Painting tiny/odd toe nails

#1
Hi everyone. I have to say, I’m losing the will to go on atm as it seems I can’t do much right these days. And believe me I’m trying!
So, today I did a spa pedicure for a lovely lady but her toe nails weren’t the best. Very tiny and a bit mis-shapen. Big toe nails had both fallen off last year and had now grown back but literally only to the hyponychium with no free edge. Other toes had a thin sliver of nail.
The lady had seemed happy at the time but has since complained to the salon owner that she thought the paint job was no good. ‘Messy and patchy’ in her words although I’m not entirely sure what I could have done different. I went round the edge of each nail with an alcohol tipped brush to tidy up before curing.
Is there anything else you guys would recommend to improve the appearance of those kind of nails when painting them?
(I’ve messaged her and apologised, offered to re-do them but no reply. )
 

Scrubadub

Well-Known Member
#2
Did you take any pics?
 

#3
Did you take any pics?
I didn’t I’m afraid. The only partial image I have is from the screenshot message the salon owner sent me.
 

Scrubadub

Well-Known Member
#4
I didn’t I’m afraid. The only partial image I have is from the screenshot message the salon owner sent me.
Hard to say from that pic but that toe looks ok.

How do you feel you did? Were you happy with the finish you did considering the circumstances?
 

#5
I think it looks okay! I had this problem a few weeks ago- I had 2 people complain to my manager about the finish. Happy to pay, happy when they left but later on said they weren’t happy. My manager said couldn’t find much fault and to just keep practising. It does put a downer on everything though
 

#6
Nobody pays much attention to their toes until the sun is out. I find if you explain the nail condition to clients, how it may impact the results you can achieve and that you will do your best then they are generally happier with the results.
 

#7
Thanks guys. She did send pics to me later in the evening and, to be fair, they weren’t great. The only reason I can think for the poor job was that the area where I was performing the pedi was poorly lit and I was also in my own light so causing a shadow as I was bent over her feet. I have apologised and offered a re-do, a refund or a reduced fee off her next treatment but she’s gotten quite off with me and just demanded a refund with a bit of a passive aggressive message about having to get them redone elsewhere when she has time. Has left me feeling proper fed up tho. ‍
 

RosieR

Well-Known Member
#8
I am sorry that you have had your confidence shattered. It happens to all of us.
Only as good as the last treatment is a constant worry. It shows you care.
I had a few problems with accuracy when I was painting nails in poor light
However you have identified that has been a cause.
I also found that my 20/20 vision began to let me down. I had some cheap glasses that magnified probably more than I needed but I got the precision back. I honestly didn’t think I needed them.
Don’t know if you need specs but I didn’t think it was necessary.
Just the thought crossed my mind.
I hope you are having better luck .
 

Titleist

The illest Pro V1x
#9
Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.
 

CFBS

Well-Known Member
#10
This sounds like a difficult client so I wouldn't take it to heart. She probably does it to everyone and probably to her hairdresser too!
I have several clients with teeny tiny or naff little toe nails. All my clients are much more 'normal' than your lady and will usually say something like "just do what you can with the little toe!" - so all good humoured and know the situation.

However, here are some tips you might be able to use for future tricky toes:
  • Make sure you get the cuticle well back to expose as much nail as possible
  • Remove ridges with buffers to get the nail really smooth (polish will look better if on a smooth nail)
  • If using normal polish, apply so that you get colour on every bit of the nail allowing it to go into the cuticle area, cap the nail and onto the free edge skin - then wipe away (with acetone on a cotton bud) the unwanted polish on the skin.
  • If you are doing gel polish then I can recommend using Lecente Smooth It (after base coat and before colour). This really helps to build a more sturdy nail which will not bend and loose the polish.
Hope this might help!
 

