HAND PAINTING A PERFECT FRENCH MANICURE With polish...I load the brush with one of my 2 favorite whites ( #200 Off white, or #39 brite white) fron nailite. Starting at one corner of the "U" shaped smile line I want to create, I lah down thw brush sideways and almost parallel to the nail, and then swip down the U and back up the other side to that corner, all in one swipe preferabbly (sometimes I use 2 swipes, one from right to centar, and other to meet in from left to center) Then I "Pull-Out" the polish the rest of the way over the free edge with the extra polish that was deposited ina line of "puddle" below the smile line I just created....float the brush now pointing toward the cuticle, but still parallel to nail (not up and down like a pencel) to drag this extra polish out and over the free edge, being sure not to disturb the smile line...add extra polish to your brush if needed for complete coverage all in one coat. Let this white set up for a while before proceeding to an overcoat color or just plain clear topcoat for a super natural look, w/ no grow out reminders!
Some quick thoughts on manicuring I only perform the waterless manicure...who could have possibly come up w/ the idea long, long ago of soaking a woman's hands in warm soapy water( isn't that where most of our hands spend a great deal of time anyway everday (cleaning, etc!), and why they look the way they do!) Anyway, soaking in water may soften the cuticles, but it drys out the skin, and makes the nail too fragile to file!(It's OK for feet though, that skin is tougher/thicker and the nails are alsp stronger, in most cases!) We are always told from childhood to be very gentle when combing out our wet hair, because that is when it is most fragile....well the same goes for our nails! Nails and hair have the exact same composition...nails are just compacted strands of cells exactly the same as hair, but again copacted together, not left in strands as hair is....(that's why vetical splits can be difficult to cure...more on that subject later) So I always prefer to file nails to length and shape as the first step (after washing-up and sanitizing of course!)...On fragile nails, I will even do this filing step BEFORE removing the polish!!!!! Then I go on to steps to soften and condition the cuticles and skin! Either w/ paraffin wax or electric mitts. In either case I first exfoliate the skin w/ salt or sugar mixed with mild lotion hand soap, or mixed w/ a thin lotion (sugar is a gentler exfoliator than salt...so it depends on the client.....) [I actually use the salt and have the client do this step themselves in their initial pre-service wash-up....but that's not very pampering...and if you are going to do a lot of manicures they must be pampering....I only do manicures as a courtesy for current clients visiting friends, etc, or as a favor before a big event (wedding) of say the sisiter of a current client....I have a completely FULL book (40-50 appts.per week, with a 2 year long waiting list) of just gel nail fill-ins, and so do not have the time to get to do many manicures anymore.... not that I don't want to do them, I love to do them, because booked right they are a good profit margin.... My method of overlapping manicure clients....I have them come in 1/2 hour before they are on my books, I send them to wash-up and exfoliate themselves, get their beverages, and magazines etc....Then I quickly leave my current client to spend 2 minutes w/ this client(the luxury/necessity of an L shaped station!) doing her/his initial shaping and or shortening (I use clippers to shorten 1st then shape...no need to get them perfect at this point, that little bit can be tended to at the end!)And then put them in paraffin, or you could use elctric mitts here, in either case I first rub in oil---see my note in Hints and tips about the oil I "make"-----next I cover w/ a heavy cream---like Eucerin Cream (not lotion!) or udder balm-----and finally send them to sit and relax untill I have finished the client ahead of them. So now I need only spend 10-15 minutes after her paraffin treatment, w/ her doing cuticle work, buffing the nails, and polishing...voila'....$25 for 15 minutes of booked time (what I call "Face Time") Of course, in the more pampered version you would extend that face time to 20 to 30 minutes to do massage and other nicities (such as the lemon treatment...see that tip in the web pages also). For electric mitts see Nailite inside the beautytech.com web site, or Sally's carry's them also, they are about $50 a pair....I prefer the paraffin wax though (Nailite has a unit for $100, and their wax is only #10.99 for 6 lbs---note I usually only dip 2 times in the wax, not the 3-5 times manufacturers say too!)it (paraffin) seems more luxurious...although when I'm running behind I'll put the heated mitts on w/ the paraffin to keep it warmer longer....clients get antsy when thair paraffin gets cold....or I just re-dip them in paraffin if I'm behind...."boy are you dry, lets re-dip you and penetrate this conditioning tretament even deeper into your skin"...who could refuse! Here is a scaled down version of my manicure steps that I wrote up for my daughters Girl Scout Troop. I will add the "professional" version of the steps at some point in the near future! Here are the at home manicure steps and tips instructions I handed out to my daughters Girl Scout Brownie troop in conjuction with the grooming badge we worked on that day.... Many of the moms were clamoring for additional copies for themselves as their daughters would not part with theirs!
