How to Do an At-Home Manicure

Skip the salon and go the DIY route. Follow these steps for a professional finish”we promise!

File
The goal of filing is to get the shape, length and look you desire, while minimizing chances of in-grown nails and hangnails. To get nails even, file straight across (in one direction only), and then smooth the edges with the soft side of your file.  

Soak
After removing any leftover polish, fill a bowl with warm water and add a few drops of your favourite essential oil. Let your hands soak for 5 minutes to soften cuticles and nail beds and enjoy the soothing scent.  

Exfoliate
Choose a gentle exfoliating scrub and massage it over your hands and forearms to slough away dead skin cells. Rinse with lukewarm water and pat dry with a towel. 

Cuticle care
Choose a cuticle cream and apply a small dollop to each nail bed. Massage it into your cuticles to soften them, and then gently push them back. Do not trim cuticles, as this could cause infection. But you can trim hangnails back if there is an excess amount.  

Massage
Don’t skip this step just because you’re getting a mani at home, not a salon. A self-massage can be just as relaxing and beneficial, and you can focus on areas of your hands that need a little extra TLC.  

Polish
Wipe any massage cream off your nail beds with a cotton ball and nail polish remover, in order to start with a clean canvas and help polish stay put. Start with a clear basecoat, rotating hands, and then move on to the first coat of polish. If you’re doing a French manicure, do the white coat first, following the natural line of your nail, and going only in one direction. Follow up with a light shade of pink. When applying polish, don’t put too much on the brush. Start from the middle point of your nail, just above the cuticle and then fan the brush out and up, only polishing in one direction (up). Repeat with a second coat and then move on to a topcoat to protect the polish and make your mani last longer.

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Tags: French manicure, manicure, nail polish, nails

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