Sep 24, 2012

Nail Top Coats: Rimmel vs Sally Hansen vs Professional Nail Care

Few weeks ago I wrote a post about nail hardeners in which I compared Rimmel, Maybelline and Sally Hansen. For this week I would like to review and compare top coats. Every woman needs a good long lasting anti chip top coat, especially those of us who do a lot of chores around the house and have their hands always in contact with water. Most nail top coats promise to last for 7 days, even up to 10 days. But in my experience the most they can last without one single chip is 3 days, when applying one coat. So I have really stopped expecting my nail polish to last longer than 5 days on my nails because so many top coats have not maintained their promises. Now, what I want is a top coat which can at least last me 3 days but most importantly which dries fast and is not messed easily after being applied. After all we cannot really sit for 3 hours waiting the nail polish to be completely dry and solid. We need to keep on doing what we have to and that certainly involves using our hands. So below are 4 nail top coats I have been using for the past year which I am going to give you my opinions on.


This top coat was part of a manicure set I got as a gift about 2 years ago. Initially, I really enjoyed using this top coat especially on clear or very light nail polishes. I cannot really remember how long it lasted when applied on my nails because it has been a very long time since I last used it. However, I have been using it more on my toe nails and it does a great job at keeping my nail polish on for weeks. I guess it's because I wash my hands all  the time that my nail polish doesn't last as long on my nails as it does on my toe nails.


I initially hated this top coat because it used to solidify after drying in such a way that my nail polish would start peeling as a whole rather than chipping. Sometimes it would happen after one day and I would have to take my nail polish off. Then after few months using it, it stopped doing it. It might also be because I started applying thinner coats of nail polish and waiting longer before applying this top coat. Again this doesn't last on me more than 3 days without starting to chip. So it doesn't live up to the 10 days advertised on the bottle. Price 5.35 euros.


I discovered this mattifying top coat at the beginning of this Summer. I had no idea you could get a top coat which could make your nail polish matte. And I really liked to have that option. In fact, many times I don't like certain nail polish colours simply because of their shine and this top coat solves that problem for me. Plus it can really transform a nail polish colour by simply mattifying. In terms of how long it lasts, I must say this is the best top coat I have tried because it lasts even 4 days (vs 3 days with most other top coats). 

One thing I would like to add is that you must wait a little longer than usual before applying this top coat if you really want your nails to be mattified. In fact, if you apply it too soon the mattifying formula just doesn't work and your nails remain shining. Price 5.35 euros.


I really had high hopes and expectations for this top coat. Sally Hansen is a well known brand which many people rave about. So after trying the nail hardener, I decided to give this top coat a go. I thought it would make my nail polish last longer than 4 days, may be a week, but it doesn't do that for me. Today on my nails I am wearing a nail polish colour with the Sally Hansen top coat on my left hand and the Rimmel Matte Finish top coat on my right hand. I applied the colour and top coats last Friday and you know what, today I have only one chip and it's on the left hand where I am wearing the Sally Hansen. So I can conclude that the Rimmel Matte Finish top coat is better than the Sally Hansen Insta Dri in terms on how long it protects your nail colour from chipping.

I am definitely going to give Sally Hansen one more chance to wow me. Next time I will buy a more expensive top coat and see whether it works better. Price 4.99 euros.

The best top coat among the above 4, in terms of anti chipping properties, is in my opinion the RIMMEL ULTRA PRO MATTE FINISH mattifying top coat.

What about you, which is your favourite top coat? And does it make your nail polish colour last longer than 4 days without chipping? Let me know in the comments below.



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