My At Home Pro-Manicure

June 16, 2011 deargabbybeautyguru

I am addicted to nail polish. Anyone who knows me knows I sport the “sassy nail,” meaning the ring finger nail on my left hand has some sort of design or different color. I think it’s super cute and a fun way to showcase some nail art without going overboard. Many people think I wear acrylics (which I did for a long time but they completely ruined my nails – it took about a year for them to grow back healthy!) because my nails are long and my polish stays on forever… literally it takes me a good half hour to remove my polish when I want to change the color. I rarely get polish chips but my polish will grow-out looking as if I have acrylics. So how do I get my polish to stay so well? Here is my coveted nail polish routine… (Click the links to buy the products on Amazon.com)

Step 1: Remove old polish and file nails. Buff rough edges and keep corners slightly rounded. Remember not to “saw-file” (going back and forth too fast in small saw-like motions) it will lead split nails.

Step 2: Apply a layer of O.P.I ChipSkip ($9, amazon.com) to each nail. This is a nail dehydrator meaning it removes all oils assuring the base coat will adhere properly.

Step 3: Apply a coat of O.P.I Natural Nail Base Coat ($4.80; amazon.com). This is hands down the best base coat I have ever used. It dries super-fast and leaves a smooth finish under polish.

Step 4: Apply two coats of your favorite nail polish. Make sure you allow two to three minutes of dry-time between each coat to prevent smudging. Let the polish dry for 5 to 7 minutes before applying top coat to avoid polish bubbles.

Step 5: Apply a top coat. Lately I’ve been using O.P.I Top Coat ($4.65; amazon.com) which is good but I also like Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat ($4.30; amazon.com) and Nail Tek-Maintenance Plus I ($6.99; amazon.com. This is actually a nail strengthener – but it works great as a top coat!)

Step 6: Use the hair dryer on a cool setting and “blow-dry” your nails for about 10 minutes. This will help prevent smudging. A good trick to know if your nails are dry if to touch your two pinky nails to each other – if you feel them stick a bit then and wait another 5-7 minutes, if not you’re good to go.

Hot Polish Colors for the Season: I am always a lover of bright pink on toes in the summer. What’s your go-to summer shade?

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Entry Filed under: Hands and Feet

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