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To not understand the language of manicures?!

(20 Posts)
ilovelamp2 Sun 02-Aug-15 09:23:06

Not sure how his has happened but I am almost 40 and have never had my nails done at a salon! I am trying to book an appointment but I am totally bamboozled by the terminology ... Can anyone help me with these questions?!

What is the difference between gel polish and gel nails?
Are shellac/Jessica nails the same as gel nails?
Can you get toes done as well as fingers?
How long will it last?
How do you get em off?
I might get a spray tan - do I need to get nails done first or afterwards?

I want them to last for our two week holiday but we fly on a Wednesday and I am noticing that a lot of salons aren't open Sunday, Monday or Tuesday.

Please tell me what I need to ask for! Had no idea it was so complicated!

londonrach Sun 02-Aug-15 09:26:21

Little bit of advice. Just make sure they use a new brush for you or take your own polish in (better still as you can choose the perfect colour for you). Getting alot of patients coming in with fungal nails following a pedicure.

DisappointedOne Sun 02-Aug-15 09:28:06

Go for shellac and get it the Saturday before you go if you can't find anywhere open on a Tuesday. Well applied shellac should last at least 2 weeks, but worth trying to get hold of a nail varnish in the same colour to take in case of chips. If you want your nails to stay in good shape, get them removed properly wherever you have them done (or buy some pure acetone and do it yourself at home).

The toe version is called a pedicure, by the way.

Spartans Sun 02-Aug-15 09:28:07

Do you want extensions (made longer) or just nail polish that lasts?

GenevaMaybe Sun 02-Aug-15 09:28:24

Gel nails is where they file your own nail down and apply layers of gel to give you the illusion of longer nails. This is a good option if you bite your nails or want a talon look.

Gel polish is like normal nail varnish that they apply and bake set under a UV lamp. It lasts up to 3 weeks but looks just like shiny nail varnish. It will not add any length to your nails.

You can have gel varnish applied to your toes if you want a very long-lasting pedicure e.g. Up to a month.

I get gel varnish on my hands and toes regularly. There are different brands but they are all basically the same, including shellac, gellish, geleration, OPI gel and Jessica gel.

Do not pick or chew either gel nails or gel varnish off as you will totally fuck up your nails. You need to go back to the salon and have it properly soaked off.

DisappointedOne Sun 02-Aug-15 09:29:29

Little bit of advice. Just make sure they use a new brush for you or take your own polish in (better still as you can choose the perfect colour for you). Getting alot of patients coming in with fungal nails following a pedicure.

That's not going to happen if she has gel nails! They just use the brush that comes with the polish.

ilovelamp2 Sun 02-Aug-15 09:35:08

I knew mumsnet would have the answers - thank you clever people! So, I think I want polish that lasts as opposed to longer nails so Any of the gel polishes is the answer? Good tip about taking a bottle for touch ups. We are in Rhodes for two weeks so will be in pool/sea/sand. Pedicure. Right. I am learning!!!

Our local salon has something called gel manicure and gel pedicure for 30 pounds and I have a voucher for 10 off with Now I know what that actually means, it sounds like what I want!

Any ideas about the tan? Before or after nails?

DisappointedOne Sun 02-Aug-15 09:38:21

Wouldn't matter.

GenevaMaybe Sun 02-Aug-15 09:40:49

Have the spray tan day before you go on hols. If you're in London there's a mobile beauty company called perfect 10 who will visit your house with a pop-up spray tan tent.

Exfoliate every morning in the shower for a eek beforehand. Moisturise every day except the day of the tan. Go for a light to medium shade. Enjoy!

ilovelamp2 Sun 02-Aug-15 09:45:14

Thanks Geneva - great tips. I had no idea about the prep! Will start now and book in for the Tuesday. Need some thing to take the edge of these grey legs - thanks to this rubbish 'summer'!

GenevaMaybe Sun 02-Aug-15 09:46:40

Tell me about it. Mine are blue-grey with thread veins. Nice.

Spermysextowel Sun 02-Aug-15 09:47:40

I'd prob have the tan done first. A colour that'd look horrible on pasty skin (think tangerine!) can look lovely with a tan, so you'd have more colour options.

nailsathome Sun 02-Aug-15 09:52:22

Shellac (a hybrid polish) is said to last for up to 2 weeks whereas you will find that true gel polishes are said to last for 3.

Different systems have different removal methods. Shellac, for example, is soak off whereas some of the others are buff off.

Also speak to the technician about the colours as some fade very quickly in sun/swimming pool/sun cream situations

LouisaJF Sun 02-Aug-15 09:54:03

I used to be the editor of a beauty magazine, so here you go:

What is the difference between gel polish and gel nails? Gel nails are stronger, full nail enhancements. Gel polish is basically a stronger version of a normal nail polish that is cured under a UV lamp.

Are shellac/Jessica nails the same as gel nails? Shellac is a brand name of a gel polish. Jessica is just a brand of nail polish.

Can you get toes done as well as fingers? Yep!

How long will it last? Gel polish can last up to two weeks depending how it is looked after and then needs to be removed. Gel nails can last 3 weeks but will then need in filling (tarted up to last another three weeks, you can go in to wear them forever with regular in fills) or removing.
How do you get em off? Ideally you should have them removed at a salon as it's easy to get it wrong a damage the nail plate. If you must do it yourself, soak cotton wool in acetone and wrap it around the nail for 10-15 minutes.

I might get a spray tan - do I need to get nails done first or afterwards? Do the tan first as it may stain the nails.

nailsathome Sun 02-Aug-15 09:54:12

And if you plan to have nails and tan on the same day, do nails first because otherwise you'll likely have lifting where the tan residue prevents the polish from sticking to your nails properly.

Laura7010 Sun 02-Aug-15 10:02:50

I agree with PP you want a gel polish on your natural nails. You can have loads of different colours or a French manicure if you wanted. Also a gel pedicure for your toenails.
In regards to a spray tan, I would get this after the nails. You won't want to sit all sticky after having had a spray tan to get your nails done. You'll want to get straight home and whip your clothes off till it settles on your skin properly. It won't stain your nails as a good beauty therapist won't get any on your nails to begin with. I would go in the evening of possible then sleep in your tan and wash off in the morning.

londonrach Sun 02-Aug-15 10:03:41

Disappointed. Thanks for letting me know. Spot the mntter who never had her nails done due to my work.

ilovelamp2 Sun 02-Aug-15 10:06:43

Thank you Louisa! That is a very comprehensive post from an expert - what a great job. I think I am steered away from the gel nails then as it sounds like I would need to keep them going with fillers and I doubt I would actually do that! Thanks

TiredButFine Sun 02-Aug-15 10:20:42

I had shellac for holidays on my toes, it literally lasted 6 weeks with barely any chips. However it did not last nearly as well on my hands, where gel seems to last better?!?

I would go for tan on one day, as fake tan "calms down" after a day or two plus it may stain your nails, then nails just before the holiday so they look optimum when you get there.

If you have dark eyelashes, you might want to think about an eyelash tint, as then you won't actually need mascara. It gives mine a good boost plus then whether swimming/going out you look like you have mascara on without the faff of it running down your face or needing to take it off.

TiredButFine Sun 02-Aug-15 10:23:24

Also, whether gel or shellac I can usually pick a lot of it off then soak the rest off with acetone, I've never had it soaked off at the salon *please note that I am a scruffy cow and this does mess up your nails and isn't recommended but is strangely satisfying.

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