Guest Post: A Little Polish

Hello Lovelies!
This is Stephanie from over at
A Little Polish. I have been friends with Victoria now for over ten years and so when she told me she started a blog, I was more than happy to offer up a guest post for her. While her blog is a little bit of everything around Minnesota living, mine is solely nail polish & nail art, so today I will be sharing with you some tips for taking care of your nails during the winter months, and also a Minnesota themed mani.

The cold winter weather can be very harsh on your nails, I live in Pennsylvania and it is bad here, so I can only imagine that since Minnesota is even further north, that it can’t be any better. The winter air really dries out your hands, cuticles and nails, so here are some tips for keeping your nails healthy during the winter months.

1.       Good cuticles are the basis for good nails! Make sure to keep your cuticles moisturized during the winter months (and the summer if you have dry skin). I am lucky that I have fairly nice cuticles on my own without using cuticle oil on a regular basis (or at least that’s what my friends tell me lol) but cuticle oil / moisturizer is a good way to keep them hydrated. You can purchase cuticle oil anywhere, from the drugstore, to Walmart, to higher end stores like Ulta and Sephora. Additionally, a lot of indie polish makers make and sell cuticle oil / moisturizer as well!  Bonus Tip: Don’t cut your cuticles! If they are getting long, gently push them back with an orange stick.

2.       Protect your nails and you manis by wearing base and top coats! Have you ever had a mani that has completely stained your nails? Richly saturated colors can be notorious for never wanting to leave your nails, especially greens and blues, and one way to help protect your nails is with base coat. Base coat can also help if you have weak or brittle nails and are trying to grow them. My go-to base coat is OPI Nail Envy. Top coats can help to protect a mani, make it last longer, smooth out rough glitter looks and even improve drying time. I wear topcoat over ALL my manis; my go-to top coat is IMN Out The Door, similar quick drying top coats can be found at drugstores, beauty stores and online. Bonus Tip: If your quick drying topcoat is getting “stringy” try adding a thinning agent, such as Seche Restore to restore the consistency.

3.       Choose your nail polish remover wisely! In my mind, there are two main types of nail polish remover, acetone and non-acetone. Each of those has “sub-categories” for example, 100% acetone or strengthening non-acetone remover. While acetone remover gets the polish off quickly it also can dry out your nails, cuticles and skin super-fast, and we know that this leads to cracked skin and brittle nails. My recommendation for removing your standard polish would be any non-acetone remover. You can purchase these pretty much anywhere. I personally, use a strengthening non-acetone remover on a regular basis and stick to acetone or 100% acetone to remove manis under certain circumstances, such as hard to get off polish like glitter, or even removal of gel/shellac manis. Bonus Tip: Try the “Foil Method” to remove particularly stubborn manis.

Now that we know about nail care, let’s move on to my look. Victoria asked me to create something Minnesota inspired, and suggested maybe something with one of the sports teams (being from Pittsburgh, I do a lot of sports themed manis, although I have to admit, I have never done one for another team!) I decided to do something inspired by the Minnesota Golden Gophers team colors.

Polished Used:
-OPI - Nail Envy
-OPI - I'm Not Really A Waitress
-Essie - As Gold As it Gets
-Out The Door

This is a simple look that anyone can wear  to show support for the Golden Gophers. Adding a special effect topper can really change the look of a plain mani. Another fun thing to keep in mind is that there is no set rule for how many nails can be "accent nails"; as you can see, here I have done 2 and 2.

I hope you enjoyed my nail care tips and Minnesota themed mani! If you are interested in nail art, please feel free to stop by my blog, facebook page or Instagram to keep in touch! Finally, best of luck to Victoria and her new blog, and thanks for having me :)


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