The desire to have a long-lasting chip-free manicure led to an explosion of gel manicure products. I have previously blogged about Sephora's home system; however, it does require a certain amount of ambidextrous skill to get both hands done right.
Today I am trying out a new product from Sally Hansen, Salon Insta-Gel Strips. Like the popular "sticker" manicures, the polish comes in plastic-backed strips that you smooth over clean, dry nails. For the gel version, you must also buff off any glossy nail areas and cleanse with an alcohol prep pad. Here is the video of the application:
I have the Sephora LED light which also has a 30 second timer. It worked just fine with the strip system.
I picked out a shiny silver snake pattern. The application went much easier and faster than a full gel manicure, although I had the same issue I have had with other strips. My nails have a lot of ridges and pits, and the stickers have trouble covering smoothly, especially on my index fingers. If you look carefully at the photo, you can see a small uncovered area on the tip of that finger.
I will keep you updated on the wear-power of this system and the degree of difficulty of removal. For now, it's the only way I will have patterned nails.
UPDATE...January 23, 2013
My reptile nails are no more. That tiny chip on the pitted index finger became a major chunk over 48 hours. I have had this issue with nail polish strips before, and I am not entirely surprised. The manicure did come off much more easily than a true gel polish with less damage to the underlying nails.
I am back to regular polish today; truth be told, I kind of like having an excuse to change colors often.