I love getting my nails done at the salon, a little pampering session is always welcome, but not always the most practical. I don’t often have child-free time in the day, and the cost of getting my nails done regularly sure builds up. But, that’s not going to stop me from having beautiful manicured nails.
After some trial and error, I’ve figured out some of the best nail hacks and tips for achieving a salon-quality polish and I’m sharing them with you here! Say goodbye to smudges and uneven coats—these top hacks will transform your nails!
1. Start with Clean Nails
The number one rule for all beauty is to start with a clean slate. Ensure your nails are clean and free of old polish or oils. Use a non-acetone nail polish remover to clean your nails thoroughly to achieve a smooth manicure.
2. Shape and Trim Your Nails
File your nails into your desired shape and trim them if needed. This creates a neat canvas for the polish.
3. Use a Base Coat
Apply a thin layer of base coat to protect your nails from the polish and give the polish a smooth application. This also helps prevent staining.
4. Invest in Quality Polish
Higher-quality nail polish tends to have better pigmentation and a smoother application. Investing in good quality polish can make a significant difference in the overall look and longevity of your manicure.
5. Avoid Shaking the Bottle
It may be tempting to shake the nail polish, after all so many nail artists do it. However, shaking the bottle creates air bubbles that lead to an uneven application. Roll the nail polish bottle between your palms instead of shaking it.
6. Apply Thin Layers
Instead of one thick coat, apply multiple thin layers of polish. This helps in achieving a smoother and more even finish. Allow each layer to dry completely before applying the next one. This can be a little time-consuming, but trust me, it’s worth the extra effort!
7. Use the Three-Stroke Technique
For each nail, use three strokes – one in the center and two on either side. This helps distribute the polish evenly.
8. Clean Up the Edges
Dip a small brush or a cotton swab in nail polish remover and use it to clean up any mistakes or polish that has gone outside the nail edges. A clean look is imperative for getting a professional-looking finish.
9. Cap the Edges
Paint the tips of your nails by capping the edges. This helps to prevent chipping and enhances the longevity of your manicure.
10. Seal with a Top Coat
Finish with a high-quality top coat to add shine and protect your polish. This also helps prevent chipping and extends the life of your manicure.
11. Avoid Heat and Humidity
Hot and humid conditions cause nail polish to dry unevenly. Try to apply polish in a cool, dry area to ensure a smooth, even finish.
12. Quick-Dry Drops or Spray
Nails can take up to half an hour to fully dry, investing in quick-dry drops or sprays is a great hack for speeding up the drying process. This helps prevent smudges and allows you to not spend too much time on your nails!
13. Moisturize Cuticles
Apply cuticle oil or moisturizer around your nails after your polish has dried. This keeps your cuticles healthy and adds a professional salon-like finish.
14. Maintain Your Tools
Clean your nail polish brushes and tools regularly. This ensures that you get a smooth application every time, and old polish residue won’t interfere with your new manicure.
15. Practice Regularly
Like any skill, practice makes perfect! The more you paint your nails, the better you’ll become at it. With enough practice, you’ll be just as good as your nail artist!
These hacks have changed my nail polish game drastically! My nails look professionally done, but, it took time to get the hang of it. Be patient with yourself and soon you’ll be your own nail artist!
Hi, I’m Hollie, and I’m passionate about everything beauty. Over the last decade and a half, I’ve tested thousands of products to bring you the best of the best! I also love bringing you fun and creative beauty looks. Learn more.
Beauty profile – 35, dry, aging skin, focused on aging well with a healthy glow and natural makeup look ✨
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