Friday, January 21, 2011

How I Care For My Nails

How do I care for my nails?  This is probably one of the most common questions  I receive along with a ton of compliments regarding my nail art designs.  First of all, I have always been a crafty gal at heart.  At a tender age I begun to sew and design my own garments. This all started out with making clothes for my dolls then I expanded into making for myself. I also crochet and decorate cakes to name some other artistic hobbies of mine.  The designing aspect of my nails is  something that I greatly enjoy and It brings me much joy and satisfaction.  Pretty much the same feeling when I transform a piece of plain fabric into something exquisite or bake and decorate a cake.   Art is a huge part of my life. I'd be non-existent without it in my life.

My nails are "natural." Yes, I don't believe in acrylics as it can be damaging to the nails. Besides, one can achieve so much even with short nails.   My hands are exposed to water a lot, doing the dishes etc.  so keeping my cuticles and hands moisturized is necessary to prevent dry cracked skin especially around the cuticles.  Because I formulate my own beauty goodies, I always have an array of carrier oils around but my absolute favorite for moisturizing my cuticles are jojoba and Vitamin E Oils.  Jojoba Oil is similar to our skins own oils, making it suitable for this kind of use.  I simply add a few drops of Vitamin E Oil and keep this concoction in a bottle easy accessible for use.

Here are a few photos of recent designs on both long and shorter nails.

I have never believed in pushing back my cuticles and don't think it's necessary.  Here's a quick video with more on why you shouldn't push back your cuticles. 

I also allow my nails to breath in between manicures and I yield great results with cleaning my nails with fresh lemon or lime juice on a cotton ball.  Baking soda also works great. Simply add a small amount on a saucer and wet with a bit of water before scrubbing with a nail brush.  To prevent staining of the nails, I always apply a base coat before laying down my initial coat of polish. 
For those of you that are experiencing difficulty with dry, brittle nails, I strongly recommend you not bite on your nails, use gloves to do the dishes, stay away from acrylics and I have found that filing your nails in a square shape helps tremendously with promoting  durability.  Always file your nails ONLY in one direction to avoid chipping.   There are many nail file options at your local drug store. Opt for one that enables you to file, buff and shine.   I highly recommend you stay away from Acetone too as it can be quite harsh on brittle nails.  My choice is always a non-acetone formula.  I know some gals claim that the latter isn't as effective as acetone for removing glitters and rhinestones. The non-acetone formula does take a tad bit longer but does work great too. 

I hope this post has enlightened you in some way.  Should you have any further questions, don't be afraid to send 'em my way.

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