Upkeeping my at-home gel manicure after week 1 isn’t hard. Sometimes I really want to switch the color, but then I think of how long it will take to take the polish off and I quickly change my mind.
I usually go through a 60-second hand scrub and reshape my nails. I really love this hand scrub from Bath and Body Works. It has a citrus, fresh scent and leaves my hand smooth. I especially like it when it’s on sale.
Next, I take a fine grit nail file and shape my nails. I have recently been shaping my nails either square or squoval. During my wedding, I had gel tips shaped oval, which I loved, however, I haven’t been able to grow my nails that long, so I haven’t had that shape since.
Lastly, I’ll take my favorite hand lotion at the moment and moisturize. My current favorite hand lotion is eos in berry blossom. The shape of the bottle ensures the cap won’t open and the contents spill all over the place. The lotion also absorbs really well and isn’t greasy.
I recently read an article on shaping nails based on the nail bed shape and size. I think this is a good indicator on what nail shape might look ideal. There are five nail shapes: oval, square, square-oval, round, or pointed.
Oval it Out
The oval shape accentuates a feminine and graceful element on a woman’s hand. The oval shape works with many nail beds, whether you have long or short nail beds. The oval shape is versatile; keep the oval length short or keep it long. The oval also adds length to a nail without compromising the softer curve shape of the nail.
Filin’ It: To make a consistent oval shape, straighten the sides of your nail; make sure they are even. File each side of the nail toward the top in an even, arching motion with the file. Next, file the angles each side of the nail until you meet the oval shape to your liking. The finished oval should have a nice balance between the cuticle shape and the free edge.
Square Bear (Square)
Square nail shapes are usually seen on acrylic nails and quite typically, on the french manicure. Start off by straightening the sides of your nails. Ensure there are two sharp points each side and a slightly C-shaped tip. The Square Bear is however, not ideal for when the natural nail bed is shorter and wider. This is because this shape accentuates the shorter and wider look. The Square Bear is likely to complement the longer nail bed, adding length to the finger.
Filin’ It: A medium-grade file (150 grit) gets the nail into shape fast. Begin with the tip and then the sides of the nails. Turn your hand around and straighten the tip of the nail; make sure the file is completely perpendicular to the nail. File the sides of the nail to acheieve an angle that blends in with the sides of the nail. Apply to the other side of the nail.
The square-oval nail is, yup you guessed it, a bit of both of the square with a little oval-ness to the shape of the nail. If you like the square shape and dislike the the harsh edge, this is your shape. This shape allows the short, wide nail beds to carry the square without looking too augmented.
Filin’ It: File the nail to a square shape. File the sides of the nails are straight, then, applying the file at an angle underneath the corners, file the edges back and forth from under the nail, while moving the file up. This motion takes the corners to a graduated curve.
Filing nails round is professional and you can’t go wrong with this shape, regardless of the characteristics of your nail bed. Round nails soften the characteristics of any hand because it provides a clean and subtle nail outline.This shape is great on men and women, alike. The rounded shape can make your hands look thinner if you have wide nail beds and large hands.
Filin’ It: Start by filing the side of the nails while rounding out the edges into a curved shape. Taking too much off on each side will give the nail an unbalanced look. Visualize making a square, but round the corners with the file at an angle to resolve the desired round shape.
This stiletto pointed shape first gained popularity in Russia. A pointed shape is a little more trendy compared to the other shapes mentioned above. Given the right occasion, the pointed nail creates length and slims out the hand. If you have smaller hands and smaller nail beds, this shape is likely to create length. On the flip side, long, slender hands and nail beds are likely to look more extreme.
Filin’ It: Visualizing a capital letter “I” in the middle of the nail is the best way to start. Create an arch that forms a line running down the nail bed. The “I” in the middle of the nail make sure that the curve to each side forming the point is even. Make sure to blend away to make sure a stiletto shape.
What are some of your favorite nail shapes and how often do you shape your nails?