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How do I Choose the Best Nail Polish Products?

By Mandi R. Hall
Updated May 17, 2024
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When choosing nail polish products, consider which ones will benefit you personally. When choosing products such as nail enamel, base coats, and top coats, it helps to gather as many reviews as possible first. Look for nail polish products that suit your style and coloring, and can address any problems you may have with dry nails, yellow nails, or split nails.

The best nail polish products are suited to your skin hue. While pinks look good on most everyone, purples look best on cool skin tones, and oranges look best on warm skin tones. Don’t forget about your toes. Because they are generally covered up, trying a new hue on your toes first may be a good idea.

Yellowing nails can be a problem for some women. Discolored nails can be a sign of a medical issue, such as fungus or diabetes. A dermatologist can treat these nails with a prescription or suggest a change in diet to address the problem.

Manicurists can recommend the best nail polish products to aid yellowing nails. Usually experts will suggest some type of nail-whitening product. If you don’t feel comfortable doing your own nails, ask a manicurist to apply a whitening base coat before she applies your preferred lacquer color.

Some nail polish products are manufactured with whitening pigments to make nails appear brighter. Women who often wear dark nail polish for long periods of time are prone to have yellow-hued nails. You may choose to use the whitening products or to whiten your nails naturally. Leaving the nails polish-free for a few weeks will give the fingernails time to grow out into their healthy pinkish hue in a natural manner.

Other nail polish products are manufactured for those with nails prone to peeling. This ailment differs from dry, flaky nails. Nails that peel a lot generally suffer from dehydration and general dryness. In such cases, look for nail polish products that offer additional moisturizers.

If you have a nail-biting problem, one of the best nail polish products you can buy is a bitter coat. These products are on the market specifically for people who bite their nails. Those who can’t seem to break this bad habit turn may turn to this clear or colored nail product with an extremely bitter taste to discourage nail biting.

Beauty supply stores are your best bet for the best inexpensive, efficient nail products. Most nail products can be purchased from the local drug or department store. Many salons will also sell manicure and pedicure products.

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Discussion Comments

By kylee07drg — On May 31, 2012

I know they have been on the market for awhile, but I only recently discovered nail art pens. This is what I have been needing, because I’ve been using the brush inside the polish bottle to make designs, which isn’t very easy.

With nail art pens, I get more precision. The tip is narrow, and once I press it down, the color starts to flow. I can make polka dots by just pressing lightly, or I can hold it down and drag to make lines.

I can now paint white daisies on top of my pink polish with ease. Before, I made a big mess, but my nail art now looks like those press-on stickers you can get.

By Oceana — On May 30, 2012

@OeKc05 - Clear polish doesn’t work well as a base coat. I have tried it, and my polish didn’t cling to it the same way.

A base coat is designed to be sticky so that polish will cling to it. Even after it dries a little, it still has a strange feel to it, which is why people don’t wear it on its own.

Putting colored nail polish on top of clear polish is just like adding a second coat. If you put two colored coats on, you actually have three coats of polish, and this may cause your manicure to chip off more quickly. The more layers you pile upon your nails, the easier it is for them to chip.

By OeKc05 — On May 29, 2012

I buy nail polish every time I see an odd shade that I don’t already have in my collection. I skip the ordinary reds and pinks and opt for colors like turquoise and yellow.

I will go for any bold shade of polish, but I avoid frosts. They don’t show up by themselves, even if you put on three or four layers. I like polish that can stand alone and shine brightly with just two coats.

Because I use such eccentric colors, I usually apply a base coat underneath to prevent my nails from getting stained blue or purple. I am about to run out of base coat, though, and I’m wondering if I could just use my clear nail polish underneath instead?

By shell4life — On May 29, 2012

I got tired of waiting for my nail polish to dry completely, so I bought a quick-dry clear polish meant to be used as a top coat. It doesn’t go on like regular top coats, though. It is really fluid, and a little goes a long way.

This stuff dries in under a minute, and it somehow makes the polish underneath dry faster, too. I don’t apply it immediately after doing a coat of polish, though. I wait about a minute to give it time to harden up a little, and then I slather the stuff on.

It makes my polish harden more quickly. Though drying may only take a minute, hardening can take an hour. With this stuff, though, it only takes minutes.

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