Manicure and Pedicure – Best of 2013

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We’re happy to assist you in any way we can. Having a manicure and pedicure is one of those little treats that I really miss when I’m broke. As soon as I have a little money to spend on myself I head out to have my feet scraped and my cuticles trimmed by a professional. Unlike many of my friends, my own manicures are a joke. I can apply liquid eye liner with a steady hand and paint fashion illustrations, but painting my own nails is nearly impossible.

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She then explained that the gel polish didn’t chip and could last anywhere from two to three weeks. I’m pretty hard on my hands. As a result normal nail polish usually chips in two days. If I really work at it and apply top coat and touch up bad spots I can keep a regular manicure going for about four days, but that’s it.

The colors all have the usual fun OPI names. Yes, IT’S ALMOST PERFECT AFTER A WEEK and it looked great for another two weeks. The problem is when it does start to peel the color won’t come off unless you soak your hands in nail polish remover for at least 15 minutes. I’m don’t like the smell of nail polish remover anyway, and the thought of SOAKING my hands in the stuff really makes me unhappy. Instead, it peeled from the cuticle up. Also, my nails had not torn, broken, peeled or snagged. The polish protected them from all harm.

I’m one of those people who’s nails are always breaking. 8 inch long nails seem almost miraculous. Back I went to the salon to have it removed and reapplied. In the end I think the benefits of having my nails looking great for three weeks outweigh the problem of removing the stuff. Because a gel nail polish is applied differently than regular polish I thought you might want to see the process, so I photographed it. I forgot to get a photo, but after just a couple of minutes the old polish goes white and peels up. Your cuticles are then trimmed and nails filed as usual.

Because my nails have ridges they’re usually sanded down a bit. Next a base coat is applied. Between each layer you stick your hands in these ultraviolet cookers. You wear the mittens to keep the rays off your hands.

This is probably the creepiest aspect of the whole process. The polish has to be carefully mixed because it tends to separate. The polish and top coat is applied as it would be normally. Your hands are massaged afterwards as the polish dries completely in the ray soaking devices.

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Here’s my new manicure, a few days after application. That was last week, and they still look great! I’m not the only one of my friends who’s thoughts have turned to manicures and nail polish recently. What do you think of this? I can’t believe the tips still looked so perfect after 4 weeks of wear. This is definitely something to look into for anyone who doesn’t mind wearing the same color for an extended period.

I have a tendency to change mine more often than that, but this would be perfect for vacations and other times when I needed to be chip-proof! The salon is a treat, so I make time for it once a week or so, but I doubt I’ll ever be able to take care of my own manicures. Sometimes I can throw some polish on my toes, but only if they can dry as I run errands! UV GEL with production, sales and scientific research in China,we specialize in gel polish, base gel, top coat, one step gel, builder gel, color gel, sculpture gel and so on. Its totally addictive and is not dissimular really to having acrylic or fibre glass wraps on yr nails but a simpler more friendly process if your nails are basically strong to start with.

I didn’t know this stuff has been available for 19 years! It’s only been at my salon for about a year. I’d love to hear what you think of it Alexis. I am going to get myself some OPI nail polish, as soon as I set my eyes on it. I do isn’t nail polish friendly.

I’ve been lurking on your blog I just need to leave a few comments! Hey sweets, thanks for the shout! My mani went three solid weeks with no chips, breaks, or flaws. I chose not to continue with gel color only because I don’t like the UV exposure and my wallet didn’t need the expense either. At the end of three weeks, the only evidence that it was an old mani was the growth at the cuticle. Which brings me to this: Your mani should not have peeled at the cuticle.

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But it just coming up, there only, means the manicurist did not remove all residual moisture from cuticle oil or a hand massage before applying the product. Can you recall if they did that? But the new one seems to be sticking better than the first. Thing is the second time I went first thing in the morning and I think the manicurist did a better job then when I went in the afternoon. Normally it doesn’t seem to matter, but small things can mess up something that needs to stick for 3 weeks! I would want to know exactly what kind of rays one is being zapped with and how harmful they are.

Yeah the cookers kinda freak me out too. I’m thinking about my own gloves and just cutting out a spot for the nail. I might have to get it again. I had never heard about gel nail polish! The only down side, as you said, has to be the difficulty to remove it. Loved the Strawberry Margarita nail polish!

I had never heard of the gel polish before my first try with the stuff. The salon said they started offering it last summer, so it’s fairly new. Plus, it will last up to 4 weeks. I’m glad you like gel polish Sister Phyllis. Mine don’t usually last 4 weeks though!

More like two before they start peeling at the cuticle. I am very anxious waiting for people on the street to photograph. Can’t wait to see some more street style Lee! I had short brittle nails until I tried Jamberry nail wraps!

Now my nails are growing and stronger! Thanks so much for the info, Heather! I’ve heard alot about the gels, lots of my friends are raving about them. You know there might be mega-chemicals, but they don’t smell bad at all. I’ve never tried wraps or tips or anything like that because the smell was so nasty I couldn’t believe they weren’t toxic.

I’m not sure about this stuff, but it’s probably no worse than the nail polish we already use. Hhmmm, this makes me want to try this again I’ve only done this once before but wow, 4 weeks? Laces and Brights- Feels Oh- So Right! Thanks for this review Heather, I don’t have a clue on anything nail-related and have seriously misbehaving nails, chipping away constantly.

