How to give yourself a salon quality pedicure at home

Lets face it, often we do not have the time or money to visit the salon for a great pedicure. So here are simply tips to get the same professional look in the comfort of your own home.

(1) Soak your feet in warm water for five minutes. For an extra treat for your tired feet just add some bath salts to the water. Your feet will love it!

(2) Pat your feet dry with a towel. Slough off the dead skin with a foot file. You can find foot files at any drugstore or big box retailer. Use a file with a medium grit to get the best results without damaging your feet.

(3) Trim your nails straight across with a straight edge clipper. You should use three cuts per toe nail. This way you will avoid cutting your nails too short. If you trim your toenails too short you run the risks of developing ingrown toenails.

(4) Then smooth the edges off of your toe nails with a file. Use a fine grit file so you will not damage your nails. You can to find a fine grit file at the same store you purchased your foot file at.

(5) Next rub a cream all over your feet. Its is best to use a foot cream, but in a pinch, a body cream will work. Concentrate on your heels and  cuticles. These areas are driest parts of your feet.

(6) Now its time to prepare your toenails for polishing. Clean your nails with a lint free cotton pad soaked in polish remover. This will remove the oil from your nails, making your color application look perfect.

(7) Then apply a base coat, 2 coats of color, and a top coat. Make sure let the polish dry thoroughly and then your ready to go!

By following these easy steps you will look as though you just stepped out of the salon.

photo credit: Ellen McLawhorn

Essie’s Resort Chic nail polish collection is perfect for the season

New for 2012 Essie has released it Resort Collection nail polishes. This collection is stylish and sensible. You can never go wrong with Essie nail polish. You are sure to wear these colors all through the warm weather months. Lets take a look at this collection:

  1. sure shot– If you like to follow hot fashion trends, get some magenta nail polish. This color is the biggest color trend in nails going on right now. This color will be on manicures and pedicures everywhere this season. It is not for the shrinking violet because everyone is going to notice you with this color.
  2. pink-a-boo – You are sure to love this color. It is a soft pink and all the fashion rage this year. It will be a staple nail polish in your collection. This color looks great with every skin tone. It can be worn for any occasion. It is just a classic color that you will want to wear all the time.
  3. she’s a perfect picture – This is lovely lilac shade. It looks flirty and fun. It will look perfect with warm weather outfits, especially those sundresses. This is a great accessories to have this season.
  4. no more film – This deep violet color is sure to add that needed pop to your outfits this season. Jewel tones are a huge fashion trend right now. So this color will fit right in. You can bet you will see this on many toes this year. It is a beautiful color for a pedicure.

For more information on this collection checkout Essie’s website at http://www.essie.com. You can purchase these colors at any major drugstore chain, beauty retailer and online.

photo credit: essie.com

Essie's Spring Collection

Creative Nail Design’s Shellac manicure

Shellac manicures by Creative Nail Design has been on the market for several years now. This is no trendy manicure system, Shellac is now a established as a mainstay in the beauty business. They recently earned a best in class awards from Ad Age, Nails Magazine, and Nail Pro Magazine. Some of you may have already received a Shellac manicure from your nail technician. So this information will be just a review for you.

The system consists of a color coat, base/top coats, a UV lamp, and polish remover wraps. These products can only be purchased by a licensed manicurist. Be very wary if you come across one of these kits for sale to the general public. More than likely the merchandise is counterfeit or was illegal obtained.

The Shellac products are hypo-allergenic and contain no formaldehyde, toluene or DBP. Unlike acrylic or gel nail systems, these products are actually good for your nails. You will instantly notice that your nails are stronger and your manicures are lasting longer. You can get more information about Shellac online at http://www.cnd.com/Products/Color/shellac-intro.aspx.

There is a helpful link on their website that will aid you in finding a professional in your area that has been trained to use Shellac products. Just be careful once you get a manicure using this system because regular nail polish is not compatible with these products and could ruin your manicure. But your nail technician should make you aware of that when you get your Shellac manicure.

How to paint your fingernails like a professional

So you do not have the time or the money to visit the salon to have your nails polished? Here are easy to follow instructions on how to paint your fingernails at home just like a professional manicurist would in the salon:

  1. Swipe your nails with a acetone polish remover. Use a swab made for nails. A regular cotton ball has lint and could mess up your polish. A acetone polish remover will cut the amount of oil on your nails and help the new polish adhere better.
  2. Apply a single thin clear base coat. This will make the color polish last longer. If you apply a thick layer it will cause the polish to smudge and increase your drying time. Use a base coat that is formaldehyde free because is it better for the health of your fingernails. A base coat will act like double-sided tape by anchoring the polish and creating a barrier for your nails.
  3. Next apply your choice of color polish. Pick a polish that is phthalate free because it will resist chipping. Apply two thin coats of color polish. Always brush forward with one fluid motion when applying the color. Let each layer dry to avoid bubbles in your color. Remember a pale pink shade is the most forgiving. This shade is timeless and ageless.
  4. Now you are ready to apply your topcoat. This will set the color on your nails and add shine to their appearance. Choose a topcoat that has a sunscreen in it to make the color last longer.