Of course you'll get the best results from a professional salon manicure with paraffin wax and other treatments, so treat yourself before special events, but in between visits you can follow these steps to keep your hands and nails conditioned and neat looking!
Supplies: Liquid hand soap and table salt (to make exfoliating scrub), natural edible oil (such as rice bran, apricot kernel, viamin E, jojoba, etc), heavy cream (like Eucerin, cream is better than lotion! Even vaseline will do), Baggies or saran wrap, towels or oven mitts (to wrap hands in), cuticle pusher or birchwood stick, white buffer block or disc, emery boards, (fingernail cutters are optional if needed), white vinegar (helps polish adhere to the nail, extending greatly the life of your manicure), lint-free paper towel, manicure brush or old toothbrush (for cleaning nails) base coat, colored polish, topcoat (or a 3 or 4 way buffer in lieu of the polish for a high shine). As you can see, all of these supplies are readily available in the house, or at your local drug store!
Manicure Steps (As written for Brownie Girl Scouts, they were given the supplies to work with, you'll need to assemble your in adavnce)
1) EXFOLIATE Wet hands. Mix hand soap and salt (or suger if preferred, it's a little gentler, and not as gritty) together and wash hands and rub in. Rinse well. Pat dry.
2) MOISTURIZE Rub in olive oil. Next put on cream.(If paraffin is available, you would use it here and continue) Wrap hands in baggies. Wrap with warm towel. Sit for 10 minutes. Remove baggies and wipe off extra oils.
3) CUTICLES Push back cuticles gently with cuticle stick. Never cut your cuticles.
4) SHAPE NAILS File nails into square-oval shape. Never file into "pointy" shape, and don't make too round either. *The other option is to shape the nails before the moisturizing treatment
5) BUFF nails with white buffer.
6) SHINE nails with 3-way buffer. Black, white, gray is the order! Polish is optional after this step!
7) Wash nails with soap and water to remove oil.
8) Dehydrate nail surface with white vinegar. Pour some on a paper towel and wipe on nails.
9) Apply clear base coat. 1 coat, very thinly. Let dry.
10) Apply 1st coat of colored polish. Let dry a minute or 2.
11) Apply 2nd coat of polish, if needed, and let dry a minute or 2 again for best results.
12) Apply topcoat polish. Sit still and let nails dry!
13) Apply oil to nails to help prevent "dents" and smudges.
****Some optional extras to add: After exfoliating, but before moisturizing, soak entire hand (or foot for that matter!) in warm milk for a few minutes, to get the benefits of the AHA's. (when doing feet, some epsom salts added to the water are wonderful!), rinse, then do a citrus fruit scrub. Using lemon, lime or orange slices or quarters, scrub the fruit onto the skin. The natural fruit acids give a nice finished, polished look to the skin! Now proceed to the misturizing treatment. Placing your wrapped hands on an electric heating pad gives the treament added benefit!
Everyday Nail Care Tips
1) Push back cuticles while in the tub or shower, or right after, every day. And never, ever, cut your cuticles or allow anyone else to cut your cuticles!!!!
2) Apply cuticle oil to nails and cuticles every night before bed.
3) When wearing polish apply 1 coat of clear topcoat every other day on top of other polish.
4) When gardening wear gloves! Wash dirt out from under nails as soon as possible afterwards. (Rub nails across "soggy" ivory soap bar to keep dirt out from under nails and make clean-up a snap!)
5) Use hand lotion or cream every day.
6) Do not bite or pick at your nails or cuticles.
7) Do not pick at nail polish, take it off with remover!
8) Keep nails at a reasonable length so that they won't break (not too long!). Keep them all the same length too!
9) Do not use your nails to scrape things off of other things. Your nails are jewels not tools!
10) Nails do NOT need to be polished or be long in length to be well groomed! Well groomed nails are CLEAN, even in length, shaped nicely, and well maintained.
11) Your fingernails and toenail polish do NOT have to match. Wear whatever colors make YOU happy!
12) For more hints and tips have an adult help you go to my website at www.nailsplash.com and click on the "Client Info" page from the main menu!