Top Ten: Nail Polishes

4 Aug

I must admit, this is a VERY difficult topic for me. (Though lipsticks would be even harder, which is why I’m waiting that one out!) I have close to 300 bottles of polish at this point – a very small number in comparison to Scrangie or All Lacquered Up! – which makes it frustrating to pick my favorites. But if you are a nail polish newcomer and are looking for a jump-off point, I HIGHLY suggest the following ten shades. They’re some of the best nail polishes out there, especially as they’re versatile (you can use them during any season)!

1. Essie Merino Cool and 2. Essie Sew Psyched

These are featured together because they’re from the same collection – which was a slam dunk, by the way! I think they’re a great twist on neutral. I like to wear them most in fall and in spring. Merino Cool in particular goes with everything, but these two shades look great with any outfit, from khakis and linen to tweed and classic black.

Essie Merino Cool and Sew Psyched

Essie Merino Cool (L) and Sew Psyched (R) Nail Polishes

3. OPI Ski Teal We Drop

Super creamy application and slightly unexpected on the nail, you’ll become as obsessed with this one as I am. A great fall to winter shade, but very fabulous in summer as well. And can we just talk about the brush? OPI’s nail brush makes for extreme ease of application – it hugs the nail, especially those on smaller hands – meaning you won’t need to keep applying polish to the same nail (this causes bubbles and slows down your dry time).

OPI Ski Teal We Drop Nail Polish

OPI Ski Teal We Drop Nail Polish

4. Orly Foils: Luxe, Shine, and Rage

I know I said only ten, but you can pick your favorite amongst the three. If you love gold, go with Luxe, if you’re a silver gal, go with Shine, but my favorite might be the rose gold, Rage. I consider them all to be one entity. AMAZING reflective finish, like wearing foil on your nails, and looks exceptional with a crackle polish or a glitter layered on top. You’ll wear them all year round (not just during the holiday season, which is when they’ll really shine), because they are too fabulous to not wear. They apply so smoothly, too! You can find them in Sally Beauty stores and Ulta, but also at some drugstores.

Orly Foil Nail Polish, Luxe, Shine and Rage

Orly Luxe (L) Shine (C) and Rage (R) Nail Polishes

Check it out – Orly Rage under OPI Black Shatter! How FIERCE is that?!?!

OPI Black Shatter over Orly Rage Nail Polish

OPI Black Shatter over Orly Rage Nail Polish

5. Essie Jelly Apple

I would be remiss if I didn’t include a jelly formula in this top ten. Très chic all year round, especially with a crisp white button-down (ugh, can you tell I’m missing cooler weather?), and applies smoothly and FAST. I like to do three coats, but if you prefer it sheerer, then go for two! (Due to how sunny it was when I took the picture, it showed up a little orange, but this is a true red shade. If you’re looking for a warmer red, try Essie‘s Clambake. Same finish, same ease in application, just more orange in hue.)

Essie Jelly Apple Nail Polish

Essie Jelly Apple Nail Polish

6. OPI Bubble Bath

Again, another Kardashian-suggested product, and for good reason. (I can’t WAIT for the Nicole for OPI Kardashian Kollection to come out!) If you’re looking for a French manicure-ish pink (though I strongly advise against getting French manicures or pedicures unless they’re super funky shades), this is it. Again, if you like sheer polishes, go for two coats of this and you will be head-over-heels.

OPI Bubble Bath Nail Polish

OPI Bubble Bath Nail Polish

7. Essie Lovey Dovey

This is a very Barbie-esque shade, so if you’re not into ultra-girly colors, skip this one. It’s a little too feminine for me to use in a manicure (anyone who knows me will say that’s ridiculous, but it’s true), and I think it toes the line between trashy and adorable – which is why I absolutely LOVE it on my toes! Great pedicure shade.

Essie Lovey Dovey Nail Polish

Essie Lovey Dovey Nail Polish

8. Deborah Lippmann Happy Birthday

You already know how much I like this shade. There’s someone in my family who likes to put glitter confetti in birthday cards – this reminds me of that, but way less messy. Super flashy! I recommend putting it over a foil, white, or black, but it’s up to you! I also advise at least two thick coats of Seche Vite on top so the nail surface feels smooth to the touch. I usually buy mine at Nordstrom, but you can get Deborah Lippmann polishes on her website, at Neiman Marcus, Lord and Taylor, and bluemercury.

Deborah Lippmann Happy Birthday Nail Polish

Deborah Lippmann Happy Birthday Nail Polish

9. OPI Siberian Nights

Another über-chic shade, Siberian Nights is stunning against skin of all shades. While black will always be the new black, this super-dark purple is a way more fabulous polish option. While I am pretty rigid with my pedicures (almost only red and pink), this is a wonderful and unexpected choice for toes.

OPI Siberian Nights Nail Polish

OPI Siberian Nights Nail Polish

10. China Glaze For Audrey

China Glaze is amazing across the board, so I was torn picking a color. I don’t think China Glaze gets enough credit – they have awesome seasonal shades and a terrific permanent collection. My only complaint is that they’re harder for me to find. I get mine at Sally Beauty (luckily I have a new one of those stores!) and Ulta. Their distribution should be as widespread as Essie and OPI! Anyway, For Audrey is a great spring and summer shade, considering how turquoise seems to be trendy every year. Smooth application, though the brush is a little floppy for my taste. Looks great with white or silver anything layered on top, if that’s how you roll (Tiffany’s certainly knew what they were doing when they paired turquoise and white)! This is very close in color to a Tiffany & Co. box, but not an exact match as that color is trademarked by the jewelery company.

China Glaze For Audrey Nail Polish

China Glaze For Audrey Nail Polish

There you have it, everyone – my top ten nail polishes! Do you think that they’re worthy, or did I miss an opportunity to share an awesome polish on this list?


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