I’m Kirsten, and I’m here to make your nails all gorgeous, in the comfort of your own home or place of business in the greater Portland metropolitan area.
“So, you come to my house? But my house is dirty! Can’t I just come to yours?”
First of all, I can genuinely assure you that I could care less about your housekeeping. I’m a dirty little piggy myself, born of a long line of dirty piggies, and can’t cast aspersions in that department. Secondly, you can’t come to my house because if I were to perform services in my home, I would have to have my home licensed as a facility (which is patently impossible in my current home).
“Could you come to my office on my lunch break? Could I have my friend come over to my house, and you can do both our nails? How about my whole book group? Or for my office’s Employee Appreciation Day?”
Absolutely! It doesn’t have to be your home; it just can’t be mine. I can do parties, groups, you name it. Keep in mind that I’m only 1 person, so if you want 10 manicures done in 2 hours, you’re SOL unless you’ve got a Time-Turner stashed someplace.
“Great! Here’s my address in Vancouver…”
Sadly, I’m only certified to practice in Oregon state. In the future, I may apply for reciprocal certification in Washington, but for now, find a friend in Oregon and I can see you there!
“How can I pay you?”
Check or cash at the moment – I hope to accept credit cards through PayPal (or an analog thereof) soon. Please make checks payable to Kirsten Cook. Have some awesome skill or treasure? Let’s talk barter.
“I would love a pedicure, but surely my horrible feet are too horrible for anyone to touch them ever!”
Whatever – feet are feet, don’t even worry about it. Don’t believe me? Check this link out. Gnarly feet need love!
“What’s this UV gel polish Shellac business all about?”
It is my own true love! Have a seat while I testify: you guys, gel polish has changed my life. I was a person who never kept a manicure for more than 36 hours – usually I had messed it up by dinnertime. I’m hard on my hands; I wash things, I open bottles, I peel labels, I pick at things, I dig in dirt. I’m a bad hand-owner. My nails are weak and break off pretty often (really, I deserve it after what I put them through).
Shellac and No-Chip Manicure are brand names for a kind of nail polish derived from gel “fake” nails. Most gels are UV cured, which means they need to sit under a UV light in order to “dry”. Gel polish is somewhat thicker than standard polish (but not as thick as a “fake” nail), and is a lot more durable than regular polish. I find this extra thickness an awesome structure for weak nails; personally, I have almost no nail breakage when I’m wearing it (but if I go more than a day or 2 without it, I definitely will). Gel polish also doesn’t seem to have a negative effect on the natural nail, like an acrylic often will. Nothing topical can cure weak nails, but I believe gel polish can manage them without making it worse.
A gel manicure typically lasts 2-3 weeks, with minimal or zero chipping – usually, my clients notice the grow-out at the nail base before they notice any chipping! The brand I use is Gelish, made by Harmony. I prefer Gelish because of their fantastic color range, and having tried most of the brands out there, I find it easier to apply and longer-lasting.The only drawback to gel polish is that removal is a pain in the buttcheeks – soak in acetone for about 15 minutes and gently scrape them off. NEVER EVER peel off your gel polish! God will kill a kitten if you peel! The soaking breaks the bond the gel has with the top layers of your natural nail, so if you peel you’ll take a few layers of nail with it, which will weaken your poor nails. Don’t do it, kids.