the never ending nail polish battle

Posted: December 21st, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: beauty | Tags: , | 14 Comments »

I have a confession to make: I can’t wear nail polish for more than 24 hours. I must be extremely anxious, or neurotic, or just a nitpicker, but for whatever reason, I begin picking off the nail polish within 24 hours after applying a fresh coat. Seriously, it’s disgusting. At any given time, there are little pieces of pink or red (or purple or white) polish chips on the ground beneath me. It’s quite sad because I have a thing with OPI nail polishes – I really, really like buying them!

Picture 11
photo: cheshir

Is it just me? Why is it so hard just to LEAVE IT BE? Let it be pretty? The thing is, I’m a perfectionist, so if one gets messed up even a hair, I have to start over. If I’m not in a place with polish remover and polish, I’ll just chip it all away, often tearing at the layers of my nails. It’s really cool to watch (yea right). On top of that, I’m also impatient (though I try). I can’t wait to let it dry because there is always something that is more important – I want to make the bed, fold the laundry, bake something, read something, fluff something, pet something, whatever – and my nails always look crackpipealicious afterwards.

This is just one small part of my lifelong troubled relationship with my nails. My entire childhood I was a dedicated nail-biter, despite repeated efforts by my family (and myself) to get me to stop. Once I even bought that stuff “No Bite” or whatever it is called, from the drugstore. I remember putting it on before going to the county fair and picking it all off (even with my teeth – despite its horrible taste) before I got home. My poor Stepmom Stella even bought me a fancy little manicure kit when I was younger, thinking the right supplies for perfect nails would be incentive enough to stop biting my nails. No dice.

It wasn’t until high school that I grew my nails out for the first time EVER. I remember sitting in Physics class looking at my thumbnail which had grown longer than the tip of my finger. That was a first! I was SO proud. It didn’t last. Eventually, my Mom took me to get acrylics… what a disaster that was. Expensive, and disgusting. After several rounds of “filling,” tearing them off, getting another full set, refilling, and tearing them off again, I vowed never to put that nastiness on my hands again. So gross. I was going to have to learn to have pretty nails on my own.

Eventually, I trained myself to not bite my nails. Willpower was really the only thing I can attribute to my success. Yet I still do it from time to time; I tend to go months alternating between biting and non-biting. It’s a nervous habit, something I do when I’m reading, watching movies, basically anytime I’m not using my hands to do something.

Right now, they’re short but in the process of growing out. I want them to look nice for Christmas and Valentine’s Day and all other days of the year, but still keeping them short because I live on a keyboard what with being a professional blogger and all (I love saying that, btw, I’m a professional blogger. What now?), and having long nails that prohibit me from reaching keys is a bad idea.

Manicures might be an obvious choice, and they do work, matter of fact getting a manicure has been the only thing that keeps a coat of nail polish on my nails for more than 2 days at a time. That being said, I’m a frugalista and I’m not paying $15 (plus tip) for someone to paint my nails when there are starving people half a mile away. That is NOT one of the things I allow myself to splurge on.

Tell me- how do you keep from picking away at your nails?


14 Comments on “the never ending nail polish battle”

  1. 1 Julian Smith said at 6:20 pm on December 21st, 2009:

    I know I’ve told you this before, but my childhood nail-biting story is almost 100% identical to yours. My parents even bought me that No-Bite stuff you were talking about. Ick!

    Girrrrrrl! I’mma start slappin’ yo hand when I see you chewin’ on ‘em!

  2. 2 guitar princess said at 9:01 pm on December 21st, 2009:

    I have the same problem, SO…when i paint my nails, i pout on like 5 coats per nail, so that when i try to pick at my nails, it takes FOREVER to get the polish off, so i just give up! haha
    this probably wasn’t that helpful, but i gave it a shot! :)

  3. 3 Sarah said at 9:15 pm on December 21st, 2009:

    Oh my gosh that is hilarious! Sadly, I will keep going as long as it takes to get it off – even if I’m tearing up my nails at the same time. Awful, I know. But maybe I’ll try it out – I’m desperate!

