By Juliana Day
hard to begin typing this column because I am
forced to look at my own fingers. Dry, uneven
nails, hangnails and cuticles that would make
you cringe. I'm embarrassed to admit that this
fashion and beauty columnist has fallen terribly
short as an example in this department.
problem is simple: time. Most of us lead busy
lives and a manicure doesn't make the top of
our "to-do" lists. This would mean
finding a babysitter, taking time off work,
cutting into precious time with our spouse,
or juggling an already full schedule for this
seemingly unimportant task.
suggestion to all your busy gals out there is
to try my own remedy: The Home Made Manicure.
Do it at your own leisure without the extra
time and expense.
soap or mild facial cleanser
Nail clippers or a nail scissor
Olive oil or lemon juice
Nail brush and polish.
Remove old nail polish. Wet a cotton pad with
polish remover, hold on nails for a few seconds
to dissolve polish, then wipe away in an outward
sweeping motion to keep cuticles clean.
Wash your hands with warm water and luxurious,
moisturizing soap or with a mild facial scrub
(If your hands feel rough).
Pat hands dry with a soft towel.
Clip or cut nails to a length slightly longer
than the one desired. I recommend a mid to
short length oval nail. The oval nail is the
most flattering and frankly, long nails are
a fashion undertaking that only Morticia can
Use an emery board to file nails down to the
desired length. Avoid metal files that can
easily rip the nail. File from the outer corners
towards the tip. Do not use a back and forth
motion as this can make nails appear jagged.
Soak hands in a bowl with warm water and 1-2
tbsp. of lemon juice or olive oil to soften
hands and cuticles. Let soak approximately
5-10 minutes. (This may be a good time to
catch up on Dr. Phil.) Then clean with a nail
Apply cuticle cream to the cuticles. Massage
the entire hand with moisturizing lotion using
the thumb of your other hand in circular motion.
This will get the blood moving and warm the
hands of those with poor circulation.
Grab your orange stick and gently push back
cuticles. Clipping cuticles is now a no-no!
Don't do it or you may risk an unsightly or
Take a pair of nail scissors or small clippers
and clip off any hang nails - DO NOT pull
them off, again: infection ladies!
Use nail polish remover to wipe nails of any
Choose your nail color. Dark colors are more
dramatic but may have to be repainted and
maintained every few days. They can also make
nails appear shorter. Light colors are easier
to maintain, and you will be able to match
your wardrobe with ease.
When you begin to apply your polish, begin
at the center of the nail with one stroke.
Two more strokes on the side should do the
trick. Only have enough polish on the brush
for one line at a time.
All polishes are different, but allow at least
one minute of setting time before applying
your second coat.
Nails will dry in a couple of minutes, but
to avoid unnecessary chipping and smudging,
let your nails set for about 15 minutes before
you start swinging a hammer again.