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My St. Paddy’s Day Emerald Green Shellac Attack

By on March 17, 2011
in CND
This past weekend I visited Chicago to check out America’s Beauty Show, one of the largest professional beauty trade shows in the US. The show just happened to coincide with Chicago’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade and the Chicago River being dyed green.  Talk about perfect timing for a green polish fanatic, no?

I arrived in Chicago on Saturday wearing China Glaze Starboard, a pretty rad St. Paddy’s Day color, but the following day I had an appointment to get Shellac’d at the CND Suite at the ABS show.  While I was happy to give Shellac another run, I was sad that I wouldn’t be rocking a fabulous green come today.

Thankfully CND Education Ambassador Kris Kiss came to my nail rescue applying a layering combination of Shellac colors that fulfilled all my green dreams.  Using Shellac Black Pool and Shellac Iced Coral she created an eye-popping green that does this most festive holiday justice.

Application & Formula: If you missed my initial detailed review of CND Shellac, make sure you check it out but just to recap Shellac is a nail polish hybrid that combines the best that nail polish and UV gels have to offer.  The result is a long lasting manicure that applies like polish, wears like gel and removes in 10 minutes flat.

I’m sure, like me, you raised an eyebrow at the thought of a coral over black to create green but if you ever owned Iced Coral prior to the Colour & Effects launch then you remember that it has a green flash. When applied in an extremely thin layer over Black Pool all you see is the green as the coral base fades into the background. Pretty amazing, no?

In person this color is so much more vibrant.  Here it looks akin to OPI Jasper Jade but it’s more like the offspring of Lippmann Don’t Tell Mama and butter LONDON Thames, a blue-green peacock-esque metallic shimmer.

Application Tip: For all the nail techs out there, Kris says the key is to apply Iced Coral as thin as possible, to the point of dragging the color over Black Pool.  Applying it thicker would result in a much lighter color.

To make my manicure a little more festive we decided to ice my thumbs with some craft glitter.  I’ve heard the phrase “Blackberry Bling” used to refer to this style.  Manicurist Dawn Sterling coined the term a couple years ago when she started bejeweling clients thumb nails, since they are so noticeable when texting.  

Kris created my own version of Blackberry Bling using a green Martha Stewart glitter. After applying the base coat, two coats of Black Pool and one coat of Iced Coral, Kris dampened a nail brush with Isopropyl Alcohol, dipped it in the glitter and brushed it on the nail. She burnished the glitter into the tacky Shellac color by blending it with a circular motion, sealing it with two layers of Shellac Top Coat.

The final look!

Bottom Line: From the beginning, my biggest gripe with Shellac was the lack of colors. My core nail color obsessions are green, purple and blue so the initial set of 12 shades did nothing for me.  I was overjoyed to see Rock Royalty in this latest release but it still didn’t feed my blue/green hunger.  It wasn’t until this past weekend that I jumped fully on the Shellac bandwagon as I can finally have my funky colored cake and eat it too.

For all you blue lovers out there, the pale pink shimmer, Beau, has a blue flash that creates a navy or gunmetal shade depending on how it is layered.  As you can see, with all the new color combinations being discovered the range is continuing to grow and for the moment I am satiated though I’m still campaigning for Blue Blue Shellac.

Layering Tip: Unsure of how two colors will look when layered? Swipe a coat of the top color on the exterior of the base color bottle to preview the end result.

CND Shellac is a salon only service.  Prices vary by location but expect to pay 50% more than a standard manicure.  To find a location near you visit

So what are you wearing this St. Patrick’s Day?  What do you think of my layering combo?  Do you have any special plans to celebrate the holiday?  Where are my hardcore St. Paddy’s Day partiers who start the day with kegs & eggs at 6am?

Looking for last minute St. Paddy’s Day green nail polish recs?  Then check out some of my fave Irish greens in my St. Patrick’s Day posts from 2008, 2009 and 2010.

Disclosure: Shellac services were provided by CND. For more info view my Disclosure Policy.

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  1. My CND Shellac Experience | Nails and Noms | May 12, 2011
  1. Kristen says:

    Essie — Going Incognito on the digits today!

