Given how well my experiment with the Maybelline Nail Falsies went the last time my natural nails were in sad shape, I again turned to fakes during this most recent episode (as mentioned in this post. Since I am easily distracted by new and shiny things (and also because I couldn't remember where I'd put the other set of Nail Falsies I'd bought), this time I tried a set of Kiss Gel Fantasy nails that I'd bought from a new display at Rite Aid.
For my maiden voyage into Kiss nails, I chose a black design with blue and orange red glitter gradient tips. The box didn't seem to indicate the name of the design anywhere, but the Kiss website says it's called Painted Veil.
There are directions on the back of the box for both glue and adhesive tab application; unlike the Maybelline nails, these come with both the glue stickers and liquid nail glue.
Inside the box, there are 24 nails (2 each of 12 sizes), a mini wooden cuticle stick and two-sided mini emery board, 24 adhesive tabs, a tube of nail glue, and more extensive instructions.
As with the Maybelline nails, some of these had little protrusions at the ends that I needed to smooth down (good thing they included that emery board). Unlike the Maybelline nails, these were not numbered on the underside of the nails that I could see, though the directions said "nails are sized by number, noted underneath nail". This meant I had to spent time sorting them into pairs by size before I could start choosing which ones would best fit my nails.
The adhesive tabs are covered with clear unmarked plastic, which made them harder to place on my nail than the rose tinted covers with a notch at the center bottom that the Maybelline have. These had a sort of bulbous shape, too; I'm not sure what the idea was behind that. Once I'd sorted the nails and picked sizes, they went on pretty quickly. I used the second biggest for my thumb (number 1) and ranged down to the the second smallest for my pinky (number 10).
These are oval shaped, and the curve of the oval tip started much sooner than it would if these were my natural nails, at least when I put them flush with the base of my own nailbed.
The box said these were medium length; I'd call them long. They're as long as my natural nails have gotten in recent memory, anyway (though I realize some ladies do wear them longer than that).
Compared to the Maybelline nails, these Kiss ones felt thicker and less flexible. They also felt slicker and harder, and they're definitely very shiny. The glitter on the tips is very pretty; it has some holographic color shifting bits in it that I found quite entertaining to look at.
Though the directions call for putting these on clean nails, I did use a treatment base, which I think is at least partly to blame for the two nails I had pop off during the six days I wore these. (The first one to let go did it at a very inopportune time, just before I sat down for lunch with Tracey of traceyloveslacquer. If I'd brought the little bag I'd put the extra nails and glue pads in, I would have reapplied right then, but I hadn't.) I got lots of compliments on these, more than most of my manicures, for sure.
Taking the Painted Veil nails off when I was ready was just as easy as the Maybellines: drip a little acetone along the side of the nail, wait a few seconds, then gently push up and off with a cuticle stick. The surface of my nails seemed undamaged by the process.
I still had some splits in a few of my own nails, so I followed with another set of Gel Fantasy nails, a French mani look called To the Max with iridescent glitter on the white tips. These were also "medium" length, but squoval shaped rather than oval. The image on the box shows different sizes of round glitter but the nails actually had one size of hex glitter plus very small glitter.
These felt shorter than the oval nails, though still longer than my own nails have been for a while. The squarish edges took a bit of getting used to, but definitely covered my natural nails better than the ovals had. The base color was transparent enough that my half moons showed through (on the fingers where I have them), which helped them look more natural. Or would have, if it didn't also let the air pockets between the glue pads and the nail show, too. Some additional pressing and rubbing reduced those pockets but I never got them to go away entirely.
I didn't like the To the Max look nearly as well as I had Painted Veil. That thick white tip combined with the chunky shape made me feel like I was one step away from duck nails, and that's not my thing at all. These are still on my hands as I type this, but they are coming off soon even thought they're still in fine shape. The first couple days I thought I just needed time to get used to these, but this shape and length and look has not really grown on me at all.
Bottom line of my review: I didn't like these as much as the Maybelline ones, but might try them again in a shorter length/other design. The best part of these was the glitter.