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Review Gelish Nail "Polish" Treatment

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Time2Bme
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Sun Dec 12, 2010 5:11 pm      Reply with quote
10 days ago, I had my first manicure with Gelish rather than traditional nail polish and I am VERY happy with it. There was a thread for reviews on Shelac, but because it is a different product, I thought I should start a new thread. Here is the Shelac thread:
http://www.essentialdayspa.com/forum/viewthread.php?tid=39789&highlight=gelish

Similar to Shelac, Gelish is a gel treatment that is applied similar to nail polish. After the application, Gelish is cured / dried under a UV lamp. The polish is dried as soon as your manicure is finished - no worries about ruining your nails on the way out of the salon. It is applied over your own nails, so it shouldn't be as hard on your nails as artificial gel nails (or so I've been told). What sold me on this product was how much the staff at the salon were raving about it. Many of them had given up on manicures, because they only got chipped at work or their nails were so short and soft that they didn't grow. My nails stopped cooperating with me as soon as the cold weather arrived. They split and peel constantly. They were getting so short that they were literally peeling into the pink part of my nail. It was becoming painful. When I was getting mine done, another woman was getting her's done. She only uses the clear coat. She is a nail biter; this has allowed her nails to grow. When she feels like using nail polish, she uses traditional colour polish on top of the Gelish and then uses an acetone free polish to remove it. The Gelish is still fine underneath.

I love dark nail polish, but hate the chips that inevitably come within a day or two (if I'm lucky) of doing my nails. I use OPI colours and always do a base coat, 2 coats of polish and a top coat. While it lasts better than if I don't do all the steps, it still doesn't last like this one has. Even after 10 days, my nails look great. They are as shiney as they were the first day I had them done. The only thing that looks a little different is that I have a small amount of growth at my cuticle. It is very slight and my nails look fine. The salon told me that most people can go 3 weeks between manicures, as long as I don't mind a little bit of growth. If the colour was really light, the 3 weeks wouldn't be an issue at all. With the darker colour, I'll have to see whether I can go a full 3 weeks. Obviously the drawback is that you have to really like the colour on your nails until you have it removed.

I'm very happy so far. I'll continue to post after more time has passed and after I have had the polish removed. The purseblog forum has a great thread on Gelish. It has the colour wheels attached and many of the posters have done their own nails. Here is the thread on that forum ... I'm hoping it is okay to link it. I apologize if that's not okay - please let me know.

http://forum.purseblog.com/the-beauty-bar/gelish-soak-off-gel-polish-606728.html

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Fri Dec 17, 2010 7:42 pm      Reply with quote
I am still loving Gelish. After 14 days, I went for a 'fill'. They use a file to rough up the top of the Gelish. It isn't filing your nail - just the Gelish. They treated the nail with the base coat, 2 coats of polish and then top coat. My nails look as good as they did the first time. In 45mins, I was completely finished and best of all left with 100% dry nails. It takes some getting used to - it seems very strange not to have to be careful with your freshly done nails.

My nails are growing for the first time since the cold weather arrived. I probably could have stretched my nails for another week ... it all depends on how much the new growth bothers you. I wanted to have my nails look nice around Christmas and New Years, so I spread out my manicures accordingly. If I hadn't chosen such a dark colour or if I wasn't being particular, I could easily have waited closer to the 21day mark.

I made my next appointment for 2 wks later. My plan is to change my colour ... I'll post again when I've gone through the removal process and recolour. My nail tech had taken the Gelish off of her nails and hadn't had the opportunity to reapply. Her nails looked fine. She said that her nails were fine - not damaged at all. She did warn me that it is really important to have it removed properly and not pick it off. If you pick it off, you could damage your nail.

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Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:42 am      Reply with quote
Sounds neat, will tell my sister about it!
personally I hate manicures and would rather do my own nails!

But if you want a product that hardens your nails right away and gets rid of split nails try Mavala scientifique nail hardener.
-it only works on bare nails I was told.
seems expensive as a 2ml bottle is around $13 and the 5ml large size is almost $20 but the large size lasts me over a year.

so far it is the only nail hardener that works for me.
I can't find it near me so I have to get it online or order it from the company's head office.

