The Best Manicures for Small Hands

Show off well-groomed small hands.

Photo: Goodshoot/Goodshoot/Getty Images

Time spent enjoying a mani-pedi is the pièce de résistance of girlie indulgence. The massage, the hot oil and the expert gardening of those menacing, overgrown cuticles leave you spruced, sparkled and ready to face whatever seriousness or silliness steals your way. Even when your mitts are of the mini-size, show them off with a full-size manicure.

Nail Prep

After you’ve removed any polish from your nails, declaw by gently filing away the rough edges. Ensure your hands are dry before filing or you can split or shred the nails, and short, stubby nails on an already tiny gal just make her appear smaller. For your nail’s sake, file in only one direction or you’ll weaken the nails, rendering them as diminutive as your frame. Petite ladies should consider rounding the nails rather than squaring them as the round points elongate your fingers. Resist the temptation to grow super-long nails, lest they look unnatural at the end of your small phalanges.

Hands

Revel in the fact that you can immerse the majority of your hand in the bowl of warm, lotion-laden water. Whereas some ladies of larger stature can only soak their digits, you might be able to dunk the majority of your mitts. After your hands have soaked for about two minutes, remove them and apply oil to your cuticles. Using the flat end of an orange stick, gently push the cuticles back to lengthen the nail bed and encourage the nail to grow. Don’t snip at the cuticles or you’ll increase the possibility for infection. Rub lotion into your hands, forearms and elbows, treating yourself to a massage.

Show Off

After you’ve prepped the tips and mitts, it’s time to nail down the finished look. Either spray or swipe isopropyl alcohol on your nail beds to remove any oil or lotion residue. Nail polish won’t properly adhere to sticky or oily nails, so aim for a clean canvas. Choose the right polish for your goal. Going bold with bright pinks, reds, deep magentas or brown draws attention to the tips, making them appear all grown up. If you want the optical illusion of longer fingers, then a soft pastel provides an illusion of long, lovely hands.

At the Salon

When you can justify a mani in the weekly budget but aren’t pleased with your current salon, ask your like-sized friends where they go to have their tips trimmed and polished. An experienced manicurist will know how to show off your diminutive digits without making you look like your mini-me offspring or the aging doyenne sitting at the next station.

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