These kits come with three products -- an activator, the gel color, and a brush cleaner. The color I am going to show you today is Lily Pink.
How do you use them, you ask? Well you're in luck because I am going to tell you!
(WARNING: These pictures are not neat! Do not be alarmed :)
First of all, make sure all the caps are off on the bottles. You need to work quickly with these and unscrewing everything is going to cause your everything to dry before you are finished.
Next, what you want to do is apply the activator so it looks as if your nails are wet. The instructions specifically state to only do one hand at a time.
Next, you want to apply the gel color in thin coats while the activator is still wet. It's very important to not let the activator dry. The gel color will go wherever you painted the activator, so take caution not to get any of it on your cuticles and be careful not to flood your nails (I speak from experience). The instructions say the first coat will be streaky....but ALL of my coats were streakier than all get out.
|I know, they are a mess. It was hard to use okay?! :P|
You want to put the gel color in the cleaner polish once you finish one hand. First remove the excess gel color polish on a paper towel. Then, place the gel color top in the cleaner and cleaner cap in the gel color (to be used as your brush for the next hand). Then repeat on the other hand (activator, color, cleaner).
Repeat as many times as necessary to make the color opaque.
Now, onto the review of this...
I won't even beat around the bush. I was really disappointed in this product. It smells FOUL -- it has a very chemically smell and it actually gave me a headache by the time I was done (i.e.: gave up). If regular nail polish smells strong to you, this could very well be unbearable! I'd recommend doing them outside or somewhere with good air flow because the smell of this product is overwhelming.
The instructions state that the first coat of color will be streaky, but my entire mani was streaky. You have to have a VERY steady hand when doing this because it's easy for brush strokes to show through, as you can see in my pictures (I warned you!)
Also, like I said, make sure to be really careful when applying both the activator and the color. I flooded my cuticles on more than one nail and it was disastrous. Because the activator/color dry so quickly, it's tough to clean up with acetone and a brush. Imagine trying to remove dried concrete from your nails with a little eyeliner brush - that's how hard it was to clean up.
As for the wear, I can't tell you how long they last because I removed mine immediately after taking pictures. The product packaging reads, "Perfectly strong. Perfectly beautiful. And out the door in 5 minutes!" Upon researching a little though, I found that the product is getting some flack for not holding up like real gel nails should. People are experiencing cracking and chipping within a day, which defeats the purpose of a gel manicure in my opinion. Isn't the point of gel manicures that they're long lasting? Well, this product isn't.
The color of this isn't even anything extraordinary -- it's your regular ole run of the mill Barbie pink. I'd prefer to just paint my nails with a regular Barbie pink polish than waste my time (and money!) on this product.
These just aren't for me, but I can see where someone who doesn't change their polish every other day (like me) would benefit from this product. With practice, they might look better. However for me, the entire process as well as the final outcome was just not worth it. I might be able to get over the hassle of the application process if it looked good in the end, but it didn't. The polish was all streaky and the texture of my nails weren't smooth-as-glass like I like them to be (SV, I'm looking at you!) Plus, for the price of these (~ $12) you might as well just get them done at a salon where you know they'll look good instead of like a 5-year-old did them.
Also, if you are someone who kind of slops polish on when you're doing your nails then cleans up afterwards (like me), these might not be for you. The activator is very unforgiving so if you get any polish on your cuticles or have any flooding it's going to be a nightmare to clean up. I found that if you DO get any activator or polish on your cuticles or on the skin next to your nails, clean it up with acetone and a brush RIGHT AWAY. Don't wait until you have the whole hand done, because it will have dried to concrete by then. Luckily, you can use the foil method to remove the full mani and they come off pretty easily.
Will I use this again? Definitely not on my fingernails. I might try it on my toenails since I hardly change the color on my toes.
Nutra Nail UV-Free Gel Color Kits are available at drugstores or at http://nutranail.com for around $12. They're available in 12 shades on the website, but I only saw a few of them at my local Walgreens.
Have you guys tried this product? What are your thoughts on it?
This product was given to us for review purposes. Please see our Disclosure Policy for more information.