Also, using the Mavala base coat, 1 or 2 coats nail polish- the darker shades (use the shade Las Vegas #33, ) which is a dark red almost black.
I've been able to get 1 week + chip free and I do a lot of stuff where nails can get ruined.
only reason I might change my polish every week is I like other shades.

another thing is the Mavala top coat is quite shiny and almost every week I have a few people ask where I get my nails done.
I know that is supposed to be flattering, but when people stop you all the time to ask...it gets kind of annoying.
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Tue Dec 21, 2010 2:19 pm      Reply with quote
can you use this product on nails that are damaged from taking off artificial nails. I took off my nails about 2 months ago. They are slowly getting better, but have a little more to go before the damaged part is gone. Would this be a good product to use on them to help them grow without damaging them.

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Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:32 pm      Reply with quote
sherryf13500 wrote:
can you use this product on nails that are damaged from taking off artificial nails. I took off my nails about 2 months ago. They are slowly getting better, but have a little more to go before the damaged part is gone. Would this be a good product to use on them to help them grow without damaging them.


Mavala sells some nail kits to repair damaged nails, that are from fake nails or whatever.
I think there is some kind of serum you brush on, cuticle cream, not too sure of the rest.

http://www.feelunique.com/brands/mavala/revive-nail-care

I haven't tried the nail kits as I buy the products separately at the store.
The kits are a better deal though,I just saw they had these a few weeks ago.
I'd get one but only need the nail hardener
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Wed Dec 22, 2010 11:05 am      Reply with quote
sherryf13500 wrote:
can you use this product on nails that are damaged from taking off artificial nails. I took off my nails about 2 months ago. They are slowly getting better, but have a little more to go before the damaged part is gone. Would this be a good product to use on them to help them grow without damaging them.


Sherry, I would think this would be a great product for damaged nails. When I first looked into Gelish, I was torn between it and Shelac. What pushed me in the direction of Gelish was (a) the colour choices: Gelish has a lot more than Shelac ... (b) Shelac is recommended for healthier nails. Because Shelac is a combination of a nail polish and a gel, it doesn't provide the same strength that a gel does. The Gelish is a gel that acts like a polish.

My nails were SO thin and peeling that I didn't think they would be able to do anything to me. When the nail tech did my nails, she said that Gelish is great for people trying to go back to their own nails after having artificial nails. My nails are actually growing.

One thing I have learned though .. is when your nails grow, if you need to do something to them - file them, don't clip them. Clipping them seems to make it more likely to chip the Geilsh. I haven't had any issues with filing my nails with the Gelish on them.

I am really loving the Gelish. I'm officially hooked !!

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Sun Dec 26, 2010 6:00 pm      Reply with quote
I actually had to file down all my nails, because they were getting too long Shock

I have NEVER had to do that during the winter, particularly when I'm working and typing on a computer for the majority of the day.

Love Love Love Gelish

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Tue Dec 28, 2010 10:30 pm      Reply with quote
I changed my Gelish colour for the first time today. I used Deep Sea; it is a beautiful blue colour with a purple undertone. In some lights, it looks more purple than blue. I either love or hate blues ... this one is in the love category!

The removal wasn't a big deal. She filed the top of the nail slightly to break the surface of the Gelish. It wasn't buffing my nail, just the Gelish. After that, she put cotton balls with remover on my nails and wrapped each finger with foil. I'm not keen on the acetone used to remove the Gelish; it is certainly a motivator to keep the same colour for a long time. You only have to use the acetone when you're removing the Gelish. To touch up the same colour, they just file the Gelish again and reapply the colour.

They used a wooden stick to remove the Gelish. It came off easily and my natural nails were 100% fine. In fact, I was surprised that they weren't yellowed. I expected them to be more yellow because I've had Gelish on them now for the past 6 weeks.

Even my thin thumb nails are growing. They actually look nice now - not all crooked, because of all the breaks and splits I had before I started with Gelish.

