Phew! A little busy with a lot of travel and not a lot of "me" time built into the schedule. I was the maid of honor in the wedding and the bride had requested that our fingers be done in a french tip. Back in September I went on an acrylic adventure that made my nails very weak (but much longer than they were!), and two of my nails had problem areas on the tip where regular nail polish would not adhere for any length of time before chipping.
I decided to give CND's Shellac a try. I'd heard Shellac was perfect for vacations or other periods of time where you just can't change your polish as often as you'd like. I went to a local salon which charged me $55 to have the procedure done; the normal price was $40 but since I wanted french tips the price was increased by $15. That was more than I was expecting to spend but I didn't have much time to back out of the procedure when I found out the cost (oops) since I was getting my nails done Wednesday afternoon.
These were my nails on Wednesday, day zero of my Shellac manicure.
Short, yes. If you enlarge them you may notice that the nail tech got a piece of lint stuck under the polish on two of my nails. That drove me a bit crazy so I tried not to look too closely at them.
My nails lasted like this for five days and then the polish chipped on one of my weak nails. Since I was in North Carolina at the time I didn't get a photo of my nails till I got back home. Here's what they looked like on day eight.
A significant amount of growth had occurred and my chipped nail was looking a little rough. I do think the chip blended in because of the french style. This also helped to camouflage some of the growth. To repair the chipped nail I applied base coat, color, and the Seche Vite directly over the Shellac but only overlapping a small amount. This wasn't ideal at all. The surface wasn't smooth where the Seche Vite overlapped and it eventually chipped again on day ten so I decided to take everything off.
I was a little worried about removal because there are special wraps that you apply to the Shellac but I decided to give it a go with the simple foil method.
I wrapped aluminum foil around a cotton ball soaked with acetone pressed to my nail (left photo below) which softened the Shellac up a lot. I then just had to use a wood stick to gently scrape away the Shellac gel in order to reveal my natural nail underneath (right photo below).
Would I ever get shellac again? It depends. For a vacation or other time period where I just can be bothered to mess with my nails like I typically do then I think so. But for a one-day or weekend event I probably would not, a chip-resistant polish would do for those events. I do think if I used a solid color the outgrowth would really bother me but as long as I didn't push back my cuticles it probably wouldn't be so bad.