Remember my Super WalMart manicure? It was super and it was from Super WalMart, just to clarify. It was a compliment to my dress for the wedding and I received several compliments on my nails when I returned to work. Since my nails usually do not look very nice due to my working with horses several times a week, people were kind of surprised when I arrived to work suddenly sporting pastel pink/shimmery polish. (They were even more surprised when I told them I got my manicure at Super Wal Mart b/c I so hate that store.) After a day or so, I started feeling very pretty and feminine because of the bright polish. When I went to show someone something by pointing it out, my nails sparkled. They also made a cool clicking sound on my keyboard. It made my typing sound very fast and efficient. The polish even made it thru several evenings of barn work. By the end of the week, I was wondering if I should get a manicure, say, every other week! I could be one of those woman with perpetually beautiful nails! And at a bargain price! And, I could get my hair cut, do some banking, buy my groceries, new glasses, new tires, and get my oil changed all in one place in addition to the manicure! (There is nothing like Super Wal Mart...it was the biggest thing to hit this town a few years ago. Before Target, I mean.)
Over the weekend, I was doing a bit of manual labor at the new house when I noticed I had actually chipped a nail. It was kind of bothering me so I got out the polish remover when I got home so I could remove my lovely manicure until my next trip to the *salon*. When I wet a cotton ball and applied the remover, nothing happened. Nothing at all. Now I knew why the manicure was so lovely and durable. The polish must have been some kind of paint product normally used on armoured vehicles. It didn't even smear, much less soften. When H got home and I mentioned my perma-nail color, he suggested I try removing it with lighter fluid. Now, I have very VERY sensitive skin so even the IDEA of putting lighter fluid directly and on purpose onto my skin made me begin to break out. Like a skilled surgeon, H carefully applied some lighter fluid to a cotton ball. As he went to wipe off the polish, he said, "See? It is taking it right o...hhhhmmmm. This doesn't seem to be working." My nails sparkled back at us mockingly. "H!", I screamed, "How am I going to get this crap off?" Polish remover, lighter fluid, gasoline...we pretty much went thru the mechicanic's toolbox without success. My poor hands, once sporting a lovely manicure, now looked like they had spent a considerable amount of time soaking in caustic liqids. Which they indeed had. My skin was looking pretty raw while the sparkley pink polish, aside from the one small chip, still looked good as new. As I doused my irritated hands in lotion, H declared how amazed he was at the durability of the nail polish...he commented on how much money I could save on manicures if the polish lasted THAT long.
Just as I was heading off to WalMart to have a chat with the manicure folks, a buddy of H's had a suggestion. The guy is a painter so he said laquer thinner may work. Ouch...please no more caustic chemicals! He and H both agreed that WalMartManicureGuy would probably not use anything much more gentle since the polish seemed pretty resistant to everything. Aside from some nuclear destruction process, there didn't seem to be anything that might break thru the sparkley barrier so why not give it a try. I finally let H's friend dab laquer thinner onto my nails. We all broke into a rousing cheer when, after a bit of work, my nail was free of pink polish! We carefully liberated the rest of my nails from the confines of the lovely polish. I resumed my lotion regime so my hands are nearly back to their old selves. I haven't even attempted to remove the polish from my toes...they are still looking good so we'll just keep it that way. :)