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Wed Dec 29, 2010 2:46 am      Reply with quote
and it is a good product and give you happiness when you use it look very pleasant.
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Sat Jan 01, 2011 2:06 pm      Reply with quote
Time2Bme wrote:
I actually had to file down all my nails, because they were getting too long Shock

I have NEVER had to do that during the winter, particularly when I'm working and typing on a computer for the majority of the day.

Love Love Love Gelish


Time2Bme, I went to the salon to had my first Gelish treatment done, but there is a very limited number of colors! Only 5 or 6, and no classic red!

But I agree, it's a very covenient way of getting the nails done in winter! No need to wait while it dries out.

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Sat Jan 01, 2011 2:47 pm      Reply with quote
Hi RS Smile
The place you went for your manicure, must not have carried many colours. Gelish actually has 48 colours and many places are advertising a special if salons pre-order the new 2011 colours. They are more expensive than regular nail polish, so many of the salons are slow to get all the colours available. The other thing I have found a little frustrating is that because the system is so new, there are a number of professionals out there who are stating things like "they don't carry that many colours" ... when in reality it is, 'we' don't carry the colour. I had one nail tech tell me about the cost of the system and the limited colours. She inflated the cost of the LED light by $400 - telling me it was over $700!!! When I told her that that went against what the research I had done, she quickly changed her tune.

What I ended up doing was ordering some colours that I really liked from the U.S. It is a silly thing to do, but I knew that I would be continuing to use the Gelish system and wanted to know that I could get the colour I wanted. I do the same thing when I go for a pedicure - I always bring my nail polish with me. Even though the Gelish isn't something you can apply at home - it won't dry with curing it under a UV or LED light, I know that I will have the colour I want when I go. I just bring my Gelish with me. They've gotten used to me at my salon !!! Laughing If you were going to go to the same place regularly, you could ask them to order a specific colour for you, or you can order it yourself and bring it in. There are a few places I found that didn't ask you to provide a licence # for ordering. I ordered from here, but I don't know that I'll do it again - UPS charged a stupid amount of money.

http://www.cosmeticslk.com/gelishsoak-offgelsystem.aspx.

Unfortunately most of them seem to only ship to Canada by UPS. UPS is outrageously expensive for internationaly shipping. Even though the shipping cost they quote you is approximately $16, they charged me an extra $44 when it arrived. They charged me brokerage fees. I'll never order from anyone who only ships UPS from the U.S. again. I had never used UPS before and was not happy when my colours arrived. Good news is that I probably won't have to. My salon is carrying a lot of colours right now. they only ordered a few in when they first got the Harmony Gelish line in, because they wanted to see what the response would be. They are carrying more and more colours now.

This blog has a lot of the colours on the thread. The thread is huge, but many of the posters have attached pictures wearing the colours; it gives you a really good idea about how the colour actually looks. I chose my colours by looking here. I found a few red examples:
http://forum.purseblog.com/the-beauty-bar/gelish-soak-off-gel-polish-606728-74.html

http://forum.purseblog.com/the-beauty-bar/gelish-soak-off-gel-polish-606728-68.html

http://forum.purseblog.com/the-beauty-bar/gelish-soak-off-gel-polish-606728-67.html

The other option I've heard of people doing is that they get a lighter colour of Gelish done - it will allow you to last the full 3 weeks without having to go for a re-apply, because the new growth isn't as obvious. when they want a darker colour for a change, they just paint over the Gelish with regular nail polish. When you remove the nail polish, you just have to make sure you use an acetone free nail polish remover. As long as it is acetone free, you won't damage the Gelish. When you remove the nail polish, your Gelish colour will still be there.

