Gel nails are the latest in manicure trends because they last an impressive two or even three weeks. That said, they’re not for everyone. If you prefer a “classic” manicure, try these tips from Deborah Lippmann, creator of the Deborah Lippmann nail-care line. (Hint: Patience is your friend.)
• Polish needs a smooth surface for the longest-lasting results, so gently buff each nail smooth before you paint it.
• Never skip a base or topcoat, no matter how tempted you are to speed up the process. The base gives the polish something to stick to, and the topcoat seals in the color.
• Let one coat dry for a full two minutes before adding the next. Says Lippmann, “This helps the polish dry properly, which ultimately helps it stay on longer, since you won’t get any bubbling or gloppiness that can lead to chips.”
• As a general rule, let your polish dry for about 10 minutes longer than you think necessary. If you’re really in a pinch try one of these quick-drying techniques.
• To protect the polish and extend the manicure, brush on a clear topcoat, such as Essie No Chips Ahead ($8.50, ulta.com), every other day.