Sunday, September 22, 2013

The DIY Manicure

Everyone has an oft-neglected step. For my mum, it's washing her face and applying the whole of her skincare routine--I know...are we really related? For me, it's, one, perfume (despite the fact that my creator has a whole arsenal of Jo Malone downstairs), and, two, nails. Call me lazy, but, because a nail painting soirée rarely happens more than twice a month here at chez 'Parisian To Be', it makes rolling out the steps even more luxurious.
So it's a Sunday--undeniably my favorite day of the week. I've already scarfed down the pancakes (these, to be exact) and whilst I engross myself in the whole of Law and Order: Special Victims Unit Season 2, I'll grab my tools and get manicure-ing.
After you wash your hands (the Dr. Bronner's Soap is my favorite ever), grab the nail polish remover and a cotton pad and get removing.
Clip, trim, file, or whatever floats your boat. I, personally, can't stand nail filers, so I normally clip and just file to remove the pointy bits. Then, we're onto cuticle removing. Although I've only tried the Sally Hansen Cuticle Remover Maximum Strength, I'm not blinded by the fact that it's bloody amazing. I normally apply around the cuticle bed and up the sides, leave on for about a minute, then gently press with one of those cuticle-pusher-backer-tools. Mine is some cheapy bit that I found in the depths of my drawer (probably from a Barbie nail set...) so leave your tool recommendations below...si veux plait.
After that, I normally wash my hands again--mostly because I'm a germaphob. Then, I apply a pea sized amount of the Soap & Glory Hand Food. First off, the name is absolutely adorable. Also, when people say that this smells like the Coco Mademoiselle Perfume, they're not lying.
Using the cotton pad soaked in remover, I run over the nail once more to 'dehydrate' (sounds high-tech, but I just read it in a magazine once...I think) and get ready for the painting.
Unless you've been living under a rock, you should know that the nail combo known as OPI Nail Envy and Seche Vite Top Coat is, by far, the most blogger loved duo. And now, take a guess, because they're sitting on my bathroom shelf as we speak. Well, one of them is--and that's the OPI Nail Envy. Sorry, but it hasn't been invited to the nail soirée because I've found something better. Nailtiques Formula 2 Nail Protein is my nail polish base of choice. Why? Whilst my nails were in the state of a peeling and breaking disaster, this was the only thing that sorted them out and saved them to their natural state. Oh, I tried the Nail Envy, but it only seemed to make matters worse.
So a slap of Nailtiques, followed by your color of choice (and you have no idea how many fall shades I'm chasing) and, then a layer of the Seche Vite for a glossy, quick drying finish. Simples.
After the polish has dried (arguably the hardest part of the whole darn day), I layer on some Burt's Bees Lemon Cuticle Cream--it smells lovely (of lemon; duhrr), has acidic properties to break down dead skin, and nourishes for a healthy finish.
So, now I've got nice looking, polished nails and have completely indulged myself in the act known as the 'DIY manicure'. In short, I promise I'll try to make it more of a regular occurrence because I know that you're wishing for some more nail color notes.


  1. I usually forget to do the whole manicure pampering part, I only do the remove my nail polish before adding more nail polish part. I can't stand those metal cuticle pushers, they just look painful. I've been wanting to try that Sally Hanson Cuticle Remover to deal with those pesky dead skin x

  2. Nails are definitely the thing I neglect most too. I absolutely hate waiting for the polish to dry and I always manage to chip them the very next day! x


  3. I love Soap and Glory products...they're fab!! :)

    Layla xx


  4. Love the look of the cuticle remover, I have one like it at home and it is so useful! x

    Maddy from UNSTITCHEDD

  5. I really like the Burt's Bees Lemon Cuticle Butter, I always have it in my hand bag & i love to take it when I fly as my hands & nails get so dry. My tin has lasted me for the longest time. Such a good little purchase


  6. Mine has lasted ages, as well. It really is amazing. It's such a shame more people don't know about it. xo

  7. It's a nail life-saver. xo

  8. I know, right?!? I'm so gutted that we can only get a few products from the range in the US. The Sugar Crush stuff is just calling my name.... xo

  9. Try the Seche Vite. It translates to English as 'dry fast' and--oh--does it dry fast. xo

  10. I know what you mean with the cuticle pusher-backers, but I don't know if my OCD and non-cared-for cuticles could live under the same roof. xo


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