Ever wondered how to get a professional looking manicure or pedicure at home? If yes, then this article is all you need to make it happen. Here you will find nail polish hacks, tips, and advice on how to get salon results at home that last.
Nail Polish Application Tips and Tricks-How to Paint your Nails like a Pro
Nail Polish, unfortunately, needs practice to get the best results as it’s easy to leave it looking smudged, chipped off, streaky, or not opaque enough–which isn’t exactly what we want. The formula as well as application and technique you’ll use will give you the best results. Some professional manicure and pedicure tips as well as nail polish life hacks l include:
- Rub your nails with alcohol or any other astringent prior your paint your nails to get rid of moisture and oils that could affect nail polish application.
- Apply a small amount of vaseline over the skin just around your nails so you can easily wipe off any excess nail polish off. Another stronger variation of this is to apply with a q-tip some non toxic or Elmer’s glue around your nails and then you can scrub it off with a wooden stick. However, this isn’t indicated if you have dry cuticles or very sensitive skin.
- A trick some professionals do to make a color pop more and look more opaque without having to apply multiple layers is to paint your nails first with a white nail polish. If you apply your regular color on top, it will look brighter and more opaque instead of transparent.
- If your nail polish has started to get gloopy and hard to spread, you can add a few drops of acetone free remover or special nail polish thinner to make it more easy to spread. However, you should only do this one or two times max when you must use a nail polish as too much thinner or nail polish remover will damage the formula of the nail polish.
- Just before nail polish application, a thing that almost all nail professionals do is to push back the cuticles with a wooden or metallic stick so that excess skin is pulled back and it’s easier to spread the nail polish. This will also minimize the nail polish from sitting on top of the cuticles.
Nail Polish Remover Hacks
Nail polish removers are typically divided into acetone and acetone-free. Acetone based ones are stronger but more toxic whereas acetone-free ones need extra tension but are less toxic to to the nails and general health.
Some great nail polish remover DIY hacks to make the process of removing nail polish easier, include:
- Wrapping your nails in cotton pads dipped in nail polish remover and then wrapping your nail tips and cotton pads with aluminum foil for a couple of minutes. This will help remove the nail polish easier without much tension and also works well in hybrid gel/nail polishes like Shellac or Bio Sculpture.
- Another great nail polish removal hack that is similar to that being used in professional salons, is to take a clear or plastic mason jar and container (must be high enough to cover the length of your fingertips) and soak a sponge into a generous amount of nail polish remover). If you soak them for 3-5 minutes, and then wipe your nails with sponge, the nail polish will come off.
- If you find the removal of metallic nail polish tips or designs a real struggle, a great hack not many people know (even professionals) is to take some random tape bist to cover the metallic nail polish design and then take them off. The stickiness of the tape will help remove any metallic and glitter tips much easier.
- In case you are using nail stickers or whole nail decals and sticker wraps which don’t seem to glide off, a good tip to remove them is to dip them in water and then use a floss picker to slide them off.
Nail Polish Drying Hacks
Nail polish application can be tricky but nail drying process and time can become a tricky as well. To make your nail polish dry up faster in 2 minutes or less here are some tips:
- Soak them in ice cold water or let cold water run through your newly painted nails for a few seconds. Alternatively, if your hands are not too sensitive, you can place your finger tips in the freezer for 20 seconds. The freezing air will lock in the nail polish and make it dry faster.
- A very popular trick that many use, is to use a hair dryer in cold air mode for half a minute or more, till the nail polish dries out completely. If you can invest in a professional nail drying fan, even better.
- Although this trick is controversial and professionals don’t use it or recommend it, some people claim that spraying their nails with cooking spray after they have painted them, helps the nail polish dry up faster. However, this may alter the finish and texture of the nail polish and make your nails look like a greasy mess if you spray too much.
DIY Nail Polish Hacks
Making your own nail polish isn’t rocket science but you need to consider a few basic steps to make both shade mixing and application successful. Here they are:
- You’ll need a clear nail polish and an eyeshadow in loose powder/pigment in your desired shade to make your own custom shade of nail polish. You ideally want to mix 1 part of clear nail polish, and half a part of eyeshadow powder. Shake well in a clear nail polish bottle or mini container and apply just like regular nail polish (note: a DIY nail polish usually looks pearly and semi-opaque which means that you’ll probably need 2-3 strokes to make it more opaque).
Nail Polish Tips -Nail Art
Nail polish tips, which is the most common type of nail art may look easy as a piece of cake but they do need a bit of practice to look perfect. Here are some tips to make them look professional and even:
- Use nail sticker tips/dividers on each nail, after your nail polish has completely dried. Place them just a few lines under the tip of your nails on the top for a french manicure (or bottom third of your nails for a crescent moon look). Paint your tip color just above the sticker and then peel off to reveal a perfect looking tip shape.
- If you don’t have a dotting tool for making nail art dots and similar shapes, you can alternatively use a toothpick and place its tip on the nail polish color you’ll use to add decorations on top of your base color. You can also use a toothpick to pick and apply rhinestones and glitter, after you have applied a clear nail polish or glue to certain parts of your nails.
- If your glittery nail polish doesn’t apply evenly easily, a great tip that will save you time and effort is to use a triangle or flat makeup sponge and then drip your glitter nail polish on top. This will absorb excess clear nail polish so the glitter applies more evenly to the clear or base colored nail. A makeup sponge can also be used to mix two separate colors and apply them to the nail for an ombre effect.