A standard manicure set should always contain nail scissors, tweezers and a nail file, but many luxury sets have extra implements such as clippers, nail pliers and under nail cleaners.
Nail clippers are great for cutting down long nails, but can leave the tips of nails angular and square. To create a less jagged and more rounded tip to nails, manicure scissors are ideal as the blades are curved. This means they can follow the natural shape of the nails more easily. Another key advantage of nail scissors is that you can see exactly how much of the nail is being trimmed, which is sometimes difficult to judge with nail clippers. Nail scissors are also a good investment for those with brittle nails – to prevent nails from snapping it is best to keep them short. Cutting brittle nails with nail clippers may cause them to split, whereas nail scissors produce much less pressure on the nail when cutting, reducing the chance of this happening.
Nail pliers are more robust, and create a greater cutting force. As such, they should be avoided for use on delicate nails, but are perfect for thick nails – especially toe nails! Often, normal nail clippers or scissors just can't adequately cut toe nails, but with professional quality nail pliers, cutting tough nails becomes easy.
Cuticle shapers, or a 'hoof stick' can be used to push and shape cuticles back from covering the nail, to the base of the nail bed. Not only does this give the nail a neater appearance, but it actually helps promote nail growth. Overgrown cuticles cover the nail plate and this impedes growth, so regular cuticle care can help those with shorter nails. Shapely cuticles are also an advantage for those who frequently paint their nails, as it creates a better shaped nail, and painting over the top of cuticles will result in nail varnish chipping more easily.
Longer nails may benefit from a nail cleaner, as these are specifically designed to reach under the nail and help remove any debris and dirt that collects under it.
Many manicure sets also have a nail file, which is always a great investment. Nail files are perfect for shaping the tip of a nail once it has been cut to a desired length, or for getting rid of jagged ends when a nail tears. Ensure that you file in one direction only for a smooth edge.
Manicure implements come in a variety of finishes: stainless steel, chrome or even gold-plated. Professional quality implements are considerably more expensive but should last a lifetime and carry a guarantee. Manicure cases are available in many different styles and finishes. A small neat one is perfect for keeping in a handbag for that unforeseen emergency! Leather sets are more expensive than those made from man-made materials, but make a lovely present to give or receive.
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Article Added on Friday, October 31, 2008
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