Semi-permanent manicure: advantages and frequent doubts

The concept "semi-permanent manicure" usually refers to manicures with long-lasting enamel , whether it is applied to artificial nails -gel or acrylic- or applied directly to the natural nail.

It is an ideal manicure so as not to spend all day waiting for the polish to chip when doing any manipulation or receiving blows -when doing sports, for example- or when having your hands soak for a long time -on the beach, at the swimming, etc.-, from losing its shine, and not having to maintain it every few days.

The different brands of semi-permanent nail polish

There are many semi-permanent manicure enamels on the market, of different qualities. It is important to choose a good brand that invests heavily in research and development, something that guarantees the health of our nails. Some of them are CND Shellac, Essie Gel and GelColor OPI

The semi-permanent manicure par excellence is the one that is carried out with Shellac , a proprietary product of the North American brand CND , although people often refer to Shellac as a synonym for semi-permanent nail polish. It is the brand that offers more shine and one thinner layer , keeping the hydration levels of the nail and giving it a very natural look .

The brand also has a predominant place OPI , also from the United States, which managed to gain an important place in the market thanks to large investments in advertising with 'celebrities' such as Katie Perry or Selena Williams promoting their own color lines. In Spain it is still not as well known as Shellac, but it offers excellent results and has a chart of more than 150 colors .

Both CND Shellac and GelColor OPI They guarantee an intact enamel for 14 days , depending on the type of nail and the activity we do with our hands.

There are many other brands, but the two that we recommend as experienced manicure specialists are CND and OPI, which guarantee the health of the nail, the durability of the enamel and excellent value for money. It is important that you look always authorized centers CND and OPI to make sure they use original products. If you see centers that claim to use them but do not have the hallmark, we recommend that you notify CND through its website so that they can take action.

Pros and cons of semi-permanent manicure

Advantages: duration, shine and health of the nails

  • lasts until 14 days intact
  • Especially in the case of Shellac, it provides a unmatched shine
  • In the case of Shellac, the layer is thinner than other enamels and lets the nail breathe better
  • easy to remove without filing, with products based on acetone
  • Especially in the case of IPO, extensive color chart , with new colors almost every month
  • Relationship excellent price quality

The only drawback: wear the same color for 14 days

Being more durable, the only major downside to this type of manicure is that it doesn't allow you to change colors as often as a normal manicure. If you are one of those who quickly get tired of a color , it is worth trying the traditional professional enamels of the CND and OPI brand, Vinylux and InfiniteShine , which last up to 7 days intact and provide a large dose of shine, as well as being available in the same colors as Shellac or GelColor. As the CND Vinylux slogan says: change color because you want to, not because you have to.

How does it apply?

It can be applied on the natural nail or on an acrylic nail -in the case of gel nails, it is already applied enameled, like -. It is applied in three coats : a coat of polish that cures under UV or LED light for a few seconds, a second coat that dries for a few more seconds, and a final clear top coat that dries again.

In the application of enamel The state of the nail is very important , so it is highly recommended to go to a good professional. You have to file it just enough and necessary to avoid removing layers from the nail, and make a diagnosis of the type of nail to determine if any complementary treatment is necessary.

How to apply semi-permanent manicure

How is it removed?

Quality semi-permanent nail polish is removed by soaking the nails in warm water, placing a cotton soaked in remover product of each brand -some do it directly with acetone, but good brands have very effective products with very little percentage of pure acetone- and leaving it to act for about 15 minutes, wrapping each finger in silver foil. After this time, the coating can be very easily removed by gently scratching.

In fact, we know when brands are not good, among other things, because they are not so easy to withdraw. They may require purer acetone, which is more abrasive, to act on the enamel, and then the use of a drill, which, even when applied carefully, always removes layers of the natural nail.

7 frequent questions about semi-permanent manicure

  • 1) Do they weaken the bed, that is, the skin under the nail?

