Gel nails for the lazy girl
It may have come to your attention, but when it comes to beauty if there is a short cut, I’ll use it. It’s not that I don’t want to look nice or feel feminine but I am intrinsically lazy. That, and there are just too many hilarious tumblr blogs to read to spend time on my beauty routine.
I mentioned in my press on nails review that despite having the largest nail polish collection known to man (which keeps on growing) I am absolutely crap at painting my nails. I hate to have bare nails, and ever since purchasing that crazy pale green Stargazer polish aged 12 I’ve been hooked. Even though I have a love hate relationship with nail polish, the colours, the sparkle, the gloss and the overall look is something that I can’t get enough of. I love having awesome nails.
But the chipping, peeling, smudging, removal and then painting all over again is tiresome. And upsetting. And way too time consuming. Which is why I’ve been finding my own cheats way to perfectly manicured hands.
Gel nails are not a new thing by any means, and I’ve been having them done fairly regularly for the past two years. But they seem to be having something of a rennaissance of late, with every polish company under the sun jumping on that bandwaon and getting involved. This is no bad thing. I’m a huge advocate of the gel (telling everyone and their dog to get it done, with splendid results) so the greater the choice, the better.
Essentially gel nails are almost like a cross between acrylics and a normal polish job. The specially formulated gel polish is applied to your natural nail (usually after a manicure) and “cured” under a UV light after each coat, to set it and make it last. Gels usually last around 3 weeks, after which your natural nail starts to grow out and there is a gap between the gel and your natural nail. You then get it removed professionally by a salon.
Although I’ve tried a few, my favourote is Bio Sculpture. I find they have the largest colour range and are the most popular in salons so are easy to find and slightly cheaper than most. Even Nails Inc use this brand for their 3 week manicure. I have also used Jessica GELeration (sadly mine started to peel off) and Shellac (only really lasts two weeks), but am yet to try OPI Axxium or Gelish which are also on the market.
There are some pros and cons to getting gel nails though, and they certainly aren’t for everyone.
- You have the same polish on for the time the gels last – this doesn’t bother me too much, as I try and pick something jazzy each time, but if you like to change polish daily, this isn’t for you
- It isn’t cheap – the cheapest I have found is around £35, and I make my gels last as long as possible
- The regrowth of your natural nail can be a bit annoying. My nails grow quickly so after three weeks it can be really noticeable.
- You need to go and get them soaked off professionally
- They really do last three weeks, sometimes four which is excellent value for money and saves you time
- They come in a really amazing array of colours – and some salons carry different shades so you can switch up where you go for variety
- It really helps build strong, long nails – these are excellent for nail biters or those with peeling nails
- They give the most glossy, professional finish – something you’d struggle to get from a normal manicure
If you decide to go for it – beware! Having gorgeous nails that don’t budge can become seriously addictive. If you look after your nails with gels on (use a nail oil or cuticle gel), trim your cuticles and slather on the hand lotion these will really last. I don’t see me going back to a normal paint job any time soon, and for me the money is worth the investment. At least I can look a bit polished on a day to day basis.
Have you ever tried gel nails? What were your thoughts?