As a mum of 3 with a baby, just getting ready to go back to work, I'm about as low maintenance as they come. If I get time to have a shower and stick a 5-minute conditioning treatment in my hair, I feel thoroughly pampered ! So I certainly haven't got time (or money) to waste keeping my nails beautiful. Even though I haven't bitten my nails since I was a kid, once one of my nails gets snagged (a common occurrence), I rarely have time to go and find an emery board so I invariably end up chewing the annoying bits off until I have one nail much shorter than the others. Not a good look ! Not to mention nail varnish that gets chipped and peels off within hours because of the amount of time my hands spend in various detergents.
The So Real and So Natural nails are absolutely ideal for people who don't particularly like false nails, because as the name suggests, they look like your real nails - just prettier and well looked-after ! They're really easy to apply and are pretty hardwearing (unless you're planning any rock-climbing or, more likely, heavy-duty floor scrubbing !). If you look really closely, you can see they're false but nobody except you will notice. They only take minutes to put on (slightly longer to take off, but they do come off eventually !) and they can really give you a professional, groomed look. Everything you need is included - 24 nails in a variety of sizes (12 to be exact, so you're sure to find the right size), glue, a cuticle stick and a nail file/buffer. Plus instructions, but don't worry, they're dead easy to apply.
If you want something extra special for the Christmas party season, you should try the Couture range. They're the same as the So Real and So Natural ranges but they have lovely glittery ends, like a posh French manicure that you'd pay a fortune for in a nail bar. They're really pretty and funky and would be a great finishing touch for a party outfit. If you're cack-handed like me, you'll also get a much more professional-looking end result than if you try to apply nail varnish yourself !
If you have any young girlie-girls in your house, they will absolutely adore the Bedazzle nail art stickers. They come in a whole range of shapes and colours, and there are even sparkly rhinestone ones for the extra wow-factor. They are small enough to fit on the tiniest of nails - even 4-year-old Juliette could join in and have her nails made over.
As you can see, the girls absolutely loved them and showed off their hands to anybody who would look, even at the bus stop ! Unfortunately they don't stay on for very long - especially if you keep washing your hands - but we couldn't find any clear nail polish in the house and it does say on the pack that you can use a top coat to make them longer-lasting. Next time, I'll try using some coloured nail varnish underneath, to make them stand out a bit more, plus a clear top-coat to help them stick on for longer.
If you want a temporary makeover for a special night out or a special treat for a girlie pamper session, all of these Nailene products fit the bill. Even if you've never tried fake nails before (like me), you'll find them really easy to put on and get a good result. And they're cheap enough for your daughters to spend their pocket money on when they start getting interested in hair and make up too. I'm using them to try to convince Sophie to stop biting her nails too - so far it seems to be working !
star rating : 4.5/5
RRP : $3.99 - $5.99
for more information, go to http://www.nailene.com/