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Are there many things better in girly-girl world than a good gel nails mani? The polish is always so shiny and pretty. The colors are amazing. Plus, I’m a huge fan of being done and dry as soon as I get up from the chair! But that price, y’all….uhhhhhhh, not a fan. At least not on a regular basis. Hence, why I’m taking you on this detour through Alternative Alley to explore the world of gel nails…but here, it’s DIY!
The Issues at Hand…
The Cheap Skate in me just won’t let me be great with that. You mean I need to pay $25-$35 (before tip, because I’m not that big of a cheap skate)? Just to get my nails painted?? Not to mention unless I’m somewhere that takes appointments, I might end up just sitting and waiting an extra 30-45 minutes….just to let someone paint my nails?? Then there’s the fact that I’ll have to return there a few weeks later to either get those babies re-painted (for another $25-$35 plus tip) or have them soaked off for anywhere between $10-$15. Mmm… can’t….I just can’t. I know….I’m such a tight wad.
The Best Gel Nails Solution…
Now if you’re a tight wad like me or if you truly can’t afford to put something like this in the budget consistently, I feel like we have a solution…or at least I’ve found one for myself. I do my own dang gel nails at home!
Yep, I got the light and everything. I’m the real deal baby…lol! I paid around $27 for this kit ONE TIME and I’m able to do my own gel nails endlessly. Now I’m not gonna lie, I was a little nervous when I did it the first time. However, it ended up being a piece of cake. The main mistake I made that first time out was not understanding why the technician would spray my nails with alcohol and rub over them with a cotton ball or paper towel after she was done with the light. Turns out that’s what sets them. Otherwise, they’ll be sticky and not seem “dry”. Don’t let my rookie mistake be yours if you try this 🙂
Cheap Gel Nails Bonus Pointers…
A few other considerations when using this DIY kit that will make it just as great for you as it has been for me:
- You can use the polish to gel in the kit with your own nail polish! For me, that means I can use it with my Dollar Tree $1 nail polish (swish!) There’s 2 ways- either combine some of your own nail polish with the gel polish in a separate container (which is included with the kit) and use that to paint your nails OR use the gel polish as a top coat over your polish. Either way, I’d recommend doing 2 coats of the gel and setting them under the light for each coat. This will be the one thing you might end up having to re-stock for yourself. You can just buy the gel polish at Target as well.
- Do your thumb separate from your other fingers. So apply the gel polish to your thumb and set it under the light. Then, do apply the gel to your other 4 fingers. The setting light is kind of small. So you won’t be able to fit your entire hand in there like you will at the salon. If your thumb is freshly applied and waiting to get under the light because your other fingers are in there, the gel will probably end up pooled in one corner of your thumb or slide onto your skin.
- Like I said before; once you’re all done with all the coats of gel you want to apply and have set it with the light, spray your nails with some rubbing alcohol and rub it on with a paper towel or put some rubbing alcohol on a paper towel and rub it on that way. This does a final set of the polish and it will be all dry.
One last thought…
Even though you’ve essentially done the same gel polish manicure you’d get at the salon, I still wouldn’t go all willy-nilly with doing things that might ruin your nails right away….like braiding your hair or buckling your child in their car seat. Other than that type of stuff, you’re pretty much good to go!
Well, well…would you look at that?! I might have just saved you so much money! You can find the kit at Target. Will you let me know when you try it?…maybe even take it a step further and tell me what you thought?