I didn't need much convincing to try OPI Axxium Soak-Off Gel Lacquers ($30 to $50), a nail color applied in the salon that lasts at least two weeks. I picked one of the 34 shades (Bastille My Heart), and sat back as the manicurist painted my nails with gel base, polish, and top coat, using a UV light to set each layer. After about an hour, my nails were crimson, glossy, and impervious to purse riffling and BlackBerry tapping (not to mention nibbling). Once I notice chips, I'll head back to the salon to have my nails soaked in an acetone-based remover that lets the polish peel right off; but for now, three weeks later, the color is still beautifully intact.
Contributing assistant beauty editor Alessandra Foresto

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