By Emma Raho – Staff Writer
I’m writing this incredibly slowly, sitting outside The Art of Nails in Albany wondering how tf I’m gonna drive myself home. In typical Emma style I’ve bypassed all sensible beginner nails on gone straight for majestic, gothic, and very pointy stiletto nails for my very first set of acrylics. I’m relying on the ability of the human body to adapt, stubbornness, and luck to get through the coming week which just happens to be one of the most important in our calendar – New Zealand Fashion Week.
The nails themselves are beautiful. A work of art. It doesn’t do them much justice to be attached to my clumsy and inexperienced hands that’s for sure.
Something I didn’t anticipate was how sensitive my nails were going to be for a wee while. Top tip from your Auntie Emma – Don’t immediately try to pull a huge load of towels out of the dryer the second you get home. Give your fingers some time to adjust to the length and circumference of your new nails and desensitize a little. Opening cans, tying laces and general lifting are all possible, you’ve just got to amend how you execute these maneuvers.
One thing I was super nervous about was carrying out my, ahem, ‘personal hygiene’. In every post featuring long, beautiful nails there always seems to be some bloke called Gavin crying “but how do you wipe with those things??” The answer is – surprisingly easily actually. I won’t go into the gory details but prepare to use a little more toilet roll than you would normally. I was relieved in more than one way (yeah, yeah, I’ll see myself out).
Had a mini crisis trying to use my credit card in the civic car park. Couldn’t figure out how to grip it so I could pull it out in a timely manner. Visa, if you’re reading this, people who wear acrylics could really use a little loop or tow rope on their cards, just an idea for you. Credit card melt down aside I’ve been amazed by how my body has overcome what I thought would be a major hazard. I have also somehow managed not to stab myself in the eye which is nothing short of a miracle, but there’s still time…
Ok forget what I said previously about not stabbing myself in the eye. While it hurt, it was also completely predictable considering how ham fisted I am in general.
So while I’ve been marveling about how I’ve adapted to my nails and have started fancying myself as Mystique from X Men, I’ve hit on something you absolutely cannot do with long, stiletto nails – and that is play any kind of sport. If you play any type of team sport you’re obviously not going to pass the nail check, you cannot get gloves on if you play a sport like ice hockey, and even if you could they are going to get in the way and be unworkable. If you’re a person who plays sport, nails like this are more of a sometimes look than an everyday thing.
Ok I’ve just about sussed driving, picking up flat objects from a flat surface, operating small machinery like cameras and keyboards, and not bending my nails back every time I try to do anything. I’m actually starting to enjoy the aesthetic of my long, cat claws. However, it’s the end of a very long, tiring week and the urge to chew has struck. I’ve been a chewer rather than a dedicated biter all my life and thanks to my gnawing nature, my nails are no longer flawless. I’m just impressed I got to day five before I succumbed.
Time to say goodbye to my acrylics and re-embrace that short nail life. I’m kinda sad to see them go but also looking forward to having my regular nails back. I’d definitely have long acrylics again for a special occasion. Getting them off was a pretty easy process and my nails underneath seemed largely unscathed by the experience so they are definitely workable for short term wear. You don’t need to make a huge commitment to them which is good to know.
Thank you so much to Vyctoria and the beautiful team from The Art of Nails Albany for taking such good care of me and making this whole experiment heaps of fun. You can find Art of Nails Salons in Albany, Ponsonby, Sylvia Park, and the brand new store at Newmarket Westfield.