Amber Katz

All About the Gel Manicure

Want a flawless mani that lasts two weeks with nary a chip?

The salon gel manicure may be just the thing you're looking for. Currently, the three brands offering long-lasting gel formulations are OPI (Axxium), CND (Shellac) and Dashing Diva (Gelife).

The gel polish is painted on like regular polish, but you dry under a UV light in between layers for 30 seconds. Once your nail technician is finished painting on the gel and you've dried for 30 seconds, you're free to go with zero additional dry time post-mani. (Usually, two layers and a top coat are used.) Another benefit of the gel manicure is that it produces a radiantly reflective shine that your garden-variety polish can't come close to replicating.

So what are the downsides of a gel manicure? The service costs upwards of $40 and the initial gel application will take a bit longer than a standard manicure. Your nail will also more than likely showcase a growth at the base that will contrast with your polish, unless you opt for a light shade. When it comes time to remove it, soaking off the gel is a 10-minute commitment. Lastly, lacquer chameleons will chafe at the permanence of a two week-plus manicure.

 

Amber Katz is the founder and editor of Beauty Blogging Junkie, a pop-culture infused beauty blog. She contributes regularly to the New York Press and Girlfriend Getaways about must-have hair and beauty products.

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Fashion & Style
All About the Gel Manicure