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Stuttering Shell: the nail files {1.13.12}

Friday, January 13, 2012

the nail files {1.13.12}

The Nail Files

last week, vicki & tara kicked off a weekly link up that is all about nail polish. you know, trends, manis, pedis, favorite brands, what color you're currently wearing, etc. being the slacker that i am, i didn't participate last week for the inaugural post. instead, i'm a week late, but all will be forgiven when i share with you all the gel mani i gave myself last friday.

yes, instead of posting with the nail files last week i was giving myself a mani instead. a gel mani. at home.

i can't take credit for the idea of the at home gel mani. i owe a huge thanks to my favorite beach bum who not only linked me to the blog post she found on pinterest {no surprise there}, but she also showed me the stuff to get while we were at ulta last week.

this is what you'll need:


it doesn't matter which color you choose {i bought sheer natural} because you need the small bottle of activator that is inside of the box...


just to let you know, there are more than three color choices for this kit. the kit was $11.99 at ulta and i also found it at cvs for $11.99. cvs had a $1.50 off coupon at the display and i also had a $5 cvs gift card so i got the kit for a steal. i will admit, i was skeptical. but, where else can you get a gel mani for less than $6?! and, even if it was a total bust at least i wasn't spending a lot of money on my nails, ya know?

anyways, here was my result:

{at home mani was done on friday, january 6th}

i used my own base coat, polish color & top coat {orly bonder, orly fowl play & seche vite}. i did have to use the cleaner that came with the kit to clean off the brush for the bonder because it did get stiff from coming into contact with the activator. my nails didn't take long to dry & i was quite pleased with the result. also, i didn't need to swipe my nails with rubbing alcohol to get a shine either {like you sometimes have to do with a professional gel mani}.

here is my manicure week later:

{please excuse my janky cuticles. my hands are a mess right now. blasted dry skin & eczema!}

i had minimal wear at the tips & one small chip on my left thumb. i'm super hard on my hands & nails. i don't wear gloves when i clean or wash dishes. i use my nails to peel labels and open things. i am a manicurist's worst nightmare. 

overall, i'm VERY pleased with the at home gel mani. it stinks that you have to buy a whole kit just for the  activator, but for the price i think it's still worth it because a professionally done gel mani will run you up to three times the cost of the kit. and, there is a coupon inside the kit for $2 off of your next purchase, so it's like a win-win in my book. the next time i give myself a gel mani, i will try using the polish that came with the kit. look for that in a future link up of the nail files.

oh, and if you want detailed instructions about the mani, please check out the blog post that kate put together over at the small things blog.

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Blogger jennie said...

You're SO BRAVE! Haha. Looks like the wear was pretty good, though. I'm interested to see how it'll work with the polish from the kit!

Jan 13, 2012, 8:47:00 AM  
Blogger Kasey said...

I love that! I didn't know you could buy a gel kit. I have heard so many good things about it, I might have to try it sometime!

Jan 13, 2012, 9:32:00 AM  
Blogger Cami said...

NICE!! I'm so happy about this post. lol.
Do you need the UV light too?? Or this is one without it?? I want to try it out!

<3-Cami from First Day of My Life

Jan 13, 2012, 9:44:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is awesome! I had no idea you could buy a gel kit! I might honestly look into this.

Jan 13, 2012, 10:01:00 AM  
Blogger Jules said...

I've seen this at CVS and I think you've sold me. Your nails looks darn good after a week. I would want to try it with the color that comes in the kit, since it looks like a nice and natural pink.

Jan 13, 2012, 11:23:00 AM  
Blogger Sarah @ Simply Sarah said...

Those look great! You are so brave for trying this!

PS Be sure to check out my blog giveaway:

Jan 13, 2012, 11:33:00 AM  
Blogger Leanna Vera said...

I've been thinking about trying a gel manicure for a while you have to soak your nails to get the at home version off as well?

Jan 13, 2012, 1:04:00 PM  
Blogger tara said...

Um. Hi. That is awesome!!!!

Jan 13, 2012, 1:18:00 PM  
Blogger Crystal said...

Wow that is impressive! Might have to give that a try, always looking for ways to KEEP THE POLISH ON!

Jan 13, 2012, 1:38:00 PM  
Blogger Sweet Tea In Sicily said...

Wow! They still look great!! Thanks for the tips :)


Jan 13, 2012, 6:29:00 PM  
Blogger Alyssa said...

Those look fabulous!! It definitely sounds worth it to try that!

Jan 13, 2012, 7:54:00 PM  
Blogger Stesha said...

wish i could do my own nails!!! Then I wouldnt have to pay so much, tooooo bad i do not have a steady hand at all :(

love the blog.

Classic & Bubbly

Jan 14, 2012, 12:16:00 PM  
Blogger Vy Barto said...

Ok, I have to go out and do this! I just spent a lot (too much) for my last gel mani!!!

Jan 16, 2012, 1:25:00 AM  
Blogger undomestic chica said...

Oh my goodness, I'm going to have to try this! I hate spending time on my nails only to have them chip two days later.

Jan 16, 2012, 1:55:00 PM  

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