Doing a good manicure at home takes some time and investment in tools. My manicures last about 7 days and I find working on my manicure to be relaxing and nice little bit of “me” time. Here’s my tips for manicures at home.
- You will need to store your polishes. I started off with 5 pinks and 5 oranges. They fit in the drawer on my bedside table just fine (they do need to be kept out of light and heat). When my collection began to grow, it started to really stress the hardware on the drawer. Nail polish is actually pretty heavy!
I bought a rotating display for my collection and it lives in our guest room which normally has the curtains drawn. It holds about 140 bottles.
- I file my nails while they are still polished, before I remove and prepare for the next manicure. I use a glass file, which never wears out!
I only clip my nails in an emergency and I think my nails are much healthier for it. After getting the shape right, I lightly file the tip of each nail from the top at a 45-degree-angle, kind of thinning out the tip of the nail.
- To remove old nail polish, I use nail polish remover and exfoliating cotton pads. The bumpier the surface, the easier it is to get the polish off!
For glitter polishes, I use the foil method. I buy aluminum foil from the dollar store (you do not need high quality foil). Tear two strips off the roll, 3 to 4 inches wide. Use scissors to cut each strip into 3 squares. Fold a cotton pad in half and soak with remover. Wrap around the nail, then wrap with a foil square to hold it in place. Do all the nails on one hand and wait for about 5 minutes. Squeeze the nail and twist the foil packet off. Use another freshly soaked cotton pad to remove any remaining bits of polish. Repeat on the other hand.
- Next, I trim my cuticles. I just trim away anything that is on top of the nail. It is also fine to just push this skin back.
- Use a basecoat. After painting each nail, go back and paint the back side of any fingertip that shows above your finger. My favorites are CND Stickey and Nubar.
When my nails are peeling, I use NailTek Intensive Therapy-II. Be sure to read all the NailTek types to see which one matches the problems you have.
- My favorite nail polishes are from OPI, China Glaze, and Zoya. There are several bloggers who get the latest polishes and show swatches (it’s so hard to tell what the color will look like just looking at the bottles). OPI has an app that allows you to match a hand to your skin color and see the latest collection colors on the nails. Drugstore brands that also work fine are Revlon and Sally Hansen. Specialty finishes I like include glitter, shatter or crackle, and sand or texture. Use at least two coats of polish for your manicure, and be sure to give a polish swipe to the tips and back of each nail.
- Finally, use a topcoat. My favorites are Seche Vite and Poshe.
These are fairly thick and set up quickly. For touch ups, I like Essie Good to Go. Again, be sure to give a swipe to the tips and back of each nail.
- In addition, with a big collection, your polishes may get too thick between uses. I keep Seche Restore on hand to adjust the polish’s thickness.
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase using product links, I’ll receive compensation towards maintaining this blog.
- Nail Polish Table Rack Display (Hold Up To 144 Bottles) Spinable
- Premium Nail Art Quality Manicure Crystal Glass Nail Files Set of 5 by Cheeky®
- Tweezerman LTD Cuticle Nipper
- Nailtek Intensive Therapy-2 Treatment for Soft Peeling Nails, 0.5 Fluid Ounce
- CND: Treatments/Prep Stickey Base Coat, 0.33 oz
- [Nubar] T304 Foundation Base Coat
- Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Nail Coat, 0.5 Ounce
- Poshe Super Fast Drying Top Coat, 0.5 Fluid Ounce
- Seche Restore Nail Polish, 0.5 Fluid Ounce
Favorite nail blogs
- Top ten nail polish blogs: https://blogging.org/blog/top-nail-polish-blogs/
- Vampy Varnish: https://www.vampyvarnish.com/
Let’s talk story
I enjoy doing my nails. My mother had very elegant, long nails and her favorite color was Revlon Cherries in the Snow. There was a time when I was younger that I did not feel comfortable expressing myself with nail polish. But once I started doing manicures, I felt that it gives me a fun and creative outlet. You can check out my weekly creations on Instagram!