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How to: Get an Engagement Ring-Worthy Manicure

Mon, 3 December 2012 5:29PM

Primpers, this Monday brings about some rather big and fabulous news ….

I’m engaged!

And although it’s officially been less than 30 hours since it happened, I’ve already been asked when and where we are getting married, where we plan to honeymoon, what my dress will look like and how I’m wearing my hair. I’m still yet to drag myself down from cloud nine, so pretty much all I can manage at the moment is figuring out the colour I want to paint my nails next.

Yes, ‘tis true, the first thing people do is look at your hand, ask for an instant picture message or request a diary date so they can see the sparkler IRL, stat.

Luckily at the time of the proposal I did have a fresh manicure thanks to Ciaté Paint Pot in Beach Melba, $22, Mecca Cosmetica, a glossy and pretty pale pink. So bridal. But now that I’ve had time to think about it, I’m changing my mani up yet again to something a little more bold.

Here’s one of my favourite shades from Estée Lauder’s new Red Haute Collection (romantically inspired by Paris) appropriately titled Love Bite, $38, from department stores. It’s a rich and deep almost-berry pink, and I can’t get over the striking contrast between the bright platinum band and the sparkling diamond.

Now that I’ve got this beautiful engagement ring sitting pretty upon my left hand, it’s time for a refresher in creating a flawless, long-lasting manicure …

  • When you’re wearing bold colours – and let’s be honest, pale ones, too – short, neat nails look best. Begin by filing your nails into a square shape, ensuring that the sides are straight. Then get on to filing the top, we recommend leaving them no longer than just over the top of your nail. Gently round the corners off, ensuring you don’t file the tips.
  • Then add a nail primer. Not only does it remove any excess dirt or grime, it creates a clean nail bed before you start applying polish. Try Orly Primetime, $18.95, 1300 769 355.
  • Apply your base coat and leave it to dry. Base coat is crucial when wearing a deep nail polish colour as they can stain your nail bed if you don’t, so if you want to switch up your nail colour quite often (like I plan to), make sure you apply it. It also helps to get your nail polish to stay put, too.
  • Wait for at least 10 minutes to apply your nail polish to prevent air bubbles. Normally you would want to start painting as close to your cuticle as possible to create the perfect shape, however I suggest placing the brush a little further back from the base of your nail. Then push the brush in a downwards motion, getting the brush as close to your cuticles as possible so the bristles fan outwards, following the shape of your nail bed so it leaves a clean edge. Not only does it prevent polish staining your cuticles, it also ensures a smooth, even finish.
  • Apply one to two coats of colour, depending on the formulation. I’ve found that two coats of Love Bite gives a fresher, more finished look, without leaving any streaks. The whole point of a bold colour is to give off that strong, almost gel-like appearance.
  • Always, always finish with a high-shine top coat. Not only does it make your nail polish last longer and better the look of your bold, splash of colour, but it also sets off sparkler – engagement ring or cocktail ring. My go-to? Sally Hansen Diamond Shine Base and Top Coat, $16.45, from Priceline. They don’t call it diamond shine for nothing!
  • And if you love a little bit of nail art, you can always set off your ring finger with a hint of glitter. I love the silver sparkles called Sugar Sprinkle, from ELES’ Sweet Sundae collection, $20, ELES

What do you think of a bold colour as a bridal nail polish?

Do you love this shade?

How do you get your manicure to last and last?

Hayley x

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31 Comments

  • Posted by: bluebird Master Fan // Mon, 3 December 2012 06:43pm

    Congratulations Hayley! Your ring is stunning.
    I like both, the pale peach and the bold berry and I think almost any colour can become a bridal mani..but then I love most colours on nails!

  • Posted by: glossed Master Fan // Mon, 3 December 2012 06:52pm

    Congratulations Hayley! Beautiful ring and the mani really sets it off! Love your colour choices as always!

  • Posted by: misschris Master Fan // Mon, 3 December 2012 07:03pm

    Congrats Hayley, what a beautiful ring!
    I love the bold berry, so bright and bold. But I would be more of a pale pink as I don’t like much colour on my nails.

  • Posted by: melg Master Fan // Mon, 3 December 2012 07:19pm

    Love that shade, butter london does a really nice one called Queen Vic that I wear almost weekly. And what an amazing ring!

  • Posted by: matty Enthusiast // Mon, 3 December 2012 08:15pm

    Congratulations Hayley! I love that Ciate Beach Melba but Love Bite is strikingly stunning.

  • Posted by: Coconal Master Fan // Mon, 3 December 2012 08:58pm

    Biggest congratulations, Hayley! You guys are so cute together and thank you so much for sharing this with your readers!

    The ring is gorgeous and so are both manicures!

