I’d generally prefer thatÂ a trained spa personÂ tend to my cuticles, but it’s definitely something I can do myself. Try these at-home tips (no pun intended) to get great looking cuticle beds without the manicure cost.
Cuticle Soak: Heat up some water (warm, but not hot) and pour it into a nail soak. You might want to try Gena Manicure CupsÂ – they are disposable and 25 come to a package, so you don’t have to worry about cleaning it out. I actually found the most comfortable container for my hand was the bowl from a Betty Crocker Warm Delight Mini BrowniesÂ – and you get a brownie out of the deal (excellent if you are used to Bliss World manicures with their piles of brownies available during your treatments).
Once you have your warm water, add some oil to moisturize and soften your cuticles. Regular olive oil works great, or you can get creative. Jojoba oil is great, apricot oil is a classic, and Sweet Almond OilÂ smells amazing (and is an amazing moisturizer). With any of these, make it even more therapeutic by popping open a Vitamin E capsuleÂ in the water. You can even use it on it’s own. A little goes a long way with any of the oils, you can always add more if you think you need it later. Once you have your preferred oil medley, swish the water around and slip your fingers in for about 5-10 minutes and relax. And enjoy your brownie with your other hand.
Moisturize: Of course we’ve all heard we should moisturize our hands every time we wash them (I’m a delinquent on that front). But after your nail soak is especially important to moisturize. It’s kind of like when you get out of the bath or shower – you may have used a moisturizing body wash, but your hands still need a slather of moisture after, or else your cuticles may end up drier than before.
So after your delightfully relaxing nail soak, keep your cuticles soft and pliable with a moisturizer. A good cream moisturizer is best – everybody has their favorite.
If you want the best looking cuticles ever, dab on and rub into your cuticles and nail bedsÂ some Liz Earle Naturally Active Skincare Superskin Moisturizer. I first tried this when I was on vacation a few weeks agoÂ and forgot my hand moisturizer – myÂ nails went from pretty gross looking to radiantly healthy in no time flat.
Properly handle hangnails: You shouldn’t hack at your cuticle bed, but nipping off a hangnail is OK. But make sure you have the right tool for the job – using the nail clipper that you use to trim your nails isn’t the most sanitary. Invest in a good Cuticle Nipper – the one from SephoraÂ is excellent – even a butterfingers like me can use it easily.
Give your hands an overnight treat:For everyday cuticle and hand maintenance, use Bliss Glamour Glovesovernight or while watching TV. The gloves have a gel lining that contains olive oil, grapeseed oil (also a good oil for your nail soak – forgot about that one!), and Vitamin E. Just slip them on and let them do the work. 20 minutes will give you a nice moisturizing treatment, overnight will give you an almost miracle. And a winter bonus – they keep you nice and warm, so you can turn down the thermostat down a couple of degrees overnight and still be nice and warm. See? Two money saving tips with one product!
Stay tuned next week for more at-home manicure how-tos!