Friday, 20 January 2012

Inventory#4: Nail Top 'n Base Coat (with Comparison)

Etude House Base Coat +1 in use
Essie Ridge Filler +1 in use
Nubar Foundation Base Coat +1 in use
OPI Nail Envy Original +1 in use

Seche Vite (professional refill +1, empty bottle +1) 1 in use  
Essie matte about you 1 in use
Essie good to go 1 in use
Bourjois Gloss-set (+1)

Besides top and base coat I'm gonna throw in those quick dry things, polish thinners, and 1 cuticle oil.  Here they are:

OPI Drip Dry drops 1 small 1 big in use
Orly Flash Dry drops (+1) 1 in use
OPI RapiDry spray (+1)
Essence express dry spray 1 in use

Nail Art thinner 1 in use
Seche Vite Seche Restore (should be a big size but the bottle broke and a lot was wasted) :'(
FSP Used Nail Refresher #30 1 in use

OPI Avoplex Cuticle Oil 1 in use


Below are the few words I have written back in Oct'11, basically some short reviews or comparisons amongst the nail stuff.

Good base and top coats are essential to good nail paint jobs, so I would like to write up a short comparison/review talking about the ones I have on hand now (or recently finish up!).  I didn't put too much thoughts when I took the pictures hence the order is about mixed up, i'll just go on with the random order so please bear with me!
  • OPI Natural Nail Base Coat - I think I have used up two full bottles of this at least.  It is a very nice basic thin fast-drying top coat that I feel gives a tiniest hint of pink - to cancel out some yellowish tint you may get if you paint your nails too often.  It doesn't fill in un-even nails or make nails strong or anything but good for healthy, ok-condition nails. 3/5
  • OPI Rapid dry Top Coat - Don't like this.  I have a few of these that comes in the mini-sets but they are quite thick and dry up way too quickly (in the bottle!) 1/5
  • Seche Vite - see below.
  • Essie good to go Top Coat - Pretty good!  I like this as much as the Seche Vite.  Both of them dries up quite soon, meaning they get thick and glue-y in the bottle about half-way through the bottle; and probably no longer useable after 3/5 or 3/4 is gone (like the one pictured, is actually too thick to work with already...)  It gives high shine, lasts long and keep your polish fresh and in one-piece for a good few days, but at most a week from my experience. 4/5!

  • Etude House Base Coat - You may not see in this flash light but it actually has a very faint purple tint to it.  It kinds of acts like the pink tint in OPI natural.  I picked this up when I was in Korea this June.  The bottle is adorable and the content is okay.  Not much to say on it but definitely a pleasure to look at/use :) 3/5
  • Nubar Foundation Base Coat - Basically the same thing as OPI Natural with a pink tint and quick-dry, thin texture, but I kind of feel this is better quality.  Just an impression or 6th-sense-kind-of-thing but I like this better.  FYI, I use up base coats quite quickly.  I think I will repurchase this one instead of the OPI just because I am a bit bored of the OPI natural after a few bottles. Hehe. 4.5/5 
  • Bourjois High Shine Top Coat - Got this in a manicure set and haven't yet tried this. :P No Rating yet.
  • Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat - One of the most famous top coats in our era, perhaps?  This smells really bad, like traditional solvent that reminds me of renovation and paint.  It works brilliant though, so unless I read more about the harmfulness of it, or that I become sick or pregnant, I will continue to use this.  Note: I have a giant salon refill size bottle in my stash.  That one has a dropper and is used to refill these medium size bottles... crazy me! 4/5

  • Essie matte about you Matte Top Coat - I would say this is definitely just a cult/trendy thing.  I do not love the effect of matte nail colours on my fingertips.  Anyway, this does the mattifying job well (and does shorten the lasting time of polish on your nails!) and pretty fun I should say!  3/5
  • Essie Ridge Filler Base Coat - A nice milky base for filling uneven nails.  My mum has brittle and ridge-y nails and finding good basecoats for her is one of my jobs.  This is okay, not too impressive but so far so good on her.  Plus the slight milkiness helps the polish that goes on top to show their colour better.  Not the most easy to spread product though, compared to other base coats I have used. 3/5
  • Nail Nail Peel off Base Coat - A random Japanese base coat I got a few years back.  It claims to help you peel off your nail polish in 1 go, so that you do not have to use nail polish remover.  Sounds like a lovely idea - but I peel off most of my nail polish after a few days wear anyway, so this is kind of redundant to me.  Plus, it slightly makes the polish application on top to be a bit less-smooth.  Just a gimmick product in my opinion. 2/5
Others: (not pictured)
  • OPI Nail Envy base coat - Very nice indeed, does harden and protect the nails as a base coat and smooths the surface as well.  Isn't as thin and clear as the OPI Natural or Nubar Foundation but not as creamy and thick as Essie Ridge Filler.  4.5/5
  • OPI Top Coat - Just the very very plain and basic Top Coat.  I find this doesn't give enough gloss and shine as the Essie good to go and Seche Vite, and it dries super slowly!  I have a feeling this dries even slower than my normal nail polish.  Without adding anything to my nail polish, and extending the dry time, no reason for me to go back to it! 0/5

Out of the many, I think I will only be repurchasing the OPI Nail Envy, Nubar Foundation, Essie good to go.  The rest I will just use them up and that's it.

In the future, I really want to try the  
  1. Orly Bonder (base), Orly In a Snap (top), 
  2. Nubar Diamont Seal 'n Shine Topcoat, 
  3. Essie Firstbase (base), 
  4. Sally Hansen Mega Shine (top), Sally Hansen Diamond Strength hardener (base), Sally Hansen Insta-Grip Base coat, 
  5. Nail Tek Ridge-Filling Base Coat Foundation III and 
  6. Creative Nail Design (CND) Sticky Base Coat...  
Whao.  What a list.

Have you tried these base/top coats?  What do you think about them?  Do you have other recommendations for me to try?  Tell me below!  I really appreciate that!



    1. This is the most informative post I've ever read on top&basce coats! I'll have an eye on Seche Vite whenever I decide to get more serious with my nail polish routine ;)

    2. @cbsg5861 Thanks! Seche Vite top coat makes your polish look really really smooth and shiny. Just make sure you read the controversy on the ingredients online :P


    3. I don't ever wear base coats. No wonder my nails chip all the time.

      1. I'd say both a good top coat and base coat is essential to make nail colours stay put! ;) cheers.

    4. Thanks for this post! Very useful! I have to use a base coat or else my nails will turn yellow!

      1. thanks jamilla. well actually that also depends on how strong (destructive) your colour nail polish is! But i'd say with strong colours, say dark red, it is even better to put two thin coats of base coats! ;)



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