I was dubious when I heard about Creative Nail Design’s Shellac polish. Riiiight. I’m sure it doesn’t budge for two weeks. Sure.
Then Twitter started buzzing with praise for the gel-like polish that dries in minutes and wears incredibly. My nail-obsessed friend Kisten (who blogs at Polish Pauper) chatted me up about Shellac. And the tough polish started popping up in conversation all around town. Still, I was skeptical. Was it really worth the $45?
So when Polished, the mini-chain of nail bars, invited me to give Shellac a test drive, I jumped at the chance.
I had the perfect test, I thought, of the polish’s durability: A trip to New York City and my three times a week swim sessions. Surely Shellac couldn’t stand up to that abuse.
Even with all the carry-on lugging I did at the airport, the polish on my nails held up well. I lost the corner of a nail because of my suitcase, but the crazy thing is, the nail underneath broke a tiny bit, but the Shellac polish was intact. I gently filed the nail and carried on.
I was stunned that my nails were growing so fast. Usually, the split or peel before they get a chance to get much past my fingertips. While perhaps not that extreme, I felt a little like Barbara Streisand in “The Prince of Tides,” my long nails becoming a character unto themselves.
After two weeks of swimming and travel, my Shellac polish gave up after an early morning swim at the Y. My thumb nail was missing a chunk of polish. And here’s where the story takes a turn — I tried so very hard not to pick at the chippy polish, but I couldn’t resist. And I was immediately sorry. The polish peeled off my thumb easily, but took a layer of my nail with it. It didn’t hurt per say, but I could feel it.
My second mistake was trying to save myself a return trip to Polished to have the Shellac removed. Take it from me, soaking your fingers in acetone is not fun or as effective as you might think. Leave removal to the professionals.
I will get a Shellac manicure again (Shellac pedis are available too), but I’ll likely wait until the new batch of colors land in Charlotte. Polished says they expect to be among the first in town to receive in March.