17 Apr Oh La La! or Oh Mon Dieu! Le Mini Macaron Review
So I attended the Health and Beauty Expo this April, where I got my hands on the DIY gel polish device, appetisingly named Le Mini Macaron. I must admit that I was hungry at the time I encountered the display area, so would be naturally drawn to anything named after a delicate French cookie. Also, I am a bit of a sucker for all things new and unusual. And I was in-between salon visits, so my nails needed tender loving and care BIG time. Read on to find out if my French affaire with Le Mini Macaron is one for life.
My gel polish story
As a matter of disclosure, I do not like Shellac, gel polishes or other long-lasting nail products. The reasons are two-fold.
On one hand, regular polishes wear very well on me, so I do not have to resort to such heavy duty products. I am talking about 10-12 days, on average. I do not know if this is due to my lack of housework (don’t judge, this is a Cyprus thing), some form of natural propensity of my nails to attract colour or black magic. Additionally, I do not bite or chew my nails, either, unless gel polish is involved, funnily enough.
On the other hand, I have a hectic schedule and keeping appointments is extremely difficult. At times of chaos, when faced with alarmingly increasing root re-growth, even more alarmingly increasing bikini line hairs and an impending manicure, I tend to vote out the nail procedure. Which means I have to apply my own polish at home often. I have the biggest trouble removing gel polishes, so prefer to have a simpler solution that is easily wiped off with some acetone.
How Le Mini Macaron works
So the packaging contains a single pot of polish (red, in my case), a USB-operated LED light, several polish removing pads, soaked in solution, a nail file, a cuticle stick, instruction manual and the USB adaptor. It doesn’t contain a top coat, a base or further manicure items.
The premise is that the polish, developed by the brand, serves as top coat and base, as well as colour. I do not know how that works at all, I must admit.
So you start off by pushing cuticles back, filing your nails (edge and surface!) and removing any natural oiliness on your nails with polish remover. Personally, I do not understand how a nail can be oily.
Then you are to apply a layer of polish on your nail, making sure it is super thin. You dry each nail in the provided LED light machine, shaped like a macaron for 30 seconds. The lamps are self-timed, so you will simply see it go off, when done. You apply the second layer in the same manner and dry again.
Presumably, you are now done and can apply hand cream and the lot.
How I have used Le Mini Macaron
So, I did not file the surface of my nail, as the file is simply too rough to put my lovely nails through this havoc. Presumably, roughing up the surface creates a good canvas for the gel polish to stick to. As I have said before, I have had no trouble with regular polishes and their ability to stay on nails. I expect nothing less from a gel polish.
However, I did not buff them either, heeding to the advice on the manual. So my nails were as bare, as a day, when I started.
I applied a super thin layer the first time around, making sure I wipe off almost ALL gel polish from the brush before taking it out of the bottle. This meant the first layer was ugly, as hell and not at all to my liking. I persevered and stuck around for layer 2. I took the liberty to be a little more generous with this one, yet conservative still, for my own taste.
And then I did the unthinkable and applied layer 3. This is not advised but the result after 2 applications was not the glossy look I expect from gel polishes and I gave it a try.
Now the lamp itself is a delight to use and I find it great that I get to examine each nail individually. You are advised to work on each nail and possibly close the bottle in-between applications. I did no such thing but I like the flexibility of being able to amend each nail at a time, if things go wrong.
The problem I have with the lamp is that the chord on the adaptor that I am supposed to plug into the socket is much too short. I do not have a table or desk in my house, where an electrical socket is within such a short distance from the top of the furniture in question. I had to use a power bank to light up the lamp.
My Le Mini Macaron impressions
Iwill purchase additional colours for Le Mini Macaron for several reasons. Here are the pro’s of the gadget:
- super easy to use
- no need to apply several products
- fast drying time
- good basic colour selection
- LED vs UV light (UV is dangerous for skin and I already live on the island of eternal sunshine)
- super easy to remove, unlike ALL other gel polishes I have ever tried
- lasts as long as any other polish on me (basically, I removed it because my nails grew out a LOT after 12 days).
“Oh la la!” it is then but not without some con’s. This is not the device for you, if:
- you prefer to dry your gel polish an entire hand at a time
- you worry about the gel seeping into your nail surface somehow and prefer a base
- you want an extensive range of colours (this is limited to basics, but I do not mind and will add Gold Glitter to my Cherry Red)
- you do not have a portable USB power bank (the chord provided with the adaptor is much too short, unless you have a desk with a power socket within 50 cm reach).
My overall impression of Le Mini Macaron is positive. I removed it with relative ease, only slightly pushing the soaked off gel from the nail, using the other edge of the cuticle stick. I did not have to resort to violence against my nails to make it wear well, as it lasted just as well as any other gel before. All in all, this is a fun and great addition to my beauty collection, which comes with all the benefits of gel polish (Salut, fast drying times!) and none of the drawbacks (Adieu, impossible to remove colour!). You can buy yours online in Cyprus and for the love of God, start embracing online stores. You don’t know what you are missing!