Even if you're a novice nail painter, these tips will help you get professional results at home without investing in a lot of materials or equipment.
This instructable was one of the sweetest gifts I've ever received from my honey. You can be sure his kindness, patience, and willingness will be repaid!
Step 1: Materials
- Nail polish
- Clear coat nail polish - this will add durability and shine to your paint job. Consider this like the clear coat protective finish to your car.
- Tub large enough to submerge both feet at once
- Plush bath towel
- Bath bubbles or epsom salts
- Pumice stone
- Nail shaping implements - clippers, files, emery boards, orange sticks (cuticle pushers), whatever looks appealing and you feel comfortable using
- Cotton swabs
- Nail polish remover
Optional but awesome:
- Toe spreaders (can usually be found at drug stores)
- Cuticle remover lotion
- Relaxing beverage
- Yummy treats
Step 2: Prepare Toes
- Remove any existing nail polish from nails.
- Using a large nail clipper, cut toenails to desired length.
- Using nail file or emery board, gently shape nails so there are no sharp edges to harm neighboring piggies.
Step 3: Soak
Fill your tub with warm water and a small amount of bubbles or salts.
Lay towel down in front of comfortable chair, and place tub on top
Spread flower petals on surface for extra glam points.
Keep treats nearby.
Relax and soak until the water gets cold!
Step 4: Rub
- Dry your feet with that big plush bath towel. Gently pat - don't rub!
- Use your favorite lotion to restore moisture to your feet and legs. I prefer something unscented, especially if I'm lucky enough to get someone else to do the rubbing for me! He may not want to smell like jasmine and honeysuckle when it's all over.
- Warm lotion in your hands before applying to feet and massaging.
Tip: don't underestimate the benefits of a good leg massage - they work hard too!
Step 5: Exfoliate
- After massage (a good salon usually takes at least 10 minutes on the massage part), apply even more lotion to the soles of the feet. Lubrication is essential to exfoliation. Without it, you could cause serious damage to the skin.
- Use the pumice stone to remove calluses. In a firm but gentle manner, rub the stone over rough spots in a circular motion. I thought this would be uncomfortable, but it's way more pleasurable when someone else does it for you!
- If you have an orange stick or cuticle pusher thing, now's the time to use it. Gently push the cuticles away from the nail bed to expose more of the nail. This makes your toenails look way more elegant.
Step 6: Rinse
- Using nail polish remover and a swab, clean the nail beds to remove any remaining lotion that will inhibit the polish from bonding to the nail
- Refill the tub with warm water and soak feet for a few minutes. Towel dry, paying special attention to drying the nail beds.
Step 7: Paint Those Piggies!
- Lay tissue down under feet to protect surface. I put it down right on top of the towel, which provided extra cushioning.
- Separate toes using separator OR twist up a length of tissue and wind it up and down between toes
- Gently shake the bottle of nail polish to ensure even pigment
- Open the bottle and rub the brush on the inside of the bottle neck to remove any excess polish. This is your enemy.
- Using long strokes, apply the polish to the nails from the cuticle to the tip
- Use two coats of polish for best results. Let paint dry at least 15-20 minutes between coats, OR get some of that quick-dry spray available in some markets.
Step 8: Finish
- Using same method as with color coat, apply top coat in long, even strokes. This step usually only requires one coat.
- Fill cap of polish remover with just a bit of remover - this will prevent potentially major spills
- Dip a cotton swab into the remover and rub away any rogue polish