At home nail tips to keep your nails healthy and fabulous.

By: Amanda Anderson

Gorgeous nails should be part of any beauty regime, rather you opt for acrylic nails or maintaining healthy natural nails, great nail care is essential to keep nails from damage. While we all can appreciate a fabulous manicure, there are basic things we can do at home to keep our nails in the best condition. You won’t necessarily need to spend a fortune to have a healthy set of nails, but a commitment to maintaining quality care is essential to having beautiful hands.

Always use a base coat to protect your nails from nail polish that could possibly leave stains.
Base coats are not only great for salon use, but they should be a huge part of your at home regime. Since so many nail polishes cheap and expensive stain nails, it’s imperative to use a base coat for all manicures. A really great base coat will not only protect your nails, but it will also supply nutrients to promote healthy growth and also strengthen. There are many brands of base coats, with the most popular being Sally Hansen, Essie, OPI and China Glaze products.
Protect your cuticles.
While clipping and pushing back cuticles isn’t mandatory for healthy nails, moisturizing cuticles is essential to upkeep. In the winter months especially, cuticles are most likely to dry and damage. Cuticle creams protect the cuticles in harsh weather, and keep them in the best of shape despite the seasons. Edible oils are also effective in great cuticle care, so use Olive, Coconut, or Jojoba oil if you don’t want to use a cuticle cream. 
Also be sure to soak your nails in hot, soapy water for 15 minutes in between manicures.
Apply nail polish in thin layers, starting from the middle.
Nail polish application can be very tricky, especially when dealing with thicker formulas. However, thin layers seem to work best when dealing with all polish types. When painting your nails, always start by applying a brush stroke in the middle of the nail, and follow up with one to the right and then left, being sure to blend all layers.
Invisible polish paired with a top coat extends polish durability.
Top coats may add some shine and expand the life of a manicure for a a couple days, but a clear nail polish can make it last longer. This is only because a clear nail polish is naturally thicker than a top coat. After painting your nails with your preferred color, apply a coat of clear nail polish, and follow up with a top coat.
To drag your manicure out to a week or longer, apply both again every two days.
When filing your nails, avoid the seesaw motion to prevent splitting.
We all want the perfect nail shape, but filing can be strenuous on the nails. A seesaw motion may help you get your shape faster, but it also causes a lot of damage to the nail, and can cause some serious breakage. Always file your nails in one direction.
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