5 Tips to Apply Nail Polish Like a Pro

apply nail polish like a pro

Do you want to have salon quality nails all the time? You don’t have to get a professional manicure or pedicure at the salon. Follow these 5 tips to apply nail polish like a pro.

1. File and Buff Your Nails

Start your manicure or pedicure off right with clean hands and nails. Use a file and buffer to shape and even out your nails. Move the nail file from the corner toward the center, moving in one direction. Do not saw the file back and forth across your nails; it can splinter and damage your tips.

2. Don’t Forget The Base and Top Coat of the Nails

A professional nail technician doesn’t skip this step and neither should you! Residue and oils on your fingernails can cause polish to chip or peel, so you need a solid base. Base coats also help protect your nails and cuticles from common problems such as breaking, splitting, and peeling.

The top coat will lock in the color, prevent chipping, and add shine for a nicely polished look. For long lasting polish, choose a fast drying, shiny top coat so that you can be on your way without smudges.

3. Use a Fine Tip Brush to Create a Defined Outline Around Your Nail Cuticles

Dip the brush in acetone polish remover and make an outline around the cuticle. This makes a big difference for a salon quality look. After your polish is complete, apply an oil or lotion to add moisture back to your cuticles.

4. Apply the Nail Polish Perfectly and with Care

As you pull the brush out of the bottle, wipe one side clean and fan it out along the neck. Lightly tap excess polish from the other side of the brush. In one smooth motion, move the brush across the center of the nail, from cuticle to tip. Then, swipe it along the left and right side. Apply one or two more coats to even it out and increase the richness of the color.

5. Rotate Your Dominant Hand to Apply Nail Polish

One of the challenges when applying fingernail polish yourself is using your non-dominant hand. For example, if you’re a righty, then applying polish with your left hand can be especially difficult. Instead of relying on your weak left hand to do all the work, lay your right hand flat and rotate it as you move along the nails.


Do you want to become a professional nail technician? You can with manicuring/nail technician training from Salon Success Academy! We offer a variety of programs to prepare you for a career in the beauty industry including cosmetology and esthetics. We have five convenient locations across the Inland Empire in California. Call (877) 987-4247 to learn more!