I’ll try not be a whiner.
But my kids are HOME AGAIN on today (it’s Friday).
They asked me if we were going to do anything special since they didn’t have school.
I looked at them DEAD IN THE EYE and said,
“No. Having Friday off isn’t special anymore. You have every Friday off. It’s the new normal. How about when you go to school for a full week, then we do something special?”
So, I apologize for my themed “I LOVE THESE THINGS” this week, but mama doesn’t have the time to work like she used to…these kids need to go back to school.
I Love These Things Nail Edition
I love to have my fingernails painted.
I love a good pedicure and manicure. In fact, if truth be told, I spend a good chunk of change on “nail and toenail care” every year. And while I usually pay the professionals to do my toenails, it’s more often than not that care for my fingernails myself.
Since I’m a DIY manicurist, I’ve tried about every product out there. I’ve done UV gel nails, gel polishes, one-minute manicures, nail polish remover with and without acetone, special nail files and about every kind of nail polish known to man. So this week, I thought I would share the products I use on a regular basis, plus three nail polish colors that I can’t live without.
I use these 100 or 180 grit nail files to shape my nails and 4-way block buffers to even out the ridges on my nails before I paint them. I usually push my cuticles back after I take a hot shower by taking a dry washcloth and gently pushing them back while they are still soft. If I have one or two that are out of control, then I’ll trim them with a cuticle trimmer as needed.
A special tip I learned a few years ago is to let your fingernails “breath” for 24-hours between taking off polish and applying a new coat. For some reason, letting the naked nail “air out” helps the polish to stay on longer and not chip.
Through a process of trial and error, I’ve created a sure-fire formula for nail polish that lasts two weeks and stays shiny.
- Apply one-coat of Revlon Colorstay Base Coat. I’ve tried a bunch of different base coats and this one smoothes out any ridges, keeps nails stain-free, and provides the right amount of stick to eliminate chips.
- Apply two coats of your favorite polish.
- Apply one coat of CND Vinylux Top Coat. This polish is “supposed” to be used only with Vinylux polishes, but I’ve had just as good of luck using it with any kind of polish. It seriously provides a ROCK HARD top coat that makes it nearly impossible to chip. The only downside is that it can leave polishes dull…which is why you need the next step.
- Apply two coats of Sally Hansen Clearly Quick polish. This is my secret weapon. It not only instantly dries fingernail polish it also provides an amazing shine that lasts for at least 10 days.
Now, in between the nail polish and nail prep is the stage called “nail care”. Nail care is important because it keeps nails healthy and in good shape. Every night I use this cuticle oil to keep my cuticles soft (which helps keep my nails healthy and strong) and I only use this nail polish remover because it is STRONG enough to remove polish easily, but gentle enough to not dry out your nails.
Favorite Polish Colors
I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect shade of grey polish and I finally found it – Sally Hansen Steely Serene. It is the right amount of grey, taupe, and pink (which is PERFECT for this girl with a cool undertone). The minute I put it on, I actually gave a squeal because it was so amazing.
OPI Cajun Shrimp is the perfect red color. It’s perfect on toes and fingernails. It’s the right amount of red and orange. It’s summertime. It’s classic. It’s perfect. I wear this color almost exclusively on my toenails.
In addition to my hunt for the perfect grey color…was the hunt for the perfect neutral color. I’ve done every magazine’s “Best Neutral Nail Polish” and each time they were just wrong for me. It always felt like my fingernails were too white, too pink or too tan to really look neutral. But Bare It All actually makes my fingernails look invisible and that is as neutral as you can get.
The best part….if you bought EVERYTHING on this page the total would be less than one gel manicure with tip and you’ll get to use the products for the next three months. Think of the time and money you will save!! (Or at least that is what I think.)
Also This Week:
- What I’m Listening To
- What I Splurged On This Week (And I’m SO STINKING excited.)
- What I’m Reading
- What I’m Wearing
See past editions of I LOVE These Things.