Confession time: Even beauty editors suck at doing nails. Between our morning caffeine fix, long to-do lists, and just plain old lack of skill, we’re often left with a paint job that’s anything but professional—and sometimes downright scary. Hence our too-regular mani-pedi addiction, which, let’s be honest, is easy on the eyes but not on the wallet.
So, convinced that we can (and should) step up our nail game, we did some serious digging and rounded up some need-to-know tricks of the trade that will guarantee a prettier paint job. Mani-enhancing tips below!
First things first, a salon-grade manicure requires a steady hand—easier said than done, right? Though some of us are on the shakier side to begin with, at the very least make sure to wait until after you paint to order your double-shot capp. Or better yet, swap out your morning joe for one of these trendy and java-free alternatives.
We know, we know—who has time to apply a base coat, two coats of polish, and then a top coat. Add in the thought of drying time, and usually we throw in the towel. However, if you truly want a compliment-worthy nail job, you shouldn't scrimp on your layering. Say it with us: A good base and topcoat are essential for a non-sucky mani. Both layers will help the polish go on (base coat) and look (topcoat) smoother, all while decreasing the likelihood of chipping. Another tip? Apply a second layer of your topcoat a few days after you’ve painted your nails. It will revamp shine and, once again, discourage any dreaded chipping.