All I Want is Pretty, Strong Nails

When I was younger, my nails were super strong, hardly ever broke and were really easy to maintain. Deep nail beds and tough as … well, nails.

Then, I turned 40 and it seemed that my nails got more and more brittle – easily chipped and peeled – all those things I didn’t have to worry about before. And nothing worked to make them stronger, so I clipped them short and looked more granola-girl for a few years until I discovered gel polish.

Now, let me tell you – this stuff is AMAZING. It’s super strong, stays shiny and chip-free for WEEKs on end until it grows out so far you have to take it off and re-do the job. I’ve taken my gel polish rock climbing, I’ve replaced windows, cleared landscaping, everything and it doesn’t break or chip.

Love this stuff.

So, what’s the problem?

I miss my nail tech in Colorado.

She was funny, down-to-earth, and friendly. She and I would chat about little things, my kids, her pets, my pets, our significant others and whoosh, my nails were done. You wouldn’t think it would be so hard to find a suitable replacement, but boy have I had every kind of trouble with this you can imagine. Let me take you on my journey.

Asian nail place #1

So, this nail place was nice. I took the girls here when they visited but they didn’t speak English too well. The decor was outdated and when we bought this house, it was a tad far away.

Next stop, Ulta

Now, Ulta is where I buy the makeup I don’t buy at – they’re very cool. They take stuff back if you hate it, even if you opened it and used it. They have a nice rewards system and they have the big bottles of conditioner on sale once a year so I stock up.

They only use OPI gel polish and while I love OPI colors and have a bucket of my favorites it has to be applied exactly correctly or it will chip. I usually talk them into 3 layers and that seems to do the trick at keeping the chipping at bay.

Other problem? The nail tech I always get is the chattiest 20-something I’ve ever known and I just can’t relate. I do not want to talk all the time, but wow she can chat through the entire hour without batting an eye.

Asian nail place #2

Now, this place is very close and everyone is entirely friendly there, but they all seemed to be named Lily or Anna. I don’t know why but when I ask their name, they all say Lily or Anna. I’ve counted them and there are plenty of Lily’s and Anna’s in there. They do a very good job. Speedy and thorough and the price is good.

The products, I’m not so sure about because they don’t have typical labels and that makes me a tad nervous but so far, so good. Still, it’s annoying that they speak their language the entire time after getting me settled and greeting me, so I feel a little invisible. That’s fine when you have a friend along and you want to chat, but it reminds me of that scene in ‘Because I Said So‘ where the girls and their mom visit a Korean massage place and they are all talking but the massage therapists are having their own discussion at the same time … you know what I mean.

So, products I like and a nail tech that talks me to death or invisibility and products I’m a little unsure of, which would you choose?

gel nail polish

fourteenergirl Written by:

A mother, sister, wife, and daughter who writes, knits, hikes, and practices yoga on the west coast. Loves a zippy chardonnay or a tart margarita!

One Comment

  1. ellen lukasik
    June 11, 2014

    Ok, so I’m going to ad to your delima. I’ve been getting my nails done professionally for about 20 years. Same reasons you stated. I’ve always been cautioned about going to the Asian places. Don’t know if that’s propaganda from the mainstream salons or not. I’d still be tempted to stick with the chatty one. I know it’s annoying but you know that the products are safe. Maybe tell her you’re tired and just don’t want to chat, occasionally?????

    Keep me informed, please.


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