A few weeks ago, we went on a trip to Missouri and a couple weeks before that trip, I began toying with the idea of getting my nails done. I’m more of a pedicure than a manicure girl, but my nails looked great, were all the same length healthy, etc. I wondered what would be the best way to keep them in that state of perfection, especially considering I’m a woman who’s on the computer 10 hours a day, cleans, cooks and cuddles a wriggly 3-year-old.
What about this “no chip” Manicure I’d been hearing so much about? Every nail salon from the spa at my gym to the walkthru spot at the mall seems to have signs that read: NOW OFFERING NO CHIP!!! If you don’t know what I’m talking about, it’s a manicure that’s supposed to last for two weeks. Like the name states, it’s not supposed to chip. They’re apparently ideal for going on vacation.
A few of my friends have gotten no-chip manis and pedis and love them. For days on end their nails would have that shiny, just-from-the salon look. Now I’m very picky about my nails. (Ha, find something that I’m *not* picky about!) I don’t like acryllics, tips and all that because it ruins your natural nails and I’ve got good natural nails.
Though you should see my mom’s hands. She could have easily been a hand model, they are the most perfect hands you’ll ever see. Growing up I remember how strangers would comment on how gorgeous her hands were. The nails grow long and in perfect ovals that she never needs to shape. I’ve got my dad’s square-shaped nailbed, so I rock the square look. (Obviously, I think about my nails too much.)
I squeezed some extra time out of my schedule and rushed to the mall. I had 45 minutes and thought it was worth a try for the no chip. By now my nails were dreadfully long, they were claws actually, but I figured the manicurist could take care of that. I went for the color Lincoln Park After Dark, and the woman began applying the no chip. She’d paint layer upon thick layer and in between layers my hand sat under an ultraviolent light contraption.
She touched my glistening fingernail. I jumped reflexively thinking she ruined my paintjob, but nope, there was no smudge. She smiled and said: “All done!” Wha? I looked at the clock, I had run out of time and instead of trim, sensible nails I had these long, beautifully colored claws.
Great. So fast forward a week, I’ve still got my claws, but they’re too dramatic. I feel like a mid-1990s bridesmaid. All that being said, they didn’t chip and felt thicker.
The next week my claws were nearing the length of entries into the Guiness Book of World Records and I wanted to remove the manicure. I went back to the same place. The manicurist soaked them in some Acetone and tried to wipe off the manicure. It stayed. After more soaking and wiping he busted out that electric sandblaster. You know the machine, it files down your nails. I was shocked because I detest that thing. I kept asking the guy if that was necessary, he said yes and to trust him. Well that was my mistake. I should have just walked out, but I didn’t. He applied the sandblaster to my nails to get it off.
Now they are much weaker than before, but they’re growing fast and in a month will be back to normal. I chalk it up to a learning experience.
Turns out the proper way to remove the no-chip manicure is to wrap your nails individually in acetone and then the manicure comes off. Although your nails come out weaker, they won’t be as weak as mine.
I may try the no chip again, but it certainly won’t be a cheap-o shop. From now on, those people will only be allowed near my toes.