Just like a recipe needs prep time to make it perfect, to get a great mani-pedi at home, we must begin by prepping the nails. Pick a good quality nail polish remover and take off the existing polish. Even if you don’t have a nail colour on, using a polish remover takes the oils and dirt off the nails.
Clip, file and buff your nails to the shape you desire. Go for the classic oval or round shape or go bold with square or almond-shaped nails. File gently in one direction. If you have thin nails, tilt the filer slightly so that you file from underneath. Next, use a nail buffer to create a smooth surface. Buffing your nails is good as it’s brightening, making nails look more youthful.
Use cuticle oil or balm to soften the cuticles first. Fret not if you don’t have those, for coconut or olive oil work just fine. Then, with the help of a cuticle remover, take off the dead skin around the nail beds. After that, use a cuticle stick to gently push back the cuticles. This will clean the nail bed of the accumulated bacteria.
Grab your favourite body scrub and exfoliate the hands, arms, wrists, legs, soles and feet. This eliminates the dead skin and cleanses the skin excellently. In case you are experiencing cracking of foot skin, try these home remedies for cracked heels.
Fill up a bowl with warm soapy water and soak your hands and feet. This helps you relax and get rid of all the dirt and grime. The warm water acts like a gentle, stimulating massage and promotes blood circulation enabling faster nail growth as well. So, sit back and soak in!
Moisturising before you apply the nail polish will ensure a smudge-free appearance. A regular moisturiser works just fine. But if you own hand cream, foot cream and cuticle cream, do use those. Swipe off the moisturiser from the nails with polish remover.
Applying a base coat of polish helps hydrate as well as prevents chipping. Experts state that we should wait for at least two minutes between each coat of polish. A base coat locks the colour and keeps it from staining your nails. But feel free to skip this step if you don’t have one of these.
Apply the first coat of nail polish, making sure to go all the way down to the tip of the nail. Keep the layer thin and cover the corners as well. For toes, use toe separators or spacers (if you have them) to avoid smudging.
Once the first coat is completely dry, it’s time to apply the second coat. For pastels or sheer colours, you may need a third coat. Just like the first coat, apply a thin second coat, covering the entire nail. If you are doing nail art, this is the time to flaunt your creativity.
A top coat of clear polish adds shine to your nails and keeps the colour from chipping away. It makes the polish last a long time. Remember to wait until the last coat is completely dry before applying the topcoat. Make sure it is applied smoothly as it can cause a wrinkled effect when it dries.