Sorry for the corny title, but I couldn’t resist. This week I did something very girly…I got a french manicure. Now I have had professional manicures before, but I also have a DIY frame of mind. I believe that if you can do something yourself and are relatively good at it, then do it yourself and don’t waste the money! And because I am good at doing my own nails, getting manicures have always seemed like a frivolous expense, if you ask me. Not only that, but my natural nails are quite pretty, in my opinion, so I rarely paint them anyway. In the winter months the bitter cold does tend to make my nails break a little faster, and even though I won’t cry over a broken finger nail (unless it breaks low enough to tear the skin, then YOWZA!), I do sometimes paint them to help strengthen them some.
Then recently, through the use of a friend’s kit, I discovered gel nail polish. Now I’ll tell you, for a do-it-yourselfer, the gel nail polish and kit required for the process is stupidly expensive (about $12 for the bottle of nail polish that just so happens to be a fourth of the size of a regular bottle of nail polish, and starting at about $60 and WAY UP for light and kit), albeit cheaper than paying to get your nails done in the long run. However, the end result is rather nice and does make natural nails a whole lot stronger than ordinary, and it does last a couple of weeks. The downside (in addition to the cost and the lengthy procedure) to gel nail polish is removing the polish. What a nightmare! So, wanting to freshen up my finger nails this week for a job interview, I decided I would go to the nail salon and have them remove the polish – a mere $10.00. On my way there, I decided I’d go a step further and just get a manicure, about $25.00. Once there, I figured, what the hell, let’s get a professional gel manicure – $35.00. Then by the time I was in the seat to get my nails done, I decided to get a gel french manicure. I figured I may as well go for the gusto – $40.00! Yes I paid that. Don’t judge!
Removing the home gel nail polish proved to be very tedious, and then I learned from the manicurist that most of the at-home gel nail polish brands are actually damaging to natural nails. In fact they are just as damaging to natural nails as acrylic nails are. She informed me that if I want to continue to do it myself, the only type of gel nail polish that should be used is considered “peel off” gel. No it doesn’t really peel off, but it will remove a lot quicker and easier than the other types without damaging our nail. I just wanted to share that little tidbit for any of you DIYers out there!
Anyway, I got my first french manicure. Now at first, because gel nail polish is thicker than regular nail polish, I kept looking at my nails and kept thinking of how fake they looked. The thickness almost gives one the impression that I have fake nails on, which I don’t. Yes that bothers me some, because as I stated above, my natural nails have always been very nice and I have been proud of that. But here I sit three days later, and I have to say that I am hooked on the look! I cringe to admit it, but I may just have to fit regular manicures into my budget. Oh what would my frugal Grannie say?!! Oh well…I feel pretty. 😉