One of my biggest pet peeves is painting my nails and not even 24 hours later having them chip! I love having my nails painted, but I hate spending all that time doing them and waiting for them to dry and then having them chip so quickly. The year I got married I started getting gel manicures and soon I was hooked! It was great, my nails dried very quickly, they never chipped and they were starting to actually grow; I have really brittle nails that break easily 😦
After months of getting them done at the nail salon it became quite costly and time consuming, so I decided to look into a system I could use at home. I ended up ordering the same brand that my salon used, Gelish, on Amazon <– my go to for everything!! The initial investment of the UV light and polishes was worth it for as much as I was getting my nails done. Now don’t let me fool you, I still like to go and have my cuticles done and be pampered every once in a while! So every few times I do my nails, I still go to the nail salon for a clean up.
Below is what I use to do my gel manicure at home.
- UV Light
- PH Bond
- Foundation Gel
- Colored polish (Pictured- You’re so sweet you’re giving me a toothache)
- Top It Off
- Cuticle Oil
You want to start with a fresh nail, make sure all your previous polish is off and you don’t have any lotion etc on your nails. I also like to buff them to be extra sure they’re clean. First I use the ph bond on my nails and then cure each hand for 30 seconds in the light. Next I use the foundation gel on each nail, make sure you’re not overdoing it, you just want a thin layer, then cure for 30 seconds two times on each hand. Then I use the colored polish, I really like to use more neutral colors like pale pinks. The Gelish color You’re so sweet you’re giving me a toothache is definitely one of my favorites! I put one thin coat and then cure under the light again for 30 seconds two times on each hand. I do two coats of the colored polish so after the first coat and curing it, I do it again. Lastly, I do a thin layer of the top it off and cure for 30 seconds two times on each hand. After you have finished you will put some of the cleanse on a paper towel and lightly rub it on each nail to make sure the polish is set. I like to finish it off with the cuticle oil on each nail bed, it just adds a little shine and it is nice and moisturizing. That’s it! I’m usually set for about two weeks.
If this seems like a little bit too much work or you’re not sure you want to invest in all of the equipment, I have also tried Sally Hansen’s Miracle Gel. This is a great alternative to the gels because it definitely lasts longer than regular nail polish and also dries a lot faster! All you need is the color polish you like and the gel top coat, which makes it really easy to travel with. I’m always doing dishes, cleaning etc., so for me it chips a little quicker than I would like, but I have heard people say that it has lasted them a good 10 days.
I would love to hear of any other long lasting nail polish techniques tips and tricks!