Monday, April 7, 2008

Back to Basics: Applying nail polish

This ongoing series will tackle basic nail health, but since this is my first REAL post, let's talk polish, ok?

  • start with clean nails, to help your polish adhere better. Lots of people have different methods of getting all the oil off your nail so that a base coat sticks better. Here are some ways:
    • swiping the nail with some vinegar
    • swiping the nail with your nail polish remover
    • applying some hand sanitizer
  • apply a coat of base coat. This helps your polish color stays on longer, and most protect your natural nail from the staining that the polish color and the sun can cause. Some base coats are also treatments to strengthen your nails, others help fill in natural ridges so that the polish goes on smoothly
  • apply polish. Many companies will advise you to do only 1-2 coats, but to be honest it all depends on the type of polish. Most will require more than 1 coat. Do however many coats you want, though as a warning, past 5 coats makes a polish harder to dry, harder to remove, and may be thick and look bad because of dragging.
  • apply top coat. Top coats also help your color stay on longer by sealing in your color and making it less susceptible to chipping. It also brightens a dull finish, making it shiny and pretty.
**Remember to always apply your polish in well-ventilated areas. Keep your door open, have a window open, or turn on some small table fans/standing fans to encourage circulation of air in the room (ceiling fans can make your polish dry funky sometimes)**

I will definitely go more in depth about top coats and base coats later, don't you fret (there's a lot of ground to cover!). This is just the tip of the iceberg, but if you're not a die-hard polish fan, I will also include lots in my back to basics series to make your nails look fabulous without having to get a professional manicure every week. So stick around!

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