With baited breath and heavy anticipation I have been waiting for the newest at-home, gel manicure system to reach one of my local beauty stores. Let me just say the two-step Essie Gel Couture system has not only only lived up to the hype but it has been worth the wait! I am here for it! I don't know where to begin - let me just ramble on.
Of course there are gorgeous colors in the Essie Gel Couture system very similar to the colors you know and love in the regular Essie line. The names are very chic, though that has nothing to do with how amazing this system is. After the color selection, the next thing that impressed me was the brush. Sounds pretty basic but I have dealt with some "struggle brushes" that made it difficult to stick to a three-stroke nail application (down the middle, left side, right side). The other brushes have been too narrow, too stiff or far too wide. This two-step system has a brush that grips the nail bed perfectly and coats so smoothly. It is the perfect width and the tip rounds nicely.
Two coats of color and one shiny coat of top coat - no UV lamp required - and I had an impressive, salon worthy manicure. I was quite pleased with myself and was already thinking about how this Essie Gel Couture system was going to be a game changer for me. More colors will definitely be added to my stash!
I love the look and longevity of traditional gel manicures. What I don't like is the end result - for me any way. Weak, soft and thin nails. I've always prided myself on healthy, strong and easy-to-grow nails. After several months of gel manicures, it took a lot of rehab on my nails to correct the the effects of the acetone soaks, the emery board "smoothing" and the removal process. It was tragic and sad that I paid good money to abuse my nails. I've tried another gel system and hated it. I loved their regular base coat (it's a staple in my collection), so I bought several colors in their gel system without trying one out first. Bad move. Hated the brush and it was a streaky application.
The other great parts about the Essie Gel Couture system is I didn't get my first tiny chip until five days in (very reasonable for my extremely active lifestyle which includes heavy weights/plates, etc at the gym). My nails were also in the exact same healthy condition as pre-application. Major key for me.
If you haven't go for it - the cost is worth the investment. One bottle is the equivalent of at least 5 manicures. So...there's that! *wink* Have you tried it yet? Any great color recommendations? Let me know in the comments.