UV gel nail polish has increased in popularity with women who frequent salons and nail bars. Women try to stretch their manicures for as long as possible to get value for their money, but also because of the time constraints in modern day life. Regular nail lacquer takes a while to dry, even with newer brands that claim to dry in 15 seconds or less. A UV gel polish, in contrast requires a nail curing lamp to set, but once that’s done, no additional drying time is required. This makes it preferable to women who have busy lives and don’t have time for regular salon visits.
So, what is UV gel nail polish?
Like traditional nail lacquer sold in stores and used at salons or nail bars, UV gel nail polish comes in different colors and is applied using a brush. The bottles of polish usually come with their own brushes, but some brands sell the polish in little pots which have to be applied using a long handled brush sold separately. While both forms of polish are best applied using thin coats, UV gel polish has to be cured between each coat before a new one is painted over it. A nail curing lamp is required to cure gel polish.
What are the advantages of using a gel nail polish?
Gel polish is favored over regular lacquer because of the benefits it has to offer. The most important being the amount of time it can stay on the nail without chipping, even when regularly exposed to soap water, and hand crèmes. UV gel polish sets in minutes and the client is usually able to use their hands as normal without fear of smudging their polish. It is a practical option for women who don’t have time for regular salon visits as it can last up to two weeks or longer, depending on the brand of polish used and the condition of the underlying nail.
Are there any disadvantages to using a gel nail polish?
The main disadvantage used to be the cost of application. Application required visiting a salon to have a nail technician apply the polish. This has however changed as gel polish is now available to purchase for home use. The cost of buying your own gel polish kit is quite significant, however if you consider the amount you spend on your salon visits, the upfront costs won’t seem as excessive.
Another disadvantage to gel polish is the amount of time it takes to remove it from your nails. Gel polish cannot be removed using regular nail polish remover, instead an acetone based remover has to be used. The acetone is either applied to the nail by soaking it in cotton wool, before placing it on the nail bed and wrapping it with foil, or soaking the fingers in acetone in a nail bowl. The soak off process can take anything from 15 to 20 minutes. Again the soak off process can be done at home, at a time that is suitable or convenient.
The final disadvantage is the gap that appears when your nail grows out. If your nails grow really rapidly, you may have to increase the frequency of your UV gel polish applications.
All these disadvantages can easily be mitigated. Like any other beauty product on the market, improper application or removal of gel polish can damage your nails.