Friday, September 16, 2016

The good, the bad, and the ugly for almost a full year but now actually really nice looking

Wow. I just realized it has been almost 1 year since I last posted. The reason for this is mostly because my nails have been a big pile of poop for the entire time. I am going to walk you through a little treatment journey I have been on and let you know about the pot of gold and the end of my long, brown rainbow of shitty, peely, garbage nails. Warning, the following pictures aren't very nice. These photos were taken to document progress. The lighting is sometimes shitty. There will be occasionally fuzzy bits. Bear with me.

I took these picture on July 17. This was about average in terms of what my nails would look like. I would file them down to meaty nubs, and within a few days they would end up like this. Feel free to click on the image to blow it up a bit if you want to see the real nitty gritty ugliness. Every nail is peeling. Though the ring finger may look like the star of the bunch, it is also peeling if you look up close.

Left hand

Right hand

I had given up so completely on having nice nails by this point, that I had started to, obviously, chew at my fingers again. On a side note, taking pictures of the nails on your dominant hand is hard. 

Here we have a display of the nail treatments I had been using up until these pictures were taken. There were MANY more that were shoved back into the Helmer to die after failing me around halfway through the bottle. 

I oil my nails. I use Lemony Flutter every night. I layer Bag Balm over top of the Lemony Flutter. I use cotton gloves overnight. I have lotion in every purse, at every desk, by my bed, in the bathroom, lotion galore. It didn't make a difference.

I had complained about this in a Pretty Serious Facebook group, asking the members which treatment I should buy, because I had seen so many people raving about their treatments. To my delight, I was gifted both Rock On and Harden Up by Kaz and Ben from Pretty Serious in exchange for my documenting how they worked for me. I nubbed up my uglies once more, and set out consistently wearing Rock On on my left hand and Harden Up on my right hand to see what difference each made. 

I used them consistently underneath my polish, occasionally with a base coat on top, but usually no base coat. I would usually use 1 coat, but sometimes I would use 2. I moisturized as usual. I didn't change things at all other than switching to using Rock On and Harden Up.

July 21 left hand (4 days progress)

July 21 right hand (4 days progress)

So far so good

July 26 left hand (9 days progress)

July 26 right hand (9 days progress)

Well then. Things seem to be equally shitty on both hands. I was taking these pictures right after taking off my nail polish btw, so that is why they look extra haggard and dry.

July 29 left hand (12 days progress) I am wearing 1 coat of Rock On in this picture

July 29 right hand (12 days progress) I am wearing 1 coat of Harden Up in this picture

Things are obviously getting a bit better, but things are still far from good.

August 1 left hand (15 days progress) 1 coat of Rock On

August 1 right hand (15 days progress) 1 coat of Harden Up

Okay then. Perhaps things are not getting better? Also, those are nasty cuticles Past Self. For shame.

August 4 left hand (18 days progress) 1 coat of Rock On

August 4 right hand (18 days of progress) 1 coat of Harden Up

Nubbed back down and reapplied. I was getting kind of down by this point. I was hoping that if I just kept up the good fight that eventually the shitty parts of my nails would grow out and be filed off leaving only nail that had been exposed to the PS treatments and HOPEFULLY then things would stop reshittifying ever few days after getting my hopes up with handsome nubs.

August 18 left hand (32 days of progress)

August 18 right hand (32 days of progress)

I think by the time I scrubbed all the glitter off my nails I was too lazy to bother with the extra side bits. That shit makes for some sore forearms. I didn't foil method for 2 reasons, 1 I didn't want to take it easy on these nails. I wanted to see how these treatments would stand up to real life shit, and 2, I wasn't in the fucking mood. Sometimes I would rather just sit in front of my computer watching Naruto and scrubbing glitter off until I have forearms like some kind of person with strong forearms would have. Anyways, things are still not gorgeous, but at least the shittyness seems to be confined to 1 or 2 fingers at a time instead of a full house of crappy nails.

August 25 left hand (39 days of progress) 2 coats of Rock On

August 25 right hand (39 days of progress) 2 coats of Harden Up

It seems my right hand pinky is growing a beard in this shot. Nice. Things are getting better maybe? AT least there is a bit of length now, if still with a bit of damage on a couple of nails.

August 28 left hand (42 days of progress)

August 28 right hand (42 days of progress)

Truly it pains me to put up these pictures. The right hand looks like I ran it through a bunch of spider webs. Also, I will say it again, taking pictures of your dominant hand is fucking hard. Oh, and I will also take this opportunity to appeal to the nail bloggers of the world. Please do not put up pictures with nasty cuts and scabs and mangled cuticles. It's gross. I don't care how amazing your application was. I don't care if the lighting was perfect and you captured all 3 colours of the multichrome you were trying to blog about. Take the time to edit that shit out if you must. This, however, is like a documentary. This is the National Geographic of the nail world. I am allowed. Though truly it pains me. Good god is it ever ugly.

The left hand picture marks a turning point for me, where I actually realized that things were starting to happen. I broke a nail. Why is that a big deal? Because they were strong enough to break.

I am going to take a little break here to complain about something slightly unrelated. I am doing this because I have happened upon the picture while going through my archives to complete this post. I have only tried the sponge method once in my life to apply a flakey polish. Look at how much of the bottle it used up. What the actual fuck. I am never doing that shit again.

September 8 left hand (52 days of progress). It's going to be left hand only from here on out. I started to layer them. Harden Up over Rock On. Game changer for me.

September 11 left hand (55 days of progress).

I have reached the point where my nails are able to get uncomfortably long to type with. 

This is how much of the treatments I have gone through (I spilled a bit of Rock On though so it is a tiny bit lower).

I filed my nails down to my preferred length last night. It was hard! I had to bust out one of my mega files that I would use to grind off gel polish to take down the length before finishing up with the glass file. I was so stoked. Then today I shaved off a chunk of nail on my blogging hand when I was doing my legs in the shower. As soon as it happened I was like... right. Of course. Whatever. At least now I know they will grow out fabulously. I want to polish my nails again. I want to take pictures of the polish I put on my nails again. They have never felt so strong. They look great. 

ADDENDUM: Once your nails are long enough, apply the treatments UNDER the nails as well. It makes a huge difference if you are trying to maintain length.

Let me do a little reminder here. Please imagine the REE REE REE REE you're gonna get stabbed noise.





In summary, layering Harden Up over top of Rock On seems to work the best for my nails. My nails are really thin and prone to peeling, the type to bend and not break. I am not ever going to buy another treatment. Holy Grail. Sometimes I would leave the house without polish on, just the treatments. I would continuously look at my nails like, wait are these my nails? Yes? Nice.

Pretty Serious are super reasonably priced. They use Australian dollars, so that means they are almost on par with the Canadian dollar (works out to a bit less than $10 each for the treatments), and the Americans buying from them are getting a fucking smoking deal. I think they end up being like $7.50 USD each for the treatments. You can buy the treatments here. I suggest you do so. I feel like I haven't even reached the top of nail mountain. With continued use, I think my nails are probably going to turn into diamonds. Literal diamonds. I think I might become a cat burglar, since I will then be able to cut glass with my new diamond nails.

I am going to officially end this post with some pictures of my new kicks. Rad right?

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