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I can distinctly remember the moment I became obsessed with nail polish. I was nine years old and had just spent my hard earned pocket money (well, the £2 I’d made begrudgingly emptying the dishwasher several times that week) on the most revolting nail polish – it was not far from the pale blue shade of Blu-Tac and had cost 99p from Cheapjacks, the local pound shop. I’d probably also bought a copy of Shout magazine with some posters of Paul Nichols in it too, as you did back in 1995, but I can very clearly remember thinking “Man, I am so grown up now!”
I promptly went home and very badly painted my nails, and then spent the rest of the weekend showing anyone who’d listen. When it came to Sunday night I was heartbroken to have to take it off for school, but from that moment on I’ve always loved having nicely painted nails. The only problem was, I wasn’t very good at it, and I chewed my nails like I hadn’t been fed in a week. Until I discovered Liz, and the wonders of Shellac!
I first had Shellac done as a bit of a fluke. My Mum had bought me a voucher to use at her local salon, so I booked in to try Shellac nail polish. At that point my finger nails looked like little boys’ nails, and were pretty shocking. After an hour with Liz, they were still stubby and short, but they looked ace! True to form I’d chosen a bright pink glittery polish, and one month later, they were still looking great and guess what – they’d bloody grown! So I went back and had them done again. Now, two years later, I’m completely hooked!
If you’ve never heard of Shellac before it is, in short, ‘chip proof’ nail varnish. The polish itself is a gel, which when applied is then ‘set’ using a UV light. The result is a super shiny, super strong semi-permanent polish which can last for up to four weeks. With the right maintenance (e.g not peeling them off when they start to grow out, as I did once and immediately regretted) Shellac can really strengthen your nails, so if like me you’ve always struggled to grow your nails this might be your new secret weapon!
So where to go to get it done? Most hairdressers and beauty salons will offer Shellac, but having learnt from experience a lot of them are overpriced and quite honestly, not great. Which is why I follow Liz, nail technician extraordinaire, wherever she goes!
Liz now owns Beautique, a lovely salon in Nailsea, just outside of Bristol. Going in to see her isn’t just a case of having my nails done and making small talk. Along with her fellow nail tech Zoe, Liz and the team at Beautique have created an atmosphere which makes you feel instantly at ease, almost like going for a cup of tea and a catch up with your mates. You never know what’s going to be on the discussion agenda when you arrive, but you can guarantee you’ll leave wetting yourself with laughter – there really never is a dull moment in that salon!
Beautique offers basic Shellac polish, but they also offer all manner of nail art. Whether you’re partial to a bit of glitter like me, or you’re after diamante, studs, transfers, hand painted nail art or even acrylics you can get it there and what’s more you can get it for an absolute steal. In the past I’ve paid in excess of £30 for Shellac, but prices start at just £20 at Beautique.
So if, like me, you’ve always fancied having lovely nails but have never had the patience to do it yourself don’t bother – let Liz and the team and Beautique do it for you! You can book your appointment by giving them a bell on 01275 880588 and I promise you’ll never worry about painting your own nails again!