Thursday, June 27, 2013

Vinylux Review #2

My first Vinylux review gets a lot of hits.  My first review wasn't exactly 100% fair and I stated that up front.  I did use it on top of Gel Polish and that's not what it was intended for.  But I did put it head to head against a regular polish and everything I stated was fact.  For everyone who has just found this blog - I am a Certified Nail Technician so my technique and application is professional.

This is the last shot I'm giving Vinylux.  I wasn't all that impressed in my original review.  I tested it out first on my mother and it chipped within the first three days.  I also tried it on a Client who chipped it in less than 24 hours!

I am a Gel-Polish-Aholic.  I have been wearing Gel Polish almost exclusively for probably 2 years now.  My nails are completely healthy and not stained.  This photo was taken after a proper PEP (dry manicure), cuticles removed and Scrub Fresh applied.

One very important thing to note about Vinylux is that it's a retail product being sold to regular consumers as well as professionals.  Let's get real here - a normal consumer is NOT going to do a proper PEP as directed by CND complete with Scrub Fresh.  Given the previous experiences I've had with Vinylux so far - I do not recommend this product for a normal consumer.  If a consumer is well informed and uses this polish exactly as directed they will need to purchase Scrub Fresh, cuticle remover and a cuticle pusher.

I had picked up some new Vinylux colours earlier this week and swatched them beside the first 3 colours I bought. I decided that my original 3 swatches looked like they need another coat of polish and holy crap look what happened!

There was never any top coat applied to my swatches.  This was just an additional coat of polish about 3 weeks after the original coat!  WTF is all I have to say about that!

So I followed CND's instructions exactly for Vinylux application with the preparation, two coats of colour, no base, and the Weekly Top Coat.  This colour is Dark Lava.  This was before I applied my cuticle oil.  I use CND's Solar Oil as well.

This photo is after almost 48 hours of wear.  Plenty of tip wear and you can see some chips just starting to form at the sides of my pointer and pinky.  Again, the Top Coat has dulled substantially.

And a day later at 72 hours it has become a full chip at the top corner of my pointer.  My nails still looked okay overall but I took it off because it had chipped in 2 places and I felt like my nails were too vulnerable.  I've been wearing Gel Polish for so long that I needed that extra reinforcement or I was afraid they would break.

And here they are after removal.  No staining - it's just the lamp I'm using that gives them a bit of yellow tinge.

So all in all, it's not a terrible product.  I find it was more chip resistant than normal polish but I won't be using it on myself again.  I think for the price it's a decent product.  It is slightly better than a normal polish and I love not using a basecoat.  But for me, this product is not what it claims to be.  The Top Coat is not shiny enough for starters.  They should definitely change that Weekly Top Coat bottle to read - Lasts 'UP TO' 7 days without chipping.


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Foil Play

So I had an order of nail art come in from China and decided to try out nail foils for the first time.

The glue that came with the foils was total crap so my only option is to use it on Gel Polish.  So here I used 2 coats of Shellac Azure Wish and pressed blue holographic foil into the big toes.  The great thing about this is the Gel Polish doesn't wrinkle the foil like regular top coats do.

I painted her hands in matching Azure Wish in Vinylux with a konad accent.  The verdict on this Vinylux manicure?  It chipped in less than 24 hours!!!  I'm a little bit pissed off at the moment because I've purchased about 10 Vinylux polishes now and they are not living up to the hype.  I'm giving them one more shot - I removed my Shellac and painted my own natural nails with Vinylux last night so there will be a second review coming soon.

I've seen a lot of people bitching about why people are comparing Vinylux to Shellac.  Well besides the fact that it's also made by CND and they have several matching colours...

They claim it lasts 7 days without chips.  They claim Shellac lasts 14 days without chips.  The service (for most places) costs about an additional $10 for Shellac which lasts twice as long.  If Vinylux doesn't last the full 7 days where is the value in that?

Shellac/Gel Polish was a pretty big breakthrough in the nail industry.  Yes there are a cons to it (like removal) and it doesn't work for everyone but for those who use it correctly and take the proper care it is an amazing product.  Vinylux was launched with somewhat similar claims but much less cons than Shellac.

Most of my Clients have Gel Polish and they love it.  If they want to maintain it, it costs them $$ to come in and have me remove and repaint them every 2-3 weeks.  You would think that Vinylux would be a cheaper option for them if they wanted to take a 'break' from Gel Polish every so often, but in fact it's more expensive for them - especially if it chips within the first couple of days. (FYI, your nails don't NEED to take a break from Gels/Acrylics/Whatever - nails don't breathe, it's a myth, look it up cuz I'm too lazy to google it for you)

The Vinylux shine is something I had a major problem with.  Yes Shellac has an ultra high gloss long lasting shine but that's what I'm used to.  Seche Vite doesn't even compare to Shellac but then from my experience so far, Vinylux doesn't even compare to Seche Vite.

