The pamper session

Shellac at Top To Toe

Another week, another best of beauty blog challenge post. This weeks topic is favourite pamper products and yet again I was left scratching my head, wondering what I  should include. I am not one of these girls that sets aside a night once a week, or once a month to have a little pamper session, I am far too lazy for that. If I am honest, I would rather sit on the couch with a bottle of wine watching Corrie, than sit flicking through magazines waiting for hair masks and face masks to develop . If I had a bath in my house maybe it might be different, but for me pamper sessions don’t really happen at home. However, I am a sucker for treating myself and to me there is no better way to pamper myself, then a trip to the beauticians, where someone else can do the pampering for you.

Top To Toe Aughrim st Dublin 7

My local beauticians is a little gem of a place in Stoneybatter, Dublin, called Top To Toe. Whenever I go in there, I feel like I am being well and truly pampered. The girls go out of their way, from the minute you walk in the door, to make sure you have a really relaxing and pampered experience. They always take their time to chat to you, see how you are and you never feel like you are being squeezed in between appointments . While they offer a wide range of treatments, my ultimate pamper treatment, is the 2 week manicure or as most of us call it Shellac ( even if that is just a brand name). Since I am absolutely brutal at doing my nails, Shellac has been my saviour in feeling lady like for the last few years. I am rarely without it.

Some of the large range of 2 week manicure colours

As someone who can’t keep nail polish on her nails for more than a few hours, never mind a few days, the 2 week manicure has been a god send to me. Top To Toe offer a range of different brands for the 2 week manicure including gelish and CND Shellac. Sometimes I get baffled by the large range of colours, but the girls are always on hand to show me the latest colours and what they think I might like. While I have tried some mad colours over the years, I always love my nails and they really last the 2 weeks if not longer.

previous manicures

So what is the Shellac or a 2 week manicure?  Shellac is a nail friendly solution to gel nails. It is thin coats of polish on your natural nail that takes time to develop under the UV lamp between every coat, with a top coat added at the end for extra shine. It is quick (ish), easy and looks amazing.

However like everything in life there are pros and cons to Shellac. Firstly it gives your nails a chance to grow. Many people think you have to have lovely longs nails to get a manicure, but this is not true. I have gone in with stumps, gotten my stumps shaped and then once the Shellac was on the stumps  grew into fierce talons. Having Shellac on your nails gives them extra strength and stops them breaking as easily.

Secondly, I don’t have to worry about having chipped nails varnish. I mean you could literally hack away at my nails and they won’t budge. Shellac is said to last for 2 weeks, but I have gotten longer out of it at times.

previous manicures

Finally, unlike gel nails, Shellac for the most part won’t damage your nails. If you are getting Shellac on and off every two weeks your nails might dry out a little, but if you use the correct oils, then Shellac allows the oil to penetrate down to the nail bed and stops your nails drying out.

For me the only con to Shellac is removal. If you peal off Shellac yourself, you will damage your nails. As pleasing as it may be, do not peal Shellac off yourself!! You are best off going into the beauticians and getting them  to remove it for you. Or you can do what I do and set up your next appointment for 2 weeks later and get them off and on again.

This weeks shellac

As you can see from all the pictures, myself and Shellac are long time friends.  I highly recommend it, either as a once off treat, or a fortnightly pamper session. Most beauticians offer Shellac now, but if you live anywhere near the Dublin 7 area, or even if you are around town looking to get your nails done, I highly recommend coming out to Stoneybatter and visiting the girls at Top to toe. Not only are they very well priced, but they will do a really good job of your nails too and they are great for the chats. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

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  • Reply
    Robyn Morton
    February 27, 2014 at 7:06 pm

    Who said pampering needs to be at home? Great nails too (all of them)!

    • Reply
      Sinéad K
      February 27, 2014 at 11:03 pm

      Thanks Robyn. Im so bad at doing my own nails

  • Reply
    February 27, 2014 at 7:14 pm

    I’m thinking of going in to get a shellac soon with a voucher I got for a beauty salon. I love that teal colour one you got! I’m obsessed with that colour 🙂

  • Reply
    Sarah B
    February 27, 2014 at 7:37 pm

    I love shellac for special occasions but I hate taking it off! I love the last pic I think I might rob the idea!

  • Reply
    Nurse Fancy Pants
    February 27, 2014 at 7:37 pm

    It’s always nice being pampered by someone else! Love the nails 🙂 x

  • Reply
    Pink Elephant Blog
    February 27, 2014 at 7:49 pm

    I love a nice manicure! Becky & I sometimes treat ourselves to a quick mani in town 🙂

    alex @

  • Reply
    Cathy Wilson
    February 27, 2014 at 8:10 pm

    Oh wow loved this post! So different from all the rest and something I would have never thought of, go you lady! Love all your nails, just want them all x

  • Reply
    Eli Dumas
    February 28, 2014 at 7:28 am

    Great way to relax and being pampered! I haven’t tried Shellac yet as I love changing my nail colour more regularly but I’ll give it a try tomorrow by your recommendation, thanks!

  • Reply
    Makeup Monster
    February 28, 2014 at 8:58 am

    I love your latest Shellac manicure, the last one I had lasted about a month I’d definitely invest in it now and again!

  • Reply
    February 28, 2014 at 8:20 pm

    oh nothing beats having someone else pamper you 😉 I’m a nail technician so I know all about shellac, always wear it, love all the looks you’ve had, great to see you dont peel it off and get it taken off by the beautician. plus nothing beats a good chat 😉

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