DIY: CND shellac gel nails


DIY: gel nails

If you love the feeling of a professional shellac manicure from the salon but cannot afford to pay 30+ dollars every two weeks this article is for you!  I have very basic nail painting skills from years of practice and strong desire to stop frivolously spending money on manicures that I chip immediately upon leaving the salon so I decided to research doing my own shellac nails at home.  As it turns out, a self serve shellac manicure is no more difficult than a regular manicure and after a first time investment in the CND products anyone can have beautiful, strong, shiny nails!

Through some research I discovered that CND products and UV lamp are available for personal purchase on from various retailers.  I also discovered a list of the products necessary to complete the manicure, and information about the step-by-step procedure.

Products required:

  1. UV Lamp, 36 watts or higher.  Available on Amazon for $50-75.
  2. UV Base Coat by CND. Available on Amazon for approximately $12.
  3. UV Color Coat by CND. Available on Amazon for approximately $13.
  4. UV Top Coat by CND. Available on Amazon for approximately $12.

Total Investment: $90-110.  About the same as 3-4 manicures.

Step-by-step procedure:

  1. Start with clean dry nails. Remove excess cuticles and file nails into desired shape.
  2. Swipe nails with nail polish remover to remove any oils and residue.
  3. Apply a thin layer of the UV base coat. Cure each hand in UV lamp for 10 seconds.
  4. Apply the first thin layer of the UV color coat. Cure each hand in UV lamp for 2 minutes.
  5. Apply the second thin layer and swipe nail tips with the UV color coat. Cure each hand 2 minutes.
  6. Apply a layer of the UV top coat to entire nail, swiping the applicator over the tips.  Cure each hand 2 minutes.
  7. Wipe each nail with alcohol to remove sticky residual film.

Review: The manicure looks and feels salon-quality and lasts approximately 2 weeks.  Its definitely a worthwhile investment! With a small amount of practice and a little patience at-home shellac nails can be yours!

Downside.. They stay shiny and chip free for about two weeks so you may get tired of the color if you have nail color ADD like myself.  Happy shellac-ing everyone!