Monday, October 15

Gel Nails...Are They Worth It?

On Saturday, I went and got a Luxury Gel Manicure at Chelsea Nails in Poole. I was invited for a Complimentary Treatment* so firstly have to say a HUGE thank you to Chelsea. It was extremely generous and she has now gained a new customer from me!

Nail History
When I was 15, I used my pay check from my waitress job to get Acrylic nails done. I went to a Chinese salon who drilled, damaged and basically ruined my nails. After a year, they were looking very sorry for themselves. I tried to grown them out but I just broke and chipped them all the time (very frustrating). I have a confession bad habit of biting my nails too, especially when I'm anxious or stressed. For the past few months, I've been sticking nails on but the glue isn't exactly nice and they often ping off at the most inappropriate times!

What are Gel Nails?
You can get gel extensions (like acrylics) or just the 'UV polish' on your natural nails. This is the option I went for despite having really short nails. It meant less damage to them and a long lasting colour, so no chipping or re-painting!

How does it work?
Cured under a UV lamp, the colour dries instantly and stays super glossy for roughly 3 weeks. There are options available in natural, coloured, french or glitter finishes. The process takes about 40 minutes with a coat applied and repeated after leaving your hand under the light for a few minutes. It is super easy and comfortable.

Luxury Gel Manicure
Chelsea gave me a 'luxury' manicure which involved leaving my hands feeling super soft and youthful. The treatment lasted 60 minutes while she softened, pushed back and trimmed my cuticles. My hands were then buffed, massaged and smothered in moisturising hand cream (which smelt amazing!), before being wrapped in warm mittens for around 10 minutes to give ultra soft, nourished hands. This was so relaxing, and really improved my dry skin. She finished by filing and shaping my nails before applying my chosen nail colour. I went for a black with glitter in, as this matched my outfit and I thought would go with any other outfits over the next few weeks. Next time, I'll be picking a warm, neutral Autumn shade.

How do you remove them?
Chelsea recommended soaking them in acetone if I wanted them off but it's much better to go back to your Nail Technician and have them properly removed. Or, just have them re-done when the re-grown is starting to show. 

How much are they?
It varies from salon to salon but Chelsea is super cheap at only £15 for the gel polish and £20 for the luxury. You get a stamp on her business card and after 6 visits, a free gift! Ooohh. I'm happy to pay this as to me, it saves so much time painting them. Lifting boxes at work means they often chip after a day or two, but with the Gel manicure, no problems at all!

Would I recommend them?
Absolutely. It felt really odd not having to wait for them to dry and after a few days, they obviously haven't budged or caused me any problems. I'm quite harsh with my nails but I don't have to worry about them chipping at all. As you can see, my nails are really short so I'm going to leave the Gel on and let them grow. They honestly look a million times better in person. I've been getting lots of compliments, even from my boyfriend!

If you live near Poole or Bournemouth, I really recommend popping to see Chelsea in her salon. You can find her details on her website here. How cute is the set up too?! I was allowed a cheeky cupcake and given the cotton gloves and a nail file as well. When I left, I felt really happy and pleased with my visit. I've never been able to communicate well with technicians like I did with Chelsea, she was great to chat to and didn't hurt me one bit. I'll be back soon to get them re-done!

What do you think? Do you have Gel Nails or are you interested in getting them done?

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*This is not a sponsored post, I didn't have to write it but I was just so happy with the treatment I received, I think Chelsea Nails deserves the recognition :)
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