My nails are so lame. For real! No matter how many stupid vitamins (I’m looking at you, fish oil, Vitamin D, those “women’s only” pink ones my mom bought me), or how much protein I eat, or whatever, my nails split and break like little pussies. I could bathe them in OPI Nail Envy for weeks and still, they’d just bend and snap. And I’m sick of it! I want long nails! Long nails are sooo glamorous. But I’m not into the idea of getting acrylics quite yet, because that’s extra maintenance. I like to go thrifting on my days off, OK?
So before my trip to LA (take me back! I love you LA!) I bought two “bottles” of imPRESS Salon Manicure press-on nails. My experience with press-on nails dates back to, oh, 1997 and sleepovers with my girlfriends. I’d read favorable reviews of the impress line and was super into the fact that they came in a “short” length. I work retail and I text a lot, so yeah, talons = no. I purchased the hot pink style and the neon/leopard “By My Side,” which was just tacky and awesome enough for a vacation mani. (Basic colors are about $7, designs $8.) imPRESS nails are housed in clear plastic “nail polish” bottles, which is not only cute but also handy, since they’re not rattling around in a box trying to get loose and spill all over your car.
I’ve been painting my nails since age seven, so I’m pretty good at that. I can do those Sally Hansen nail stickers in my sleep. That’s about the extent of my manicure skills, though. I leave the crazy stuff (read: cuticles) to the pros. However, with imPRESS all you gotta do is fit the nails to yours – they come in assorted sizes, 24 to a pack. Peel off the little sticker on the back, press firmly on your nail beginning at the center and moving to the edges. Done! It is INSANELY easy. Use the smallest size nail possible and do your thumbs last. Don’t get them wet for a half hour or so to let that glue really set. The adhesive is gentle, so when you remove them (they claim to last 7-10 days) your natural nails won’t be ruined.
At first I was like, “Whoaaaa my nails are so long! My hands look like my mom’s!” The “short length” is a little misleading if you’re not used to faux nails, because these babies are long. You can file/cut them down to suit your aesthetics, though. It was strange using my phone, opening stuff, putting in contacts. (That still feels weird and scary, to be honest.) The cats were into my new claws because they were on the receiving end of some primo scratch action. I got compliments at the airport from a group of Southern men in blaze orange tees and they were a great topic of conversation for the person in the seat next to mine. (Need I mention I obviously used the neon leopard style first?)
Compliments aside, these things STAYED ON. I wore them five days straight and only lost two nails; a swipe of actual nail glue borrowed from a friend anchored those on. (In fairness, they were my pointer fingers, which definitely get the most wear and tear.) I did dishes, took a shower, ran around LA … they didn’t budge. They would’ve lasted longer had I not gotten bored and peeled them off.
I’m wearing the dark red, Tweetheart, right now and I am OBSESSED with my nails. They’re so shiny! And long! Lana del Rey-lite, I think. imPRESS, I’m in love with you. Now please help me find that elusive red-orange shade!