Here is another addition to the series discussing how to shape the nail free edge. I have previously covered, taking down length, square shape, oval shape, and the files I prefer to use (links below).
If you missed the other posts.
1. Become familiar with different nail shapes and what free edge nail shape suits your nail bed shape here.
2. You need the right nail file for the job. Here I discuss what I prefer and why.
3. Even if you are not interested in certain free edge nail shapes I recommend you peruse the following posts for general useful advice:
Taking down nail length
Sealing the nail plate
Personally, I prefer the squoval shape on my hands and nail bed so I am uber excited about going back to this shape :)
As always lets look at what I started with and the finished look of the nail.
Pardon the scratched up surface, the file slipped in this long night of filing from square to oval to squoval!
The before nail on the left is round/oval shaped, at least my best version of such since I have a pretty high C-curve on that particular nail.
The squoval has rounded corners and a semi-flat to flat top, depends on your preference I guess.
So to go from one to the other you just need to make the top less oval/round like by filing straight across in one direction with your file of choice. My file of choice is 320 for thick hard nails or a 400 file for thin weak nails.
If you are going from square to squoval, just round the corners, as pictured.
Start with the file at a 45 degree angle and file from corner to middle. By bringing the file perpendicular to the nail at the end of the sweep you can achieve a more flat top tip while keeping the corners rounded.
Thus far this series of posts have showed how to file a healthy nail free edge into different shapes. If your nails are problematic, peeling, cracking, chipping, etc you will need to be careful with the types of files you use to shape, i.e. the higher the grit (the more fine) the better in order to prevent further nail plate damage. I will however, do a proper post later.
After you have shaped your nails free edge, you will want to seal it after taking off the polish. This will be the next and final post in the series and can be found here.
What shape do you like best on your nails?