Do you envy seeing beautiful models flaunting their elegant hands in front of the camera? You think of heading towards a salon to get a professional manicure. Then you realize that the cost of salon manicures can add up to thousands of bucks over a year! On top of that, you might not have enough time to make regular trips to a salon. So, what to do?

We have a solution. Here is a step-by-step guide for ladies like you who want to do a solon-quality hand manicure sitting right in their home. Excited? Read on for the step-by-step complete procedure to do a DIY manicure at home— that too for a fraction of the cost. 

DIY Manicure At Home – Step By Step

Item You Need For A DIY Manicure

Make sure that you have a “DIY manicure kit.”

(i) Nail-polish remover

(ii) Cotton swabs or pads

(iii) Nail clippers

(iv) Emery board or nail file and nail buffer

(v) Cuticle pusher and nippers

(vi) Callous/cuticle remover

(vii) Moisturizer

(viii) Base coat

(ix) Nail polish



Perfect Manicure At Home DIY (Step-By-Step)

# 1

Remove Any Previously Applied Nail Polish

To use acetone or not? When you are at a drugstore and mulling over which type of polish remover to buy, remember this: Non-acetone nail polish removers are gentler than acetone-based ones. But the acetone-based remover works much faster, so it will be in contact with the skin for a shorter period of time than the non-acetone-based removers. It’s a trade-off because even the gentler non-acetone-based polish removers are not kind to skin.

# 2

Shape Nails

Clip your nails, if necessary. Then, if needed, gently file them into a shape as you desire. A slightly rounded nail shape or square-rounded edge is, by and large, the preferred one.

Tip: I usually fancy rounded nails (mirroring the shape of my cuticles), which extend just over the edges of the fingertips, and believe me, they look elegant.

After shaping, smoothen the tops and sides of the nails using a slightly abrasive buffer. The purpose is to make the nails surface even but keep in mind that if you buff the nails too smooth, the polish won’t stick and can actually slip right away.


(i) Before filing, ensure your nails are completely dry (filing wet nails can cause splitting).

(ii) Avoid using metal or extremely coarse nail files, as they can splinter your nails. Instead, go for a gently abrasive emery board or crystal nail file.

# 3

DIY Manicure Soak

Ahh…. time for a real spa feeling now! Apply a rich hand cream. Now soak your hands in a bowl of warm (not too hot) water mixed with a little bit of your gentle face cleanser or shampoo. Soaking the cuticles before trimming is essential, but beware that too much soaking can damage your skin and nails.

Thus, limit the soaking time up to 2 minutes only.

Natural Beauty Tip: Once you are finished soaking your hands, apply a gentle face scrub or exfoliant (you can use natural hand scrub (read here for homemade hand scrub recipes ), and scrub your hands. You can also use a brush to clean your nails. Scrubbing and exfoliating will get rid of the dead skin from your hands. Rinse your hands with clean water and then pat them dry.

# 4

Clean And Trim The Cuticles

Cuticles are the soft skin at the bottom of your nails where the fingernail cartilage and skin meet. Apply a little bit of cuticle remover. Let it sit on the cuticle area only for a few seconds. Then, gently push your cuticles back away from the nails using a cuticle pusher. But don’t push too far because it can damage nail growth or fray the cuticles.

Caution: Make sure not to pull, lift, tear, rip, force, or cut into the cuticles in any way. Take care not to clip into the cuticles; just nip off the free edges with a pair of metal cuticle nippers. We strictly advise not to overdo this step but rather underdo it, as the cuticles protect you from all sorts of infections.

Tip: Check if you have hangnails around the sides of any of your nails. If so, carefully remove them, but again, be careful not to cut into the nail itself or to cut into the skin too deeply.

# 5

Read here for beauty mistakes


Massage a rich, creamy moisturizer or silky oil into the cuticles and all over the hands to hydrate and replenish skin. Alternatively, you can use any oil of your choice.

# 6

Prep For Nail Polish

This step is optional, as you may or may not want to apply a nail polish. If you intend to compliment your nails with some beautiful color, then follow this procedure:

First, you must ensure no moisturizing ingredient is left on your nails because it will prevent the polish from adhering properly. Using a cotton swab or pad, apply nail polish remover over the nail’s surface to remove any residue. Try to avoid getting remover on the cuticles, as it’s good to keep that area moisturized. But don’t worry if you do, because you’re going to apply moisturizer on your nails again once the polish is dry.

Tip: Make sure your nails have nothing oily or emollient left on them.

Read here for skincare

# 7

Time To Glam Your Nails With Nail Polish In Layers:

(i) If your nails are weak or brittle, it is a good idea to use a base coat of ridge-filling nail polish to shore up the nail. Alternatively, you can use a transparent nail polish as a base coat. A base coat also protects nails from staining (especially important if you prefer red nail polish) and prevents chipping. (Read here for how to cure brittle nails.)

(ii) Next, apply the color polish of your choice in two thin layers, allowing each coat to dry between coats.

Tip: For each coat, use three strokes on each nail—on either side of the nail, then a swipe of color across the tip to prevent chips.

(iii) To add luster and shine, apply a top coat. Top coat (transparent nail polish) not only helps to make your manicure last long but also enhances the appearance of your nails.

Tip: If you’re new at painting nails, use a lighter shade of polish; any mistakes will be less noticeable!

(iv) Check up for any mistakes. Clean up gently any color outside the edges of your nails with an orange stick wrapped in a thin layer of cotton and dipped in polish remover.  Voila, you’re almost done! Now, let your nails dry. It takes time for nails to dry out completely, so be patient.


(a) A fan helps to dry out fast, but don’t put your nails too close to the fan’s airflow, or you’ll end up with bubbles in your polish.

(b) Avoid using heat (like from your blow dryer) or the polish will chip and peel.

Read here for skin care hacks

Natural Beauty Tips For Perfect Nail Manicure In Home

(i) Regularly moisturize your hands and nail area to keep them healthy looking. (Read here for how to take care of your nails.)

(ii) Spare a few minutes to touch up your manicure every other day with a single thin layer of transparent top coat. This is our secret trick in keeping up that “from the salon” look and durability.

(iii) To minimize slip-ups, paint your dominant hand first (it’s even difficult to use your non-dominant hand when the nails are wet with polish). Always try to move from your pinkie (little finger) to your thumb, preventing your finger skin from getting smudged.

These are the steps and techniques to give yourself a beautiful, salon-like manicure. Knowing how to do it yourself manicure can save you a lot of time and money!


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