Sassy Friends!

FAQ's/Tips & Tricks

I have been getting a lot of questions lately about my nail care and other related things. I decided, instead of writing out a looooooong email or facebook and blog comment in response every time I'm asked, I would make a page dedicated to all the questions I've gotten. Feel free to leave any questions you may have in the comments section at the bottom of the page and I will respond to is as fast as I can!

Q. Are your nails real?
A. Yes. I'm sure plenty of nail bloggers get this question or the annoying "Those nails HAVE to be FAKE" accusation. So to clear it up my nails are mine, gown by me. No acrylic or press on, just natural nail. You will notice from time to time that my nails get a bit shorter due to a break, and I take pictures from time to time of my naked nails, which can not be mistaken for fake due to how icky yellow they can get. LOL

Q. How do you grow your nails so long?
A. In all honesty I don't do much in terms of making my nails stronger. They are naturally thick, so thick I can't use nail clippers without cracking, and ruining my nail. I will say that since I have started using a mix of  vitamin e and coconut oil on my cuticles nightly, and cuticle balm daily (either Bert's Bees or Hot Mess Cracks Are Wack) my nails seem to chip and crack much less than before. Hardly ever actually. I've also been told that Biotin helps with nail growth as well as hair and a metabolism boost.

Q. What top coat/ base coat do you prefer?

A. It took me a while to find a base coat and top coat that played well together. But I have found 2 base and 2 top coats that I am very loyal to:

Base Coats:
*Sally Hansen Salon Manicure Base Coat- is described as a "gel" like base. I love this because I have very deep ridges in my nails and some polishes will show that if I don't use the proper base coat. This one covers thick but dries fast. The one downside is it gets gloppy after a while, but a couple drops of thinner helps.
*Seche Clear-I got this for free once at Sally's when I purchased a bottle of SV I probably wouldn't have tried it otherwise since I was happy with the Sally Hansen base. But this is a nice base coat, it goes on nice and smooth and also dries quickly, but it doesn't hide my ridges as well. I prefer to use it with my more forgiving polishes.

Top Coats:
*Seche Vite- This is a fast drying top coat, and a nail junkies bff. It does however have an issue with shrinkage so it is best to use this on a fresh mani and not to re-fresh one. I prefer to use it when I am doing my nail art.
*Sally Hansen Mega Shine- Also a fast drying top coat. It promises to dry within 60 seconds and last for up to 10 days. I was a bit skeptical about these claims, especially since it is very thick! But I was surprised, it dries SUPER fast, I can't personally say how long it lasts since I change my polish so often, but I have been told it lives up to the claim.

*Update* I am no longer a loyal SV user. I find that it bubbles too much and requires too much thinner to make it usable. Also it smells awful and the shrinkage is a bitch on most manis. 

Q. Doesn't it take forever for your polish to dry with so much layering?

A. Not at all. I use fast drying top coats. In addition I will use a bit of vitamin e oil and rub it on the cuticle and nail. This will not ruin the mani, just don't rub super hard. Leave the oil on for a min or 2 then wash your hands, I even scrub my fingers around the nail with a brush and it doesn't hurt the polish. I know there are fast drying drops out there but I haven't had the chance to try them out yet. Once I do I will update!

Q. How do you remove glitter?

A. There are 2 ways that you can remove glitter without feeling you're ripping your nail or finger off.

1. The foil method...I take 1 cotton ball and unravel it. Then I cut it into 10 pieces. I soak the cotton pieces in acetone. I place one piece of cotton on my finger nail. I then take a square of foil (that I already have cut-make sure they are large enough) and wrap it around my finger covering the nail/cotton. I repeat until all fingers are covered. Leave this on for about 3-4 minutes. Once it's soaked long enough slide the foil and cotton off with the polish/glitter! This is a great removal and I know some girls use the little rubber finger things (we use to call them finger condoms at the hospital...no I'm not being funny) in place of the foil. This use to be my go to method for glitter removal, but since I don't wear my polish for more than 24 hours (or less) I tend to use the next method.

2. Elmer's glue...I wont go into many details on this because I already did a tutorial on this a little while back...Click here for the post...I will say that this is not meant for those of you who actually wear your polish. As I said, I only keep my polish on for maybe 24 hours, my hubby says I have polish ADD, maybe I do. But this method is great for easy removal of all polish not just glitter, if it's layered it works well. If you have any other questions that haven't been answered by the tutorial please feel free to leave a comment on this post.

*Update...I had a question about why the Elmer's Glue trick may not be working for someone when they use it...here are a few tips I have. I hope this helps.

I find that if you use 2 healthy coats of the glue (making sure to let each coat dry completely) and a good base coat on top of the glue really helps. I went through a trial and error period with it and noticed with 1 coat I had to scratch at it too much and wound up gouging my nail (not good!) 2 coats w/o base coat was ok but it still wasn't just peeling off. I've also noticed the more layers on top of the glue you have the easier it is to just pull off. I use it all the time even on my non glitter manis. (FYI the non glitter manis tend to stick a bit more than the glittered ones.) The drawback is, once you get it to the point that it will peel easily,  it does not last as long as it normally would w/o glue. (not a problem for someone who removes their polish at least once a day or every couple of days. Also, use a cuticle pusher with a rubber end, it doesn't always want to just pop off so the pusher just splits it in half as it lifts the polish from the nail and then you can remove it in 2 pieces. If you still seem to be having a problem try soaking your hands in warm water for a minute or 2, it will make your nails more flexible and loosen the base. I hope this helps.


Q. How do you clean up your mani?

Isn't he cute? =)
A. Pretty simple really. I use an angled eye shadow brush or a crease eye shadow brush and a shot glass for my acetone. Any small, flat  brush will do. There is no need to get fancy especially since you will need to replace that bush after a while. Just make sure the bristles are not synthetic, acetone may eat it! I also have a little nail scrub brush that I use after every mani to get off any stray polish I missed. (for the particularly stubborn colors or messy mani) It's a little panda brush I picked up at the dollar store, in the cosmetics section! What a great find!----->



Q. Do you cut your cuticles?

A. No. I find if I cut my cuticles I will get hang nails. I apply my oil or cuticle balm and once they have softened I push the cuticles back and the excess usually just comes off.
*Update* Blue Cross cuticle remover! It's a god send! I will feature it in a post soon, so keep a lookout for that!


-Cutting vs Filing and types of files I use

I'm a "No Metal" girl. No cutters, no clippers, no metal files. I never cut my nails unless I am doing a major change in length. I always make sure if I do cut (rarely) I leave plenty of nail to file. I find that with my thicker than normal nails I can not clip them without the nail cracking, splitting or eventually peeling. Soaking helps some but the peeling still becomes a problem.Which bring me to my files. I only use glass files. I use to buff and file my nails with the emery board or foam files and occasionally a metal file (O_O yes I know! OMG) but now since I started using glass files my nails do not peel near as much as before. I stopped buffing, no more cracks or splits. I believe this is all due to the use of the glass file. Some people hate them, they can be a pain because it takes longer to file instead of  just cut. The way I see it is glass files last virtually forever with the proper care, they are more sanitary and can be found in many different sizes and colors.

Well that's all I can think of for now. If you have more questions leave a comment!

-Gini




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