Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Once you go Shellac, you never go back

Hey, internet!

Yes, I am showing up after more than three months like a bad penny, or that boyfriend your mother always hated. What can I say? Life has been busy. But I figured if I was going to start blogging again, I'd cut out the apologies and excuses and just do it.

So here I am, ready to preach the gospel of Shellac nail polish by CND.

When you write about style, it sort of behooves you to stay current. And yet, for me, the "WTF is that???" stage lasts much longer than it does for the stereotypical hard-core cutting-edge fashionista.)

Examples? OK-how's this: I'm just getting used to skinny jeans and smoky eye makeup. Yes, really. And I'm still not there with jeggings or those platform shoes that make women's feet look like horses' hooves.

This makes me a style conservative ... which should be an oxymoron, but there you go. Anyway, I figured that the internet exists so people can find and bond with like-minded weirdos. I also figured that there might be more style conservatives like me out there. People who have never tried a Shellac manicure.

If you are one of these people, put this blog down and go get one.

Here's what you need to know:

1. These aren't acrylics or gel nails. The application is almost exactly the same as regular nail polish; base cost; two color coats; one top coat. You just have to cure the nails in a UV light box for a couple of minutes after each coat.

2. The color selection isn't fabulous, but if you like nudes, beiges, pinks, and reds, you should be OK.

3. Shellac manicures last and last and last.

These are my nails after two and a half weeks. I've got to get them redone soon, but not because of chips. It's because there is significant growth visible at the base of the nails.

And I'm using my hands with no thought whatsoever for ruining my manicure. I open boxes and packages and clean house and fold laundry and my nails remain flawless, strong, and shiny. (I mean strong like I'm-pregnant-strong or I'm-a-teenager-strong, which is a nice change of pace from the peeling, breaking mess my nails have become in the last decade.)

The downside? I've already mentioned the limited color palette. Also, removing the polish is tricky. You have to wear removal-soaked pads for ten minutes, and even then, your manicurist might have to go at you with an orange wood stick. But it's not too bad.

But maybe I should tone down this rave review ... because the Shellac people have got me now. I have nails like a teenager and they're totally low maintenance. If I have to head to the salon to get them removed--well, it's a situation I can accept.

FWIW I've been to two salons. The fancy one charges $40 and the cheap walk-in place charges $25.

So anyway, I'm hooked. Any other users out there? Let me know if you've had a Shellac manicure and what you thought of it because I've clearly joined a cult.


  1. I am SO attracted to this my polish chips after about 8 hours...I wonder if I can get it in Oz? Hmmm will investigate x

  2. So glad you are back! I had never heard of a shellac manicure until 2 weeks ago when my 20yr old daughter discussed getting one with me. She decided to go for it and had a french style manicure done. She's very happy with it and the new growth is not as obvious with a sheer color.

  3. i started shellac a month ago and I too swear by it. I was confused when I tried another salon who said I was getting gels....
    The diff is the name. One is gels and the other is shellac. Procedure is the same. And if you like to pick at your nails, they will peel off. Otherwise, that orange stick with a 10 minute soak get them stripped very nice!

  4. I haven't had a manicure since my wedding in 2004; these kind of results may make me change my mind!

    BTW glad to see you back!

  5. Never heard of.
    Living in Positano might be the explanation.
    Glad to see you back!

  6. I like the idea of this, but I get sick of looking at the same color after about 3 days. Don't think I could handle 2 weeks!

    spamword: claspric - well, I guess I kinda was.

  7. I love that you posted this yesterday! I had made mani/pedi appointments for me and my girls in the afternoon and instead had her shellac me. I can't wait to see how they wear!! (so far so good I've been cooking/doing dishes/cleaning as is my job as the mom)

  8. Welcome back honey! Missed you! I tried Shellac a few weeks ago but for whatever reason it wouldn't stick to my nails. Best we could figure was the salon had just opened a bad bottle. I didn't have time to experiment again that day so I just had them do regular. Must try it - I'm rough on a manicure!

  9. I love shellac! I've done it 3 times.To the person who said it didn't stick to her nails, look on youtube or the CND website to see how its done.When you go to a salon ,you'll know what the exact steps are and that the techs are doing it the right way. Some salons are NOT.

  10. Hello Poppy! It's Madolyn ... I was in Winnetka over the 4th, and my sister and I went to "Botanic Nails" in the village (or whatever it's called -- here in chowdah-land we call it the "town centa"). We both got shellac'd. They charge $35, and the application on one of my thumbs wasn't perfect. But I had pretty red nails for two weeks. I got a new application back home here in Belmont at a "chop shop" for $25, and I tried a new CND shade that's a pearly shrimp pink. I love it.

    I'm now on my 4th round of shellac; twice before I used CND's classic red, and one other time I went to a salon that did not carry CND but only offered a brand called "Gelac" by IBD. I did not like this brand nearly as much as CND; the color selection was not as good (I wanted red but ended up with a bad bright orange) and it didn't wear as long.

    Another thing ... JeannieB is one of my sisters closest friends! Do you two know each other? What a small world. Poppy, I promise I'll call you next time I'm in town. xoxo


Gentle Readers:

For the time being, I've turned off comment moderation. Please don't spam; it's not nice.

xxx, Poppy.