Sunday, April 30, 2017

Nail Care Routine

Hi readers! I tend to do a lot of nail of the day posts, but today I thought I would share the nail care routine behind the nails. Since I change my polish frequently I have to put a lot of effort into caring for my nails and cuticles so they don't become dry, brittle or peely.

The first tool in my nail arsenal I always bring out is my silicone mat to protect the table from drips and spills.
1) This cool mat from Uberchic has multiple applications. Not only is it protective but it has many fun uses for nail art. This is the current version of the Uber Mat available with updated features.

2) Cotton balls: Self explanatory: you soak them with acetone to remove any old polish or dirt from your nails. I store mine in a repurposed candle tin.

3) Polish remover: also pretty obvious. I like this .96¢ Equate brand from Walmart. It works just as well as pricier brands for me.

4) Sugar Scrub: after cleaning nails with remover I like to wash my hands with a sugar scrub to get rid of that nasty acetone residue/odor, moisturize the skin, and scrub off any rogue glitter particles.

5) These nail polish bottle holders are invaluable! I can't tell you how many bottles I had previously knocked over and what a nightmare it was. These work quite well to keep bottles steady and fit most bottle shapes. I bought mine for 2 for $1 from

6) Base Coat: I actually meant for this to be #7 but got a little ahead of myself. After, oiling the nails which I will discuss below, it is essential to my nail care routine to apply a strengthening base coat yo help keep nails strong and healthy provide a good base for the rest of your polish.

7) After washing my hands I do what is probably the most important step for caring for my nails and cuticles which is to apply oil. This may seem a little odd, but this is a proven method to re-hydrate dry, peeling nails and the oil absorbs into the nail and prevents water from getting in between the layers of nail and weakening the nail. It also leaves cuticles soft and moisturized. You can use almost any type of skin safe oil, including coconut or olive oil in a pinch. I like to used this Beauty Secrets brand from Sally Beauty with a convenient brush applicator. Just brush or dad oil onto each nail are, massage it into the nail beds, wipe of the excess oil with a paper towel and then apply your base coat as normal to seal in the hydration.

8-10) Nail clippers, orangewood stick, and glass nail file. Also pretty self explanatory. Use clippers and file sparingly to help shape nails and keep them smooth and snag/chip free. The orangewood stick is great for pushing back overgrown cuticles and also cleaning up excess polish around the edges of the nails. Many people also use a tiny makeup brush dipped in removwr for cleanup, but I find that too fussy. Plus the more you practice painting, the better you'll get at coloring inside the lines and the less cleanup you'll need. Clippers and orangewood sticks can be found at any drug store or beauty supply. I recommend a glass nail file because it keeps nails smoother and minimizes damage from filing. I ordered this OPI brand file from Skyline Beauty Supply.

11) Cuticle nippers: another important tool for getting rid of those annoying hangnails (little bits of excess skin that stick out from the cuticle and snag on everything.) I also use it to trim peeling sections on my nails so they don get worse. Make sure you use these carefully; it's easy to trim to close and cut yourself. These are Sally Hansen brand, found at big box/drug stores.

12) Hand Cream: after I've completely finished painting my nails and they are dry, I wash and dry my hands again and then apply a thick and luxurious hand cream that smells good and hydrates the skin. I like the formula of the nourishing shea butter hand creams from Bath & Body Works.

13) We musn't forget another huge essential: quick drying top coat! You want to use a quick dry formula so you don't end up ruining all your nail handywork. After applying polish but before the hand cream, apply your top coat. I like Seche Vive available at Sally Beauty. It's dry within a couple of minutes and hardens to a strong, shiny gloss.

Well, there you have it! My many nail care products. Seems like a lot of work? It kind of is, but to me it's relaxing and so worth the end results. You have to really enjoy nail care and have a good bit of patience, but if you wish to have well groomed nails, this id definitely the route to go. If I'm doing a couple coats of a single polish, my routine usually takes melting about an hour from start to finish. If I'm doing any type of nail art, it can take upwards of 2 hours.

Do you have a regular nail care routine or any favorite nail products? Are you interested in starting or adding to your nail care routine? Let me know in the comments below!

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