On style, she rules

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 22 May, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 22 May, 2011, 12:00am


I'm rather of proud to be the sort of woman who doesn't have manicures, because I'm always using my hands, gardening, exercising, etc. I do sometimes wish I could have painted nails for longer than two seconds before they start chipping, so, when a friend mentioned something called 'shellacking' I was intrigued. Does anyone offer this in Hong Kong?

With Nails and I, Shek O

The Dictator rules: My dear, just because you're active, doesn't mean you can't be glamorous, too. And stop showing off, will you? You don't need ugly hands to prove your worth, but you should know a little bit more regarding what you're about to do to them. Developed by United States brand CND (www.cnd.com) Shellac mixes the principles of nail polish and gel nails, and is made from natural tree resin. It promises to last for two weeks and stays on until new nail grows, but can also be removed within 10 minutes. So, unlike normal acrylic or gel nails, it doesn't call for the nail bed to be filed down, or the laborious chemical removal afterwards. The product is applied then the hands are placed under an ultraviolet-light machine to harden it. After that, there's no restless drying time or fear of smudging. The Feel Good Factor (2/F, Winsome House, 73 Wyndham Street, Central, tel: 2530 0610; www.feelgoodfactor.com.hk) offers the Shellac manicure for HK$400 and the pedicure for HK$500, while repolishing costs HK$200. For similar services, you could also try the BonNail treatment offered at Qute Nail Salon (about HK$320 and up; 19/F, Coasia Building, 498 Lockhart Road, Causeway Bay, tel: 2833 1021). According to them, the treatment has the same properties as Shellac and a wide selection of colours. Or there's the Scratch Resistant Manicure at LaVal Nail Spa, which has a first-time offer of HK$168 (HK$228 for subsequent manicures; 12/F, Asia Standard Tower, 59 Queen's Road Central, tel: 2869 9863). Uh oh. I guess that means you have no more excuses.

I made the mistake of passing up a dress by Thread Social while shopping when I was home on holiday, and now I can't find one like it. Would you have any idea where I could find something like a trench coat but no sleeve?

Trouble in Trenches, Mid-Levels

The Dictator: Is that a typo, or do you really want me to recommend a trench with only one sleeve? Because, you know what? I can rise to that challenge. The cerebral Maison Martin Margiela offers a one-sleeve trench coat (HK$13,999; 10 Ice House Street, Central, tel: 2869 7707) as well as what we think you're really looking for, a sleeveless black trench-like dress (HK$9,299). But, if it's Thread Social you want, then just get it online. Ever heard of Net-A-Porter.com (duh; about HK$6,000 for the black and gold jacquard weave trench dress)? Here in Hong Kong, you'll see other collections clearly inspired by the trench coat, including Hanii Y, which has done an almost-black navy blue sleeveless interpretation in a crisp cotton/poly mix (HK$5,800; Lane Crawford, Pacific Place, Admiralty, tel: 2118 3668). If it's the structure that appeals, then you might like British designer Ted Baker's sleeveless suit dress in black (HK$2,600; Pacific Place, tel: 2918 9609).