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Thursday, 9 February 2012

Winter nails

Today's post it dedicated to one of my favourite evening-couch activities: manicures! When it comes to nails I'm really high maintenance: pretty, well kept hands is something I always notice on people and I can't get by if mine are not up to standard. I'm always in search of the perfect manicurist and I've become more and more sophisticated in nail DIY. My tools+polishes vanity case has grown dramatically. I have summer and winter colours and have tried every possible hand cream, oil, treatment you can imagine.  Here I am with the uber-knowledgable Ashleigh our very own Beauty Assistant at Red talking about nails, see her amazing tips below, my can't-live-without essentials and the step-by-step regime I stick too.

  • Soak
  • nails in warm water
  • Rub oil on nail
  • Push down cuticules with oil pen
  • Cut or trim dead skin
  • Rest your hands in gloves slathered with hand cream and oil
  • Wash your hands and use a scrub
  • Clean nails with cotton wool soaked in nail varnish remover
  • Apply coat 1
  • Apply coat 2
  • Apply Top coat
  • Wait 5 min then apply quick dry drops and a splash of oil

1. Top Shop Nails in Gypsy Night £6.00
I love this jet black polish with a little sparkle injection!
Grey nails are perfect in the winter, I prefer lighter chalky shades like this rich Rococo one
3. Essie Chinchilly (grey) and Pouf Daddy (red)£9.50
These are my two favourite Essie reds and in the winter I alternate between the two (great for toes too)
4. Dr Hauschka Neem Nail Oil 30ml £24.95
I literally soak my nails in oil before pushing cuticles and then leave it on for added nail nutrition before putting on nail varnish
5. Cow Pat Manicure Maintenance Kit  For soft sumptuous pretty hands and nails £19.50 
I love getting manicures at the Cowshed spa in London and this cute set has all you need to do it yourself at home in front of the TV. great little gift too under £20
6.  J.Crew FACE Stockholm® nail polish
This is the colour of the season as seen on the J.Crew models in the catalogues. Who says pink is a summer shade only?
7. Bliss 'mend' a hand £30
I wore these gloves slathered in cream the day before my wedding and my hands were so soft the next day. I just love any excuse for a bit of pampering and Bliss knows how to deliver!

8. MAVALA Mavapen Nutritive Oil for Cuticles, 4.5ml £9
I prefer to push down my cuticules with a oil pen rather than a metal tool- it's gentler and moisturising at the same time

9. John Lewis Cuticle Trimmers £7.50
These are my essential tool to cut cuticles and  hard skin. Always wash and dry after each use and they will last forever

My favourite hand scrub
Kiehl's Gentle Exfoliating Grapefruit Body Scrub, 200ml £22.50


Never skip base coat – it will make your polish last so much longer and protects colour from staining your nails. We love Orly's Bonder. http://www.boots.com/en/Orly-Bonder-Nail-Polish_1190742/?CAWELAID=784424801&cm_mmc=Shopping%20Engines-_-Google%20Base-_---_-Orly%20Bonder%20Nail%20Polish 

Model's Own have an amazing selection of colours, from nudes to neons to special effects, and go days without chipping. http://www.modelsownit.com

For a super-speedy mani, use Chanel's Mat Top Coat on bare nails for an instantly clean and buffed finish. http://www.boots.com/en/CHANEL-BEAUTE-DES-ONGLES-Mat-Top-Coat-13ml_1234410

For non-toxic polishes, we love Butter London (http://www.butterlondon.com/), Zoya (http://www.zoyapolish.com/) and OPI (http://www.lenawhite.co.uk/). 

Make cuticle oil part of your nightly bedtime routine for healthy nails. There are loads out there, Leighton Denny's is a Red favourite. http://www.lookfantastic.com/leighton-denny-slick-tips-nail-cuticle-oil-12ml/10560268.html 


Lonely Greenshoe said...

You're right, women hands have to be always perfect...My routine is pretty similar to yours but here in Milan is quite hard for me to find good hand and foot spa near the office....I guess in London they're much more easy to finnd...

Girlinapanama said...

I too like to have really nice looking nails and always think the condition of them gives a lot away about the person whether your male or female.

Brilliant post and tips, thank you for sharing!!

Esther xx


Pavneet Khurana said...

Nothing like a lick of polish to brighten up winter mornings. Also loving the grapefruit scrub..!

Anonymous said...

Fab posts this week Laura!

Bit confused about the Essie nail polishes you recommend - you talk about 2 reds and have a pic of 2 reds, but your description and link is to one red (pouf daddy) and Chincilly which is a grey.....can you tell us what the other red in the picture is?

Many thanks!
Absolutely live for your blog - bought the cashmere polo from Uniqlo and wore it yesterday - sooo warm!

WIT said...

Ups! girls you are right there is a mistake in the link to the Essie polish: the other Red is FISHNET STOCKING! xx

anto said...

my 2nd and 3d nail on both hands (why only those ones?) tend to crack during winter time-I therefore must keep all very short: what can I do?.....

Style Souk said...

I recently had a beautiful manicure with OPI's 'Colour So Hot it Berns' - you'd love this red, Laura! - but, generally, my favourite colours are Chanel.

I'm wearing 'April' at the moment and it's just the prettiest raspberry.

Sarah x


Anonymous said...

thanks Laura for clarifying this colour! I have so many nail polishes that you have recommended! xx

moodeve said...

I love this post! I agree with you re self done manicures - it's some 'me time' - and my ritual is on a Sunday night. I use Jurlique almond oil as my cuticle oil. So nourishing. Gonna check out that Essie red and also the Orly bonder! Thanks for this!

Veebers said...

Have you girls ever tried Revlon's 'Facets of Fuschia'? Very bling, sparkly, so special for a great night out...and a dark fushia so it's not too 'pretty'. Its like a vampy glitter! Parfait! x

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