No, you don't have to go to a nail salon for a gorgeous gel manicure. As long as you have a bottle of gel polish and a UV curing lamp, you can just as easily do your own at home (and save tons of money in the long run). But not all gel polishes are created equally, which is where this guide to the best gel polishes comes in. Not only do they come in a wide range of colors, but these pro-quality polishes produce a high-shine finish and should last for at least two weeks without chipping.
But before you get to shopping, it's important to familiarize yourself with some gel manicure best practices. First, before curing your nails, make sure to apply sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher to your hands to protect them from the UV lamp's ultraviolet radiation. (Alternatively, you could wear dark gloves without fingertips.) When you're ready to remove your polish, don't pick at it — that can really damage your nails. Instead, soak cotton balls with an acetone-based nail polish remover, place those on your fingers, wrap your fingers in aluminum foil (or specialized clips like these), and wait about 15 minutes. You should then find it easy to gently push your polish off. When you're done, follow up with a cuticle oil or nail moisturizer to replenish hydration.
Now that you know what you're doing, scroll on to shop the best gel nail polishes — and gel-effect polishes, if you're looking for something less high maintenance — that you can buy on Amazon.
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