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How To File Your Nails

An Easy Way to File Nails

I will be the first to admit that keeping my nails in tip-top (sorry, bad pun) shape is a difficult goal for me. A few years ago as I was doing a little shaping action of my own, my friend, who supplements her income by working as a part-time manicurist, laughed out loud. "It's called an emery board, not a saw," she said.

So, apparently, I was doing it wrong. She told me all about the "short, short, long" technique, and I've never looked back to my overly aggressive tree-logging ways.

In order to achieve smoothly filed nails, it's best to start off by using a fine grit emery board, which is very gentle for natural nails. Starting on one corner of your nail, moving towards the center. File in a "short, short, long" motion, using the "long" motion to blend, smooth, and help mold your nails into the shape you desire. Then, repeat this step on the other corner.

Just remember to always file in one direction, otherwise you'll get jagged results. It's pretty simple once you get the hang of it — and your polish will last longer, too.


Join The Conversation
glam-sugar glam-sugar 8 years
Get the hang,/i> of it... LOL I love all your puns Bella!
Schaianne Schaianne 8 years
Oooo - thank your friend for the tip!! :D
lizlee89 lizlee89 8 years
great tip (haha)! thanks...
tglynn tglynn 8 years
haha, I'm with Sasseefrass, It's just too "chilly" for me to file. I'm too sensitive, I get goosebumps and have to grit my teeth.
agrepina agrepina 8 years
Sasseefrass im exactly the same..i cant get my nails dont professionally because i cant get my nails filed.. i dont think there much we can about it.. thats why i always have short nails!
Sasseefrass Sasseefrass 8 years
I get fingernails scratching on chalkboard shivers every time I try to file. Anyone know a solution for this? I usually end up just shaping them the best I can with my nail clippers.
emalove emalove 8 years
I think I actually read that here on Bella awhile back, Mn48225...I bought a glass file and I love it! Not sure if it's better for your nails, but I definitely prefer it.
allinavhcnerf allinavhcnerf 8 years
I still have problems with filing my nails. it' so hard! lol
mnp mnp 8 years
*heard that
mnp mnp 8 years
I head glass nail files are better. Does anyone know if they just last longer? Or are they better for your nails?
Renees3 Renees3 8 years
I know everyone says to only go in one direction but every time I do that they become lopsided. So I go back and forth, but gently and I think my nails are ok
fleurdelispink fleurdelispink 8 years
I love messing with my nails. I learned a long time ago the correct way to file my nails, and it runs right along with the advice you gave. I use this old glass nail file that I got from a kit years ago and then I use Seacret's Dead Sea Manicure Set, which makes my nails as smooth as glass. Nail polish was one of the best inventions ever :-)
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