Perfect Pampered Mani

The Step-By-Step Manicure

Via Illustration by Candace Napier

Need some tips to make your tips look salon fresh, but at home? Skip the salon!


The practicality of DIY manicures have never been more sensible; given that so many products are available to the everyday beauty-enthusiast, and they’re a money saver! Treat your hands with the tenderness they deserve after a long, tiresome week- it may be the pampering pick-me-up you’ve been longing for!



What you’ll need:


  • Nail Clipper
  • Nail File
  • Cuticle Oil
  • A Bowl of Warm Water
  • Cuticle Tool
  • Nail Buffer
  • Moisturizing Hand Cream
  • Base Coat, Nail Polish, Top Coat



Step 1: Trim Your Nails

If your nails need  a trim, grab that nail clipper and cut them to your desired length.

    • Shorter nails are more manageable for those who type, cook, and do a lot of “hands on” activities.
    • For those who can maintain longer nails, you can skip trimming and file instead.

Step 2: File & Shape

Once your nails are trimmed, edge them out by filing with a natural nail file, and shape them. Be sure to consider what shape (Oval, Almond, or Square) flatters your hands best to make hands look more feminine.

Step 3: Nourish with Cuticle Oil

Time to revive those soft, healthy tips. Take your favorite cuticle oil (oils can be found in any beauty store or drug store where you would find nail polish etc.) and apply from the nail fold, to the edges of your cuticle and tip of the nail. Apply to all of your fingers.

Step 4: Soak

To retain moisture, soak your hands in warm water for  about two minutes. For maximum moisture, add a pump of moisturizing soap to the water.

Step 5: Push Back Cuticles

To help prevent hangnails and to create a cleaner canvas when we are applying nail polish, use a cuticle tool to your cuticle back. However, be sure to not apply too much force. If needed, clip away any dead skin with a cuticle nipper. Always use caution when clipping to prevent cutting yourself.

Step 6: Buff For Shine

Using a nail buffer, gently swipe against your nails to add a natural, healthy shine and to enhance smoothness.

Step 7: Moisturize & Massage

Using your favorite hand cream, apply an appropriate amount to your hands and nails, and massage in liberally. This relaxing treatment is nourishing to your hands and nails. For extra pampering, wrap your hands with a hot towel after massaging (heat for about 30 seconds in the microwave).

Step 8: Apply Polish

If you wish to apply polish, use a cotton ball soaked in nail polish remover to remove the cream from your nails. This is to ensure we have a clean canvas to apply our base coat. Apply one layer of base coat, two layers of polish, and one layer of top coat (of course only apply top coat once the polish is completely dry to avoid streaking).

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