China Glaze Dazzle Dry

My COMPLETE Nail Care Routine

Monday, June 24, 2013nail a college drop out

So many times I've been asked to reveal how I keep my nails long and strong. And every time I answer that question a nail breaks. Here's to throwing caution to the wind and letting it all air out.

I'll break this post up into two sections, nail blogger basics and general nail/manicure info.

Before we go any further, allow me to preface this blog entry by saying that I am not a licensed nail tech or manicurist. All opinions are my own and solely based on my own experience and does not guarantee you'll have the same results.

Now that I've got that mini disclaimer out of the way, how about we start with  nail blogger basics shall we?

As a nail blogger I spend a lot more time painting and removing nail polish than a non-blogger. Yes, I'm talking about the dreaded swatch fest! 

Swatching (n.) - The painting of nails for the purpose of photographing and removing shortly after. Mostly likely a process that is repeated multiple times within a few hours. Prime example: a swatch fest.

To keep staining and yellowing at bay, I base coat before every color no matter what. My base coats very for this process. They can be anything from my go to nail strengthener to clear nail polish from the dollar store.
If I use top coat I disclose of so on that particular post.

To remove nail polish while swatching I use acetone as opposed to regular non-acetone nail posh remover because, well, ain't nobody got time for that.
Because acetone is so drying I use either cuticle oil, cuticle butter, or whatever cuticle treatment I have at my disposal in between swatches.

Moving on to general nail manicure info!

Before every single mani I thoroughly wash my hands (including the underside of my nail beds) with warm soapy water. I don't use any soap in particular just whatever dish soap I have sitting on the kitchen sink. Next, I dry my hands. Not sure why I felt the need to disclose that, but, the more you know I guess.

Every other week I make a paste of two parts baking soda and one part hydrogen peroxide in a shot glass and scrub my nail beds for a few minutes and then let it sit for a minute or two more. Why? If there is any slight staining that made it past my base coat on a previous mani, this technique gets rid of it. Also. it makes my hands feel super soft. After this I'll wash my hands one more time to remove the baking soda-peroxide mixture and dry my hands again.

If necessary, this is the point where I would file my nails. To reduce splitting and damaging, file in one direction instead of sawing back and forth

Once all that is over it's time for *say it with me folks* base coat! I've mentioned this time and time again, but my all time favorite base coat is my nail strengthener Nail Life Nail Revitalizer. After the mandatory base coat I continue with my regularly scheduled manicure.

I realize this post is getting kind of lengthy, but hang in there I'm coming to the home stretch!

After I've finished my nail art--or my plain nail color--I wait a few minutes then apply top coat.
Some people wonder why top coat is so important. My response: You want your manicure to last right? Protect it.

My favorite top coat is Dazzle Dry Top Coat--full disclosure time! The first time I ever used this product, it was provided for review about a year ago, but I still swear by it now--but I do change it up from mani to mani b/c Dazzle Dry Top Coat retails for $12.50 per .5fl oz bottle and I try to only use it for nail art I fully intended to wear for a few days.

Other top coats I use are Orly Seal On Top Coat, China Glaze Fast Forward Top Coat, and Icing Diamond Shield.

After my top coat has dried I use whatever cuticle treatment I have available. Currently I'm using Lush Cosmetics Lemony Flutter Cuticle Butter. But what would life a nail care regime be without variety, eh? So I often use Secrets of the Sea Almond Cuticle Oil and Poshe Cuticle Care.

And for the last step bathe my hands in a moisture rich lotion! I have sensitive dry skin so I use Vaseline Intensive care, but because I'm cheap, I frequently purchase the generic Target or Walmart versions. Why not save a few bucks for the exact same ingredients?

Well there you have it! My ENTIRE nail care regime. Trust me, The entire process takes a lot less time than it took for me to write this post.

How's that for informative?
Tune in. Drop out. Love polish.

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  1. I love reading about other people's nail care routines! Thanks for sharing ;)

  2. I use acetone for removal as well, especially with glitters. I switched to a non-acetone remover when I was expecting, and oh my lawd, did it take forever! Thanks for sharing your routine with us! :)

  3. OOh great post! I need to try Dazzle Dry!

  4. Love posts like this, great job ;-)

  5. Great post. I love learning what other people use in their routines!

  6. Great post!! I love seeing others routines and how it compares to my own!

  7. Great post! Not only informative, but easy to read & tons of tips :)


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