A great looking at home nail polish application is very easy to do. Just remember to use a good quality base coat, color, and top coat. This should improve the look and durability of your manicure.

Here are the best places to buy professional grade polish:

Happy polishing!

Red Carpet Manicure is an great alternative for your manicures

With the introduction of Red Carpet Manicure to the retail market now you can get your gel manicures done in the comfort of your own home. If you are familiar with Shellac Nails, this system is very similar. But instead of visit your local salon to get your gel manicure, Red Carpet Manicure products can be purchased via store front retailers and online.

This nail system is not harmful to your natural nails like acrylic or gel enhanced nails. In fact, Red Carpet Manicure products will help strength your natural nails and encourage growth. This manicure will dry instantly and last for weeks. There are now thirty-six shades and they are adding more all the time.

The starter kit from Red Carpet Manicure will run you around $60 and you can buy it at Ulta stores, online at www.ulta.com and www.drugstore.com. The instructions are easy to follow and you can find a how-to video at www.redcarpetmanicure.com.

You can use these products on top of your already enhanced nails. And you can layer different colors from the line to add more dimensions to your manicures. Red Carpet Manicure also offers a French manicure line to give you more choices. Check them out online for more information.

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photo credit: redcarpetmanicure.com

Spring fashion alert: wide leg trousers!

wide leg trouser spring 2012 photo credit: kimberly-lyn via flickr

Silky wide leg trousers are a major fashion trend this season. They are over sized and in many colors, including floral prints. When choosing this style of pants look for ones with inverted pleats because they will slim your legs. Choose fabrics that will flow to make your outfit appear breezy and laid back. The ones that are a silk blend will be the most durable.

Your hem will need to be longer and it should hide most of your shoe. Always wear heels with this look so you do not appear stumpy. Wedges would be a shoe choice for these trousers. They will make your legs look longer and you will appear thinner.

Do not choose a size that appears too baggy because this will make you look heavier than you really are. Pick a medium to high rise, this will emphasize the smallest part of your waist. You will appear to have a hour glass figure. If you want to add more emphasis on your shape just add a belt. When picking a waistband in these trousers go with a drawstring for a more casual look. If you want a more dressy look pick a button fly waistband. These will make the trousers look more fitted to your body.

Wear fitted tops or structured jackets on your top half to offset the fullness in the pants. This will balance your shape and give you a more put together look. Try to avoid looking like the trousers are to large and ill fitting. No one wants to looks frumpy. But with correct fit these pants will become a item that you wear all the time. These trousers will be a great addition to your spring/summer wardrobe.

Spring 2012 nail color trends

Finally, winter is dwindling away and spring is on the way. So it is time to get your fingernails and toenails ready for the new season. Here is what we be popular in spring 2012.

classic red nail polish photo credit: imaxtree.com

(1) The minimalist approach to fingernail color is a big trend. The very flash and elaborate nail colors of last year are now giving way to a more classic look. Nude, cream, and beige will be popular this spring. You will see alot of gray, white, and pale pink. If you choose a color from this pallet keep your nails rounded. This will make your hands seem longer. A great choice from these colors is a creamy beige. It can be worn for day or evening and will give your nails a elegant look with little effort.

(2) What was once old is new again this season. Classic red, burgundy and pastel colors will be very popular. The reds are inspired by the 1950s. Picture the styles of Marilyn Monroe or Grace Kelly and you have captured the trend. If you are going to choose a shade of nail polish from this pallet wear your nails short to medium in length. So not to over power your look by drawing all the attention to your fingernails.

(3) For those of us that like to add a little flash to fingernails, fancy patterns will be popular. Nail Technicians can do amazing things with glitter and a airbrush gun! These fingernails are not just polished, but a work of art. These designs can be tailored to your personal taste, from elaborate designs to the more demure. If you are planning a spring vacation, fancy patterned nails would be perfect for the occasion. Remember fashion should be a expression of your personal style.

(4) Chrome nail colors that make your fingers shine will be popular to. Some have reflective pearly finishes, jockey strips, and half-moons. This style of nail polish is a perfect fit for the fashion forward among us. You will even see geometric checkered manicures these season. This nail art will be a perfect accessories to match the flirty springs fashions.

Enjoy the warmer weather and show off those nails. Its time to get outside and have lots of fun.