I’ve been getting messages asking where I got my current nail varnish from so I thought I’d do a post about my nails! I am the absolute worst at biting my nails – I was a thumb sucker in my youth and then a chubby kiddy and then a non-committal smoker but the point is I’ve always been used to having my hands near my mouth!
I actually use my nails as a check-in for when I’m stressed because when I’m in ‘let’s just crack on’ mode – head down and all that, my nails are the thing I check in with to see how stressed I am because I’ll bite them without thinking and then suddenly I’ll look down and my whole hand will be bleeding. It’s really not as sexy as it sounds!
So one of my self-care things is that when I have time I do my nails properly – I bought myself a gel nail machine because chipped/smudged nails stress me TF out and have been teaching myself how to do long-lasting nails over the past year. I’m not perfect by any means but I find it’s a really good way for me to make myself take an hour to do something I like and know I’ll get pleasure from – and then there are all the colours to choose from!
Anything to do with colour I’m pretty much obsessed with – especially if it changes so a lot of my gels are thermal but this one is particularly lovely because of how many gradients it has. At my hottest, the colour is a soft peach, at it’s coldest an indigo purple but then the middle temperatures vary all the time.
Here’s a couple of pics of the changing colours – I especially love how you get a French tip effect now and again and watching the colours morph into each other, reminds me of a mood stone!
Putting gels on natural nails does differ to when they go on acrylics – I try not to wear fake nails too much because my natural nails are weak as it is what with the years of biting and when they’re covered by acrylics for too long they get flimsy as hell. The stronger your nails, the longer the gels will last – I’ve found that the biggest problem I have is the varnish peeling away which is why it’s so important to prep the nail for a long-lasting finish.
- Don’t do nails after a long soak in the bath as water weakens them but do make sure they’re clean and dry
- Push the cuticles down and gently clear the nail bed of any dead skin
- Use step 1 of a nail buffer to gently roughen the nails – don’t get them super smooth, this will make them peel quicker. You want the top layer slightly rough so the base coat will stick
- Apply a thin layer of base coat – be careful not to touch the skin edges of your nail at any point as after they’re cured this will be another danger for a potential peel!
- Cure for 30 seconds under a nail lamp for the base coat – you want it sticky, not set, for the first gel layer
- Get the layers as THIN as you can and cap the nail after each one (cap means polishing the edge of the nail)
- Three thin layers are optimal, you don’t want them too thick – and cure for 120 seconds between each layer
- Finish with a thin, capped topcoat for extra shine