Gelish Holiday 2017 Collection Swatches

Little Miss Nutcracker

Here are swatches from the new Gelish Holiday Collection for 2017, called Little Miss Nutcracker.
S&M 2 November 2017 A

If you’d like to see these colors swatched live, please head over to the Smoke and Mirrors YouTube channel  for the swatching video!

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Are you ready for the Thrill of the Chill?

No, really. Are you ready? ‘Cause apparently it’s happening!

I’m not looking forward to winter, but I am looking forward to Gelish’s Winter 2017 collection, called the Thrill of the Chill.

TotC

We don’t have any official info from Gelish yet, but I have seen the collection for sale on a couple sites. The colors are:

  • Angling for a Kiss – dark red creme
  • Ice Cold Gold – sparkly gold glitter topper
  • Caviar on Ice – chocolate brown creme
  • Let’s Kiss and Warm Up – deep wine creme
  • My Main Freeze – pastel pink creme
  • Don’t Let the Frost Bite! – very deep purple creme

I’ve noticed that there haven’t been any polishes labeled “Trends” lately, though one from each of the last couple collections seemed to have qualified.  Is the “Trends” line kaput? If you’ve heard, please leave a comment below!

I realize I say this every time, but from what I am seeing so far, I am loving these colors.  What do you think? Will you buy them now, or wait until the holiday rush is over?

 

Gelish Holiday 2017 Little Miss Nutcracker Collection Swatches

S&M 2 November 2017 A

The new Gelish Holiday Collection, called Little Miss Nutcracker, has been released, and the Smoke and Mirrors YouTube channel has swatches for you! Please check out the video and let me know what you like, or any constructive criticism you have.

 

Olé My Way

S&M 18 October 2017

On these nails I used Gelish Olé My Way from the Fall 2017 Matadora collection, with mermaid pearl powder from Born Pretty on a couple of the nails.  This deep blue color turned out beautifully in just two coats!

Unfortunately I can’t recommend the pearl powder, as I’ve tried it two times with different top coats and haven’t had good results.  For these nails I used the inhibition layer to adhere the powder, then top coated with Top It Off from Gelish.  When I didn’t get the result I wanted after the first coat, I cleaned the inhibition layer off the index finger nail and applied some OPI Top Coat. Once that dried I added another layer of powder.

This time around I also used one of the silicone nail art brushes from a five piece set that I ordered from Born Pretty to press in the powder. Even then I wasn’t satisfied with the finish – it still seemed uneven –  and so I went back to using the applicator sponge provided with the kit for the second layer on the pinky nail.  I can, however, recommend the silicone brush set.  The brushes seemed like good quality for the price.

I’ve also found that Born Pretty now has an Amazon store.  Buying from them through Amazon seems safer and slightly faster – rather than waiting 4-6 weeks like usual for order delivery, I waited only 25 days for the brushes to come in.  Have you bought any items from Born Pretty through Amazon? What did you think?

Marshmallow Manicure

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About a month ago I saw a post on the Nails Magazine website about the “marshmallow manicure” that Morgan Taylor lead artist Gina Edwards had created for Caroline Herrera’s Spring 2018 NYFW collection models.

While Gina Edwards used Heaven Sent (formerly Little Princess) for the white color, I decided to use the new white called I’m Drawing a Blanco, from the fall 2017 Matadora Gelish collection.  I’m Drawing Blanco does have a bit of shimmer to it, which I embellished with some rhinestones and Gelish Grand Jewels to create this design. The butterfly is a double-stamped (first white, then black) image from stamping plate BP-07 I purchased at The Born Pretty Store.

New Gelish collection swatches posted!

I’ve been crazy busy adulting lately, but have been slowly working to add all my collection swatches to the Gelish Collection swatches page. Check back soon for more!

Collection Matadora

Mauve Your Feet

S&M 30 September 2017

One of the new colors from the Gelish fall 2017 Matadora collection is proving to be very popular so far, at least on social media. It’s called Mauve Your Feet, and I’ve been seeing it everywhere lately. Here’s my take on it.

This is 2 coats of Mauve Your Feet stamped with a rose design from Morgan Taylor Designer Plate 3720201-1 in black polish.  I used a plate and stamper from the Flirty Florals Collection 1 kit, and the design came out beautifully!

What do you think? Have you worn this color yet?

Review: Gelish PolyGel

S&M 31 August 2017

Over the past couple weeks I’ve been doing some product testing with Gelish® PolyGel™. (Of course I have to thoroughly test it on myself before recommending it to others.) This is a photo of my nails enhanced with clear PolyGel and then polished with one coat of Gelish Tickle My Heart (which Gelish is, unfortunately, no longer manufacturing).

I was going for a simple, neutral design with this set, but couldn’t resist a polish with a bit of glitter! You can see that I used the PolyGel to extend the nails, basically doubling the length of my free edge.

After using and wearing PolyGel for about 3 weeks now, I am happy to report that it is as user-friendly and easy to apply as they say. I had watched a few videos on the application of this product, yet I was still blown away by how easy it is to work with. It’s really something you have to experience for yourself!

PolyGel enhancements also sit on the nail very comfortably – it’s light and feels natural on my nail and fingers. This is in contrast to acrylics, which I have trouble getting used to… acrylic on my nail always feels like an enhancement to me.

