Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Review and Tutorial: Sally Hansen Salon Effects in Laced Up

Do you guys remember the Minx nails craze?  I think all the big celebrities were sporting them for awhile.  Apparently they're nail strips that come in a variety of colors and patterns, are applied with heat, and are supposed to last up to two weeks.  Of course, they can only be applied by a licensed beauty technician in a salon and you can expect to pay upwards of $40 for a Minx salon manicure.  Boo! Tempting, but too expensive for me!

Well, a bunch of companies came up with products that give you the same look at a more affordable price. I've seen a bunch of nail polish strip kits anywhere from Sephora to ModCloth, but while at CVS the other day, I decided to pick up one of the Sally Hansen brand kits.  Cost me about $10.  Generally more than I like to pay for nail products, but a heck of a lot cheaper than $40.  I love DIY.

I thought this was the prettiest one on display, it's called "Laced Up".  It's basically a nude nail color with an allover black lace netting pattern for sort of a lingerie effect.  It comes with 16 nail color strips, a cuticle stick, a mini nail file plus buffer, and instructions.

Start with clean hands and nails.  If you have nail polish on (like I did prior to application) thoroughly remove nail polish and wash hands.  You want them oil and debris free so that the nail strips will adhere to your nails properly.  The instructions suggest buffing your nails and pushing down your cuticles to enhance application and adhesion.  I forgot to do both steps.  Oops!

The strips come in a variety of shapes and sizes.  Find the size that's right for each nail.  My nails are unusually narrow, therefore most of the sizes were too wide.  No worries, I just trimmed them to the correct width with a pair of scissors prior to application.

Once I choose the strip I want to use, I peel a clear film off the front of the nail strip as well as the adhesive backing behind it.

The nail polish strip itself is very flimsy, so take care when handling.  It's actual nail polish paint in strip form.  The box even says to throw away open and unused strips because they dry out fast!  I apply the strip to my nail, pressing firmly to smooth.

Then I fold the excess over the edge of my nail and sort of fold it under to form a crease along the edge.

Using the file, I file away at the edge until the excess breaks off, forming a smooth finish over the edge of my nail.  I repeat this process for the rest of my nails.

My thoughts are that Salon Effects are easy to apply, and if you choose an intricately patterned design, like I did, you don't have to worry about making mistakes because they're easily hidden.  I had a few wrinkles in some of them and no one notices, including myself.  This product is fun, relatively inexpensive, and it's hassle free because you don't have to worry about spills or drying time.  I'm not sure about lasting power.  I'll try them out for a week or so and will post an update on how they've held up.  To remove, simply use nail polish remover.

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