Party-perfect nails

Beautiful French manicure

Whether you're dressing up in your black-tie gala best or country club casual coolest, you want your entire look to be polished.

Here are a few simple style tricks to make sure your fingers and toes are at their party best:

Have a manicure or polish your own nails no more than two or three days before your special occasion. While pedicures can last several weeks or even more, manicures may only look top-notch for 3 or 4 days.

To preserve your freshly painted look, choose the ever-popular French manicure (and carry a white polish pen, just in case). Or select a light pearly pink or beige, which won't show chips as much as will flashy vixen reds, deep pinks, or other hot colors.

Another nail tip: Put on a fresh top coat every day to extend the life of your manicure.

Must fingers and toes match? Absolutely not, say fashion experts. While light colors look great on summer's loveliest hands, wild colors on toes will draw attention to your sexy, strappy sandals.

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