What It Claims:
"Gel-Like shine and up to 11 days of shatterproof color (When worn with Colorstay™ base & top coats). Colorstay nail color formula is fortified with unique ingredients that provide high impact color and gel-like shine in fashion forward range of shades and finishes. This technology is based on a unique combination of resin and high molecular weight polymers designed to provide flexible, shatterproof color with excellent color retention and gloss."
Claims - True or False?
1) Up to 11 days of wear: Undetermined
2) Gel-like shine/Gloss: True (not be solely due to base)
3) Excellent colour retention: Undetermined
While I really like the practicality of the packaging, it looks and feels fairly cheap. It also looks a bit awkward. The cap is almost the length of my pinky and thumb, definitely the longest cap for a nail polish that I've ever seen or used. The length does give it an upper hand over other polishes, as it makes opening the bottle much easier compared to stubbier caps. It's made of a plain black plastic, which does not hinder the ease of opening the bottle. The bottle itself is a cylinder shape, so it's comfortable to hold in the hand while opening. The brush consists of two slim brushes placed together, which spreads the polish over the nail quite nicely and easily. It is similar in shape to the Rimmel Lasting Finish Pro brushes, only shorter and not as wide.The bottle lists all the ingredients, and the name of the polish is on the top of the cap.
This base comes in a grey, clouded shade which goes on clear. It goes on glossy and somewhat smooths over the ridges I have in my nails. The formula is on the thicker side but has very good flow. It seems to take a little while to dry compared to more liquidy bases, but I am able to apply my polish on top without waiting. I initially found that the polishes I tried with the base seemed to drag a bit. With one coat of the base I was also able to still visibly see my nail ridges and brush strokes. I do not know for sure if it affected dry time of the polish or not. With my first use of the base, I saw that my nails looked a bit ragged at the tips after the first day of wear. The back of the bottle indicates to use two coats. When I did try it with two coats I found that it looked much better. However, I found that the wear was still poor. I also felt like the polish didn't go on as opaque with this base.
I gave it another chance. This time around I made sure to really shake up the bottle well as indicated on the back. I then applied a layer onto all fingers and immediately went over to my nail colour. Compared to how it looked applied over my current L'Oreal base coat, the polish looked almost completely smooth. My ridges were barely visible, the only issue being a few bubbles from the polish itself (as the bubbles were also visible with the L'Oreal base, although less visible with this base). It looked super shiny. However, as with my initial trial, it wore poorly. Less than 24 hours and I had tip wear on all nails as far as I could tell. *Edit: the tip wear may have actually been shrinkage, although it was a bit hard to tell since it didn't occur until far later in the day and definitely looked like wear. Possibly a combination of both, but I do definitely think it was more shrinkage!
Very poor when used without its matching top coat. Maybe 1 day max before nails start to show wear.
Bang for your Buck:
I paid about $8.00CAD for this 11.7ml bottle. While it seems relatively affordable, the amount given is less than many other drug store and mid-range brands, so overall the price is not necessarily that much different than pricier DS polishes or mid-range polishes. Two coats are also better suited to this base, which means that the product may be used up quickly.
I was hoping that this base would work well, but I am fairly disappointed. I used it without its matching top coat, but I don't want to be bound to using a "set." If you are interested in the set, then check it out, but I cannot recommend this for use along with an existing top coat.
- Pros: Not too pricey, nice brush, good cap for easier opening, nice consistency, goes on easily. evens out ridges fairly well.
- Con: can cause dragging, didn't wear well, not given much product, can take a while to dry, seems to cause shrinkage.
Overall Rating: 2/5
Packaging Quality: 4/5
Would you buy this product again: No.