If you’re someone who loves the look and feel of perfectly polished nails, you probably also know the heartbreak that comes with them chipping or breaking. (We certainly do.) The fear of ruining your new manicure might have you wanting to cover your fingertips in bubble wrap or looking for new methods and products to prolong your nail look. We want to help you with the latter.
We spoke with nail experts who shared their tried-and-true methods for maintaining that new set look — even three weeks after your appointment.
Meet the Experts:
- Hemi Park is a California-based nail artist and educator at LeChat Nails.
- Anastasia Totty is a nail artist in Florida and the owner of Artistique Beauty Studio Salon.
- Joseph Cincotta is a cosmetic chemist and adjunct professor of chemistry at Housatonic Community College.
- Miss Pop is a New York City-based editorial nail artist.
The key to a long-lasting manicure starts before a single drop of polish hits your nails. According to nail artist Hemi Park, regardless of the polishes you use, proper prep will set you up for success. The artist, who is also a LeChat educator, recommends lightly buffing the entire surface of your natural nail and using a nail cleanser.
“These steps not only cleanse any oil and residue off the nail, but they also dehydrate them, which can help [polishes] adhere to nail surfaces really well,” she says. We recommend the Ulta Beauty Perfect Match Cleanser for this because of how it sweeps nails clean of debris using isopropyl alcohol.
Brittle nails are prone to chipping and breaking, and experts say that cuticle oil is key to maintaining healthy nails. “It does not matter what type of enhancement you have or if you prefer just a regular nail lacquer — cuticle oil is a must,” says Florida-based nail artist Anastasia Totty.