Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Readers' Corner: Applying Nail Polish the Right Way

I've been applying nail polish for decades!  That's not a joke!  So applying nail polish is like breathing for me!  *laughs*  Thanks to my wonderful readers for pulling my feet back on earth!  There are indeed some readers who are not used to applying nail polish on both hands, how dare I force you to do nail art right?  I'm sorry I haven't really thought about it and this time, I am dedicating this post for the readers who requested for tips on how to apply nail polish on your own! :)

First things first, you've forgiven me right?  Pretty please?  *BIG SMILE* :D

Okay, forgiven or not, let me proceed with my simplest Nail Polish Application Technique, after this post, I hope you get to learn something :)  To those who are already experts..what are you doing here? :P  Well, thanks for reading still and you can just enjoy my gorgeously "ugly" nails! :P

Step # 1
Make sure your polish is not dry and the consistency is just right.  Lift the brush just like photo below...

And wipe one side of the brush against the bottle,  leaving one side of the brush with nail polish.

Step # 2
Brush the "wet side" of the brush through the center of your nail from base to the tip.  Try not to touch the brush on the cuticle area, but if you did, do not panic, you can always clean it up after!

Step # 3
Continue to pick up more polish using the same technique on Step # 1, do the same stroke on the other side.

Then the last part that wasn't covered with polish.  At this point, your nails are covered with polish.  You can try to clean off excess with a tool or just leave it as it is and clean it up later.  You are done with the first coat.

Repeat the same steps when first coat gets dry!

Easy right?  But how come you're doing the right steps above but still comes up with a not so smooth polish application?  Or worst, bubbles showing up when polish gets dried?  There are several tricks and tips I'll share with you!

  • Before you start using the polish, do not shake the nail polish like you hate it!  It will create bubbles, try to roll the polish between the palm of your hands to "warm" the polish instead for a smoother application.
  • Always remove old polish prior to new polish application.  Make sure there are no old polish residues at all!  Especially on the cuticle area.
  • Wash your hands prior to polish application, making sure your nails are free from lotions or creams.  
  • Aside from protecting your nails, using a Base Coat of your choice creates a smoother surface.  Think of a face primer for the skin, base coat acts as a primer for your nails!  *ahhh, that was a smart one right?* *LOL*
  • Never apply polish in front of an electric fan, it helps you dry up your polish faster --- YES, that's true, and helps your polish appear bubbly too!  If that's your thing, go ahead :P
  • Each stroke should be done once, do not pile on polish while polish is still wet!  It will create uneven coats!
  • Apply second coat of polish ONLY when the first coat is dry!
  • If you are not ambidextrous, just like myself, and found yourself having a hard time applying nail polish using your left hand, here's a huge tip I can share, hold the brush steadily with your left hand, then move your fingernails on the right hand instead!  It's quicker that way! A photo below to show how I move my fingers instead of the brush!
  • Last but not the least, there's a reason why the brush holder is made that way, it is for you to use it wisely!  Hold your nail polish brush the way I did on photo below for a steadier application.  It makes a whole lot of difference...trust me on that! :)
You hold the nail polish brush cap with both your thumb and forefinger, the forefinger prevents the brush handle from moving around while the thumb is used to control the movement of the brush.  Yes, there is a choreography in nail polish application!  *winks*

I'm sure the tips above are old and a lot of you probably knew about it since first grade!  *laughs* It's nice to be reminded at times and it's nice to feel like a teacher all over again! :)

I hope these simple, yet effective tips help the nail polish enthusiasts and soon-to-be addicts out there!
Have a lovely day!
Keep smilin'
Stay happy!


  1. This is so helpful Nikki! My polishes are always wonky when applied. Hehe. Good thing you show a photo with TFS one since I use that. Thanks!

