Hand & Nail Care Basics Part 1 - Mini Manicure Preparation 
My Mum always said that if your hair, hands and shoes were well presented then you could make a good first impression. So with clean shiny shoes and a haircut yesterday (thanks Mum) it's time to sort out my nails and at the moment that's not going to be easy. I've been lacking in the hand and nail care since Christmas and my nails are far from their usual standard so my best option for the moment is short and neat.  
Firstly I need to assess the scale of disaster by removing all traces of nail polish. Before any kind of nail soak I need to apply some serious hydration to my cuticles. My "go to product" for this is "Nourish" from Jessica. This pink cuticle formula nourishes and conditions cuticles. It's great to reduce inflammation and will naturally shrink the cuticle. As is my way, I apply lashings of this around the cuticle area and other areas of dry skin. Now I can enjoy a brief soak in warm water with a little Hand & Body Bath before drying my hands and massaging in remaining "Nourish" then very gently pushing back my cuticles if they need it.  
Shaping and filing is an art form. Consider the shape of you whole nail. Think about how long or short you like them. Take a look at some of the most popular nail shapes. Which do you like and which would suit you?  
I like a Squared Oval or Squoval (at least I do when I have some length!) This shape is quite forgiving in that the straight top and sides keep the strength to the nail whilst the slightly rounded corners make the shape more user friendly. So that decided I file in one direction only, using flexible files and try to make them about the same shape and length. Don't get carried away here and go mad. Be gentle and support your nail while you file.) When I'm happy with the shape I clean the nail plate to remove dust and oils to prepare nails for polish. BASE COAT. ALWAYS WEAR A BASE COAT! 
Next time..... 
Why do I need a base coat and top coat? What home care is essential to look after your hands and nails. Tips on applying nail varnish and make it last. What to do if you chip your polish (after you have said a few naughty words), yes it can be fixed. Find out how next time. If you have any questions or comments do get in touch. I'd love to hear from you. Joanne x 
All products used are from Jessica and are available in salon. They include: 
Nail Polish Remover, Hand & Body Bath, Nourish, Rejuvenation Base Coat. 
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