I am an avid at-home manicure lover! Giving myself a manicure weekly is my favorite thing to do for self-care and me-time. I always say you can tell how stressed/busy I am by the status of my nails. Madam Glam reached out for me to try their at-home gel kits and I was so intrigued. I tested them out for a few weeks and wanted to break down my full thoughts in a Madam Glam review.
Madam Glam Review
Before diving into the polish quality and longevity, let’s talk pricing structure. The one thing I don’t love about Madam Glam is they have a model very similar to Fabletics. You can purchase the product on it’s own but they do encourage their VIP Club which is $29 a month. On the 1st of the month, they will charge $29 on your credit card and $29 of store credit will be automatically added in your account to shop your favorite products on the website.
Your store credit will be kept in your account (up to 12 months) and you can use them whenever you want! By being a VIP Club member, you earn 50% off everything as well as free shipping, access to new arrivals early as well as other bonuses.
You don’t have to sign up for this program but you may be paying more in the long run. If you plan on just buying a few things once I would probably skip the VIP but if you think you’ll be purchasing new polishes frequently it might be worth signing up for the VIP Club.
When it comes to polish I am very impressed! Madam Glam offers certified Vegan Gel Polish by Vegan.org, Hema-Free Gel Polish, Cruelty-Free Gel Polish, 21-Free Gel Polish, Palm Oil Free Gel Polish and Gluten-Free nail and gel polishes. I really love this because there aren’t crazy things they are trying to slip into their products. They also have a large variety of products with more than 1,800 gels and 800+ shades available and launch new colors every month.
I used my typical polish prep routine of trimming, filing, and buffing my nails before applying the Soak Off Base Coat. Between each polish coat, I cured the gel with the mini LED lamp from Madam Glam. The lamp is timed so I just hit the button once each time and cured for 30 seconds. For the color polish, I found that really thin coats work much better than thick gloopy coats. I applied 2-3 thin coats (curing in between) and then topped it off with the Soak Off Top Coat.
The one thing interesting about the top coat is after you cure it there is a tacky layer so I just took a wash cloth or cotton round and buffed it off unitl it was smooth and shining. It’s so counter-intuitive but it works.
With more practice I found tips to help it last longer but initially, it lasted only about a week. Once I started doing really thin coats and was careful around my cuticles it lasted much longer (closer to two weeks). I did find that the more careful I was and the more time I took the longer it lasted. I also found buffing close to the cuticles really helps it from peeling up over time.
When it comes to removal, my favorite guilty-pleasure is peeling off gel polish soooo I did that the first few times. As I got better at the application that became more difficult. The best technique I found for removal was to soak my nails in acetone and foil (like they do at the salon) then rub the polish off and buff my nails down. There was some damage to the nail beds but nothing concerning.
Overall, I really like the at-home gel set. It’s fast, easy, and lasts a while. All in all, I would say it takes me about 20 minutes to do a full manicure it lasts up to two weeks. I did end up buying some cheap colors on Amazon to see how they compare and there’s no comparison. I can definitely tell Madam Galm is of higher quality and longer-lasting. With that being said, I would recommend purchasing the mini LED lamp, the base coat, and the top coat from Madam Glam and getting the polishes on Amazon if you have to cut corners but it really is worth it to go all-in on Madam Glam.