Is there anything more disappointing than lusting after a product for weeks, if not months, to find that when it does eventually become yours it’s just a little bit naff? All of the time spent debating over the price-tag and the anticipation you felt whilst waiting for the postman to arrive suddenly just isn’t worth it because your new beauty buy simply doesn’t live up to its claims. Well that’s exactly how I felt when the Ciaté Chalkboard Manicure kit became mine to test and trial till my heart was content and unfortunately, it wasn’t content for very long.
I know nail art isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, especially something as ‘oh so un-chic’ as this chalky childlike concept but when it comes to my nails, I like to have fun and play around with cutesy, colorful designs. From the offset, this manicure looked foolproof. All it should take is a quick coat of the black matte Chalkboard Paint Pot and then you’re free to go doodle crazy with the highlighter-style pens provided. Simple right? Well not quite. You’re advised to give the pens a little shake and to lightly dab them onto a firm surface to release the flow of polish inside, however, the pens took so long to start working that I thought they had dried up. I had to dab so hard to get one pen started that I pressed through my piece of paper and onto the arm of my sofa where a blue stained dot still remains to this day...taunting me.
When I began to use the pens on my nails, I found it nearly impossible to create any sort of neat, clean design as the nibs were just far too thick. They dragged the colour around my nail, making it look smarmy and stained, like a chalkboard which had been left outside a pub on a rainy day. I’m not the most artistic person but even I should have been able to create something simple yet effective. After a frustrating sixty minutes I admitted defeat and sealed my designs with the Mattnificent Matte topcoat from the pack.
My nails attracted plenty of attention at work the next day and I must admit that although they did look okay from a distance, I cringed a little when anyone asked to see them up close. And if it wasn’t bad enough, the varnish had already started to chip on the first day of wear. Not good!
It’s a shame that the kit was such a let down as Ciaté usually have a great range of products and this had the potential to be really good. After trialling it, I chucked it in the back of my cosmetics draw with the same disheartened feeling I used to get as a child when my attempt at one of Neil Buchanan’s Art Attacks had gone terribly wrong. It’s not often I say this about a product but this one’s really not worth a go.