I do love the look and feel of gel polish on my nails. As someone who could never wear traditional nail varnish as I have really sensitive skin, I was delighted to discover that the new gel polishes do not have the same rash-inducing effects. Furthermore, gel doesn't chip nearly as much, and allows my nails to grow to a decent length.
Like many women today, I am a slave to the gel nails. At £20 a time though, it is by no means a cheap luxury. To keep them looking lovely and chip-free, I really need them re-done every two weeks. Especially as a new mum, when I've forever digging around in a nappy bag or washing my hands for the fiftieth time in a day.
Gel polished nails every 2 weeks = £520 a year. Wow!
My gel polished nails every 2 weeks = £35 a year. How?!
Well, after a few months of dishing out far too much money to beauty salons, I decided to buy my own UV lamp and polishes, and indulge in DIY manicures. On a friend's recommendation, I purchased a new lamp from an eBay store for £15, base/ top coats (£7 for both) and several coloured polishes (about £13).
Polishes can be expensive if you buy the branded ones. I bought Blue Sky polishes after reading reviews on-line, and I am quite happy with the quality despite their cheaper price tag (around £3-4 per bottle).
The first time, I made mistakes- I piled the polish on far too thick, and of course, it pooled in the side of my cuticle. After a few goes though, I mastered the art of applying several very thin layers to create the perfectly polished nail. And I've never looked back! I actually find it much more convenient... if a "chipped nail" disaster happens now, I don't need to wait two weeks to get perfect nails again- I simply touch it up at home!