Lets face it who doesn't want pretty nails and I for one have always been a fan of pretty nails. A couple of times a year I will get Gel Nails but in general I like to keep my nails long and well groomed. I enjoy doing my nails and think that there is not much sense in paying a salon 60-100 euro when I can use my own creativity and do it myself. I always get asked are my nails real and 9 times out of ten I’m proud to say they are.
However recently I spotted the Gel Nails at Home kit for essence and decided I would try to step it up a gear. I had never done gel nails before and was intrigued about the product. Why not sure? I bought LED Lamp, the Primer, the cleanser, the peel off gel base and the clear gel top coat. Finally I decided to treat myself to a new essence polish as well. I choose a sparkly blue polish called – It’s raining men. I decided to go with the clear gel top coat so that it gave me the freedom to wear whatever colour I wanted underneath.
If you want to find more about the products and how I used them just keep reading. I will include the prices I paid for each item but these can vary from store to store. I purchased mine in Pennys/Primark.
LED Lamp - €24.99
Small and compact but fits all five nails at once. Connects to the wall with a plug, has and on/off switch on the back and has a small purple button on the top of the device to turn it on. The light lasts 60 seconds at a time. It claims on the front – high-shine gel look, lasts up to 2 weeks.
Primer - €3.99
This primer is recommended to be applied before all the other products to protect the nails. It does come with a warning that it does contain alcohol so it is slightly flammable. I do think a base coat would probably do the same job but this is my first time trying this out so I may be wrong.
Peel off gel base - €3.99
Next I applied this product. I think it’s a very good idea to have a peel off base as personally believe the worst part of having a gel manicure is the process of taking it off. I am definitely a fan of any product that makes it easier.
This product cleans the nail of any sticky residue that is left over.
Clear Gel Top Coat - €3.99
This is the top coat that when cured is rock hard and enables to help your manicure to last up to 2 weeks.
Gel Nail at Home Process
How I applied the products
- I applied the primer to my nails
- I applied a thick layer of the peel off base coat keeping it at even as possible
- I cured my nails under the lamp for 10 seconds
- I used the cleanser to wipe off any sticky residue
- I applied two layers of Essence Nail Varnish – It’s Raining Men and waited for them to completely dry before moving onto the next step.
- I applied the clear gel top coat again a thick enough layer but keeping it as even as possible
- I cured it under the lamp. This time I left it under for 60 seconds. Im not sure if it was too much but I just wanted to make sure it had completely dry.
- Finally I used that cleanser again to wipe away any lasting residue and it was finished!
After Care & Removal
I found that it lives up to its claim, It really does last a long time without chipping. I put cuticle oil on after each time i do a manicure just to finish it off. I found removal very easy. They do just peal off. I found the key is application. It depends to how well you apply the products on how long it lasts and how easy it is to remove.
I found with this product that it depends on the colour nail varnish you use on how shiny it actually it. when i used the nail varnish - Essence - Berry Now! i found it muted the shine and made the colour darker then what it actually is. This is a shame as Berry Now! is a beautiful Raspberry colour. I think its because the clear gel top coat is actually tinted yellow so I think this has a slight effect on the colour of nail varnish you choose.
I really like this product (Combo of Products) I think it was a great Idea for Essence to release these products. It does do exactly what it promises to do but may have a slight effect of colour change on certain nail varnishes. Essence have also released other types of top coats (Special Effects, French Manicure) so I will be interested to try them. Overall Impressed with the product!!