  4. 4 Sarah said at 9:15 pm on December 21st, 2009:

    If you had any idea how many people have tried to slap my hands away from my mouth…

  5. 5 Mili said at 7:30 am on December 22nd, 2009:

    people have that kind of “problems” all arround the world! i stoped biting my nails cause my fingers didn’t loog girly at all and i wanted to be a girly-girl (not that i’m now, sadly). as i peel off all the nail polish i just buy a cheap one, if not i spend a looooot of money, and i always carry on mu purse a nail polish, cause i have no paint on them i just keep biting, and in my case the more layer of polish i have the easier to peal off it is! it just cames out alone! maybe it’s beacause of the cheap polish, hahaha

  6. 6 Sarah said at 9:33 am on December 22nd, 2009:

    Carrying nail polish is such a good idea – I really need to do that! My girlfriend Lauren does that and will whip out her bottle anyplace anytime, even if it stinks to high heaven. Thanks for the tip Mili girl. ;)

  7. 7 ZIBA BENNETT said at 10:12 am on December 22nd, 2009:

    I have the same problem, so what I do is….I just DON’T paint my nails anymore. I keep them short. looks much neater and clean than having chipped polish. Now that I’ve gone so long without, it feels funny when I DO paint my nails (my nails feel…hard and unflexible? I mean, the nails harden along with the polish, and feel more breakable, which is odd since most polishes claim to protect them from breaking). I pick at my cuticles all day long, until they bleed sometimes, that is my bad habit!

  8. 8 theoneinpink » A Photo Booth Trip Down Memory Lane said at 9:44 pm on December 22nd, 2009:

    [...] of my enormous Crumbs birthday cupcakes that I ate… out of about 30. (P.S. Further proof of my love-hate relationship with nail polish in this [...]

  9. 9 The Smiths Are Here. » Big News! said at 11:33 pm on January 31st, 2010:

    [...] I’ve finally found the solution for not picking your nail polish off. Get a big honkin’ diamond on your finger so everyone wants to take pictures of it and look at [...]

  10. 10 theoneinpink » Blog Archive » If Tomorrow Was My Birthday… said at 10:03 am on June 23rd, 2010:

    [...] until a few years ago. Most of the time, I can restrain myself, but I have a wicked bad habit of picking off my nail polish when I paint them myself. The only way I’ve found to combat this filth is by getting [...]

  11. 11 theoneinpink » Blog Archive » my one year blogiversary said at 10:46 am on July 23rd, 2010:

    [...] the never ending nail polish battle [...]

  12. 12 theoneinpink » Blog Archive » things i love thursday said at 1:17 pm on August 19th, 2010:

    [...] Like Linen polish…. even though I picked it all off after two days, I also just bought Ballet Slippers and Island Hopping and I love them, too! | [...]

  13. 13 Mona Nomura said at 3:16 pm on August 21st, 2010:

    Confession: I bite my nails too. So gross. I’m pretty disgusted by myself too.

    So I was picking my nails and decided to do a search and ta-daaaaaaa: I found it! Duuuuuuude I have the same flippin’ problem, I know EXACTLY what you are talking about. Found myself nodding in agreement as I read through the entire post. Word for word.

    Hey, question. Did you ever put a glob of Elmer’s on your hand and pulled it all off when it dried? Do you get satisfaction when you peel a chunk of polish, instead of chipping? This isn’t an informercial but it sounds like one haha. I’m also looking for a solution, too. Love that comment about carrying around a bottle.

    Wow, did I really write this all out? Am I even coherent? Who cares. Happy Saturday and see you later, alligator!

  14. 14 Sarah said at 3:26 pm on August 21st, 2010:

    haha! I love that you came back and found this. The only thing about this post that has changed since I wrote it is that I actually do splurge on manicures now. I found out my husband loves the way nails look painted (girls nails, anyway) and so I try to keep them nice looking for him. I’m a good wife.

    And yes, I totally did that with Elmer’s glue. I was just telling someone about that recently!


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