I love gel manicures oh so, so, so much but I have to admit that they are not the best thing for my nails. I love the coat of armor they give my nails, and of course the zero-dry time. Being an impatient gal, not having to sit around and wait for my nails to try is a huge plus. Not to mention the 2-weeks and then some wear time. It is a bit of a vicious cycle because I remove my mani, my nails are left a little thin and weak but then I want to run out and get another gel mani just to make up for it. Am I alone here?
When I first started reading about the new CND Vinylux line, I was instantly on board. It is their new line of longer wearing nail color that gives you a week of wear and durability without UV/LED lamps. CND actually says the top coat actually toughens over time with increased exposure to light. Added bonus? Practically all your favorite Shellac shades are now available in this formula. There is really nothing to like here, right?
This week’s Mani Monday is actually from last week’s trip to Cosmoprof in Las Vegas. While I was there, I had a chance to see the new CND Shellac shades coming out and experience the new Orly Gel FX manicure for myself. I wanted the best of both worlds so I decide to keep my Shellac mani on one hand and try the new Orly Gel FX on the other so I could compare the two at the same time. It may look a little odd in person but I don’t care, I’m loving these two shades.
One of my beauty “projects” is improving the condition of my cuticles. All the paper I deal with day in and day out really gives them a beating but I’m trying to give them some attention each day and so far it’s working super well. I picked up a few bottles of CND’s Solar Oil and I keep them at my desks at work and at home.
All it takes is a minute to apply, I apply it to my cuticles and underneath my nails. I let it soak in (while I’m typing or whatever I’m doing that remove the oil or get it on fabric) and that’s it. Together with CND’s Cuticle Eraser, my nails are looking better than ever. There’s really nothing to these products, you apply daily, rub them and let the products soak in and that’s that. I have to blame Erika at Makeup Bag for this obsession, she really has the most enviable nails ever.
When I took of my polish from last week, my nails still looked glossy and shiny thanks to Revlon’s Crazy Shine I left them bare. The other day I got a nice compliment while I was getting a pedicure and declined a manicure… “they looks so pink and healthy!” Yep, because I’m putting in the time.
What’s your beauty VIP of the week? What product has saved your life lately?
A good base coat really is the key to extending the life of your manicure. CND’s Stickey Base Coat is one of my favorites — both on price and quality. On the weeks I forget to use this, I can tell the difference because I’ll generally get a chip by day three. I am incredibly hard on my nails and constantly wash my hands. Nail polish doesn’t stand a chance without appropriate armor!
Also, a base coat is the first line of defense for nail staining. As a frequent DIY-manicurist at home, I find that a base coat is an easy step that pays dividends throughout the week. Case in point: my Essie Silken Cord mani is still looking sharp for my holiday party tonight!
If you love Shellac (like me!) but wish there was more shades to chose from, this news just came in… CND will unveil 12 new Shellac shades in March 2011, with colors ranging from beige to black. While some of us have already been layering shades to create new unique looks, CND is adding 12 more shades to give you more options and variety.
I’m loving the color on the nail on the image above. Have you tried Shellac yet? Manicure prices generally range from $25-45 and pedicures from $40-60 depending on location. For local salons around the world offering Shellac, visit the Shellac Salon Locator at cnd.com.
Remember when I told you I tried CND’s Shellac nail color? I’ve been Shellac-free for quite awhile now but wanted to follow up on my original post with a little more information and some tips for removing Shellac as well.
I took this picture 3 weeks after Shellac was applied. As you can see in the picture above, 3 weeks later and my color was not chipped at all. I’m sure I could go a few more weeks and still not have a single chip on my nail but honestly, at the end of three weeks I was just dying to wear a different shade on my nails and of course the re-growth was a little bit of a problem. Otherwise, doesn’t it look great?
As I mentioned, last week I had the pleasure of receiving the new CND Shellac Nail treatment at the Clarisonic Sonic Chatter blog launch party. A little over a week later, Tutti Frutti (the color you see below) and I are still going strong.
I have to say, I have really put this manicure through the ringer. With all the packing, moving and cleaning I have done lately after moving, I expected at least some wear (and maybe a chip or two) on my nails but Shellac is holding up its end of the bargain beautifully.
At first glance, Shellac looks like any other nail polish but the key to this product is the UV light that the polish cures under in between each coat of the base, color and top coat. Once the timer has gone off for the UV light after your top coat has been applied, you no longer have to careful with your nails. You can dig through your pockets or even a bag full of nails! Ok, maybe not literally a bag of nails but you get the idea, right? I was completely in awe that I just had my nails done and could search for my car keys in my bag without a single smudge or nic on my nail color. That alone made me want to kneel and praise at the altar of CND.
Over a week later and the color on my tips is looking just as good and glossy as the day it was applied, this photo here was taken yesterday. Don’t they look good? You know how sometimes you can almost “color” with your nails? I do this a lot because the day job consists of handling lots and lots of paper, so inevitably the tips of my nails tend to do a little coloring. With Shellac, this accidental coloring is a thing of the past, the color is not affected at all. This stuff seems almost indestructible!
The only thing that would keep me away from Shellac is its price. It is definitely the kind of treatment I would splurge on just for fun or before a vacation to ensure flawless nails but my wallet could not handle it every 2 weeks. That’s just me though… My aunt on the other hand, loves the idea of nail polish that lasts so much that she’s on the brink of booking herself an appointment. For her, nail polish does not last more than a day on her nails so she doesn’t mind the price. If that’s the boat you’re in or price simply isn’t an issue, Shellac is definitely the way to go.
With said, I’m already planning a return trip to Spa Scotta to get CND Shellac in Wildfire on my nails once they are a little longer. For now I’m wondering just how long I can stretch out this manicure, I’ll be sure to let you all know on Twitter just how long that is.