this product is terrible. The polish chip by the next day and within a few days every nail chipped polish does not come off easily even with the polish pads. I soaked them n used all the pads and iI ended up having to file some of the color off. I would never buy this product again. Waste of time n money. I returned it.
Bought this at grocery outlet for a decent price. Bought two, one in red for my mom and the other in pink. Wow do these suck. The smell of the activator is like as if I'm pouring nail glue all over them. The lasting power is beyond poor. They chipped within the first two hours! After that they cracked so my nails look like a broken window. Besides cracking they began having discoloration. It's like the color began disappearing and began being patchy. Absolutely a horrible purchase. Do not buy!
Awful, awful, awful product. I have tried it twice now, just in case the first time was a fluke.
The Good: It dries fast. Really fast.
The Bad: Everything else. Chips within 12 hours; loses shine within 24 hours; DO NOT GET ON SKIN it is very difficult to remove. Smells like super glue - very strong, very potent. Bottles are tiny and hard to maneuver - fall over easily. Brushes are tiny and hard to use neatly.
Need I go on? I definitely will not buy this again.
Would not waste my money again as they product did not deliver what it advertised. Too many steps, needs more coats, chips within 2 days.
Simply terrible. The brushes are stringy and don't cover well, the polish is streaky, and it's hell to remove. I'd have been better off buying one of the .99 nail polish minis at Sally and painting my nails with that.
Bought this product on sale for 9.99 (regular retail is 10.99) simply out of curiosity. I'm a die hard OPI fan and have natural nails...no acrylics, etc. I'd heard about the gel craze and thought this might be a good way to try it out and see if I could add some strength to my weak, peeling nails (which have been that way all my life). Also thought that because of the gel, the manicure might be less likely to chip.
Applying the product is very simple. It comes with 3 bottles (activator, color, and cleaner). The activator is clearly the gel portion, and it goes on smoothly although it smells like nail glue and sticks to your skin much like nail glue would, so be very careful to NOT get it on your skin or cuticle. After the activator comes the color, which is nothing like any other polish I've used. It sort of spreads into the activator...make one swoop down the center of your nail and it bleeds into the activator. Another coat of activator, and another coat of color, and you're done. Couldn't be simpler, and it really does dry in 5 minutes like it says. MUCH faster than the 30 minutes I normally allow myself for a mani (base, ridge filler, 2 coats of color and a top coat).
But the results were mediocre. The gel should be self-leveling...but I still had ridges. The color was beautiful, but it chipped the 1st day. And taking it off was a real chore. Had to use the acetone/foil method to remove the product after 2 days, which was hell on my nails. Really disappointed that my mani didn't last longer, and that it took me forever to get the product off. Will not use again or repurchase. Sticking to my OPI...but it might be good for folks who just can't sit still long enough for 5 coats of standard polish to dry and still want a professionally manicured look.
OK, it's been a long time since I wrote a product review, but I really had to for this one. I shelled out $11.99 at Ulta for this in "Dahlia", which is a really deep dark vampy purple. Kinda like OPI's Lincoln Park At Midnight. I was intrigued that this doesn't require a UV light for curing, and I always wish my polish lasted longer than a few days. Chips bother me, but I type a lot at work, so even using Seche Vite as a topcoat doesn't help too much.
Anyway, in the little box supposedly has everything you need - activating stuff, the polish, and the remover/cleaner thing. First, you paint your nails with the activator solution. Then you paint the polish on top. And repeat with activator and a second coat of color. Like the other reviewer said, you need to be relatively comfortable already in painting your own nails because this stuff is not forgiving at ALL! You also need to clean the polish brush after you've applied the color every 5 nails. For Dahlia, that meant that cleaning the color off even the first time made the little bottle of acetone remover cleaner thingy turn the same deep purple shade as the polish.
So, when you paint the color on the activator, the polish does this weird thing and kinda spreads when it mixes with the activator. Which is fine, cuz eventually yes, with two coats you even out all the streaks.
They were "dry" in 5 minutes, but also as the other reviewer wrote, still tacky. It irritated the heck out of me. While there were no dents, the tackiness did pick up some other stuff - like after my shirt rubbed on the nail, it would get kinda dull because there was a film of some kind stuck to the tackiness... does that make sense?
I painted the color on Monday, and by yesterday they had already started to chip... which for me is about the same wear I get for regular polish + Seche. So tonight I came home after picking up the remover pads from Ulta. REMOVAL. IS. A. PAIN. IN. THE. A$$. According to The Beauty Brains, (http://thebeautybrains.com/2011/10/11/how-does-gel-perfect-create-a-glossy-gel-coat/) apparently the technology of this UV-light free gel polish is like superglue. So, you are painting your nails with superglue, then painting color on top of them. So you can imagine the pain you need to go through in order to remove said colored superglue.
The remover pads were not very helpful. If I had pure acetone and felt around my house, I would have used those instead. I think the soaking of felt plus foil would have worked better in this case. It took me a really long time to remove the polish with the remover pads... and I still had some weird super glue like film on top of my nails and in the sides. I resorted to kind of scraping some of the residue off, and yeah, it totally flaked off like superglue. My nails were pretty stained from the dark color and like I said, it was a real pain getting all that crap off even with their remover pads.
So... proceed with caution. I personally probably won't buy this product again. Though I have enough for a few more applications, just thinking about the removal process makes me tired (took me about an hour and I still couldn't get all the bits of color and superglue off!) I think I'll just stick to regular polish and Seche, thanks.
Overall score: meh.
UV-less gel nails. No UV light needed. I purchased Peony which is a shimmering red
Price I believe was approx $12. The kit includes activator, color and cleaner. There was a coupon at the store so I picked it up for a couple of dollars off.
I belive there is only enough product for three manicures which isn't much but because you don't need the light, I don't mind.
This product is for someone who is fairly comfortable painting their own nails with very little clean up around the cuticle area. This isn't super forgiving.
First you paint on the activator which smells just like nail glue (wondering if it is or not) and do one full hand. Then paint on color. Color sort of spreads or bleeds over the activator but you can even it all out with a couple of strokes of the brush. Finish hand and do the other. A second coat is required for full coverage. It also will help clean up any boo-boos.
The cleaner is used after 5 fingers to clean the brush of the color part. Nails should be dry enough to put a freshly pedicured foot back into a shoe in 5 minutes. I found that after 5 minutes my nails were dry but felt gummy? tacky? not sure how to describe. It has only been 27 minutes since I finished my mani and I am typing all this out with no dents in the polish.
Final verdict: This is my first try with a gel polish. I have been intriged by Gelish and the such and wanted to give them a try but didn't want to shell out the dough for a new "system". The bottles in the kit are tiny but I didn't have any problems holding on to them or working with them. I will report back on how long shine lasted and wear time and removal. Depending on the wear, these might be good for needing a lasting mani for a vacation but I am not about to toss out my entire stash of polish just for super quick dry time. If you need super fast dry time, this delivers.
(I also bought the remover pads. FYI)
I wore this for 5 days and had to take it off because of chipping. The reason for the chipping was from me filing down my nails. I think if I didn't file, which I do all the time with regular polish, it would have lasted longer. Taking it off was not fun. I really didn't like the special remover pads at all. I did the tin foil method instead. I had a good amount of staining as well. I still contend that this would be great for a vacation/away from my mani supplies type of mani.