I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with this product. I’m currently loving it. But I’ll explain a little bit about why I don’t love it too.
For those that are unfamilar, although it’s been around for a while an I’m extremely late getting on the bandwagen here…Sensationail is a gel system that you can use at home. At the moment it costs about £70…although they have been £85 and £45. I got mine for £45, which I think was an introductory price. Anyway if you go to a salon and get your nails done you’re looking at about £15-25 a time, depending on your location. So in comparison the initial layout for the product repays itself relatively quickly. The initial package you get is said to last for at least 10 manicures, so roughly that would cost you £150 in salon visits. Sounds appealing.
A quick tutorial on how it actually works can be watched here:
I won’t bore you with a repetition on how I do it. I’ll just review it.
Now it claims to last for two weeks, I’ve never had a manicure last for that long. I had ten days, but by that point I had ingrowth and I was bored with the colour, so I messed around and peeled it off (it’s not as bad as it sounds…i’ll explain more later). But I normally get chips before then. You can save your manicure and redo some nails that get chips and extend it that way. I like the system. Regular nail polish on me would literally last an hour – so it’s a way to do my nails and have them last longer than an hour – which is a bonus.
Now the problem with why it doesn’t always last the 14 days, is mostly down for application (at least it is for me)…when my nails are longer and I can paint the free edge and cap it without a problem my nails last longer. Shorten nails I don’t cap as well and it can lead to chips. Also overloading your brush with product and letting it well into the base of your nail can also lead to early peeling. To get full coverage, apply more thin layers, not more product per layer.
Now getting this product off…I have to say is DIFFICULT. You sit with pure acetone on your nails and then scrap it off, and whilst it will eventually come off and I filled with dread at the thought of exposing my nails to acetone for that long. I use to just scrap them – which is actually damaging. Combining this with the face you have to do it ever 10 days or so. It’s damaging to your nails. I have grown my nails countless times only to have them break from this removal method.
However, it is a catch-22. My nails only get longer through the aid of Sensationail – I am less likely to bite and mess with my nails if they look pretty. So now to get around it I add an additional step. I dehydrate my nails with the cleanser, prep with primer, then add a base coat of a clear nail polish and let that dry. Once dry I then add the primer again and carry on with the base coat as normal. Now this will probably will chip sooner than just using the gel. But it saves with taking it off, so I really recommend it. I’ve also got 10 days out of it using this method – so it’s not such a big deal. Now my nails aren’t prone to breaking because I can just gently peel off the gel with the removal scraper. There is minimal damage to my nail – often none at all.
Another great tip….I can still use regular nail polish with it – as long as you sandwich it between the base and the top coat gel, you can paint your nails with your regular nail polish – just make sure you let the nail varnish dry properly before putting the clear top coat on.
The different colours are reasonable value too, at about £15 a bottle. It works out about the same as a high end nail polish. Even if you just buy clear and buy cheaper nail polish you’ll still going to prolong your manicure.
It’s taken me a long period of trial and error to find a method I like…and I still can’t explain why sometimes my nails will last 10 days and others one before one of them peels off. But the quick top up and retouch on one nail throughout the 10 day period normally gets me through a fortnight with a nice manicure. The base coat of regular nail polish gets my changing up my colours very quickly without the dread of spending an evening with acetone and a scrapper.