DIY French Manicure

I love the clean look of a french manicure. But I don't love spending my limited free time (and babysitting allowance) sitting in a poorly-lit nail salon, getting shamed into a paraffin wax, callous remover, and flower on my toe. Now, I have lots of friends who relish the experience of a salon manicure. If that is the case, YOU GO GIRL. You walk your bad self to the salon and enjoy the pampering. This post is not for you.

If, However, you are in my camp, and you want a nice manicure but can think of 127 ways you would rather spend an hour and 30 bucks, then this post is for you.

On my last trip to Top Nails, I was on a mission to figure out how to do this for myself at home. I watched closely, and by golly, I think I have outsmarted the salon. Because for only $13 and a few minutes of my time, I got the same look while my kids were napping (and while I got to watch The Daily Show and think tawdry thoughts about Jon Stewart).

Here's what you need:

Opaque white nail polish (try Loreal, $2.49)
Pure acetone (try Supernail, $2.35 )
Clear top coat (try Loreal, $2.49)
Straight-edge brow brush (try Sally's Beauty Supply, $5.99)

Here's what you do:

1. Remove any old polish.
2. Brush a layer of white onto the tip of each nail. If needed, add a second coat.
3. Remove the cap from the acetone bottle and fill the cap halfway with acetone.
4. Using your flat-edged brush, create a clean line at the bottom of the white tip by brushing back and forth where your nail meets the nail bed.
5. Add top coat, and enjoy!

This technique may require a little practice, but after a few times it you will be rocking your own manicure from home!


  1. Love this. I do like the pampering of a pedicure but hate paying for a manicure since it just doesn't last as long.

    Gone our my days streaking the white nail polish across the tops of my nails.

    Maybe I will stop in at a Sally's next time I am around.

  2. I am so going to try this! But there is still the problem of doing anything with my left hand. My right had manicure is going to look horrible which is probably why I pay the money and spend my time. Hmm....

  3. I'm like Hali - great on the left, not so great on the right. Maybe I need to teach Mr. Penny how to paint nails...

  4. Popped over from We are that Family. I go to the salon because I have weak nails that I can't get to grow.
    But I have to say that I L.O.V.E the title of your blog. DH is trying to talk me in to a minivan when we have to trade in next spring. NEVER!! LOL

  5. Love this tip. My daughter loves French manicures and pedicures. Thanks for the suggestions on supplies. I can't wait to give this a try.

  6. Thanks for the tip! I'm going to try it this weekend.


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