I’ve been looking for a product that will help my weak nails get stronger. Ever since I was young, my nails have been paper-thin, soft, they peel, and bend backwards. I have realistic expectations for any strengthening product; due to genetics, I know my nails will never be iron strong. Orly is a brand I trust, so I browsed their offering and came home one day with Tough Cookie. Tough Cookie by Orly contains extracts from the African Okoume tree; it claims to strengthen nails and help them grow within 2 weeks! Just apply one coat on clean nails (can be used as a basecoat for color), and one coat on top each day for 5 days; remove and repeat after 5 days. Easy enough, right?
I applied Tough Cookie as a basecoat, and waited for it to dry (it doesn’t dry smooth, more of a tacky, rubbery feeling). I applied my first coat of nail color and it bubbled within minutes. I removed it all and started over with a thinner basecoat of Tough Cookie. After that dried to a tacky finish, I applied my nail color, waiting for it to dry fully between each coat, and finished off with another coat of Tough Cookie. The darn stuff bubbled within minutes! Frustrated, I just left it and wore a bubbled, tacky feeling manicure for the first day. The following day, I applied another coat of Tough Cookie as directed. Three hours later, it began to peel off of my nails. Not chips mind you, whole fingernail-sized sheets. And repeat… I went through this routine for four days, re-doing my manicure each day only to have it peel off the next.
I was done, too frustrated to try again. I don’t have hours to baby my nails, and I certainly don’t want to re-do my manicure daily. I can’t comment on how well this strengthens or assists growth, because it wouldn’t stay on my nails longer than a day. I wouldn’t recommend this product to anyone at this time. I may try this routine out again in the winter time, maybe humidity had something to do with the results I had.