Many women tend to soak their nails in a bowl of soapy water to give them a quick clean and also soften the cuticles. However, this seemingly harmless process is one of the major causes of brittle nails and chipped nail paint.
Nails are extremely porous by nature and when you soak them in water, they end up absorbing a lot of water. Your nail plate expands and takes up to 24 hours to go back to normal. Hence your manicure looks great for that much time, but once your nails go back to its normal size, the nail paint begins to chip and peel.
Instead always do dry manicures. Lightly push back your cuticles (professionals can use e-file cuticle bits) trim the dead skin (white, flaky debris) and then gently buff the shine off the nail plate. Wipe off your nails with 99% alcohol to get rid of any oils and debris, and you know have a fresh canvas to work on!