Need-to-know nail tips for a perfect manicure

Well-manicured nails can make you look polished in a matter of minutes. But if you find your nail colour doesn’t last as long as it does when you have it applied by a pro, then follow these tips. You’ll have a perfect manicure each and every time.

Prep your nails with nail polish remover

Even if you don’t have a coat of nail polish that you need to remove, you should still give your nails a wipe down with a cotton pad soaked in nail polish remover. It will help remove oils from your nails, which can affect the wear of your mani.

Roll your nail polish bottle

If your nail polish is running low or isn’t mixed together properly, don’t shake the bottle – this will cause air bubbles to form. Instead, roll it between your palms to warm up the bottle and stir the formula together.

A base coat protects your nails

A base coat is a crucial step for helping your nail polish last longer. It provides a smooth surface for an even application and also prevents your nail colour from staining your nails.

Apply your nail polish in three strokes

For a flawless manicure, don’t try to apply your nail polish in one thick stroke. Instead, place a drop of nail polish in the bottom centre of your nail. Wipe away any excess polish from your brush and first push the dot of polish down towards the cuticle (but leave a small gap), then take your brush up towards the tip. Do the same to the left and right side of each nail. Once dry, apply a second coat using the same technique.

Soak your nails to make them dry faster

To help speed up the nail-drying process, dip your just-painted nails in a bowl of ice water and leave them in there for a few minutes. It will help the colour to set and will prevent you from smudging them.

The right way to apply a top coat

A top coat can give your nails a gorgeous shiny finish, as well as protect your manicure from chipping. To correctly apply your top coat, apply a thin layer over the entire nail, then sweep your brush under the tip of your nail as well. This will seal in the edges.

Wrap your nails in foil to remove stubborn polish

If your nail polish is proving tricky to remove, soak a cotton pad in nail polish remover and place them around your nails. Secure them in place with foil and leave them for five minutes. Press the cotton pad gently against the nail while you slide the foil off to remove any last traces.

Treat yourself to a manicure every now and again

While a DIY manicure is a great way to pamper yourself during a night in, splurge for a manicure every month or so. Trimming and tidying up your nails will help them grow healthy and strong.