Have you tried the busy woman’s manicure?
For the past 15 months I’ve had beautiful nails. Not beautiful in the sense that someone’s going to snap me up as a hand model. No, beautiful in the sense that they looked cared for.
Which is a major improvement on the 15
months years prior to that.
See, while I love the look of manicured nails adorned with nail colour, I’m not prepared to make the time to get them into that condition. Actually, scrap that. That’s not entirely true. It would make it a lovely Sunday-night in-front-of-the-telly activity but you know what the frustrating thing would be?
The colour chipping off the very next day.
I use my nails … well, they’re attached to my fingers which, in turn, see a whole lot of keyboard action. Every day.
Now, when I look down at my keyboard I don’t see any chips. I just see beautiful nails. I’ll admire what colour I’ve got on this fortnight and congratulate myself for looking very polished. You know, like a proper beauty writer an all.
Well, it’s not so secret now but back when I wrote this post in August last year, not many people had cottoned on to the two-week manicure from CND Shellac. In a nutshell, it’s applied like a regular polish – two colour coats plus a base and undercoat – but it’s sealed under UV light. It won’t feel thick like acrylics on your nails and, unlike acrylics, I can report that your nails will actually strengthen from having this on regularly. To remove the colour, you soak it off with acetone, which I’ll mostly do at home to save a few dollars at the salon.
When I first started out, I was all boringly beige. Sticking with neutral colours as I was not accustomed to my nails actually being a feature. Now, I’ll happily wrap them around a champagne glass and show off my latest colour at any given opportunity.
I haven’t stuck to just single colours either. CND Shellac actually promote and encourage salons to layer colours to create a different colour. One of my faves has been a soft sheer neutral (Negligee) over black (Blackpool) which created a gorgeous midnight blue. And recently I was trying to get close to the new Chanel pearlised white. I didn’t quite make it with the layering of two neutrals – Negligee over Romantique – but it was close.
Here are some of the colours that have graced my tallons over the past few months. Let me know if you want more information on the colours featured.
Expect to pay between $30-45 for an application and extra to have your previous colour soaked off. Shop and ask around for recommendations. It actually takes a special skill (and someone who’s done the training) to apply this nail product successfully. And if you’re not happy with the result, ie it chips or lifts in two days, go back and ask for it to be re-done. If applied correctly, this shouldn’t happen. In my experience, some colours are more chip-resistant than others. The more opaque colours have often lifted earlier than that the translucent ones for me.
Oh, and other nail companies – OPI and Orly – have recently brought out similar nail colour systems. I’m yet to try and compare these but if you have, please let me know how it went. I’m super curious.
Do you get regular manicures or do them yourself? Are you a CND Shellac convert like me? What’s your favourite colour?
Nikki Parkinson is a fashion and beauty blogger at award-winning Styling You. When she’s not writing, hanging out on Twitter or Facebook, she’s helping women spend their money on clothes that make them feel fabulous.