Friday, April 22, 2011

Guest Blogger: Krista's take on fast dry top coats

Good news polish friends! Today I have a guest blog post from my friend Krista, who I recently found out is quite a lacquer lover. She expertly reviews various quick dry top coats. As someone who worships the shrine of Seche Vite, it's nice to know there are other options out there. 

Confessions of a Perpetual Manicure Ruiner, OR the Never-Ending Quest for the Perfect Top Coat...
In an effort to be more budget-conscious, I’ve recently forgone professional manicures in favor of doing my own nails at home.  In addition to saving me about $12 plus tip per manicure, this move has several collateral benefits.  One, I can justify my insatiable need to buy bottles of nail polish.  Two, I can satisfy my (self-diagnosed) nail polish ADD without feeling guilty about ruining a pro paint job.  And three, and probably most important of all, I spare myself the inevitable frustration of doling out cash right before chipping/smudging my nails 3 seconds after I walk out of the nail salon.  If there was an award for Worst Maintenance of a Professional Manicure, I’d win, hands down.
This leads me to an important mission, however - finding the perfect quick-drying (because I am NOT a patient person), chip-resistant, SHINY topcoat (not into the whole matte finish look, sorry).  To date, I’ve yet to find my holy grail top coat, the one that will give me at least 5 days of shiny, chipless nails.
In my quest to find the perfect top coat, I’ve conducted both online and hands-on (haha, pun intended) research.
Several top coats make repeat appearances among the beauty bloggers and YouTube gurus that I follow, the most popular definitely being Seche Vite ($8, available at CVS, Ricky’s NYC, and other beauty/drugstores).  My new favorite spa in Hoboken (and the last place where I went for a professional manicure) uses this as their house top coat, and I have to say I was impressed with the thickness and chip-resistance of Seche Vite.  However, online reviewers have often complained of shrinkage and the smell of the top coat.
In the past, I’ve found that good old-fashioned Sally Hansen Hard as Nails (you know, the inexpensive clear top coat in the extremely dated-looking bottle) is extremely chip-resistant.  (Although, interestingly enough, I’ve found that when I use this as a base coat, my nails chip the next day.)
Recently, I’ve been using Essie Good to Go! ($8), which is basically Essie’s version of Seche Vite - a thick, shiny, quick drying top coat.  So far, I’m pretty impressed.  I have noticed a tiny bit of shrinkage, but I’ll take shrinkage over ginormous chips any day.  Also, it suffers from a little bit of an obnoxious odor similar to Seche Vite, but once the nails are dry, it’s not noticeable.  Good to Go! is extremely quick drying, which I love - it means I can paint my nails before bed without worrying about waking up with sheet marks and smudges on the surface of my nails.  I purchased my bottle from, but it’s also available at Target, Ricky’s, and online retailers.
One of my favorite YouTubers, missglamorazzi, raves about Sally Hansen Mega Shine Topcoat ($8), which she strongly prefers over Seche Vite.  It was on my list of products to try out for awhile, when I happened to find it in my local Bed Bath & Beyond for way less than it costs at Target and CVS.  Thanks to my endless supply of BB&B coupons, I ended up paying only $3.93!  (Oh, how I love a bargain).  I used it that night, and my manicure lasted 4 days with VERY minor chippage on my right hand (which is my dominant hand, so no suprise there).  It probably would have lasted even longer, but I got bored with my nail color and had to change it, so a longer experiment will have to be conducted at a later date.
What’s your go-to top coat?

1 comment:

  1. Mega Shine was my favourite top coat for so long but Ive grown tired of it getting ridiculously thick before Im half way through the bottle so Im on the search for a new top coat too. I hate shrinkage so Seche Vite is out of the question to me.

    Im running a challenge to try and find the perfect top and base coat combination trying 6 different brands of each...Im hoping somewhere in those 36 combos will be the perfect answer!



Related Posts with Thumbnails