Gelous is something that I’ve just started using at the continued recommendations of the girls over on the Makeup Alley nail board. Instant Artificials is something that I just bought yesterday, but is the same idea (and again, beloved by the MUA Nail Board), but it’s just there looking pretty in the picture, I haven’t actually used it yet. They are available pretty much only at Sally Beauty Supply, and really seem to be somewhat all purpose very thick polishes.
Gelous and Instant Artificials can be used at almost any point in the manicure. The Sally site recommends using them directly on the nail (something about bonding to the nail). I haven’t noticed a difference in wear if Gelous is applied over a treatment coat (I like Barielle Fortifying Nail Builder, when I’m having a lot of weakness or peeling issues I put that on first). I have noticed that a coat of regular base coat and then the Gelous results in a more smooth looking manicure that lasts an extra day or so.
Gelous also has a great 2nd life as a top coat for glitter polishes. Have you ever put on a great glitter polish, only to notice the next day that your top coat (even a thick one like Seche Vite) has been “eaten” by the glitter? A coat of Gelous over your glitter polish and then your top coat over that seems to do wonders. It smooths every thing out and makes the glitter really shine.
So, if you want at thicker polish look, to make your nails tougher or need something to go over a glitter polish, these are both great options!