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Filing nails seems trivial. Isn't it enough to take a file in your hand and just go to sawing? It turns out not. If you do not follow a few rules and choose the wrong file, you will achieve a poor result. In addition, there is a risk that you will damage your nails. What to do to prevent this from happening? Check out the tips below that will dispel all doubts!

Learn the 7 most important rules of filing nails

How to file your nails so as not to get tired and damage your nails? It is enough to follow a few rules. 

  1. Do not file wet nails. They are flexible, which makes it difficult to give them the desired shape.
  2. Avoid sawing in the air. It's best to do it on hard ground. Otherwise, a simple activity will turn into good gymnastics. Why make your life difficult?
  3. Choose one sawing direction (especially if you're using a metal file). This way you will avoid damaging your nails.
  4. Remember to hold the file correctly. It should be placed perpendicularly to the nail plate, at an angle of 45°.
  5. Get a suitable file.
  6. Wash your hands thoroughly after you finish filing your nails. Thanks to this, you can easily assess whether any corrections are necessary.
  7. Do not forget about the correct order. First sawing, then soaking, cleaning and peel.

The above rules are universal. It is worth following them, regardless of whether you are wondering how to file nails into squares or are interested in those of other shapes. 

Buying a nail file - what to pay attention to?

Among the rules mentioned above, there is one that talks about choosing the right file. Let's get to the details, because when looking for an answer to the question of how to file nails, this is an extremely important issue.


Have you noticed that there are mysterious numbers on the packaging of nail files? Don't underestimate them. They talk about the type of granularity that should be taken into account when choosing the right product. Why? The finer the grit, the sharper the file is, because the gradation is the number of grits per 1 cm² of the file surface.

Gradation 80-100 are files called coarse-grained, which are primarily used to remove tips and other materials. If you are unfamiliar with using accessories of this grit you should be careful as they are sharp. 

Classic files, which are the most popular and you can get them in any drugstore, are those with 100-180 grit. They are described as medium-grained and used to work with the natural nail plate, as well as gel or acrylic.

There are also fine-grained files (240-500 grit) for smoothing the natural nail plate and final treatment of the gel. There are also those that are called "polishers". They have the smallest grain, so they are intended for leveling and dulling the natural nail plate.  


What you should use a particular file for also depends on its shape. The one that is simple will be useful for shortening your nails and giving them the desired shape. 

On the other hand, if you need a file that will reach hard-to-reach places and make it easier to work with cuticles, you should reach for the banana-shaped one. You can also buy a boat-shaped file, which is a combination of this simple and banana-shaped file. It is very versatile and will come in handy when you do your own manicure. 

In addition to straight, banana and boat-shaped files, there are cube-like files on sale. This shape is most often used for polishing blocks used for leveling unevenness and matting. 


Metal, paper or maybe glass? What are the differences between files made of specific materials?

Metal files were the first to appear on the market. They used to be very popular, but now they have been replaced by products made of other materials. The main reason was that metal files damaged the nail plate and required constant disinfection.

What to replace a metal file with? It all depends on your needs. If you are looking for one that is suitable for home use, is gentle and precise, a glass file is a good choice. Also pay attention to it when you are wondering how to file short nails without worrying about cracking and splitting them. 

You can also choose paper files, which are very popular. No wonder, since they are durable, versatile, and at the same time cheap. They can be used both at home and in beauty salons. This is due to the fact that they are suitable not only for the natural nail plate, but also for filing acrylic or gel. 

How to file nails to get the desired shape?

You already know how to properly file your nails and what to look for when choosing a nail file. Therefore, the question remains how to get the desired shape? How to file nails into tonsils , squares, etc. and in what situations a particular shape works best?

If the nails are exposed to mechanical damage (e.g. due to the nature of your work), think about a universal oval shape. How to get it? It's not complicated - just file your nails in the shape of the fingertips. 

Do you have slender and long fingers, and besides, do you like fancy stylizations? Then it's worth learning how to file nails into squares , which are perfect for this situation. To get this shape, you should evenly file the sides of the nails, and then model their edge so that it has the form of a straight line.

The latest hit is almond-shaped nails. They are a good way to slim your fingers. How to file nails for tonsils ? Start by marking the center of the sawing boundary. Then file the side edges of the nail (at an angle of 45°) and slightly round the tip. 

Now that you know the secrets of filing nails, you know what to look for when buying a file and how to get the desired shape, all you have to do is file your nails. With such knowledge, you will easily achieve a beautiful effect, and at the same time you will not damage your nails.

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