I've had my eye on Minx for ages now: a bit like Incoco - but waaaay more fun - it's been seen on the talons of many a celebrity including Lady ZzZz (or Lady GaGa as I believe she is more commonly known) and Beyonce. There have been a few places around the country offering it but it's just gotten proper Irish distribution through Creative Academy and Spa, the Irish distributors of CND nail products, kaplanMD skincare and Solar Oil. So that means we'll be seeing it in lots more places soon.
I headed out to their HQ in Fashion City (not a city in a whizzy William Gibson city-of-the-future stylee; an industrial park in Ballymount, dedicated to the rag trade) on Friday to check Minx out for myself. It's an odd location to go and get a beauty treatment but the reasoning behind the spa being there is that the company's training academy is in the same building, and the fact that there are so many offices and businesses in the area means there's a captive audience for lunchtime treats. If you work nearby it's a great place to have handy and was busy during my visit on Friday with ladies getting weekend pedis.
Right so - what is Minx? It's stick-on nail art, basically. Like Incoco, it comes in pre-shaped pieces and is pressed onto the nails, which need to be lightly prepped before hand and buffed to give the product a key to stick to. Unlike Incoco, it requires heat to seal it and isn't a consumer product - you'll only find it in salons. Where Incoco is composed of layers of polish and topcoat, Minx is a thin plastic polymer which gives it greater longevity and makes it possible to print all manner of weird and wonderful patterns on top. Incoco can be removed as you would any polish, but Minx needs to be heated and removed either in-salon or you can do it yourself by blasting a hairdryer at nails until the transfers start to lift, then peeling them off.
The most exciting thing about it is, of course, the pattern options, of which there are over 150. I won't lie - some of them are disgusting. But some of them are AWESOME: polka dots, leopard print, fishnet effects, houndstooth, tartan, flames, skulls, stripes and checks are all on offer. What did I go for?
Why, the metallic gold and silver cheetah-print ones, of course. This is really where Minx comes into its own, with metallics. It's really hard, if not impossible, to find a paint-on polish that delivers a true metallic finish but you can absolutely get that with this product. Plain silver and gold options are available but my trashy tastes will always want the gaudiest, so of course I had both. In leopard print.
And I am frigging DELIGHTED with them. Straight to Twitter I went, to tweet excitedly about how fab my nails looked - they look a lot better than the pix above, for which we shall have to blame my crappy camera. I spent all of Friday and Saturday admiring them and while a bit of housework on Saturday (bed changing, shoe-culling) and Sunday made the tips lift slightly, you can press them down again or blast a bit of hot air at them to stop any lift worsening.
Promising four-to-ten days wear, I was told that (especially for metallics which can scratch) it would be a good idea to lash on a topcoat after a couple of days, which I think would help with any peeling issues that might occur. While I've already gotten the minimum four days wear I doubt I'll get ten days out of them - nor would I want to really. The point of Minx is that it's a fun, fashion-led product and I'd want a change before ten days are up - even if it did stick around for that long. I was assured that my own nails wouldn't be damaged if they were removed properly and there's certainly none of the intensive prepping that happens with gel or acrylics, so hopefully all will be fine.
Would I get it done again? Does the pope live in Rome? In other words, YES. I'm hooked. This is just a brilliant, fun thing to have done. It can be as fashion-forward as you like, or as subtle - brides are going for a light fishnet pattern to accessorise the classic French, but you can vamp it any way you want.
Prices will vary from €25-€35 (to compare, it's $70 in the states) depending on the salon and to get Minx done for yourself, call Creative Academy and Spa to make an appointment with them or to find stockists in your area. The number is 01 429 5122, or check out their website at www.creativespa.ie.
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