How to get a perfect at-home manicure during quarantine

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Relaxing days in your favorite nail salon are a distant memory, at least during the coronavirus quarantine. Then it is time to take matters into your own hands. With a little expert advice, and one of our favorite nail kits, you can easily master the art of manicure at home.

Here are all the professional steps, tools, and tips you’ll need for perfect nails.

Step 1: Enter the zone

Whether you’re a dye-dye expert, gel guru, or classic Polish gallon, the key to a salon-worthy manicure is grooming.

It’s important to choose a workstation that you can turn into “your own little spa oasis at home,” says Leah Yari, co-founder of clean beauty brand Côte. Her founding partner Mary Lennon recommends a place with natural light. “The best thing is a comfortable table in the best-lit and well-ventilated place,” she says. “This is usually a kitchen or dining table. You need to make sure you have enough space to distribute your items, making them easy to see and reach. “

Step 2: pre-polishing preparation

Start by removing the old color. Lennon and Yari advise using an acetone-free nail polish remover, followed by a quick alcohol wipe to ensure the nail plates are clean and pristine. (Or follow these steps to remove a gel manicure.)

Now is the time to file. “You just want to file in one direction,” advises the famous nail artist Miss Pop, who dealt with the clutches of Gwen Stefani and MJ Rodriguez, and designed the nails for the Prabal Gurung and Moschino fashion shows. “If you file from one side to the other, you are creating little tears on your nails and that can cause flaking, peeling and breakage.”

While you can choose any nail shape (from square to stiletto), Miss Pop favors the oval or round shape because they “reflect the fingertips and give it a smooth look that enhances and lengthens the finger.”

Lastly, run a tampon on each nail, until it feels noticeably softer.

Various all-in-one kits make these pre-polishing steps easy. The Côte Classic Kit, for example, is an excellent starting point for newbies. It is stocked with basic essentials, including the brand’s clear “Base Strength + Top Traveler” formula, a nail file, nail clippers, tweezers, a pusher, and three acetone-free removal pads.

Cote Classic Set
Fold

Classic set, $ 42 in Fold

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Or try the Olive & June beauty brand toolbox kit, which comes with a smart, wide-grip “Poppy” handle (fits on any enamel bottle). The seven-piece kit also includes a nail polish remover pot, an easy touch-up cleaning brush, a flat-edge nail clipper, a dual-grain nail file, a buffing bucket for shaping and smoothing, and a nourishing cuticle serum with flower of Cactus.

Olive & June The Toolbox Kit
Olive and june

The toolbox kit, $ 42 in Olive and june

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Step 3: Cue the cuticles

To cut or not to cut? Oh, the old cuticle question.

“You don’t want to cut your cuticles because you could end up cutting yourself, and that leaves you exposed to infection,” says Miss Pop. She recommends simply pushing back on the troublesome skin near the nail bed. “After taking a hot shower and my skin is soft and supple, I use another nail and gently push back around the bottom” U “of my cuticle. This pushes them back beautifully.”

Miss Pop also recommends using nail tweezers (do not peel) to hang the nails to prevent further tears, which could leave your hands with open cuts. No good

To prepare your cuticles for success, try Deborah Lippmann’s Cuticle Lab Nail Treatment Set. The four-piece assortment includes a step-by-step guide, cuticle oil, a cuticle remover, The Cure Ultra Nourishing Cuticle Repair Cream and a pusher.

Deborah Lippman Cuticle Lab Nail Set
Sephora

Deborah Lippmann Cuticle Lab Nail Treatment Set, $ 45 at Sephora

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Step 4: polish time

Before stacking the enamel, don’t forget to apply a clear base coat. “Although color is the fun part, basecoat is important if you want your color to last,” explains Côte’s Lennon, noting that a thin coat will suffice.

Now in the main event! Regardless of your polishing preference (gel, dip, or classic lacquer), finding the right stroke is crucial to nail your manicure at home.

“Start with a downward swipe in the middle, then continue with sideways swipes to spread the enamel,” says Yari. When it’s time to paint the dreaded nondominant hand, try “anchoring your hand against something like a table to have more control of where the brush is going,” he advises. A good rule of thumb is to wait at least 5 minutes between coats, which “really does wonders to aid the overall drying process and avoid pressure bumps later,” says Lennon.

Step 5: seal the deal

Finish with a glossy top coat to seal your work. Or to mix things up with a modern, flat look, Lennon and Yari suggest adding a matte finish to your mani mix.

Now check your nails. Baby how do you feel We hope good as … you know.