Some of us find great longevity with gel polish like the classic Shellac, but for others, gel just doesn’t seem to stay as well over time–or if our nails have a rough week of manual labor, they chip faster than the two week retention we’re used to. Structured Gel does not have the harsh fumes associated with acrylic, and some say it’s stronger. Also known as bottled builder, many nail companies are adapting this newer technology to their own product offerings. Why do we think it’s amazing for the majority of our guests?
- Flexibility. At Shimmer, we think structured gel is more flexible than acrylic, which makes it prone to breaking less. Your nail’s natural apex helps it bounce back from damage, and for our guests with flat nails, we can maintain a higher arch or apex with our fills, therefore increasing flexibility. The secret? It’s in the rubber base.
- Fume-free. Structured Gel is versatile, and can be used with any of our gel colors–from color change to glow in the dark. It is not associated with harsh fumes, which is a plus for both our guests and staff.
- Aid to the nail-growing process. Let’s face it, instant length acrylic tips aren’t often as strong as we’d like until many fills later. By growing nails with structured gel, we increase retention and reduce breakage by allowing your natural nail to grow out. This reduces tension on stress points that are associated with tips.
Q: What can I expect during the process?
A: During the application process the nail is lightly buffed and dehydrated for prep. Structured Gel is applied by use of UV/LED lamps, like regular gel.
Q: How long does it last?
A: In our experience, structured gel is best worn when filled every 3 weeks on average. Remember, when polish grows out too much (usually 4 weeks and beyond), the balance of the apex is thrown off, which can lead to breakage and chipping.
Q: What if it grows too fast?
A: Structured gel is fillable because it self-seals, unlike any other gel! Your nail technician will not even have to cap the free edge–which we will admit, we weren’t used to! Usually, We want to avoid filing cured UV Gel. Structured Gel is different, and if your nails get too long before your fill, you can file it down on the free edge and maintain the integrity and shape. Do not ever clip or cut any gel or structured gel, because the base underneath can crack from the pressure.
Q: What is removal like?
A: Removal of structured gel is a delicate process that only nail technicians trained in the product line should complete. Removal may take 45 minutes- 1:30, depending on when it was last applied. We don’t budge structured gel off of a nail until it is ready to come off my use of light mechanical and chemical (acetone) processing.
A: I’m allergic to latex? Can I still get Structured Gel?
Q: Latex molecules may be different than rubber molecules. For severe allergies, we recommend your allergist or medical profession reviews the MDS associated with the specific brand we use and sign off on application. Call our front desk to request ingredient information!
Q: It’s hard for me to ask this, but my hands sweat a lot. Will that change the retention or application?
A: We’re happy you asked! We have had guests with self-described clamy hands, and guests who are in water all day achieve full 3-week retention. We recommend you try it and see how it works for you!
Visit our booking link on Vagaro to plan your first Structured Gel visit!
Additional information about soaking off previously applied acrylic or dip: Keeping the integrity of your natural nails is our goal when soaking off another spa’s acrylic. Because of this delicate process, an acrylic soak-off may take up to 2 1/2 hours. If you are unsure of the products used on your nails, please call us to consult so we can help deduce which soak-off process we will be using at your reservation.