x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Tried and tested: going snakey for the glam

Real snakeskin gives your nails an exotic touch.

A snakeskin manicure will leave your nails glam and unique.
A snakeskin manicure will leave your nails glam and unique.

WHAT I TRIED Snakeskin Bio Sculpture Gel Manicure with real, naturally shed snakeskin.

WHAT I EXPECTED After trying gel nail varnish and Minx manicures, I assumed this would be something in between, combining textured pattern with everlasting nail colour.

WHAT HAPPENED First came a normal manicure. The technician, Geleene, then prepped my nails with a primer that removed any oils, ensuring the gel would stick. After painting a layer of Bio Sculpture Gel Base Coat and drying my nails under UV light, she pulled out a sheet of snakeskin and cut pieces to fit onto each nail. Geleene then applied two layers of a pale peach gel colour as a base tone, followed by another blast of UV light. The bits of snakeskin then went on, followed by a thick layer of Bio Sculpture S-Gel and the UV light. The dried gel was buffed and topped with a final coat of gel and a last blast of light.

THE VERDICT I feared it looked like I had acrylics stuck on, as my nails were thicker than normal. Also, the snakeskin was cut so it didn't completely cover my nails and appeared as a circular pattern framed with a pale peach border. The process took about three hours, and then 45 minutes of intense soaking and scraping to get it off. Despite these disadvantages my nails were glam and unique - I got plenty of compliments.

Nadia El Dasher

Dh900 for full-set or Dh90 per nail, Sisters Beauty Lounge, Abu Dhabi, 28th Street between 9th and 11th, 02 222 2501