“Gelish is a pure, thin UV gel that is pigmented in various degrees to give colour” Marian explains. The formula, which applies like a classic polish, but lasts much longer, is slightly thicker than shellac; expect it to last up to three weeks while protecting your natural nail (bonus). Marian says “Gelish can often work better for those with weaker nails because of its impenetrable polish”.
CND Shellac is a ‘genuine hybrid’ UV gel polish. That means its formula is similar to a traditional nail polish (like Rimmel, or Revlon). so it can be applied more thinly. Marian says ‘it looks like a classic polish but has the benefits of UV gel (dries instantly, is extra glossy and lasts for two weeks). The thinner application means removal takes around five minutes, max.
While both types of manicure take a similar time to apply – around 30-45 minutes – the application process is different. Shellac’s ‘no buff system’ means the nails don’t need to be buffed before the polish is applied (or removed). With Gelish, they do. This breaks the seal, meaning the polish can ‘lift’ more easily. Removing gel polish takes around 15-20 mins.
You’ll often hear that it’s essential to take a break between manicures so that your nails can “breathe”, but Marian has called it – that’s a lie. She explains “nails don’t need a breather. In fact, you could keep the polish on permanently. It’s the application, removal and aftercare (like applying daily nail oil), that’s important”. And what about exposure to UV from the nail lamps? There’s no need to worry, Marian says; “the exposure is equivalent to around two minutes of natural daylight”.
Want a more natural finish and a quicker removal time (or lack patience, like me)? Then go with Shellac. If your nails need a hardier polish (that lasts longer), its Gelish all the way. So, which is best? We’re leaving this one up to you – you’ve got the expert knowledge now, after all.
Gelish Vs Shellac? Here’s 5 things you need to know
You’ve seen them in the salon, but do you actually know the difference between gel and shellac? It’s sort of like Ant and Dec, or the Kardashian sisters – same same, but different, right? Wrong. We asked Marian Newman, nail tech expert, for her guidance in deciding which formula is best. In the blue corner…
By Beth Ludolf
Book your next (and every) beauty treatment on Treatwell.
Find the best salons near you, 24/7, online. The best bit? There’s 20% off for new customers. Use code NICETOSEEYOUSearch Treatwell
If you've considered nail extensions something of a gulity pleasure then prepare to wear them with pride. Hot on the heels of the Autumn collections, where nail guru Marian Newman seduced the FROW with show-stopping sheer-tipped extensions at Gareth Pugh and Vivienne Westwood, they're officially back on the beauty agenda. Fitted elegantly to your natural nail (and not to be confused with gels that simply add strength and lustre to your real nail without any plastic tip), the new breed of extensions couldn't be further away from the thick, square tipped, talons of the past. Infact, it would take an expert to…View the board
Maybe you choose gel because a friend recommended it, maybe you’re a first-timer, or maybe you're in it for the hand massage bit at the end. Either way, as you sit comfortably in your salon chair, ever look to your fingertips and think ‘what actually is this gel stuff?’. We’re well-versed in the world of manicures (it's kind of what we do best), so you need wonder no more. From how it’s done, to how it comes off, here’s our guide to the gel manicure. Easy. Except choosing your colour – that’s not easy. By Rachel SpeddingRead more
We did our time, we waited a (long) while, but here it is – summer. In all it’s clammy, muggy, rain one minute, beaming sunshine the next, glory. And you know what it makes me want to do? Find a shop that still sells Mini Milks. That, and get a colour-popping manicure. A sorbet-shaded shellac mani, for all those Instagram shots with endless Pina Colada’s. Shellac is the perfect choice for a trip away, as the polish stays put for up to two weeks. It also keeps healthy nails in top condition, as the gel-hybrid polish is applied in thin…View the board