For avoiding hat hair: ‘Tis the season for beanies – and hair dents. To prevent flatness and cowlicks, part hair on the opposite side than you usually do. Flip back upon removing your headwear for volume.

For just-waxed arches: Want a quicker recovery after a brow waxing? Dab on a natural astringent (for example, witch hazel), and then an antiseptic lotion like Neosporin to ease irritation quickly.

For the best DIY mani: Painting your nails with an unpracticed hand can be tricky. Try to maneuver your dominant hand as it’s painted, holding the brush still in your non-dominant hand. Here’s some guidance.

By Susie Kostaras, Associate Content Editor

Know any lifesaving tips or tricks? Tweet us at @ruelala to share.

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November 17, 2014

mani_monday[1]

This manicure is a fun tribute to a beautiful and strong city: Boston. Whichever city you live in, follow the steps below to create your own skyline.

What You’ll Need:

 
The How-To:

  1. Paint your nails with two coats of white nail polish and let dry.
  2. Using the black nail art pen, draw the outline of buildings using vertical and horizontal rectangles, starting at the center of the nail. Do this for every nail except the thumbs.
  3. Draw scattered squares inside the “buildings” for the windows.
  4. Fill in the “buildings” (careful not to color in the “windows”).
  5. On the thumbs, write “I” and “Boston” (or your city of choice) using the black nail pen.
  6. With the red nail pen, draw a small heart in between the two words. Let dry.
  7. Finish with a clear top coat.

 
By Carolyn Schultz, Staff Writer

Want more mani how-tos? Check out our weekly Mani Monday column. 

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May 27, 2013

Mani---Main

Photo courtesy of Maggie Pageau.

Lisa Frank has some competition with these 90s-inspired nails. To tie-dye your tips, just follow the five simple steps below.

What You’ll Need:

  • White nail polish
  • Thin paintbrush
  • 4 – 5 bright nail colors
  • Paper towels
  • Nail polish remover
  • Clear top coat
  • Tie-dye inspiration

 
The How-To:

  1. Paint your nails with two coats of white polish and let dry completely.
  2. With the first bright nail color, use the paintbrush to make little circles in a swirl from the center of the nail to the edge (as shown above).
  3. Dip the paintbrush in nail polish remover and pat dry with paper towels.
  4. Repeat steps two and three with each of the different nail colors until you’re happy with the design.
  5. Finish with a clear top coat.

 
By Carolyn Schultz, Staff Writer

Want more mani how-tos? Check out our weekly Mani Monday column. 

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May 20, 2013

BLG_1466_mani_monday

When rainy days hit, brighten things up with this fun (and easy) DIY umbrella manicure. Follow the steps below to create your own.

What You’ll Need:

 
The How-To:

  1. Paint your nails with two coats of the grey polish and let dry completely.
  2. Below the tip of the nail, use the black nail pen to make the umbrella – draw multiple “W” shapes from left to right, then fill it in.
  3. Continuing with the black nail pen, draw a backwards “J” for the handle.
  4. Place a dot of blue nail polish on a piece of scrap paper.
  5. Dip the tip of the mechanical pencil into the polish and sporadically place dots on the nail to create the look of rain drops.
  6. Finish with a clear top coat.

 
By Carolyn Schultz, Staff Writer

Want more mani how-tos? Check out our weekly Mani Monday column. 

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May 13, 2013

mani_monday

Spring is upon us and we can’t let our feet have all the fun. Dazzle your tips with this DIY sneaker manicure – just follow the steps below.

What You’ll Need:

  • Colored nail polish (I used SEPHORA by OPI’s “Metro Chic”)
  • Sally Hansen’s Nail Art Pen, in both white and black
  • Clear top coat

 

The How-To:

  1. Paint your nails with two coats of the colored polish and let dry completely.
  2. Using the white nail pen, paint the tips of the nails (like a thick French manicure).
  3. Make the lace holes by placing eight dots on each nail with the black nail pen.
  4. Line the nail tips with the black nail pen to create the look of a Converse sneaker.
  5. With the white pen, connect the dots with diagonal lines to make the laces.
  6. Finish with a clear top coat.

By Carolyn Schultz, Staff Writer

Want more mani how-tos? Check out our weekly Mani Monday column. 

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May 6, 2013

photo (2)Photo courtesy of nailside

Stuck in an office and can’t always get outside for some fresh air?  Well, this cloud manicure is the perfect substitution for all you 9-to-5ers.

What You’ll Need:

  • Three nail polishes (any colors will do)
  • Clear top coat

The How-To:

  1. Paint your nails with two coats of the polish you would like for the base, and let dry completely.
  2. Using the second color, start on the right side of the nail and make a straight stroke from the center to the tip. To make the cloud shape, allow the polish to drip and form rounded edges at the start of the stroke.
  3. Once dry, repeat step 2 with the next nail color, leaving enough room to see the second color.
  4. Repeat step 2 a couple more times as you move to the left side of your nail. Make each stroke shorter than the one before.
  5. Finish by applying the clear top coat.
  6. Let the daydreaming commence.

By Carolyn Schultz, Staff Writer

Want more mani how-tos? Check out our weekly Mani Monday column. 

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April 29, 2013

Spring nails

Spring is officially here, and that means one thing: it’s time to break out those pastels. My favorite way to rock them? With a manicure, of course.

For a new take on pastel nails, I’m looking to a spring tradition of mine – dyeing eggs for the holidays. Check out a few egg patterns here and then follow the steps below to create your own egg-inspired manicure.

What You’ll Need:

The How-To:

  1. Paint each nail a different pastel color with two coats of polish.
  2. Apply a clear top coat and let dry completely.
  3. Using the Nail Art Pen, draw different designs and patterns on each nail. (Polka dots and squiggly lines are my favorites.)
  4. Finish with another application of the clear top coat.
  5. Show them off!

By Carolyn Schultz, Staff Writer

Have a manicure tip? Share in the comments below, or tweet us at @ruelala.

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March 25, 2013

Ombre Mani

Khloe Kardashian and Lauren Conrad helped make ombre hair a huge trend for 2012 and 2013, but some of us might not be ready to commit to dyeing our locks. Much like the carefree essence of the hairstyle, ombre nails are an even easier at-home project. Dip your tips into this trend with a DIY ombre manicure – just follow these steps.

What You’ll Need:

  • White nail polish
  • Three of your favorite colored nail polishes (I used butter LONDON’s “The Full Monty,” essie’s “turquoise & caicos,” and Milani’s “Dude Blue”)
  • Makeup sponges
  • Clear nail polish
  • Nail polish remover
  • Cotton swabs

The How-To:

  1. Paint two coats of white nail polish on your nails and let dry completely.
  2. Remove the tops of all three colored polishes.
  3. With your first color, paint a thin line on the angled part of the makeup sponge.
  4. Repeat step 3 for the other nail polish colors, as shown above. (Steps 3 and 4 should be done rather quickly, or the sponge will absorb too much polish.)
  5. Dab the nail with the painted sponge about 5 – 6 times (or until you achieve your desired color).
  6. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for each nail to achieve the best results.
  7. Apply a clear coat of polish.
  8. Remove excess polish from skin with nail polish remover and cotton swabs.

By Carolyn Schultz, Staff Writer

Have a manicure tip? Share in the comments below or tweet us at @ruelala.

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February 4, 2013