What is a Gel Or Shellac Manicure?
Shellac nail polish dries instantly under an LED lamp, eliminating the lengthy drying times associated with traditional nail polish. Generally speaking, shellac applications include an initial base coat layer, followed by several polish layers and finishing up with an opaque topcoat to complete its curing process.
What is it?
Shellac manicures are a hybrid between gel and traditional polish that lasts up to 14 days, created by CND using their own patented formula for seamless coverage without the long curing time required with UV lights at home.
Shellac manicures deliver a professional, long-term polish without major nail damage, according to nail art experts we consulted. Shellac should only cause major issues if applied or removed improperly by trained technicians; otherwise it will do nothing more than damage the nails over time.
However, removal can be time-consuming and require acetone-based remover. Furthermore, like any product applied directly to nails, gel has the potential of damaging natural nails during curing; this could result in peeling or brittleness; thus it’s essential to use cuticle oil and hand cream after having a gel manicure done. It should also be noted that Gel may last several weeks longer than Shellac while being more difficult to apply at home.
How is it applied?
As for the application process, Seney points out that it is very similar to getting gel polish done; your nail artist will start by cleansing your nails before applying a base coat, two color layers, and topcoat before curing under an LED light to ensure long-term shine and no dry time required for each layer.
CND founder Jan Arnold credits shellac’s beauty to its holistic design: all layers work together seamlessly for 14 days of flawless wear while protecting natural nail health. Arnold recommends that clients seek out trained and certified CND Shellac nail professionals as these will have more insight into applying and removing shellac polish without harming the nails.
Shellac differs from gel in that it soaks off easier with acetone, making removal much simpler for nail technicians to accomplish without damaging nails or cuticles.
What are the benefits?
Shellac nails are long-wearing, attractive and do not cause major damage to the nail plate when properly applied and removed. Furthermore, shellac provides an opportunity to add color without the worry of chipping or peeling off over time.
Shellac manicures should be treated as not being constructed of regular nail polish, but rather from CND gel polish – meaning they may last longer but not be as durable compared to alternatives such as dip powder or bio-sculpture.
Shellac manicures may cause your nails damage over time; this damage is generally exacerbated by the removal process and your lack of caution in doing it yourself at home. Otherwise, Shellac is an amazing way to treat yourself to an indulgent manicure that leaves your hands looking polished and feeling luxurious!
What are the drawbacks?
Shellac and gel polishes have quickly become extremely popular due to their longer wear time than traditional nail polish, quick dry time, and quicker dry times. Unfortunately, however, there may be health risks associated with using such products.
Shellac manicures pose several drawbacks that should be taken into consideration, most importantly their inability to let the nails breathe underneath the coating, leading to nail fungus and weak, brittle nails. Furthermore, if done incorrectly it could damage them further.
Professional nail technicians apply and remove nail polish safely and correctly, with no health risks to worry about. However, using acetone alone to remove Shellac manicures at home could cause the loss of thin layers of keratin which could weaken and damage nails over time.
For ease, always have a nail technician apply or remove Shellac for you. They’ll use an isolation wrap around each nail, before soaking them in stronger acetone solution to ensure a quick removal process, without scraping. CND designed their system just that way!