The 8 Best Nail Wraps
Regular polish can be messy, but these nail wraps are easy to apply, long-lasting, and — best of all — less expensive than a regular manicure. Plus, they are made of strong materials, so you won't suffer with unsightly smudges, cracks, or streaks. Don’t waste time waiting at the salon when amazing digital extremities can be achieved at any moment, right from the comfort of your home. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best nail wrap on Amazon.
A Brief History Of Nail Polish
In ancient Egypt, it was common for the color of a person's nail polish to symbolize their social standing.
While adorning one's fingernails may seem like a relatively modern idea, the practice dates all the way back to around 3000 B.C.E., and is believed to have begun in China. During the Zhou Dynasty, noble families liked to paint their nails in metallic tones, particularly gold and silver, but over time, red and black replaced them as royal favorites. The oldest known formulas for nail polish consisted of a mixture containing beeswax, egg whites, gelatin, and vegetable-based dyes.
In ancient Egypt, it was common for the color of a person's nail polish to symbolize their social standing. Lower classes used pale colors, while members of the upper class (and the occasional mummified pharaoh) had their nails stained a deep reddish-brown color using henna dye.
It wasn't until the 1920s that brighter hues became popular. Early formulas often contained ingredients such as lavender oil, Carmine, and bergamot oil to give them color. It was also common for women to use pigmented powders or pastes to stain their nails. In 1932, nail enamel was the very first product made by beauty giant Revlon, and offered a much more varied line of colors than existing options.
And, believe it or not, the first acrylic nail was invented in 1954 by a dentist named Fred Slack after he broke one of his nails at work and needed a realistic-looking replacement. He and his brother experimented with the formula, filed a patent, and started a company called Patti Nails.
Tips For Applying Your Nail Wraps
While nail wraps are a lot easier to use than liquid polish, there is definitely a learning process for the first couple of times you use them. Here are a few tips and tricks to make the process easier.
Before you start, make sure your nails are clean and dry. Apply a clear base coat, preferably one that contains strengthening ingredients such as keratin and calcium. This helps to smooth out any ridges or creases, giving you the smoothest possible surface for your wraps to adhere. Wait until it's completely dry before proceeding.
When you're ready to remove your wraps, there are a few ways to go about it.
If you have small fingers, you may need to use a pair of nail scissors to cut your wraps down to size in order to get the best fit. And don't be afraid to mix and match — just because a particular sticker is made to be used on your pinky nail doesn't mean you can't use it on your ring finger if it fits better.
When applying your wraps, start from the cuticle and work forward. Press down while stretching the wrap towards the tip of of your nail, smoothing out any bubbles as you go. This will help them to better adhere to your nails and stay on for longer.
After applying, trim off any excess and use a file to gently buff away any remaining material that sticks out over the edges of your nails. Try to only file in one direction at a time, moving towards the tip using downward strokes, as a back-and-forth sawing motion can weaken nails and lead to jagged edges. You can also use a top coat if you wish. This extra step may seem like a pain, but it will help your wraps to stay on longer and give them a shinier look.
When you're ready to remove your wraps, there are a few ways to go about it. It may be tempting to just pick them off, but doing so makes it much more likely that you'll damage your nails. Heating them first with hot water or a hair dryer makes them much easier to peel off and helps to prevent damage. You can use rubbing alcohol or nail polish remover, but they can be drying. If you want to remove your wraps while also making your nails healthier, try soaking them in warm coconut or olive oil, which softens the wraps and breaks the seal between them and your nails to make them easier to pull off.
Ways To Keep Your Nails Healthy
Some lucky people are just blessed with naturally healthy and beautiful nails without having to lift a finger to maintain them. But for the rest of us, a little more effort is necessary. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to make your nails look and feel a whole lot better.
First and foremost, if you have a habit of biting your nails, try your best to break it. Nail biting has a variety of negative side effects, including broken skin and torn cuticles, which can lead to infection. And, in some rare cases, the nail beds can become permanently damaged after years of biting, preventing the nails from growing to a normal length and shape.
Some lucky people are just blessed with naturally healthy and beautiful nails without having to lift a finger to maintain them.
Try to avoid harsh chemicals and cleaners, as they tend to strip your nails of their natural moisture. Many antibacterial soaps include drying ingredients, and hand sanitizers that contain alcohol are particularly harsh. Wearing gloves while gardening, washing dishes, and performing other household chores can help to mitigate the damage. You can replenish moisture in dry nails by applying an alpha hydroxy acid or soaking them in paraffin wax or mineral oil for 10 to 20 minutes.
Diet can also play a role in the health of your nails. Biotin is a form of vitamin B found in eggs, avocados, nuts, meat, and some vegetables that can help to strengthen hair and nails. Calcium can also affect nail growth, and if you want to up your intake, don't just look to dairy products — beans, tofu, almonds, broccoli, and leafy greens are all great sources of calcium, as well. It's also important to make sure you're getting plenty of protein in your diet for healthy nails.
There are a lot of supplements that promise to make your nails, along with your hair and skin, healthier than ever, but scientists and medical professionals are skeptical about their efficacy. For the most part, any nutrients to be gained from these supplements can easily be found in a variety of foods, so you're better off saving your money and sticking to a balanced diet.
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