#11
I am sorry that you have had your confidence shattered. It happens to all of us.
Only as good as the last treatment is a constant worry. It shows you care.
I had a few problems with accuracy when I was painting nails in poor light
However you have identified that has been a cause.
I also found that my 20/20 vision began to let me down. I had some cheap glasses that magnified probably more than I needed but I got the precision back. I honestly didn’t think I needed them.
Don’t know if you need specs but I didn’t think it was necessary.
Just the thought crossed my mind.
I hope you are having better luck .
Very good point, to be fair. I recently had my eyes tested as I’m generally short sighted but have noticed that I’m needing to wear my glasses more recently for watching TV, etc. Turns out I need a “slight” prescription for closer up vision as well as distance vision so hopefully some new specs are going to help matters too! Thanks lovely!
 

#12
Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.
God I needed to hear this! THANK YOU! x
 

#13
This sounds like a difficult client so I wouldn't take it to heart. She probably does it to everyone and probably to her hairdresser too!
I have several clients with teeny tiny or naff little toe nails. All my clients are much more 'normal' than your lady and will usually say something like "just do what you can with the little toe!" - so all good humoured and know the situation.

However, here are some tips you might be able to use for future tricky toes:
  • Make sure you get the cuticle well back to expose as much nail as possible
  • Remove ridges with buffers to get the nail really smooth (polish will look better if on a smooth nail)
  • If using normal polish, apply so that you get colour on every bit of the nail allowing it to go into the cuticle area, cap the nail and onto the free edge skin - then wipe away (with acetone on a cotton bud) the unwanted polish on the skin.
  • If you are doing gel polish then I can recommend using Lecente Smooth It (after base coat and before colour). This really helps to build a more sturdy nail which will not bend and loose the polish.
Hope this might help!
Thanks so much! All fab advice and taken on board!
 

#14
Hi!

I hope you don’t mind me jumping on this thread...but it’s kind of a similar topic...

What’s your tips for doing a pedicure for nails which are curled under? I’m still practising at the moment so luckily it was my friends but her toes are really tricky with a lot of excess cuticles on her pinky’s, all toenails are curled underneath making it quite hard to cut/file and also one of her nails comes to a raised peak in the middle, making it really hard to do anything with! Also generally I’ve found gel removal a lot harder on toes than fingers, is there a nac to it that I’m missing?
 

RosieR

Well-Known Member
#15
Hi!

I hope you don’t mind me jumping on this thread...but it’s kind of a similar topic...

What’s your tips for doing a pedicure for nails which are curled under? I’m still practising at the moment so luckily it was my friends but her toes are really tricky with a lot of excess cuticles on her pinky’s, all toenails are curled underneath making it quite hard to cut/file and also one of her nails comes to a raised peak in the middle, making it really hard to do anything with! Also generally I’ve found gel removal a lot harder on toes than fingers, is there a nac to it that I’m missing?

Are you asking about "hammer toes" when you say they are curled under?
If yes, it really comes down to the thickness of the nail that is making it hard to cut and file. Hold your clippers at a 45 degree angle instead of parallel with the edge of the nail and finish off with a filing. I have many older clients with the condition and that's what I do.
The peak in the middle would be filed down by a podiatrist, but if your client wants polish or gel on I would not do any filing. I prefer a slightly raised middle to a thinned out nail plate. The gel would slide down on either side so you would have to be quick an do a flash cure on that toe to prevent slide if you know what I mean.
My solution for gel removal on toes is that I am using cuccio peel it underneath the colour coat. I really do a thorough prep of the cuticle area, good push back and trim of the spare dead cuticle. Then I do it again , just in case i have missed a bit. Removal is a dream in big chunks of gel....no damage. So quick for me.
If you take care in your work I am sure that you can turn the ugliest of toes into something pretty. Do your best.
 

