Happy Monday! I’m kicking off this week by doing the ultimate nail polish experiment. I have been getting lots of comments that our new nail polish collection, the Skylark Wild and Free Mini Nail Lacquer Set, has been peeling and chipping too quickly. I myself have noticed this when I have paired it with the Seche Vite base and top coat. So, while I was in Cabo with Ingrid I decided to test her top and base coats. I wore “Bdays in Cabo” with her Deborah Lippman Turn Back Time Base Coat and her Butter London P.D. Quick Hardware Top Coat, and it did not peel or chip for ages. It ended up lasting so long that Ingrid exclaimed, “This is a miracle polish!” Seeing as she is a total nail polish junkie I took this as a major compliment.
Now, even though Seche Vite is probably the most popular top coat, I have recently become aware of the harmful ingredients it contains. It contains toluene, which can be absorbed through your skin and can cause birth defects or reproductive harm. Even if you are not pregnant or trying to become pregnant this is worrisome. If it can hurt your unborn child it probably can do harm to you as well. In addition to the toluene it contains Formaldehyde and even has a warning label on the bottle. I have decided to stop using this, and instead will be reviewing base and top coats that are “Big 3 Free”. The “Big 3” refers to Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP), Formaldehyde, and Toluene. I am not sitting here telling you to discontinue the use of Seche Vite, as there is quite a bit of controversy surrounding whether those claims are reaching, but I think everyone should do their own research and decide for themselves.
So here is the Skylark Top and Base Coat Showdown. I went to Ulta and Bloomingdale’s and picked up a ton of base and top coats to experiment with. This is a run down of what I purchased:
Deborah Lippman Turn Back Time Base Coat: This base coat has a micronized diamond core powder that immediately diffuses the appearance of imperfections so that the nails become smoother and more even. It also reflects light, instantly giving nails a beautiful luminosity while minimizing the appearance of any yellowing or staining. This is Ingrid’s favorite, and after using it in Cabo I knew I needed to pick it up.
Butter London Nail Foundation Flawless Basecoat: This is referred to as makeup for your nails. Leaves a silk-finish, stain resistant, non-toxic base coat that is the perfect foundation for your nail color.
OPI Natural Nail Base Coat: I love and trust OPI, so I wanted to get this to compare.
Butter London Hardwear P.D. Quick Topcoat: This is the topcoat that I used in Cabo. It features a super-shiny finish for longer lasting manicures. Plus, the P.D. Quick stands for “Pretty Darn Quick” which I think is adorable.
Poshe Topcoat: This was recommended to me through twitter by lots of people when I asked for base/top coat suggestions. It is also meant to be super-fast drying.
OPI RapiDry Top Coat: Another quick-dry top coat that adds shine. Probably similar to those above, but I wanted options.
Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Anti-Chip Top Coat: I have used this before and liked it, so I thought I would include it in this experiment. This one claims to dry nails the fastest, in 30 seconds. Plus it claims no-chip shine for up to 10 days.
Also, I want to note that a twitter follower tweeted me a picture and said that her Skylark nail polish lasted for 8 days without chipping. I asked her what she used, and she said that she used no base coat, and Essie’s No Chips Ahead top coat. I don’t have this one to try but you can bet it is on my list next time I need a top coat! (Which will be ages, seeing as I just purchased lots).
Stay tuned for a video later on in the week documenting my experience with these top/base coats. I’m excited to have so many to try, and can’t wait to figure out what the best combination is! If you have a base/top coat combo that you adore, let me know in a comment!