Manicures are the perfect self-care treatment. Our hands do so much for us – from washing the dishes to crafting and working. It’s time we do something for our hands.
Of course, going to a salon and getting a manicure done for you is lovely and relaxing. But it can cost a lot. Plus, a stranger touching your hands for so long can get weird for the socially awkward types.
Thankfully, manicures are easy to do at home. DIY manicures give me the time and space to focus on myself, my body, and feeling good. Kind of like mindfulness, right?
So, prepare your manicure tools, put on your favorite podcast or some music, relax, and give yourself the tender, loving care you deserve. Taking time with your manicure is essential, so give yourself a few hours for the process.
Things You Need for a Proper DIY Manicure
Here are the basic things you need to do for your manicure at home:
- Nail clippers
- A cuticle pusher
- A nail buffer
- A nail file
- Nail polish remover
- Nail polish (either regular polish or gel polish)
Manicure Procedure for the Flawless Nails
The seven-step manicure procedure is a comprehensive approach to achieving perfectly groomed and polished nails. From nail preparation to finishing touches, each step is meticulously designed to deliver a flawless and long-lasting manicure.
Think about the colors and final nail design before starting. The choice of nail color holds more significance than just aesthetics. The nail color can express your personality, mood or even complement a particular outfit.
Once you made up your mind, let’s begin.
Step 1: Remove the Nail Polish
Firstly, take your time removing any polish you have on your nails. You must use an acetone nail polish remover if you have gel polish on. Thankfully, loads of great beauty brands sell polish remover designed for gels.
Opt for a nail polish remover without acetone if you have regular nail polish. They are much gentler on the skin.
Step 2: Exfoliate and Soak
Now is when the relaxation begins! Use an exfoliator on your hands and wrists to remove any dead skin. Then, wash and dry your hands thoroughly.
Once exfoliated, place your hands in a bowl of warm water. Add soap or cleanser to the water to soften your hands and loosen your cuticles. The warm water will make shaping and trimming the cuticles easier. Plus, it feels so lovely! Leave your hands in the water for three or four minutes, then remove and dry.
Step 3: Push Back Your Cuticles
Once your nails are dry, take your time to push back your cuticles and get rid of any dead skin with your clippers. Be gentle while removing dead skin, as you don’t want to hurt yourself accidentally.
If you find it hard to push back your cuticles, you may benefit from using cuticle oil. Cuticle oil keeps your cuticles soft and healthy, which helps if you are doing your manicures at home. I apply my cuticle oil every few days or so as part of my self care routine.
Step 4: Buff and Shape Your Nails
Use a file to shape your nail in the style you wish. Be gentle when using a soft nail file to avoid snapping or damaging your nails.
Then, take your nail buffer and buff the tops and sides of your nails. Doing this removes any oils or dirt from your nails, making them look and feel amazing.
Step 5: Prep for Nail Polish
Your nails feel healthy and fresh, and it is time to apply your favorite polish. But before you do, make sure your nails are prepped. Take nail cleanser or remover to each nail and wipe them down. It will make the polish stick to your nails and last longer.
Step 6: Apply Your Nail Polish
If using regular nail polish, carefully apply a layer to each nail. Then, wait for them to dry completely before applying another coat.
Are you using gel polish? Apply a base coat first to prevent chipping and protect your natural nails. Once that is cured, apply a coat of your gel polish. Use thin layers of gel polish to create a sleek finish. I usually do two or three layers of gel color for my manicures, depending on the color of the polish.
When you are happy with your gel color, apply a top coat and cure.
Step 7: Moisturize
Finally, take your moisturizer and apply it to your hands and nails. Take your time rubbing in the moisturizer, giving yourself a little hand massage as you do so. If you have cuticle oil, apply it to your cuticles to keep them healthy.
How To Make Your Manicures Last Longer
Manicure aftercare is essential if you want the excellent results to last longer. It would be best if you cared for your nails and hands daily. Here are some simple tips that will help keep your manicure fresher and keep your hands and nails healthy and strong:
- Put on rubber gloves when washing up or cleaning your house;
- Dry the hands and put moisturizing lotion each time you wash your hands with a bar of soap;
- Put a hand cream into your bag, into the car, and have one in your office to make sure you don’t forget to apply it regularly;
- Always put on rubber gloves when gardening;
- Massage your hands and nails regularly – ideally, do it every evening before nighttime;
- Use cuticle oil multiple times a day;
- Do not damage your nails;
- Use acetone-free and non-aggressive nail polish remover;
- Use a strengthening or nourishing base coat;
- Always wear gloves during low temperatures and in winter;
- Watch your diet and make sure it has enough vitamins A and E.
Are Manicures Necessary, After All?
Women have long cherished manicures to enhance their nails’ appearance.
But nowadays, there’s a growing movement embracing the concept of naked or nude nails. Nude nails mean embracing our natural nail state, unadorned by polish, extensions, or elaborate designs.
No-manicure means simplicity, self-acceptance, and care for our nails in their purest form.
While it all may sound true, there is one important aspect: the manicure is not just an aesthetic procedure, as people often consider.
Our nails and hands go through a lot during the day. The hands’ skin is getting tough and rough, requiring more intensive rejuvenation than other more delicate areas like our face or neck.
Regular hand care procedures like manicures help us effectively eliminate dead cells. Hand massage improves blood circulation and helps nourish and moisturize the skin. Regular care encourages the growth of new cells, which is essential for skin health.
After all, the manicure is quite meditative and relaxing. A DIY manicure is an excellent opportunity to devote time to yourself and relax your mind. Remember to include a hand massage in your regular hand care ritual. If you choose to apply nail polish in the end, do not forget to make yourself a cup of coffee and enjoy some time of quietness and comfort.
Ultimately, it’s not just black and white. You can opt for various natural nail designs before turning to naked nails. Whether we opt for manicures or embrace the charm of nude nails, the choice lies in our preferences.
What Do You Soak Your Hands in for a Manicure?
Soak your hands in warm water for three or four minutes for your manicure. Put cleanser or soap in the water to enhance the effect of the soak and keep your hands healthy.
How Often Should You Get a Manicure?
We recommend doing a DIY manicure every two or three weeks to keep your nails healthy and strong.
What Is the Healthiest Manicure for Your Nails?
A natural manicure without gel polish is the healthiest for your nails. However, you can keep your nails healthy even if you get gel manicures by using moisturizer and cuticle oil and taking breaks in between gel manicures.
Can Manicures Damage Nails?
No, manicures will not damage your nails when done correctly.
What Manicure Lasts the Longest?
Gel and acrylic manicures last the longest as they are strong manicures that will rarely chip or break. Most gel and acrylic manicures last two to three weeks.
Will Manicures Help Nails Grow?
Yes, manicures can help your nails grow as they keep them strong and healthy. It means they will not chip or break. Plus, gel nail polish gives your nails strength and protection that helps them grow.
Give Yourself Some Care With a DIY Manicure
Doing your manicure at home is the perfect treat if you have a busy schedule and hectic life. It’s like bringing a nail salon into your home! You give yourself space to breathe, regroup, and relax.
By following the steps above, you will avoid the salon visit, save money, and give yourself some quality time that we all need.
This article originally appeared on Wealth of Geeks.