The one nail trend that’ll never date is a perfectly polished manicure. And the good news is, a DIY manicure is easier than ever to achieve without heading to the nail salon.
A flawless DIY manicure adds instant appeal to your look, and a quick change of polish can take you from your day at the office to a night on the town. Whether it’s vixen red or cool blue, pops of colour will keep your fingers on the pulse of the trend stakes this season.
Give your hands a little extra attention and achieve the perfect DIY manicure with this step-by-step guide by well-known nail technician, Glenis Baptiste:
Start by filing nails into a neat, short length, its more modern regardless of what colour you wear.
Condition your cuticles, either by warming some oil in warm water and soaking your fingertips for 4-5 minutes, or using your usual face scrub. Massage into the cuticle area, letting the treatment soak into the skin. Rinse or wipe off.
Gently push cuticles back now that they’re softened. Remember skin is elastic so a nourishing cuticle treatment will make the skin more supple. Use circular movements to gently pick the cuticle up off the nail bed.
Massage in cuticle cream or oil, then take a cotton pad soaked in polish remover and wipe over the nail. Called “squeaking” this primes nails before you apply polish.
Ready to paint…
Start with a good base coat and strengthener
Use the base coat most suitable for your nails. For nails that need strengthening, look for one that has added ingredients to keep nails strong and in tip-top condition. We like Mavala Scientifique Nail Hardener, R280.
Pick your colour
Then apply two thin coats of polish, leaving at least 90 seconds between coats. Want your nails to pop? Bright pink is on-trend this season and looks fabulous on neat, polished nails. Try Sorbet Long Wear Nail Polish in Love Bug, R90.
Seal the deal
Finish with a top coat to prevent smudging, protect nails and give them a lovely high-gloss shine. Rimmel Nail Nurse Base & Top Coat, R69,95, keeps nails stronger and shinier.
TOP TIP: Be patient when letting nails dry. Use them too soon and ruin all your hard work. Give them plenty of time to dry, then you’ll have a manicure that’ll last.
Clean the edges
Some salons dip a brush in nail polish remover to help tidy up any mistakes, especially with dark polish, which can look unsightly when it seeps into the cuticle. At home, use a corrector such as Essence Studio Nails Nail Polish Corrector Pen, R59,95 to finish the job fast and give you a professional finish.
TOP TIP: File nails once a week to prevent breaking or splitting. Nails are made up of several fine layers, so no matter how good your nails are, if you let them grow continuously, the weakened ends will split as the layers start to separate.