Ask & You Shall Receive: Extending the life of DIY manicures


Mags e-mailed me during the week to wonder if there's anything she can do to get a bit more lasting out of her at-home paint jobs. Sez she, "I'm using a proper base coat, putting on two thin coats of nail varnish, and then finishing off with a top coat but I'm still only really getting a day out of it!" After Day 1, Mags tells me that her nail varnish starts to chip and flake off which I know is absolutely maddening when you've gone to the trouble of using all the recommended gear.

Well, there is something that Mags can do to get her colour to stay put for longer - it's the only way I've found of making nail varnish last for 5 days on the trot. (I usually start itching to change the colour of my nail varnish on Day 6, so haven't tried to go beyond that!) When you're initially applying the first coat of your colour, very lightly coat the free edge of your nail by gently sweeping the brush across the outer tip so that the colour effectively wraps around it. Do the same when applying your top coat.


The logic behind this method is that chips start where nail varnish ends, so tucking the end under the tip of your nail like this means that if your colour does start to disappear, at least it won't be going AWOL from anywhere you can see it! If you're very hard on your nails, you may find that you really need to touch up the colour along your free edge and re-do your top coat daily to prevent the loss of nail varnish creeping up onto the actual nail plate, but it's a job that literally only takes seconds and is a damn sight handier than having to start from scratch every other day. Best of all, there's no need to go buying any additional products!

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