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Stuck On New Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips

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I was initially skeptical about the efficacy of the new Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips — not because of any hyperbolic marketing claims but, rather, because of my disappointing experience with the Sephora by O.P.I Chic Prints nail appliqués, which were also nail strips with funky prints that, when pressed onto nails, would theoretically look as if they were melted onto nails for a Minx-like effect. Sadly, the Sephora by O.P.I Chic Prints frayed easily (we’re talking a single dish washing session) and chipped even faster (opening an envelope seemed like a hazardous operation), so that a full “manicure” lasted 2-3 days tops. After that debacle, I was inclined to scoff at any products offering similar results. But, I’m woman enough to admit my mistakes — and, ladies, when it comes to the Sally Hansen Salon Effects polish strips, I’ll admit my leeriness was completely unwarranted. These stick-on strips adhere to nails easily and make your hands look like they’d been wallpapered with the utmost precision (in the best, most modern way, of course), plus your jaunty manicure will last over a week, making it a bargain-priced alternative to Minx (one box of Sally Hansen Salon Effects nail strips retails for $9.99 at drugstores and at Ulta.com, while a Minx application can cost about $50-$60).

Each boxed kit contains a miniature nail file/buffer, a double-sided wooden cuticle stick (one pointed and one flat and angled), step-by-step instructions, and 16 nail polish strips in various sizes so as to fit an array of nail types. To apply, you need to start off with clean and dry nails so that the DBP-, toluene-, and formaldehyde-free color on the strips can fully adhere to nail plates. For best results, you should also buff nails using the light pink side of the mini nail file and push cuticles back ever so slightly. Next, you should sift through the box until you find the polish strip that best fits the fingernail on which you wish to apply it. Now here comes the tricky part: you’ll want to peel the white plastic film off the bottom of the nail strip and place the polish strip on your nail, aligning the rounded bottom ridge with the base of your cuticle line. Once the strip is aligned, peel off the clear top layer covering the polish strip. Next, press the strip onto the nail, gently running the flat part of the cuticle stick over your nails to remover any air bubbles, tuck the sides in, and create a smooth surface. Any excess material will hang past the tips of nails, so you’ll want to fold it over, pressing down as you do so. To remove the excess, file the bottom of nails using the light pink side of the nail file (the excess will literally fall right off), then finish buffing the tips until the ridges look smooth and even.

The Sally Hansen Salon Effects Nail Polish Strips are available in shiny neon shades (like Red-y for Trouble, a Fiat-appropriate red, or Squeezed!, a fluorescent yellow), glitzy metallics (like Blue Ice, a sparkling teal and aquamarine design, or Bling It On, a violet-tinged rose with purple, magenta, and fuchsia sparkle), and several cheeky patterns (among them Kitty Kitty, a leopard print design; Check It Out, a black-and-white houndstooth pattern; Girl Flower, a ’60s-esque, hippy-flavored floral motif;  Booty Camp, a pink camo print; and Wild Child, a zebra print motif).

Not only will these designs win you plenty of curious stares, but you’ll be impressed with their longevity. I washed dishes, did laundry, unsealed boxes, scrubbed floors, dusted cabinets, and performed all sorts of odious housework, and was amazed at the fact that my nails remain unscathed. I figured there had to be a catch — were these strips suffocating my nails? Would I get some kind of fungus? Would my nails be debilitated to the point of breaking? Amazingly, once I removed the strips (which can easily be done by sweeping a cotton ball soaked in nail polish remover over nails), my nails looked just as healthy and strong as they did prior to the strips’ application. The Salon Effects strips, then, have lasted me longer than most regular manicures, but they’re way more fun!

Below, check out some photos showing what the Girl Flower, Kitty Kitty, and Check It Out patterns look like on nails.

 

Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips in Girl Flower:

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Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips in Kitty Kitty:

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Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips in Check It Out:

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