**UPDATED REVIEW** So originally I wanted to use this as a clear polish on my fingernails. It didn't work well because it is supposed to bond with polish that is already there. This is why it can sometimes remove a little of the polish underneath in order to bond better. When used over the top of polish it does make a huge difference to the shine and wear of my polish.
I consider this a similar product to Sally Hansen's Insta Dry, in that it dries fast and provides a thick top coat which extends the wear of polish. In fact if I need Insta Dry and it is out of stock, I turn to Mega Shine as an alternative. I would absolutely buy this again.
**ORIGINAL REVIEW** I got this for free when I purchased a bottle of Lacquer Shine polish. As a top coat, this did make my toenails extra shiny and dried very fast. I guess this isn't supposed to be used as a base coat (I'm thinking that it needs a layer of polish underneath to bond to) as when I applied this to bare nails, within 12 hours it was peeling off. I don't wear colored polish on my fingernails so I thought that this product would make a nice clear polish. I applied three coats and less than a day later, the polish on 9 of my fingers had come off entirely, like a false nail. Right now I only have the polish on my left thumb remaining. Not a very stylish look! It is really shiny though but useless at anything other than a top coat. Won't be buying this, but I will continue to use it up on my toes.
It's the worst stuff EVER. When I applied this top coat on my freshly polished nails, it pulled the polish off so that the brush picked up the color and left streaks. I thought it's my nail polishes' problem as I always waited for at least an hour before top-coating, so threw 3 nail polis bottles out before I realized it's the SH top coat's problem!
It dissolves the nail polish coat somehow.
I use a very thick coat of this (as per the bottle's instructions) and let it glide over the nail. I apply it over wet nail polish (after waiting maybe a minute max). With some drying drops on top, it is dry and touch-able within minutes. Without drying drops I would probably have to wait hours, since I apply this over 1 basecoat and 2-3 coats of colour.
It is glossy and shiny, but not 'gel-like', which is what I'm really looking for. I haven't found anything better. I think the thicker the coat you apply, the better in terms of shine. It also helps to have even nails (or use a ridge filler) and make sure the nail polish underneath is as smooth as possible.
This is the best top coat I have ever used hands down. Better than any HE item, better than any boutique nail polish company's products. I have bought 3 bottles of this because for some cursed reason I keep mis-placing them!!! which is annoying because this stuff isn't that cheap ($7.50-$8). I did have a $2.50 off coupon for it today which makes it only $5 so really not an expensive item.
This is the only top coat I have used that is thick and gelatinous enough to not scratch my nail polish and pick up color onto the bristles of the brush when I apply. I always wait a good 20 minutes before I put on top coat to make sure the polish underneath is really dry but EVERY OTHER top coat i have used still picks up color onto the brush and messes up my manicure. This top coat hides all imperfections and gives a super shiny, straight from the salon look.
The only thing that would improve this if it would dry faster. Otherwise I am very happy with this and will continue to buy it. I am certainly no nail expert so there may be better products out there but this is the best of what I have tried and I have tried a few different OPI top coats, Revlon top coats, Chanel for Fu$k's sake, and many other sally hanson top coats. (her quick dry ones are ok, but they really aren't that quick drying and they dont create the shine that this does). I definitely am surprised by the negative reviews but hey, to each his own. For me this is the only top coat I will use until i find something better for the same price. and I kind of doubt that will happen....
I really don't get all of the great reviews for this, because it's the worst top coat I've ever used. I've purchased this on two separate occasions and have tried to use it dozens of times and I regret it every time I apply it. This top coat does nothing to extend the life of my nailpolish, and it actually makes my polish peel off. It's the strangest thing. After I apply this top coat, my polish curls up on the ends and just peels off, leaving nothing behind. This stuff has ruined so many polish applications for me, but I'm finally just giving up on it and tossing my last bottle. It does give off a smooth, shiny finish, but that only lasts about five minutes after drying, and then the peeling begins. I never have peeling when I use any other top coats or products. This stuff is just awful.
i've tried a few top coats and some of them i did not like because i experienced shrinkage. however this one does now. i've compared it side by side with some of my other top coats and its the shinest one. i find that it doesn't necessarily extend the life of my polish or keep it from chipping but its great for the shine. however one other note, i don't think its quick drying at all, but its not really marketed as a quick dry top coat anyway. i would consider rebuying this product when i run out.
- This could be one of the better drugstore topcoats, but its not the greatest. I bought this one based on word of mouth that this is a good top coat.
- It has a good consistency and it hasn't dried up on me like Sally Hansen's strengthening multi-coat. I've had this one for approx. one year
- For abour $4.99 CAD, this is an overall GOOD top coat.
Best use = application over polish that has already fully dried.
I applied Sinful Colors in Vacation Time around 10am. Went to bed around 11pm, so the original polish had 13-ish hours to dry - still woke up with hashmarks from the sheets - so annoying!
I then applied the Mega Shine around noon the following day, which immediately removed/disguised the damage! The polish looked AWESOME. The original polish was applied now 5 days ago and other than some tip wear, looks nice. I really want to paint them a new color, but I'm committed to seeing just how long this application will last.
Also, I had 9 day old red creme polish on my toes - added the Mega Shine yesterday and within 3 hours needed to put on sneakers - the polish was completely dry and the socks & shoes haven't left a single mark.
As most people have noted - the bottle is terrible. There's no telling how much is left, so if you were right in the middle of application and suddenly discovered it was gone or too thick with age, that would not be cool. A clear bottle, or at least a strip open along the edge would solve this one issue.
Nail products are, mysteriously, like mascara, super, super subjective. One person's ideal top coat, polish, or base coat may not work for another and may even cause serious problems. In my search for a holy grail top coat, I pooh-poohed Sally Hansen for a while, using lots of Poshe and Seche Vite, but ultimately SH Insta-Dri and Mega Shine really won me over. In my experience, Mega Shine is somewhat like Barielle manicure extender. It's great for prolonging wear time, but it doesn't dry multiple coats of polish super quickly. If I have the time, I wait for my polish to nearly-dry before using Mega Shine. If I don't, I use SH Insta-Dri. In any case, I apply Mega Shine every subsequent day or two of my mani to keep my nails super glossy and protect the coat. It doesn't shrink on me and I can get days out of finicky dark cremes with only slight tipwear. Mega Shine doesn't drag on the nail and has my favorite type of brush: flat, rather wide, but not the widest I've seen. My only issue, and it's a big one, is that the opaque bottle renders it impossible to tell how much topcoat is left in the bottle. A clear, rounded bottle would be much less annoying as it runs low.
Have you ever looked at your nails and wished that you could shellac them? I have. My nails always chip during the first day no matter what I use. This was the answer to my problem. I find it to be rather quick drying. Ok, so it isn't as fast drying as Seche Vite or Insta-Dry but it is pretty fast and it works better. I slightly buffed my nails, applied a base coat, two coats of nail color, and used this top coat. The results were strong, chip free nails. It also gives my nails a nice shine. The shine is not over the top but it works for me. I found this lil beauty hiding in the bottom of my nail polish bin. I forgot all about it. I have rediscovered it and now it is my "go to" top coat.