Basics of a Manicure: How to Perfect your Manicure

I love painting my nails and find it very therapeutic. It’s one of my favourite past times. Now, I don’t have amazing natural nails; they are tiny and I keep them short out of preference too, therefore I don’t produce top class manicures, but nonetheless it’s a firm hobby of mine. I hear of so many struggles from people about the stress of painting their nails, but practice really does make perfect. It took me a good year to fully understand the technique of nail painting. Below are my must have steps to any mani!


Keep your cuticles tidy

If you are looking for the clean cut mani, my main tip would be to stay away from the cuticle when painting your nails. The cuticle is the skin below the nail and this should be looked after just as much as the nail itself. You can buy various cuticle oils and creams to keep them hydrated and this will also mean it will be easier to push back before a manicure. To push your cuticles back, apply an oil or cream to the area and gently push them back toward the rest of you skin with a cuticle pusher or simply a stick like tool. I know this sounds painful but it really isn’t. If there is pain when you do this, it may be that you are pushing them back too far. Pushing your cuticles back gradually will not only provide a better shape to the nail beds, but will increase the surface area of the nail. 

Never doubt a base coat 

Base coats are a great place to start any manicure. The base coat will cover the natural nail and will fill in any bumps to allow the paint to be applied smoothly. Not only will the base coat allow the paint to adhere to the nail nicely, but it will also help when removing the nail polish. The base coat is simply a barrier between the natural nail and the nail paint, so therefore it will prevent the polish from staining the natural nail. 

Try painting sideways

The best way to paint your nails is on a sturdy surface and with both hands resting on the table to prevent shaking. When painting the colour onto your nail, it may help to point the hand you are painting sideways, for example pointing it towards your opposite hand. This means you can focus on keeping the paint within the sides of your nail and you can also judge the overall coverage on your nail. 

The Three Line trick! 

I usually paint my nails by starting at my nail bed and moving towards the tip of the nail. The three line trick involves starting in the lower middle section of the nail, then bring the paint down towards the cuticle (but not touching the cuticle) and then continuing the line up to the tip of the nail, and this should leave a line of polish directly down the centre of the nail. Then you draw two slightly curved lines on each side of the line to cover the remaining of the nail. By splitting the painting up into three sections really does simplify the process. I love this trick and it covers the nail perfectly!

Topcoat is essentially a savour

I love a topcoat! It adds a lovely shine to your manicure and makes it last longer. Topcoats also cover any imperfections on your nails, for example any lines or bumps in the paint. You can get a range of topcoats, including fast drying ones, high shine ones or matte ones, which are all great! 


I can’t stress enough how much time painting your nails takes to prefect. I couldn’t paint my nails at all when I first got into nail art, but I kept trying and now I don’t have an issue when painting my nails, well 9 times out of 10 anyway! At the end of the day, manicures are a way to express yourself, they don’t need to be perfect at all! As long as you love the end result and are excited to show them off, that’s all that matters. It’s a hobby, a pass time, so just enjoy it and take the relaxing benefits that come with it.

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