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You want your nail polish to be just like your skin — even and smooth. So when you paint on a coat of polish, and it looks thick and chunky, your manicure is going to appear less-than-stellar. You don’t have to give up on your finish entirely, but you can improve your manicure techniques and how you store your polish. With a few adjustments, your manicure will look more professional and less like a third-grader painted on the polish.

Mix Up Your Polishes

Just like baking your favorite cake, you can mix up your nail polish to reduce the chunks and thickness. Head to your favorite cosmetics aisle to buy an empty nail polish bottle or add in a small amount of clear nail polish into your existing nail polish bottle. Roll the bottle between your hands to mix well. Resist the urge to shake the bottle — shaking creates excess air bubbles that make your nail polish chunky.

Dress It Up

When you want to draw attention away from big hips, you wear a thick necklace to draw attention to your face. You can accessorize your nails, too. To accomplish this, put a few sequins or glitter on top of your chunky nail polish. This can take away from the chunks and draw attention instead to your fancy, banging nails.

Even Out

Is that Picasso — or just you when you use your best painting skills to even out chunky nail polish? If your nail polish has become chunky in one part, take your polish and apply it only to the side that is not chunky in an attempt to make the two polish areas equal and even. This can reduce the appearance of chunkiness without having to completely take off the polish you’ve already applied.

Remove It

Sometimes you can’t help but bring out the nail polish remover. When all else fails, using a small amount of remover can correct a small area of buildup. Wrap an orange stick with a thin layer of cotton and dip the orange stick in nail polish remover. Gently rub this over the area of dried nail polish that appears chunky until the nail polish is more even with its surrounding finish. This might require you to apply an additional top coat or nail polish layer, but at least you didn’t have to start over.

For the Future

Before your next manicure, switch your storage option of choice to your refrigerator. Storing your nail polish in your refrigerator helps to extend your polish’s shelf life, keeping it from getting chunky the next time you use it. Consider freezer storage like putting your nail polish on a diet — it keeps it from getting chunky.

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