    All enamels can cause dehydration. In the case of a semi-permanent nail polish, the product is more opaque and has a thicker layer than a normal one, so the skin under the nail may have more difficulty breathing. However, if the enamel is of good quality -it has been proven that CND Shellac maintains hydration better, even over GelColor OPI, since it has a thinner layer- and we take proper care of the nail by applying oils daily, we will keep the bed hydrated and healthy.

    Advice: moisturize nails daily with special oils
  • two) Do they affect the health of the nail?

    Again, it depends on the quality of the product -CND Shellac and GelColor OPI have a very good grip on the nail- or if we do a good maintenance or not. If we wait too long to get our manicures done again, the polish layer can lift and moisture can get between the polish and the nail, creating a breeding ground for fungi and bacteria that can even lead to infections. To avoid this, there are those who tear off the layer when it begins to lift, something that is not a good idea because with the enamel layer a thin layer of the nail itself can be torn off, weakening the natural nail.

    Advice: Carry out periodic manicure maintenance -every 15 days at most- in your beauty salon to ensure perfect adhesion of the enamel.
  • 3) By requiring drying with UV rays, will my skin be harmed?

    It's no secret that UV rays can be very damaging to the skin. However, the exposure of each hand to this light during a semi-permanent manicure does not reach a minute, so the dose received is very low. It doesn't hurt to apply sunscreen to your hands when we get this type of manicure. And more and more salons change this type of lamps for LED lamps, which also require less drying time.

    Advice: apply sunscreen to your hands before giving yourself a manicure, or opt for salons that use LED lamps, like Beauty Nail Concept.
  • 4) Does it last the same in all cases?

    No. It depends on the activity we do and the type of nail we have. If we have flexible nails, it is possible that the semi-permanent manicure lasts a little less, about 10 days. There are also nails with a tendency to pickle, or greasy nails due to hands that sweat a lot, which require additional treatments and can affect the duration of the enamel.

    Advice: Go to your nail salon for a nail diagnosis to choose the best nail polish and appropriate treatment.
  • 5) Can I do it at home?

    Of course. If you are handy and have a suitable drying lamp, you can do a semi-permanent manicure in 1 hour. However, in a beauty salon it will always look better on you, you will have a greater variety of colors to choose from and you will give yourself a little time every 15 days, which you can make more pleasant with SPA finishes that exfoliate and nourish your skin with a pleasant massage.

    Advice: Be very careful with imitations of semi-permanent nail polish brands on the internet. There are many products that are sold as Shellac that are not authentic and can not only not provide the desired effect but also harm the health of our nails. In the case of CND's Shellac, the products have a serial code engraved on the bottom of the bottle and usually cost no less than 10 euros. Schedule a beauty center that uses them to help you with bitten, dehydrated, brittle or fungus nails.
  • 6) After a while it can be removed by tearing it off like a sticker. Does something happen if I do?

    Yes, when removing the enamel you can remove layers of the nail and make it weaker. When done correctly, soaking the nails in lukewarm water first so that the polish comes off the nail more easily, and leaving the remover liquid on for 15 minutes, prevents the nail from weakening. Some people take them off for entertainment when they are no longer well maintained, but we must try to get rid of this habit.

    Advice: always use a remover of the nail polish brand you carry; It is the one that is thought to act on your materials.
  • 7) Is it advisable to give your nails a break from polish every once in a while?

    There are those who say that it is always good, or who say that with the use of good products it is absolutely not necessary, but in reality it depends on each case. For example, if we have a tendency to bite our nails or do a lot of work with our hands, it may be worse to give the nails a rest and expose them to breakage or dryness than to wear a well-maintained semi-permanent manicure. On the other hand, if we are careful with our hands, we can alternate semi-permanent manicures with manicures with normal enamel, or even manicures without enamel.

    Advice: If you have a tendency to bite your nails or they break easily, be sure to visit your beauty salon to get a manicure, even if you give semi-permanent nail polish a rest. This will keep them healthy.

Links of interest: