For most of my life, getting a professional manicure or pedicure has been a real treat. When I worked as a bartender, I would get regular manicures because I felt like it was part of it — no one wants to see raggedy nails making a martini.
In high school, I had acrylic nails for awhile, but that was never really a luxe manicure. If you’ve ever had acrylics, you know how painful they can be.
But mostly, I have done my nails at home. For the last few years, I’d been keeping my mani/pedi “supplies” in a big tote bag so I could carry everything from my bathroom to my bedroom or living room to do my nails.
A few weeks ago, though, I realized that the tote bag had gotten out-of-control. There were things in there that didn’t belong, and even bottles of nail polish that were basically dried up.
For as much of a beauty junkie as I am, I have really never invested in my at-home nail kit. So, I dumped everything out of the tote bag and threw out everything that didn’t belong and tossed the old stuff that was no longer good.
Then, I took an inventory of all of my nail polish and tossed any that looked dry or separated (likely really old). A few days later, there was a sale on my favorite nail polish — Smith & Cult — so I bought a few colors I didn’t have in my collection.
I went back to my kit and made a note of missing items: good nail files (I’d used all of mine so they hardly did anything), and a buffing block. I went to Walgreen’s specifically for these items.
About a week later, I caught a sale on some additional items for my kit (listed below). When I got everything packed into a new, smaller bag, I was so happy!
I’ve used the kit three times now and it’s so much more functional and organized. Plus, I don’t have to dig through a bunch of junk just to use stuff in there, and now, the stuff actually works so I get a decent-looking manicure!
Here’s everything I’ve got in my at-home mani/pedi kit:
Miss Spa Soften Footies – Ever since I tried the Aveno footies (basically a foot mask inside a disposable sock), I love these things! I especially love them after traveling because my feet are usually so worn out. I caught the Miss Spa ones on sale, so I stocked up. What I love about these is that you can put them on and relax, or you can still walk around the house and they won’t slip and your feet are still being pampered!
Pure Acetone Nail Polish Remover – No matter what brand, I always go for the acetone. It’s a must-have if you’re looking to soak-off gel nails, but also gives a much quicker removal for regular and glitter polish.
Buffing Block – It’d been so long since I had one of these and I forgot how awesome my nails look when I used one.
Toe Separators – I have a few sets of these and because my toes are nearly on top of each other, I’d really be screwed without them.
Earth Therapeutics Tee Tree Oil Foot Spray – If you really want to feel like a professional, grab some foot spray! This stuff is minty and refreshing… plus it makes your feet smell good 🙂
Juara Coconut Hand and Nail Balm – I love the way this stuff smells. I’m admittedly bad about putting cuticle oil or balm on every night (I do use the Sally Hansen Hard as Nails serum though!) but I at least put this stuff on when I’m giving myself a manicure or a pedicure.
Nail Clippers – Gotta have a nice set of nail clippers. I have a small set for my hands and a larger set for my feet.
Tweezerman Nail Files – I saw these and was so excited to buy them! They’re neon and I love the Tweezerman brand.
Sally Hansen Ultimate Shield Top Coat – I used to not use a top coat… big mistake. This is a game changer!
Smith & Cult Base Coat – I love all of their nail polish colors and names… plus it’s a female-owned brand. Had to go ahead and get their base coat.
Train Case – I’m using a soft-sided train case to hold everything. It works great because I put the nail files where makeup brushes would usually go and it has lots of room in the bottom and a zip pouch for all of the other goodies. Mine was a gift, but I found this one for under $15.
Are you all doing your nails at home now? What supplies are you loving? Let me know in the comments so we can all up our mani/pedi game!