Nail Polish That Doesn't Chip, Ever: A Review

As part of my Little-To-No Jewelry Policy of Summer 2010 (it's going to be too hot to have anything non-essential touching my skin, I can already tell), I've started paying a lot more attention to my nails. But as part of my overarching No-Nonsense Policy of Summer 2010, I don't really want to waste 90 minutes every week getting manicures or doing my own nails.

And, in all honesty, it might be more frequent than that. Summer is a messy time of year, as I was reminded during a recent trip to the beach. One barefoot walk down a long stretch of sand wreaked havoc on my brand-new pedicure, and I returned to my towel missing nail polish on two toes. Not a tragedy, I know, but it was a waste of money.

Which is partly what led me Creative Nail Design (CND)'s Shellac manicure, which boasts a staying power of 14 days.

You can't do this at home: the polish must be applied by a professional given all the special UV equipment (here's a lists of the salons that do Shellac). So as long as I was sitting with a "nail technician," as they're called in CND parlance, I decided to get a little fancy and do a moon manicure (some call it the half-moon), which was de rigeur for women of the 1930s and 40s. Back then, they were applied with red polish, leaving the moon at the base of the nail white. I went a little more modern (more Summer 2010?), opting for a light pink moon with red polish.

Here I am right after the event, looking pretty satisfied with the results:

So I put the manicure to the test by just living my life: doing dishes, rustling around in my bag for keys, typing incessantly on my keyboard, doing laundry...basically just using my hands like a normal person. It was so liberating! And it worked. There was nary a chip to be found when I went back to the salon to get it removed about 18 days later. The polish had started to grow out with my nails and peel a little at the edges, but chip it did not.

Here's the manicure right before it got removed (which also needs to be done by a professional):

So I got another Shellac manicure (this time in Iced Cappuccino, for anyone interested). Here in New York it costs $41.80, but getting your life back is priceless.

Shellac's main flaw, as I noticed during the aforementioned trip to the beach, is that it peels at the edges a lot faster when it's been exposed to the hot sun. But there are worse crimes. The Shellac manicure is ideal for anyone who uses their hands. I'm into it.