#1
Long story short, I play both bass and guitar, both fingerstyle, and I haven't really found a good fingernail length for both. I hate it when my fingernail hits the string on the bass guitar, but it's more comfortable to play the acoustic and electric guitars with slightly longer fingernails.

I thought that the solution is simple: keep the nails short and get fingerpicks. Here's the problem: I'm pretty sure either the fingerpicks suck, or I suck. They're cheap Pickboy fingerpicks (1e a piece) and they're so tight that they literally cut the blood flow to my fingertips. I have fat fingers, granted, but it's not like my hands are abnormally large. The moment I put them on, my hand starts feeling weird, and my fingers lose a lot of precision and mobility. I've heard that it's a matter of practice, keep the fingerpicks on for long enough and you'll get use to them. But 20 seconds after I put them on my fingertips turn blue, and my hand feels awkward for a good minute after I take them off. That can't be healthy, can it?

So, the possible answers:

1. the picks are cheap and they suck and I should get new ones

2. I have severely misunderstood how to use fingerpicks

3. I should quit being so lame and just keep the picks on and get used to them

I'd like to believe it's the first one. I doubt that it's the third one, because believe me the picks feel so bad I can't stand keeping them on for longer than a minute. They're currently stretching around a thin book I have, I'll see if they become a bit more loose.

I'd also appreciate some tips on using fingerpicks. How should I change up my posture and practice routines with fingerpicks? Should I expect them to work just like my fingernails? Is it really necessary to have them, or should I stick to practicing without picks, with short fingernails? I can play guitar without nails, it just feels a bit... stickier? Don't know how to explain it. And honestly, I'm not even 100% sure how to put them on properly like how much of the pick should be sticking out past my finger etc. Maybe I need a good educational video or something.

Thanks.
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#2
I don't think that price as anything to do with it, but you have to find ones that suit you. For example, metal ones can be bent to fit. However, I've tried all kinds a number of times and never been able to get used to them. I think like a lot of things, it is just persistence.
#3
You have to bend the picks so they fit as close to comfortably as possible. You also want to bend the tips to follow the curves of your fingers. You also need to angle the picks so they fit the strings flat as opposed to being straight on your fingers and having them strike the strings at an angle.



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#4
Thank you for the reference pics Kristen! The problem seems to be that the tip of these fingerpicks is hard plastic and really hard to bend. At it's default position, there's a noticeable gap between my finger and the pick. I'll keep experimenting, but I'll probably get metal picks like that when I get some spare change. And I'm getting used to playing without nails anyway, let's see if it's necessary.
Quote by Jet Penguin
Theory: Not rules, just tools.

Quote by Hail
*note that by fan i mean that guy who wants his friends to know he knows this totally obscure hip band that only he knows about with 236 views on youtube. lookin' at Kev here
#5
With plastic picks, you have to heat them up in hot water. You can go online and find info on fitting mouth guards and it's the same idea.
There's no such thing; there never was. Where I am going you cannot follow me now.