Up next in How to Have Pretty Nails (10 videos)
Have pretty fingernails and toes with the mani-pedi tips in these Howcast videos.
You Will Need
- A dishwasher or disinfectant
- Some nail polish remover
- Cotton balls
- Nail clippers
- An emery board
- Warm, soapy water
- A shallow bowl
- A towel
- Cuticle oil or cream
- Orange sticks
- Half a lemon
- Hand cream
- A hot, damp towel
- A clear base coat
- Some pink sheer nail polish
- Some white nail polish
- And a clear top coat
Take off rings
Take off any rings and set them aside until you are through and your nails are dry.
Make sure all reusable tools are clean. Run them through the dishwasher or clean them with disinfectant.
Remove old polish
If there's any old polish on your nails, remove it with a cotton ball soaked in remover.
Trim & shape nails
Trim your nails with a clipper if they're on the longer side, and then shape them with the emery board into ovals or rounded squares. Start on one side of the nail and use short strokes in one direction only—toward the center of the nail—then repeat on the other side of the nail.
Soak your fingers in a bowl filled with warm, soapy water for two minutes and then dry your hands.
Apply cuticle product
Massage cuticle oil or cream into your cuticles to soften them further.
Clean under nails
Pull off a small piece of a cotton ball and wrap it around the tip of an orange stick. Soak it in nail polish remover and use this to remove any dirt or lingering polish under your nails.
Push back cuticles
Push back your cuticles with the orange stick—use a new, disposable one or wash the one you've just used.
Trim any dead hangnails with your clippers.
Rub on hand cream
Rub on hand cream to moisturize your hands and cuticles.
Wrap your hands in a hot towel for a minute to help the cream soak in.
Wipe your nails with a cotton ball soaked in nail polish remover—they must be oil-free for the base coat to adhere properly.
Apply base coat
Apply a base coat of a colorless nail polish and allow it to dry.
Rotate your bottle of white polish so the mixing ball in it stirs the polish, but don't shake—it will create bubbles, which will end up marring the finish on your nails.
Remove the wand from your white polish, wiping one edge of the brush against the opening of the bottle to remove excess polish.
Apply white polish
Apply the white nail polish to the tip of your nail in a thin C-shaped stripe. Go slowly to keep the line neat and tidy and correct mistakes with an orange stick as you go.
Polish other nails
Polish the rest of your nails with this white stripe, then let them dry completely.
Rotate your bottle of sheer pink polish so the mixing ball in it stirs the polish.
Remove the wand from your sheer pink polish, wiping one edge of the brush against the opening of the bottle to remove excess polish.
Apply first stroke
Place the brush in the middle of your nail, almost at the base of your cuticle. Back the brush up until the color just reaches the cuticle, then pull it forward to the end of your nail.
Cover entire nail
Repeat this to the right and left of the center stripe, dunking and wiping the brush on the bottle each time, so the entire nail is covered with three strokes.
Polish all nails
Polish the rest of your nails, then let them dry completely.
Apply top coat
Apply a thin clear top coat to seal the color—and admire your polished hands for at least an hour while they dry.