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Tue Feb 08, 2011 6:51 pm      Reply with quote
I am a nail tech and I have read that you can use the clear (simple shear?) as a color and then use regular nail polish over it. Do you use the gelish top coat over the clear before you put the regular polish on? Does the polish color stay on like the gelish color? I tried this when I first got it, and it didn't seem to work. Please help. I have many gelish clients that like polish colors. Also, gelish has a structure gel for repairs. I haven't purchased this yet, because I already have a uv gel that I use with forms. Also, I am finding out that the longer the gelish is left on, the harder it is to get off, especially if I do a back fill for french or a lighter color. When I go to take it off, it doesn't come off as easy and it dries out the nail more than it should. I think the longest to go would be 2 1/2 to 3 weeks. Please give me advice. Laughing

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I am an independently owned and operated american nail salon/spa. I try to use natural products other than acrylics and drilling the nails. I found Gelish August of 2010 and it has litterally changed womens lives. They say "I am their life saver". I tell them "it's my job to make my clients happy".
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Tue Feb 08, 2011 8:19 pm      Reply with quote
Time2Bme, thanks for introducing this Gelish treatment! I think, I love it as much you do Smile

It has been almost 6 weeks since I've had my pedicure done and it still looks good. Very impressed.

Time2Bme wrote:
I actually had to file down all my nails, because they were getting too long Shock

I have NEVER had to do that during the winter, particularly when I'm working and typing on a computer for the majority of the day.

Love Love Love Gelish

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Tue Feb 08, 2011 8:46 pm      Reply with quote
RussianSunshine wrote:
Time2Bme, thanks for introducing this Gelish treatment! I think, I love it as much you do Smile

It has been almost 6 weeks since I've had my pedicure done and it still looks good. Very impressed.



Hi RS
I'm so glad you like the Gelish. What colours have you used? I am very anxious to try a pedicure; I haven't let myself go there yet. I've been going every 2 weeks for my fingernails.

I love the Bella's Vampire and Night Reflection colour. I tried the Deep Sea, but don't think it is for me. It doesn't suit my skin colour.

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Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:41 am      Reply with quote
My salon carries only 9 colours. I have a very light beige colour on my toenails, and I had tried bright red, and pink on my fingernails. I also do my manicure every 2 weeks now, which saves a lot of time!

Time2Bme wrote:
RussianSunshine wrote:
Time2Bme, thanks for introducing this Gelish treatment! I think, I love it as much you do Smile

It has been almost 6 weeks since I've had my pedicure done and it still looks good. Very impressed.



Hi RS
I'm so glad you like the Gelish. What colours have you used? I am very anxious to try a pedicure; I haven't let myself go there yet. I've been going every 2 weeks for my fingernails.

I love the Bella's Vampire and Night Reflection colour. I tried the Deep Sea, but don't think it is for me. It doesn't suit my skin colour.

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Wed Feb 09, 2011 4:23 pm      Reply with quote
My salon has about 25 to 30 Gelish colors. I do not do on pedicures. My pedicure polish, base and top coats stay on pretty long. Also, it is alot of work to take off of toes. I have tried to order the new colors individually, but, I can't find them. I do not need all of the colors. They are similar to some that I already have. The darker colors under a 36 watt UV light shrinks away from cuticle and around the sides. I do not like that. The lighter colors do not do that. The first coat of dark gel polish doesn't do that. It is the 2nd coat and top coat. I am not sure if it is heating up too hot or what. I leave it in longer time because it is a darker color (as recommended).

Are you getting the same with the Gelish darker colors? Laughing

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I am an independently owned and operated american nail salon/spa. I try to use natural products other than acrylics and drilling the nails. I found Gelish August of 2010 and it has litterally changed womens lives. They say "I am their life saver". I tell them "it's my job to make my clients happy".
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Wed Feb 09, 2011 5:54 pm      Reply with quote
Darlene Altvater, I have not had a dark Gelish colour yet, so I cannot tell. Hopefully, my salon will get more colours soon. At least, that's what they promised Cool

Darlene Altvater wrote:

Are you getting the same with the Gelish darker colors? Laughing

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Sat Feb 26, 2011 7:52 pm      Reply with quote
I've always used the darker Gelish colours. Bella's Vampire is my favourite colour, but I also like Night Reflections.

Recently, I've been put off of Gelish. I strongly suspect it is due to the nail tech and not the product. She is a sweetheart and I always enjoying seeing her, but the last 3 applications haven't lasted on me. I'm lucky if I get 3 days before it either chips or peels. I think it is because she is applying the product too thickly, but even though she has tried to correct it, it is continuing to happen. While she always says to come back if there is any problem and they will correct it (free of charge), she is so busy that there are NEVER any openings. There are only 2 nail techs at the spa I was going to and they are always booked.

