Are your Lockdown Nails looking decidedly skanky?
Tempted to rip off your acrylics?
Have 7 of your gel nails pinged off…and you have no idea where!
Worry ye not.
Life can, and will go on, without perfect shiny falsies.
In fact, nails throughout the world are breathing a sigh of relief at the prospect of having a break from constantly being smothered by gel and acrylic. And given that we’ve all developed OCD Hand Washing Compulsion, our dried-out hands will also benefit from a little bit of lovin’.
Lockdown is the perfect opportunity to get your nails in to great condition ready for Unlockdown – when we can, once again, meet up and hug family and friends – and show them our lovely nails, and go to the pub, and out for a meal, and a walk on the beach, and book a holiday, and buy a couple of bottles of wine without fear of arrest, and stop continually worrying about death and bankruptcy and…sorry I digress.
So, what makes you such a girly swot, nail-y know all, I hear you mumble.
Well actually, I’m not. My nails are really rather average – if my nails were a Kardashian they would be the short one, but having given up gel nails last year (read all about it here it’ll pass another 5 minutes) I am living proof that giving your nails a break and some TLC really does work and is rather satisfying (and will pass some time in these 43-hours days we are living through)
Top Tips for…Gorgeous Lockdown Nails
Let nature take its course
If you had a gel or acrylic manicure before Lockdown and are sitting right now looking down at a handful of minging mismatched nails RESIST the temptation to rip them off. Ok, it might give you 3 seconds of satisfaction, but your nails will cry themselves to sleep.
Instead show them some love by applying nail oil and hand cream ALL THE TIME.
Get Your Kit Together
Not many of us have a fully equipment Nail Bar at home- but in these days of Make Do and Mend we can improvise, my darling, and pull together our own little home manicure station.
What you need
Surely you must have some of that kicking about the house, or the car, or that what about in that stash of Christmas pressies that you are planning to re-gift.
If not Body cream or face cream samples will do just fine.
If you have some proper Nail / Cuticle Oil then good for you smarty pants.
If not, make your own by adding a few drops of Essential Oil (lavender, geranium, lemon would all work well) to oil. Almond oil is best but you could use olive oil. Alternatively any beauty oil you have kicking should be fine.
Ideally you will have one of those nail buffers with 4 sides that smooth and polish your nails. If not an old duster or shammy will do.
Anything Else Nail-Related You Have At The Back Of Your Drawers
A nail file, nail strengthener, a clear polish, a cuticle pusher (or a bit of cotton wool wrapped around one of those wooden nail sticks) would all be useful.
I have a pair of Warming Manicure Mittens similar to these. They are such a treat to use. I apply nail oil, and cover hands in hand cream shove them in to 2 freezer bags then in to the warmed mittens and relax (and try not to the think about the end of the world)
Once your nails are back to their natural state keep them polish-free for at least one week and then, going forward at least 75% of the time.
After the first week you might want to put on a base coat, or, if you’ve got an exciting event coming up (an essential shop in Sainsbury’s or a visit to the pharmacy) then you might want paint your nails for the occasion.
Constantly – apply oil and hand cream.
Every 3 days – soak your hands in a bowl of lukewarm water with freshly squeezed lemon juice. This makes them brighter.
Once a week – give yourself a manicure. Push back cuticles. File Nails. Apply base coat with or without coloured polish and top coat if you have it, and then apply hand cream and nail oil.
After a week or two of TLC marvel at how fabulous your natural nails look.
Psssst…. I had a dream where I was standing between (safe distance) the Prime Minister and the Chief Medical Officer at one of the Downing Street Press Daily Press Briefings sharing my expertise on Lockdown Nails….so I’ve had my People write to the PM’s People offering my services.
I’ve not heard back yet…but I expect to any day now.
For randomness & unsolicited advice sign up for Regular Updates (above right)
You’ll also find me on…