Manicure Tips!

Hi, Everyone! Today I’ve got some more manicure tips and tricks to share with ya. I swear, I’m like a mani/pedi encyclopedia! I’ve been doing this stuff since I was about 3 or 4 when, way back in the day, I had Megan’s Beauty Shop (real original, I know) and I would put makeup on my mom, cousins, and aunts and do their nails! Really, bless their hearts for letting my 3 year old hands near makeup AND their faces. haha Today, I also wanna share with you guys how I go about doing manicures and pedicures for my clients, because it can sometimes be a tricky thing to charge for. I’ll explain all that in a second, but first I wanna show ya’ll the newest manicure I did myself, just a few nights ago! I’m not much for girlie-girlie colors (I love edgy things) so I used peach and white and then added in some silver and black and did some really fun patters. Check it out:

Photo: mani monday (: lovin' these colors together

The end result was a liiiiitle too sloppy for my taste because I’m extremely OCD when it comes to nails, but overall, I really liked this fun, edgy look and I’ll probably recreate it using brighter colors for summer this year! If ya’ll wanna do this look yourself, it’s pretty easy, just takes some patience! Some people like to use tape to get straight lines, but I find that sometimes that can ruin your polish, so I just like to layer my colors. Nail pens are actually really great for that as well. I can get through an entire manicure and have it be perfect, but I am literally the most impatient person that has ever walked the face of this Earth, so I almost always mess it up during drying time. Never fails. haha Even if you aren’t impatient, no one likes waiting for their mani to dry, so I’m gonna share my tricks on how to speed up that drying time!

Check out Sally’s Beauty Supply. I found an amazing product there that dries nails in about 30 seconds, not even kidding you. It’s called Dry Kwik and it looks exactly like a top or base coat. Same clear liquid, same bottle, same everything… except that the product is magic! You let your polish dry for about a minute and then swipe this stuff over it. Bada-bing, bada-boom, your nails are dry! Plus, since this has the consistency of an oil, after your nails dry, you rub it into your cuticles for a really nice, polished look.

Use Pam. Yeah, you read that right! You know, that non-stick cooking spray? Let your nails dry for a little bit before and then use that! It will significantly cut down your drying time. The downside is that it is pretty messy, so use it over a sink! And it tends to be a bit of a water repellent, so washing your hands takes some extra time, but if you’re in need of a drying agent, it gets the job done.

Run under cold water. You guys have probably heard of this one. It’s obviously the most simple one to get done, but it also doesn’t have the significant drying effect that the first two do. After you paint your nails, run them under cold water for about 5 seconds each. It won’t be an instant thing, but it really does help solidify your polish faster.

These three tricks are tried and true and I use them often! You can also apply thinner coats of polish or look for instant drying polish as well. Do some trial and error and see what method works best for you and then stick with it!

Now on to the tricky stuff. Everyone who knows me knows that I do makeup. Only a few people know that I actually offer some other beauty services as well. Along with makeup applications, I also do private makeup classes, manicures, and pedicures. If you would like to hear all about my makeup artist story and see how I got my start, check back later this week because I plan on doing a whole blog post about that! Anyway, when people find out that I do manis and pedis, they’re excited! As they should be! I offer those services much, much cheaper than what you would get at a salon. Figuring out what to charge people is a tricky issue sometimes for freelance makeup artists (again, if you wanna hear more about my normal rates, how to determine what to charge, discounts, etc, check back in a few days!). My normal rate for manicures and pedicures is $10. That includes me using all of my own products and my packages include: basic foot/hand massages, scrubs, deep moisturizing, oils, and then polish application. I also offer hot wax services, which includes all of this as well, for $15. But, some of the time, my clients just want a quick polish job, with no other fancy stuff. Then I run major discounts and charge around $5. If they only want a polish job and they bring their own polish, it’s free! There’s no need to charge them if I’m not using my stuff.

I love what I do and I’m so thankful that I get paid to do this every day. I make my own hours and charge my own rates and still make a really great living off of it. If you think the beauty industry is for you and wanna learn more or you’ve already got a job doing this and are trying to figure out rates and things like that, be sure to check up on my next few posts and I’ll explain everything to ya! Until then I hope this helped a little bit and I hope ya’ll enjoyed my manicure tips above. Have a fantastic day, I’ll talk to ya’ll later!

