Don’t you just hate it when only a day or two after you’ve done your nails, your manicure looks ruined? And there’s nothing uglier than chipped nails. Every girl that takes care of her nails should learn a few tricks to keep her manicure lasting longer and look perfect for more than a day. Luckily, it’s not impossible to have awesome manicure even if you’re doing it yourself; just follow these 10 tips.
1. Shape your nails
First and foremost, before you even apply any products onto your nails, you need to shape them properly. Make sure to sweep the file in the same direction as our usual sweeping it left and right can damage nails. Only after you’ve shaped them and smoothened the edges can you start applying nail polish.
2. Avoid products with alcohol
Many soaps and sanitizers that contain perfume also contain a certain amount of alcohol. You don’t feel it, but your nails certainly do. The alcohol eats away the nail polish which is why your manicure lasts shorter and looks worn out. Opt for the milder soaps without alcohol as they are also healthier for your skin.
3. Bring your own nail polish
If you’re doing a manicure in a nail salon, try bringing your own nail polish. It’s a well-known fact that nail salons use thinners that are designed to prolong the life of the nail polish. However, they can also affect the nail polish in bad ways, changing its colors and making bubbles. This all leads to the polish that peels more easily.
4. Avoid heat for the next 12 hours
Even though your manicure may seem dry in a few minutes, experts say that it can actually take your nail polish up to 12 hours to fully harden. This is why heat could damage your manicure and should be avoided. Steer clear from hair dryers during that time and don’t wash your hands with hot water. Moreover, you should even avoid blowing on your nails to make them dry faster, it doesn’t have the effect you want.
5. Remove any “leftover” products from your nails
Even if your nails seem clean, there could be some oils or nail polish from your last manicure. That’s why you should wipe them once again with nail-polish remover or, if you’re out of that, you can use white vinegar. Dip your hands in the solution of water and vinegar as this is the most natural way to get rid of all that could prevent the nail-polish from sticking nicely to your nails.
6. Keep your nails hydrated
Your nails need care, just like your skin. You can’t expect them to look perfect if you’re not keeping them hydrated and healthy – they will crack and peel, just like your skin. You should make sure you hydrate your nails and use nail oils every day. Not only will it keep your nails and cuticles in order, it will also help with your manicure. Healthy nails retain nail polish longer and oil prevents the polish from drying out.
7. …but make them dry before the manicure
All of that said, your nails still need to be dry and oil-free at the moment of applying your basecoat. If there is any residue of oil, moisturizer or even water, it will prevent the nail-polish from adhering properly to your nails. Besides, water makes your nail expand, even though you don’t notice it, which makes the nail-polish crack once they go back to their original size. So, avoid washing your hands directly before the manicure and wipe them with lint-free cotton pads instead.
8. Roll the nail polish before using it
We usually have the habit of shaking the nail polish before using it, no matter if it has been standing on our shelf for months or if we use it often. But the truth is, we should get rid of that habit because it destroys the nail polish and potentially ruins our manicure. Shaking the nail-polish creates bubbles in it, which then, result in cracks and chips once we apply it.
9. Choose your basecoat and topcat wisely
When it comes to the basecoat and topcoat, there are better and worse options, as always. Try using a rubberized basecoat. Even though it’s a bit pricey, it will be worth your money since it helps the nail polish adhere better to the nail. Also, to make your manicure really last, apply two layers of basecoat – the first one on the top half of your nail, and the second one on the whole nail. When it comes to the topcoat, opt for those that don’t promise “quick dry” because they usually evaporate just as quickly and leave your nail polish vulnerable.
10. Close in the edges.
You will agree that the part of the nail most prone to chipping is the top edge. But there is a trick to prevent chipping even from that spot. While you’re applying the nail polish, pay special attention to the top edge of the nail and “seal” the edge with the nail polish. Run the brush along the edge of the nail to prolong the manicure effectively.