For all of you in the U.K, I hope that you have had a wonderful weekend celebrating Easter in the sun!
Today we will be enjoying the second part of our Neal's Yard Home Hand Care Manicure. Last time we had taken a look at our hands and decided what shape we would like them and if there are any issues that we need to look at and treat. So today we are looking at cuticles and skin care for our hands. For this part you will need the following:
- Large bowl with warm water
- Cotton Wool
- Nail Varnish Remover
- Nail Buffer
- A salon quality nail file
- Orange Sticks
- 2 Plastic bags (zip-locks are preferable).
If you choose to leave your nails free from nail varnish, today will be the last step in your Neal's Yard Home Hand Care Manicure, however the next blog will be looking at how to apply colour to your nails which can be a great finish to any manicure!
Cuticles can be quite dry and come up too far the nail plate and when this happens they are prone to splitting, bleeding and generally causing a nuisance; that is why it is important to deal with them regularly. You can start to gently push them back when ever you dry your hands with a towel during the day, which is a great way to keep on top of them. As with my nails, about 12 days ago I stopped looking after my cuticles and allowed them to grow up so that we take a look at them together.
My nail plates are very strong and healthy and I can thank a good diet, a regular exercise program and the fact that I work with some beautiful massage oils to keep them looking great! It is true that your nails are can show how well you are on the inside. If they are weak, brittle and flake then you may want to start taking a look at how many essential fatty acids there are in your diet as you may not be eating enough. An avocado every couple of days can really help!
However, there is a myth that I would like to break; many people believe that if you have white patches on your nails it means that calcium problem. It's not true as all they are is a part of the nail that got bashed when it was being created in the matrix at the bottom of the nail plate. It will grow out and not cause any problems, so don't worry.
If you have ridges going in a horizontal line in your nails, again this is not something to worry about as it is just another part of the matrix being damaged when the nail was being formed. With time you can grow this out and buffing your nails every week can really help reduce it's appearance. (Buffing Blocks look like the one to the left and come with 4 grades of buffer on them, one on each side).
When you have a ridge in your nail in a vertical line however, you will almost always have that for a long time and maybe not be able to get rid of it. It generally shows that there is permanent damage to the matrix.
Is your problem that the nail comes away from the finger? Do you have a build-up of skin between the nail and finger? Do you have pitting in the nail? All of these and more nail problems are very common and I see them in the treatment room every day, but at that point I do like my clients to see a G.P or Dermatologist, both of whom can send away a sample of the nail and skin to see if there are any infections that can be treated through medication or another form of therapy. They can also rule out Psoriasis and Eczema for you as well.
So now we can start with where we left of last time!
- Now you have filed your nails and are happy with the shape of the them, it is time to look at your cuticles.
- Soak your hands in the warm water for a couple of minutes to soften the cuticles and take time to relax. There is no rush!
- Take your Neal's Yard Melissa Nail Balm and put a drop the size of a grain of rice on the nail and massage it in around the cuticle.
- Now, take an Orange Stick and cover the angled tip in cotton wool by simply making it a little damp and then rolling it over the cotton wool. You don't want to make it too thick, but the cotton stops the stick poking the cuticle too much and damaging the matrix.
- Now simply rest the angled edge on the nail plate and gentle push down to the bottom of the nail plate so that you gently push back the cuticle.
- Using the nail buffer, simply use it over your nails gently, using the 3 gentle steps as the first step on any buffer is normally too abrasive for any nail plate to take kindly too. Don't over work the buffer as your nail plate only needs about 4 sweeps per step.
- Now take your Neal's Yard Nourishing Melissa Hand Polish and massage it in to your hands and really work it into any dry patches of skin. Rinse it off in the warm water and then dry the hands on a towel.
- Pick up the Neal's Yard Wild Rose Beauty Balm and massage it into your hands and nails. The product is rich and moisturising, it nourishes the hands and treats the cuticles well. It also offers a deeply cleansing treatment and is your all round emergency skin saver! Once well massaged in, simply pop your hands into the plastic bags and enjoy the Neal's Yard Wild Rose Beauty Balm as a hand masque for 10 mins.
- Remove the bags and rinse the Neal's Yard Wild Rose Beauty Balm off your hands and nails. You can do this by using your Geranium and Orange Hand Wash.
- Now look at your nails and make sure you are happy with them.
- If you are leaving your nails nude of nail varnish, I would just pick up the orange stick and gently work under the free edge of the nail to get rid of excess product to leave it clean and clear. I would also take the softest side of my buffer and do a quick once over with that on my nail plate.
- Now pick up your Neal's Yard Melissa Hand Cream and massage into the hand and enjoy your beautifully kept hands and nails.
I think I have found an answer to the video problem, and although it isn't perfect it may just work! I'll try and get it sorted by the end of the week so we can really start to do this treatment together!
In the next blog you will need your nail varnish remover and your chosen colour, so make sure you have them to hand for the final part of this Neal's Yard Home Hand Care Manicure with me!