Our nails are in need of a major overhaul; they’re chipped, they’re lacklustre and our cuticles are all over the shop. We’ve recruited the wonderful Emer McGillion of SkinKandy.ie to sort us out. Not only is she great for a Gelish or a CND Shellac, she’s also a whizz at the DIY Nail. Here, she shares her top tips so that we, yourselves included, can keep your nails in tip top condition at home.
1. File your nails into your desired shape using an emery board. If you have brittle nails, try and round them at the side. Long, square brittle nails can snap a lot.
2. Push back your cuticles – polish can bleed into the cuticles making it look messy.Use an orange wood stick to gently push cuticles toward the base of the nail plate, ideally after a shower when they are softer. Don’t push too hard or scrape your nail.
3. Use some nail polish remover on your nails, before you apply polish – this will remove any excess oil or creams from your nail plate so the polish will last longer!
4. Always use a base coat – not only will it prevent the nails from staining but it creates a foundation for the nails polish with which to adhere. You can also buy base coats that will fill in any ridges that you may have, so your polish will be smoother.
5. Three strokes is all you need. Make sure there is a bead of polish on the brush, starting at the base of the nails, press frimly down and swipe down the middle of the nail. Do this again on the left side and then the right side of the nail.
6. Apply 2-3 thin coats of the colour you have chosen. The first coat will usually be more transparent and a bit wishy-washy but the true colour will develop with the 2nd coat. Three coats of thin polish are much better than 1 or 2 thick coats. Polish will dry quicker and have more lasting power.
7. Use a cotton bud or an old lip liner brush soaked in polish remover to clean up any mistakes.
8. A top coat is always necessary to finish off your nails. Not only will it give it shine, but will set the polish which again means longer lasting nails! Go for a quick drying top coat which will help speed up the drying process.
9. Avoid nail polish remover with acetone as it can really dry out your nails if it is used too often.
10. Remember not to over buff your nails, it can thin your nail making them weak & softer.
11. Keep polish in the fridge to stop them from going gloopy. Heat and sunlight can alter the consistency and colour.
12. If you have very dry or thick cuticles, don’t be tempted to cut them as they will only grow back thicker. Rub oil into them daily or massage hot oil onto them before going to bed once or twice a week to soften them.
13. Always wear gloves when doing any housework, gardening or when your nails are exposed to detergents. Use hand cream and cuticle oil religiously to keep them hydrated, strong and flexible.
14. Lastly, just be kind to your nails; they are jewels, not tools!
Check out brand new website, SkinKandy.ie, where you’ll find all you need – as well as a new online store featuring facial wonder-brand, Jan Marini – and more.