There was a moment when gel manicures seemed like a dream come true for their ability to keep out manis chip-free for over two weeks. Once we started probing into why they last so long — hint: harsh chemicals and concentrated UV exposure — it became impossible for us to enjoy them as a beauty luxury in the same way. Turns out, there are a few simple tips to make manicures last longer — maybe even as long as gels.
We asked Sarah Gibson Tuttle, founder of Olive & June, the it-girl adored nail salons found across LA, to share her top tips to make a mani last. Sarah and team have finally launched their own line of polishes and they’re as good as we hoped they’d be — free from commonly found chemicals and offered in an array of spot-on shades for a flawless mani.
Here are Sarah’s foolproof tips to make a good manicure last…
6 Steps To Make A Non-Toxic Mani Last
Gather tools | The hardest part of mani upkeep is not having the right tools at your disposal. We created the Studio Box so you have everything together for the perfect at-home mani.
Prep before paint | Prepping is the most important step. Make sure your nail plate is free of any oils (we recommend a dip in our nail polish remover pot) so nail polish adheres completely.
Thin over thick | We strongly encourage applying thin coats. The thicker the coat, the more quickly polish will chip. This means your polish will look streaky after the first layer (or two) but that’s okay, it just needs to look perfect on the final coat.
Cap it | We recommend capping your nails (swipe the brush along the end of your nail after each coat) to seal in the polish. This really helps avoid micro chipping at the tips.
Top it off | To make manicures last, top coat is your mani’s BFF. Top coat your nails every three days or so to elongate your mani and keep it shiny.
Stay dry | Water and polish are not besties! Use gloves when washing dishes and try to avoid swimming, baths or the ocean if you want your mani to last. We also like giving our nails a break from polish when we know we will be spending lots of time at the beach or pool.