How to Make Your Hands Look Long and Slender
Beauty is all about optical illusions—making your hair look fuller, your lips look bigger, and your nose look smaller, all the while looking like you’ve done nothing at all. The same is true when it comes to hand and nail care. No-one wants stubby-looking hands, and unfortunately, the contouring trend has not yet spread to fingers. Thankfully there’s a better way, and celebrity manicurist Jill Thomas knows all the tricks. Scroll through to find out how to fake the appearance of hand-model hands!
Thomas says the process is threefold: Shape and length, cuticles, and colour. Not surprisingly, she says having some length to your nails will help. If your nails need a little push to get growing, Thomas recommends taking a supplement like Blackmores' Nails, Hair & Skin ($21), and using a treatment like CND’s RescueRXx Daily Keratin Treatment ($35) along with a nail hardener like Sally Hansen's Diamond Strength Nail Hardener ($17). “This method can take some time to see results, but it's worth it,” Thomas says.
“Oval or almond nails will definitely make your hands look longer and more slender, but again you need length for that,” Thomas says. “Always think length versus width. You want your nail to be longer than the widest point of the width.” As for filing, Thomas likes to round the edges and taper the nails in at the sides ever so slightly to make the nail beds appear longer.
Next up, cuticles. Three words: Push them back. “Not too hard, but once they're softened, you can get some extra length from the rear of the nail as well,” Thomas says. Soften them with a cuticle remover like Sally Hansen's 18k Gold Cuticle Eraser ($13), and gently push them back with a Cuticle Stick ($2 for a 4-pack). Just stay away from the cuticle scissors, which will inevitably leave the skin surrounding your nails red and irritated (not what we’re going for here).
John-Paul Pietrus for 7th Man
Colour choice makes a big difference. Thomas says the key is to avoid anything that’ll bring out the red in your skin tone. Instead, choose colours that complement your undertones. If you have warm, golden undertones, stay away from purples and greys, and opt for corals and warm reds (like OPI’s Red My Fortune Cookie, $20). If you have cooler, blue undertones, pick a cool red (like OPI’s Nail Lacquer, $20, in Malaga Wine) and stay away from turquoise shades.
Or go nude. Nudes elongate your nails, making them an extension of your fingers. Think light pinkish beige for fair and light skin tones, a more yellow-based taupe for medium skin tones, and a light caramel or toffee beige for dark and deep skin.
What’s your favourite nail-elongating colour? Share your shade in the comments below!