Thursday, February 28, 2013

Nail Product Reviews, Part 2

As promised, this week's post is about drying your nails in a hurry! I can't be the only one who saves doing my nails for the very last minute before a gig. After all, I don't want to risk chipping them while getting ready, but then they're still wet when I leave the house and I smudge them in the car! So let's look at one actual project marketed for drying nails and two tips from Pinterest. There's ice water, canola oil spray, and Drying Drops from Nicole by OPI. All were applied over Zuza nail polish by Zoya (one of my favorite brands!).
 First, I plunged two of my fingertips into a cup of icy water for two-ish minutes. This is supposed to make the nail polish dry hard and fast and also make it easy to remove the excess bits on the finger. Guess what it actually did? It HURT, that's what! Look at how red my poor finger is. And did it work? No. As you can see, my nail smudged badly while I was drying it off. And hours later, after showering, most of that excess polish is still there. If this was the MythBusters, this would get a big fat "BUSTED" stamp over it.
 Next I sprayed all the nails on one hand with canola oil. The instructions on Pinterest said to wait until they were dry and then wipe the excess off. How am I supposed to tell if my nail polish is dry if there's oil all over it? So I waited a few minutes while my other hand was in the ice water and dried them off at the same time. Look. It also smudged. And my fingers were oily. Also it seems to have given the polish a weird texture on a couple of nails. So no, this one doesn't work either.
Lastly, the product that was actually designed for this. The instructions said to apply the drops 60 seconds after the polish, then it should be dry to the touch after 1 minute and completely dry after 5. I used it on the first three nails of the icy hand. It was easy to apply and seems to have done the job. After one minute, they were dry. After about five minutes, I was able to scratch/dent the polish forcefully with another nail, but it didn't smudge from normal wear.

Over all, as a dancer I feel like if I'm in a hurry, it's probably going to be best to stick with a quick-dry polish or a quick buffing for my bare nails. However, if the color that you HAVE to have to match your costume isn't quick-dry, you should be safe with the drops. It seems like many of the nail polish brands on the market have their own version, so you may want to shop around and see which has the best value, but I imagine they probably all have the same active ingredient and work the same.

As for the polish? Definitely a fan. I tend to be drawn to the unusual colors that Zoya produces (I have a couple gorgeous muddy olive green hues from them), and this one doesn't disappoint. It's a nice teal green shimmer with a smooth finish. Would be great with a mermaid-themed costume!

By the way, if there's a makeup tip or product that you've seen floating around the internets and haven't felt like trying it yourself, let me know in the comments! I'll look into it for a future column... as long as it doesn't involve putting any part of my body in ice water! Brrr!


  1. AJ, for me, I polish my nails in the evening after I've finished everything I have to do for the day. I use a basecoat, two very thin coats of color and then a clear, chip resistant top coat. I let the second coat of color dry for about 10 minutes before I add the topcoat. The nails will dry like your sis, where you can press a nail in and mar the color, but they won't smudge with gentle use. In the morning they are perfectly dry (unless I sleep on my hand) and when I wash my hair it loosens any polish I've gotten on my cuticles so it is easy to remove in the shower.

    There is also a no chip basecoat on the market that is a MIRACLE. I think it is by Revlon. Creamy white in color, it feels a little tacky no matter how long you let it dry and it absolutely will not let go of your polish.

  2. Thank you for the tips, Karen! I'll look for that base coat for my next nail-centric review.

    I think you have the right idea on doing your nails. Late nights are generally bead-time for me, but I should set the beads down early and take the time to give myself a good manicure, with dry-time between coats and a base and top. I used to keep my nails painted all the time when I was a teen and I'm starting to miss that pop of color! It's been fun running around with this Zuza on my nails, I even got complimented on it while I was shopping today :)


Thank you for reading, please feel free to ask questions, post encouragement, make jokes, and otherwise be a part of my blog!