If your manicure has chipped or it's out-grown, then it's time for a freshen up.

If you've always relied on your nail technician to keep your finger and toe nails looking perfect, now is a better time than any to learn how to do them at home.

Leading nail expert, salon and nail varnish owner Leighton Denny has created a handy guide on how to fix chipped nails and do a gel manicure from the comfort of your own home.

Fix Chipped or Cracked Nails

If you have cracked or split your nail and you don't want to chop them down, here is a little trick that can help the split grow out: 

  1. Gently buff over the crack/split with the Trio Buffer. 
  2. Apply a small amount of nail adhesive over the area. Place a little bit of tissue/or teabag mesh over the crack and let the nail glue set.  
  3. Once dry, gently buff and apply another coat of nail adhesive over the repair and let dry 
  4. Gently buff again and apply base coat and colour to hide the repair. It should hold the crack until it grows out. 

Gel Removal

For gel removal take off the shine off the top of the gel polish with a nail file and saturate 10 cotton balls with acetone.

Place one ball covering each nail and hold it in place with tin foil, wait 15 minutes and wipe off the gel polish. Reapply if needed.

7 Steps To Polish Perfection 

  1. Make sure your nails are clean before applying a base coat. This helps minimize streaks and peeling polish.  
  2. Roll the nail polish bottle between your hands to mix it up. Shaking can create those annoying air bubbles and ruin a perfectly good paint job.  
  3. Wipe off any excess polish from the brush on the insides of the bottleneck, the brush should have just enough on it to cover one nail.  
  4. Start from the base of the nail for a smoother finish. To avoid getting polish on the cuticle, place the brush on the nail about 1/8th of an inch away from the cuticle and push backwards towards it, stopping just before the skin. Then make the usual stroke up towards the tip. Always swipe the very ends of nails to stop chipping.  
  5. It is better to apply two thin coats of polish than thick coats. The thicker the coat, the longer it takes to dry. Many quick drying polishes dry from the outside in, so if you apply a coat over a thick coat that is not dry underneath, you may get indentations or smudges. Also, thick coats are more likely to chip at the tips.  
  6. After applying two thin, even layers of colour, wait a few minutes before applying your topcoat.  
  7. Once the topcoat is tacky spray Miracle Mist over the polish to help speed up the drying time and protect the polish from getting smudged. This technique also stops your nails from sticking to clothing or bed sheets. 

You can buy Leighton's products here.