Honing Your Skills

Nail Troubleshooter: Polish, Gel, Gel-Polish, and Acrylics

Once you start working with clients regularly, you may run into minor mishaps that will challenge you. To help you out when they do, keep this chart handy for pointers on fixing some of the most common problems.

POLISH: a solvent-based coating containing pigments and/or dyes that dries when exposed to air.

Problem: Polish getting on the skin
Solution: Use balance-point positioning. Brace the hand that holds the client’s finger on the table, and hold the finger between your forefinger and thumb. Then use the little finger of your polishing hand to anchor it to the three unused fingers on the holding hand. This lets you pivot your brush in a smooth and comfortable way. Note that the thumb and forefinger of the holding hand pinches the client’s finger to pull back the soft tissue from the nail plate. This makes the nail bed a little bigger and ensures complete polish coverage.

Problem: Polish applied too thickly
Solution: Use the three-stroke method. Patting polish on can make it dry slowly and look thick. Three long, fluid strokes is the best way to apply polish evenly. Lay the brush flat to the nail; make one stroke down the center, then two on the sides. By practicing this along with balance-point positioning, your polish applications will get faster and more precise.

Problem: Hands too shaky
Solution: Don’t polish on an empty stomach. Low blood sugar can cause slight tremors and distract you from the job at hand. Make sure to eat something before work and stay fed throughout the day by snacking between clients or having a healthy lunch.

Next page: Gel troubleshooter

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