Hands, fingers and nails are not usually cared for as much as other parts of the body (think how much more attention you pay to your face!), but they're the part of you most likely to be treated the worst. From washing up to gardening, hands and nails often become neglected and this results in broken, dirty nails and flaky, dry skin – not a great look! Properly looked after hands and a lovely set of nails can do wonders for your image; it shows you pay attention to yourself and care about your body.
What is a manicure?
A manicure is a cosmetic beauty treatment for the hands and fingernails and has been around for almost 5000 years. There are also specialist manicures for just the hands, or just as a nail treatment. Some manicures can include artificial nails and/or nail art so it's up to the individual to choose exactly what they'd prefer.
Overview of a standard nails manicure
Firstly, for the nail treatment, the beautician or nail technician will remove any old nail polish you may have on your nails, or any remnants from a previous coating. This ensures your nails are back to their natural color, and any dirt is removed. A small amount of cuticle cream will then be applied to the base of your nail (where the nail meets the skin of your finger) and rubbed in. A bowl of hot water should have been prepared before you began and you'll now need to place your hands in to soak for approximately 10 minutes. While one hand is soaking, the beautician will usually begin working on the cuticles of the other hand; an orange stick is used to push the cuticles back and separate them from the nail, so any old skin can then be cut away. Once one hand has been done, work will start on your other hand. Special nail clippers will be used to cut away the softened cuticles, and the beautician will be careful not to snip any skin that shouldn't be removed (this is often the mistake most people make when doing home manicures – they snip away too much cuticle and are left with sore, red nail beds).
As part of the nail treatment your nail technician will use an emery board, they will file your nails using a gentle stroke and begin to shape them. You'll often be asked if you prefer oval or square shaped nails, so choose depending on what shape is most suited to your own nail bed shape. Nail shape trends change so ask what the current trend is if you're unsure and want to follow it!
Once you have perfectly shaped nails, you'll usually be given a short hand massage to help circulate the blood and leave your hands smooth and moisturized (no more flaky, dry skin!). Now it's time for the fun part; choosing a color. If you're having a manicure done for a special occasion, make sure you choose a color that matches both your skin coloring and outfit, or if you don't have a particular outfit in mind it's often best to go for a shade that compliments your lip color. Alternatively you could opt for a French manicure, which gives a great natural look.
The polish will be applied in long strokes until the nail is completely covered (usually this can be achieved in a total of three strokes). The beautician will then wait until the polish is dry and apply a second coating of color and a top coat. Make sure you give your nails at least an hour to properly set before touching them (or washing up etc.) or all the hard work will be ruined. Now you should have beautifully soft hands and perfectly polished nails!
Please note, this method is just an example and your nail manicure may vary slightly depending on different beauticians, so don't worry if your beautician changes the steps around - the results should be just as good!
Think how much you use your feet every single day; it's no wonder they often end up tired, with hard skin and yellow tinted toenails - after all they're stuck in shoes for the majority of the day! The skin on the soles of your feet is approximately twenty times thicker than other parts of your body so it deserves special attention, and fungal diseases are common between toes and under toenails so caring for your feet is extremely important.
Most people are guilty of ignoring their feet during the winter months and paying more attention to them in the summer months when they're on show, but healthy feet all year round will help prevent most nail diseases. Beautifully pedicured feet will also encourage you to show them off, and it's amazing just how many people will notice and comment on how good they look!
What is a pedicure?
A pedicure is a cosmetic beauty treatment for the feet and toenails, and can also help to prevent nail diseases such as Athlete's Foot, fungus and ingrown toenails. The best pedicures not only make your toes beautiful, but also include lower leg and foot massages to totally revive your feet. Your feet should end up smooth and moisturized, and your toes perfectly shaped and polished – a pedicure is basically a manicure for the feet! As with manicures, you may also decide to have some nail art on your toes.
Overview of a standard pedicure
As part of your foot care treatment, firstly, any old nail polish will be removed. Toenails are often forgotten about and it's common to leave nail polish on for months without realizing, but this really isn't good for your nails - they need space to breath or they'll end up with a nasty yellow tint. Once they've been restored back to their natural color, any long nails will be cut off. During your foot treatment the beautician will avoid cutting into the corners of your nail to prevent ingrown toenails, which can be extremely painful.
Next, your nails will be filed to the shape of your choice – although it's best to stick with the natural shape of your nail bed for the best results. Filing should be in one direction to avoid weakening nails, and will usually be from outside to inside to avoid splitting your nails. Once the beautician is happy with the shape you'll be asked to place your feet in a large bowl of hot water. Often there will be some oil or moisturizer in the water to help rehydrate your skin. This should feel great on your feet and you'll be able to relax with your feet soaking for approximately ten minutes. If you ever want to try this at home yourself but don't own a foot spa, a good tip is to fill a large bowl with two parts warm water, one part warm milk and five drops of olive oil; this will sooth tired feet and make them baby soft.
While your feet enjoy their soak, the beautician may gently scrub away any dirt or old skin once it has softened up. You'll then enjoy a lovely exfoliating foot care scrub to ensure any stubborn skin is removed – this may tickle but is well worth it! Most feet are dehydrated so next your beautician will treat them to a generous layer of moisturizer. At this point you'll probably get a lower leg and foot massage, which is without doubt the best part of the whole experience! Cuticle cream will also be used to soften them up in preparation for the toe polish later. Some beauticians may wrap your feet up and ask you to place them inside a hot boot shaped mat at this point to really let the moisturizer get to work, but different beauticians will use different methods.
Once your feet have been pampered it will be time to take care of your toenails. An orange stick will be used to push back your cuticles and a further filing of your toenails may take place to ensure perfection. All that will be left now is to choose the color you'd like on your nails. As with a manicure, make sure you choose a color that matches your skin coloring for the best results, or go for a shade that compliments your lip color. Alternatively you could opt for a French pedicure, which gives a really natural look. The polish will be applied in long strokes until your nails are completely covered, and then a second coat and top coat will be applied. You must wait at least an hour for them to dry otherwise they'll easily chip.
Please note this method is just an example and may vary slightly depending on different beauticians, so don't worry if your beautician changes the steps around - the results should be just as beautiful!
SPECIAL CLASSIC COMBO $35
Classic Manicure $15
Classic Pedicure $25
SPECIAL CLASSIC COMBO WITH SHELLAC (feet and hands) $55
Classic Manicure with Shellac $25
Classic Pedicure with Shellac $35
SPECIAL DELUXE COMBO $75
Deluxe Manicure $30
Deluxe Pedicure $50
SPECIAL SHELLAC DELUXE COMBO $95
Deluxe Shellac Manicure $40
Deluxe Shellac Pedicure$60
Express and Sweet Mani and Pedi $30
Polish Change (Feet) $15
Polish Change (Hands) $10