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The Dummy’s Guide To Using A Manicure Kit

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You’ve just bought your first manicure kit and realized there’s more to a good mani than painting your nails with your favorite polish. Forget about pricey in-salon manicures you’re now officially capable of giving yourself a professional looking manicure at home. Just so you know, we’re breaking down what each of those tools is meant to do.

Here are some manicure tips and steps on how to use a manicure kit and get a manicure at home:

  • Step 1

    Sure, sharing is caring, but not when it comes to lipsticks, kajals, eyeliners and yes, manicure kits. Many at-home manicure sets can’t be disinfected and sharing the kit can spread infections.

  • Step 2

    An important step of manicure at home is to Wash your hands with soap and water before starting your manicure. Use a fingernail brush—an old toothbrush will also do—to scrub under your nails.

  • Step 3

    The fingernail clipper is a simple tool to trim and shape your nails. Use it to trim down over long nails. Clippers are a quick, safe and easy way to keep your nails to your desired length. Wash and dry the nail clipper after use to keep the blades clean, sharp and prevent nail infections. Clipping your nails to the general shape you want—round, oval or square—makes it easier to file them later.

  • Step 4

    Next use the small wooden stick with a flattened end in the kit, the orange stick, to gently push back the cuticles. Throw the stick away after a couple of uses to prevent the growth of bacteria and germs. Use the flat end of the orange stick to gently push the cuticle back, starting in the middle of the nail. Washing your hands before starting will make the cuticles soft and easier to push back.

  • Step 5

    If your cuticles appear thick and untidy, use the cuticle trimmer or small nail scissor to cut cuticles or hangnails that are protruding and easy to reach. Be careful about not cutting the skin. Wash the trimmer in soapy water and dab dry, or swipe with rubbing alcohol to kill bacteria.

  • Step 6

    Now use the emery board to gently file your nails and smooth the edges. Avoid using metal files because they aren’t flexible and could damage nails. While filing, work in a single direction. If you file back and forth, you risk splintering the nail. Ideally, you should file from the edge of the nail, toward the centre. It’s a good idea to replace your nail files often for hygiene purposes.

    The thinner emery board is meant to smooth out the edges of your nails while the thicker emery board should be used to buff the surface of your nails to smooth over ridges and provide a smooth foundation to paint your nails. Some buffers come in the form of rectangular blocks, with four different surfaces for polishing and smoothing your nail surface.

  • Step 7

    Now wash your hands to remove the nail dust. Dab dry and apply a drop of cuticle oil or lotion and massage in and around the nail beds. Use a soft tissue to soak up residue.

  • Step 8

    Start by applying a clear base coat on your nails. Let it dry. Then apply your favorite colored nail polish. Wearing a base coat will prevent your nails from turning yellow.

Follow these manicure tips and steps for a salon like manicure at home!
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