Summer Nails: DIY Pedicure

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During the summer after 6th grade, my friend Kara and I were at math camp, and we were painting each other’s nails for the 4th of July. (Seriously, don’t even ask why we were painting our nails at math camp, because I really don’t know the answer to that.) She had me paint her nails white, and I thought I did a great job until she noted that was expecting me to add red and white to make her nails American flags. I freaked out, made up some excuse as to why I couldn’t do that, and felt slightly embarrassed at my lack of nail art skills. So when Julep contacted me to participate in their Summer DIY-Pedi Contest, I felt like it was my chance to redeem myself of my traumatic 6th grade nail polish skills. I personally adore the idea of giving yourself a salon-worthy nail polish treatment at home, and I can’t waiiiiit to share with you what I did.

Also, I feel like this at-home pedicure has come at the perfect time, as my feet have been looking a bit like Shrek lately. With all of my SoulCycle classes on top of my trip to Washington, it really felt so nice to finally get my toes presentable for this flip-flop weather. I went with white nails, inspired by all of my favorite parts of summer. The contrast that the clouds make against the blue sky, the break of the waves, and the endless styles of white summer dresses.

nailcollage1.  First of all, you’re going to want to soak your feet in a tub of soapy warm water, whether that’s your bathtub or a mixing bowl from your kitchen. I used my bathtub. Soak for 2-5 minutes.

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2.  Generally the next step would be to file your calluses, but since I didn’t have a file, I skipped right on to the exfoliation step. The product I’m about to tell you about is a total game-changer. It’s called Buffy, and it’s an exfoliating and moisturizing body bar from Lush. I’m not sure that it was intended for feet, but I tried it and it works wonders. The best part about this product is that you don’t need to apply lotion afterwards because it leaves your skin smooth-beyond-belief.

SUMMERNAILS43.  Once you finish exfoliating and moisturizing, it’s time to work on your actual nails. Pull out your nail clippers, your nail file, your cuticle pusher, and your cuticle trimmer. Starting off with your nail clippers, clip them to your desired length and then remove any gunk from underneath your nails. Next up, take your nail file to shape your nails. The nail file I use is actually 7-in-1 product that has a separate sides for filing, buffing, evening out, smoothing, and shining. If you follow the steps correctly, it leaves you with a clean base that your nail polish will cling to so much better. You can pick one up at any Target. And last but not least, cuticle trimming. This step is actually a whole lot easier than it may seem, and absolutely worth it.

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4.  Time for polish!! Start off with any base coat. I use the O.P.I. one.

summerpedi65.  Add some color. I instantly regretted my decision to do white nails because I feel like white is the easiest color to mess up, but I really like how it turned out and it will look especially nice with a tan. The white I used was O.P.I.’s Alpine Snow. To top it off, I used Julep’s Jane to add a sparkly bronze heart on my big toes. To create the heart, I used a tiny paint brush to outline the heart, and then when that dried, I went over it with the brush that came with the bottle to really concentrate the sparkles. I wanted to keep the look simple yet stylish, and I think (I hope) I achieved that.

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6. Finish it off with a top coat. Again, I use O.P.I.

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Here’s what I came up with! I’m really happy with it and I hope my 6th grade self would be too.

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summerpedi2Have you ever done your own DIY-pedi? Or do you prefer getting it done at a salon? Lemme knoooooow! Also, when you get the chance, definitely go check out Julep’s fabulous line of polishes here! I’m kind of obsessing over the colors Abigail, Jeanne, and Elle. I’m also kind of thinking that it may be getting to the point where I need a rack to store all my nail polishes on. Is that a problem? I mean.. I consider it to be a good kind of problem, right? Happy Thursday!

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