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My sister has introduced me to a better way of painting my nails and I have noticed a slight improvement but I was wondering what was the deal about the gel manis and your detailed documentation of the process is very useful. I don’t they break and look horrible! Let me know if you try it out. I’m a little creeped by the cooker, but besides that, this looks like a fab idea! If you’re interested PM me and I’ll send you the name of the place so you can try it too if you want! 15 more than the usual mani-pedi. I’ve always wanted to know more about this!

I’m really rough on my nails too and its hard for me to grow them out as a result. I think I’m going to try this! Let me know what you think if you try it! I have no idea why, but your nails after 4 weeks looked REALLY COOL! I felt like a mess with the weirdest chipped nails ever.

How odd that you’re an artist and find it difficult to paint your nails, and I can’t draw a straight line yet manicuring isn’t too hard for me. I haven’t liked them because they just look, well, fake. I’m not sure if I would do this but I am really happy you told us more about it! You do such a nice job on your nails yourself I’m not sure you’d need to do something like this. I can paint my left hand, but my right hand ends up a big, ugly, mess. Plus I have kids at home and there never seems to be enough quiet time to sit and do my nails appropriately, which is why I have them done somewhere else. Having my nails done is a big treat for me!

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I became addicted to gels this year. Went from having manicures that chipped after two days to manicures that last two weeks! Thanks for stopping by, and I’m glad I’m not the only one who’s addicted. I can’t wait to go again.

I think gel nail polish is great! I have friends who get this or Chellac and love it, but I have a problem with keeping polish on my nails for more than a week. I love changing my polish weekly, and that’s the one thing keeping me from trying it! I’m glad you found something that works for you! To tell the truth I get a little bored of seeing the same color on my nails for more than a few days, but I’m starting to get used to it. Thanks for the tip Rad panther.

I love gel polish is the only thing that works for me. In order from them to not peel from the cuticle up is to make sure they don’t apply too close to the cuticle, otherwise it lifts. Mine don’t peel at all and it saves me money and time. This time round the gel polish is sticking quite well. I think it’s been on for over two weeks at this point and they’re still perfect!

The last time I went for a mani the woman next to me was getting gel mani and she raaaaaaved about it! I’m so happy that you went into way more detail than she did. I am kind of a lover of changing up my nails with fun mani’s but this would be great for vacation! Can you get this done on the little piggies? The place I go doesn’t offer the gel for the toes, but a pedicure will easily last me 3 or more weeks. Let me know if you try it!

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I’ve been wanting to try the gel or even shellac nails. I don’t have loads of bills lying around, cause I know I would get hooked! I think I might be hooked! I’ve never had a gel manicure, but now I am intrigued! I love OPI but after doing the gel polish for a few months consecutively,  my nails became quite thin and brittle underneath. It’s great, but I would suggest breaks after every two times or so to prevent damage to your nail. I’ll keep that in mind for the future.

Thanks for sharing this post so much. Ok, I’m actually so glad I just saw this and read your post! Opi invited me to try this when it first launched and I was too chicken because of the removal process and the chemicals. 2 years ago and I haven’t seen her since. It’s actually less stinky, chemical wise, than a regular manicure! I’d love to see what you think. I’m at the point in this manicure when it must come off, and it must come off soon.

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The problem is I’ve been swamped with work. Not that that’s a bad problem to have! I’m happy about it, but the problem with the gel is I can’t get it off myself. The ultraviolet rays will keep me away.

Yeah the ultraviolet rays are a little creepy. I’ve now had the gel polish three times in a row, and each time I’m amazed by the staying power of the product. The next time I’m just getting a regular polish, to give my nails, and my hands, a rest. I recently bought the do it yourself version of this and I love it. It lasts so long and stays shiny and chip free for about 2 weeks. I use Red Carpet Manicure from Ulta and my light is LED, and only covers the tips of my fingers. This stuff really can take some abuse.

However, it does take me an hour and the removal is a bit tricky. I’ve seen the do-it-yourself versions on-line and was wondering if it looked OK. The lady at the nail salon told me you had to use pure acetone to remove the stuff though. I wonder if I should be worried about this? I think the UV cookers are rather light sunlight, but it does seem a bit creepy. The salon I usually go to is kind of expensive, so I think they try to do little things to make it seem like you’re getting more value for your money.

I think the no hand massage would really make me sad. One of the main reasons I have my nails done is for the pampering! Hi Jenna, I’m glad you found the article informative. I’m not sure that the chemicals involved in gel nail polish are any more caustic than the ones in regular nail polish. It doesn’t smell any worse, and it does last a long time. Just found this because I have been doing Shellac nails for about a year and was intrigued by another brand. I like Shellac but am getting tired of the same few colors to choose from.

I was told by my manicurist that the lamps are similar to a tanning bed lamp so if I wanted to rub sunscreen into my hands before I left home it would soak into my skin and I wouldn’t need gloves and my whole hand, finger tips too, would be protected. Hi Camille thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. I haven’t tried the Shellac nails only the OPI product, but like you I wasn’t excited about the color options so I sort of stopped having them done. I have to say I’m really happy with the staying power of the polish over the silk wrap. I don’t know anything about putting a gel topcoat over regular polish, I’ve only know what my manicurist has told me and what I’ve tried myself.

Memphis that does the wraps and I’ve lost her. There is an art to it. Loved them when I had them though. I tried a silk wrap here in LA but it was really time consuming to do and honestly didn’t last that much longer than the gel.