How to French Tip Nails

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There's no reason you can't achieve a great looking set of French tipped nails all on your own. Even though there are many French tipping kits on the market today, many of their adhesive strips can cause dust, fuzz and other debris to get sucked into your white polish, ruining all your handiwork. All you need is a steady surface and some practice.

Wipe your nails down with some nail polish remover. This will take off any debris or lingering polish. Run water over your fingernails in the sink to ensure that all of the nail polish remover is washed off.

Evaluate the length of all 10 of your nails to see how evenly trimmed they are. Clip them all to a uniform length, which is typically based off of your shortest nail. If your shortest nail is extremely short, cut your nails so that the tips stand just a bit taller than your fingertips.

Even out your nails with a nail file. Based on the natural shape of most of your nails, determine whether you want to file your nails into a oval shape or a square shape.

Sit on the floor with your knees pulled up to your chest and your feet flat on the floor. If you're sitting on a couch or other surface, sit with your feet tucked under you. Rest the hand you plan to paint on the corresponding knee. For example, if you're going to paint your left hand first, then rest it, palm up, on your left knee.

Allow your nails to dry. Dip an ear swab into the nail polish remover. Blot any excess remover and clean up any corners or nail beds that may have gotten paint on them by accident.

Dip your brush in the white nail polish. Get enough on the brush that one or two swipes will completely coat the tip of your nail.

Push the nail you are painting gently into your knee. Begin with the paintbrush lying horizontally along either side of the nail. Swipe the polish along your nail, following its natural quick.

Fill in any blank or missed spots with a minimum amount of polish. Continue this process with your entire hand.

Switch hands and knees and begin the process again. When using your non-dominant hand to paint, you can make your painting a bit more steady by holding your brush in place and allowing your knee to slowly move away from your finger. This will result in the same swiping motion, but should eliminate wobbliness that typically results from using your non-dominant hand.

Add another coat of paint to the hand you started with. You can use less paint this time, and don't have to follow the white line that you created during the initial coating exactly. If you've already made a nice white line that separates your quick from the rest of your nail there is not reason to go over it again, as you'll likely flaw the line with a second coat. Instead, you can simply swipe close to it. Repeat the same process with the second hand.

Wait 15 to 20 minutes for the white polish to dry. Try not to touch anything in this time period.

Test out how dry your nails are by swiping a top coat of polish on the pinky nail of the first hand you started with. If it doesn't smudge or smear, you can proceed on with your other fingers. Do the same with your other hand.

Allow your nails to dry. Dip an ear swab into the nail polish remover. Blot any excess remover and clean up any corners or nail beds that may have gotten paint on them by accident.

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