Nail Care Part One

Hi everyone!

I defended my thesis a couple of weeks ago… Finally! I can actually breathe now. It was looming since graduation, but I am happy I presented and its over with now. I am now working part time in IT at my former university, helping my hubby with a few bits, and devoting myself to the blog and its wonderful readers. I really enjoy writing and sharing my opinions and experiences, as well as discovering other people’s experiences. :)

My mom and I went to a local nail salon this past weekend for some mani-pedi relaxation, it was my mom’s birthday weekend. I got compliments on my feet and my nails, so I thought it would be good to share my routine. I don’t do that much, but I guess the little things make the difference.

I want to do a two part nail care series since I’ve began this post, I kind slacked off on the maintenance of my nails and have two broken nails (one on each hand). I’ve also been reading a beauty book from the 1950s and really enjoyed the description of the nail routines. So stay tuned for the how to mani from the mid-20th century, later this week!

vintage cat nails



I love going to the nail salon! The ones near me vary in prices, but I usually pay around $15 for a mani/pedi, without tip. I thinks its much more reasonable than some places that charge double that. I can’t imagine what they could be doing differently.

The salon is nice because someone else is doing all the work and you’re relaxing. You can bring your own varnish is you don’t like the selection, and they somehow apply the varnish so well, it seems like you can do it yourself.

One problem with salons, is they are public, and nail fungi exist, among other nail problems. Not to mention all the chemicals that are around, since some people are getting acrylic nails.

Another thing about salons also is the potential wait, even if you make an appointment. That’s why I go every once in a while, but boy do they know how to make the cuticle area look perfect!


If you google it, you can can do a salon quality paint job yourself. Here’s a schematic I found, which actually works. You can find more info HERE. I think its one of the best ones, since it shows a picture and has written directions as well.



The problem with painting your own nails, which most people find difficult, is painting the hand you write with. If you are ambidextrous, lucky! Otherwise one hand will look fab, while the other is like the ugly stepsister. I recommend practicing, and don’t be afraid of making a mistake. One thing I always learner, if you make a mistake, there’s always cotton swabs and nail polish remover (I always get nail polish on my cuticle area).


Some of like their nails: short, clean, neutral. Others, especially us pin up and vintage lovers, like the nails: grown out, shaped according to preference, and painted red! I love the almond shape, and as you’ll see later, I have loads of nail varnishes!

I don’t pick my nail cuticle are anymore, and since it’s summer, I hardly ever get dry hands, but the #1 thing I think we forget is our hands. We moisturize the body and the face, but what about our hands? For women, we age on our hands first, just look at Madonna… You can’t wear gloves all the time. Moisturizing the hands is easy, but finding a non-greasy moisturizer, I found a bit tougher.

My dad’s friend went to Israel, and my dad watched his cats (lolz) and as a little present, his wife picked out this Premier by Dead Sea Premier Luxury Collection Hand Cream, for my mom. I LOVE IT. So I ended up keeping it, my mom kept the other things. This cream absorbs wonderfully, and your hands do feel like silk, and smell of a mild sweetness.


While in the UK over winter, I discovered Kath Kidston. I love the vintage inspired things her collection has, and my favourite scent is rose, so when I saw this hand cream, I had to have it. Its free of parabens, sulfates and colors, which is great, it smells very lovely, if you like the scent of a rose, it’s perfect.


One thing to look for in a good hand cream is definitely the creams ability to absorb. If it makes your hands sticky or too creamy, its no good (especially in the summer!) One alternative to moisturizing, especially in the summer, is a spay tonic. I found this rosewater facial spray, which is a nice way to keep not only the hands and feet soft, but your whole body. I will be looking in to a more pure version of this face spray, since it has some ingredients that are not natural. But any other rose water or witch hazel type sprays will do the job. (L’Occitane has one).

Growing Your Nails

Though my nails are in a good state now, they haven’t always been. When I was in High School, I was really in to the acrylic nails. They are definitely not great for your health and they really mess up your nails.



I’ve had short nails up until this spring, until I found a great nail hardner by Sally Hansen (Hard as Nails). I use it alone as well as a basecoat and its been good to me.


Nail Polishes

I love getting nail polishes! That’s why my collection is ever growing. I do want to look in to ones that have less chemicals and still have a good variety of colors. But so far here’s my crazy polish collection:







IMG_3783Of course I attempted to color organize the shades as much as possible. I definitely go through phases where I’ll stick to one color or one shade, and I have a few polishes I haven’t used before. Before moving, I am considering getting rid or a few shades which I don’t use at all. The main problem for me is storage. When Topshop opened in Soho, I went to the opening and got a free bag, so since 2008 I’ve been storing all of the polishes in that bag. It’s such a hassle. I’ve not put them away in old shoe boxes, so will see how that works out. Any one have any good storage suggestions?

There you have it for part one of my nail care. Please stay tuned for part two later this week. 🙂




  1. I adore this article! Just started a blog and it would mean so much if you could check it out! Followed btw xx love the nail ideas

  2. Pingback: Nail Care Part Two: The Classic Manicure | The Vintage Cat

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