Updated: Sep 6, 2019
I have only worked with natural nail care treatments. Seeing what damage some artificial nails and techniques to apply, infill or remove them was enough to keep me in the natural nail treatment section.
When Shellac become the brand and one of the first names to launch the gel varnish for natural nails instantly i was into my research about it. Shellac being the name people still ask for today and clients seem to know shellac meaning a gel curing polish. Gel polish is instantly dry, scratch and smudge resistant.
Manicure clients will all want healthy and strong nails, at any length or shape desired. Growing a nice looking nail can for some take some work. Regular manicure treatments can help stimulate growth and build strong nails. Once a healthy base has been established then shellac can be a desired polish. If you have brittle week or peeling nails it is best to work on the nails health first. This being because that although shellac can provide a layer of strength and protection the nails they need to be lightly buffed /dehydrated to adhere the gel, . If they are not strong enough once shellac polish has been removed you may find the nails will have a tendency to break, peel or crack and seem to appear weaker. If this is the case then once the shellac has been removed then it is best to give them a few rest bite days to let the nails natural oils rebuild. That is also recommended to allow the nails to breath, yes the nail plate has tiny pores. Long term artificial nails can case the natural nail to discolour and weaken due to lack of oxygen. Wearing strong colours like red can stain a nail if a base coat is not applied first to protect. The safest way to remove shellac polish is to wrap them with remover for 10 minutes. Longer should not be needed. Picking or peeling the shellac off is a definite no no. As the polish is pulled off the nail it will pull tiny bits of the nail plate away with it, leaving the nail weakened. If you cannot resist then book your removal in and re application or manicure service to keep them well protected. With good habits and knowing how you treat your polished nails is key for advice on what would suit you best.
All polished nails need to be cared for to ensure a long lasting finish. Before gel invention, uv and led curing, nail polish would take 10-15 minutes to dry. Clients would wait around for a drink after appointments before they left to prevent smudging them. Plus regular polish clients took good care of their nails. Using can opening tools instead of their nails, wearing gloves when washing up and cleaning were tricks to keep the polish wearing longer. Gel clients tend to be tough on their nails. Hence why companies claim a period of time it could last you. i.e up to 2 weeks.
Protecting your hands from excessive water contact and chemicals is vital to prevent them from wearing down and even fading.
Too much oil can penetrate underneath and lift polish so be careful of cooking and skincare products staying under your nails.
Most of all if long nails are important to you the do not use your jewels as tools.
Some common complaints :
A Peeling gel polish. If it is straight after your service this can be a result of too much natural oil on the nail plate before application, therefore further nail dehydration will be required. This is more common in younger nails. Peeling around a week onwards can be a result of contact with creams, lotions, chemicals that have been in contact and got under the nail and sealed edge.
Chipped nails are a sign of force that has been put on the nail. This can be simple everyday tasks we take for granted, like changing the bed, knocking or over stretching pressure on bending the nail. This can be instant or after a few days. It can be touched in which will only last a few days.
Wearing thin edges are a sign of the polish being worn down. In everyone this can be at different lengths of time. Usually seen around the nail tip and sometimes edges. Growing out polish can easily start to wear or lift at the cuticle line.
*A quick infill trick to stretch out your neat looking nails is to paint over the top of the gel. No base or buffing required just paint your chosen colour over the top and add a top coat. If your polish is still looking good after a week-10 days start to paint a clear top coat to keep it for longer. This can be done lightly every 2-3 days.
I hope this has helped you. If you have any further questions please get in touch, and remember look after your manicured nails!
x L x