Essence gel nails at home vs Alessandro Striplac

Hi dolls!

I had a chance to try the Alessandro Striplac set, so today I'd like to talk about the two kits (Essence gel nails at home) I've tried until now. This way some of you who are indecisive about the two sets, will get an idea of which one is the best for them, if any. 

In the box

Essence gel nails at home starter kit (+ old UV light)
Alessandro striplac starter set

 In the Essence set you get a primer, cleanser, base and a top coat in the starter set. 
You can purchase an additional Frech top coat or a starter set which includes the french top coat instead of the clear top coat.
+ I'm throwing in an LED light (3W) because without it you can't work. Theoretically it's in the starter set.
All this for the price of 45€ (with the LED light). 
You can purchase an additional set without the light for 15€ (or less than 4€ for the extra topcoats).

In the Alessandro set you get LED light (6W), Twin coat peel-off 2v1, cleansing pads, one colored polish, a nail file and cuticle pusher. Not bad, eh?
All this for the mighty price of 98,95€
You can purchase the top&base coat + a colored polish for 36€ (this means 17€ for a polish!)

You have seen the prices and contenent in the boxes, but where's is the difference? 

Essence is cheap, we get that. But the huge plus is you can use it with any nail polish you own. That's right no need to buy a special colored nail polish, just to get those shiny gel nails! 
But the huge downside is that it takes some time to dry. Because it is a regular nail polish (if you aren't using the french set), you need to wait for it to be completely dry, to finish the manicure with the gel top coat. 
Also it takes some time for getting used to this set, there's the process of trial and error and it's not pretty!

* cheap!
* can use regular nail polish with it (any!) + stickers etc
* the polish needs time to dry, as it has to be completely dry before finishing with top coat
* takes some time to master the perfect manicure
* the cleanser in the set is the exact same thing as the Alessandro cleanser pads, just cheaper
* can come a bit thicker on the nails than the Alessandro striplac (especially if you're doing it the first time)

 Alessandro comes with a name and a hefty sum. But it is idiot proof and it dries within seconds (under the light). So you don't need to wait for the polish to dry naturally, no. Just apply the base&top coat, stick it under the light, then apply the colored polish, under the light it goes and finish off again with the base&top coat + 1 min under the light and done. That's as much time as it takes. So this is a huge plus! It also comes as very thin on the nails, thus natural looking (the shine gives you away tho!)

* extremely easy to use
* quick dry
* damn expensive (for me)!
* the light included is stronger than the Essence's (thus needs less time - the old LED light)
* limited range of colors
* looks super thin on the nails
* less layers means a more even application


I love the Alessandro striplac line, but to be honest I can't afford it. At least for now. The color range is very limited and very expensive. It also lasts for 6 months (says so on the bottle, is it a marketing trick?). I am impressed with how thin it all is on the nails! I tried doing my Essence gel manicure the way it should be and it also came out very thin! But the Alessandro striplac manicure is less time consuming, which is great! I'd prefer it  (the Alessandro striplac) for quick manicures and the Essence for more nail art oriented ones.

I am a bit sad that the Alessandro striplac lasted only 3 days on my nails (but I was working with a broken lipstick - the ones with lip balm and some sharp edges, nothing would survive it!) and a day later my Essence gel manicure lasted only a day! So I suppose I can't say a thing about lasting power now, my nails are sh*t right now!

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