Friday, September 21, 2012

My new favorite base coat

Where has this week gone? I haven't had any time for nail art, it seems.

I've also kind of been avoiding blogger, since they finally did away with the old dashboard layout. I'm not crazy about the new one, but they seem to have made SOME improvements since I tried it when it first rolled out earlier this year.

But that is neither here nor there, and you're here for the nails, aren't you?

 Doesn't look so interesting, does it?

That right there is Essie "Grow Stronger." Pretty much since I started this blog, I've been talking about how bad my nails are peeling. I've had bouts with peeling nails on and off for years, but this had been, by far, the worst, most stubborn case of it I've ever had, and resulted in me trimming my nails way back.

The above shot shows my let hand (the better of the two) with one coat of Grow Stronger. On the package, it says that you can see results in five days, and you certainly can. I've worn this every day for three weeks, and have seen a vast improvement. Unfortunately, my line of work keeps undoing all of that progress, but I know that it keeps happening, and I know that my nails would be much worse without it.

Here you can see my right hand--the worse off of the two--before the base coat. Let me reitterate: This is what my nails look like after improvement. I did have tears that went at least a quarter of the way down my nails.

Every time I get to that point of almost, almost--I bang my hand or tear a nail or something gets stuck and I have to use my nails to pry something open, and then they get torn up again. But between constant moisturizing and this base, my nails are noticeably stronger (even when completely bare) and growing much more quickly. I think that once the stained bits grow out, I should be back to healthy, strong nails. Anyway, that's my theory and I'm sticking to it.

Grow Stronger is a pale pink in the bottle, but goes on clear. I did experiment, and after three coats you can kind of see a bit of milky color, but there really isn't enough to show up or affect a polish color.

Even if you don't have a bad case of the peelies, I would recommend this for anyone with weak nails, or who would like to grow them longer. I noticed that my manicures lasted on average 1-2 days longer with minimal damage--which is one reason why I don't have nail art today. I'm loath to take off my polish until it starts to chip (the slightest chip, however, and all bets are off!).

Essie Grow Stronger is $8, and you can find it anywhere Essie is sold. I got mine from Giant Eagle, but I have also seen it at Target and I think at Walmart.


  1. Have you tried Mavala Scientifique, you can find products on Amazon. Simply the very best for weak & pealing nail problems. 1 little bottle of the hardening solution will last you the rest of your life, or just about, especially because you will start seeing results after the first week. Go to amazon, type Mavala Scientifique & get the starter kit for like $30, you will not be disappointed. I had the same problems & had tried everything, you gotta give it a try.

    1. I'd not heard of that one before. $30 is a little beyond the reach of the shoestring at the moment, but I will keep it in mind for the future.