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I am a mother, a new grandmother, and a teacher. But whatever happens in my life, I keep sewing. I have worked as a political communicator and now as a teacher in my formal life. I have also written extensively on sewing. I have been a frequent contributor and contributing editor of Threads magazine and the Australian magazine Dressmaking with Stitches. My first book Sew.. the garment-making book of knowledge will be published in May 2018 and is available for pre-order from Amazon


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Sunday, May 27, 2012

Frivolous question

I am taking the day today to sew for my daughter. But I have a totally frivolous question.

How many of you paint your nails regularly and how do you keep your polish lasting more than a day or so?

I have trouble keeping my hands still for all that nail drying and really can't deal with that more than once a week.

If I lived here I would be tempted to get them done but on Canada it would cost me about $150 a month and well you know I translate that into yardage.

What do real women do?

Good to know my brain is occupied on major world issues as I sew isn't it?


annie said...

Long-wearing nail polish is not a major world issue?!?

Jodie said...

I've no success with this - but paint my toe nails. If you are careful (and keep the dog from shedding on you) you can do "stuff" while waiting.
Also - there is 'quick dry' nail polish - works well!

Good luck!

Sewfast said...

I don't keep them regularly polished because like you, I can't sit idle long enough for the polish to dry properly and I do too much with my hands for the polish to look good for more than an hour. I love to garden, and while I do try to put my gloves on for major stuff, the temptation to pluck an errant weed as I'm passing by is just too great. Plus as a nurse I am constantly washing my hands so my cuticles dry out rather quickly. sounds like I need a good manicure :/

Erica B. said...

I polish my nails quite frequently. You'd be amazed at how fast they dry when you apply a quick drying topcoat and mindlessly read blogs and other internet junk! LOL

wendy said...

making the color last: if you do a pale color that's close-ish to your skin tone then chips are less obvious. but my biggest tip is Revlon's extra life no chip top coat. i put a coat on as soon as i get home from getting my nails done & a coat every few nights after that, and it really helps. that stuff is amazing.

but sewing is tough on polish even with a good top coat. :( i keep my nails shorter than finger length but they still get messed up from all the pins and everything.

Karin said...

My nails chip *instantly*, so even before big events I've always had a manicure without polish.
BUT, Friday, I gave in and had a Geleration manicure. I looked good Saturday, they still look perfect today, and I am told they will last three weeks. Only downside, they have to be soaked off at the salon, you can't do it with acetone at home. And of course they'll charge you.
There are several name brands of this extra long wear nail polish that salons can apply (Shellac, Gelish, Geleration.)
They seem to really work, but I would't want to spend the money to maintain them all the time. But nice to do before an event, vacation, holiday, etc.

Margy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andrea said...

Use a good base coat and top coat, and two coats of polish in between. On top, I use a product from OPI called Drip Dry. Great product, it really helps with dry time. You can get it from nail shops or Amazon.

I get manicures weekly, pedicures monthly. Here it is not expensive at all.

The #1 way to make your polish last is to wear rubber gloves for doing dishes and cleaning.

Totally not frivolous at all, IMO!!

marysews said...

I rarely get my fingernails done (most recently was last July for a special event). I get a pedicure 2 or 3 times a year (last time was 3 weeks ago).

I have some ideas to do them more often. a) give myself a manicure and pedicure, and pay a salon to only apply the polish layers. b) do my own mani-pedi, and get my husband to apply the polish layers. The only problem with that is my impatience, and am considering looking into buying a device that has both a fan and an UV light. Has anyone here ever bought one of those?

a little sewing said...

Within the last year, I went from never polished nail to almost always polished nails, thanks to the CND shellac system. I bought a dryer that works really fast (mail ordered from amazon )
nail dryer

I usually just use a very light nude color so it doesn't matter if my polish wasn't applied perfectly. That takes a lot of practice to do well.
I really like it, it brings out the little girl in me.

Sue said...

I agree with Robin. The shellac is the way to go. Right now I am having it done at a salon. But, now that I know the shellac lasts at least two weeks I am going to buy the system from Amazon. I also agree with Erica B; reading blogs make the drying time fly!

mari.hafenstein@att.net said...

