Q: “My nails are in horrible shape, and I can’t afford to maintain them with manicures all fall and winter (plus, polish ALWAYS chips off a day or two after for me, anyway). Do you have any suggestions for giving my nails some style and color without having to put too much effort into it?”
A: Hi Modern Ink readers!
I’m totally obsessed with cute manicures. Pinterest has soooo many great pictures for ideas you should check out; however, for me, with modeling and contracting, I have to stay pretty neutral. I can’t have much fun with colors or patterns. My toes on the other hand, well that’s a different story!
Here are some money-saving tips for having great fingernails and manicures at a fraction of the price.
Your ‘at home’ kit:
You’ll want to grab a ‘fine’ file—there really isn’t a need for a very rough file. (I prefer ones that are four-sided, as they’re easier to hold).
You’ll also need a 4-way buffer, nail clippers, a cuticle clipper, cotton balls, polish remover, and a little zip-up bag to put it all in. (A pencil box works fine, too.)
Lastly, Vitamin E oil, or the like . . . it’s a must-have.
After removing any polish, wash your hands in very warm water. Trim and/or file your nails, push back, and trim your cuticles.
Using a rougher side of the buffer, go down each nail—with the grain—or buff very gently.
Next, put a few drops of oil at the cuticle base and massage over your whole nail. Let sit for a few minutes.
Make sure to wipe your nail with nail polish remover before applying nail polish.
A few classic staples to have: a natural french manicure pink, white, a shade or two of red, and another favorite color (can be anything: blue, purple, black, magenta, etc.).
Using a clear top coat over your nail color is usually a good idea, but it’s not so important to use a base coat—and don’t apply any one coat too thickly.
The most important tip I can give with your own manicure is GIVE IT TIME TO DRY. Give yourself a proper allotment of time to let your nails dry—at least 20-30 minutes. It seems like a long time but it’s needed. If not, as soon as you get your hands wet, or try to put on a pair of socks, BAM. RUINED!
Oh! And also, a fun, easily changeable way to color your nails . . . try those peel, stick, and file stickers by Sally Hansen. They are super cute, and you can try a new one for any occasion.