The Ultimate Guide to Saving Money on Your Nails

Whether it is summertime or it is chilly and the icicles are still hanging from the windows, most women will not pass up treating themselves to luxurious manicure and pedicure. Mani/Pedi’s are a girl’s best friend!  However, maintaining beautifully polished finger nails and toe nails requires a bit of upkeep. Manicures are usually needed bi-weekly to preserve their look, and a pedicure can usually be done once a month, and in the summer, maybe bi-weekly as well.  Finding ways to save on manicures and pedicures, so you don’t empty your wallet, is a great way to keep your spending in check.

Tips on saving money when you get your nails done

  • Learn to do it yourself – giving yourself a manicure instead of going to the professionals for each time you want your nails done will always save you the most money. We have a complete guide on how to apply acrylic nails like a pro, which includes costs, what type of equipment you need, and a step by step guide.
  • Applying nail polish – if you are doing your own manicure, you need to know some of the best tricks to make the polish last. One trick is to apply a thin layer of nail polish on the nail, not a thick layer.  Think layers can chip easily and take longer to dry. Two thin coats are the best.
  • No full service salons – going to a salon that isn’t a full service, fancy salon will allow for a little leeway with price. Try finding a place that is solely for nails. You can look into a mall salon or a Korean salon that has quality technicians as this will usually be your best deal.
  • Buffing – the secret to gorgeous, shiny looking nails is buffing, you get the beautiful nail without the hassle of the nail polish. Buffing usually lasts a long time and can be done at home any time you would like.
  • Polish purchase – make sure you buy the color polish you wish to put on yourself or the one you bring to the nail salon. Nails salons often add chemicals to thin out their polish, which makes it not last long. Having your own polish will enable the color to last longer and also allow you to be able to reapply if you get a chip or just need another layer to brighten up the color after a few weeks. Julyne Derrick from Live About.com says, “I like to buy my own polish because I prefer polish that’s free of chemicals (most polish contains formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, formaldehyde resin and camphor). If you buy your polish and keep it with you after a salon visit, you can reapply a coat after a week and save yourself a few days.”
  • Nail length – keeping your nail length shorter will make it less likely that you will break your nail or chip the nail polish. Also, keeping them more rounded will prevent chipping too.
  • Top coat – if you are at a salon getting your nails done, ask for the long lasting top coat. Most salons will add an extra cost for this product, but it is definitely worth it. Also, buy it for at home too.  You can use it after a salon manicure, or when you do one at home.  Apply it every three days to keep your polish intact.  An excellent top coat product that you can use is Seche vite.
  • Color change only- when you are at a nail salon, consider getting a polish/color change instead of a full manicure. These polish changes can cost around $5, which is much less expensive than a full manicure, which can start at $20-25.  If your nails are in good condition, this is all you should really need every few weeks, and then perhaps get a full manicure every other month or so.
  • Wear gloves – a few ways to easily ruin a manicure from a salon or a do-it-yourself one is water, containers, cleaning, etc. If you are using any type of water or cleaning product, wear gloves! Soaking your hands in water multiple times a day will cause your nails to chip. The same goes for trying to open a difficult container.  If you struggle with a lid, you are more likely to chip your nail as you become more careless when you get frustrated.  Use gloves to help you, this way your nail isn’t contacting the container.

Besides going to the salon to get your nails done, which helps keep them maintained and healthy, it is important to continue to keep your nails healthy even when you do not have a salon visit planned. Keeping your nails healthy will also make it so that you do not need a full salon manicure as often. This would help you save money on your manicures and pedicures.

Try these 8 ways to keep your nails healthy

  • Biotin, B vitamin – if you are someone who happens to have weak nails, you would likely benefit from using this supplement. It has been known to strengthen nails and also help nails grow. By using this supplement every day, you will start to see success.
  • Give your nails a break – nail polish does not harm healthy nails, but you need to give your nails a break every so often. By removing polish, you can see if the polish was hiding any infections or tumors in the nail. When removing nail polish, do not use acetone nail polish remover as it is too harsh on the nail.  Acetone dries out the nails and irritates the skin around the nail as well. If you get gel manicures, you also need a break from the UV light that is used to cure the gel. There is a slight risk of skin cancer from this light.
  • Moisturize cuticles – your cuticles protect your nail beads, so you want to be careful not to cut them back too far or push them too much where you cause damage to them. If you damage them, you can leave your nail bed at risk of getting an infection. To help, it is vital to moisturize the cuticles instead of pushing or cutting them.
  • Trim nails – by keeping your nails trim, you will avoid breaking or catching a nail when doing normal everyday tasks. It seems to be more common now to have shorter, natural looking neat nails. When trimming, you can use files to smooth out the edges and also buff your nails.
  • Using a nail brush – if you use long, sharp tools to clean under your nails, you are risking getting an infection. Whether you get a manicure done at the salon or do it yourself, being rough, you could cause a gap between the nail bed, which could cause bacterial or fungal infections. So this doesn’t happen, instead use a nail brush to gently clean your healthy nails.
  • A fashion statement – dish gloves! – by constantly putting your hands into hot, soapy water when you clean or wash dishes, you are weakening strong nails. Doing this will dry out your nails and the rest of your hands as well. Therefore, wearing gloves is the best way to combat this from occurring. Ironically, cold water doesn’t have this effect as swimmers nails do not have these issues.
  • Minimize manicures – save a few dollars and just go into a salon for a polish change. Keep your nails healthy by just getting them shaped, and a fresh coat of polish put on.  Do not opt for the acrylic nails as they can lead to more infections then a regular manicure and there is a slight risk of skin cancer for the UV light that cures the gel nail.  If you do have them and are concerned, wear sunscreen to protect your skin.
  • Take infections seriously – using Band-Aids to keep a broken nail from getting caught is okay, but if you see that your nail or skin around your nail has an infection brewing, you need to check with your doctor. If the infection was bacterial, you would see signs of redness, swelling, and pain. It is easy to miss the early sign of a nail fungal infection because it is mainly just irritated, puffy red skin which some people breeze over as nothing.  If you have a fungal infection, it can improve with an antifungal treatment that you can get at the pharmacy and in rare cases; you might need a prescription medication to cure it.

We all like to enjoy a nice manicure and pedicure and to have days where we get to be pampered.  However, our wallets aren’t always able to keep up with it becoming a regular habit.  Using this guide to help you save money on manicures and pedicures is a great place to begin.  Along with tips on saving money, making sure you keep your nails healthy is essential as well. The result of healthy nails will ultimately assist in saving money on your manicures and pedicures.