The key to prolong your nail polish and make your nails look smooth and shiny is to apply a top coat. It just helps to seal your nail polish and makes them look nice. I would use up all the base coat and top coat, so I don't mind spending more on them. I've tried Seche Vite, OPI top coat, Barielle, Poshe, Revlon. Out of the five products, I would only recommend OPI top coat or Revlon if you are on a budget. Seche Vite used to be my HG top coat but I found out they are not 3 free, so I threw them away. OPI has pretty good quality and you can usually find deals if you buy it with the base coat. Revlon is a good drug store brand and can't go wrong with it either. I would not recommend Poshe because it peels after 2 or 3 days and none of the other ones does that. Barielle takes forever to dry, so don't bother spending extra $ on this one either.
The latest ones I'm using are Nails Inc Kensington Topcoat Caviar, Butter London Hardwear P.D. Quick Top Coat, and Deborah Lippmann's Addicted to Speed Top Coat. Here is my comparison. Hope you'll find it helpful.
Nails Inc Kensington Topcoat Caviar (10ml)
- $10; Available at Sephora
- Dries extremely fast. Take less than a minute and I love how fast it dries.
- Easy to apply. Glides on nails smoothly. Very glossy. Has a hint of pink but does not show on nails.
- I will buy it again. Probably will wait when Sephora has F&F sale later this year. ;)
- $18; Available at Sephora, Ulta, Nordstrom or Butter London's website.
- High quality top coat. Does not peel. Dries rather fast but not as fast as Nails Inc. The polish is not thick and quite glossy; easy to apply.
- You can save some $ if you purchase it with the base coat for $25 instead of spending $18 for the top coat alone. Sometimes Ulta has deals for Butter London. This will be a repurchase item for me as well.
Deborah Lippmann Addicted to Speed (15ml)
- $20 for the full size bottle; Available at Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, HSN, Barney's, or other high end department stores.
- It's pretty expensive. I only purchased this from HSN because it came 1/2 size with 2 other nail polish. I can't remember exactly how much I paid; probably around $30 for the set.
- It has a very glossy finish but the consistency is thick!! It feels like the nail polish has dried up a bit. Not easy to apply. Drying time is quite fast for what it is. I'm afraid later on when the top coat is used halfway, I may get bubbles on my nails because the polish will get thicker and thicker. Probably will not repurchase it.