#16
Are you asking about "hammer toes" when you say they are curled under?
If yes, it really comes down to the thickness of the nail that is making it hard to cut and file. Hold your clippers at a 45 degree angle instead of parallel with the edge of the nail and finish off with a filing. I have many older clients with the condition and that's what I do.
The peak in the middle would be filed down by a podiatrist, but if your client wants polish or gel on I would not do any filing. I prefer a slightly raised middle to a thinned out nail plate. The gel would slide down on either side so you would have to be quick an do a flash cure on that toe to prevent slide if you know what I mean.
My solution for gel removal on toes is that I am using cuccio peel it underneath the colour coat. I really do a thorough prep of the cuticle area, good push back and trim of the spare dead cuticle. Then I do it again , just in case i have missed a bit. Removal is a dream in big chunks of gel....no damage. So quick for me.
If you take care in your work I am sure that you can turn the ugliest of toes into something pretty. Do your best.
Thank you for your advice. It’s really helpful!!

Does anyone else have any tips for removing gel from toes??
 

Beautiful-you

Well-Known Member
#17
Thank you for your advice. It’s really helpful!!

Does anyone else have any tips for removing gel from toes??
I have 2 methods!

1. File off topcoat, apply acetone soaked cotton wool pad and toe clips (from EBay) to each toe as I go along (so do one toe at a time). By the time the 10th toe is wrapped (I start with the big toe and end with the little toe on each foot), I check the 1st toe and it's usually ready to come off. If it doesn't all come off I add more acetone to the cotton wool pad and put the clip back on. I just work through each toe in order.

2. File off top coat of toes in one foot, apply acetone to a long chunk of cotton wool (cotton wool pleat, not pads), apply it over all 5 toes, wrap the end of the foot in tinfoil and place that foot on either a heated bootie (covered) or a warm heatpad. Then start in the other foot. I check the first foot after about 8 mins, being careful not to let the acetone dry on the other toes.

*. I used to put each foot inside a heated bootie but the acetone must have leaked out as the insides of one bootie stuck together!!
 

CFBS

Well-Known Member
#18
I use the Pro tips pedicure clips over acetone soaked nail wipes.
With this brand you have to apply from little toe to big toe. If you don't you'll find you can't get the clip on the little toe (clips are a bit wide) when you get to the end - embarrassing lol!

Leave on for 10 mins, get coffee, discuss colours, then start removing clips from little toe to big toe one at a time. Rewrap any stubborn bits.
 

#19
I have 2 methods!

1. File off topcoat, apply acetone soaked cotton wool pad and toe clips (from EBay) to each toe as I go along (so do one toe at a time). By the time the 10th toe is wrapped (I start with the big toe and end with the little toe on each foot), I check the 1st toe and it's usually ready to come off. If it doesn't all come off I add more acetone to the cotton wool pad and put the clip back on. I just work through each toe in order.

2. File off top coat of toes in one foot, apply acetone to a long chunk of cotton wool (cotton wool pleat, not pads), apply it over all 5 toes, wrap the end of the foot in tinfoil and place that foot on either a heated bootie (covered) or a warm heatpad. Then start in the other foot. I check the first foot after about 8 mins, being careful not to let the acetone dry on the other toes.

*. I used to put each foot inside a heated bootie but the acetone must have leaked out as the insides of one bootie stuck together!!
Thank you so much and also to CFBS for your advice. I’m currently using the same method as I use for hands which is file down top coat, soak cotton pad in acetone, lay pad over the nail and then wrap in foil. It’s an okay method for hands but found the toes have been a lot harder to remove. I’m mobile so I think the toe clips sound like a more practical option. Does it matter whether I use cotton pad, wool or lint free wipe? I’ll have a look into pro tips!
 

Beautiful-you

Well-Known Member
#20
Thank you so much and also to CFBS for your advice. I’m currently using the same method as I use for hands which is file down top coat, soak cotton pad in acetone, lay pad over the nail and then wrap in foil. It’s an okay method for hands but found the toes have been a lot harder to remove. I’m mobile so I think the toe clips sound like a more practical option. Does it matter whether I use cotton pad, wool or lint free wipe? I’ll have a look into pro tips!
I just use cheap cotton wool round pads, cut into quarters (or halves for big toes).

That's interesting that you find toes harder to remove, I find it the other way around usually!
 
Top