base for regular manicures. My nails are able to grow long and strong beneath the gel and I don’t even need to keep the gel manicure on at all times.
  3. Stay in the lines. Maybe this is harder for people with less steady hands but I can’t understand the time and effort involved in “cleaning up” a manicure. It just seems so much easier and more practical for me to paint my nails keeping the polish a few millimetres from the cuticle to begin with. Not that I can achieve this perfectly every time but good enough that I don’t feel the need to spend all kinds of time with acetone and paint brushes etc.
  4. Cuticle clippers. When I am not maintaining my nails and cuticles properly I get hang nails. It took me a long time to break down and invest in cuticle clippers because they are so pricey but when I finally did I understood their worth immediately. Unlike clipping them with nail clipper the cuticle clippers take the hangnail off cleanly and puts a stop to it for good. It is also the only really safe way to trim back excess cuticle after using a cuticle remover and pushing them back.
  5. Cuticle remover. I am still searching for a great one but have been getting by with the Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover in the Blue Bottle. It works fairly well. If I keep up with using a cuticle remover and pushing them back on a regular basis I can achieve the invisible cuticle look of my dreams. Unfortunately I am not very good and keeping up with it!
  6. Cuticle Oil – A key to not only healthy cuticles, but more importantly healthy nails, is the regular use of a cuticle oil or balm of some sort. My current fave is the Dior Huile Abricot Daily Nutritive Serum and Ecrinal Strengthening Cream with ANP but I actually haven’t done too much experimenting with different products. Looking forward to hearing the favourites of our other Beauty Blogger Top Ten Tuesday team!
  7. Paint over tips – If you want your manicure to last longer you need to remember to paint over the tip of your nail. This helps prevent shrinkage and tip wear.
  8. Fast dry top coat – I don’t know how I survived before I started using fast dry top coats. This ensures your manicure dries in only a matter of minutes so you can avoid smudges, sheet marks, dents, and all the other hazards life inflicts on a manicure that isn’t completely cured. Who has 20-30 mins + to sit there and not touch anything! My favourite of the moment is the Dior Top Coat Abricot because I have been using it for months and it hasn’t thickened up on me like other popular fast dry top coats like Seche Vite.
  9. Use a base coat – I am actually surprised the number of people that don’t use base coats. They think it is just an extra step that they don’t need or have time for. Base coats not only prevent discolouration of your nails but they also even out the nails surface, aid the nail colour in going on more evenly, and bind the colour to the nail to ensure your manicure lasts longer. The base coat, and not only the top coat, have a role in the longevity of your manicure.
  10. Use hand cream frequently. Dry hands mean dry, ragged cuticles which in turn mean dry damaged nails. Apply a good hand cream regularly to keep hands looking soft and healthy because no manicure looks good on tight, chapped, wrinkly ‘ol hands! I love the L’Occitane hand creams.

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  • http://www.blushingnoir.com/ Brooke @ Blushing Noir

    Great tips! I am too lazy to want to clean up, so I try my best to paint in the lines too ;)

    • http://www.PerilouslyPale.com/ Christa Potter

      Ya lazy is a great way to describe my manicure habits! LOL

  • http://www.phyrra.net/ Phyrra

    Hand cream is a must!

    • http://www.PerilouslyPale.com/ Christa Potter

      Absolutely! About 20x a day with the weather here!

  • http://www.beautifulmakeupsearch.com/ Beautiful Makeup Search

    Great tips! I use hand cream multiple times a day this winter.

    • http://www.PerilouslyPale.com/ Christa Potter

      Ya I can’t get enough this winter. It’s brutal! And gloves are a must too.

  • marciaf

    I go through stages with hand cream. I know I need to use it more but I wash my hands constantly. I’m going to go put some on this minute.

    • http://www.PerilouslyPale.com/ Christa Potter

      I find wearing gloves helps reduce the need for hand cream a lot too.

  • Arathael

    I remember reading a blogger who said learning how to apply color cleanly was important, which was good advice. Now I only have to try to clean up a few errors, instead of create clean lines around all my cuticles by removing too much polish. Just takes practice!

    • http://www.PerilouslyPale.com/ Christa Potter

      Yes. With practice you can do it pretty darn quick!

  • http://polishinsomniac.blogspot.com jbrobeck

    Can you belive I have never tried L’Occitane hand creams?

    • http://www.PerilouslyPale.com/ Christa Potter

      You should! They are lovely. Lovely texture and scents.

  • Laurie Brown

    I keep trying base coats, but nothing seems to stay on my nails! I make sure my nails are clean of all lotions and oils, and make sure any water is dried off them, and still, the bloody things chip right down to the nail. Within a day. With a fast dry top coat. I’m about to give up!

    • http://www.PerilouslyPale.com/ Christa Potter

      Have you tried wiping your nails down with alcohol after washing? Even hand soaps have oils etc in them.

      • Laurie Brown

        Well, this may post twice.. I’ve tried rubbing alcohol to no avail. I haven’t tried SD-40; I have a container of it around somewhere and need to give it a try.

  • http://www.scarletbeauty.ca/ Jenn @ Scarlet Beauty

    Great tips! I’m a bit obsessive with my hand cream, I have at least one with me everywhere I go. I really love the Body Shop Almond one.

    • http://www.PerilouslyPale.com/ Christa Potter

      I will have to try that one. The L’Occitane Almond one is one of my faves.

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