By NICKY CHAMP
It’s the start of July and that means one of two things; you’re either pumped because you’ve estimated you’ll be receiving a nice little cash bonus shortly or you’re depressed because you’ll have to shell out more clams to the tax man.
Either way, these new and improved beauty tools allow you to save (time and money) on trips to the beautician/hairdressers by achieving professional looks at home – minus the diy disasters.
1. Gel manicures.
Good news for fans of smudge-free, chip-free nails, no longer do you have to pay $50+ for a gel manicure with the release of at-home gel polish kits.
There are still some concerns over the use of UV lamps used in gel manicures as the nail industry isn’t regulated but Opallac (available through Priceline) utilises LED technology – which is not harmful to skin and carries no more risk than mild sun exposure or strip lighting.
Opallac creator and director, Ruby Serobian says: “Our LED lamp is safe to use and long lasting, [and] there should be no risk over over-exposure.”
However, if you do want extra skin protection (I do, call me paranoid) you can wear fingerless gloves or apply a sunscreen to your hands prior to application.
The Starter Kit, $99, pays itself off after two uses and includes everything you need; a UV LED Lamp, three fairly decent gel colours: red, dark red and pale pink, a top and base coat, plus shine and soak solution and removal wraps.
How-to: the process is exactly the same as it is in the salon. Begin by filing and shaping your nails, roughen the nail surface with a light buff then apply the base coat. Cure this for 90 seconds then apply your first coat of colour, cure for 90 seconds, repeat this and finish off with the top coat and seal. Finish by swiping nails with the shine solution.
Tip: follow the instructions and apply the coats thinly, otherwise you end up with globby-looking nails that peel off easily. I also find gel manicures slightly weaken my nails so in between applications I like to use a strengthening product like Sally Hansen’s Complete Care 4-in-1 Treatment.