One of my best childhood memories was painting the antique doll my great godmother had bought me with a sparkly nude coat of nail polish. I thought my doll looked perfect then as she sparkled in the sunlight from my paint job; she looked beautiful. Now I’m sorry I ruined an antique doll in good condition with her original clothes.
As I grew older, I painted my nails finding a way to do it so that my nails looked as perfect as possible as if a professional aesthetician had painted them. By high school I was doing my nails perfectly and sometime around then I began to invest in a good clear top coat which, made it possible for any pedicure or manicure to last a week and a half. And 11 years later I go for manicures sometimes at the salon but most often I paint the nails on my fingers and toes, although often enough I do like to get an actual pedicure at a reputable salon. I like a place on Jasper Ave in Edmonton called the Beauty Lounge.
As I’ve grown up, trends have changed in nail polish. In the last 5 or 6 years we’ve gone from regular nail polish, to gel polish, and to shellac polish. If you can afford it, or are doing something special, shellac polish is the best way to have your fingers and toes painted because shellac nails will last about three weeks if you’re careful with them. But on a regular basis, I like to paint with plain simple nail polish and a top and a base coat. And that’s what I would like to teach you about today: How to give yourself an excellent and simple manicure and pedicure.
1. First of all, take off any nail polish left on your fingers or toes from before. Don’t peel the nail polish off as this can remove the top layer of your nail.
2. Fill a little cubbie or container of some kind with hot water and add some bath salts to the water. Soak your hands and feet and use the bath salts as a great exfoliator, especially on your feet. After you soak them, work on your feet first. File the callouses off with a foot file and never ever use one of those items that grates the dead skin off your foot. That tool is dangerous and you can easily cut yourself and get an infection in the cut on your foot. Don’t do this especially if you are at nail salon as this tool may not have been cleaned well.
3. Take some cuticle oil or any kind of oil you have sitting around ( argan, cocoanut oil etc.) and being careful how much you put on, place a small amount of oil on each of your cuticles and push your cuticle back with an orange stick (a little stick that with a diagonal cut at the end).Take a cuticle trimmer or even a small nail clippers and snip away all the dead skin by your nails.
4.Run some nail polish remover over your nails to get rid of the oil and file your nails into a square or oval shape.
5.Begin with your bottom coat of nail polish. The ideal method is to paint your nails in 3 strokes but this does not always work. And a tip here, if you don’t want to get a base coat wherever you buy nail polish, use your top coat as a base coat and top coat. There are many different types of nail polish and a product that has more pigment is much preferred because you only have to do two coats of colour not three or four. The nail polish brands I like the best are: OPI, Sparitual, and QUO by Orly at Shoppers Drug Mart. A good place to get your nail polish online is http://www.nailpolishcanada.com or Sephora, which also stock other brands such as Butter London, Formula X, and Zoya.
6. Once your first nail polish coat is dry, put on your first coat of colour. Let that coat dry really well before putting on your second coat of coloured nail polish.
7. Once your two coats of colour are nearly dry, paint on the top coat and let your nails dry. A couple of hours should be good enough but if your nails are still sticky or tacky let them dry for longer. Top coats are clear and bottom coats can be clear or coloured white. I prefer a clear base coat because it takes less nail polish coats to cover. Using a white base coat may mean you need an extra coat of colour and more drying time.
8. To help your nails dry you may spray them with a product that helps your nail polish dry faster. Check out Sephora or your local Nail Salon for this useful spray or oil. Clean up any nail polish around your nails with a Q-tip soaked in nail polish remover.
9. To keep the polish on your fingernails a half of week longer, put on another coat of top coat to stop your nails from starting to chip. This is especially important in ensuring that your manicure remains looking sleek and professional.
10. Enjoy your nails. Toes usually last longer than fingers so you should be able to get about three weeks out of your pedicure and you can also put more top coat on if your toe nails begin to chip. Usually, your fingernails should keep polished for a week to a week and a half.
11. Clean all your tools in soapy warm water to disinfect them every few times you do your nails.
There are so many details you can add to your nails once you have painted them your desired color. You can add details such as rhinestones to them before you do your top coat, You can also try painting them with nail polish pens for nail art and designs. One can also use tape to create geometric lines and paint your nail partially another color over your chosen color of nail polish. You can also paint over your nails with a clear coat of glitter or sparkles in gold or silver. This is especially great for the holiday season. Finally, one can not forget doing a classic french nail using little strips you can buy at the drugstore to keep the top of your nails white and in the perfect shape. However, you choose to paint your nails have a fantastic time because doing your nails is supposed to be fun, not a chore.