I’ve applied both Gelish gel polish and regular polish to my nail with no issues, and experienced great wear time. As far as wear and tear, the PolyGel has held up very well. The only minor issue I’ve noticed is that the corners of my square nails are now rounded, especially the nail of the middle finger on my right hand. I believe this is due to the softness of PolyGel as compared to acrylic or even hard gel. But after ~3 weeks of wear, that isn’t too bad! I have experienced very little lifting – much less than I usually do with acrylic or even hard gel.

Some tips for working with PolyGel:

  • Pour the slip solution onto your PolyTool over the dappen dish, with the brush-side down. The Polytool will guide the slip solution liquid into the dish, and at the same time your are priming your brush with slip solution.
  • Slice off only a small amount of PolyGel. You can always add more product.
  • You don’t need a lot of Slip Solution on the brush. Be sure it’s not dripping, only saturating the bristles.
  • If the PolyGel starts to feel gummy or tacky under your brush as you are working with it on the nail, then you’ll know it’s time to put some more slip solution on the brush.
  • PolyGel is great for techs who prefer to hand file because it files so easily and quickly. Use a fine bit and a low speed if e-filing!
  • I recommend starting with the trial kit and PolyTool because that’s everything you need to get squeezing, slicing, and rolling with PolyGel. Once you get a feel for the product, you can add always buy other colors or brushes and tools to your arsenal.

Have you tried PolyGel yet? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this product!

New Gelish Brush and Bottle

Matadora Collection final with watermark

As of Summer 2017, Gelish has updated their gel polish formulation, as well as the full-size bottle and brush. The new formulation, according to Gelish®, is:

  • enhanced for better stability
  • product flow improved
  • easier to lay down
  • smoother

What’s the same?

  • smooth application
  • streak-free and shiny
  • chip-free for up to 21 days

I never had any issues with the Gelish formulation, so honestly it just seems like the same great product to me!


The new bottle features:

  • A similar overall shape to the already-familiar Morgan Taylor® & Gelish Dip bottle design
  • Shrink-wrapped, enclosed bottle with larger color call-out dot,  and color band

New bottle pros:

  • Branding continuity within the Hand and Nail Harmony brand
  • Opaque wrapper with no window means you won’t have your Gelish curing inside the bottle (due to being exposed unintentionally to UV light, including ambient UV light in the room)
  • color band can be seen from almost any angle
  • More difficult to counterfeit

New bottle cons:

  • Old bottles now seem outdated
  • Gelish has re-named some of their old colors to match them to Gelish Dip and Morgan Taylor color names

The new brush features:

  • dome-bristled brush
  • increased bristle count
  • ergonomic cap

New brush pros:

  • smooth application with full coverage
  • increased product control when polishing in the cuticle area
  • helps pick-up the perfect amount of product
  • cap flares out at the base, which makes it slightly easier to grip and position in the hand

The new brush really does make a big difference! I thought it wouldn’t, but was surprised at how much these seemingly minor tweaks enhanced application. Check out the Smoke and Mirrors YouTube channel for my in-depth brush comparison and test video to see the difference!

New brush cons:

  • Old brushes aren’t as easy to use, by comparison

Final Thoughts:

Overall, I love the new design and, for brand recognition reasons, this was clearly a great move for Gelish. I’ve been a Gelish user for almost a decade now, and I’m looking forward to many years of using this excellent product for myself and my clients. There’s just a tiny part of me, the OCD part of my brain, that is a bit ticked with all the name changes. But I guess that’s progress and we’ll have to be understanding about it!

You can also check out the Fall 2017 issue of Nail Style for more information on the all the new Hand and Nail Harmony products.

Why you should inventory your nail polish regularly

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A quick story from a recent personal experience: At the salon where I currently work they store nail polish on a wall shelf.  I typically bring my own supplies, but one client asked for a color off the shelf. I had no idea how long this polish had been there, but decided it would probably be fine to use. I proceeded to perform the manicure and sent her on her way. She was my list client of the day, so I headed home a couple hours before the salon actually closed.

Less than an hour after I got home the salon called to tell me that the client had called complaining that her manicure had become gritty. She wanted to know if I could re-do her nails right away, before the salon closed. So I headed back to the salon to see what the problem was. Long story short – the polish I had used was very old, and the manicure had developed tiny bubbles over the hour or so after it was done.  It looked like I had used a texture polish!

So I applied a different color of polish and apologized profusely to the client. I also tossed the bottle of polish in the trash while the client was there, so she could see that we would not be risking this happening again. After I was done, I thought “How can I prevent this from happening again?”. Not only had a I lost time but also money, and caused frustration for myself and the client.

The answer I came up with is simple: inventory the nail polish on a regular basis.  Did you know that the shelf life of Gelish is 18 months?12M

On cosmetics there is a symbol indicating the product’s shelf

life, which usually looks like this:

 

The number will change depending on the number of months of good shelf life. I’m not saying that your gel polish won’t last longer than 18 months, but the expiration date is the recommended length of time in which you should use the product. After that amount of time it’s important to check them before you sit down to use them on a client!

If you find this information useful, here are some ideas for inventorying your nail polish:

  • Record the polish brand, color name and/or item number, and the date you purchased it, into a spreadsheet or notebook. Some people like to do this on paper so they can include a swatch.
  • At predetermined intervals, say every 6 months or 12 months, go through your collection and personally test all the bottles that are approaching expiration.
  • If you don’t know when you bought a polish or other cosmetics, you can try checking the database at checkcosmetic.net or similar sites to find out what the shelf life is of that batch.

If you have any experience with polish expiring or with inventorying your stash, let me know in the comments below!