Chances are you’ve heard of Shellac and Gelish; both are the biggest names in regards to soak-off gel nail polishes*. If the two, I tend to prefer Gelish simply because their range of colours can’t be beat. Now, however, there’s a new gel mani on the block nsi’s POLISH pro, exclusive to nationwide nail chain Dream Nails.
What really sets POLISH pro apart, however, is that it’s the most cost-effective of the lot. While the salons like Sorbet are offering Gelish manis for around R190 or more, POLISH pro is only R120!
Now get a look at my gorgeous red mani:
Initially, I was a bit sceptical about POLISH pro in that I wasn’t sure it as good a quality as Gelish. My red colour shrank a tad after it was cured so it looked like I had about a day’s worth of re-growth near my cuticles. Still, I’ve spoken to other girls who say that many dark colours tend to shrink under the lamp so the issue isn’t unique to POLISH pro. Also, you’ve got to realise we’re talking about a millimetre of shrinkage here… you’d have to be crazy pedantic to let that piss you off.
After my mani was done, the top coat had an ever so slightly ‘filmy’ look that prevented it from looking as shiny as my red Gelish toes. This caused me to tweet that I had ‘mixed feelings’ about it. Fortunately, this disappeared within a few hours and now my mani and pedi are both on par in regards to gleamage!
When it comes to getting a new gel polish I’ll almost certainly opt for POLISH pro as a R70 plus saving isn’t to be sniffed at.
Another bonus? When your polish starts growing out and you want to try and ‘fill the gap’ as opposed to soak it off, you can buy a mini inTouch nail enamel from the salon.
Their colours are exact matches the POLISH pro shades and only cost R32 a pop!
*Don’t know what soak-off gel polishes are? Essentially you slick ‘em on and then get them cured under a lamp. Depending on the lamp used, this can take 15 seconds to 2 minutes. Once it’s cured, you’re good to go in that your mani is now completely rock hard. Seriously. You can run your fingers through your hair or fumble around in your bag for your wallet and it won’t smudge or budge! Your super shiny new mani should last a good ten or more days and you choose to grow it out (so gross, don’t do it girls!) or remove it with an acetone soak off. Many salons offer these soak offs for around R50 or so but I prefer to do my own at home, simply leaving my finger tips in a tea cup of extra-strength nail polish remover for a good twenty minutes before gently scraping it off.
My POLISH pro mani started chipping after seven days. Both thumb nails and a pointer finger are now half off. This isn’t great, but I’m not too upset about it considering the price. Clearly POLISH pro isn’t as hardy as Gelish or Shellac but I’ll continue to get it when my wallet’s in dire straits and will just make a point of treating it a little more delicately than I would the other gel-type manis. No more cracking open Coke Lite tins for me…