Many believe that the best set of nails come at a hefty price. That isn’t necessarily true. Sure gel polish and acrylics do look fantastic but it really is possible to have a stunning manicure at a quarter of the cost right at home. If your at-home manicures up until this point have only been goopy and messy, we’re about to change that. Find out how you can get the best manicure of your life for a fraction of the cost with these 5 hacks.
1. Start Right
Before you even begin painting your nails, make sure they are well prepared for it. Soak a cotton pad in nail polish remover, leave on each nail for 10 – 15 seconds, then remove the old polish, which will come out much easier. If it has stained your nails, apply white toothpaste to your nails, scrub gently and wash off after a few minutes for a clean finish.
2. Base First
Don’t ever skip a coat of base polish. It may seem like an unnecessary step to breeze through when you’re short on time but take the effort and paint a thin layer of base nail polish. Base acts like a canvas for the nail which helps the final colour appear more vibrant, adhere to the surface of the nail and prevent chipping.
3. Cleanup Is Key
Don’t you just hate those messy bits of nail polish that get stuck to your cuticle when painting? Not only do they look terribly untidy, they are a dead giveaway of a subpar manicure. After you apply a base, use a cotton bud to neatly apply Vaseline at the sides of the nail over the skin with none on the nail itself. Paint your nails as usual and wipe off the Vaseline for a neat finish.
4. Card Tricks
Can never seem to get the French manicure right on your own? A simple business card will do the trick. Position any old paper business card horizontally across the nail, just below the tip according to the space on the nail for the desired white strip. Tape it down on either side, keep your nail still and paint the tip in white. All done, now wasn’t that simple?
5. Ice It
The most precarious step of any manicure is the drying the nails once painted. To do it, immerse your hands completely in a tub of ice water for a minute or two. This will harden the nail polish and quicken the drying process so no more errant smudges occur.