When it comes to nail care, we’ve been slowly learning more and more that it takes the right type of beauty treatment to have healthy nails. I’ve done a lot to my nails over the years, including (gasp) acrylics in my college days. Thankfully, that dark period of my life is over and I’ve been rocking a more natural look.
I’ve always struggled with nail care, trying to keep up weekly manicures for me has always been a bit of a chore, and sometimes I would skip and do them myself. Since I’m not a professional, I do a less than stellar job and the cycle of breakage and peeling begins.
Last year on my trip to Spain, I got a gel manicure from my usual nail spot, a run-of-the-mill salon that doesn’t do anything special aside from running you in and running you out. It’s essentially a nail factory where no real attention to detail or personal care is taken into account. You know the type, the nail salons that are so busy that you feel like you’re just another piece in their revolving-door puzzle. More often than not, I’ve left disappointed due to the poor craftsmanship and effort that was put into my manicure. They were too worried about bringing in the next client and not really putting in their all to make sure I was happy. It feels rushed, impersonal and sometimes I was angry with myself for continuing to go to these places. After this particular time, when I got gel, my nails were so destroyed, brittle and thin that it took me about nine months to revive them. It was a real struggle.
This made me wonder, how healthy are these places? Am I getting clean tools? Are the products they use right for my nails and how are the chemicals affecting my overall health? There have been numerous articles warning women of the dangers of gel manicures and UV lights, yet we do not listen, and continue to go and get our tips polished.
Living in Westchester County, there aren’t many options for nail salons that are worth it, but thankfully I had the opportunity to stumble upon Brushed Up, who recently opened in White Plains and I must say, I’m in love.
I went in for my usual gel mani before my annual trip to Spain and Natasha, the owner, was more than accommodating and most of all worked with me on a design that I loved! Besides the personal attention and the obvious way in which she was gentle with my nails and cuticles, the overall result after taking the gel off was that my nails were not damaged like they were just a year before and after doing what seems to be the exact same thing!
The thing is, that it wasn’t the same type of gel manicure and that’s why the end results after removing the gel were so different. Brushed Up is a non-toxic Nail Art Studio that stands behind a natural nail care mission. As stated on their website:
“Our studio specializes in natural nail care and offers only toxin-free nail polish, as well as 5-free gel polish. We are committed to using non-toxic and 100% natural products throughout our services and sanitation.”
On my second visit to the studio, which by the way is the cutest little space you’ve ever seen, Natasha carefully removed the gel with an orange-wood stick. This technique allows for the nails not to be damaged with stainless steel tools other manicurists have used in the past. Most often these tools are used in order to speed up the process and essentially take their next client right away without delay.
This time I opted for a regular manicure to allow for some breathing time for my nails; during which we chatted and I somehow decided to give myself a makeover and try an oval shape instead of my usual square look. The studio boasts a wall with different styles of nail shapes that are displayed by a hand-painted guide, (which is gorgeous) and that was my inspiration for the change.
I’m currently typing this with oval yellow neon nails and I feel fancy. I’m already shifting through the Brushed Up Instagram account checking for inspiration for my next mani and you should too. I no longer feel like nail care is a chore, it’s fun and part of an overall wellness routine.