A trip to the nail salon is the best way to perfect your manicure, but sometimes, you may not have the time to head down for an indulgent mani-pedi. The solution? A DIY manicure at home.

However, painting your own nails at home can be tricky. The nails on your non-dominant hand will often look flawless, while your dominant hand is left looking botched and far from perfect. Perhaps you painted over your cuticle, or you’re left with a streaky, uneven mess on the sides of your fingers.

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Well, it turns out, there’s a handy hack that’ll give you smooth and even results when you paint with your non-dominant hand. Mytien Le, a nail specialist at nail polish brand Sundays Studios, has a trick up her sleeve that’s simple and ingenious. All you have to do is “move your finger around and let it do the work for you.”

in this article
  1. How the hack works

How the hack works

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Instead of attempting to manoeuvre the delicate brush over your nail with a shaky and unsteady hand, try this easy two-step trick:

  1. Hold the nail polish brush at the straight-on angle above your nail
  2. Move your finger into place based on how you want to apply the colour

By using this method, you’re letting your non-dominant hand rest, while the fingers on your dominant hand get to work, making your chances of ending up with a messy manicure on one hand significantly lesser.

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The technique also applies to filing your nails with your non-dominant hand. Simply hold the emery board or nail file at a head-on angle while moving your finger to the angle you wish to file at. Avoid “sawing” away at your nail with back-and-forth motions, as you may split or fray your keratin layers. Instead, file in one direction until your nail reaches the perfect shape.

This proves just how easy a home manicure can really be, and how you can end up with nails looking like you just walked out of a nail salon. Now, you can focus on applying the colour evenly instead of worrying about how to get a better grip or angle with your non-dominant hand. You should end up with significantly fewer smudges using this technique!