By now you have probably heard of Shellac manicure. Gel manicure is a hybrid of traditional and gel manicure.
After having spent at least 30 dollars each time at a salon I have purchased my own set to work with. Gel polishes are just like regular nail polish in application - no need for a separate brush and solvents.
The gel polish kits are now readily available at Walmart, Shoppers and Sephora and the price ranges from $55 to $190.
I initially had bought the Sensetionail kit from Walmart in the States for $50. The lamp that came with it is a LED one which I love as the curing time is much shorter (30-60 seconds per layer) than the UV lamp. The polish that came with the set however is not that great as they seem more brittle and harder to remove.
The brands I prefer are Harmony Gelish, Shellac, or Red Carpet.
I tend to buy the polish on Amazon as it is the cheapest.
You need to purchase the started kit (nail ph balancer, foundation, top coat, nail oil, lint free wipes, acetone and residue remover) and a UV or LED lamp and a color of your choice. You must have a lamp to cure the polish or it will not dry.
Doing the manicure is similar to regular manicure.
1. Put the ph balance liquid on all nails. Dry. No need to cure.
2. Thin coat of foundation - cure for 30 seconds. I found it easier to cure the 4 fingers of each hand then the thumbs.
3. Color 2 to 3 coats. Cure between each coats - 60 seconds.
4. Top coat - ensure the coat is thin and seal the edges of the nails. Cure 30-60 seconds.
5. Wipe off residue with link free wipes.
Just like any manicure it takes time and practice. One tip is to not rush. It is very important to put thin coats of polish and that they don't touch the cuticle.
I will have a separate post on the removal.