Dr Rescue to the… Rescue

I make no secret of the fact that my nails are manky: my nail beds are shallow, my cuticles grow like weeds, and now that splitting has entered to repertoire, they are simply hopeless. Can this new line of nail product from Maybelline make a difference?
DR RESCUE balm
I love the idea of a ‘lip’ balm for my cuticles and SOS Balm Nail + Cuticle Care is new one on me, and the promise to moisture brittle nails is one that I’m going to hold it to.
DR RESCUE the balm
The actual application is slightly awkward given the flat surface, which doesn’t glide as well as it ought. Applying some to a finger and transferring it to another finger is a fair enough solution, if slightly messy. After one round, though, my cuticles were shiny with health, so that makes up for the awk.
DR RESCUE all in one
There is a separate Gel Effect Base Coat which provides the look of lacquer and a CC Top Coat which helps to whiten and brighten the nails, but if I can do something All-In-One, that is always going to be my choice. This is a base, top and treatment and it’s the way I’m going to go.

At €5.99 for each, you can DIY your manicure for about the same price as you would in salon, if not cheaper. We’ll see how my manky nails and I get on!

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Oh, The Relief! CND Solar Oil

CND SOLAR OILI’ve been away from my desk for the last while — working at desks in offices, and ahem, away for the weekend in the South of France — and if there was any sound indicator that I haven’t been sitting in my own seat, it’s one look at my cuticles.

I’d have to put up some sort of trauma warning if I was to post a photo of them. Like the WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT that the Daily Mail often trots out. {Yeah, tell me you don’t often visit the Sidebar of Shame.}

They are in rag order, and the reason they are is because: not at my desk, where all my nail treats live. They live here because since I mainly work from home, and because I am so bad at tending to my nail health, it seemed like if I kept them right next to my computer, I would actually use them.

This plan works, when I am actually here.

Anyway! I just applied a healthy amount of CND Solar Oil: Nail & Cuticle Conditioner, and if my nails could moan, it would be in ecstasy. They were being all ridgey, and the cuticles themselves were raggy and growing at a pace that threatened to cover my nails completely. This was like bathing them in a pool of joyous angel tears — I can feel the benefit already, and the oil hasn’t even sunken in fully.

As oils go, this is not that oily! I literally started this post directly after brushing on the treatment. Sweet almond oil meets vitamin E in a blend that is light, and feels like it’s healing all the way down to the bed of the nail, in addition to rehydrating my poor cuticles.

As ever, with any quality product, a little goes a long way, and €8 for the bottle is a snip. I am just about ready to go another round…

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When Worlds Collide: Mane ‘n Tail Hoofmaker Hand & Nail Therapy

Ah, lads. Seriously? All this package is lacking is my name on it.

MANE N TAIL hoofmakerHave I not got manky nails? Have I not got a love of horses, and horseriding, and all things horsey in general? < Except for the DNA thing about the burgers?

Have I also not got a lazy streak a mile wide that means even when I find a miracle fingernail cure the like of Dr Lewinn’s, and even though I keep it right there next to my computer, I still manage to forget to use it? Is there any way in the world to keep me using something that is good for me?

Yup — just slap a picture of a horse on it.

I don’t remember how The Original Mane ‘n Tail Shampoo & Conditioner got back on my radar. I used to it to good effect many years ago when I was still living in the States, following an ill-advised bob. The hairstyle just didn’t suit me, and I was keen {desperate} to get my long hair back. This was before my conversion to all things equine, and whilst I certainly wasn’t responding back then to the picture of the horses on the containers, I snapped up it up anyway — it said it was going to grow my hair back.

Actually, it didn’t promise that, but nevertheless! My hair grew back really quickly, and with body. And shine! And I remember thinking, My scalp feels really healthy.

Ah! Now I know why this brand came to mind: Scalps are the New Black. Products targeted for scalp health are on the ascendant — and next week I’ll be talking about the fantastic Nioxin Scalp Renew Dermabrasion Treatment — so some little connection in my neural map referring to The Hair must have snapped a synapse or something.

I got some S&C samples to review, and, long story long, the Hoofmaker was included, too.

What happened was, this was originally developed to treat cracked hoofs, but the horse owners noticed that their own hands were improving from the use of it. Here are the bullet points:

> Moisturizes dry and cracked nails
> Protects against nail damage
> Maintains strong and flexible nails
> Softens and conditions callused, rough areas
> Restores vial nutrients

The last one is not an issue for me, which is why I never bother with hand creams that say they help your nails too. My hands are vitally nutriented, and never get dry. But my feet! My manky feet! I can use this on my own hooves!

I’m gonna be Mane ‘n Tail from head to toe!

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The Original Mane ‘n Tail Hoofmaker has an RRP of €7.95/£7.99/$2.99

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Other pony mad people make like to visit here.

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Ooh, Let’s Try This, Too: Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure

In Greige Gardens! This neutral purple-y grey is just lovely, and we’ll put it to the ‘horseriding glove test’, too.

<< In more evidence that I have A} freaky, awful nails and B} no dignity whatsoever, here’s a really creepy picture of me  trying to show you what this gorgeous colour looks like in the wild.

Well, that is hilariously awful, so here’s the actual bottle itself, so you can see how it is actually pretty.

What is going on with my palm? It’s looks so stretchy and gross! Half the pictures I take of my face don’t make it on here, which has nothing to do with dignity and everything to do with vanity. I don’t what is up with the iPhone camera lens, but it makes my nose look like I sup a bottle of whiskey every night, and then get into a fight: red and squashed.

I also received a bottle of Nude Now, which sounds like an order, and sorry but I’ve got stuff to do that requires clothing. I kid.

