The Emergency Mani

Double Photo Test

It’s an all too often occurrence for me. A jacked-up, chips-ahoy paint job and only five minutes on the clock to rectify it. No time to start afresh and no nail polish remover in reach – who you gonna call? Manibusters. It’s a position I found myself in last Friday in the middle of a packed train station, en route to see my parents for the weekend. So I dropped down, made the best of what beauty bumf I had packed and whipped out an emergency nail job that saw me through till Sunday evening. All without a top coat in sight…

Step 1: It’s a step that always makes me feel a little naughty while completing, but the only way to wave goodbye to those chips temporarily and speedily is to re-paint over with another coat; concentrating on filling any grown-out cuticle gaps and worn-out tips. Nice. If it’s possible make sure the nail is clean and free from any oils and grime which will help your botched-up mani last that day longer.

Step 2: Whittling the process right down here, I’m imaging that a bottle of Seche Vite has evaded your bag – NOOO! – as it had mine. So I reached for the old school polish dryer, water. One glug, decanted into the lid and each nail dipped into the well for as long as you’ve got before your train arrives. Done.

Step 3: Given that we’re sans top coat, there’s a high chance that some kind of devoted cuticle product isn’t going to be swimming around in the depths of your luggage, so I propose lip balm as a welcomed alternative. One swipe across the base of your nail, massaged in does the job and leaves the end result looking like a polished, ‘this took a whole hour’ job.

And hey if I can manage it on a commuter-filled platform, while juggling eating a Calippo (it was hiding behind my suitcase) and with just one bottle of nail polish scuffing around in my bag, I reckon the emergency mani can be completed just about anywhere and everywhere. Just ignore the stares.