Beauty, nails

Sally Hansen Double Duty Base & Top Coat 

When doing an at-home manicure, it’s so important to use a base coat and a top coat. The base coat will protect your nails from staining if you’re using a dark color, and it will create a nice, smooth canvas for the nail varnish. The top coat will add some shine to the manicure and will extend the life of the manicure by preventing chipping. Recently, I was walking around Walgreens and I found the Sally Hansen Double Duty Base & Top Coat for only $4, so I thought I’d give it a try.

I loved the concept of this product: why not simplify and have just one bottle that can do both jobs? Unfortunately, this one really fell flat for me.

My biggest complaint about this product is that it takes FOREVER to dry. Every time I used this product, I would try to be as patient as possible and let it dry for over half an hour. However, hours later, I would find strange smudges on the polish. I am not completely certain how this happened, but my theory is that the topcoat re-softens with heat, so you’re susceptible to smudges again after a hot shower or blow drying your hair or doing the dishes.

This has happened to me with other top coats as well, but it doesn’t happen with all of them (The Sally Hansen Insta-Dri top coat and the Seche Vite top coat are two of the best, in case you were wondering).

I was pleased with the level of shine that this top coat offers, but it did not seem to harden the nail or prevent chipping. I frequently still had same-day polish chips, which is just not manageable.

In terms of how this performed as a base coat, it was okay if you applied just a thin layer. It did smooth the nail and, even with very dark polish, there was no staining on the nail bed.

Overall, I was very disappointed with this product, and I won’t be repurchasing. However, I think this might be okay if applied to the nail by itself. After buffing the nail, this would add some shine to enhance a natural nail. It’s also an okay base coat, but I would not recommend this as a top coat over nail polish.

Have you tried this product, or do you have a favorite top coat? Be sure to let me know in the comment section!

Thanks for reading!

-XO Tiffy

Want more of me? Add me on  Instagram / Twitter.

Beauty, nails

Sally Hansen Cuticle Massage Cream 

Recently, I’ve been trying to take better care of my hands, especially the nail bed region. My cuticles get so dry and tear easily, so I wanted to try a product just for them. I ended up selecting the Sally Hansen Cuticle Massage Cream. This product is available at most drugstores and online for just $5.

First off, this product smells amazing. It’s fruity with top notes of apricot. That was definitely my favorite thing about the product. Other than that, I was a little disappointed. The formula felt so stiff, which surprised me. I was definitely expecting something creamier. As it was, it was a bit hard to use since you kind of have to dig in to get the product out. I suppose it wouldn’t be as difficult if you just wanted to rub your fingertip over it and use the light residue. That would definitely make the product last longer, but you also wouldn’t get as much moisturization power that way.

The product just didn’t moisturize as much as I had hoped. I’ve used cuticle oils in the past that worked much better, so maybe I should go back to that instead of using a cream like this one.

What do you use for your cuticles? I’d love to know! Feel free to tell me in the comment section.

Thanks for reading!

-XO Tiffy

Want more of me? Add me on  Instagram / Twitter.

Beauty, nails

Essie Nail Polish 

The other day, I was in Walgreens, and I noticed that they had a few essie nail polish colors on clearance, so I bought two of them! I went for a dark pink and a bright red because these are shades that I use all the time.

Essie nail polish will typically set you back $8.50 per bottle, which isn’t terribly expensive, but it’s still way more expensive than my favorite brand Sinful Colors (which you can get for $2). I remembered trying this brand several years ago, but I couldn’t remember how I felt about it. I wanted to give it another try because this is such a popular brand.

Unfortunately, I really hated the formulation of these nail polishes. First, I found the brush to be way too narrow for my liking. I much prefer a broad brush, but you might like this product if you prefer something very narrow. I also disliked the texture of the formula – it was almost too sticky and it was very difficult to apply. Now, to be fair, I did get two clearance bottles, so maybe they were so old that the formula was starting to go bad? In any case, they ended up looking kind of gloopy and they took forever to dry.

I think I’ll be sticking to Sally Hansen (they have broad brushes) or Sinful Colors (they have a very smooth formula that is easy to apply and dries quickly).

Have you used this product? What did you think? What are your favorite nail color brands?

Thanks for reading!

-XO Tiffy

Want more of me? Add me on Snapchat (tiffyrenee82) or Instagram or Twitter.

Beauty, nails

Pink Gel Coat – Perfect Formula

I have been on what seems like an eternal quest for the perfect sheer pink nail color. I wanted something that was just a wash of a pink tint. I did not want something light but pastel or anything remotely opaque. So, the other day, I was at my local Sephora (yes, they do know me by name at this point) and I saw that they had an intriguing product available for 100 beauty insider points. For those who don’t know, beauty insider points are like Sephora’s reward system. So, I decided to cash in some of my points for a bottle of Perfect Formula’s Pink Gel Coat.

I put two coats on my nails, and I got exactly what I wanted: a sheer, natural look with a subtle pink tint. It’s looks so shiny, and my nails felt instantly harder and stronger. I tend to go in phases where I want lots of bold colors and then I get tired of the maintenance and want something that’s pretty but easy.

So, should you buy it?

Pros: It has a great natural tint, and it really does make the nails harder. You could even use this as a base coat if you’d rather get the hardening benefits with a bolder color.

Cons: The price! After trying this product, I was so excited that I immediately wanted to buy a full-sized bottle. So, I looked it up on the Sephora mobile app, and this is $30 a bottle! I love luxury products, and I spend way too much on products (hello, VIB Rouge!) but even I cannot justify that price for a sheer nail treatment.

A few days after picking up this sample, I did stop by Sephora again (yes, I know I have a problem) and I redeemed more points to get another sample bottle because I really do love this look, but I won’t be purchasing this item. It’s a great product, but I’d rather spend $30 on something else – like lipstick or foundation. It’s just a lot of money to spend on a nail product that’s nearly invisible. Still, if you are intrigued by this product, there is a dupe that you can try – Sally Hansen’s Nail Treatment Natural Tint is only about $2.50 and it also gives a sheer wash of pink tint. I don’t think the tint is as noticeable/pretty, and I don’t think it makes my nails feel as hard, but you can buy TWELVE bottles for the price of ONE bottle of the Perfect Formula Pink Gel Coat.