Mark your calendars, mani-maniacs. This October, OPI is launching a new soak-off gel called OPI GelColor. A faster-curing, thinner formula than OPI Axxium Soak-Off Gel, it comes in bottles with brush applicators like polish, and cures under light emitting diodes (LED) like those used in your TV remote control. And, says Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, Executive VP and Artistic Director of OPI, GelColor is just as strong as Axxium Soak-Off Gel.
At launch time, OPI GelColor will be available in 28 shades. The formula requires just 30 seconds in an LED box to cure, and promises at least a two-week chip-free finish no thicker than nail polish. Soak-off time should be only 10 minutes.
Also soon to be available are individual fingertip soak-off sleeves for folks leery of soaking fingers in bowls of acetone.
In case you need an Axxium Soak-Off refresher, here's a recap: it comes in little pots and has a liquid gel consistency; it needs two minutes of UV light exposure per layer to cure; and removal can take 20 minutes or more.
Sure OPI GelColor sounds a lot like CND Shellac, a gel/polish hybrid which is thinner and takes less time to soak-off than Axxium Soak-Off Gel. But that won't stop me from giving it a go as soon as I can. (GelColor isn't a hybrid, by the way, it's gel.) How 'bout you?
UPDATE: I was careful in this post not to say outright that LED lamps means no more UV because some LEDs are UV types. LED UV lamps cure LED-sensitive gel faster than standard compact fluorescent UV bulbs, which is still a plus – in a comparison of 30 seconds in UV vs two minutes... well. Get details on LEDs and UV exposure here.
UPDATE 2: Official word is now that GelColor by OPI will hit salons in North America this November. The 28 shades will include neutrals, brights, darks, sheer and shimmer – see below.
P.S. There is also an Axxium Gel, a standard, clear UV-gel product that has to be removed via filing or Dremmel. It's not the same as Axxium Soak-Off Gel. They're pretty easy to tell apart, though -- the coloured gels are all soak-off.