During The Great Gelous Scare of 2012 (about two weeks ago when everyone freaked out because Gelous was OOS everywhere), I went to Sally’s to do a CP for Jeanette from The Swatcholic. The whole nail community was in nailapocalypse (Jeanette’s words, haha) hoarding mode thinking that this beloved basecoat/topcoat had been discontinued. WHAT WOULD WE DO WITHOUT GELOUS TO SMOOTH OUT GLITTER POLISHES!?!?!?!? So, obvi, I went to Sally’s to stock up the fallout shelter. When I got there, to my horror: no Gelous, anywhere. Dejected, I looked around at the nails section of Sally’s Beauty Supply and my inner monologue went something like this: “hmm… I’m already here… Husband’s waiting outside, no need to waste a trip to Sally’s and walk out empty-handed, right? I mean, I have to buy SOMETHING, right????? Of course I do, it would be weird not to.”
And, there, like a glowing beacon next to the wasteland that was the empty Gelous display, was a full display of Yellow Stopper (which should have been my first tip-off), a treatment/topcoat made by the same company that makes Gelous, American Classics.
“Perfect!” I thought. In my constant battle against the horrific yellowing of my nails, I’m always trying new products for the affliction. And I’ve pretty much tried everything, nail bleaching products, denture tablets, scraping, buffing, color correcting basecoats, trepanation, hex-bags, bloodletting, leeches, ritual sacrifice, even using real bleach. (Ugh, no bueno, highly unrecommended… don’t judge me.)
In any case, I got home, super excited to try this out. I read the instructions: “Apply daily to natural nails or over a French manicure to prevent yellowing. Do not use over colored polish.”
Hmm… okay. Maybe I’m crazy, but I read that and thought that it was a basecoat. So I applied a thin layer to my nail, the same way I would with any basecoat. It visibly and immediately improved the appearance of yellowing on the surface of my nail. The clear liquid has a bluish tint to it. It’s not a shimmery pearlescence like the blue tint in Barielle Nail Brightener, the liquid itself has an inner brightness (if that makes sense). Excited, I painted my usual 3 coats of color polish over the Yellow Stopper and topped it with Seche Vite. The mani was Rescue Beauty Lounge Catherine. I usually do my nails right before bed, so I finished, waited about 15 minutes, did my usual nightly beauty routine, and went to sleep.
I woke up the next morning to find terrible tip wear on every finger. I was seriously confused – that has never happened before, ever. Had I just woken up from a two-week coma? Had I been sleep-typing? I looked over at my husband. Oh no… did I claw him to death during a nightmare? Whew. He was still alive. My computer was nowhere in sight and I didn’t have any muscle atrophy (rather, I didn’t have any more than usual). It was like I had been wearing my polish for 7 days while typing out Moby Dick cover to cover, nonstop. I didn’t want to go out in public that way – but, of course, the endless cycle of the yellow curse is that you wear polish, so your nails begin to yellow, so you wear more polish to cover the yellowing. I couldn’t remove it and go to work with naked, yellow nails so I let it be. Less than 20 minutes later, just in the process of showering and blow drying my hair, my polish peeled completely off. We’re talking like peel-off base coat style. At that point, I cut my losses. I removed the remaining polish and went to work polishless. Boy, after not doing that for a while, it sure felt weird.
After that I read some reviews online. Everyone had similar experiences without regard to color nail polish brand. Apparently, Yellow Stopper is really meant to be used solo or as a top coat over a French Manicure as per the instructions. (Although, I really can’t imagine wearing polish for so long that it turns yellow – does anyone really have that problem?). Most often, smokers reported it being very useful to correct yellowing from smoking cigarettes. That’s great… that accounts for maybe 5% of people with yellowing problems. And kudos to those people – this is the perfect product for them. But what about everyone else? This product seems entirely useless for anyone who wants to wear nail polish all of the time. It’s like the classic infomercial product that is really great for solving a problem that no one has. I think I’ll keep my bottle around in case I’m ever forced to go nail-naked again since it did a good job masking the yellow. But, with that said, this product was a pretty big let down, I don’t think I will purchase it again.
Thusly, the search for a product to help me cope with the yellow-plague continues. I’m currently trying out Bubble White, also from Sally’s. So far, so good. I want to use it a few more time before I post a review. I have been reading about at-home remedies as suggested by a few lovely twitter ladies too. I’ll definitely try that soon.
What about you guys – do you have staining issues? If so, what do you do for it?