Back to the Basics : Part 1

June 1st seems to be the kickoff of summer in my mind, so to start off this summer I am starting a Back to the Basics Series! This series purpose is to do a list of thing...

•Help a beginner in the world of Nail Art get a good routine and start off right.

•Show my routine 

•Explain some basic starter designs

• Show a new point of view 
• Show you how to care for your nail

This should be a really fun series and have lots of info and pictures! I always enjoy reading series like this even if I already have a good base routine! Everyone has their own way and sometimes by reading someone else's you find something new to do! Within this series if you EVER have a question or comment, don't be afraid to ask! I love chatting with you all and am happy to reply! Hope to plan some live chats during this series as well! Should be a lot of fun!

Now let's get started!

Prepping Your Nails!

One of the most important parts to a good lasting manicure is the prepping stage! If your nails aren't prepped well then your manicure won't last. 

First off when I sit down to paint I take off all my nail polish. After that I do a variety of things. First off I start with filing.

I file a little bit each time I paint to maintain my desired length. Now believe it or not there is a right and wrong way to file. The correct way is to only file in one direction. The "sawing" motion is WRONG! Now yes, that may be easier, but the side effects aren't! :(  By "sawing" your nails they become more likely to split, and become brittle. Which I think we can all agree no one likes brittle, weak, splitting nails. :) So the correct way is to one file in one direction. If you do have a split nail I would suggest using a nail cube (pictured above) to buff it. It will make your nail a little thinner in that area but it's better than having that split snag on something and ruin even more of your nail!

When I file my nails I use 2 files. One that is rough and takes off a lot at a time. Then I use a smooth one to smooth my edges, since I have a squoval shape.

In the photo I included my nail cube which can be found at a variety of places for an inexpensive price! The files included can be found at ULTA. 
Shaping your nail can be a challenging task. It really is what works for you. Many say to match the shape of your cuticle. Meaning your cuticle is rounded have your nail shape match, same for square or my personal favorite squoval! :)  Now another factor into your nail shape is the climate in which you live in. Most people who live in a cold winter environment have a issue of more breaks with square/squoval nails, due to the dry air. I used to have that issue when I lived in a place that had cold weather. Now I live in a tropical environment and winters aren't nearly as harsh so winter isn't a factor so much as clumsiness is. ;) So all of these things are factors in nail shapes, its really different for each individual.  

After filing I then do cuticle work! For this I alternate these next few items.

The ELF cuticle pen helps pushing back my cuticles and acts like a cuticle oil. It can be found at Target for $1-$3. I really love it! Next up is the Sally Hansen cuticle remover. This is a product that I only use about once a month, or when I notice it needs to be used. It's really nice though and does work really well in my opinion! It can be found at lots of places! I recently saw it at Winn Dixie, Target, and WalMart.  Now on to my favorite cuticle product,  60 Second Manicure Scrub by True Blue! I love this stuff! It really makes your cuticles all nice and your whole hand soft! :) It's only sold at Bath & Body Works. Now lastly I have a little cuticle oil. I change brands and don't have a specific favorite right now, but this Orly one is really nice! It can be found at ULTA, Sally's Beauty Supply, and maybe now at Target. 

Along with these I used my favorite cuticle pusher backer. I prefer this plastic one from Sally Hansens but I know many people like metal ones which are also good.:) 


If you don't have one of those or you don't like them another option is Orange Sticks.

My Orange Sticks were purchased at ULTA. 

Now we have our cuticles covered, I also like to use lotion through out the week to keep my hands in good condition! My personal favorite is Bath & Body Lotion! 

After all of this you are finally ready for the real manicure process, but first go over your nails again with nail polish remover. This cleans all of the oils from all the products you used off your nails so your polish will adhere to your nail, and last longer!

Next up will be a post all about that base coat! ;) Its the set up to a wonderful lasting mani! So be sure to come back next week for it, you won't want to miss it!

Any questions or comments on this installment of the series be sure and leave them below or find me on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook! :)

Keep those hands healthy!

~25 Sweetpea


  1. Loved this post! I, too, love these sorts of nail care posts. :) I've been after that e.l.f. cuticle pen for a while and haven't been able to find it anywhere near me that sells e.l.f. products! So strange.

    1. Yay! I am so glad to hear you loved it! It is the first of many! I love the ELF pen! I hope you can find it! Around me I have only really seen ELF at Target and recently certain Wal-Marts. Also another place that you may try if you have one is TJ Maxx or Marshalls. Occasionally I see ELF stuff there and there is always a chance of the pen showing up there too! :)


Post a Comment

Thanks so much for visiting and commenting!

Form for Contact Page (Do not remove)