Product Review - Essence DIY Gel Manicure

A fancy manicure is the perfect finishing touch to any look.  When I saw that Essence had a DIY gel manicure range with an affordable price tag I just had to see if it was too good to be true!

(l-r: primer £2.50, cleanser £2.50, mini LED lamp £19.90, top-coat £3.00, peel off gel base £3.00)
With promises of a gel manicure that will last up to 10 days I decided to put it to the test:

The range (which is available in Wilkos) is easy to use, with instructions on the back of the packages and bottles.  First you cleanse your nails with the special cleanser, then apply the primer.  Next you apply an even and thick coat of the peel off gel base and set this with the fancy LED light, which couldn't be easier to use.  The lamp comes with a USB cable so you just need to attach it to you laptop/tablet, perfect for manicures on the go or a quick touch up in the office!  You turn the lamp on with the button on the top and the light stays on for the required 10 seconds, so you don't even have to time it yourself. Perfect.  A quick wipe of cleanser removes any sticky residue before you apply any nail varnish of your choosing (I chose 'Purple 132' at £1.60).  When your varnish has dried you need to apply a gel top coat, for this trial I went with clear but there's a whole range of different effects like glitter and plumping.  This top coat is once again set with the lamp.  To finish off you need another quick wipe with the cleanser to get rid of any stickiness and your done.  The only down side with it is the smell, which reminded me that I was applying chemicals to my nails.  Perhaps not something I'd do every week, but once in a while and your nails should be fine.
So, a DIY gel manicure at home which claims to last up to 10 days?  Lets see how long it lasted:
And Day 10

I was very impressed by the initial results. A high shine and rock hard finish in a bold colour gave a DIY gel manicure to match any salon's.  My manicure stood up well to a few days at the office, a bit of shopping and looked fab on a coffee date. But on Day 5 disaster struck! The manicure just couldn't cope with the washing up.  I only lost one nail though and it came off neatly thanks to the peel of base.  A quick touch up and the trial continued!  Following this slight hiccup the manicure managed to stand up to baking, long hot baths and even sewing (for those of you who don't sew: normal non gel manicures are always ruined by fighting with dress making pins). It wasn't until a guitar lesson on Day 9 that I lost another nail but lets face it, that's pretty close to 10 days.

When I was ready to remove my nails they came of relatively easily.  My nails did feel a little rough afterward but a good nourishing cream will keep them healthy.  Overall I am very happy with the results of this Essence DIY Gel Manicure range and have been recommending it to all of my friends all ready.  Now I'm recommending it to you (although wear gloves when washing up and don't rock and roll too much on your guitar).

Rating: 9/10

Love F*2DIY4 x
@fashiontodiyfor #fashionDIY

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