There’s nothing more annoying than spending your time and money on a manicure, only to have the nail polish chip or peel after just a few days. Learn the tricks of how to make your manicure last longer
Swipe clean nails with a cotton ball soaked in nail-polish remover. ‘Greasiness from lotion prevents polish from adhering,’ says spa owner Jin Soon Choi. Pure acetone removes most residue, but if it’s too drying, try a non-acetone remover without hydrators such as lanolin.
Not all clear polishes are alike: a base coat is soft and sticky, so it can expand and contract with your nails and grab colour, says Jan Arnold, cofounder of Creative Nail Design (CND). A topcoat is formulated to be hard and shiny; if you put one under your colour, you’ll short-change your manicure.
Steer clear of quick-drying top coats: what you gain in speed, you lose in protection, says Arnold. A regular top coat is thick and slow to dry, but lasts longer and is more lustrous than thinner, fast-acting ones. Save the quick-drying product for a touch-up three days after you’ve painted your nails.
Tip: Oil helps keep polish from chipping and nails from peeling. Rub a few drops of oil like Mavala Cuticle Oil Daily Cuticle Treatment (R118,95) on your nails before bed.