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How To Paint Your Nails

Posted by Rachael Phillips on 23rd Apr 2014

I don’t know about you but when it comes to having my nails done I prefer to pick up the phone and head to my nearest beauty salon. I always get that one hand perfect but then the other hand looks as though someone has gone crazy with the crayons - you know what I mean right?

But I’ve been perfecting my technique by following some simple rules which I’d like to share with you today…

1. If you’ve never painted your nails before then know this…it takes practice. Tons of it. So get ready to have different colour nails, every day until you get it spot on.

2. Use a basecoat. I can’t tell you the amount of times that I’ve decided to paint my nails a very fetching shade of red or blue only to find that my nails are stained that colour when it comes to removal. A base coat stops that staining and gives the colour something to hold on too. So you end up with smooth, strong nails.

3. Wrap the tips. This is another use for a basecoat, using a strengthener paint the underside of your nail. This is where the colour tends to wear off first AND it’ll stop your nails from breaking.

4. Don’t go thick. The key to great nails is to layer. So don’t use huge blobs of polish, instead paint thin layers and build it up until it’s a nice, strong colour.

The only exception to this is if you’re using an opaque colour since that won’t really notice.

5. Try to get the polish on with three strokes of the brush. You don’t want to risk gloopy streaks so for your first coat make sure that you follow the simple three stroke rule. Start in the centre (I know, I always went from left to right but this seriously works) and then brush either side. 3 goes and your first coat is done.

6. Expect to get nail polish - everywhere. If you get nail varnish on the skin then using a cotton bud which has been dipped in nail varnish remover just tidy it up. Don’t use the same cotton bud for more than one nail either because you’ll end up with an even bigger mess.

7. Let each coat dry properly. You don’t want to go down the route of painting over wet polish. Make sure that each coat is touch dry before you apply the next. It’ll look neater and you’ll be glad that you extended a bit of patience when you don’t have to redo your entire nail again.

Then you are done. If you want to then you can add a quick layer of topcoat to your nails which will hide any mistakes and also extend the life of your polish but it’s not essential. Also don’t beat yourself up if you don’t get it right, it takes a while and plenty of practice to achieve the perfect self manicure.

And one final tip - don’t try to rush it. I use painting my nails as an excuse to grab a bit of me time, a nice bath, a glass of wine followed by the therapeutic act of paining my nails means that I get to escape the world for a while and come out looking fabulous.

Do you have any nail tips you want to share? If so leave a comment below or tweet us

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