I tried Shellac this week and ... so far ... like it better than Gelish. It is much thinner - more like regular nail polish, but my nails still feel protected. They don't have the same number of colours, but the colours they do have are very similar to the OPI colours. The colour Fedora is very similar to OPI's Lincoln Park After Dark and Red Baroness is very similar to I'm not really a waitress. They are coming out with more colours at the beginning of March. Here is the link to the product:
http://www.cnd.com/Products/Color/shellac-colors.aspx

The other thing I like about the Shellac is the removal strips. When my salon removes the Gelish, she soaks cotton balls in acetone and then wraps my fingers in foil. I still end up with acetone all over my finger. When I got the Shellac application, they used the removal strips from this company to remove the Gelish. The Gelish is a lot more difficult to remove. The strips keep the acetone contained in the strip and on the nail. My hands didn't smell like acetone after I left. When I get a removal of the Gelish, my hands smell all day.

I have to see how the Shellac stands the test of time; I am on day 4 and it looks perfect. Shellac appears to be more popular in this area; there are a number of salons who do it. Most of them don't charge you for a removal if you are having a colour application. If your's does, it is definitely worth asking about it. Most of the ones I spoke to were very willing to skip the removal charge if you were going to have regular applications. At this point, I'm certainly leaning towards Shellac, mainly because the spa I went to has a lot of staff and very convenient hours; I won't have an issue getting in to get my nail repaired if it does chip.

With Shellac, you get a fresh application each time. With Gelish, they will file down the product and reapply the same colour over it. With Shellac, you always have the Shellac removed and a new application put over it. The nail tech who did my nails showed me how to conceal a chip if I wasn't able to get to the salon. She had a small chip in her's; she used the OPI nail polish and touched it up. It matched the colour very well. With Gelish, the nail polish was so much thinner, that any touch up with a similar colour didn't provide enough product. There was a noticeable ridge where the chip was. I also got a noticeable ridge after the first week where the new growth was. The ridge often caught on my hair. To help alleviate it, I'd gently buff the ridge and then apply a top coat. It helped some, but it was still there.

Price wise, Shellac and Gelish are pretty similar. They charged me $35 for a refill of Gelish (same colour) and $55 for a new colour application. For Shellac it is $45 each time. Both charge $20 for a removal if you're not getting a new application. Some places charge $35 for Shellac, but charge the $10 removal fee.

Another bonus about Shellac worth mentioning is that it is "Three Free". It doesn't contain Formaldehyde, Toluene or DBP (Dibutyl Phthalate).

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Wed Mar 02, 2011 7:48 am      Reply with quote
Thanks, Time2Bme, will def try it now.
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Tue Mar 22, 2011 2:21 am      Reply with quote
How would I find a salon that carries either the Gelish or Shellac products?
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Tue Mar 22, 2011 8:01 am      Reply with quote
I just had my first one done on Sat. with a clear and the American (not the extra white French) tips. It was supposed to be even lighter but she put two coats on the tips instead of one and used clear instead of the pale pink. Wasn't exactly what i wanted, but I don't think she had the colors to do the one she had in the pics on the wall. She said it was very popular and it was an interesting process. But I do love that I left with dry nails!
Love the shine and hardness! Usually I chip the ends by the first days but not yet. So we will see if it lasts the 2-3 weeks for me, but so far so good.

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Tue Mar 22, 2011 5:05 pm      Reply with quote
Time2Bme, thanks for such a thorough review! I had my first Shellac done exactly 7 days ago and it is still perfect!!! Love it, love it, love it!
Time2Bme wrote:
I've always used the darker Gelish colours. Bella's Vampire is my favourite colour, but I also like Night Reflections.

