Are Shellac Manicures Bad for Your Nails?

There are only a handful of beauty routines that are on my must-do at all costs list, these include; threading my eyebrows, dyeing my grey roots, and painting my nails. Black hair, on point eyebrows, and polished nails make me feel pulled together and ready to take on the world. Are Shellac Manicures Bad for Your Nails{Sparkle Shellac and chai – really, can it get any better than that?}

The only issue is, I wash A LOT of dishes because my job involves recipe development and I don’t have a dishwasher. So until November of last year I was changing  my polish 3 to 4 times a week! This is partially because I love painted nails, and partially because my hands appear in product shots for clients quite often. So between the time it was taking, and the amount of polish remover I was using {hello chemicals}, I decided to give shellac manicures a try. 

Now that I’ve been having my nails done about 5 months – with the exception of a 2 week break in January, I’m ready to share my honest feedback on the process. There is no simple answer to the question ‘are shellac manicures bad for your nails?’ After my own experience and a fair bit of research, I would say; if you have healthy and strong nails to start with and no infections on your cuticles, they are a great investment. are shellac nails bad for you?{I once got this white/beige manicure, it was kind of boring. The pink below is much more me!}pink

I can easily go 2-3 weeks between treatments depending what type of events and work commitments I have. In the picture above my manicure is 10 days old. The polish never chips, fades, or looses it’s shine, the only reason I go back is because it starts to grow out. I love all the colour options {there are even sparkles} and only takes about 30 minutes for the whole process. What’s not to love? 

If you are considering a shellac manicure, here are a few tips for keeping your manicure and your nail beds looking good:

? Apply cuticle oil to your nails twice a day. I have a bottle sitting on the bathroom counter and do it when I brush my teeth in the morning and at night. This will keep your nails healthy under the shellac.

? Don’t use haldi {turmeric} without wearing gloves. I speak from experience, that stuff can stain anything, and change the colour of your polish!

? Pick a colour that only requires two coats. I find that if a colour needs three coats it starts to peel up from the sides and doesn’t look as nice. 

? Shellac polish needs to be removed in the right way or it will damage your nail bed. My girl {Lily from TD Nails in Surrey} buffs the top layer away and then wraps each nail in foil. If your nail tech is using a grinder, or soaking your fingers in a bowl of acetone, run to a new nail salon pronto!

? Pricing for Shellac manicures varies greatly. There are places that charge $40+, my local salon charges about $22 per service, including removal. Ask your friends for recommendations, pricier isn’t always better.

As a busy mama and a girl who often finds herself as a nail model; I love me a good shellac manicure and don’t think I’ll quit them any time soon. 

Have you had a Shellac manicure before? What did you think? Leave a comment and let me know!


  1. March 30, 2015 / 8:24 am

    I love shellac. I’ve currently had french on for almost a month with no chipping or peeling. I just fix the bottom up with top coat as it has started to grow out. That involves dealing with a 6 year old, going through labour and caring for a newborn. If my nails can withstand that with no problem, I’m down. Shellac lasts for months on toes too.

  2. March 30, 2015 / 8:36 am

    Love shellac! Too bad it’s $50+ here in Miami…which is why I only get it done when I’m travelling for work. Can’t believe your salon only charges $22!! What a steal 🙂

  3. April 8, 2020 / 10:19 am

    I couldn’t resist commenting. Perfectly written.

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