How to perfectly apply Nail Polish

Firstly let me just say that I am no expert when it comes to nails, I just do my own alot. So I feel like I now know how to apply nail polish quite quickly and also neatly. I also know what I use to do wrong and how nail polish can look sometimes messy! However I hope you all don't think I'm being condescending by writing this post.

Hopefully I can explain in the best way possible what I do with my own nails - however once I get my new camera, which shoots in HD video ;) I will actually make a video on it and just update this post with it.

First I want to tackle the hardest part of nail painting - painting your nails with your non-writing hand. Which for me is using my right hand, as I am left handed. This can actually be incredible difficult for some people. 

My main tip is to actually tackle this first...don't paint your nails as you normally would, as when you come to doing the opposite hand you will notice how much harder it is to using your writing hand (I hope this is making sense). For example I paint my writing hand (my left hand) first ofcourse using my right hand, then I go onto to paint my other hand with my writing hand. Doing it this way basically doesn't highlight the difference between using your writing hand to your other hand. 

 Also if you do get any nail polish around the cuticle of your writing hand, this means you can  dip your index finger of your non-writing hand into abit of nail polish remover and use the tip of the nail to remove any nail polish from the cuticle. 

Anyway onto the techinque I use to paint my nails and get that neat edge around the cuticle.

The main thing I can suggest is not to paint right upto the cuticle as chances are the nail polish will seep into the cuticle and look messy. 

1) As you can see in the top left image, I start with one strip of polish down the centre of the nail. By just placing the brush just above the cuticle and brushing upwards. 

2) Then place the brush back to the same point as where you started and swept the brush to the right and making sure you are missing the cuticle. As you can see you are then just left with the left side to do like in the above right image.

3) Then you basically swept it along on the left side, which should create that neat edge you want. 

As for how much nail polish to have on the brush, I always push one side of the brush onto the top of the nail polish opening before I start and ofcourse let the polish fully dry between coats. 


As for cleaning up any mistakes, using a cotton bud soaked in nail polish remover works well, or if you haven't painted the over hand, just the end of your nail dipped into some remover will work really well, as I mentioned before. 

Also I find having ridge free nails really helps and makes the nail polish look and last better. So using a cheap 99p multi buffer is a must!

I also just go over each nail with a cotton pad of nail polish remover before I start painting my nails, to remover any grease/oil. This just helps the nail polish hold onto the nail abit better.

Lastly to finish off the nails I apply quite a cheap watery top coat, the reason for this is there is no chance of it ruining your freshly painted nails.

Also I find certain nail polishes easier to apply than others! I find matte polishes always easy to apply as they are normally opaque with one coat and don't apply patchy, the same goes for any glitter nail polishes really. 
Dark shades are also easier to apply, again they just aren't patchy and seem just easier to work with. 

As for ones to avoid - I'd say most pastel shades are always difficult to apply, they just show up every single flaw and tend to be quite patchy in nature! 

I slightly feel this is a pointless post however if it helps only one person I will be happy!



  1. I found this really useful. I've always been quite useless when it comes to painting my nails. Must remember to paint my right hand first in future. Thanks for that :)

    Which watery top coat do you use? I find the barry m one to be quite thick and so can drag the polish if it isn't quite dry xx

  2. This is really useful! I literally just did my first NOTD begging for hints and tips! :) *Hint* More appreciated!

    I've only just managed to grow my nails and start painting them. My main problem is they're so thin they are sometimes see-through even with polish on. Still working on that one... The avoiding the cuticle tip is very useful - that can get very messy! xx

  3. I'm absolutely rubbish with my nails! The most I do for them is use a hand cream regularly. When it comes to painting my nails, I do it the night before and if I get any polish on my cuticles, it comes right off in the shower the next day! Haha.
    Thank you for the post though, I'll try make more of an effort with me talons!

  4. I'll try this later... ^__^

    I'll tell you if it worked for me. ^__~

  5. Very interesting! I will definitely give this a try!


  6. Nice tips! I'll deffo try the one about painting with your non-writing hand first. =)

  7. another useful post! Thank you so much for this! =)

  8. Great post! And another great tip for this is to put a little dab of Vaseline around your cuticles before you polish then once your nails are dry the bits were you've gone over will wash off! x

  9. I'm sure loads of people will find this helpful as it's not as easy as you think to apply polish! I have friends that turn up to lunch with it all over their hands... god knows how. xx

  10. I had been waiting for a post like this forever, I'm completely rubbish at doing my nails. Will definitely try your tips, and please do post the video later! Thank you so much!

  11. Great advice and the pictures helps a lot. Definitely worth creating a video!

  12. "The main thing I can suggest is not to paint right upto the cuticle as chances are the nail polish will seep into the cuticle and look messy." DING DING DING I found this out rather recently and it's such a huge help haha. Great post darling!

  13. most definately not a pointless post, this has helped loads! i hate painting my non writing hand! xxx

  14. fab tips, the pictures are amazingly clear!xx

  15. Good idea for a post and great tips.

    I will try this as soon as my nails have got into better shape after being battered by acrylics for too long.


  16. great ideas, thanks! i really need to start making an effort, i just slap nail polish on! x

  17. The most popular make up by Tasha com, gave me so many tips on beauty and make up that I have transformed my looks in to more beautiful looks. These people have researched and give the right suggestion. . makeup

  18. I like this article. Should have been around when I just started polishing my nails; it would've saved me a lot of trial and errors! :) A tip: I use a slanted eyeliner brush and some acetone to do my clean up. I found that it works more accurately in cleaning up the mess. :) Some polishes are just so runny that you can't help but getting cuticle drag...

  19. Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Quickbooks Tech Support


I love to hear what you think and do read all comments.
If you want to ask a question make sure to check back after afew days for a reply.

Blogger Template Created by pipdig