There was a time when there was just one option for a manicure. That was….a manicure! Now we have lots of options. Gel, wraps, shellac, silk, etc. The upshot of these choices is that we can now get manicures that last much longer than the 3-5 days of the past. If you want the benefit of length, though, your options are more limited. This requires that tips be applied to your nails, followed by an acrylic overly. The result is glamorous but the upkeep requires that you revisit the salon every two weeks. Here’s how to make them last longer, and your money go further!
- Non-acetone nail polish
- Nail polish
- Top coat
- High grit grinding nail file
- Fine grit finishing nail file
- Rough grit nail buffer
- Fine grit finishing nail buffer
- Cuticle pusher
- Nail brush
- Remove old polish from your acrylic nails. It is imperative that you use a non-acetone nail polish remover because acetone dissolves acrylic and your nails will deteriorate.
- Wash hands thoroughly, and use the nail brush to deep clean them underneath, between the nail and edge of the nail bed. (Bacteria builds up here.)
- Use the rough grit file to file down your nails to the desired length. You might be strongly tempted to cut them using clipper, but don’t. The acrylic can’t typically take the force of the clipper and you’ll crack or break your nail.
- Next, your goal is to buff down the bump where you would usually have a nail technician do a “fill” or “rebase.” You obviously won’t be able to achieve quite the same effect, but if you buff thoroughly the bump will be substantially reduced. Once you polish the nail the bump will be hard to detect.
- Soak your fingers in water a few minutes and then push back the cuticles. (Trim if necessary.)
- Use the fine grit buffer to smooth the surface of the nail so that it can be polished.
- Use the fine grit nail file to shape and smooth the nail tips.
- Wash hands again, and use nail brush to clean dust and debris from tops and under nails. Don’t put on any hand lotion yet.
- Apply a base clear coat to the nails and let dry.
- Apply two coats of nail polish color, and let dry partially. Although it’s more expensive, we advise considering nail lacquer instead of polish. It hardens to a stronger finish. It lasts longer and it will help keep your nails strong and crack free until you can return to the nail salon.
- Apply a clear top coat.
- Let dry for at least 20 minutes.
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