I bought the gelish system about 10 months ago. I am now working on perfecting a French manicure with them. I love having manicured nails but hate the price. I do have a professional pedicure every few weeks especially in the summer, but I live in TX and we live in sandals.

Lisa Laree said...

I have finally decided life is too short to spend hours waiting on my nails to dry, only to chip them (or, more likely for me, peel back a whole strip because I didn't wait long enough) immediately upon doing something even remotely useful.

I have very brittle, crumbly nails that split and flake anyway; there's just not much I can do with them...

Vivienne said...

My nails were never good enough to warrant polish (thin, bendy and flaky)until I tried shellac. I bought myself the whole gel polish kit from Red Carpet Manicures and it cost me about the same as three salon manicures. It takes 45 seconds to dry each coat and just the same as regular polish you have base coat, two polish coats then top coat. Your nails are completely dry when you are finished. It lasts for two or three weeks and protects your nails while they grow long. Check out you-tube videos on the process. I'm now enjoying the look which I too, previously thought was frivolous.Ha! now I know better.

Rose said...

Frivolous? You are exploring a serious issue! Because of all that drying time, I only do my nails for special events. The manicure lasts about 3 days if I don't use my nails as tools a lot. A pedicure last about a month. Thanks for asking the question. I got some good tips reading the comments.

Sandra said...

This is a VERY important topic, Barb; thanks for raising it. I keep my toes polished year round. I like looking at my toes and seeing that I'm doing *something* to take care of myself. As for my finger nails, I like to keep my nails short. I have left them plain way too long and am quite interested in this gel system that Robin described. Do you use it with regular polish or a special gel polish (for color)? What is this UV light thing like? I looked at the link but didn't get a clear sense of it. Thanks everybody for your comments.

Anonymous said...

This is a very important topic. I get pedis every 2 weeks all year round, but we are living in north Mexico right now and live in sandals. Mani's, I hate the down time to allow them to dry, so I use a Sally Hanson product ( I can't remember the name) that is real nail polish in a sticker form. Just get your nails ready and slap these pupppys on. I did mine in 10 minutes earlier this week and they still look great.

Leah said...

I paint my nails quite often. Here is what I do:

- Basecoat + 2 coats polish + 1 coat of Seche Vite or Poshe quick dry top coat.
- Don't wait between coats. This goes really fast after some practice. I can do the whole thing in 20 minutes including removal of my prev polish.
- The quick dry top coat dries to the touch in 5 minutes
- Watch a tv show with my husband though just to be safe
- Go to bed


- Make sure nails are oil free before you paint. Swipe with alcohol or acetone
- Push cuticles back before you paint, moisturize them after
- Don't use your nails as tools
- Short nails are totally chic
- Lighter colors make chipping less noticeable if you can't paint more than once a week
- Enjoy your beautiful accessories (your hands)

MySummerTouch said...

I have the same problem. My solution is to apply acryl to my nails (the same as to make a foe-nails from acryl), and then apply base coat, 2 coats of polish and top coat. Last for 2 weeks, or until I'm bored with it. The same I do on my legs.

BetsyV said...

never have painted my nails, never will. Don't see the point; can't stand the smell.

LinB said...

I'm with BetsyV, all the way. Don't see the point, don't like the smell. I rarely notice if someone else's nails are polished. Clean and filed are all that is necessary.

Lady V said...

When I worked, I kept my nails buffed to a pretty good shine. I like that look better than polish. Since I retired, I have slacked off and only do it on occasion. I do paint my toenails in summer only. They don't chip like the polish on my hands.

Debbie Cook said...

I get my nails done at a salon about every 2 or 2-1/2 weeks. I have acrylic nails so they never break. I get them polished and then a gel topcoat. I've gone back to color after a long stint of pink/white (french). The polish does not chip EVER. Seriously. It's about an hour each time I go. I figure I'm worth an hour of "wasted" time esp. because I like my nails to be done.

I also read your latest post and I have to say I'm not ready to give up on the hair coloring yet either. :-) I do that myself at home