Are you ready for this confession? I never used to use a top coat when I painted my nails I just couldn't be bothered with the extra step. Now I take my mani & pedi's very seriously and use a top and base coat every time without fail and I still haven't found the best base for me I am thinking of giving the CND Stick Base coat a try. Top coats are a different story however after the past few years and giving the best of them a go I think I have found and it is no surprise who the winner is for me. Matte nails aren't really my thing so anything that is going to give me a glass like manicure I have always got time for.
Sally Hansen (who isn't even a real person apparently) was my first foray into more expensive nail care and I have tried a fair few from the line but I find the Insta-Dri Anti-Chip top coat to be the best of them. Now it doesn't dry instantly it takes a good 20 minutes before I can properly use my hands again and I didn't notice it to particularly make my nails chip less either so I do sit a little on the fence on this top coat it isn't amazing but it isn't bad either. Then the little baby bottle at the end is the O.P.I Rapid Dry top coat which upon first application I did think it might be as good as the Seche Vite but then I went to bed and woke up with a very indented finish so clearly this isn't as rapid as it claims which is a shame. You are all aware at just how much I love Essie as a brand so I was excited to give one of their top coats a try and this is the Let It Shine top coat* and boy does it make your nails shine. I wish this was quicker at drying because it does leave a beautiful finish so I save this for pedicures as I find I can deal with them taking longer but for my fingers this is just no good as I am far too impatient. Finally of course is the Seche Vite Dry Fast top coat and believe me the rumours are true this is by far the best top coat you will ever use. Yes I know the ingredients aren't exactly the most desirable but as long as you aren't sat inhaling the bottle I don't see what damage it can do and if it was that bad would they be legally allowed to sell it? This gives the most perfect finish to any manicure it is like applying glass to your nails and it smooths out any uneven application too. I have even found a way to stop it becoming gloop central by the end of it so I actually managed to use my last bottle right down to the end which is an achievement and a half. I am going to say it is most likely the only topcoat I will use for years to come and for a complete nail polish junkie that is quite the commitment to make but my mani's need Seche Vite.
What is your favourite?