Quick Nail Polish Tips and Tricks

March 12, 2015
Nail Polish Tips and Tricks

Creating the perfect DIY manicure and pedicure is a lot easier than you think, and will save you some money as well.

We have compiled a list of our personal tips and tricks so you can get a flawless polish each and every time.

RELATED: 5 Quick Ways To Dry Nail Polish

Start on fresh nails

Don’t go moisturising your hands beforehand thinking that this will soften the cuticle. Nail polish applies much evenly on nails which have been freshly washed and properly dried.

If your cuticle or nail bed is rather damaged, apply a nourishing cuticle oil the night before, and this should solve all your problems. Otherwise, the nail polish will just slip and slide all over your nail bed.

One coat at a time

Some lighter polishes are not as opaque and therefore require a few extra layers to achieve a vibrant colour.

While it might feel tempting to layer all your nail polish on at once and hope for the best, this will only result in a thick, blotchy colour. Apply one coat of nail polish at a time, and wait at least 30 minutes before applying another.

Orange stains

If you love red and black nail polish a little too much, then you’re probably familiar with the orange stain it can leave on your nails. You have two options here:

1. Remove all traces of nail polish with an acetone-free remover, and let your nails breathe for a few weeks.

2. Rub half of a lemon onto the nail bed to decrease the orange stain.

Either way, your nails are telling you that they need a break! In the meantime, apply a nourishing cuticle oil every night to improve the state of your nails, and take a break from those darker shades for a while.

Empty polish

If your nail polish is nearing the end of its life, use these tricks to make the most of what you already have.

Put your nail polish in the fridge for 15 minutes, this will smoothen out any clumps, and will ensure an even application. You can also add a tiny splash of acetone into the polish, then shake well and apply onto your nails.


To ensure that your nail polish distributes evenly across the nail bed, start from the middle and swipe in an upwards motion. Go back down to the cuticle, then turn the brush upwards and fill in any gaps on each side. You might also find that this method saves you from dipping your brush into the polish – score!

Dry your nails

There are a few different ways to dry your nails, all of which we’ve mentioned in a previous post. But our favourite has got to be ice water.

Fill a small bowl with cold water and a few ice cubes, then submerge your fingers by rotating every few seconds. Pat dry with a towel, then wait for the water to dry naturally from the nail bed.


Who isn’t guilty of painting outside of the nail bed, especially with darker colours which are more noticeable?!

All you need to do is dip a cotton tip into nail polish remover, and press it over the spot of colour. Don’t swipe or rub it back and forth since it can catch onto the nail bed and completely ruin your manicure.

DIY nail art

If you do want to try an intricate design, use something with a sharp tip such as a toothpick, pin, or even a cuticle stick for a precise dot or line. After each colour, clean with acetone and soak in soapy water so you can use them again.

What are some of your nail polish tricks?

Image via Cosmopolitan

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