When I found Sally Hansen Miracle Gel during a recent grocery outing, I was intrigued. No UV-lights? No going to the nail salon and breathing a roomful of toxic fumes? $7.94 per bottle? Ok, I’ll try it.
We read all these raving reviews on blogs all the time. Personally, the most helpful reviews are the ones where the person was not impressed with the product. I was very surprised at the outcome.
If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve noticed that a different type of picture has been filling my feed. Normally, I have pictures of my dogs, but with all of the home-buying drama and stress that’s unfortunately accompanying it I realized I needed some pampering. So I treated myself to a cut + color and a gel mani last week.
I don’t know about you, but I rarely ever bother doing my nails because the color always chips in a few days, and I’m left feeling regret at ever spending the
time money for such a short-lived manicure. When I pay more for a gel manicure, the results last 14 days but I hate how the manicure wreaks havoc on my nails. I have weak nails to begin with and I rarely indulge in that luxury.
Miracle Gel doesn’t require a lamp with UV lights. Instead, it uses natural light —sunlight, if you were wondering, not our incandescent light bulbs— so there’s no upfront cost in that little UV-light box with other at-home gel manicure systems. I’ve always hated putting my hands under UV bulbs. Isn’t that the same no-no as going to a tanning bed, but for your hands?
Friends and family were very interested in my photo updates, and I told them I’d write a review on day 14. Well, this manicure didn’t last 14 days. It didn’t even last 7.
I was extremely pleased at how easy this gel manicure was to apply. Two coats of color, then one coat of the gel top coat. (I did 3 coats of color, as this shade was a bit translucent).
I had one minor chip on my middle finger. I had only showered and done minor dishes, so it’s not like I did and heavy housework for that chip to appear, but it still looked good. At this point I wasn’t sure whether it was user-error or the product.
Still no more chips, but I had also been very occupied with web design and had not tinkered with too much housework or packing up the house. There was some slight wearing-away of the polish at the nail beds, but this happens with gel manicures as well. At this point I thought that the gel manicure was good, as I only had one chip.
The last day of the manicure as I was too angry to keep my nails looking as they did. This is the first picture of my right hand, as the only chip was on my left hand before. I now had a chip on my right pinky nail. Also, my right index fingernail’s polish was visibly lifting at the nail bed. The polish had erroded more at the nail beds and it was clear that I had to take it all off.
Some of my Instagram followers mentioned that they peeled their Miracle Gel manicure after day six. My manicure didn’t even last that long. I was really hopeful this product lived up to its promises, but I am extremely disappointed. I’m sure that sunlight’s UV rays don’t line up to the salon’s UV light bulbs, but this was a huge letdown.