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Paint Your Own Damn Nails

A mani-pedi may seem like a quick, cheap form of pampering, but a biweekly treatment at Rescue Beauty Lounge, say, will set you back $2,080 annually. Owner and author Ji Baek graciously offers tips for stay-at-home beautifiers.

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1. Forget expensive hand and foot creams. Body moisturizers or anti-aging lotions are plenty good for hands and feet.

2. Nail files and buffing blocks can be bought in bulk at a beauty supply store like Sally’s. Better yet, cut the files in half and the blocks in quarters to make them last longer.

3. The proper way to file is at a 45-degree angle underneath the nail. If your nails are weak, gently file in one direction.

4. Don’t overcolor. Wipe polish off one side of the brush, put one dot in the middle of the nail, and fan out until the polish reaches your cuticles.

5. Be patient when drying—fifteen minutes minimum. To speed up drying time, go for a walk in the cold air. It shrinks the molecules in the lacquer.

Annual Savings: $2,000
(Assuming nail supplies cost $80 a year.)


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