  2. Michelle says:

    I love the concept behind CND, but it looks super streaky and more blue-green than green. It could be a problem with color shift when uploading the pic.

  3. sara says:

    So pretty! I’m wearing Nubar Reclaim. It’s finally sunny in C-bus (even though I’m stuck at work because of the budget), so a holo seemed super appropriate. A grass green one? Even better! Also, this is seriously the best nail polish to apply ever! How did I never buy Nubar before?? :)

    • Ronnie says:

      I know I’m late, but that’s what I’m wore too (and am still wearing :D). It is a seriously delicious color!!

  4. donna says:

    I can’t seem to find a saloon that wants to layer colors let alone add glitter. boring.

  5. jess says:

    love the bling!

  6. Scienter says:

    Looks great! I’m wearing China Glaze Cracked Concrete over OPI Gargantuan Green Grape. My original intent was to wear just the GGG, but after 2 coats it was still really light and I got lazy and put the crackle on over it instead of doing a 3rd coat. :P But, I like the way it looks!

  7. flipflopgal says:

    Essie Pretty Edgy on my tips & Confetti My Favorite Martian on my toes. Love the bling, I don’t have a blackberry, but may have to give it a try :)

  8. ach167 says:

    Have you had any issues with it harming your natural nails? Or has anyone else? I loved how your manicure turned out esp with the “blackberry bling”! I’ve been seeing glitter pop up all over the place and I have to say that I’m a huge fan of the Martha Stewart glitter for other uses, never thought of it for nails.

    I’m loving my Sinful Colors in Morph Orleans (emerald green-teal) rimmed with China Glaze Passion (gold) for this St. Patrick’s day!

    • Chris says:

      I am a manicurist and I use Shellac on my clients and myself. There is no harm to your nails.

    • Mikol says:

      I am a manicurist also. Shellac cannot damage your nat nails. The only thing that can damage your nat nails (other than yourself) is you manicurist. Finding a good one is essential to happy and healthy nails.

  9. Adria says:

    I’m wearing Nubar Green Tea w/ a French Tip in Color Club ‘Object of Envy’ with a gold glitter stripe! It’s my first DIY funky French mani.

  10. meme says:

    I am ‘dressed’ in OPI Green is the New Black with a light coat from the Burlesque glitters over in Glow Up Already. It’s OK – different and not a bash of bright green glitter that is going to look like left over holiday in 2 days. I can make it with this coloring post holiday fest long as the polish job lasts – with the glitter & top coat generally that’s a good 5 days for me.

    Never would have thought coral over black anything to end up with your great kind of Coo-Coo For This Color Shelacing! I am with you on the lack of diversity in the CND gels. But as expensive as each bottle is, they better come out with some good tips on how to get shades I want or I am not going to get set up at home to do it like I want to. Kind of looking around at other long lasting gel UV/LED lines to see what I want to do.

  11. Sara says:

    That’s a really awesome effect!! I’m rocking Essie Pretty Edgy, not too surprising there! :)

  12. Diane says:

    I love how this combo turned out on you. So interesting that a coral shimmer would result in such a vivid and decidedly non-coral finished product XD

    My St. Patrick’s Day mani is kind of boring – China Glaze Four Leaf Clover on most of my nails, and my ring fingers are in some NYC orange creme I forget the name of.

  13. That’s great, thanks for sharing more about Shellac! I’m wearing Sinful colors Call You Later – it’s a green and gold glitter that SCREAMS St. Patty’s Day!!!

  14. rachael says:

    I’ve seen all the awesome CND layering combos with shellac, but other than the color & effects can this be done with normal colors to change things up? I always run in to issues when trying to layer at home…

  15. AkashaGermaine says:

    I’m wearing OPI Here Today, Aragon Tomorow Suede with an Essie top coat. Thanks for the recommendation back Dec BTW, just never had a chance to waer it then. But I saw it sitting on myself Tues and shouted out loud ‘St. Patty’s day!’

  16. milktea says:

    Amazing use of color! Gorgeous greens!

  17. natalie says:

    pretty color. am not a fan of shellac at all.

    it ruined my nails. yes they were hard while the shellac was on, but after it was taken off, my nails were paper thin and peeled like crazy for months.

