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  • Writer's pictureKali

Manicure at home, how to + do's and don'ts



Woman paining her own nails

Last February I was honoured to collaborate in an Article by Katrin Roth in her Sonrisa.ch web page. I felt lucky to be featured next to other great minds and talents in the Swiss Nail Industry.

To read her full recollection of great tips and ideas in German, visit this link, below I present you my part of the conversation in English.


How to do a Manicure at home, tips, tricks and things to avoid. By Karla Bumann (Kali)

  • Begin by washing your hands with a soft soap

  • In order to soften your cuticles, apply a generous amount of cuticle oil and with the help of a cuticle wooden stick pushback your cuticles gently and carefully.

  • Cuticles. We recommend not to cut your cuticles yourself to avoid accidents, instead clip only if you have a visible hang nail and for the rest, use a buffer on that part of the skin to soften it. We don’t want to get rid of cuticles by cutting them, that would only make them thicker, we want to soften them so they don’t get on the way.

  • Length. To get the desired nail length we recommend using a hand file instead of nail clippers unless you must trim from long to short.

  • Nail shaping. *Tip*To determine your natural and ideal nail shape,look at the free edge of the nail, if its naturally round, you should do either round, almond or squoval. If it is straight, then your ideal shape is squoval or square.

  • Buffing. Use a buffer to smooth out any ridges on the nail surface and to the free edge, but please be gentle and don’t over buff, you only want to smooth the nail.

  • This is a good time to wash your hands again to remove any dust remains.

  • Exfoliation. We recommend exfoliating your hands, not more than twice a week. We also recommend to use a sugar based peeling as this will be gentle with your skin.

  • Rinse thoroughly to remove any peeling residues and if available, use a nail brush around cuticle area for better results.

  • Apply cuticle oil to your cuticles being careful not to soak your nails with it.

Before applying nail polish here are some tips: -

*Tip* use a Q-tip soaked in Vaseline or thick body butter and carefully apply it to the cuticle area, this will make polish application and cleaning way easier.

*Tip* soak a different Q-tip in acetone to be ready at any time to clean up any painting mistakes

*Tip* Allow each nail polish coat to dry before applying the next one. At least 5-10 min between coats. I know this is not ideal, but this helps against smudging once you’ve finished your manicure.


  • Color. Apply base coat to your nails in order to protect them and help your polish last longer. If you have ridges on your nails, you can do 2 coats of regular base coat or get a special base coat for it.

  • Apply two thin coats of your chosen nail polish.

  • Finish with a top coat to seal and add shine.

  • Moisturizing. Once dry, apply to your hands a lotion or cream and to your cuticles, a vitamin infused oil.

I hope you find this article helpful, if you have any questions or suggestions for the next post, please DM us with requests :)

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