We’re not sure why manicures ended up being a thing for the ladies. Akin to brunching or glamping, for some reason, many people associate caring for your nails with something mostly only women do. But manicures really are an essential part of personal hygiene – and personal hygiene doesn’t discriminate when it comes to sex.
To be sure, manicures are actually becoming quite popular among men. Men who take care of themselves are more the norm than not these days and regularly manicuring is a good sign that you take care of yourself.
And for the men who aren’t yet comfortable hanging out with the girls at a mani-pedi joint to take care of their nails, there’s no need to take a Saturday afternoon at the spa to stay well-manicured. Read on to find out how you can relax with an at-home men’s manicure routine.
WHY MEN SHOULD CONSIDER MANICURES?
Men might be less interested in the fact that manicures help keep their nails beautiful and more interested in the fact that manicures have actual health benefits. Removing built-up dead skin cells through exfoliation and moisturizing with rich creams not only keeps your skin healthy and strong but also reduces your risk of developing fungus or infection. The massage you receive while having a manicure also improves blood circulation and enhances joint mobility.
There are also mind-body benefits to a manicure. Receiving a treatment like manicures, pedicures, facials, and massages is a chance to relax and de-stress. If you lead a particularly hectic life, this hour treatment every few weeks could be among your few opportunities to engage in some form of self-care, which is essential to your emotional and mental health.
Another interesting benefit of manicures is that they can give you insight into other aspects of your health. How do they do that? Well, your nails actually say a lot about your overall health. Indeed, changes in your nails can be a symptom of some health issues and a manicure can help you notice those changes well before an issue becomes more serious.
For example, pale nails could signify anemia or even heart trouble. Very white nails could be an indication of liver trouble or even hepatitis. Yellow nails are a sign of fungus in the nail bed. Dry, brittle, and cracked nails could mean you’ve got a thyroid condition.
Pay attention to what your nails are telling you! If you notice a sudden change in the hue of your nails, or even a gradual change over time, chat with your doctor to rule out any possible health problems.
By and large, though, manicures for men just look and feel good. You’ll improve your circulation, prevent fungus and other yucky stuff from forming on your hands, and, of course, you’ll show the world you take care of yourself.
WHY AN AT-HOME MANICURE? DO YOU EVEN NEED A MEN”S MANICURE KIT?
Even if you’d rather have your nails professionally pampered, there’s plenty of reason to own a quality nail care kit. First of all, not all nail salons follow sanitation standards to the letter. Even when they do, these salons can carry a heightened risk of infection.
They’re full of nail clipping and cuticle cutting which means there’s the potential for skin lesions and blood. There’s also a lot of dead skin and nail filing, which has nowhere to go but into the air (gross). Bacteria, fungus, and warts that are transferred and contacted through the skin thrive here.
But there are some things you can do to make your visit safer – the most important of which is bringing your own men’s manicure kit. Bringing your own kit to the salon can ensure that you’re less likely to contract any kind of fungus or infection. You can get every manicure knowing that those tools have been used on your hands and yours alone.
Alternatively, having your own manicure kit allows you to perform your own manicure at home. If you’re not one to visit a salon, if you can’t find the time to make an appointment, or you just prefer to create your own relaxing vibe at home when it comes to self-care and personal hygiene, a personal manicure kit comes in handy.
WHAT ARE THE ESSENTIAL PARTS OF A MEN’S MANICURE KIT?
Has the mention of fungus got you ready to race to the drug store? Not so fast! Let’s look at what you should look for in a quality men’s nail care kit.
There are a few components of a proper, quality nail kit. We’ll give specific examples later, but here are the basics.
NAIL FILE OR EMERY BOARD
This is like gentle sandpaper for your nails. A nail file or emery board will smooth out the rough edges of your nails and allow you to safely shape them.
There are oodles of nail clippers on the market. Opt for something sharp, as dull clippers can actually damage your nails.
Whatever you do, don’t cut your cuticles! Cuticles are there for a reason – to protect you from bacteria and other gross stuff. Instead of cutting them, use a cuticle stick to gently push back the cuticle.
Just don’t use them on your cuticles (we can’t stress this enough). Manicure scissors can help you trim your nails, and can also clip any little hangnails you might come across.
This one’s not mandatory, but nail buffers are actually good for you. Using a nail buffer will “polish” your nails, and help to improve your circulation.
HOW TO PICK YOUR MEN’S MANICURE SET
Choosing your manicure set is all about the materials. The best metal is carbon steel because the edges of it keep sharp for a long time. With that said, carbon steel has a tendency to rust. And, as your men’s manicure set is sitting in your bathroom, it’s a sure bet that your nail clippers will go rusty in a relatively short period of time. If you opt for this option, be sure to place your kit in a dry place.
Or, to avoid rusting altogether, choose a stainless steel product. It’s an affordable, commonly used metal in quality men’s nail sets, and will stay sharp anywhere from one year to ten.
