I’m going to start this by saying one thing: My nails are terrible. Like, truly awful.
They’re short and wide, fan and flatten out towards the end so false nails won’t even stick to them, peel, shred, have both vertical and horizontal ridges, and have torn back so far over the years that the nail bed on most of them starts about 4-5mm back from the end of my finger. They are so weak and peel so much I almost never have to cut them because they just tear off before they get that long.
When I use most nailpolish and remover, or even forget to use a strengthener regularly, it takes months to recover. Sometimes they bend and buckle to the point that the entire nail of polish lifts off in one piece. They’ve always been like this.
In addition to that I generally do a terrible job with nail polish and smudge or otherwise ruin it within an hour. Despite this, I love it, and have a ridiculous amount of bottles for someone who is barely able to use it.
Recently I decided to clear out most of my polishes and start fresh with some 3 free (yet to arrive) and strengthener based polishes that would hopefully be kinder to my sensitive nails.
My first trial is this product: Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure. I’ve tried the regular SH salon manicure (no longer available as far as I know as it’s been replaced by complete) and liked the colour and application.
This one is advertised as base coat, strengthener, nail growth, colour, top coat, chip resistance and gel shine all in one. Kinda sounds too good to be true but I thought I’d give it a shot as Sally Hansen nail strengtheners are generally pretty good.
Having not looked after my nails recently I was in the challenging position of trying to find a colour that would actually be flattering on bitten back stubby nails, so the attractive and eye catching reds, purples, blues etc were out. I eventually settled on this colour, Commander In Chic.
It’s neutral but a bit different. In this picture it looks brown but in the store it looked more grey. In truth it’s a mysterious grey-brown-purple that changes in the light.
So far I’m really happy with it. I used two coats, with no other base or top coat products, and I got a thick glossy finish in a colour that somehow manages to actually improve the look of my damaged nails.
I’ve been wearing it for 2 days now and there are no chips, cracks or smudges, although I’m seeing some minor edge wear on a couple of nails. Now that may sound unimpressive for less than a day, but for me it’s kind of a miracle. Generally it would have started peeling by now.
I’m so happy with the finished result that I kind of want to go out and buy all the colours; but I’ll wait a few days and see how it performs on the strengthener side of things. If your nails aren’t as bad as mine, though, and you just want smooth glossy colour, definitely go for it!
RRP in Australia $14.95 a bottle. My latest beauty must have!