nails 101 //

nails 101



 Revlon Colorstay Gel Base Coat  //  Essie Butler Please Nail Polish // Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat

It's no secret that I love nail polish and a fresh manicure. I get easily bored with my polish and usually end up changing my color 2x week.  I thought it would be a fun post to share my favorite products to use weekly and the success to perfect lasting nails. I also want to say this is what works for me and my lifestyle (hands in water a lot, gym, moving boxes at work, etc...).

Prep

 I use Zoya Remove Plus Nail Polish Remover to remove old polish and to prep my nails.  I think this is the best remover, it is gentle on my nails and I can remove even the darkest of  nail polishes with 2 cotton balls (one for each hand). I also love the twist top on this bottle, no more spills...genius! Apply a cuticle cream or treatment the night before if you can.  I  love this Creme Apricot Fortifying Cream by Christian Dior  , the tiniest amount is needed but it packs a big punch while adding moisture and shine to your nails.  Always start with clean, buffed and filed nails before applying polish.

Base 

I used to never apply a base to my nails but quickly learned that by not doing so can cause discoloration.  I don't think you need an expensive base, just one that you like.  I used to love and use Milani's base coat that was in a grey bottle and had a gel-like consistency but I think it has been discounted because I can no longer find it. :( It was cheap and worked amazingly well.  I currently love and use Revlon Colorstay Gel base which is a lot similar to the Milani base coat. By using a base coat you are  protecting you nails and also providing a smooth canvas for your application of color, I think of it like a primer.

Color 

My favorite nail polish brands are Essie, Butter London and OPI (in that order).  I prefer Essie because of the size of the applicator brush, availability, consistency (not thick) and wide range of colors. I have small nails and larger brushes (e.g. OPI) make it harder for me to control the amount of polish being applied while painting my nails.  Everyone has their own technique and what works for them but I like to paint my nails in three stokes starting in the middle. Always try to paint in thin even layers, if the first layer is thicker than you would like, adjust the second  and third (if needed) coats.  I always do at least two coats of color polish for opaqueness and let the polish set in between coats (20-40 seconds).

Fast Dry Top Coat

Less favorite thing to do is to wait for your nails to dry right?  I've used a lot of fast dry top coat polishes but the seche vite is my favorite one hands down and a professional favorite too.  I always try other brands but in the end always return to using it because not only does it dry your nails in ten minutes but it also adds a gorgeous shine to your nails.  It can also make your manicure last longer depending on your activity.  My only con is that it does get gooey towards the end of the bottle, but I find this the case with all fast dry polishes.

I also do not wear polish on my nails a few days a week to allow them to "breathe"; read some where once that your nails basically suffocate when polish is applied and can lead to unhealthy nails if you chronically have them covered. I don't know why that fact stuck with me but it did.

those are my tips, would love to read about yours and what works for you! xo 

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