As always, here is the schedule of events if you would like to follow along or participate.
Remember the rules:
- The polish you use must be at least a year old.
- If you haven't been a polishaholic for that long, you can use the oldest polishes you have.
- The polish should be previously used, but if you're stuck, you can use a polish from your untrieds stack.
- You can use more than one polish as long as it fits the rules.
Tonight, I decided that I'd give nail art using soak off gels a shot. My nails were breaking a bit, and I wanted to use the gels to help get a little better support while they grow out. It was a pretty time intensive process that I'll describe below.
The polishes I used were all from Gelish that I purchased at Sally's at the end of 2011 and early 2012. I used Shake it Til You Samba, You're So Sweet You're Giving me a Toothache, and Izzy Wizzy Let's Get Busy.
First, I applied one thick coat of Samba and cured it. Next, I applied the vinyls to the freshly cured gel. If you do your own SOGs, then you know that the color layers stay slick and tacky untl you've applied the topcoat. That being said, it was a giant pain in the butt to get the decals to stick.
After the decals were in place, I topped the mani off with So Sweet. Unfortunately, because the decals wouldn't stay put, the watery gel just seeped right underneath. I flash cured each finger for 10 seconds to keep the gel from sliding around, which helped in the spots where the decals were sufficiently affixed to my nail.
After one coat of So Sweet, I took off the decals to assess the outcome. As I suspected, bits of So Sweet seeped underneath and cured a bit funky. I used a bit of acetone and my cuticle nippers to fix the edges a bit and to cut down any parts that were sticking up.
After that first coat, I decided to just free hand the remaining two coats of So Sweet and cleanup a bit as I went along. I still flash cured it after each finger to ensure that it wouldn't slide around while I finished up my hand.
After I finished the art, I topped it all off with Izzy Wizzy and topcoat, cleaned it up, and it was ready to go!
I wasn't that pleased with the outcome after I first finished. For some reason, it looked weird to me. Maybe because it reminds me of an Easter egg. Or maybe it was because my skin was so ridiculously dry after using all of that alcohol and acetone to dehydrate and cleanse my nails.
Either way, I decided not to do the same thing with my left hand. Instead, I attempted a simple diagonal tape mani. However, I had the same issue with it as I did with the chevrons. The tape wouldn't stay down, and I had a lot of seepage underneath the tape. I did my cleanup and went to bed.
When I woke up this morning, I was much more pleased with the outcome. In fact, I'm actually happy with it and hope it lasts for a week or so before bubbling and lifting. I tried a few things differently this time by using acetone instead of trying to do a dry cleanup between layers. We'll see how that effects the wear time.
After all of that, though, I want to make perfectly clear that the Nail Vinyls work AMAZINGLY WELL on regular polish or completed SOGs. It's just the weirdness of gels in between curing and before finishing the full mani that caused my issues. However, my nail art noobishness really shows here because I should've used alcohol to remove the tacky layer before trying to add the decals. That was what was recommended to me today by the super SOG expert Chickettes for the future, so I'm going to try that next time for sure. Anyway, I really like the vinyls and cannot wait to try out more!
So, what do you think of my mani? Do you do your own SOGs?