Polishing With Opposite Hand

I get asked all the time how the heck I polish with my opposite hand. And my answer is always, “Practise, practise practise!” Unless you’re ambidextrous, which would really come in handy right about now. Repetition makes something feel like second nature, but of course this takes time and patience (a lot of it).

I’ve had some horrendous polish jobs using my opposite hand, but every attempt is a lesson learned. Here are some tips to help you feel (a little more) comfortable when it comes to painting with your non-dominant hand.

Paint With Your Opposite Hand First

Start with your opposite hand when your patience is high. This way you can focus on taking your time and not rush through it. The reality is, using your non-dominate hand might take you twice as long compared to using your dominate, and that is ooooookay. Get motivated in knowing you’re getting the hard stuff out of the way first. The rest will be a breeze!

If you have no patience to begin with, well then you’re SOL (shit outta luck).

Hand Positioning

Play around with different positions to assist your painting. You might feel comfortable with your hand on a sturdy flat surface as you hover over to polish. Maybe you prefer to have your nails facing you, in a closed palm position (see video). This brings them a little closer to your face without crouching over to polish. Or maybe you like to sit with your knees up and place your hand flat on your knee.

Whatever feels best for you, do that.

Apply Thin Coats

Thin coats are key when it comes to curing (light cured polish) or drying (regular polish). When polishing with your opposite hand, it might be harder to control the amount of polish being applied to the nail. Start with very minimal product on the brush and keep the coats thin.

Even if you think your first coat is too sheer, it’s better to have that than polish running into the cuticle and side walls. It makes for one big mess to clean up afterwards. You might actually be surprised at how much coverage you’ll get after you do a second (thin) coat.

Always remember: Three thin coats is better than two thick ones. Especially for light cured polish. Click here for more info why.

This is not a race. Slow down, focus, and paint the shit out of that hand! So what if you’ve watched 3 episodes of *insert popular show here*. If you start to think of painting nails as a therapeutic hobby, this process might actually relax you instead of frustrate you. And the result is a beautiful set of polished nails that you did.

Practise and patience.

Color shown in video: “You Don’t Know Jacques” OPI Gel Color Polish