How to do a Manicure
Manicure is not so difficult to do at
home and if you don't feel like doing it on your own, you can always
go to a nail saloon and have a professional do it for you. Going to a
saloon takes more time, and unless taking care of your appearance is
your only occupation, chances are that you will do your manicure more
often on your own, than use the services of a professional
manicurist. So, knowing how to do your manicure does not hurt at all.
The first step in doing your
manicure is guess what? Washing your hands of course! Yes, if you
want to have brilliant manicure, removing the dirt from your hands
and nails is only the beginning. If washing with soap alone is not
enough to remove the stains from your nails, you can apply a nail
whitener. Depending on the color you plan to use, stains might be
necessary to remove or not. If you plan to use a transparent nail
polish or a nail polish in a light color, leaving the stains on your
nails will spoil the effect for sure. Also, if you have dirt or oil
on your nails before you apply the polish, this will lead to a bumpy
coating that will last for shorter.
If there are remnants of a
previous nail polish, use an orange stick (wrapped in cotton) soaked
with nail polish remover and clean the leftovers. Even if you plan
to use the same nail polish, these remnants cannot stay because they
will make the nail look bumpy.
After you have washed your hands,
dry them with a soft towel. But be careful, because wet finger nails
get softer and can easily be broken. Don't apply any creams because
this will prevent the polish from spreading equally on the nail
Next comes nail cutting and
shaping. This can be done with a pair of clippers or scissors first
and then use a file to shape it more precisely. There are many
recommendations regarding which shape is best but it is up to you to
decide if you prefer rounder or sharper cuts. Generally oval shape
works best for all kinds of fingers except very thin ones. If you
have very thin fingers, shape them square and round only the nails.
Otherwise, make the whole nail round because this is giving the
illusion of longer fingers.
When you are ready with shaping
your nails, run them over an old pantyhose to see if they will snag
it. If they snag it, there is work left for the file.
Next, apply a softener to your
cuticles. Wait a couple of minutes for the softener to dry out.
After the softener has dried out, put your hands under hot water for
a minute or two and after that gently push the cuticles back. Don't
cut the cuticles because this will make them harder and puffy.
Now, it is time for the base coat.
Be patient, the polish itself comes next. Apply one layer of base
coat, starting from the cuticles and continuing towards the edges.
The base coat, as well as the nail polish itself, is done in three
strokes – the first is in the center and the other two are on
the sides. However, never paint the whole width of the nail, leave a
couple of millimeters on each site without a coat and a polish. Wait
a couple of minutes for the base coat to dry out completely and then
you are ready to go on with the nail polish itself.
Before you start polishing, shake
the polish well because if it has not been used for a while, it is
possible that there is a thick residue at the bottom.
Apply the polish in a similar way
to the one described for the base coat. Be careful not to paint
outside the boundaries of the nail and especially on the skin,
though you can always remove these trails later with the help of
some nail polish remover.
Wait a couple of minutes for the
polish to dry out. You can wave your hands, to make it faster but
don't use driers or other appliances.
This step is optional, though it
is strongly recommended – polish once more. There is nothing
wrong (though it is certainly not professional) if you leave your
nails with only one layer of nail polish but for brighter colors and
for a better overall effect, you'd better apply the polish once
After the last layer of polish has
tried out, it is time for the top coat. Again, this is not mandatory
but generally it is much better to apply it because it gives your
manicure a more finished look and makes it more durable.
The last step is to sanitize all
your equipment (files, clippers, etc.) with alcohol, let it dry and
store it for the next use. Even if you are the only one who uses
that particular equipment (and it is really bad to share such
private items with somebody else), this small last step can save you
a lot of trouble if you have had by accident picked up some kind of
The steps described here are for
manicure. If your are interested to learn how to make your pedicure,
check this article.
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