What it boils down to is that I always recommend Gel Polish to my Clients.  For those few that can't wear it, Vinylux is supposed to be the next best thing...but is it?


Thursday, June 20, 2013

A little fun

So I broke both my thumbnails last week.  But my Gelish was still perfect on the rest of my nails so I decided to remove it on my thumbs only.  Only in 2013 could I get away with a manicure like this:

I used regular polish on my thumbs - China Glaze Blonde Bombshell.  I stamped my middle finger because I figured if I was going for mismatched I may as well go all out.  FYI this is at 13 days of my Gelish Sweet Morning Dew manicure.  As always, awesome wear with Gel Polish.

So my 'fun' client came back, saw the stamping on my nails and just had to have it on her own.  We did one coat of OPI Alpine Snow and 2 coats of IBD Just Gel in Starburst.  Bright fluorescent pink, much like the China Glaze Heat Index I wore a couple of weeks ago.

I also had another client come in for 'gel polish fingers and toes' and we used 3 coats of OPI Pedal Faster Suzi on her fingers and Gelish Holiday Party Blues on her toes with some silver stars stamped on them.

I'm getting a lot of people doing the 'gel polish fingers and toes' right now.  It must just be the time of year.  It's great though because I can offer a package deal for it and it only takes an extra half hour to add the toe service.  I calculated what it would take to make enough money to match my day job - I would need to do 8 Gel manicures per day (or 4 fingers + toes).  As much as I love doing nails, I don't think I could sit and do 8 manicures, 5 days a week.  My setup right now for toes also involves me sitting on the floor and it's murder on my back.  I need to look at some options for that.  Anyways I'm pretty content to do about 2 clients per week on top of my regular day job.  Now if only I didn't run out and spend that money on more gel polish....


Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Sick of neon yet?

I think I'm officially sick of neon after this manicure...even though it was my favorite of all of them.

This is 3 coats of Gelish Sweet Morning Dew from the Love in Bloom spring collection.  I scrubbed some iridescent glitter into the accent nail.  The colour is definitely more peachy in real life.  Think like cantelope colour but in neon.

I did have some application issues with this polish.  It was extremely streaky and a bit on the thick side.  I don't typically do 3 coats of solid colour but you can't get away with 2 with this polish.  Something strange I noticed lately when wearing these bright pink and orange polishes - people keep asking me if my nails are real!?  I wonder why that is....


Thursday, June 13, 2013

For the attention whores...

This is 4 coats of China Glaze Heat Index on 2 coats of OPI Gelcolour in Alpine Snow.

While wearing this polish I didn't get the typical 'oh I like your nails', I got 'holy shit wtf is on your nails?' or 'oh my god I saw that from 2 blocks away!'  So if you want to draw lots of attention to yourself then this is the polish for you.  As for me, I won't be wearing it again and what the hell was I thinking anyways?


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Before and after - short extensions

This Client wanted some nice nails for a wedding and typically does gel polish but had a few nasty breaks, so I suggested some short gel extensions.

I used white french tips, which I don't typically use.  Some of her nails were so short that the tip needed to be placed further down the nail, but in the end didn't turn out too badly. 

I added a little konad flower from the Pro Plate 1.  She likes a more rounded nail shape but I'm not a fan.


Thursday, June 6, 2013

Fluorescent fail, marble win

2 coats of OPI Gelcolor in Alpine Snow.  FYI, this polish sucks for french manicures but it's fine otherwise and great for mixing into dark Gelcolors to soften them.  The only good white gel polish I've found for doing french manicures is Shellac Cream Puff - one coat and no shrink back.

So I've gotten better at water marbling HOWEVER....I had intended this to be a fluorescent water marble which is why I started with the white gel base.  I used Bille Electric Yellow, China Glaze Shell-o and China Glaze Heat Index.  Unfortunately the colours didn't come out as bright as I'd hoped.

My thumb turned out the best.  I called this my pink lemonade mani.  Didn't keep it on long since the colours are just not me.  Who would have thought when I started this blog that I would wear something like this?


Monday, June 3, 2013

Summer Fun

I love when I get a client who wants something fun rather than just neutral, plain or french like most people want.

This is Gelish Sweet Morning Dew from the Love in Bloom collection with an accent nail in Gelish Mint of Spring.  I found Sweet Morning Dew was very streaky and needed 3 coats but the colours look great on her tan skin tone. 

She tried out a little konad stamp for the first time and loved it.  This came from the konad pro plate 1 - number thirty-something...too lazy to look it up.

Then I did her toes in Gelish Mint of Spring to match her accent nails.  I scrubbed in some clear iridescent glitter on her big toes.

And here it is all together.  Definitely a fun summer look.  I think this is my favorite 'toe look' so far.  I've even done this exact pedi twice now.  The sparkle is amazing outdoors.