XOXO, Megan (:



Mani Monday! How to Achieve Your Perfect Manicure

Good Morning, Everyone! I hope you guys had a fantastic weekend! Now it’s back to the daily grind. I ordered an extra large McCafe drink this morning from McDonald’s… it’s a Monday. haha Today for Mani Monday, one of my favorite holidays (it can be considered a holiday… right?), I’m gonna walk you guys through the steps on how to achieve your perfect manicure. While there is quite a few steps (and some products you’ll have to buy), it’s not a hard thing to do. Besides, it’s so worth it when people ask where you got your mani done at. Girl, you reply with the biggest smile that you did that shit yourself! Go you! So, let’s get talkin’!

First things first: I’m gonna give you the run down on all the products you need. There’s not really a need to splurge on any of these items, you can find them all right at your local drugstore in the nail isle! However, I did purchase my cuticle oil and various hand lotions and scrubs from a company called Secret (sounds kinda like a sex store, no?). I received it as a present, so unfortunately I’m not sure how much it was. But, since then, I’ve picked up everything at Walmart and Target, with an occasional trip to Sally’s Beauty Supply! The items you’ll need (you’ll probably already have some lying around your house!) are:

~nail file

~nail clippers

~buffing block (it has 4 different sides, each achieve a different task)

~hand lotion

~exfoliating hand scrub

~cuticle oil

~cuticle pusher

~cotton pads

~nail color(s) of your choice!

Like I mentioned earlier, all of this is readily available at Walmart, Target, Walgreens, etc. and you don’t have to break the bank! Once you’ve gathered all of these items, you’ve got yourself a one-way ticket to a perfect DIY manicure!

Now, I’m gonna share with ya’ll the 10 steps of prep work needed to have your mani turn out the absolute best. When using so many different products and tools, it’s important that you follow these steps in order to avoid ruining your nails. Obviously, you’ll never tear your nail off or anything catastrophic like that (or at least I hope not!), but going out of order could cause extra drying of the nails and brittleness. Take notes!

1) Clean your hands! I always like to start with a clean base, so lather up and rinse with warm water! Dry thoroughly.

2) Once completely dry, clip and file your nails to desired shape and size. I always leave mine short. Confession: I’m a nail biter! When filing down your nails, be sure to always file in the same direction, DO NOT file back and forth! That will cause tearing of your nail!

3) Get out your buffing block, it’s time for the manual labor! I have a few different buffing blocks from a few different places (none is better than the other) and they all have directions on how to use them printed directly on the block. Others will have it printed on the packaging, so be sure to keep that if that’s what yours does. You need to use each side in a certain order to achieve the best look, so read the directions before! This will be your most time consuming step.

4) Once your done using your buffing block, exfoliate your hands gently with the scrub. Rinse with warm water.

5) No matter what you exfoliate, always follow up with a moisturizer! Your face, hands, feet… moisturize, moisturize, moisturize!

6) Now its time give some TLC to your cuticles. Start by dabbing on just a little bit of cuticle oil. Less is more! Rub the oil in and let it sink in for about 30 seconds to 1 minute.

7) At this point, your cuticles will soften up and be easier to work with, so now you’ll push them back. This is important: NEVER, ever, ever, ever CUT your cuticles! This will lead to all sorts of problems. Just push them back! I know it’s tempting, but pushing them back will be better for ya in the long run. Promise.

8) Almost done now! Dip a cotton pad into your nail polish remover and just quickly swipe it over your nails to clean off excess product. Nail polish adheres better to clean nails.

9) Rinse with warm water and then….

10) Apply your polish!

This whole process shouldn’t take you too, too long… just around 30 minutes or so. But that’s not including the painting and drying time of your nails! So it’s just best to do this on an evening when you don’t have anything to hurry for. I always do mine on Sunday evenings while watching The Walking Dead. Now that the season ended (until October. Just kill me. I CANNOT wait that long), I’ll probably switch it up. This will take you some time and patience, but hey, can’t rush perfection, right? (:

Later this week, maybe even tomorrow, I’ll have up a picture of my newest manicure that I did last night, along with some mani tips and tricks about shortening drying time, fixing mistakes, etc. I’ll also have a post about how I do nails for my clients and how much I charge, because that can sometimes be a tricky thing for some people. So get ready for all of that! Apparently it’s gonna be a manicure kinda week this week! Thank ya’ll for spending time with me this morning! Now go rock that flawless manicure you did yourself (:

Happy Mani Monday!

XOXO, Megan (: