Scottish Daily Mail
Nail the perfect polish
THERE’S nothing quite like discovering a fabulous nail colour that suits your skin tone and lifts your mood — especially if you experiment. British women spend up to £450 a year on their nails. But as manicure devotees know, preparation is as important as polish. With that in mind, I put your nail concerns to the experts . . .
ELONGATE SHORT NAILS
Q: I have short nails that never seem to grow. What can I do to make them look more presentable? BEYONCE’S MANICURIST AND CIATE BRAND AMBASSADOR REBECCA WILSON SAYS: I would recommend darker colours on shorter nails, from rich red all the way through to black. A deep, glossy shade will make them look glamorous. If you want to grow your nails, a cuticle oil is key for daily use, along with a strengthener to stop splitting. ELSA SAYS: Nu Nail Strengthening Cream (£3.60, Boots) will condition cuticles. And Ciate Nail Gym (£12, ciatelondon.com) is an intensive treatment with advanced oxygen technology that will strengthen your nails.
BE BRAVE WITH NAIL ART
Q: I’m 59 and would really like to try nail tattoos or stickers — where do I start? LYNN GRAY, FROM MAVALA, SAYS: At this time of year, start with a red or a deep burgundy shade all over the nail. Then layer a contrasting glitter nail polish over the top, creating a gradient by building up layers of glitter closer to the nail tip. ELSA SAYS: Nail stickers are also great — Kiko Milano nail stickers (£2.90, kikocosmetics.co.uk) are good value and easy to apply.
POLISH FOR PALE SKIN
Q: What is the best shade of nail polish for pale skin? I find some colours draining in winter. ANNETTE CLOSE, NAIL EXPERT AT MICRO CELL, SAYS: Bright colours work well for pale skin. Pick out four shades and hold each bottle upside down in between your fingers. Pick the one that adds the most warmth to your skin. A shade with blue tones risks making your skin look dull. ELSA SAYS: YSL has launched four beautiful shades to match its iconic Rouge Pur Couture. La Laque Couture in Le Orange Mat (£19, yslbeauty.co.uk) is a stunning orangey-red.
Q: I do my own manicures and spend ages getting the polish perfect, but it chips the next day. How can I make it last? IT IS a three-step process — start with a good base coat, apply two coats of hard-wearing polish and finish it off with a protective topcoat. SONIA HULLY FOUNDER AND CEO OF NAILBERRY SAYS: I would always recommend a base coat with a white tint to it, so the colour of the lacquer grips to the base coat and really stands out when applied.
You must also prep your nails well. Use polish remover even if you’re not wearing any varnish to remove traces of oil.
Then apply thin coats of base coat, polish and top coat. The thinner the manicure, the longer it lasts.
Re-apply a top coat every two or three days. ELSA SAYS: I love gel top coats, as they give a salon-finish shine and protect nails best. Revlon ColorStay Envy Diamond Top Coat (£6.99, Boots) is fabulous.
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