Try This: OPI Axxium Gel Manicure

Hello fine folks!

Danielle here giving you the 411 on a hot new nail trend.

So as you know, one of my beauty New Year’s Resolutions this year was to always have a manicure. I have dozens of nail polishes so this couldn’t be that hard. But then we all know how quickly nail polish chips. Even my favorite OPI for Sephora winds up chipping after about 4 days and with a crazy schedule like mine, I don’t always have the time to remove the chips and redo. I was in need of something groundbreaking.

Back in January I explained to the fine folks at the salon I’ve been going to for years, that I had resolved to have a standing manicure appointment every week. But my manicurist explained she could do me one better and talked me into getting OPI Axxium Gel Manicure, a manicure to the tenth power!

Instead of regular nail polish, OPI Axxium Gel Manicure uses a substance that I could only describe as colored gel that is brushed on your nails and then hardened under a UV lamp. My manicurist explained that the gel would last like 2 weeks without chipping or smudging. I was sold–but worried it would cost me like $50 (I’m not playing with my budget this year)–I breathed the hugest sigh of relief when she told me it was just $28. Yes, $28 is still a bit steep considering a regular manicure is around $10-$12 but how many times have you gotten a regular manicure and felt cheated when only 2 days later your nails look shot? Exactly. Plus, you would have to go in for a manicure every week. I’ve had the gel manicure done three times since and the longest lasted me a little more than two weeks.

The procedure takes about 45 minutes. Your nails will be filed, clipped, and buffed like they normally would with a manicure, but then the magic comes. First a coat of a clear OPI Axxium base was applied to my nails. After each coat, my hands would sit under a UV lamp device. After the clear coat dried, then came my base coat. Unfortunately for now, OPI Axxium doesn’t come in the full range of colors like their regular line. The colors they do have come in a good range though. I chose OPI’s Lincoln Park After Dark and then Russian Navy because I love dark, vampy colors for fall/winter. It didn’t take very long for my nails to dry and when it came time for me to dig in my bag for my wallet to pay—not a single smudge. Perfection. Though not as decorative as Claire’s Wah Nails, you still get a long lasting manicure.

When it’s time to take them off, you go back to your manicurist who will buff your nails a bit, apply some remover, and then wrap your nails with foil until the remaining gel slides off. Your nails will not suffer like they would with acrylics.

If you’re in the Queens area and want to try this out, call and make an appointment at the Aveda Natural Look Salon in Queens Center Mall (where I get my brows threaded to the gods by Rajni). I hear this same procedure is $40 and up in Manhattan salons so bring some extra change with you if you’re city-bound. This procedure is offered at many salons nationwide (and perhaps worldwide), so inquire with your manicurist.

What do you think of the gel manicure? What do you get done at the nail salon? Tell me in the comments!

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