Nail polish brands are really hard to compare, which is why every die hard nail polish fan has at least a few personal bests, not to mention a few best nail polishes she (or he) wouldn’t give up for anything! I’m not a huge collector but you know how it goes – a girl can never have just two nail polish shades! Thus the following list of all of my favorite nail polish brands and all the good (and bad stuff ) I’ve noticed while using their nail polishes. Enjoy!
The fact that this green brand is famous and available literally all over the world really does say it all, so if you haven’t tried anything so far, I suggest you most definitely do! Nail polishes are a great place to start, by the way, and unlike most European nail polish brands that are only three-free (do not contain DBP, Formaldehyde or Toluene), these nail polishes even beat Chanel’s five-free formula. No parabens, no silicones, mineral oils, camphor, acetone, xylene and another nasty-sounding thing I can’t even spell yet alone pronounce! And that’s IN ADDITION to the three-free mentioned above! Now, some may believe the lack of all these chemicals results in a watery, easy to chip, jelly formula but, surprisingly, that’s not the case at all! Furthermore, I found these nail polishes extremely resistant even without the base or top coat. They are one of those rare nail polishes I don’t have to refresh as they do not get gloopy with use and can be used literally until the bottle is completely empty!
Cons: No special effect toppers, holo or duochrome shades.
Well, I’m sure I’m not the only fan of this nail polish brand, right ladies? I mean, how can you not feel tempted by all of those beautiful colors! Essie is a big three-free brand too, which means you won’t have to worry about those super bad chemicals contaminating your body and living space! Now, as for the color selection, I’d say even the super spoiled die hard nail polish fans won’t be disappointed and I especially love the way the formula smooths itself as it dries so yes, a big plus for the quality as well! I’ve heard some shades are rather gloopy and hard to apply but I guess I’ve been lucky enough not to run into those. Some formulas are runnier than others, but it doesn’t make the application any less complicated or indicate uneven coverage.
Cons: Colors can sometimes seem different in the bottle (brighter, more shimmery, more opaque), which is why you should browse for swatches or samples before purchasing.
H&M definitely isn’t one of the best nail polish brands out there but it is a must-check if you’re looking for an amazing yet budget-friendly nail polish to fuel your addiction. Spending Cash With Carl, a wonderful deep electric blue, is what got my attention first and I’ve been browsing H&M for amazing, unusual shades ever since! They are affordable, super gorgeous, apply very nicely, dry in a heartbeat and usually don’t chip as easily.
Cons: I would suggest a good base as these tend to stain nails like crazy and are not amongst the list of three-free brands. Some shades are super durable, yet there are always some that chip in chunks so a quick top coat might not be such a bad idea.
Another super affordable nail polish brand you’re probably familiar with if you live in Europe! If not, don’t worry, I’m sure it won’t be long before they spread all over the world and we all get to enjoy their fabulous colors and all of those high-end dupes! Three-free, of course, just like most others of my personal best nail polish brands and unfortunately available in a very small number of countries! Some of them happen to be my neighboring countries so I can acquire a piece or two here and there – enough to keep me loving them, but too little for my inner shopaholic’s taste!
Cons: Some shades can be a bit brush-strokey, but not to the point where it ruins the whole look.
I haven’t been such a huge fan of this brand before, but come on – how can you not love the Twilight collection?! It’s affordable, big-three free and allows you to enjoy all of the popular trends without putting a huge strain on your budget! Oh and you know how Zoya has those nail polishes that are matte and frosty all in the same time? Well, Essence has a top coat that will give you the same effect and can be applied over any nail polish shade you want! Plus, I’ve seen a new gimmick – a nail polish with some kind of a tool you can use to create shapes that will change color and give you a spectacular DIY mani! Got to check that out!
Cons: Essence has come a long way and their formulas are getting better and better! They can’t be compared to significantly pricier polishes, although I don’t see that as a huge problem. Nothing a good base and top coat can’t fix, right?
I’m not that big of a Chanel fan but YSL…oh I literally have to slap myself every time or I’ll go broke before you can say “veggie burger”! I don’t own a huge collection, not even a medium-sized one (thanks to all that slapping, of course) but I find all of my babies absolutely gorgeous! The application, the color, the wear, everything is great and I even have a Rock & Baroque Duo that’s still as great as the first day, despite the fact that it has been sitting in my stash for quite some time!
Cons: As far as I know, YSL is still using harmful chemicals for their nail polishes. It could be a pro too because it gives me another reason not to buy as much, although it is totally unfair to the consumers. Chanel and Dior have switched to five-free formulas and you don’t see them complaining about it!
7. China Glaze
I love love love China Glaze and this last place is a pure coincidence, just so you know! They are as great as OPI, as fun as OPI, as famous as OPI yet still significantly cheaper, which allows me to buy almost three bottles of China Glaze for the price of one OPI. Not a bad trade off, you’ll agree, especially given the fact that you’re not really giving up the quality of the great colors!
Cons: I wish China Glaze was not so ridiculously overpriced in Greece so I could get my stuff here instead of bothering my friends and family in Serbia to pick stuff up for me.
What are your personal best nail polish brands and is there a special color you often buy double just to make sure you’ll never run out of it?