Gel effect nail polishes have taken on a huge trend in the market and I understand why. After getting shellac and gel nails done previously it’s hard not to love how amazing your nails look. However, I find that my nails always end up destroyed and in horrible condition after getting gel or shellac off. This makes the cost of getting them done not worth it to me; which is why the Sally Hansen Miracle Gel nail polish line has been on my mind for months. While these nail polishes are on the pricier side in my opinion (around $10 per bottle) I love that Sally Hansen offers a “starter kit” that comes with a color and the topcoat for around $20 regular price. On sale I have seen the starter kit as low as $16 (I’ve found Walmart to be the cheapest at around $16 regular price!) and the polishes around $7-8. Their normal collection offers starter kits/ value pack in a nude, medium pink, and red and during limited edition collections they offer different colors in the kit (for example their current festival collection has a purple and a blue featured). The kit that I ended up purchasing is called Birthday Suit which is the nude that they offer as a value pack in their regular collection. I choose this color because I don’t have any nude nail polishes, as well as, it’s a color that I’d be able to get a lot of use and wear out of.
The first thing I noticed is that I love the brush. It’s a very wide brush that I’m able to cover all of my nails except my thumb with just one swipe. The first coat of this color didn’t have very much payoff and looked like it just neutralized my nail color. The second coat provided more color but the color was still a little bit streaky/blotchy in areas. Therefore, I opted to do a third layer which provided the opaqueness that I wanted. I’m a very impatient person when it comes to doing my nails and I felt like this color took longer than normal to dry. I actually had to redo a few of my nails because I kept touching things and messing up the nail. This is where this starter kit felt like it changed my life. The top coat was magical. After applying the topcoat my nails were so shiny and glossy I was amazed. I’m not sure if I applied too much of the top coat or it was because I wasn’t doing my nails in natural light but it seemed to take a very long time to dry as well. However, I loved the result that I got. Majority of my nails (the ones I didn’t have to redo) looked amazing. The shininess and even the thickness of the nail polish layers made my nails look as if I gotten them done with shellac in a salon.
Day 1: Nails still look as amazing as right after I painted them. I did get a few dents in the nails I redid as they were probably not as dry before I went to bed.
Day 2: No chipping and no wear on the tips of the nails. However, this is where I noticed the same problem that I have with the majority of nail polishes – cracking. All of my regular nail polishes (except for my Defy and Inspire one! Check out that review in my April Ipsy Glam Bag) will show cracking a day or two after I apply the polish. Now this polish showed large cracks opposed to some of my other polishes where the whole tip of the nail has a shattered pattern across it. The cracking is only noticeable up close so it’s not too big of a deal especially since I do a lot work with my hands and my nails take a fair beating daily.
Day 4: No further signs of wear on the tips of my nails even after them going through a paintnight. Some more cracking noticed though.
Day 6: Some more minimal wear on the tips of the nails. Some chipping at the base of the nails closer to cuticle. Cracking is significant and noticeable at arms length.
Day 10: Is the day I decided to take the polish off. The main reasons being because of my job and I just couldn’t stand to look at the cracked polish any longer. By the 10th day the tips had less wear compared to the base of the nails and they didn’t seem as shiny as the first week. I completely believe that this nail polish could last 2 weeks. Keep in mind I did use three coats of color and one coat of topcoat. I will pick up new colors or try and test it again with only 2 coats of color and a layer of the top coat for more accurate results.
The Removal: This polish is meant to come off with regular nail polish remover. I found that while nail polish remover worked, it was more difficult than regular nail polish. I just did the simple pour some remover onto a cotton pad and scrub it off which took me forever. I’d recommend placing cotton soaked in remover onto the nail and then wrapping it up with tin foil as a more effective method.
Final thoughts: I loved this! It’s a method that takes time to do but the results are worth it. I definitely want to pick up more shades. If you’re someone who uses their hands a lot or struggles with nail polish always chipping I’d give this a try! Even though I find the nail polishes to be pricier than most at the drugstore I think the price is worth it.