Pretty Nails

I absolutely love wearing nail varnish and having pretty nails. It makes me happy and puts a smile on my face. And when they’re all made up, I feel like a new woman, who would quite happily become royalty (a girl can wish, right?), just so that I could wave them elegantly at everyone as I passed them by.

Through the years, all forty of them now (!), I’ve always said my nails have been most probably the best part of my body!  When other parts give me cause to hide away under long or baggy layers, my nails have always been something I’m proud to show off.

Always, they’ve served me well, grown strong and long and with very little upkeep and maintenance required along the way. And I must say, along with probably saving me a fair bit of money in false nails, they’ve been fun.

It’s funny isn’t it how just the tiniest part of someone’s body, although very visible, can really give you such a boost of confidence when you need it. A lick of paint here, or even a cheeky manicure there, can do wonders to your mood.

I think the reasons are probably twofold. Firstly, they literally are an extension of your body, and although many of us out there have so many issues with our bodies, our nails are something than can always look good, whether that be the natural way or with a little helping hand. As soon as you have a fresh set of nails, I really feel it gives us such a boost of confidence, and almost an inner smugness and glow. Whenever I’ve left a nail bar, with beautiful new nails, I’ve immediately wanted to show them off. It’s silly I suppose, as they’re only nails, but they really do make a difference.


But secondly, perhaps the vast array of colour can actually lift our mood too. On dull grey days through winter, a pop of vibrant colour can really make you smile. Well, perhaps I speak for myself here, but I like to think so!

Plus, I suppose if there was a third point, they’re a great way of enabling us all to be who we want to be, if only just a hint. The perfect way to show a little personality and character.

Before I went on my holiday this year to Greece, unfortunately I‘d broken a fair few of my nails, (that’s what housework does to you! Thank goodness for our new cleaner!) so many were of such different lengths. I went to get my holiday nails all looking beautiful at the local nail bar, and asked if they could just add a couple of tips to make them all one length. The thing is, they said it would be better to use acrylic on all of them, as it would make more sense. So, having never had acrylics on before, I just nodded happily, and went with it.

Worst decision ever.

At the beginning they looked great (if a little brighter and more orange than I’d originally intended!), but wow, they didn’t feel as if they belonged to me! I really admire all these gorgeous ladies out there who have these put on religiously, but I must say I really didn’t get on with them one bit.

I was the ongoing joke on holiday, when my husband, our friends and I, would have a few little games of cards on our balconies with a bottle or two of wine before dinner, where I was just scrabbling to try and pick up the cards off the glass table! Looking back though , it was pretty funny, and at least it’s a memory we can laugh at now.

I know some lovely ladies out there absolutely swear by them, and good on them too, if it works for you, then brilliant. One of my friends is an absolute acrylic regular, and they always look fabulous on her, but she uses them religiously because she used to bite her nails, and over the years, they’ve kind of

But anyway, once I’d returned from holiday and got them taken off back in the salon, my strong, beautiful, natural nails underneath were no more. They are now papery thin, brittle, weak and all lumpy and bumpy. I was not a happy bunny. But hey, we live and learn right, and I’ve learnt that for me personally, this is something I won’t do again in the future, as I have (had!) perfectly good nails beforehand.

I’m hoping with a little TLC and perhaps some nail strengthening varnish, they will grow back again to how they were before. And perhaps I’ll stick to plain old varnish and gels in the future.


And in the meantime, I think I’ll just paint them myself at home, and give the poor things a bit of a rest!

I’m loving the vast array of beautiful new Autumnal colour options out there on all the shop shelves at the moment too. Such stunning and striking colours in every shade, hue and variety you can imagine.

And I picked up a lovely Max Factor colour the other day, in Dusky Rose, which I wore for my 40th birthday party. It’s a really pretty pinky red, with a metallic sheen to it which is so stylish right now too.  The only problem is that it doesn’t seem to last very long. Still pretty though.

And to bring just a little colour to your lives at the moment where the skies are a bit on the grey and dull side, here are some others I have my eye on….



Topshop  |  O.P.I @ John Lewis  |  Smith & Cult @ SpaceNK  |  Nars

love steph


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