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Wednesday, 11 June 2014

My Nail Routine: Base Coat and Top Coat Reviews

Hi guys,
So I'm seriously procrastinating studying and am doing blog posts instead. I just can't hack reading so much stuff and not googling on the side. Since starting studying this morning I've done my hair and my makeup, my nails were polished yesterday so I'm not adding to those yet. Looks like I'm blogging now. 

So I've wanted to do a nail post on my routine and the products I use to make my manicures last. I usually keep the same base for around 5 days and then take it off for a fresh mani and it's rare that I get more than a few tiny chips on my index finger during this time, so here goes!
I think the most important part to a manicure is prepping your nails properly. After removing your previous mani, you need to make sure your nail is clean! Swiping with remover doesn't always cut it because some removers have added moisturisers. You need to clean with something that has no moisturisers or oils. I clean my nails with either Essence's Gel Nails at Home Cleanser, or my facial cleanser (which is oil and moisuriser free) which happens to be the Clinique Clarifying Lotion. I find both of these to work really well. I don't use pure acetone because it's drying, but alcohol or something similar should work fine. This helps to remove all the oils and other residue from your nails before repainting. Since including this in my routine I've not had my nail polish peel off in one giant chunk.

After my nails are cleaned I then apply a coat of basecoat. I use China Glaze Strong Adhesion Basecoat. I've nearly emptied my second bottle and there's no sale on this at the moment, so I might need to resort to another base coat soon! I find the CG basecoat to be wonderful, I usally buy it off of Ozsale or Brands Exclusive when they have China Glaze in stock, I think I get it for around $8. The strong adhesion basecoat is slightly tacky or sticky when dry and works so well. When using this and my topcoat I get the best wear. I think it could easily do a week before getting too worn. I have done 10 days before so it is possible! The basecoat is a clear polish that's easy to spread around the nail. The only issue I have with it is getting to the last bit in the bottle, the brush really isn't long enough and I have to screw the cap back on to get enough polish on the brush. I also find that it hasn't thickened up too much either and there's only a wee bit left in my bottle.

After using around two coats of colour, depending on the polish, I top it all off with a coat of Poshé quick dry topcoat. I love this stuff! It's also 3 free. I have a bottle of Seche Vite that I've used once but the smell put of right away. Seche contains toluene which isn't the nicest of chemicals and I feel that I need to use it outside and hold my hands away from nose for like an hour. I find the dry time between Seche and Poshé to be very comparable. I usually wait at least 10 minutes before doing anything with my hands after applying the quick and then baby them for the next hour or so. I don't like dents and prefer to be safe than sorry. the polish is touch dry literally only minutes after application but that doesn't mean it won't dent.

My Combo Pack of Poshé
This is the pack I bought my Poshé in after emptying my first bottle that I bought in the US. The Professional Kit can be bought on Ebay, I paid around $30 including postage for the 2 Oz (~60ml) and 0.5 Oz (~15ml) bottles, that's a total of 5 bottles worth. I've used up 3 bottles of Poshé since becoming a nail addict last August. There are several issues with this topcoat, it gets very thick in the last third of the bottle and thinner doesn't do much to fix that. So I've been topping up my bottle when it gets to that stage. This minimises wastage and doesn't effect the new batch. Also, this polish can't be used for touching up an old mani, it will shrink the dry polish causing it to pull up at the edges, I hate it when this happens, it gets caught in my hair when washing it. Matte top coats also tend to do this. 

What I love about Poshé is the consistency. It's not super thin and feels like it provides a good barrier between the colour and the elements. The consistency of a new bottle is not my favourite, but after a few uses it becomes a bit thicker and is just awesome. When it starts to string, it's time to top the bottle up. I highly recommend Poshé as a quick drying topcoat and nayone who's serious about getting good results from their manicure should use a quick dry top coat.

So a quick recap on getting a mani that lasts and looks good:
- Prep your nails right before you add your new polish. They need to be clean and dry.
- Use a dedicated basecoat, this will protect your nails from staining and make your manis last longer.
- Use a quick dry topcoat, it will seal everything in, make it super glossy and dry your nails quickly thus preventing dents. 

Last tip of the day, to make your nails look professional, clean up around the cuticles. Use acetone and a thin brush to make a neat line around the cuticle and to get rid of nay stray polish, the effect is much nicer.

Any questions, let me know!

Pins, Patterns and Polish

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