Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Gelibility: Turn Any Nail Polish Into Gel Polish

Gelibility: Turn Any Nail Polish Into Gel Polish via @chalkboardnails

Got a collection of hundreds of polishes? Interested in an occasional gel manicure, but don't want to shell out the money for a full gel color library? Love the variety of regular nail polish and wish you had the same options in gel? Could I sound any more like a TV infomercial?

Gelibility is a new LED/UV cured gel nail polish product that mixes with any regular nail polish to turn it into a gel. Honestly, I was pretty skeptical about how well it would work, but I was very pleasantly surprised. This stuff is really cool. Read on for the details, some swatches & manicures, and my full thoughts. It's quite a long review, but there's a lot to cover!

What is the Gelibility system?
The Gelibility system comes with Stick It!, which is a gel base, and Fix It!, a clear gel that you mix with regular nail polish to create your custom gel. Fix It! also acts as the topcoat to the manicure when you are finished adding your color coats. Both products are cured like a standard gel in an LED or UV lamp, and are dry to the touch immediately.

Does it wear like a normal gel polish manicure?
Though I haven't done a full wear test myself, the gel felt very secure while I had it on. My sister and her friend, who tried it out, reported wear equal to that of any other gel manicure. When you're done, Gelibility removes like any other gel nail polish manicure (no, not picking!). I used a nail file to break through the top layer of gel, and then used the foil method to soak it off.

Gelibility: Turn Any Nail Polish Into Gel Polish via @chalkboardnails

What is the process for mixing and applying it?
  1. Apply and cure one coat of Stick It!. Clean off the tacky layer using a lint free wipe and alcohol.
  2. Choose the regular nail polish that you want to turn into a gel. Using a paint palette or mixing surface, mix Fix It! with your regular polish (see note below). Avoid using the Gelibility brush for mixing, to keep your bottle of Fix It! perfectly clear. You can use either the nail polish brush or a dedicated gel brush for this. TIP: Go slowly to avoid getting bubbles in your mixture!
  3. Apply one thin coat of the color mixture to your nails and cure in an LED lamp (60 sec) or UV lamp (120 sec).
  4. Repeat step 3 until the color looks the way you want it to look.
  5. Apply one coat of clear Fix It! and cure.
  6. Cleanse the tacky layer using a lint free wipe and alcohol.
NOTE: The instructions say to mix equal parts regular nail polish and Gelibility, but the brand mentions that one drop of Gelibility has a higher volume than one drop of nail polish. I knew from reading Andrea's follow up review on Chickettes that one drop of Gelibility to two drops of polish would do the trick. 

Gelibility: Turn Any Nail Polish Into Gel Polish via @chalkboardnails

Obivously, mixing any amount of clear polish with a regular polish will change the way it looks. I've done some tests below to show what mixing Gelibility does to a few common types of nail polish. These mixes all show one drop Gelibility to two drops regular nail polish.

» Enchanted Polish Vampires Suck (deep burgundy holo): 3 coats of Gelibility mix vs. 2 coats of regular nail polish. Obviously the holo is getting dulled a bit, but it was definitely still visible!
» RickyColor Off Off Broadway (silvery blue glitter): 3 coats of Gelibility mix vs. 3 coats of regular nail polish. The regular nail polish has a higher glitter density, but the gel mix has the benefit of a smooth, non-gritty finish.

Enchanted Polish - Vampires Suck as a gel polish via @chalkboardnailsRickyColor - Off Off Broadway as a gel polish via @chalkboardnails

» Girly Bits Ho-Ho-Hope (pinky purple holographic) - 3 coats of Gelibility mix vs. 2 coats of regular nail polish. The faint holographic in this one all but disappears, but it retain its gorgeous color and speckled finish.
» Cirque Colors NYFW (cobalt blue creme) - 3 coats of Gelibility mix vs. 2 coats of regular nail polish. This one was basically unaffected, other than number of coats required. Just lovely!

Girly Bits - Ho-Ho-Hope as a gel polish via @chalkboardnailsCirque - NYFW as a gel polish via @chalkboardnails

I wore Gelibility on myself when I went to NYC for the Sally Hansen I Heart Nail Art finale! I used the drop-to-drop ratio for this look using Sally Hansen Earl Gray. I needed three coats for the opacity here.

Sally Hansen - Earl Gray as a gel polish via @chalkboardnails

I also used it for the accent nails in these gel manicures I did for my sister and her bestie. In the pink manicure, I mixed it with Lacquistry Amazeballs, and in the purple manicure I mixed it with Sally Hansen Liquid Gold. As you can see, it did affect the flat chrome finish on the latter, but I was also using the drop-to-drop ratio at this time.