    • Jan says:

      Is your nail tech using the official CND remover wraps? If not, find one who does. Sometimes, as in my case, the bi-weekly acetone soaks can damage your nails. But the wraps (the real ones, not the foil cheepy-homemade-costcutter version) are intended to help with gentle removal.

  18. ReaderRita says:

    This is awesome- I really like this look- and the bling is great! I DO wish that CND would just make some cool green/blue/grey shellac colors, though- it’s so silly that they haven’t- they’re easily cutting off a third of their customers! (if not half…)

  19. Yasmin says:

    Wow this is sooo nice!!! I love it!!

  20. This is so cool! Its like Color and Effects in Shellac form. They really should do that actually! I think it would be really successful.

  21. telesilla says:

    I wore China Glaze’s Gussied Up Green. We had sun here yesterday and every time I went outside I just stared at my nails, all but hypnotized by the shimmer.

    Your combo here makes me a lot more interested in the shellac process; most of the available colors look so boring to me.

  22. heather says:

    kris kiss was my educator a few times. shes awesome and so so talented !

  23. Lola says:

    RGB Minty! My fav!

  24. sunflower says:

    I used to work at a salon that did shellac, at first we all went crazy for it, but everyone who got it done, our nails got destroyed from it, all peeling and brittle. I think its good to use once in a while, say for a wedding or the holiday season when you are too busy to think about fixing chipped polish. Its is a shame its so destructive to nails as its a fantastic concept :(

    • Mikol says:

      What do you do for prep before applying Shellac? I cannot understand how nat nails become brittle. I have SO many clients who come in for a Shellac mani every 3 weeks and have been doing so for almost a year – not one has had problems with their nat nails.

      • Robby says:

        I have the wraps and my nails are better than ever. Must be the soaking that is damaging nails:-(

        • Natasha says:

          I have a shellac mani every 2-3 weeks and have never had an issue with my natural nails being damaged, even with them being soaked in acetone. I has not damaged or improved them, they’re the same. Shellac is awesome!
          I’m wearing Rock Royalty with Iced Coral over the top, it’s gorgeous! I was the guinnea pig, my girl likes to experiment. We call it peacock, it’s a great colour. I imagine it would make a really great bright aqua colour using the hot pink as a base under iced coral… maybe next week….

    • szende says:

      Kindly responding to ‘sunflower’…
      I have been working with Shellac since the product first launched, and I have to say that your comment is completely false.
      Shellac is not a destructive product in any way, however any service or treatment for that matter if not performed by a well trained professional can have destructive results.
      It has to be stated that if Shellac is applied and removed the proper way, using the correct accompanying CND products and removal methods it will not cause any damage to the nail.
      I have great success with the product and continue to use it personally as well and my nails are as strong as ever!

  25. Lena says:

    wow that is GORGEOUS michelle!

  26. Alllison says:

    awesome color!

  27. Medusa says:

    That looks so beautiful! I would like to try Shellac soon!

  28. Joye says:

    I would like 2 new colors of Shellac, interested in a frosted translucent pink like the old french manicures, should I get the negligee or something like clearly pink? Also, not sure if I should get the Tutti Frutti, or Hot Pop Pink, would like a nice fuschia, without it looking like bubble gum, not too much blue. The color bottles are not accurate from CND, need more real swatches on peoples fingers. Thanks

  29. KathiD says:

    I love the look of your shellac-ed nails! I see that you actually can buy the CND shellacs and the UV dryer online. Is there any reason one (me!) couldn’t do this at home?

    • Mikol says:

      It requires practice – other than that, no, you can do it at home. Application techniques are part of licensed training, which makes for perfect application. Besides that, it’s an expensive investment for single person use. But hey – if you have the extra money and can afford to buy Shellac base, color, and top coat plus their UV lamp, do it! Just don’t scrooge on the lamp – use only CNDs.

  30. JD says:

    I agree with Joye. I would also like a nice darker fuschia or hot pink that isn’t bubble gum or sparkly. Something on the cool side. Also a darker cool red without sparkles.

  31. Pamela says:

    The trick to preventing nails from drying out and peeling with the Shellac is to be sure the clients apply solar oil daily both on top of nails and underneath the free edge.