Saturday, January 1, 2011
My Experience with the OPI Axxium Soak-Off Gel Manicure!
(Note: Due to the flash on my camera phone, the color of the Hawaiian Orchid Soak-Off Gel Lacquer looks much brighter than how it looks in real life! It is actually quite sheer in person and is a great color to use for a french manicure. I used to be the french manicure queen, we're talking a year or two of straight french manicures, so I would say you should put your french manicure faith in my hands!)
I will be honest, I have fairly long natural nails (minus the one or two that break from time to time hence the extension on my index finger and the wrap on my thumb that I so did not capture in this picture, good job Jenn!) and I can get away with stretching a regular manicure for a good 7 days without it chipping if I apply top coat every night. Nonetheless, I was intrigued by the OPI Axxium Soak-Off Gel Manicure since it isn't supposed to chip for 14 days and there is no dry time with this manicure! No dry time? SOLD!
So, I went to my local salon at around 6:30 in the morning (yes, 6:30, my nail salon is open from 6 AM until Midnight 6 days a week, oh the perks of living in New York) on Tuesday, December 21st and tried to pay attention as best as I could with latte in hand. First, the nail technician did a basic manicure, she filed my nails to make sure that they were even and cleaned underneath the nail. After, she applied a bond to my nails, which apparently helps the Axxium adhere better. Next, she applied a gel base to two fingernails at a time and then directed me to put my hand under the UV light so the base could be "cured." The curing process basically hardened the base so it would be ready for the first coat of color. The technician then applied the first coat of Hawaiian Orchid, and again after two fingernails had the first coat of color on, she instructed me to place my hand under the UV light. As my one hand was under the UV light she began applying the first coat to my other hand. After two coats of Hawaiian Orchid, she then applied the OPI Axxium Soak Off Gel Sealer, which is like a top coat for your basic manicure. Then, it was off to the UV light one last time. Afterwards, she sprayed the OPI Nail Antiseptic Solution onto my fingernails and wiped it off with a nail wipe, and the nails were completely dry! Lastly, cuticle oil was applied to my cuticles and they were pushed back. If you look to the image above, you will see the final result!
I would suggest you continue reading if you want to see how my OPI Axxium Soak-Off Gel Manicure lasted!
I had numerous mini panic-attacks at work that Tuesday since I accidentally banged both of my hands into drawers on quite a few occasions. However, as you can see from this picture above on Wednesday, December 22nd, I was dent free! (In the loser's corner we have drawers!) Now, onto the unfortunate moment when a chip did occur.
It was a cold, dark night, on Thursday, December 30th, and my heart sank a little bit when I heard the gel chip off as I was getting into my car after a long evening at work, but there it was, a chip on my index finger. It was upsetting to see that the manicure couldn't make it to day 14, (it really lasted 10 days if I include the 21st) but I was still impressed overall. Fortunately, since Hawaiian Orchid is so light, it isn't entirely noticeable. The image above was taken on December 31st, and if you look closely you can see that a little bit of the color is chipped off the index finger.
Final Verdict: This manicure was close to four times the price of a basic manicure at my salon; typically I shell out around $7 for a basic manicure and I paid $25 for the OPI Axxium Gel Soak-Off Manicure. The nail salon that my best friend goes to currently charges $20, which is the best price I have heard yet, since this manicure can cost upwards of $50 from the research I've conducted. (Who knows, depending on what city you live in it could even be more!) I think for $25 I will definitely continue to get this manicure, but since the color selection isn't that extensive, just yet, I will definitely go back and forth between the OPI Axxium Soak-Off Gel Manicure, and my basic manicure. I may even go back to french, just not two years in a row!
Have you ever had an OPI Axxium Soak-Off Gel Manicure? What color did your choose? What was your experience like?
FTC: I am in no way affiliated with OPI, nor am I being compensated for my review. This post in its entirety is simply an honest review of my experience with the above-mentioned product.
Love, Lipgloss, & Lattes