'I wanted to save money on manicures, so I tried the nail product going viral on Instagram.'

Mamamia’s Tried and Tested series is your review of the latest to hit our desks in beauty, health and wellbeing. You won’t find any #sponsored content here, just honest, relatable and independent advice. This week, Mamamia's Weekend Editor trials the Gellae DIY Semicured Gel Nail Stickers.

Approximately 18 months ago, I took my first dance with SNS. I know, I know, I was late to the party — I'd been a natural nail girlie for the longest time, having had a bad experience with shellac (read: nails got destroyed during removal), and had been afraid, so afraid, to let anything other than stock-standard nail polish near my mitts again. 

And to be frank, I didn't ever really bother with that either, because I type all day, every day for a living and it chips when I so much as look at it, so there's that. And then I tried SNS, and you don't really need my entire life story here, but let's just say I was hooked. Obsessed. My nails were so STRONG. So UNCHIPPABLE. So SUPPORTIVE OF MY DREAMS AND EMOTIONS.

Watch: Nobody asked for nails that could hold a tiny cup of coffee, but here we are. Post continues below.

Video via Mamamia

And that, friends, is how, for 18 months, I've been forking out approx $1300 a year on my nails and holy heck I have never actually done the maths on that before now and I'm quietly horrified.


However, I was definitely aware that all these nail appointments were adding up, and in the name of cozzie livs, I had to stop. Or at least... try to curb my habit. But do you know how sh*tty your nails look when you get SNS taken off and nothing to... replace it?

It's bad. Very very bad. 

Meanwhile, the manicure gods had obviously heard my plight, as I was being served *constant* posts on Instagram about a thing called 'semicured gel nail stickers'. They were cute. They were significantly cheaper than going to the salon every second Saturday. They were making some big promises.

So I decided to give them a crack.

What are Gellae DIY Semicured Gel Nail Stickers?

There are a few brands floating around doing semicured nail stickers, but I'd been seeing Gellae pop up a lot and went with them. But basically, semi-cured gel nail stickers are gel nail polish (aka shellac), but in sticker form. They look kinda like press-ons, but they're... not. They have the feel of stickers: thinner, softer, way more malleable.

Semi-cured gel nail stickers are, well... exactly that. They're made of gel polish, and then cured 60 per cent of the way, making them super flexible and as easy to put on as sticking nail-shaped stickers to your nails. You literally peel them off the sheet, stick it to your nail, cure under a UV/LED lamp for 60 seconds, and then file to the right shape. 

How did you go with it? 

After having my latest round of SNS removed, I tried to restrain myself from racing home to get these bad bois on my fingies. Surely I should let my real nails b-r-e-a-t-h-e for a minute? But I'm impatient, so after a couple of hours, I just went ahead and dived right in.


In the pack, you get 20 gel nail stickers (because, ya know, not everyone's nails are the same shape and size, so options), a wooden cuticle stick, a nail file and alcohol wipes — and you can buy the mini UV light, too (or nab one free if you buy two or more packs of stickers).

The stickers, UV lamp, and cuticle oil for later. Image: Supplied. 

I was nervous, which is weird because this was... not at all a big deal? Anyway, hands shaking, I peeled my first sticker off the sheet (which comes encased in a blackout packet, because exposure to UV light aka sunlight would harden them prematurely), carefully, caaaarefully laid it on my pinky and... voila! 


It was... insanely easy. 

I used the provided cuticle pushes to roll the edges, making sure they were pushed into every nook and cranny, then proceeded to sticker up the rest of my left hand. 

I used nail clippers to trim off the excess and then shoved my hand under the UV light, and this is where I went wrong, because I got way too close and it hurt. So, don't do that. Follow the instructions (what a concept!) and hold the lamp a bit further away from your nails. No pain. Just warm.

Close, a little too close. Image: Supplied.


Sixty seconds, and I was tap-tap-taping my nails on the table! They had gone hard, as promised, though maybe not quite as hard as I'd hoped — but you've got to remember that my nails were paper thin at this point AND I was coming off the back of 18 months of having acrylic polymer particles glued to my nails and essentially sanded off with a tiny angle grinder.

(And, full disclosure: I realised on my second application of Gellae nail stickers that I hadn't, ahem, read the instructions properly, and it turns out you're actually meant to do two rounds of light on each hand. So I did it properly the next time around, and they did feel a little stronger.)

 ANNNYWAY, they were also super easy to remove when I decided that I was done with white and wanted a fresh look — and yes, it was a decision not a necessity. These babies lasted a full two weeks and didn't even break a sweat.

The verdict.

The Gellae DIY Semicured Gel Nail Stickers were a cinch to apply and to remove, they lasted for a solid couple of weeks — and while my nails beneath them were rubbish when I started, in between taking them off to replace with a new colour or design, I could see the healthy new growth coming through. Any lingering damage was clearly the result of the SN removal, and not related to the sticker system.

Love a whimsical dusk-sky design. Just ignore the fact that I stuck one of them over a speck of dirt 🫠 Image: Supplied.


They didn't chip (I mean, they kind of can't, right?), and while they weren't as strong as having SNS done, they were a fraction of the cost. 

I definitely rate them as a way to nab yourself some cute nails when you're weaning off getting your nails professionally done on the reg — and a budget-friendly way to try out cute nail designs and trends while you're at it!

Want more from Alix Nicholson, Mamamia's Weekend Editor? Follow her on Instagram right here

Feature Image: Supplied.

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