According to recent statistics, the average woman will spend approximately $500 per year on their nails. Since nail care and nail art have become popular on social media, it has grasped the attention of the masses and they’ve taken an interest in adapting it to their beauty routine. But giving yourself a nice manicure without knowing some key techniques can ruin your entire image or even worse put your health at risk.
Here at Bright Side, we’ve gathered 9 manicure mistakes that are often overlooked by everyone.
1. Not washing your tools
Sanitizing your tools should be the first step and your number one priority. According to research, the area around and under our fingernails stores the largest amount of harmful bacteria, and if these tools are not being washed with disinfectant you are allowing the spread of germs and risking contamination. In addition, storing tools in a sealed bag, allows bacteria to fester.
- So the best way to store your tools is in a breathable container and use disinfectant or alcohol to clean them before and after each use.
2. Cutting your cuticles
We’ve all been guilty of doing this because we’ve seen it occasionally done to us by professionals, but, cutting your cuticles is a major health risk, due to the fact that you leave unprotected cuts on your fingers which could potentially get infected. In addition to that, when the cuticles start growing again, they come back flaky and messy looking which completely ruins your look.
- If you love the look of nipped cuticles, then the best thing for you to do is to use a rosewood stick and push them back. This way you will protect your fingernails from getting an infection while still achieving the aesthetic look that you desire.
3. Not using a base coat
A lot of people believe that a basecoat is unnecessary and a waste of time so they skip this step when they are getting their manicure. However, basecoats were originally created to bind with your natural nails and make your manicure last up to one week longer. This happens because our nails produce natural oils that prevent the nail polish from binding well with the nail, so a base coat keeps the oils out and keeps the manicure or gel polish from chipping.
4. Applying thick coats of polish
We all like a very pigmented look on our nails that takes less time to complete and looks solid, and that automatically makes us apply thicker coats of nail polish. Even though this may seem the best way to go, it is actually a major mistake when you are doing your manicure.
Thick coats of nail polish take twice as long to dry and underneath take approximately 5-6 minutes which is a recipe for a smudging disaster. Nail polish, in general, is not designed to dry well when it’s thick in order to be protected when it’s housed in the bottle.
- So the best thing to do is apply 3-4 thin layers of nail polish instead of 1-2 thick ones.
5. Using Q-tips
Q-tips are proven life-savers especially when it comes to makeup, so we slowly started incorporating them into our manicure routine as well. When nail polish gets on the skin around the nail, we just get a cotton pad and start wiping, but it takes the slightest motion to bring chaos to the whole look and have to start over from the beginning. The cotton fuzzies, no matter how many millimeters they are away from the wet nail polish have a tendency to stick to the manicure and ruin the whole look, forcing you to start from the beginning.
- Instead of using Q-tips, use a very thin makeup brush to clean the area.
6. Filing back and forth
We’ve seen both professionals and amateurs filing their nails back and forth to get a smooth surface/base for their manicure, but what this actually does is damage your nails and spoil your whole manicure. Filing back and forth causes microcracks to appear which makes the application of nail polish look brittle and uneven, and it weakens the nails causing them to break more easily.
- The filing should be in circular motions or in one direction to prevent your nails from becoming weaker and to help you avoid spending money on treatments to help them recover later.
7. Not applying polish underneath the edges
Applying nail polish around and underneath the edges will prevent your manicure from flaking during various activities that include water, like doing the dishes or washing your hair. When we do these activities water gets trapped between the nail and the nail polish causing it to lift and chip around the top edges.
- So applying nail polish underneath the edges will seal that area completely and will help your manicure last up to 5 days longer.
8. Drying nails in cold water
Drying your nails in cold water is a widely known tip for people who would like to dry their freshly polished nails even faster. However, this is just a myth, cold water hardens the nails instead of drying them, the formula of regular nail polish requires oxygen to dry and not liquid. When you dip your fingers in cold water and wait for them to dry what this actually does is harden the manicure and causes it to de-attach from your nails since it was never completely dry.
- So instead of dipping your fingers in cold water, let them air-dry naturally, and if you are in a rush, use a fan.
9. Shaking your nail polish bottle
This is common sense for almost everyone: we think that by shaking our nail polish bottle we distribute the color everywhere especially when the polish is running low. What we didn’t know is that by shaking the nail polish bottle we are essentially mixing the air trapped inside the bottle with the nail polish which causes tiny bubbles, otherwise known as tiny pockets; then we start painting and the polish looks uneven with the little bubbles transferring from the nail polish to our fingernails.
- Instead of shaking your nail polish, roll it slowly in your hands horizontally!
Have you tried any of these tips? What advice would you give to us? Please share your experience in the comments below so that everyone can learn.