Sunday, 25 September 2011

.Shellac Manicure.

Two blog posts in two days! I'm doing good :)
Today i'm going to write abit about Creative Nail Design (CND) Shellac. This isn't necessarily a new treatment, it has been out well over a year, but I think more people need to know about it, especially people like myself.

I used to be a false nail girl, through and through. I wore them constantly, because my nails never grew. It was a vicious circle. Of course my nails weren't growing, I was abusing them with all sorts of horrible products and chemicals sitting on top of my natural nail bed suffocating it and making it brittle, sore and paper thin. The 'eureka' moment came when I was on holiday in Egypt this January with my boyfriend Tom. My nails were barely nails anymore, and I couldnt wear my beloved falsies on holiday. I opted to painting them a nude colour and hoping the sun might make them grow abit. I made a vow to myself then, as I looked down and my poorly and sore nails to never wear gels or acrylics ever again. And I haven't. And I won't. And it's all thanks to Shellac.

I'm not going to go into the science bit behind Shellac, simply because I prefer to let you know exactly how the procedure works and how it lasts. If you would like to know more about the science bit, pop to my friend Sally's blog to read more about it! Shellac is applied in exactly the same way as a bog standard nail polish, (base coat, two colour coats and a top coat), however where it's different is it is cured under a UV lamp, after every coat which bonds the product to the nail - think the way you would have gel nails applied, without the damage and with a lovely colour that lasts. And when I say it lasts, I really mean it. I have had the same polish on my hands for two and a half weeks before. No chips, no tears and when it's removed, no damage to your natural nail. Don't believe me? Here is a picture of my nails after two and a half weeks, with my usual beloved colour 'wildfire', a gorgeous red shade.

No chips even after two and a half weeks - Just abit of regrowth.
I went yesterday to get my Wildfire removed and have another manicure. My lovely best friend Cassie owns a salon in the town I live in, and she does the most amazing Shellac - I'm not just saying that because i'm biased even though I am. But she is incredibly talented, especially when it comes to nails. I met her at college where we were both studying beauty therapy and was always amazed at how good she was at false nails, manicures and nail art. Her salon is gorgeous and is called Vanity. I will post all the information of her salon at the end of this post. If you live in my area, I strongly suggest you go. Amazing treatments at affordable prices.
I normally never stray from my beloved 'Wildfire' colour as I just love red nails. However, Shellac brings out seasonal colours and Cassie had just got in the most amazing matte grey shade called 'Asphalt'. I thought I would have a change, and as i'm always thinking, I asked her if she could do my ring fingers in gold glitter, so I could wear gold and silver without clashing with the grey. (Glitter nails are not included in Shellac, it's something Cassie has created herself).

CND Shellac Colour - Asphalt
Nice isn't it? So, I bit the bullet (how very dramatic), and off we went. Here is a step by step Shellac application...

1. Prep nails - File, cuticle care, buff.
2. Apply one coat of Shellac base coat. Cure under UV lamp for ten seconds.
3. Apply one colour coat of chosen Shellac shade. Cure under UV lamp for two minutes.
4. Re-apply colour shade and cure again for two minutes.
5. Apply one coat of Shellac top coat. Cure under UV lamp for two minutes.
6. Wipe off any sticky residue.
7. Apply nail oil and hand moisturiser.

Glitter: For the glitter, Cassie applied my base coat and one coat of colour. Before I put my hand in the UV lamp, she dipped my chose finger in a pot of gold glitter. Top coat was applied as usual.

Cuticle care

Cuticle care

Base coat

Colour coat

Curing the coats.


Applying the glitter.

Top coat.
Shellac is a relatively quick treatment. By an experienced therapist it can be done in under an hour - lunch break treat! Here are some pictures I took this morning of the finished article - I absolutely love this colour and i'm glad i've had a change. The glitter is also a lovely effect.

So there you have it. I will never ever go back to false nails, all thanks to Shellac. It is a fantastic treatment to help your natural nails grow and strengthen. Mine have never been as strong as they are now. Pricing vary from place to place, ranging from £15-£50. Cassie charges £18 for a manicure or a pedicure, which is fabulous value. Check out her website here.

Kate x


  1. Your nails look lovely! I love the glitter too :) x

  2. It looks awesome, but it's so hard taking off the shellac!

  3. Great post kate, Love the glitter too. And thankyou for the cheeky link

  4. Love the nails... Great recommendation! May be booking soon as not far from there! :D happy days!