Maximize your Manicure


I’ve been uncharacteristically lax about having color on my nails in the past couple months (which is changing because of the holidays). Whenever they’re painted, though, I am routinely asked what my secret is to making my polish last.

Do I add a new coat at some point to mask tip wear and chipping?

Do I remove mid-week and re-paint with the same shade to maintain the illusion of longevity?

Have I in fact sold my soul to the devil in exchange for bullet-proof polish?

To all of these things: No.

My secret?

To maximize your manicure, wear gloves when doing dishes and other household cleaning tasks that expose your hands to moisture and harsh cleaning chemicals or soaps. The solution isn’t glamorous but it is effective.

Maximize your Manicure with dish glovesMaximize your manicure by protecting your hands

My favorites are these ones from Playtex Living – I pick them up from Wal-Mart, Amazon, or (curiously, I haven’t been able to find the ones I use at my local Target). These ones are thick and have a drip cuff, so they also protect your arms from splashes. The palms and fingertips are also textured to help you grip slippery dishes.

I find that I need to replace them every 3-4 months or so, usually because I’ve managed to poke a hole through the fingertips with the very nails I’m protecting. They can discolor with time and exposure to say, scrubbing pots that had pasta sauce in them, but they are still effective albeit not pretty.

Aside from that, I keep my cuticles moisturized with a cuticle oil or balm. Lately, I’ve relegated my Josie Maran Argan Oil Light to cuticle duty (I prefer the classic 100% Argan for my face), but I will be looking for something to take its place when it runs out.

Do you have any secrets that help you maximize your manicure, prolong your polish, or lengthen the longevity of your lacquer?

Sorry for all the alliteration; I’m in a mood, today, apparently.