Gelibility: Turn Any Nail Polish Into Gel Polish via @chalkboardnailsGelibility: Turn Any Nail Polish Into Gel Polish via @chalkboardnails

The Final Word 
I was totally thrilled with my experience with Gelibility. It worked brilliantly, cured immediately, and wore well. Yes, adding clear to your regular nail polish will affect the way it looks and applies. However, I think the versatility of this product more than makes up for that. I don't know how it does its magic, but this stuff is cool.

What now?
The Gelibility system is sold on Amazon.com and via Gelibility.com for $37.95. 
Visit Gelibility.com for further information and instructions for use.
Check out the Gelibility reviews on Chickettes (part one and two) for more tests and Andrea's thoughts. Being a gel blogger, she's an expert!


  1. This is such a cool and unique product!

  2. I agree! And despite how skeptical I was, it really performed well.

  3. It's always nice to be pleasantly surprised by something

  4. Now this is cool. I have been a gel polish failure but I would give it a try more often if I didn't have to buy a bunch of different colors. Awesome!

  5. These look good! I've never tried gel polish myself but they seem great if you want a long lasting manicure.

  6. What an awesome product. I need to try it

  7. Wow, this is a really unique and interesting product. Really cool if you want longer lasting manis!

  8. Wow, thank you so much for this article !! It's revolutionary ! I just place an order !! Eager to test the product :)

  9. Sounds very interesting - I tend to 'gel' for holidays and long trips so this could be very useful

  10. Your swatches are fantastic! Where do you get your swatch sticks?

  11. Thank you! These are actually false nails from Kiss -- bought them in a kit at Walgreens, and then I used BluTack to attach them to the ends of nail art brushes. Haha.

  12. I hope you like the experience as much as I did!

  13. Saw this in a nail tech mag and was interested and was left with 1 question:
    Can the Fix it can be mixed with regular polish in advance and be kept in a bottle for later use? (some sort of gel franken) I mean, I'm not too keen on mixing small batches every time I want to do my nails.
    Loved the cobalt blue:)

  14. Good question. I don't have any information on that -- not sure if the different chemical formulations would react strangely if you weren't curing them immediately. In theory it would work though. The regular polish does start to dry out the polish/gel mix if you leave it out in the open too long, but I assume you would be storing it in a sealed up bottle. Might be worth asking on the Gelibility FB page! :)

  15. Do you think there would be any way to add any sort of stamping into a Gelibility mani? I'm super intrigued!

  16. Gelibility acts just like regular soak off gel. So you could put on a Gelibility base manicure, stamp before adding the final layer of clear topcoat, and then finish with topcoat.

  17. Wow, that's something worth investing in!

  18. Patrycja CzerwińskaOctober 6, 2014 at 2:08 PM

    Great idea :]

  19. Hey :)

    I received my products, and tested it on 2 persons. I'm so disappointed !! The manicure has departed after only a few days !
    But there is something that challenges me... In the protocole, it's said that we have to remove the tacky layer of the bonder with alcohol (I used Cleaner, is it ok ??). But in a classical protocole, the tacky layer isn't removed, on the contrary... Or maybe I put too large a quantity of regular nail polish ??... How do you do to be sure to have the equal dose ??

    How long it held when you tested it on your sister ??
    And how did you do the preparation of the nail before ? White block and cleaner ??
    So sorry for my english, but I'm french ;) I hope I'm understandable ;) And I hope you could help me for this, I don't understand why it hasn't worked for me...
    Thanks ! ;)

  20. Gelibility made a post on their page detailing that equal parts of the two does not necessarily mean one drop to one drop. The volume of Gelibility is greater, so in reality the ratio will probably be closer to one drop Gelibility to two drops of polish. It wasn't exact though, so I doubt that's the problem.

    When I had my sister test it, she said it lasted like any regular gel -- 1.5 to 2 weeks. And yep, I buffed the nail, cleaned with a lint free wipe, and pushed back the cuticles. When I applied I was careful to keep it from touching any of the skin surrounding the nails. I can't recall if I cleansed the tacky layer off the base, I probably didn't to be honest.
    I'd suggest reaching out to Gelibility themselves too, they are pretty responsive on their Facebook page!

  21. Thank you very much for your answer. When I do soak off gels on my clients, it last 3 weeks (and it is because the nail pushed and there is a demarcation, so I do another manicure), so it makes a big difference :S
    Thank you for the advice, I will ask to Gelibility too... I don't know what is the problem, maybe some brands don't work with... I used with Beige of Picture Polish, and a LM Cosmetic one (I don't think it is famous around the world :P).
    Thanks again for all ;)

  22. Sorry I can't help you more! Good luck!

  23. I ordered it and had a MAJOR (I mean half the whole polish on the nail) chip within 5 days. I will give it another try but I was very disappointed.


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