I am really impressed! I was running dangerously low on Seche Vite and I saw this at the pharmacy and thought I'd give it a try. I actually like it more than SV!
It dries quickly, but not AS quickly as SV.
The tradeoff, however, is that you get much less shrinkage with Quo. I was always annoyed by the shrinking with SV as it made touchups look messier and I was often tempted to file my nails after the nailpolish dried.
It is shiny, and it dries hard.
It isn't the cheapest topcoat you can find, but it's a little less than SV and for the quality I think it is a fair price.
The brush is good and it applies easily. The frostiness of the bottle appeals to me, also.
It lasts as long as the other good quality topcoats I've used, so no complaints there, either.
The smell is less strong that SV which I also appreciate.
Basically, it's like SV without the shrinkage.
This top coat is outstanding; I have purchased it with the Quo by Orly Base Coat - Rubberized (which I LOVE!) and my nail polish lasts a week without having to be redone! The top coat has a beautiful shine and protects your nails (even the tips) from chips. It drys very quickly and you only need one coat to get results. The consistency is great and it doesn't seem to get syrupy after a while (and i have had it for about 5 months). I will buy it again!
I love this as a top coat because it dries SO fast. For the price paid, I think the bottle is a little on the small side. It started to thicken after many uses, but I just added a couple of drops of polish thinner. The brush isn't the best, and it takes a bit of time to get used to using it, but because this top coat dries super fast and leaves my polish really shiny, I would buy it again.
* Update August 2012: For whatever reason the top coat just doesn't want to work for me anymore. It still dries great and is fairly easy to apply but for some reason it keeps bubbling, whether applied over wet or dry polish or bare nails. This is after having thinned it out, so I'm thinking that the formula may simply not work well with nail polish thinner. Because the bottle thickens quickly enough I would not repurchase.
* Update April 2012: After trying another top coat and not getting nearly the same results as this one, I've decided to give it another try. I believe that the shrinkage had more to do with my past base coat which I've since switched out. I'm testing out my original bottle and it is quite thick, but even so seeing how fast my nails dry and how smooth it looks makes the issue worth looking past. I'm hoping to buy some polish thinner soon which will hopefully solve these issues. Changed back to a "yes" for repurchasing, remaining a 4/5 rating overall. Will do an entire overhaul of review once I am able to buy some thinner and once I've used it more with my current base coat.
What it Claims:
"Fuses together with polish to create a powerful layer of durable lasting colour with a quick-dry, high shine finish."
Claims: True or False?
1) Durable lasting colour: True
2) High-shine finish: True
3) Quick-drying: True.
The bottle came in a small cardboard box, which while looking neat and pretty is a bit of a waste. The top coat itself has a long black rubberized handle, which feels very comfortable in one's hands and makes opening a breeze. A large Q is stamped on the top of the lid. The bottle itself is a frosted glass that is slightly rounded on all four sides, and the brush is on the slimmer side; wider than Essie but definitely slimmer than OPI. I've never used Orly polishes, so I cannot compare the brushes. One nit-pick is that the brush may not be evenly cut on all bottles, so check beforehand if this will be an issue for you (does not affect application).
Definitely a thicker consistency, and I did find it to be a little trickier to apply initially, as all other top coats I've used have spread very easily and were much more liquidy. This is simply a matter of needing to use it more often to get a hang of application. No colouring, but it does initially lighten the shade before the coat completely dries, at which point it darkens up again. Dries and hardens very quickly, even on thicker nail polish. I've not yet used a top coat that hardened quickly (within 10 minutes I'd say), so I was quite pleased!
Edit: It seems that after a while of use, the polish has thickened just slightly and is possibly causing some shrinkage. I've never experienced shrinkage before, but I'm fairly sure that this is what is occurring. I will be trying out a new top coat and taking comparison pictures. I'm not sure if this polished thickened (just a bit though) because of the formula or because the packaging was not tight enough to seal all the air out, but either way it does seem to be trickier to use now. It could be saved with polish thinner, but I don't know how that would affect the top coat's drying time.
So far, it seems to work very well at keeping the polish from chipping or getting any major wear quickly. I'm guessing it could probably help prolong wear for more than a week depending on the polish.
Bang for your Buck:
14ml or 0.48 oz for $10.00CAD at Shoppers Drug Mart; purchased on sale for $7.00CAD. This is definitely a pricier offering, although most who shop at Shoppers will know that Shopper's brands are often on the pricier side compared to other drug stores. Seems to be similar in price and product amount as brands such as OPI, so it's definitely not a big splurge.
When first purchased, I really loved this top coat! I've never been one to care much for top coats or bother using them, but this one offered some great advantages to going sans top coat. Sadly, it seems that the formula has fallen prey to thickening and thus does not work as well as it originally did - I don't think I've had it for more than 2-3 months. I still would recommend it to others to try out and to see if they experience any differences, but overall I'll not be repurchasing.
Overall Rating: 4/5
Packaging Quality: 5/5
Would you buy this product again: Yes