Fans of gelish rejoice. I’ve been introduced to a safer and long-lasting alternative, known as the Depend GelLack, which you can do on your own in the comfort of your home.
I’ve never done gel manicures because of all the horror stories I’ve heard about having them removed after a few weeks. Your nails are thinned, dry and brittle and you can’t apply anything on them afterwards. However, the Depend GelLack kit and polishes go easy on your nails, so that you can have colour that doesn’t chip off.
I repeat, it doesn’t chip off. At all. Let’s take a moment to let that sink in for a while.
Now let’s take a closer look at the starter kit.
And here’s a video tutorial that shows you how you can easily use the Depend GelLack system:
The Depend GelLack Obligatory Start Kit (S$99) comes with an LED lamp (fixed with a timer), an adapter, the Before/After Cleanser, Base Coat, Top Coat, an orange stick, a nail file and a manual with instructions. The kit is easy to set up and use, though you must note that the LED lamp operates only when plugged into the mains. All you need to do is to purchase a colour of your choice and the Remover Oil separately. Before starting on the GelLack kit, make sure that your nails are long enough such that they cover the skin of your fingertips; and while doing the manicure, that you remove any polish which gets onto your skin before placing your nails under the LED lamp.
The LED lamp is very lightweight, and so it’s also very portable. With its inbuilt timer of 30 seconds and 60 seconds, you don’t even have to watch the clock while getting your nails done. It’s convenient in that way. If you follow the instructions properly, the GelLack polishes dry quickly and you can go about your daily duties immediately. When I tried this for the first time, I could do the dishes in the same evening with no problem. In fact, as someone who does the dishes almost daily, I am extremely impressed that the Depend GelLack did not chip at all during the 2 weeks I had it on.
While I love how long-lasting this polish is, the polish itself does not go on as evenly as I’d have liked it to. In the swatch above, there are 2 coats of Scarlet. I suppose 3 coats would give a more even finish, but that means it will also be harder to remove.
The removal of the polish can be a bit tricky and time-consuming for some. Depending on how long you’ve had it on, the removal process will differ. There are 2 methods to remove the polish, but here’s a video (in Swedish) that shows the method I used:
You should leave the polish on for at least 2-3 weeks, as removing it before then will damage your nails. Soak your nails in hot water after you’ve massaged the Remover Oil on them. Then, gently scrape or peel the polish off as it softens. It sounds easy but I forgot to soak my nails when I first tried it, so I ended up chipping the polish – and possibly the top layer of my nails – away. When done right, your nails should emerge looking naturally smooth, with no discolouration (which some of mine fortunately did).
There’s no buffing, no filing, no drying time and no agonising over whether your nails are safe to touch after you’ve applied the top coat. It saves a ton of time because you don’t have to re-apply the polish and top coat every other day, and it saves you from embarrassment due to chipped polish. Your nails remain glossy for weeks on end, and you can even apply and remove normal nail polish over them whenever you like. Perhaps the best part is that no harmful UV rays are involved. It’s no wonder that the Depend GelLack system is a Swedish favourite.
If you’re in Singapore, you can get everything mentioned in this post exclusively at Watsons. Otherwise, you can head over to the Depend GelLack website to learn more about this range of products. Since trying it out the first time, I’ve gone on to bag home another nude shade (the colours retail at less than S$15 a pop). I’ll admit – I’m in love with this.
And I think you would be too.
Don’t bite it,