  • Posted by: Tina-1291133452 Master Fan // Mon, 3 December 2012 11:06pm

    congratulations hayley :) i am soooo happy for you :) wish you a fab life together :) LOVE the ring and your nails! xx

  • Posted by: meedee Master Fan // Tue, 4 December 2012 12:04am

    How exciting…..Do we all get an invite to the wedding?..hehe
    Im sure we will…via pics :)

  • Posted by: lolo Master Fan // Tue, 4 December 2012 01:44am

    Oh Hayley, Congratulations! That must be the best feeling in the world :) Your nails are always stunning, great skin too! Your ring is absolutely beautiful, such a lucky woman you are, thanks for a exciting and informing post :)

  • Posted by: Sparkles17 Master Fan // Tue, 4 December 2012 09:35am

    Love the Beach Melba shade its just gorgeous so very perfect for the occasion!
    Love the ring its stunning! Congrats!

  • Posted by: daylight dancer Master Fan // Tue, 4 December 2012 10:54am

    Congrats hayley.
    I think i bold colour would look great against the back drop of your wedding dress. The love bite would look great! Your nails look so fab here. Love your ring too!

  • Posted by: CandiH Devotee // Tue, 4 December 2012 11:06am

    Congrats on your engagement your ring is spectacular and as for the bridal mani, I really like both colours.

  • Posted by: beautybee1 Master Fan // Tue, 4 December 2012 12:34pm

    Woo hoo Hayley! Congratulations – and what a gorgeous ring. I prefer pale colours for weddings but that’s just me. Whatever you choose, I’m sure it will look fabulous.

  • Posted by: Angela Huang // Tue, 4 December 2012 01:58pm

    I have been waiting for my boyfriend to propose for agess…. so I immediately went out to Kit and bought myself the Melba Peach shade! It’s gorgeous! Great pick Hayley!

  • Posted by: karleymichelle Enthusiast // Wed, 5 December 2012 08:39am

    CONGRATS!!!!
    Your ring and mani look stunning!!!!
    Bold colour is a great choice :)

  • Posted by: loopylexy Master Fan // Wed, 5 December 2012 11:14am

    Congratulations!! Beautiful ring and love the manicure. Also, I actually dreamt of Sugar Sprinkle last night, I think it’s a sign I need it in my life pronto.

  • Posted by: PrettyPrincess Master Fan // Wed, 5 December 2012 01:48pm

    Congrats Hayley!

    FOr nails, I think keep nail art to a minimum and go for solid colours, its is about the ring after all!

  • Posted by: MissJo Devotee // Wed, 5 December 2012 05:29pm

    Congratulations!!!! That is wonderful news and your ring is TDF!
    I like the bold colour for engagement, but I kinda like the Melba for a wedding as it is not detracting attention from the dress and the rings.
    All I know is you are going to make one beautiful bride, sincerely. x

  • Posted by: lovefashionangel Master Fan // Thu, 6 December 2012 03:35pm

    I love the pale pink it looks very elegant with your stunning ring. I am not one that can make my manicure last, usually by the next day i will have ruined it.

  • Posted by: Hayley Bennett Enthusiast // Thu, 6 December 2012 05:05pm

    Thank you so much everyone! Your comments have been so lovely to read. I’ll keep you all in the loop with what I decide! x

  • Posted by: DebstarDesigns Master Fan // Mon, 10 December 2012 04:07pm

    LOVE IT! I’m a big fan of statement nails and the way I get mine to last (without having to visit a nail salon) is by painting them with a layer of a fast drying top coat every day!

  • Posted by: Tahlz68 Enthusiast // Thu, 13 December 2012 01:26pm

    Woohoo! Beautiful ring for a beautiful girl!!

  • Posted by: Tahlz68 Enthusiast // Thu, 13 December 2012 01:26pm

    Woohoo! Beautiful ring for a beautiful girl!!

  • Posted by: Jaimi Enthusiast // Fri, 1 February 2013 01:20pm

    Congratulations, I just got engaged before Christmas and loving new nail polish looks to complement my ring. Will definitely try both those colours.

  • Posted by: Michelle-1343378350 Devotee // Mon, 18 March 2013 06:19pm

    Congrats!! I always base and top coat but primer?? Is it really necessary? Never even heard of it before.

  • Posted by: missselin Master Fan // Fri, 5 April 2013 02:49pm

    That pale pink is gorgeous!!

  • Posted by: diva89 Master Fan // Thu, 18 April 2013 09:22pm

    congratsss!!! :)

  • Posted by: diva89 Master Fan // Thu, 18 April 2013 09:23pm

    i love that nail polish shade- i must buy it:)

  • Posted by: thecatwhosawstars Master Fan // Wed, 5 June 2013 10:53am

    Estée Lauder’s Love Bite s a stunning shade.

  • Posted by: jessica88 Master Fan // Wed, 19 June 2013 09:50pm

    Congratulations, your ring is gorgeous. I love both nail colours.

  • Posted by: talkalot Master Fan // Sun, 17 November 2013 07:42pm

    I think a bold colour could work for a bridal polish.