Loosen Up Cuticle Softener and Remover: This is a lotion/gel formula with a fairly thick consistency and little to no scent. I brush on a moderate amount, covering the cuticle at the base of the nail and the skin surrounding the nail. After letting it sit for a minute or two, I begin pushing the cuticle back with a metal cuticle pusher. I then wash off the product thoroughly using soap and water.
I normally use Blue Cross Cuticle Remover, although I have and use a number of other products for cuticle removal. Blue Cross has been the most effective for me so far in my search for the perfect concoction to magically erase my cuticles, while not harming my skin and nails. I found Loosen Up to be both gentle and effective, and while I don't see as much of the cuticle being removed during the process as I do with the Blue Cross product, the end result looks almost the same. I would say that Loosen Up leaves about 10-15% of the cuticle, while I get 100% removal with Blue Cross. It's not a big difference, but that's what I noticed. There are a couple of things I like better about Loosen Up though. The first is that my cuticle area and surrounding skin look and feel softer immediately after using the product. Secondly, the ease of application is evident because Loosen Up is thicker, so it's not running all over. I transfer my Blue Cross to a smaller bottle (one for hair color, actually) and place a few drops around each nail, but I always do it over the sink because it's very thin. I know some of you use it in a bottle with a brush, which I'll have to try sometime. All in all, I think Loosen Up is a decent product. I find it more portable than the Blue Cross, more softening, and while it's a little less effective, it does do a good job. The retail price for this product is $2.75 (0.5 fl. oz.) at Victoria Nail Supply, 8ty8 Beauty and several other eTailers.
Cuticle Soothe Conditioning Cuticle Oil: This product absorbs quickly and isn't as 'oily' as other similar products I've used. It has a light and pleasant almond fragrance and I apply it after a manicure around the nail's edge, or I apply it at night and massage it in until it's absorbed. This states that it's Botanically-infused, almond scented cuticle oil hydrates and conditions dry, cracked and sore cuticles. I find it to be both moisturizing and soothing, particularly after I've pushed my cuticles back a little too hard! It's not as heavily scented as Creative's Solar Oil, and I like that it absorbs faster than other oils. This retails for $2.75 (.05 fl. oz.)at Victoria Nail Supply, and $4.00+ on other eTailers.
Note on ingredients: I wanted to show you the ingredient lists for these products, but below is what the sticker on the bottom states--on both products. I can't believe that both products have the same ingredients, so I have contacted Color Club and will update my post as soon as I have an answer.
Ingredients: Butyl Acetate, Ethyl Acetate, Nitrocellulose, Adipic Acid, Neopentyl Glycol, Trimellitic Anhydride Copolymer, Acetyl Tributyl Citrate, Styrene Acrylates Copolymer, Stearalkonium Hectorite, Isopropyl Alcohol, Camphor, Benzophenone-1.
*Products featured were furnished by the manufacturer or PR firm for review.