09.10.2014
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I’ve been obsessed with gel nail polish ever since I got it done in China over the winter holiday. The Sephora gel shine at home gel color system  has everything I need to create a perfect gel nail look without having to go to the salon. The LED light really sold me on this Sephora by OPI gel nail kit because I was hearing so many bad things about UV light.
I had previously bought some gel nail polishes before I got the Sephora kit, and I  hadn’t yet tried the TruGel color in Flamingo (neon pink) so I went with that as my color.
Before applying the base coat, the nails need to be free of all oil residue and the cuticles must be pushed back so that there’s a smooth surface to work on. This picture shows what it looked like after I applied and cured the first coat of the neon pink gel polish in Flamingo. After I finished the glitter application, I applied the top coat to seal in the glitter and cured my nails for the last time. The Sephora by OPI gelshine at home gel color system is DEFINITELY worth the $159 investment. I wish I’d read your wise and wonderful post before I tried my first DIY gel manicure! So now I know that next time, thin-thin-thin coats, and don’t go anywhere near any skin — just like you said! I have found with certain formulations of gel polish the bubbling effect that you describe occurs. Polish Etc has been woefully neglected lately, and while I wish things were different, wishing won't change anything. I've been wearing a lot of gel nail polishes lately (since they consistently last for more than a week without any sign of wear) and today's post is another gorgeous gel polish.
Amy McGinnessDecember 8, 2013 at 1:39 PMI wear what ever colors I want, no regard to season lol. Import charges previously quoted are subject to change if you increase you maximum bid amount. I’ve been looking for a legit gel nail kit ever since then, and finally FINALLY I found one that fulfills all of my requirements!


Makes it super easy to spray the perfect amount onto the nail pad to clean the surface of the nail pre and post gel polish application.
Although the UV curing light is a less expensive alternative to the LED curing light, UV rays are commonly associated with a higher instance of hyper-pigmentation and more seriously skin cancer.
I also didn’t end up using the glitter polish as shown in the picture below to the right of the hot pink polish, and instead I used cosmetic grade loose glitter from the MAC Wonder Woman collection in reflects pearl. Since the surface is sticky with gel residue the glitter adhered to the nail, and I tried to concentrate the glitter on the tips of my nails, and letting the rest fall loosely up towards the cuticle area in a subtle gradient. Don’t put on too much at a time, the gel will run onto the edge of the nail and create a puddle which will invariably harden into a weird chunk once you cure it. Apply thin coats and try not to touch the surrounding skin on your finger, keep the polish on ONLY the nail.This way the end result will look super neat and professional. Make sure to clean the edges of the nail BEFORE you cure just in case of spillage to avoid creating weird chunky bits on the sides of your finger. Apply polish to one hand, and cure that entire hand before moving onto the other hand, this prevents the polish from getting smudged off before you get a chance to cure it.
Make sure to wipe the nail with the nail cleanser only after you’ve applied ALL layers of polish and cured the top coat.
If you think about how much you’re saving by using this at home system compared to going to a salon and getting a full set of gel nails for $60 a pop, it totally pays for itself in less than three salon visits. I really love mine I finally did gel on my toes and it still looks perfect a month later!! It comes with gel removal wraps that have a cotton pad on the inside to soak up a lot of acetone, and they’re very easy to wrap onto any size finger. It has worked great for the past few months, but recently I have been having some problems. Have you tried applying very thin coats and curing it for a longer period of time between each coat? Hopefully in the coming weeks I will be able to post more regularly, but also please stay tuned for a big and very exciting announcement in the coming weeks! I used three coats with Gelish base and topcoat and cured it with my Sally Hansen LED light for the photos below. If you reside in an EU member state besides UK, import VAT on this purchase is not recoverable.
I also wanted an option that was more compact, so this LED light was perfect on both of those grounds! I used a q-tip for applying the glitter, probably not the best idea because a lot of the cotton fibers from the q-tip stuck to the gel residue as well.


Even if you only use it every other time, and alternate between this kit and salon visits you’ll still be saving a crapload of money. After doing many searches for LED curing lamps, this Sephora by OPI one is still the best value, even compared to options on Amazon or Ebay. Two things you can do to make sure the gel does not adhere to your cuticles is (1) to use a wood stick or something similar that has a straight edge to clean the edges of the polish before you cure it. Sometimes a nail looks fine and a few hours later the layers under the top coat become loose and bubble.
When this happened to me, I found that curing thinner coats for a longer period of time results in a bubble-free manicure. Just make sure that you apply the coats as thin as possible and that you cure for the entire duration of the time (approx 30 sec). In particular, CND’s shellac colors with any kind of shimmer in it do not cure properly even with multiple passes under the LED light. Three coats may seem like a lot, but I always use at least three coats with gel polishes because it is best to apply the polish in extremely thin coats (a beginner's gel polish mistake is to apply it as you would nail polish, and thick coats prevent the gel from curing properly).
Next time I’m probably going to use a sponge or something to pick up the glitter instead. If you don’t have anything at hand, you can also just use the free edge of a nail from your other hand to clean the boundary between nail and cuticle before you cure.
If that doesn’t work come back and we’ll figure something out together Thanks for reading my blog!! In my opinion it’s either got to be (1) the power of the LED light being inadequate, or (2) the layer of polish is too thick. You Glare, I Glow is a bright, vivid, pigmented purple that was released as part of the Gelish summer 2013 neons collection, All About The Glow. All in all, I’m super happy with this purchase, and I will most definitely be doing many gel nail tutorials from now on!
The top layer is hard and dry, but the nail looks like there is a huge air bubble under the top coat. This violet purple really packs a punch, and while it may be more of a summer color, there's nothing wrong with neons in early December, right? Or you can also try and file the excess down a little bit, although this does result in a dull finish due to the abrasiveness of the nail file.



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