At Home Gel Like Manicure

Something you might not know about me?!

I love getting my nails done.  Like go every 2 weeks, never miss an appointment type of LOVE.

For the past three years, I’ve gotten shellac manicures every 2-3 weeks and over time, my nails have become super thin and brittle. But to be honest, I keep getting them done because I love how clean & gorgeous the shellac looks, that it stays on for over two weeks and that I don’t have to wait under the dreaded fan for them to dry, only to walk out and smudge them in my car. (Seriously though, how frustrating is that?!)

One of my most asked questions in my Instagram inbox is “what nail color is that?!”

And if you know me, you know that I have three go-to colors…..“Mod About You” (non gel version here),  “Taupe-less Beach” (non gel version here), & “Let’s Be Friends” (super hard to get a hold of and sold out all the time).

It was one of my New Years resolutions to try and attempt to do my own manicures every now and again to give my nails a break in 2018. Could I do it?! Sure. Did I want too?! Not so much.

Then Essie reached out to me about their new gel couture line and I took it as a total sign that it was time to try out something new.

With over 50 shades to choose from, the Essie gel couture line gives you a real gel-like looking manicure (seriously though, it shines just like real gel) without the hassle of having to go to the salon, sit under a UV light and have it applied and removed like regular shellac polishes.
Um hello easy!

My overall impression?! (Remember, I’m picky and slightly OCD!)

I was SUPER impressed. And I’m not just saying that because Essie sent me these colors to try…this collection is GOOD.

The brush shape makes it easy to apply and the top gel coat is super shiny and drys in about 3 minutes.

My first chip happened 7 days later. ONE WEEK you guys! I was pretty impressed with that. In these pictures, I’m wearing two coats of the color “Pre Show Jitters” which is the perfect blush white for spring. One of my other favorite colors is “Take Me To Thread” which is a beautiful purplish grey.

Now of course it doesn’t last as long as a shellac gel manicure BUT it keeps your nails healthier, you save a little bit of money by doing it yourself and with these polishes, it looks like the real deal.

Final verdict?!

You can find Essie gel couture nail polishes at the following locations:

Nordstrom Rack

(If you click on any of the retailers above, it will take you straight to the gel polishes)

Thank you to Essie & for the gifted product as part of the #preenmevip program & for sponsoring this post – all opinions are my own.




  1. Atty Anais
    March 13, 2018 / 10:23 pm

    I'm a huge fan of these Gel Couture as well – they last at least a week on me as well!

    • Ashley
      March 14, 2018 / 12:01 am

      So good to hear! What are your favorite colors?! I'm going to try out "Sheer Fantasy" tonight! It's like a sheer light pink!

  2. Bridget
    March 20, 2018 / 6:27 pm

    Thanks for the tip! Just used it for the first time yesterday (picked up over the weekend after your recommendation).Obviously I need to see how it lasts, but it went on so easy and dried so quickly that I didn't mess it up immediately, which was a huge win!

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