How to Prepare and Paint your Nails

How to prepare and paint your nails

1. Cuticle Tidy Up

I think that this is one of the most important steps when preparing your nails as it makes your overall manicure look better if you have tidied up around your cuticles. I would usually push them back first with a nail tool or an orange stick and then carefully take off any untidy looking bits with a cuticle nipper like the one shown below. Just be careful that you don't damage the nail bed with this though, don't dig it into your nail and always clip away from the nail, not inwards towards your body.

How to prepare and paint your nails

2. File File File!

Secondly, your mani will look so much better if you put time into shaping your nails! The one thing to remember here is to not run the nail file back and forth over the nail, but rather file in one direction only. This will hopefully prevent your nails from splitting. 

You can choose to square off your nails or make them rounded but my preferred nail shape is the 'squoval' Oh yes, a square with rounded edges! I actually think that this shape   makes your nails look longer

How to prepare and paint your nails

3. Buff It Out

The rough edges I mean... Sometimes nails can get a little ridgy, a smooth nail plate definitely improves the look of your manicure. This isn't a harsh buffer block at all and it cost pennys from eBay. That's where I purchase all my nail bits and pieces and its even cheaper again to buy the products in bulk.

Buff very lightly and be careful as to not touch the nail bed. I've done this one too many times, not realised and ended up with a bleeding finger. Oops.

How to prepare and paint your nails

4. Apply a strengthening base coat

This could be somewhat predictable but I just love OPI Nail Envy. It's pricey at £18 but I found that it helped the condition of my nails so much. There is a big 'but' however, this is one of those products that you need to use regular otherwise it won't work. My nails are so soft and they would never grow to this length without this product so I have 'trained' myself to use it before I apply polish!

If you are not a lover of OPI then the Sally Hansen 'Hard As Nails' is also a good shout. At just £4.75 you can try it out without it breaking the bank.

How to prepare and paint your nails

5. Apply your favourite polish!

Make sure that your base coat has dried thoroughly before applying your colour. Then get your colour and apply three thin coats, letting each one dry properly before applying the next. Also, paint one swipe down the right side of the nail, then another down the left side of the nail and finish by painting one last swipe down the middle. This will ensure no lines and keep your mani as smooth as possible!

Once you have applied your colour, apply a fab top coat like the OPI Rapidry or Sally Hansen Mega Shine. I personally love them both and would repurchase both so don't feel like you have to spend wild money on a really expensive top coat! In saying that, if I was to splash out on any product it would be on a good quality top coat is this is the layer that actually protects your nails from chipping. We want to get a week or more out of our manis for all our hard work!

Now this is one that we are ALL guilty of! Who has applied their nail colour in a rush and then ruined it as you scramble to get dressed, make dinner or drive? Me too, and it is so disheartening! haha. Take a night when you know you don't have to do anything and take your time to do your nails properly. This way they will last longer as you have given each coat time to dry thoroughly. 

How to prepare and paint your nails

The Fashion Six 
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  1. Love this post - I'm always so lazy when it comes to painting my nails and end up rushing them and then they only last a day or so! Will have to follow this guide next time :)

    Beth /

  2. To be honest, I'm lazy too Beth! I never give my nails enough time to dry and then they get all chipped. Ugh I hate that! x

  3. this was very helpful considering i'm not the best at keeping my nails in shape! xx

    | Heyitshannaah">Hannah | Heyitshannaah

  4. This post was very helpful! My nails have been so bad since having acrylics on every other month last year. I have been on nail-therapy ever since! Thanks for sharing


  5. My nails have been terrible lately. I bought a strengthening base coat from Essie but it's not helping much. I might try this one from OPI. xx

    Renata | Speaking Beauty UK

  6. Perfect nails :)

  7. Randomly found your blog and can’t express how I like it!
    It was so interesting to read your posts and also I’d like to say that you have beautiful photos!

    I’ll be happy to see you in my blog!)

    Diana Cloudlet

  8. Awh what a nice thing to say Diana! Thank you so much <3

  9. Me neither Hannah! I can be very lazy when it comes to looking after my nails. Woopsies

  10. Ohh Shanna I feel your pain. Acrylics are so hard on your own nails! x

  11. The OPI Nail Envy is a winner in my books Renata :) xox


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