  2. Thanks sooo much for this tutorial!! I suck at applying polish so this is definitely helpful for me!! :D

    I want you to do my nails!! I want the Sesame Street one!! Hehehe!! :D

  3. sis since when did you become a fanatic in nail stuff? :)
    totally cool :D

  4. OMG!!..Thank you so much for the tips..It helps me a lot..I always having trouble apply my nail polish on my left hand because I'm a right-handed..Lol.. Now I know the right technique to apply nail polish..Thanks once again hun for the tips..Really appreciate it..

    Happy Tuesday to you..^_^..

  5. thanks for the tips ate!!
    I am happy because I am doing the right way. . =]


  6. cool.. theres one more thing on applying the polish.. by means of WRAPPING IT.. When applying polish, sweep a bit of polish across the edge and under the nail tip.. this could help to make ur mani last and easily wont chip on the nail tips..
    thanks for sharing this... can I share this post on my nail art group on FB? xoxo

  7. Justine, glad I posted the TFS polish :)

    Jenn, I'll do your nails when we finally meet in person! :P

    Christine, hmm...highschool? And it's a decade ago!

  8. AnGiePink, glad to be of help! I'm sure there are more tips out there and everyone's welcome to write more tips!

    Merchamren, thanks for visiting

    ThRiSzHa, of course its ok, go ahead and share! I do the Wrapping thing too and I use the Top coat and nail polish lasts longer, forgot to include in on the TIP section, thanks for the reminder

  9. Thanks for the great tip! Practice made perfect too. I still fail at applying nail polish anyway. :P

  10. Nikki! I miss you. Haha (as if I haven't talked to you in ages), *hugs*. Thank you for your uplifting comments, you are always so sweet. I feel like I have known you for years and you always know how to brighten anyone's day. Just thought id tell you that. :)

    And yes, you need to move to Cali so we can get you a nice tree LOL. And we can go shopping!

  11. you did my request! :D thanks nikki, you're the best! you make it look so easy though; i need a lot of practice but it's comforting to know you're not ambidextrous pala (i thought it was just me).

    and now, just waiting for the photography tips you have to force, oops, coax Mr AMW to share. hehe!

  12. Thank you so much for this tutorial! I have just started getting into nail polish so this is very helpful for me!

  13. Hi amw. I love your nail posts however some of the art is a bit too wild for me to rock at the office lol. Do you have a tutoral for basic white french tips?

  14. I never thought about holding the brush like that. I must give it a try. Thanks for the tips :)

  15. This post is great!
    Time to be more confident with doing my nails after this simple lecture. :)

  16. thanks for the tips!!i love applying my own nail polish,now i know how to hold the nail polish brush in a correct way!merry Christmas=)<3

  17. Thank you so much! I never seemed to get my polish right, but the technique is so simple (when you know it...)

  18. Thanks for the tips. And I always wonder why bubbles form and make my nails feel like craters on the moon.

    Will apply these tips the next time I play with nail polishes.

  19. Sue, awww I'm sure it takes time and you'll be alright !

    Nessa! awww, Thanks also for commenting and for making me smile! It does seem that I've known you for years and it's true! I think more than 2 years now? I was emailing you about those MAC thing 2008 or something! Hope you'll come back the Philippines and we have to see each other!

    Isea, I am definitely NOT and I'm glad this helps and lifted you up a bit to keep on practicing! hahaha Photography tips may take time, hahahaha I do know a couple tricks c/o Mr. AMW but I have to let him sit and interview him more!

  20. Gio, I'm glad to be of service dear! thanks for always making me smile with you nice and sweet comments!

    Rosely, yes, I do have a lot of simple tutorials, you can click this link to browse on those that you think would be ok for Office :)

    rmcandlelight , you're very much welcome!

  21. Angie, yes, be confident, that's very important in both makeup and nail polish application!

    Miss Purple, thanks dear! merry Christmas too!

    Bourriquette , I'm glad you found this helpful!

    Vonvon, bubbles forming? Oh my, that means the polish has air on it! So do not forget not to shake the polish and do not apply polish in front of fan!


I'd love to hear from you! Feel free to comment your questions, suggestions and just anything you may want to say! Keep smiling and stay happy!