For best results, find a high-carbon stainless steel set. They’re durable, rust-resistant and they stay sharp for a long time. High carbon steel is more expensive, but if you only have to buy the one set for the next 25 years, it’s well worth it.
BEST MEN’S MANICURE SET
Ready to get started? Here are the five best men’s manicure kit options for you.
Takumi No Waza G-3103 Luxury Grooming Kit $89.95
This high-quality men’s manicure set is the ultimate in luxury. There are six pieces in the set, including:
- Toenail clipper
- Fingernail clipper
- Nostril scissors
- Nail Nippers
- Nail file
- Slant tweezers
The men’s manicure set is made from high-quality stainless steel and comes in a classy leather carrying case. Just zip it up and you’re ready to touch up your nails on the go.
Obviously, there are a few extras in your Takumi No Waza kit. You can trim your nose hairs on the go, too, as well as pluck that stray eyebrow hair. What more could a man want?
JINLI Nail Care Personal Manicure & Pedicure Set $7.99
The JINLU Nail Care Personal Kit has everything you need to create your perfect manicured look. It’s a 12 piece kit, including everything you need to care for your nails and yourself on the go. In your kit, you’ll find:
- Nail clippers
- Cuticle cutter (ahem – hangnail trimmer)
- Moustache clipper
- Toenail clippers
- Nail file
- Two cuticle pushers
- Cuticle trimmer
- Blackhead Remover
- Ear wax pick
- Oblique nail trimmer
This high-quality men’s manicure set comes at an awesome price point, and it contains everything you need for personal grooming on the move.
Royce Leather Aristo Mini Manicure Set $36
This one’s great for travel, too. The Royce Leather Aristo set is enclosed in a case made from recycled cowhide fibers. And the binding? Renewable, sustainably sourced latex. Awesome, right?
So what’s inside? You’ll find hot-forged scissors, toenail clippers, fingernail clippers, a knife and a covered nail file in your kit. Men who have used this kit say the leather case is an elegant touch, and that the tools themselves last for years.
GERmanicure 5 Piece Set $105
The manicure tools in this set are handmade in Germany from high carbon stainless steel, which means it has a slightly higher cost than some of the others. But the items in this men’s manicure set will last for years and years, so the price is well worth it.
In this set are nippers, scissors and everything else you’ll need for your at-home manicure. But what you won’t find are nail clippers! Instead, rely on the scissors to precision-trim your nails.
Men who have used this kit say the red leather case is “soft as butter” and smells great. The tools last for ages, and are made in Germany by adult artisans. Bring this kit to the nail salon easily, as it’s only just a little over 6 inches wide.
Anself 10-in-1 Stainless Steel Manicure $7.99
Portable and affordable, this kit contains everything you’ll need to have your nails in ship shape. Inside the rugged leather case, you’ll find:
- Two nail clippers in two sizes
- One toenail clipper
- A cuticle (hangnail!) trimmer
- Eyebrow scissors
- Nail file
- Two push sticks in different shapes
- Ear wax pick
Reviews of the Anself 10-in-1 are excellent! Men love the stainless steel tools, and say the leather case is hugely convenient. One man described it as a “non-entity” in his briefcase. All reviews cited the sharpness of the tools, and men loved the price of this kit in particular!
MEN’S MANICURE TIPS
Ready to start your manicure, but not sure how to do it? Here are a few tips to get you on your way to healthy, well-groomed nails.
FIRST, EAT RIGHT
Diet plays a huge role in nail health. Eat plenty of protein, lean meats, and protein-containing veggies if you’re a vegetarian.
THEN, TRIM YOUR NAILS
There are tons of fancy nail clippers in the stores. You don’t need extravagance. Just settle for a sharp clipper and cut your nail in whatever shape you like. Most men like to cut their nails straight across, but you may choose to cut your nails into a rounded shape. The choice is yours, friend!
NOW, SHAPE THEM
Using your emery board, shape your nails and smooth the edges. Start in the corner of your nail and work your way to the center, so you won’t split your fingernails.
NEXT, PUSH BACK YOUR CUTICLES
Using your cuticle stick, gently push back your cuticles away from your fingernail. Once again, don’t cut your cuticles. Doing so can cause infection.
BUFF TO A SHINE, IF YOU LIKE
There are all sorts of nail buffers out there. You’ll find single buffers and four-step buffers. Use what you like, and buff your nails to a healthy shine. You’ll love it – it’s like a little finger massage.
FINALLY, JUST ADD MOISTURE
All that’s left is the moisture! Use a men’s moisturizing product to prevent dry brittle nails and to keep your cuticles soft and pliable.
Men, manicures aren’t just for women! A high-quality men’s manicure set can go a long way in making you look and feel great! Whether you take your manicure kit to the salon or DIY at home, a manicure kit is essential for every well-groomed man.