With the “Safer at Home” order in full-effect, maintaining your manicure is now, unfortunately, in your own hands.
So, as you try your best to replicate the technique of your most favorite and trusted nail technician, just remember, half the battle is having the right tools and the other part requires a tad bit of skill. You can purchase a standard manicure set for around $20-25 online or at your local pharmacy.
For Those Who Have Gel, Here’s The Removal Process
Many opt for gel manicures as they are incredibly durable and shiny, but when it comes to the removal process, it’s typically done in the salon because it can’t be taken off with regular nail polish remover.
The safest way to remove a gel manicure? It’s best to do it chemically.
Start by filing the top of each nail until the shine of the polish is completely gone. You’ll want to do this with a medium to coarse grit file.
Remember, it’s the shine that really creates the seal, which keeps solvents out. So, if you decide to skip the first step and go right into the next step, it won’t work. Trust me.
You know those little squares of foil your nail technician uses? You’re going to want to create those as well. So, in this next step, you’ll want to cut little squares of foil that will wrap around each fingertip.
Next, douse your cotton balls with pure acetone and place the pieces of cotton on top of each fingernail.
Tip: Start with the thumb as it will probably require more soaking time.
Wrap each nail and the cotton with foil. Then, be sure to keep the cotton and foil on for about five to 10 minutes before removing.
Remove the foil along with the cotton from each nail. Next, scrape off the gel with a scraping tool.
For Those Who Have Dip, Here’s The Removal Process
Dip powder manicures have been more trendy as of late but can be a more significant challenge to remove than gel polish.
The safest way to remove a dip manicure? Start with a file.
It’s best to start thinning the dip powder down with a file first and then soak each nail in acetone for 10 to 15 minutes. Tip: Be patient and if you find yourself scraping too hard to remove the dip powder, then it needs to soak longer. The dip should ultimately swell, making it far easier to remove without a lot of pressure.
Hydration is Key
With the constant need for handwashing and sanitizing during the coronavirus crisis, your hands could become intensely dehydrated. That said, we recommend opting for a gentle facial oil as they’re known to be great for hands as well.
Instead, push back cuticles very gently with a cuticle nipper. Tweezerman makes a great one called the Rockhard. And cut. Don’t pull it as you could potentially create a hangnail.
There’s a secret to polishing your own nails. Use the least amount of strokes possible.
Start by cleaning each nail with at least 70% alcohol. Avoid removers with oils and lanolin, as they can block adhesion of nail polish.
Put the hand down on a hard surface and stabilize it. And remember, the least amount of strokes you use, the smoother the polish is going to be.
Brush on a base coat as it helps your nail polish last longer and can help prevent nail staining. When it comes to applying your nail color, try drawing an imaginary line down the center of the nail and be sure to leave a hair-size margin between color and cuticle. Complete the stroke process down the left and right side of each nail.
Repeat this on the other side.
To clean up any color on the skin or cuticle, take an old lip or eyeliner brush, dip it in remover and clean up around the cuticle to remove any excess.
Apply a topcoat in the same manner, in thin, even coats.
Lastly, drop cuticle oil onto each nail. Opt for oil with jojoba and vitamin E and apply nightly to keep your polish flexible, shiny, and chip-free.
Need some nail color inspo? Check out a few of our picks below:
Romana Hai started blogging full-time in 2013 . Fashion Ambitions is more than a blog and more-or-less acts as a portfolio containing brands/collaborations and achievements. Although Romana was born and raised in New York, she currently resides in the Financial District of Boston, MA. Romana attended Penn State University and graduated in 2010 with two degrees: Economics from the Smeal College of Business and Telecommunications from the College of Communications. You can reach Romana at firstname.lastname@example.org.