{ yum } grilled veggie sandwich
{ off topic } the Justin Bieber dream

{ road tested } nail shellac

Have you heard of Shellac for your nails? Nail polish that lasts for 2 weeks?  I'm sure you have and I am just now seeing the light.  If so, sorry.  This post is entirely a waste of your time.  xo

Anyway. Shellac. It's available in some salons and it is not the Gel product of ye olde days.  I promise.  I was never an acrylic girl because it really hurt me, nor was I a regular mani girl -- the paint wears off way too fast for it to be cost effective.  I have really nice, strong nails that lend themselves to an at-home mani rather well.  Typically, if I want my nails done for an evening or whatever, I do them myself. It still wears off though. Bummer.

Then I learned about Nail Shellac (by CDN).  The promise of shiny, no chip-or-wear polish for two weeks. Intriguing. The price was the kicker.  $30-40?  Um, well.  I think I'll just take my little bottle of Revlon and stay home, thankyouverymuch.

However...  A few weeks ago, I heard there was a nail tech apprentice in town who would do Shellac for $10.  ($20, if you want the full mani.)  I was totally in for a $10 try. Who wouldn't be?

I forgot to take pictures of day one.  But you know what?  It looked like a Day One Manicure, so...here's day 3:

nail shellac, day 3

No chips!  Shiny!

Day 6:

day 6

The only thing annoying me is how fast my nails are growing, thanks to the prenatal vitamins.  Also, don't look at my cuticles.  This is about the polish, people. 

And... day 14:


It worked. 

I actually wore it until today, which is like day 19.  But I wanted to take it off and to be able to tell you how it goes down.  Here are the details:

  1.  Every stage has a short curing process under a lamp.  Base coat, two color coats, two top coats. It took 15 minutes, total.
  2. It feels like nail polish.  Like if you put that many coats on, but nothing more. 
  3. They are immediately dry.  That part is weird.  I was walking around with 'delicate hands' for  a while, but it's not necessary.
  4. It stayed shiny to the end.
  5. There are no icky ingredients.  It's hypo-allergenic and contains no formaldehyde, toluene or DBP. 
  6. There aren't as many colors as regular polish to choose from yet.
  7. It's been around for a year, in May 2011.
  8. You remove it with acetone.  I soaked my nails for a few minutes in a small dish, and the polish peels off. Here's the most important part for me:  There was no nail damage.
  9. I would do it again.
  10. (Even if I didn't have access to a cheap version.  I'd do it before the holidays or a vacation or something.  Worth feeling 'done to the nails' without the work.)
  11. You could have this done with a clear polish, even... or a french tip, and then not worry about the regrowth as much.  Just a thought.
  12. I'm not getting compensated for this.  Just thought I'd share my experiment with you.  :)

Ok.  That's it.  Also, I turned 39 yesterday and still cannot believe it.  Ack.


It's going to be another great year.  I can feel it.  xo



i love that you had pink roses on your cake :)

Debbie Johnson

I love love love Shellac. I had been a "gel" girl for several years, but I would pick it off and my nails were so unhealthy due to the dremel tool she used every two weeks. She asked if I wanted to try Shellac a few weeks ago and I am in love with this product. My nails are so healthy and the polish stays on until you soak it off. I have NEVER had nails like this before. Yes my nails grew faster also and I'm NOT on prenatal vitamins!
Great product and I love a good manicure every two weeks. It makes me feel special.
Debbie in Oklahoma


I am not a nail polish kind of girl, mostly because it wears off in like two seconds. Really. And the cost of a "real" mani is a big turn off for something that isn't going to last too long... But, this shellac sounds interesting.

Happy happy birthday! (My three year old saw the picture and said "Mom! Someone is turning 93!" Bwa ha ha ha! Gotta love it.) I hope you had a wonderful day yesterday!


Happy Birthday! I just turned 39 a month ago. I still am in awe that it happened.

Love the nails. Unfortunately mine are pathetic nubs that don't grow well. I typically don't paint them due to their inherent peeling breaking nature. My toes though are a whole other story. I love having them polished.


Happy Birthday!

I love having my nails painted but never do it because I can't stand the chips after the first day-- I am excited to see that quite a few salons up here carry Shellac! I'll need to give it a try. Thanks for sharing the tip!


..you know black is my favorite color polish, right? Do they shellac in black? ;)

Dalai Lina

Happy Birthday! We are on the same track. And, I love my Shellac nails!!! I just got your red last week after I saw yours :)

Catherine Denton

Happy Birthday!!! Thirty-nine will be the best year yet! :D Thanks for giving us this tip. It sounds incredible! I may get my nails done now.
My Blog


Happy Birthday for yesterday. I wonder if Shellac is available here in Aus, probably not yet. I like the idea of getting it done for holidays or a trip, I used to get my eyeleashes tinted for that, especially summer holidays, beautiful lashes in the pool!


Happy Birthday! What an exciting time for you! And thanks for sharing about the Shellac. I'm going to ask my salon if they do that. I feel the same way about prices/nail polish/etc. I do my own at home and only occasionally.

Carrie of One Pink Duck

I am in KC...may I ask where you got this done
? Thanks so much , and congrats on the new baby!


Happy Birthday!! I am funny about nail polish. It makes me feel as if I have freakishly huge hands (actually, they are on the large side). It's the same as wearing lipstick. I feel sure the whole world is staring at my enormous painted lips (they are not). I must grow up some day.


Thanks for the tips. I've been thinking about it, but wasn't sure I wanted to spend the money. Happy Birthday!!


Happy birthday!

I've never had a proper manicure, I'm going to have to try it.


Isn't it great!! I always go natural with a tip for mine. I did get a super dark purple this time and love it but hate the regrowth look so back to natural next time but it was fun. Our local shops here in so cal will do it for $15 try it on your toe nails. I would always chip mine I have big feet and stub them constantly but it is FABULOUS!!! My pedi toes would last for a month!!! :)pure happiness.


Happy 39th! I had mine a few months ago. The first of many I'm sure!
I might have to try that polish - it looks great!

Katherine of Kitten's Lost Her Mittens

I hadn't heard of shellac, but it sounds cool! I never do the professional manicure thing, cause it's too much money for how short it lasts. But shellac would totally be worth a try. Thanks for sharing your experience!

Also, happy birthday!!!

Alicia@ eco friendly homemaking

I hope you had a Wonderfully Blessed Birthday! Your nail polish color is really pretty. Great Blog. Glad I found it!


Happy Late birthday!

And I've seen that Shellac advertised at the salon next to my work....hmmm, I may have to check it out.


Wow! Where have I been? I have never heard of this stuff and I am SOLD. I never get my nails done (toes are an exception during pregnancy when I can no longer reach). I would totally spend money on this. I'm simply amazed. Wonder if anyone does it around here. BTW, it's my 39th birthday today. It will be the first of many.


Happy Birthday! I hope you had a wonderful day. I've never heard of shellac for nails. I'll have to look into it the next time I'm at the salon...

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