The Answer is in the Clean Up

How often have you sat down with the goal to create a gorgeous manicure or at the very least a nice polish paint job.  But for various reasons, either you had too much caffeine, your in a rush, you have a toddler hanging off your leg, or you just need practice you end up with this…

No one likes unsightly flooded and messy cuticles.  So, why is it everyone else can manage nice neat paint jobs and how can you get the same results?  Well the obvious answer is practice your painting skills, take your time, and be patient.  However, who has time to paint and re‐paint there nails.  Here is a tip for all of my fellow Plebes out there (some of you may be aware of this already), the key to neat cuticles is all in the clean up.

There are several methods and tools you can use to clean up your cuticles and you can employ all of them or a few of them while painting your nails.  One very common method of cuticle clean up is to use one of your finger nails to scrap the excess polish off your skin while it is still wet.

However, you may not want to use your nail if it is already polished.  Why ruin a perfectly polished nail?  Another option is to use a toothpick and run it along your cuticle line.  I employ this technique often.  It works just as affectively as using your nail without getting polish all over your perfect paint.

If the polish has already dried scraping it off may no longer be an option.  If this is the case you could use a q‐tip dipped in acetone or nail polish remover to clean your cuticles.  There are two typical types of q‐tips, the standard kind and the precision type.  However, I don't care for q‐tips because they are bulky and you can just as easily ruin your paint job.  I find that they are more useful for spot cleaning polish from various parts of your finger further from your nail or cuticle.

My most favorite method of cuticle clean up it to use a brush dipped in acetone.  I use an eyebrow brush from a set of cosmetic brush I own.  (I use it a lot which is evident by how stained it is.)  You can also use a paint brush if you'd like.  Whatever brush you choose to use I would recommend it have slightly stiff bristles.  I prefer the eyebrow brush because it is stiff but also because there is a slight angle to the bristles which makes it conform to my nail and cuticle area a little better.  Another tip is that if you don't have one of those fancy pump bottles for your remover use the cap of your bottle as a bowl.  This makes it easier to dip the brush versus trying to dip it in the bottle.  Plus it allows you to keep dirty acetone from muddying up your supply.

So, instead of hiding your less then superior paint job, clean up your act and show it off using these methods.  I hope you found these tip useful in your polishing endeavors, so keep on painting on.  See you next time.

Your Fellow Plebe,