By Stephanie Ila Silver-Silberstein

The summer isn’t even a third of the way through and I’ve needed to get a manicure and pedicure at least once a week! It’s out of control. Despite my supply of cotton balls and nail polish remover and an assortment of nail polish (so old the oil has now settled on top), my attempts to prolong the life of my mani-pedi at home inevitably result in disaster. Fortunately, I’ve found some professional, quality tools and products to assist me when taking matters into my own (less than perfectly manicured) hands.

Start Me Up Nail Kit from the Lippmann Collection

The Start Me Up Nail Kit from celebrity manicurist Deborah Lippmann comes in a cute carrying case ideal for travel (including your carry on luggage) and contains all of your nail care essentials: a “Smooth Operator” 4-sided nail buffer, lanolin cuticle remover, jojoba and vitamin E-based cuticle oil, 2-second nail primer for chip-free nails, rehydrating base coat with aloe, “Baby Love” pink, quick drying nail polish and “On a Clear Day” top coat. Your nails will be healthy, strong and looking great after one use!

Perfect Formula – The Perfect French Manicure Kit

Add some Oo la la onto your hands and feet with the Perfect French Manicure Kit from Perfect Formula – Essentials for Perfect Nails. In a convenient and compact carrying case, you’ll find their Bright Base Coat (which brings out the natural color in your nails), an easy to use French Tip Wand and a High Gloss Sealer. In 3 easy steps, you’ll have a professional caliber French Manicure (without the annoying surcharge).

The Body Shop Manicure Tools

The Body Shop is known for carrying all essential beauty tools for the body – hands and feet obviously included. Their manicure set comes in a small travel-sized case and includes stainless steel nail scissors, miniature nail clippers, and a two-way nail cleaner/cuticle pusher. And if you’d like your tools a la carte, try their Big Nail Shiner (so effective you won’t need polish), Double Sided Foot File or Wooden Foot File.

Tweezerman Manicure Kit

Tweezerman, the beauty tool experts, has ‘been there, done that’ for your eyebrows, so now they’re after your hands and feet. The new Nail Rescue Kit – three miniature nail essentials housed in one chic, portable travel case – includes a Pushy Cuticle Pusher; a one-of-a-kind Snipper, ergonomically designed with angled ultra-sharp tips for hard-to-reach cuticles; and a convenient metal Nail File for smoothing and shaping nails to a perfect finish. Carry it around in your purse for the on-the-go nail emergencies you (and your beau) encounter.

And what good are cuticle-free nails when your feet are so rough they could replace your nail file? Try the Pedro Too Callus Remover. Its ergonomic design fits perfectly in the palm of your perfectly manicured hands (and comes in funky colors too).

ACE Performance Grooming for Men

I don’t know about the man in your life, but mine continuously refuses my offer to give him a much-needed manicure and pedicure- even if it means sacrificing the foot rub part of the deal! Well, perhaps he’ll be more amenable if I use the products from ACE – Performance Grooming for Men. Their fingernail and toenail clippers, nail file pick and nail brush are all designed specifically for men. It won’t be long before he starts begging for a MANicure!

With these travel-friendly nail care tools and products, you can wear those flip flops with confidence. And just think, you can actually see your friends more than your manicurist this summer!

Originally published July 2009
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