Stepping out with a fresh pedicure is one of summer's biggest beauty highs. Realizing you've scuffed, chipped, or otherwise mangled it two days later? Not as fun. Avoid heartache with these expert tips for making yours last longer.
#1. Cap It Off
"Ask the nail professional to coat the very ends of the toenails each time a new coat is applied," instructs CND Nail and Fashion Expert, Candice Manacchio. "By capping the free edge, it'll help the paint job last longer."
#2. Just Wait
In an ideal world, though, you'd wait longer than the customary fifteen minutes before slipping out the door. "Even though the polish might seem dry, it actually takes hours for all of the different layers to dry," says Bliss esthetician, Carol Jo Pisciotta. "The topcoat is usually quick-drying, but the polish itself isn't. When everything dries and cures the right amount of time, it'll last longer." Pencil in your appointment as time to relax, and try to luxuriate while waiting by diving into a good book. Or a seriously juicy copy of Us Weekly.
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#3.Take a Break
We all know not to slip on running shoes and go out for a jog right after a pedicure, but staying clear of the sauna? "Avoid the beach, hot yoga, and other activities with extreme temperatures or textures that could be damaging for at least six hours after your appointment," suggests Jane Park, CEO of Seattle-based nail company Julep. "It really takes a lot longer to dry than you think!"
#4. Get Oily
"Use cuticle oil daily to keep your pedicure looking fresh," reminds Park. Along with helping your paint job last longer, it'll maintain that fresh-from-the-salon feeling since dry skin is a tell-tale sign of neglect. We're obsessed with this roller-ball version, making application mess-free. Park admits that she keeps a bottle out on her desk and swipes it on throughout the day.
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#5. Top It Off
Invest in your own bottle of high-quality topcoat. "Applying a coat once a week can really extend the life of the polish," says Pisciotta. "Make sure you seal all corners and edges, including the tips." In summer sandals , toes are exposed to everything and can really take a beating. Keep 'em protected for a professional finish.
#6. S.O.S. Skill
And what to do if you get home and notice that you picked up a nick somewhere from the pedi chair to your couch (grr!)? "Dip your index finger in polish remover and softly touch the smudged spot, to even out the surface," suggests Pisciotta. "Let it dry, touch it up with the same color, and finish with topcoat."
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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.