The first time I got acrylic nails I was a debutante in the Minneapolis-St. Paul cotillion. I wanted to go-over-and above and get a french manicure to match my over-and-above white ballroom gown. Excitedly, I sat in the salon, and watched as my cuticles were soaked, massaged and trimmed. After my nails were dry, the strangest thing happened. The nail tech began drilling and filing away at my nail bed. I thought by the time she was done there would be nothing left. After she what just about looked like destroyed my nails, she started applying the acrylic nails, painted them, and sent me on my way. Well, of course, a few weeks later I was sick of them and how horrible they looked once they started to grow out. Anxious to get them off, I tried nail polish remover and learned that I needed acetone remover and at least half an hour! I clipped, filled and soaked. And then soaked, and soaked some more. After I’d soaked off all the glue, I saw the disgusting looking nail bed that lay underneath. Two weeks of wearing fake nails had left me with two hands of destroyed nails that would take months to grow back. That was my last experience with acrylic.
As a result of that traumatic, nail-ruining acrylic lesson, I don’t use gel, acrylic, shellac, or anything. Just my regular ole nails. Purple, grey and dark green. Those are the nail polish colors I’m rotating through this season. In fact, I’ve changed my polish color three times in the last two weeks. I can’t stand eying the chipped lacquer, so I grab my bottle of remover and color swap immediately. The cost savings associated with doing it yourself are wonderful. You could probably get about thirty applications from one bottle, and if you substitute the cost of an average manicure at the salon, you could save $900 with just one bottle.
But what about all the colors the nail salon offers? How could you possibly replace their vast color variety? Well, I usually gravitate to a family of a few colors. Depending on the season, I may like to wear an existing favorite of mine a little lighter or darker, so I mix own colors. I use a tiny plastic funnel and mix to my heart’s content. I’m able to create the exact color I want. I can match my nails to my outfit exactly, or create a never-seen before shade that the salons don’t yet carry.