I love switching things up in the nail department as much as the next girl, but when the average mani only lasts a couple of days, you have to take matters into your own hands... pun intended. Now I'll be the first to admit that sometimes I just can't be bothered to put in the work to stop my nails from mad chipping, but when time is on my side, so are these four steps. So if you want to make your favourite shade last just a little bit longer (but hate the idea of gel polish), here's a good placee to start:
GET BUFF — Once your nails are clean and bare, gently buffing the surface can really help your polish stick to your nails. But be warned: Too much buffing and your precious digits will pay the price. Stick to about twice a month at most to avoid damage.
CLEAN UP YOUR ACT — Once your nails are nicely buffed, go over them with a little nail polish remover to get rid of any residue. Skipping this step will prevent you from getting the best possible result, so, well, don't.
BUILD YOUR BASE — This step is the biggest pain in the butt, and definitely the one I skip the most, but using a base coat can go a long way towards making your manicure last and giving your polish a nice, even surface to adhere to. Plus it helps keep your nails from yellowing (one of the many joys of excessive polishing).
PUT YOUR TOP ONLast but certainly not least, try using a gel top coat like this one from Dior. It's my absolute fave because it makes my nails look super shiny and gel-like, plus it makes my polish last twice as long. A reader once told me that she didn't care for this one, so if it's not for you, find a top coat you love and stick with it... Your nails (and the people looking at your Instagram feed) will thank you.

Photos by Mr. AiF