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Nail polish essentials kit

Hey everyone! Some of you may be shocked to know I only have 3 nail polishes... yikes! I work at a hospital and it's kind of frown upon so I generally steer clear but I just want a few key ones for when the moment strikes. I currently only own OPI miani beet (dark berry color - wore for my wedding), an Essie red color from a mini xmas collection, and just recently bought that neon coral China Glaze Flip Flop Fantasy (sooo pretty... NOT my favorite formula). So, in order to build my kit (without the obsession going out of control like the one I have with make-up!)... can you all answer these questions for me? 1. Best neutral/lilght pink (opaque w/ 2 coats preferable) 2. Best toe nail polish color 3. Favorite bright color 4. Favorite brand/formula 5. Favorite top coat/bottom coat Also random but I love black nail polish... so if you have a good suggestion for that, let me know!

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

Let me start off by saying I used to be way less into nail polish but since I started visiting BT I am all about a cute mani/pedi Smiley Happy 

1. OPI Privacy Please, a very pale pink, very "natural but more" color

2. I usually match my finger and toe nails

3. Sephora by OPI What Aura Gonna Wear? A super bright pink

4. OPI. But I am trying out Sephora X and so far so good

5. Sephora X base coat and the separate Sephora X top coat. 

OPI makes a great black onyx polish!

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

I really want to paint my nails light pink soon so I'll go swatch that at Ulta tomorrow!! Thank you!

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

OMG - I don't know what happened over the course of a year, but my collection just EXPLODED.


Neutral/light pink

 - Something Sweet by China Glaze

 - It's not opaque but a real pretty sheer peachy pink - Frisson by Chanel

 - For a nude/neutral Topless & Barefoot by Essie and 


Toes - I usually try to match or do a shade or more darker


Bright color - I can only wear bright colors on the weekends/vacation but my favorites are Butler Please by Essie and Lilis by Chanel (though I could probably pull this off at work).


Brand/formula - Unfortunately for my wallet, once I started using

Chanel nail polishes, I never went back to OPI, Zoya, or Essie. That being said, Essie would be second.  temptalia's site can be used to find dupes.


Top/bottom coat - Seche Vite for top coat; I'm not as picky on bottom coat (if you prep your nails, most any will do), but if I've been bad Essie's Ridge Filler is nice


Black - Chanel's Black Satin: Really only need one coat (other brands, at least, need two b/c of streaking; a true black;so sleek and a nice satin finish (not overly shiny)


You might want to consider subscribing to the Julep box (there are a number of mentions of this in this forum).  I haven't..yet..

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

1&2- I don't really wear light polishes, nor do I wear polish on my toes; the few times I coat my toes, it matches my nails.  My favorite bright color is any emerald green, though the nerd in me is leaning towards OPI's Here Today, Aragon Tomorrow.  OPI is my preferred brand, though I just got a Julep Maven membership, so we'll see how that goes  And I'm terrible when it comes to coats, 95% of the time it's just color on my nails, with touch-ups whenever I chip.


There's a code out there to get your first box free, if you decide to join up with Julep.  Smiley Happy

Re: Nail polish essentials kit shouldn't have mentioned that code.  I already subscribe to Birchbox and Glossybox. 

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

1) Sephora by OPI Dear Diary... not sold anymore but can be found on amazon. The opacity isn't that great, but if you use a lot than you can get great color payoff.


2) I usually just match my toes to my fingers...


3) Essie Peach Daiquiri - GORGEOUS bright coral color


4) Sally Hansen Hard as Nails


5) I always have just used the Sephora by OPI top and bottom coats


For black nail polish, I absolutely love Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Black Out. It's so opaque and the formula is amazing! Plus it lasts forever!

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

1. Best neutral/lilght pink (opaque w/ 2 coats preferable) Essie Ballet Slippers (sheer pink -sometimes needs 3 coats for opaque tho), Allure (nude), or Sugar Daddy (light essie Ballet Slippers 1.JPGpink)

2. Best toe nail polish color: (I've been doing pinks lately) Essie Fiji (light pink) or French Affair (pink with lavender tint)

3. Favorite bright color: OPI Pink Flamingo

4. Favorite brand/formula:  OPI (but my favorite all-time polish color is Essie's Really Red..)

5. Favorite top coat/bottom coat: Nails Inc., Kensington Cavier Quick dry Top coat! Orly Base coat

Also random but I love black nail polish... so if you have a good suggestion for that, let me know!  Sorry, but I NEVER DO BLACK OR GREY NAILS! (reminds me of a corpse, lol)

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

Haha, I think black looks so edgy on short nails! We'll agree to disagree Smiley Wink

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

Agreed! My personal preferences aside, if you want to check into Blacks, I do know that Essie's Wicked is very popular --- it's a black with a deep red hue, OPI's Black Onyx and China Glaze Black Diamond

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

Ouuu wicked sounds really cool, thanks for the tip!


NOTHING is worse than chipped black polish though!

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

I do love Wicked - it's one of the few empties I've had for nail polish.

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

1. Best neutral/lilght pink (opaque w/ 2 coats preferable) - I usually go for browns, so Essie Don't Sweater It or OPI You Don't Know Jacques

2. Best toe nail polish color - I prefer bright colors for my toes, so this summer I've been using a lot of Essie's Pretty Edgy (jad green) and Fifth Avenue (orange-y red)

3. Favorite bright color - see above

4. Favorite brand/formula - clearly, I'm an Essie fan (I prefer creme polishes, and that is a finish that they do very well)

5. Favorite top coat/bottom coat - I use Orly Satin Bond for a base coat and Seche Vite for my top coat -- best combo I've found yet to keep my polish from chipping.

Also random but I love black nail polish... so if you have a good suggestion for that, let me know! - Hm, I don't use black nail polish, but I do hear nice things about Wicked. 

