Skip the salon and do your own nails with these affordable products.

By Erica Metzger
Updated September 22, 2020
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Heading to the salon to get a manicure used to not be a big deal. (Of course, the experience can definitely be a treat or something you do for a special occasion.) But now that we're experiencing a pandemic, and trying to stay home unless it's absolutely necessary, going to get our nails done isn't at the top of our to-do list. But just because you're not regularly seeing your technician doesn't mean you can't have nice nails. With the right products and practice, you can learn how to do your nails just how you want them. (In fact, you might like your handy work so much, you might just skip the salon forever and always go the DIY route.) Here are the four items you'll need to give yourself a beautiful manicure at home.

tinted base coat
Credit: Courtesy of Sephora

Tinted Base Coat

A base coat adds shine to bare nails but doesn't hide stains. Plus, the violet tint counteracts yellow tones. With biotin, green tea, sunflower seed oil, and vitamin E, you can apply this as a neutralizing base coat or wear alone for a perfected natural look.

nail renewal system
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Nail & Cuticle Care

This three-step treatment kit, developed by a dermatologist, is like a facial for your nails. It exfoliates and hydrates them, so they feel soft, smooth, and healthy. The longer you use it, the stronger your nails will be.

zoya serum
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Moisturizing Mist

Dry hands can lead to hangnails, so I love how this hydrating spray moisturizes without feeling greasy. The formula of moisture imparting hyaluronic acid and powerful antioxidants improves the look of hands, feet, and body.

essie gel polish
Credit: Courtesy of Ulta

Long-Wearing Polish

Need a durable polish that'll stand up to your busy schedule? Pair Essie's gel polish and gel top coat ($12, Ulta), and you'll have a tough-as-nails manicure that will outlast traditional polishes.


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