Manicures and Nail Care (4)

Women after doing their nails
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We'll discuss the steps for applying polish in a moment, but for now, let's talk buffing. Apply a small dab of buffing cream to the center of each nail with a cotton swab or the unused end of your orangewood stick. The cream is usually quick-drying, so give it just a moment and use your nail buffer to rub the cream all over the nail and begin buffing the nail plate with long, quick strokes.
The act of buffing and the texture of the cream mean that the nail tends to heat up in this process, so try to keep your number of strokes in succession to three or four. It's easiest to count it out. (Back, forth, back, forth, and pause; back, forth, back, forth, and pause; etc.) You'll start to see the results after a few repetitions and you can continue until you reach your desired level of shine.
And now you have well-groomed hands. You'll be ready to show them off, or wait for someone to notice them. You'll be surprised how many people do. However, we still need to talk about applying nail polishes for those people who want to use them.
Applying Nail Polish:
Applying nail polish seems like a simple way to finish the nails after manicuring, but the following procedure is recommended to get the best results and longest wear from your polish.
How to apply nail polish
Step One: Basecoat
Starting with the little finger and working your way in to the thumbs, apply a coat of clear polish. There are polishes designed specifically for use as base coats. The purpose of the base coat is to fill in any uneven spots in the surface of the nail and to prevent the nail from being stained by any color that is later applied. (If all you want is to have clear polish on your nails, simple apply two coats of clear polish, and you're done.)
Step Two: Colored Polish
Carefully apply your colored polish to the nails working from little finger inward. Allow the first coat to dry completely and then apply a second coat to ensure even coverage. Use an orangewood stick dipped in nail polish remover to scrape away any mistakes.
Step Three: Topcoat
Once your colored polish has been applied and allowed to dry fully, add another coat of clear polish to the nails. (Again, there are polishes designed specifically for use as a top coat.) The purpose of the top coat is to seal the color and protect it against chipping and scuffs.
The finished nails will look glossy and have depth of color. The great thing about nail color is that it is a fashion accessory in and of itself. You can change your color to match an outfit, or your mood. It's easy and comparably quick.
Model Photos: Shutterstock
See also:
Nail care Q&A
Make-up techniques