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Tutorial: A long lasting manicure or pedicure

I’ve blogged about creating a long-lasting manicure (or pedicure for that matter) before, and I’ve had some requests for a more detailed blog post. So here goes 🙂 I have been mixing normal and gel nail polish to create long lasting, glossy manicures and pedicures for months now. I have been very happy with the results – I get to use all the pretty coloured normal nail polishes that I have and by sealing the nail polish with a gel top coat, I also get a long-lasting and durable manicure.


To get started, here is what you’re going to need:

  • Clean nails 
  • A clear base coat (normal nail polish)
  • A coloured (normal nail polish of your choice)
  • A clear gel top coat (gel nail polish)
  • LED lamp

Here is a step-by-step photo tutorial to show you how I created my red manicure by using both normal nail polish and gel nail polish.

mixing gel nail polish with normal

The ‘tools’ that you will need

mixing gel and normal nail polish

Step one will be to apply a clear base coat – this can also be normal nail polish

normal nail polish gel top coat

I like to apply two coats of the normal nail polish – this time I’m using a deep red from Revlon. It’s important that you allow the normal nail polish to dry properly before you apply the gel top coat.

gel top coat on normal nail polish

Applying the gel top coat – with this step it is really important that you pay attention to cover the whole nail. It also helps to ‘cap’ the nail at the bottom.

setting gel top coat on normal nail polish

Setting the gel top coat – I keep each hand under the light for 2 minutes

long lasting manicure with gel nail polish

The final look – a shiny and glossy manicure thanks to the clear gel top coat

It’s as easy as that! As mentioned above, it really is important to allow the normal nail polish to dry properly. If the regular nail polish is not completely dry and you apply the gel top coat, your manicure will smudge. The LED lamp will not dry the regular nail polish – you have to let it air dry. I leave about 30 to 45 minutes between applying the normal nail polish and the gel top coat to allow the nail polish to dry thoroughly.

I am using the Sensationail DIY gel kit’s clear gel top coat and LED lamp – I bought it at Edgars for around R1k and it’s been one of the best beauty investment’s I’ve made. The kit has paid for itself over and over again – just think about how much it costs to have a gel mani and pedi done at a salon or spa. Now, the DIY kit doesn’t seem so expensive anymore now does it? 😉

My manicures last anything from a week to 10 days, and my pedicures even longer. To remove the gel top coat you’re going to have to follow these steps – just follow them carefully and you’ll see how easy it is to remove gel nail polish.

That’s it! Give it a try and let me know in the comments what you think 🙂

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  1. Gel Nail Polish Colours | Sensationail DIY Kit | StyleDiary -

    […] and pedicure kit earlier this year and I’m absolutely loving it! I’ve also been experimenting with mixing normal and gel nail polish for a long lasting mani or pedi. Interesting results so far So, earlier this week I popped in at Foschini to buy a new bottle of […]

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