The Nailene Ultra Quick Brush-On Gel Kit is a patented 'mistake proof' system for applying salon-style long-lasting gel tips at home. The kit contains 48 nail tips in both 'French' and 'Natural' styles, as well as the three bottles needed to complete a gel overlay, a coarse rectangular file and cuticle stick for preparation and infills. The Nailene gel formula offers no fancy benefits to the nail other than aesthetics and durability, but promises 'naturally beautiful looking nails' with 'the strength of acrylics'. It's also free from formaldehyde, an ingredient many (including myself) look to avoid due to its irritant properties.
Preparation is very straightforward - all that's needed is for the cuticles to be pushed back and the nails to be gently buffed in order to create a surface for the gel to stick to. Application of the tips is the quickest part of the process as a small amount of Gel Overlay is brushed onto the back of the tip above a small ridge, then they are simply pressed onto the nail and dry in place within the seconds. The part that takes the longest for me is sizing and shaping the tips to my nail; even though there are 12 sizes for each style, my nails seem to be particularly narrow so a bit of time is needed to get the perfect fit and shape I'm happy with.
The final part of the application process is to create the strong shiny gel layer that gives these nails their longevity. This couldn't be simpler, as there are no powders or lamps to faff about with; the clear Gel Overlay is brushed onto the nail like polish, then the clear Gel Activator is applied over the top while the overlay is still wet. The brush is dipped into the Brush Cleaner before repeating the process and the nails are hard and dry within a couple of minutes. The results are quite impressive: the tips (in particular the French style which is my favourite of the two) look smart but not over the top, the join between nail and tip is barely visible, plus the finish is glossy and feels solid enough to be durable while allowing a bit of 'give'.
In terms of longevity, the Nailene Ultra Quick Kit has fared much better for me than many of the other kits I've tried. Even on my thin and weak nails, these gel tips last around 10 days without a crack or chip, and even when one does crack (if I've been careless and used my nails as tools too often) it's such a small line that it's barely noticeable. I find I need to be quite on the ball with filling in growth at the bottom of the nail to prevent chipping and water seeping under the gel overlay, which can damage the integrity of the bond to the nail and cause the tips to ping off, but with good care these last almost three weeks before needing to be soaked off with an acetone-based polish remover. I've also found this manicure has allowed my natural nails to grow stronger and thicker underneath the artificial tips, as they're not subjected to the everyday knocks that cause them to bend and peel at the top, so when I take a break between removing the gel tips and applying a new set my nails look generally much healthier.
I'm really impressed with this kit and Nailene seems to be proud of it too. Not only do they have two patents on this system, but they also offer a satisfaction guarantee: something which is rare to find on a beauty product and shows they really have faith in their formulas. I'm already on my third box; I would definitely recommend the Nailene Ultra Quick Brush-On Gel Kit for its long wearing results, glossy finish and affordable price tag.
The Nailene Ultra Quick Brush-On Gel Kit is available from Boots and Superdrug priced at £13.49
Written by Kirsty Paterson