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Is Shellac nail polish harmful to your nails?

Every time I go get a manicure, the ladies tell me how good Shellac Nail Polish is, and how it lasts 2 to 3 weeks. I always say no, because I am worried that it will weaken (my already frail) nails.
Has anyone tried it? If so, what was your experience? Is it worth it?

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4 Replies

2 years, 2 months ago
Re: Is Shellac nail polish harmful to your nails?

Hi, SophieT! I'm the executive editor of Total Beauty and want to chime in here. I've been "Shellac'd" and have to say, I LOVED it! I had an amazing manicure for three weeks (yes, THREE weeks), and my nails even grew a lot. When I had the polish taken off, my nails were fine -- no different than before I had the Shellac manicure. Here are a couple nail tips I'd keep in mind if you decide to go for it:

1. Make sure you go to a salon that's certified to do CND Shellac manicures. This company puts a lot of time and dollars into research and development, and they waited years to make sure the formula was safe for nails before launching it. Also, when the time comes for the polish to come off, go to a CND-certified salon for removal. 

2. I'd ask your manicurist for her honest opinion about whether or not your nails are strong enough for a Shellac mani. The manicurist who took off my Shellac polish told me she often suggests women with weak nails wait a little while until they get the Shellac mani, and she gives them a prescription for how to make nails stronger.

3. If you do get "Shellac'd" make sure to keep your nails super hydrated. Every day, polish on CND's Solar Oil on top of your polish. It actually seeps through the Shellac polish and helps keep your nails healthy and moisturized. 

I hope this helps, and please fill us in on your experience!

Meghan Rabbitt

2 years, 2 months ago
Shellac info

Hi Sophie,

I do PR for CND and I second everything that Meghan described about Shellac. It will not weaken your nails as long as your nail professional applies and removes it properly.  What weakens the nails is filing the surface or peeling off your Shellac which peels off layers of your natural nail with it. Shellac is 3-free -- no formaldehyde, DBP or toluene. It's also hypo-allergenic.

Some women prefer to remove Shellac themselves instead of going to the salon. if so, ask your salon for a Shellac Remover Wrap 10-pack and pick up a bottle of acetone at the drug store. When Shellac is removed properly, it comes off in 10 minutes and leaves nails as healthy as they started. It's super easy to get off. You wrap the little sleeves around your nail. The acetone penetrates through the Shellac and it will flake into little pieces that come off in the sleeves. Any remainder is pushed off with an orangewood stick -- no filing needed like gels.

Shellac Power Polish lasts 14-days and is great for women who want a no-touch-up-needed between their mani appointments. If you like to change your nail color every day or so, regular polish is a better option for you.

You can see videos and gets tons of info about the formula at www.cnd.com. Hope that helps.

2 years, 2 months ago
Re: Is Shellac nail polish harmful to your nails?

Thank you everyone for your great advice! I really appreciate it!


2 years, 2 months ago
Shellac nail polish

I would Google shellac nail polish to find out more about it, and to make sure it doesn't have bad ingredients like toluene, formaldehyde or DBP. These are all known carcinogens. The brand Butter London even says on the bottle that it does not contain thes carcinogens. I always take that polish to my manicurist for the reason above, but also I am guaranteed no one else has used it, they have not thinned it out because of shelf life, and because I can always do my own touch ups. Hope this helps. Carole VonAllten

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