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Guest Post and GIVEAWAY – Nails to Dye For by Claudia Moriel

December 17, 2012

Note to freebie-fans – Claudia is giving away a free manicure at her Boston-area studio. Read to the bottom of this post to enter the giveaway!

Claudia Moriel outline

Ok so I am going to age myself now. I remember when I got my first set of acrylic nails.  Before nail salons ever existed you used to have to go to hair salons for your manicures and pedicures.   I got a paper post card in the mail from a hair salon promoting a special on acrylic nails.  This was a couple of years before I myself got into the beauty business.  So I must have been about 17 or 18 (yes I started young). I took this paper post card into the hair salon to try out these new fangled acrylic nails.

It took over an hour to plaster the stuff on my nails and they felt and looked thick.

I wasn’t 100% convinced the experience was great or that I would do this again.  It was time consuming and seemed excessive. I was left thinking and feeling there must be a better way to do this.  I’ve always had a good sense of quality and value in the beauty industry even at such a naïve age.

Fast forward a couple of years and I’m the one in the salon performing the same service.  The tables were turned and I fumbled through the nail world for the first year.

Then nail salons started popping up and I migrated from a regular salon to a nail salon. I was taken under the wing of a very talented manicurists and learned how to do really GREAT nails. To this day I still apply and have improved upon the techniques I learned over the 18 years that I have been a manicurist.  I told you I was going to age myself.  Since then I have done nails for the following actresses.

Anne Hathaway – Bride Wars (courtesy of Claudia Moriel)

  • ANNE HATHAWAY – Nails on the set of Bride Wars
  • KATE HUDSON – Nails on the set of Bride Wars
  • SELMA HAYEK – Nails on a photo shoot for Avon 
  • BROOKE SHEILDS – Nails on the set of Furry Vengeance
  • ANNA FARIS – Nails on the set of What’s Your Number

One of my clients said I am like a MAC computer – once you go MAC you never go back.  Once you get a Claudia manicure you never go back.

Here are my tips, tricks and products that help your nails last 5 to 7 days with out chipping!

After performing basic manicure steps . . .

Step 1 Wash hands and make sure they are completely dry.

Step 2 Coat a small square of paper towel with alcohol and clean each nail.

(It’s better to use a paper towel so that you to don’t get any cotton debris caught in the polish)

Step 3 Coat the nail with Bond Aid or Chip Skip by OPI

OPI Bond Aid 1oz

OPI Bond Aid 1oz

Step 4 Apply a thin layer of Revlon Colorstay Base coat to all nails.

Step 5  Apply two thin coats of polish to each nail.

Step 6  Wait a minute for nails to set.

Step 7 Apply a think coat of Revlon Colorstay top coat
(These Revlon Colorstay products are AMAZING!)

Then wait at least 20 minutes for the nails to try. I find that the Revlon Colorstay dries slower than your typical base and top coat.

I also recently found this FUN and long lasting nail polish brand called KB Shimmer.  Yes, I’m 37 and I still wear sparkle nail polish with pride.  All of their colors have a wonderful confetti style to them and they last a solid week.  But the colors aren’t for the timid or conservative.

Party Nail Polish

KB Shimmer Nail Polish in Party (courtesy of KB Shimmer)

My KB Shimmer Party nails

My KB Shimmer Party nails

Finally I have to RAVE RAVE RAVE about nail stickers.  I was dubious when they first came out.  Since then I have tried them I have fallen in love.  However, I do have to say not all nail stickers are created equally. 

When ever a new cosmetic fad appears I’m the first one out there trying all the different brands to see which is the best.  My friends all turn to me to find out what brand they should use and why.  I feel like a walking cosmetics encyclopedia.  I have tried a lot of the brands out there and can honestly say that no brand is better than . . . drum roll please

Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips

I LOVE LOVE LOVE these nail stickers.

Sally Hansen Salon Effects Nail Polish Strips (image courtesy of Sally Hansen)

My Sally Hansen stash...

My Sally Hansen stash…

I always have 5 to 10 styles of nails stickers to choose from at home.  I don’t want to do the math and realize that I have $50 to $100 worth of nail sticker stock in my possession at all time.  Shhhhhh….

But if you think about how much manicure cost, it all balances out,  Right?

One of my customers also recently told me that you can find the Sally Hansen Nail Stickers for  $3-$5 at certain dollar stores like Five Below.  I went on the hunt and found them.

Sally Hansen nail stickers last 5 to 10 days depending on the pattern.

There is a bit of a learning curve when applying them at first but once you get the hang of it they are speedy to put on and don’t require a dry time. It’s also easy to remove nails sticker, all you need is nail polish remover.

This is a picture of my recent silver sparkle French Manicure from Sally Hansen I wore for Thanksgiving.  These stickers last over 7 days!

My Silver Sparkle French Mani using Sally Hansen stickers...

My Silver Sparkle French Mani using Sally Hansen stickers…

The thing I like the most about the stickers and traditional polish is that they help your nails grow and stay healthy.  I know everyone is on the gel manicure fad right now and for some people it does work.  However, during the removal of the gels my nails have gotten damaged.  I am also impatient and the process of removing the gel just drives me crazy! It’s messy and time consuming.

I also like the freedom of removing and changing my polish when I get bored with what I’m wearing. Lately I find myself changing my polish because I’m bored with a color not because it’s chipped!

What are your long-lasting manicure tips???

Claudia manicure giveaway

Click on the image to enter, or go to

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