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

My favorite top coat is Barielle Ultra Speed Dry Manicure Extender.  I don't necessarily feel like it speeds anything up, but it has a beautiful glossy finish, and it really does help my polish look better, longer.  I usually order several off of Amazon at the same time, and share with a few good friends (can't find it locally).  They started carrying some Barielle products at Sally's Beauty Supply, and the top coat there is NOT the same (I tried).  If I need my polish to dry FAST, I use Seche Vite.  It really does dry very quickly, but it isn't as glossy or durable. 


Have fun with nail polish -- it's an obsession of mine!! 

Re: Nail polish essentials kit


1. OPI My Very First Knockwurst - love this color so much. It's my go to "professional" color.

 2. Essie Tart Deco or Deborah Lippmann Daytripper -Apparently I'm in the minority with the bright, unmatched toes (high five LindaDD!)

3. Lippmann Daytripper - Admittedly, I'm pretty enamored with this cause it's new and shiny. But it is stunning.

4. OPI is probably my favorite brand, mostly because of their names. I think they're hilarious. Lippmann's polishes do tend to stay cleaner when I'm applying them. I keep them on the nail and off of the cuticle much more easily.

5. Top coat - Seche Vite (remember to wrap tips!) It just dries so. Dang. Fast.
Base coat - Nail Tek II - I change my polish A LOT and this helps me feel better about that.

I've been on the hunt for a good black polish, so I'll be stalking this board, too Smiley Wink

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

I loooove bright unmatched toes!

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

I don't do pinks or brights, ever, period. But black I do know something about. Smiley Wink

The best blacks I have right now are OPI black onyx and Sephora by OPI what's a tire jack? Good quality.

Sally Hansen Hard As Nails in black heart is a runner up.

Brands to avoid entirely: Revlon and Wet n Wild.


My favorite top coat ever is Sally Hansen Hard As Nails. Pretty much any clear nail polish works as a base coat.

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

First, I would comment that "Flip Flop Fantasy" is known to be difficult to work with ~ China Glaze usually has better formulas, but their neons have been tricky.  I'd switch to Finger Paints or OPI if you want nails that glow.


1. Best neutral/light pink (opaque w/ 2 coats preferable) ~ Neutral - Finger Paints has a limited edition out right now called "Whatta Dish" that's a nice beige with just a hint of shimmer; China Glaze has a permanent collection chocolate shimmer called "Unplugged".  Pink ~ OPI has a light pink cream called "Mod About You" that is just about the perfect color, although it is a bit streaky on the first coat. 

2. Best toe nail polish color ~ I actually spent about 7 years working in research labs myself where nail polish was not exactly welcome, so I just put all of my nail polishes on my toes.  Now, I tend to put on pearly sheers during sandal season (Sally Hansen's "Platinum" right now) and deep reds the rest of the time (OPI's "I'm not really a Waitress" or China Glaze's "Ruby Pumps are my faves).

3. Favorite bright color - Zoya has a textured polish right now call "Destiny" that's a pretty coral; if you don't like the textured look, they have one called "Amy" that's supposed to be pretty similar.  I also like China Glaze's "Lighthouse". It's a bright yellow with a subdued (glassflecked) glitter.

4. Favorite brand/formula - I just discovered Zoya a few months ago, and love that they don't discontinue their color collections, so I don't freak out when I find something I like and buy backup bottles.  They've got a great range of colors, and have killer discounts every few months.  OPI and China Glaze put out some amazing limited edition colors, and are available everywhere.  If you're on a budget/won't use up the bottles, Sally Hansen and Finger Paints (sold by Sally Beauty Supply) are solid brands with a decent color range.  Splurge nail polishes for me are definitely Deborah Lippmann, Butter London, and Illamasqua.

5. Favorite top coat/bottom coat - I've been liking Nailtek for the bottom coat and ACI's Gelous on the top.  Seche Vite is a good topcoat too.  I've been putting a layer of Gelous on and then a layer of Seche Vite lately.  It makes it very smooth and seems to last longer on me (five to eight days).

6. I love black nail polish... so if you have a good suggestion for that, let me know! - Honestly, when I go with a straight midnight black, I just use Sinful Colors' "Black on Black"; at $2 a bottle I haven't found anything to knock my socks off more.  If you're looking for black with a bit of personality, I'd look at Butter London's "Black Knight", which is a black with multicolored glitter, or Sephora by OPI's "I'm with Brad", which is a black with a red shimmer in it (but hurry on that one, they're discontinuing it)."


Bonus color ~ I *love* metallic foils right now.  Sephora by OPI has "Chestnuts about You" a rose gold foil (and does anyone reading this know of a good dupe?  This is discontinued soon too).  OPI has two great foils; one is a gold foil called "Glitzerland" and the other is a silver called "I haven't the Foggiest".  Urban Decay has a green/gold right now called "Addiction". All are really great for special events.

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

Wow thanks for the in depth review! Also those foils (rose gold?!) sound amazing!!

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

I am a nail polish addict. Every time OPI comes out with a new line, I seem to have to pick up one or two new colors. i love black on shorter nails, especially with a glittery or shimmery accent. however my all time favorite color is China Glaze Ruby Slippers. It is such a beautiful red glitter that has amazing coverage.  OPI's I'm not Really a Waitress is an amazing red, Russian Navy is a beautiful deep blue (this was the first dark color I ever wore, then there was no looking back) and the new grey/silver from the San Francisco collection Haven't the Foggiest is a great full coverage silver.  I think I have as many bottles of nail polish as my manicurist.  My current manicure is attached.  image.jpg

Re: Nail polish essentials kit

Good point on trying a dark navy (or purple even) over black! Will check that out!

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