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16 Comments

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Lizzie - IsolatedColor Avatar

I use a peel-off base coat on my left (non-dominant) hand since I change my polish at least weekly. The UNT one is nice but my go-to is the Holo Taco peely base. My right hand usually gets Holo Taco’s smoothing base coat. If there’s nail art/stamping, I use the Maniology Smudge-free top coat first and then either Holo Taco Super Glossy Taco or the Seche Vite quick-dry top coat to finish.

Andrea Avatar

My favourite top coat is the Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Topcoat: it’s like an armoured coat for my nails, they’ll survive anything with this on! The only problem is it’s a bit difficult to remove but still worth it!
I like Risqué nail products in general – the ones made for the Brazilian market not for the European one (those are just average-ish at best). I still have a bunch of those when I lived there so I’m kind of going through those at the moment! The ones made for Brazil will survive a hurricane and general life without having to touch up. I remember the first time I visited (a lifetime ago!)… I brought dozens of them home! The girls at the store even looked at me funny! ahah!
However I have to be honest: I only put on a base coat when I’m going with dark or very bright nail polish to avoid stains, or if I’m doing my toes (always use a base coat regardless of the colour). If it’s light and neutral I typically won’t bother.

Sarah Avatar

I do my own gel nails at home (tips + color), so lately it’s been Makartt’s base and top coats. I like them, but I prefer Gelish.

So to answer the question: Gelish, haha!

Z Avatar

Haven’t found the right combo yet that keeps my nails from peeling/chipping the next day. So far those nail stickers are working out pretty well for me though…

Jessica Avatar

I’ve tried Sally Hansen and OPI, but my go to is Holo Taco. It just leaves the others in the dust. I recently got the Essie Gel Setter top coat because Holo Taco has been sold out for a while. I have to say while the Essie is better than OPI or Sally, it doesn’t beat the strength of the Holo Taco glossy Taco.

Delia Avatar

I clean the nail bed with soap or an antiseptic in order to remove any oil or dust from filing the nails. Then I apply the Orly Bonder as a base coat and Seche Vite dry fast toap coat. The Essie Gel Couture top coat is also a good one, but Seche Vite is the best because it leaves a glossy finish, dries the nail polish underneath faster and removes any air bubble that you may get after some nail polishes. But if you really enjoy Seche Vite you should get a bottle of its thinner solution, the Seche Restore because the Seche top coat tends to get thicker pretty quickly and you may be unable to use it when the bottle is just half empty. As I only use Seche Vite I bought a bottle of the thinner years ago and I am able to use any bottle till is almost empty.

Jill Avatar

Mine is Orly Bonder as the basecoat and then Seche Vite as the topcoat.

I buy both of them in refill sizes and then just top off the working bottles. For the SV I top it off every 2-3 manicures and it keeps the consistency nice and flowing, and then maybe once in a blue moon I put a drop or two of Seche Restore into the working bottle to help it even further.

I’ve been doing it this way since 2010 and it works like a charm. I can use pretty much any polish and get over a week of wear time, but I’m careful not to use my nails as tools and I wear gloves for gardening, house cleaning, and dishwashing.

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