Every girl hates the moment when her perfectly manicured nails start to chip. It’s even worse when there is somewhere to go or someone to impress, and there isn’t a free block of time to schedule in an unanticipated manicure. Luckily, there are great tools and tips that can help you give yourself a quick touch-up at any second!
The first thing to do is make sure you thoroughly take off your old, peeling nail polish. It’s best to use a nail polish remover like CVS’s Biodegradable Formula Remover. It’s a great alternative because it contains aloe which naturally moisturizers your nails and it’s also environmentally friendly; double bonus! Make sure to soak your hands in warm water right after taking off the polish. This helps nourish skin and makes the cuticles softer and easier to maintain. If you’re going to cut your cuticles, make sure to purchase a tool specifically designed for that task. Revlon has a Control Grip Cuticle Nipper, which is designed to be super-accurate and has removable anti-slip grips to ensure control.
What most of us don’t think to do is moisturize our nails and cuticles right after. Nail polish removers easily dry out our nails, especially if they were just under layers of polish and the winter makes us more prone to dry skin and cuticles. My favorite lotion is L’Occitane’s Shea Butter Hand Cream. It’s pocket sized, so it’s perfect to carry wherever you go and is such a popular item that one is sold every 5 seconds around the U.S.! The cream is a combination of shea butter, honey, and sweet almond extract, and is also infused with scents of jasmine. It also contains an anti-oxidizing Vitamin E ingredient to nourish your skin.
After moisturizing, either cut or file down your nails to the length and shape that you want. If you don’t want to seriously cut them down, use an emery board so that you can shape the nails without doing anything too severe to their shape. Tweezerman creates great emery boards with really cute patterns, plus, their Zip File has dual functionality as it is designed perfectly for on-the-go touch ups!
Buffing our nails is something we associate with the luxury of someone else doing our nails. However, brands like TRIM make cheap buffing boards for just under $4. Each side of the buffing block is labeled according to each of its purposes, so it’s as easy and simple as coloring-by-numbers. Buffing the nails is extremely important to create a smooth, shiny surface. This way, any nail breakage from filing the nails won’t ruin the flow of the polish and it will glide on easily without being uneven. Even if you don’t like to always paint your nails, the shine created by using a buffer board makes your nails look amazing!
It’s important to put on a base coat to help your manicure last longer. Sephora by O.P.I.has a great 3-in-1 product, which has not only a base coat, but a top coat, and nail strengthener! It’s perfect for girls on-the-go because you can throw it in your purse and have all three on hand!
After painting on the first coat of the polish of your choice, make sure you let it dry for a sufficient amount of time so that the layers don’t get clumpy and thick. If you do the coats without enough drying time, it will end up taking longer to dry and will be more likely to smudge. Either let your hands air-dry or even better you can invest in a small, individual hand dryer to help speed along the process! PBTeen sells great ones online for only $25. They come in cute colors and even have a small unit on either side of the dryer, which is perfect to store or organize your manicuring tools.
After you let them dry, add a layer of your 3-in-1 Sephora by O.P.I. top coat to create a shine and help protect the nails from chipping. If you’re in a serious rush, you can use another of their products: the Nail ColourQuick Dry Spray. Spray it on 45 seconds after your last coat and top coat for a glossy and smudge-resistant manicure. Voila! You could open up your own salon!