The news of the arrival of the royal baby boy has left me craving for some royal treatment of my own. And for a “commoner” like me, that’s usually a trip to the nearest salon for a mani/pedi fix. When I don’t have the time or energy to make the trip, I opt for at-home self-service. Still a small luxury in my mind. Problem is, I have yet to perfect a polish technique when using my non-dominant hand. You can envision it. My left hand is always flawless. My right hand looks like I lost a fight to a pot of finger paint.
That’s where the ever-efficient nail polish strips come in.
Brands ranging from Essie, L’Oreal, Maybelline, Incoco and Sally Hansen have collections of nail polish strips in a wide variety of colors and patterns: from the monochromatic for a classic polished look to the artsy to satisfy the inner wild child in all of us.
I recently had the chance to test out Incoco Nail Appliqués in “It’s a secret,” and Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips in “Animal Instinct.”
You know, as part of my royal treatment…
“It’s a secret” is a lovely silver, chevron pattern that was a perfect fit for my classic style.
“Animal Instinct” is a fuchsia zebra print that provided a crazy accent nail to an otherwise dark gray manicure.
Beyond looks, here’s how they stack up.
AT FIRST GLANCE
Both are 100% nail polish strips (unlike press-ons or stickers) that boast a wear-time of up to 10-14 days. They each come with 16 double-ended strips that can be used for both a traditional manicure and a French nail look. And their price ranges are also more comforting than those of a big-city salon, ranging from $7 to $10 per pack.
Both strips are extremely easy to apply, just as claimed.The Incoco Nail Appliqués are slightly thinner, so they require more delicate handling than the Sally Hansen Salon Effects. Having said that, they look more like real nail polish on the nail once applied.
The application process is no-nonsense for both; no buffing, base-coat/top-coat or dry time necessary.
I found that the Incoco Nail Appliqués last longer, having a realistic wear-time of 5-6 days. The Sally Hansen Salon Effects start chipping on the first day, and last 3-4 days. Like real nail polish, you have to be careful with them.
The Sally Hansen Salon Effects come with a small set of cute tools, a huge bonus for those who are on-the-go without a buffer/file or cuticle stick and in need of a quick mani.
Each brand has its pros and cons, and they net out pretty evenly. So in the end, it goes back to looks after all. The most important thing is choosing the perfect pattern — to complement your style, your outfit or even your mood.
Not sure if you’re a #classicchevron or a #pinkwildchild? For their price and ease, afford yourself the luxury to try both and see.
Note: This post is not sponsored. Samples were provided for review.