How to make your gel polish manicure last longer | No more peeling or chipping
6 Ways to Make Your Mani Last Longer
Gel manicures sound like something out of a beauty fairy tail: Shiny nails that can stay chip-free for two weeks or more? Count us in. But recent headlines have demonized the treatment—which requires the use of ultraviolet (UV) lamps to seal the polish to the nail—as a cancer risk.
Here's how it started: A release from the (AAD) outlined the consequences of frequent gel manicures (and their removal) including nail brittleness, cracking, and peeling. The information, which was provided by Chris Adigun, MD, FAAD, assistant professor of dermatology at The Ronald O. Perelman Department of Dermatology at New York University School of Medicine, also included a warning about skin cancer: "Women who frequently get gel manicures should consider their skin cancer risk because the UV light needed to cure the gel manicure is a risk factor for skin cancer."
So how strong are the UV lamps? A Brown University found that it would take more than 13,000 10-minute drying treatments to equal the radiation emitted by one session with an FDA-approved UV phototherapy device commonly used by dermatologists, which has a low cancer risk but is considered to be safe.
The AAD did NOT suggest that women stop getting gel manicures altogether, but rather that they should go on a gel "diet." Specifically, Adigun wrote that women who get gel manicures every two weeks should consider getting gels less frequently for the sake of their nail health. When women do get gel manis, they should apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher to their hands to minimize photodamage from the UV lamps, a.k.a. brown spots and wrinkles. (Some salons even provide sunscreen for customers, according to .)
Whether you're going to stick with regular polish or simply add SPF to your gel routine, there isn't a woman on the planet who doesn't want her manicure to last longer. Here are 6 easy tips from Women's Health associate beauty editor Jill Percia:
1. Go Light.Choosing light shades can help because they show fewer chips, meaning your mani looks fresher, longer.
2. Start Smart.Always use a base coat, because it gives polish something to adhere to. Base coat can be the difference between a mani that lasts two days versus an entire week.
3. Seal It In.When painting, be sure to "cap off" the tips with both the polish and top coat. It’s like seal for the nail edges, where chipping can first show up, says Butter LONDON nail ambassador Katie Jane Hughes.
4. Layer It On.Apply a fresh top coat every two days and make it a no-chip formula like Revlon Extra Life No-Chip Top Coat (.99, drugstores).
5. Add Glitter.If your mani starts to go downhill after few days, add some glitter to the tips or the entire nail. Glitter is like Spanx for your nails—it conceals problem spots.
6. Cover Up.If you're going on a cleaning spree, protect your digits with rubber gloves.
Video: How to GROW YOUR NAILS FAST!!! (actually helpful information)
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