Shellac – the nails, not the band.
Another guest review from Vanessa, yay!
In this post, we go from the wildness of Katy Perry to a more grown-up kind of manicure – Shellac. I’ve been hearing buzz about this for some time, but being on the economical kind of nail enthusiast (read: cheap), I only gave it a go when an opportunity showed up on Grab One for $25.
Shellac is a unique treatment in that it is a polish, applied on top of your natural nails, which is cured with UV light to make it dry super-fast and super-strong. The company which produces it (CND) claims a 14 day life with no chips or cracks.
Thus, on an overcast Wednesday afternoon I arrived at The Nail Studio in Newmarket, Auckland. I was promptly received and shown through to the treatment room, where, with some embarrassment, I explained to the technician that yes, this is only my second manicure, yes, I cut my cuticles off with a pocket knife, and no, that odd yellowing is due to a nail strengthener, not cigarettes. (Anyone else have this problem?)
We began with some filing, the nasty yellow staining being buffed off, and my cuticles being pushed back (all fairly standard, I understand, but rather new to me). From there, a base coat was applied (followed by ten seconds under UV light), two coats of the colour (followed by two minutes each under UV light), and a top coat (more UV light). I went with a pale pink colour, as I had a job interview later that day. Following this, isopropyl alcohol was applied to remove any stickiness from the nail, and some oil to moisturise the nail bed. And a mere half hour later, we were done!
I’ve been pretty impressed with the finish so far. I found myself wincing slightly as I delved into my handbag for my keys, but, reassured by the vigorous way the technician had buffed my nails afterwards, I went for it, and all was well. The lack of drying time once you leave the salon is a huge advantage, and if the finish lasts for the 14 days promised, well, in the immortal words of Arnie, “I’ll be back”. It’s been almost a week so far, and I only have one minuscule chip incurred – very impressive. The shine has lasted well, too – the polish still looks like it has just been applied.
With regards to the removal of the polish: the nail technician said that, while it is recommended to get it professionally taken off, the Shellac can be removed at home by soaking your nails in pure acetone for five minutes.
Shellac is available at a number of salons, and typically costs $50-$65 a treatment.