How to care for your nails at home like a professional.jpg

Home gel nail kit (photo 1)

You do not have to travel to the nail salon to get your nails painted with a gel polish. Or, to go back another time to get it removed. Like most other home gel nail kits, Swedish cosmetics brand Depend’s new GelLack system lets you cure its gel polish formula under an LED light.

Depend’s gel polish has a thickness and gloss similar to regular salon products.

It promises to last up to three weeks without chipping, although the lacquer on my index fingers started to chip after a week. The best part about the GelLack system? Removing the polish is a breeze. Just rub the Remover Oil (blended with natural oils) onto the edges of the polish, and soak the nails in a bowl of warm 40 deg C water. Then, gently scrape the polish off using your fingernails.

The Depend GelLack starter kit ($99) – which excludes the Removal Oil ($6.90) and the nail colours ($13.50 each) – is available at selected Watsons stores.

Nailcare routine (photos 2 and 3)

Ciate’s new The Treatment Collection is possibly all you will need to keep your nails strong and healthy.

The 14 products promise to help solve your “nail woes”, such as dullness, brittleness and dehydrated cuticles.

There is also a nail polish corrector pen to correct messy DIY manicures, as well as a cuticle oil made from the African marula nut to keep the digits moisturised and glossy. Each product costs $24 and they are available at Sephora stores.

Do-it-all top coat (photo 4)

Sally Hansen’s new Gel Shine 3D Top Coat ($13.90, from selected personal care stores and at BHG) can transform your regular polish into a gel-like high-shine one. The quick-drying top coat adds volume to the nail colour (so it resembles gel nails) and amplifies the shade so it pops even more.

This story was first published on The Straits Times Urban on 17 April 2015.