There’s nothing worse than looking down at your freshly manicured nails only to find a chip in the polish the day after (or even the same day) you painted them. If you love a good self-care day featuring nail painting, you need to know these best ways to make your manicure last longer. Don’t let another chipped nail take the wind out of your sails again.

Address Your Cuticles

When you paint over your cuticles, it can break the seal between the nail polish and your natural nail. Before you start your manicure, tackle your cuticles. If you don’t have a cuticle softener at home, you can soak your hands in warm water, which will soften your cuticles naturally for cutting or pushing back. Whatever your method, make sure you have a nice, clean canvas on which you can properly apply your nail polish.

Use a Base & Topcoat

Some nail aficionados may not know that you can extend the life of your manicure with both a base coat and topcoat. A base coat gives the polish an extra layer to stick and adhere to, while the topcoat seals it all in. Add an extra layer of topcoat every couple of days when you notice your nails are looking a bit duller. If you notice chips in your nail polish as well, make sure to tackle these as soon as you can. Touch up the polish and add a topcoat before the chip can peel any further.

Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize

If you want your manicure to last for as long as possible, moisturize your hands and nails daily. Your nails can break and split more easily when dry, so use nail oil or cuticle oil nightly to restore the moisture your nails have lost during the day. Add one of these methods into your nightly routine; you’ll surely notice a change in your manicure’s appearance and the health of your nails. You should also keep your hands moisturized with lotion to prevent hangnails and cracks.

Try out these best ways to make your manicure last longer the next time you paint your nails at home. After all, if you go through the work of perfectly sculpting and artistically painting your nails, you want them to last for as long as possible.

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