Recently, I've been put off of Gelish. I strongly suspect it is due to the nail tech and not the product. She is a sweetheart and I always enjoying seeing her, but the last 3 applications haven't lasted on me. I'm lucky if I get 3 days before it either chips or peels. I think it is because she is applying the product too thickly, but even though she has tried to correct it, it is continuing to happen. While she always says to come back if there is any problem and they will correct it (free of charge), she is so busy that there are NEVER any openings. There are only 2 nail techs at the spa I was going to and they are always booked.

I tried Shellac this week and ... so far ... like it better than Gelish. It is much thinner - more like regular nail polish, but my nails still feel protected. They don't have the same number of colours, but the colours they do have are very similar to the OPI colours. The colour Fedora is very similar to OPI's Lincoln Park After Dark and Red Baroness is very similar to I'm not really a waitress. They are coming out with more colours at the beginning of March. Here is the link to the product:
http://www.cnd.com/Products/Color/shellac-colors.aspx

The other thing I like about the Shellac is the removal strips. When my salon removes the Gelish, she soaks cotton balls in acetone and then wraps my fingers in foil. I still end up with acetone all over my finger. When I got the Shellac application, they used the removal strips from this company to remove the Gelish. The Gelish is a lot more difficult to remove. The strips keep the acetone contained in the strip and on the nail. My hands didn't smell like acetone after I left. When I get a removal of the Gelish, my hands smell all day.

I have to see how the Shellac stands the test of time; I am on day 4 and it looks perfect. Shellac appears to be more popular in this area; there are a number of salons who do it. Most of them don't charge you for a removal if you are having a colour application. If your's does, it is definitely worth asking about it. Most of the ones I spoke to were very willing to skip the removal charge if you were going to have regular applications. At this point, I'm certainly leaning towards Shellac, mainly because the spa I went to has a lot of staff and very convenient hours; I won't have an issue getting in to get my nail repaired if it does chip.

With Shellac, you get a fresh application each time. With Gelish, they will file down the product and reapply the same colour over it. With Shellac, you always have the Shellac removed and a new application put over it. The nail tech who did my nails showed me how to conceal a chip if I wasn't able to get to the salon. She had a small chip in her's; she used the OPI nail polish and touched it up. It matched the colour very well. With Gelish, the nail polish was so much thinner, that any touch up with a similar colour didn't provide enough product. There was a noticeable ridge where the chip was. I also got a noticeable ridge after the first week where the new growth was. The ridge often caught on my hair. To help alleviate it, I'd gently buff the ridge and then apply a top coat. It helped some, but it was still there.

Price wise, Shellac and Gelish are pretty similar. They charged me $35 for a refill of Gelish (same colour) and $55 for a new colour application. For Shellac it is $45 each time. Both charge $20 for a removal if you're not getting a new application. Some places charge $35 for Shellac, but charge the $10 removal fee.

Another bonus about Shellac worth mentioning is that it is "Three Free". It doesn't contain Formaldehyde, Toluene or DBP (Dibutyl Phthalate).
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Thu Mar 24, 2011 2:15 am      Reply with quote
What is the cost for Gelish?

I hate going to a salon for manicures,but am kind of curious!

My sister would probably like it.

But for me, oddly enough in the past few weeks I've had strangers ask me if I have gel nails as my Mavala top coat and nail poslish is super shiny Smile

I like changing my nail polish shades all the time,so probably not for me.
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Thu Mar 24, 2011 8:51 am      Reply with quote
Mine could not have been that much extra, I paid 50 dollars for a pedicure and the manicure with gelish American tips and polish. Normally at most salons I have paid 45 for a pedi and a mani with just a buff.

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Tue Mar 29, 2011 7:37 am      Reply with quote
BonnieisBananas wrote:
How would I find a salon that carries either the Gelish or Shellac products?


It is easier to find a salon that does Shellac than it is to find one that does Gelish. There is a spot on the CND website under Shellac that will tell you the locations of salons who will do Shellac. There are listing for Canadian as well as U.S. sites ... may also be international - I wasn't looking for that, so there may have been.

I wasn't able to find anything for Gelish. My hair salon had a sign up that was how I knew about it. The list for Shellac locations is by no means complete. There are many others and it seems to be more popular in the area I live in.

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