My Updated Mani Routine

Happy Friday! It's been awhile since I've posted about my weekly manicure routine, mostly because for awhile there I was really slacking and my nails were suffering for it. After multiple breaks I decided to re-dedicate myself to getting my nails healthy and strong again. I have switched up a few of the things I use and eliminated others.

My Weekly Routine

 Stains are the bane of my nail existence. I have suffered with staining for years and I am at a point where I just really want to be rid of them! On Fridays when I get home from work I take whatever nail art or nail polish I have off of my nails. For the rest of the weekend I leave them bare. Not so they can "breathe" per se because nails are dead and therefore don't need to breathe, but to simply give them a break from nail polish and allow my nails a chance be able to grow out any stains. I just liberally apply cuticle oil throughout the weekend and try to avoid immersing my hands in water a lot. On Sunday afternoon, I sit down and get started on my manicure!

I am a minimalist when it comes to taking care of my nails. I always have been, but over the last few months or so I have been incorporating things into my weekly manicure routine to improve the overall health and look of my nails. The first of those being mani bombs! If you don't know what mani bombs are just think of bath bombs - but for your nails! They are infused with essential oils and baking soda to nourish the nails as well as lift stains. My current faves that I use are KBShimmer Mani Shots in Lemon Verbena and Chai Tea.  There are a bunch of other awesome scents as well if Lemon or Chai aren't your thing. They  just came out with a Milk, Oats and Honey one that I am dying to try out!

After I have soaked my nails, I apply a liberal amount of

CND Solar Oil

. This has been my go-to cuticle oil for awhile now. I use this whenever I do my nails.  At work during the day I have recently started using Emerald & Ash Cuticle Oil and I love it! It's think and sinks in quickly. I use the scent "Clean Crisp Air"

Once my nails have soaked in the oil I apply a thin coat of Nail Tek II Intensive Therapy. After my move I had two pretty bad breaks followed by another bad break. My nails needed some TLC! I don't use this every week. I use it usually for a couple of weeks and then take a little time off from it since over-using strengtheners can actually damage the nail over time. 

To prepare my nails for painting I use KBShimmer Basic Training Base Coat. If I am using Nail Tek at that moment I apply a coat of Basic Training Over it. Otherwise I simply apply this and allow to dry. If I know I will be using a darker color or a color that I know staing I apply two coats to my nail for extra protection.

If you've read my post regarding top coats then you know I've tried a ton.

KBShimmer Clearly on Top

is what I've been using for the last year or so and I'm still in love with it. Fast drying, no shrinkage and high shine. Oh- and did I mention that it doesn't dull holos? Yes, please!

Finishing Touches

I stopped using pure acetone to remove my nail polish some time ago. My nails have been struggling with dryness and that was only adding to the problem. I now use the basic generic Strengtening Nail Polish Remover you can get from CVS or Walgreens. Nothing fancy! I still use acetone for clean-up and for removing glitter or textured polish but that's pretty much it. For hand cream... well I am currently between hand creams. My skin is very sensitive and doesn't like fragrance so I have to be very picky about what I use. If you know of any unscented hand creams that don't contain parabens or lanolin point me at them!

And there you have it. My routine is still pretty basic with a few extras thrown in to promote nail health!