Anyway, we’ll see how I get on after this evening’s equine adventures. Fingers crossed for a good result, ha ha.

Both of these go for €8.95, and can be got at selected pharmacies, and department and grocery stores nationwide.

Manky Nails: 2012…

…is looking much like 2011. And every year before that.

I rarely get homesick for Amerikay, but when I do, it’s for family, friends, and manicures. $10 manicures on my lunch hour. $30 mani-pedi Mon-Weds. I just heaved a massive sigh.

I used to get a manicure a week. Once. A. Week. I can’t even imagine. I certainly don’t bother here — and before you get all INP on me, I’ve gotten manis in Dublin, Paris and London and they have all sucked. NYC baybee — and Manhattan in particular, because even the Brooklyn manicures are rubbish.

I am still applying the Mavala Cuticle Oil, and it peels them off like a mofo. I can’t understand why it doesn’t even seem to end, though. I mean, I know that there will always be skin around my nails, but this seems ridic, like I get one day of smooth and then it’s all crap again.

I have been remiss as regards the OPI Nail Envy Nail Strengthener, and I know that’s on me. I’m even sitting here this very second, as I type, looking at it but not picking it up and using it. Hopeless.

One thing I have been procrastinating about is trying out the Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips. I had taken a set out of the packaging and looked at them before Christmas, even held one up against a thumbnail, and then decided to bring them with on my hols… and then I figured, I’ll just get a real manicure, so they never even made it out of my case. And I didn’t get a real mani either.

I do believe I am entirely apathetic about the state of my fingernails.

Despite having come to this conclusion, I decided to give these a go.

At left, the carnage.

You get a wee nail file, an orange stick, and two packs of nail strips, all sized to fit the variety of your fingers. I took up a thumbnail strip, peeled off the protective plastic and stuck it to my nail… but it didn’t stay stuck… so I tried another… no joy. WTF?

Then I figured that using the strips that had been sitting around in the open air since before Christmas was a bust. I reckon this is like leaving the cap off your nail varnish bottle for almost two months and expecting everything to be a-ok?

Into the untouched pack, and eureka, it works! Well, it sticks to the nail, anyway. I Had a whole bunch of excess hanging over my nail bed, that I kind of poked at until it peeled off. You are directed to file away the extra bits at the top, which totally did not work, so I cut most of it off, and then wrapped some of said extra over the top of my nail.

Yeah? Okay. Less muss, a bit more fuss, but that looks pretty good, except you can’t see the raggedy edge on the right side of my nail. LOVE the pattern, and I’m keen to see if this makes it through horseriding tonight — hmm, this maybe why I have relegated nail care to the basement of my House of Beauty. The gloves make a mess of everything but shellac. Once, I tried to preserve a Verrrrry Expensive mani I got in Harrods, and rode without gloves one lesson, and the varnish still chipped anyway.

You know, I am such a lazy bones I may not even finish this hand? Because then I’d have to do the other hand. Like, one nail is kind of funky, but only five out of ten fingers? I don’t know if I can pull that off.

I’ve done a swing around the ‘net, and everybody is better at this nail thing than me. Go here for evidence of how someone who is not crap at their nails does a nice job with these. SAD FACE.

€8.95/£7.50/$9.99

Manky Nails: Hmmm

Having all this nail care stuff right at my, ha ha, fingertips on my desk is working out really well.

I’ve got Nail Envy on my right hand, and on my left, just for the craic, I applied essie fill the gap!, a ridge-filling base coat. Looking at the nails on my left hand right now, I see that they look pretty good.

Really good, actually: somewhat shiny, and smooth. I expect I need one of those white blocky things that manicurists use — I’ll have to look into that.

I’ve only had it on for day, but yeah, they look the way that I perceive nice, normal nails to look.

I’m going to give it some time — when I’m off horseriding for the holidays [sob!] and give some varnish a go.

€13.99/£10.95 /$10.00

I don’t have time to take a snap of the product itself, but you may find many pictures here

Nail Envy is Also the Name of a Product

I tried to take a photo of my nails to show you how funky they are, but I may have to write the thousand words, ’cause the picture wasn’t worth it. Whenever I see women with gorgeous nails, I want to cry. Ugh, even the shape of my nails is WRONG, all spatulate and no nail bed to speak of. Waahh.

My nails are thin, ridge-y, and just plain weird. They grow in all floppy and crooked, which means I can’t grow them very long. Also, I am too lazy to take very good care of them, which is kind of ridic: I spend a lot of time at the computer, and should really be slapping on cuticle oil and God knows, because, well, I am basically a captive audience. If I do do a treatment of something, I can work away without messing anything up.

Okay: I’ve just placed the following within reach:

> Mavala Cuticle Oil

> Sally Hansen Gel Cuticle Remover

> Essie Fill the Gap! Ridge Smoothing Base Coat

> OPI Nail Envy: Nail Strengthener

Right. Obvs, won’t be using these, so I’ve started with the Nail Envy, given to me by the lovely Sophie, who gave me a superb file-and-polish at Neelu at Arnotts last week. Thinking of her now, she told me to use the cuticle oil everyday, so here I go… hmm, that wasn’t that hard. Just gave myself a going over with the Marala, and my cuticles look all smooth and shiny. And as I’m not about to go out and dig in the garden {Ahhahahahaha} the stuff has a good chance of doing what it’s meant to do.

As for the OPI, yesterday I put on the recommended two coats, and oh right! Hang on… wow, live-blogging my nail care. Just swiped on my day’s coat of Nail Envy, which I am meant to do for a week, then remove, then start all over again.

I don’t know if I should have waited to let the cuticle oil sink in all the way? Told you, rubbish at minding my nails.

Well, I’ll keep you posted…