For modern women, getting their nails professionally done is no longer reserved for special occasions and festive seasons. More women are also increasingly interested in expressing themselves through nail art. What this means is that not only are women spending more on manicures, they are also splashing out on at-home care products to maintain the professional results. But before you are tempted to buy whatever your manicurist recommends, here’s how you can truly prolong the salon effects to make your manicures work harder for you:
Do your prep
While there are usually several add-on options at your nail salon like scrub, paraffin wrap and even masks, you can save a pretty penny by doing these prep work at home. While they may cost just $10 onwards, if you’re getting your nails done weekly, that’s a minimum of $30 saved if you opt for a classic manicure compared to a spa manicure.
And the prep work is actually easy. The next time you’re in the shower and treating your skin to a little exfoliation and mask, use a little extra product and give your hands a good scrub, focusing on the back of your hands and your elbows. Try leaving a tub of body lotion in the shower so you can also moisturise yourself from head to toe while your skin is still slightly damp for optimal results.
Keep the shine
While many women opt for gel nails due to their long-lasting wear, gel nails can weaken nails as the top layers of your nail can be damaged when you finally get them removed. So just imagine how weak your nails can be if you are getting one gel manicure after another.
If you already have naturally weaker and brittle nails, opt for regular polish instead, and reapply top coat every day at home. This keeps them looking shiny so it’s like you just had them done.
Protect the tips
When applying the top coat at home, don’t forget to paint along the tips as well. This binds the nail polish to your nails and forms a protective barrier, a crucial factor as this is where your nails chip the most frequently from activities like typing on the keyboard to doing household chores.
If you’re a fan of intricate embellishments on your nails but are also a domestic goddess at the same time, put on gloves when you have to do chores. This helps protect your nails from any scratches or chipping and keeps them looking salon-fresh.
Moisturise your cuticles
There’s nothing that says you need a manicure than dry and rough cuticles. To keep that to a minimum, all you have to do is keep them moisturised. So the next time you’re applying hand cream, spend an extra minute or two massaging it into the cuticles to soften them and keep them in check.
If your cuticles are extremely dry, keep a cuticle oil that’s rich in nourishing ingredients either at your desk or by your bedside table and massage a drop or two.
When all else fails and you accidentally break a nail, be sure to keep a nail file in your purse so you can file down the nail immediately. And when you’re filing your nails, it is important to file in the same direction. Never go back and forth as that can weaken your nail.
Now that you know how to make the most out of your manicures, here are some of the best manicure ideas that we’ve scoured Instagram for. From subtle negative space nail art to bold, bright colours, there’s definitely something to suit your every mood.