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Price Tag Cage Match Lite: Nail Polish

By Amalah

I have showered and brushed my teeth this morning. I am wearing hot jeans and an old white button-down shirt of Jason’s. The sun is shining and I’m meeting my best girlfriend for lunch with our boys, and in short, everything is returning to awesome.
And I bet all your comments from Wednesday’s column had something to do with it. 93! Wait, no. 94! That’s an all-time record for around here, I think. (As an aside, I’m sorry that y’all have to register with TypeKey to comment, but for some reason the Advice Smackdown always brought out the trolls back in the days when I wrote it for, and I always got comments like OMG U ARE SO SHALLOW and SPOILED WHO CARES ABOUT LIP GLOSS?)
(Obviously, the answer to that question is EVERYBODY. THAT’S WHO.)
But it DOES make me happy to see that I’m not the only one who 1) has a crazy-rogue hair problem, and 2) really, really enjoys discussing what works and what doesn’t in the world of beauty products. I mean, I know there are very big problems in the world that we should spend some time discussing and working towards a solution, but some days my cracking cuticles are about the biggest problem I can deal with. (And we all know Alice is the smart one around here anyway.)
So. Y’all gave me some really great ideas for future posts and some help with selecting Questions For The Whole Class. Plus, a reminder of something I wanted to clear up.
Whenever someone comments with their own advice, they tend to apologize, like they’re stepping on my toes or something. Please! My pedicure can take it. The comments are an extension of the Smackdown, so please don’t ever hesitate to pitch in your own two cents, even if it contradicts the wooden nickels I contributed.
A lot of your questions are going to take some research on my part — some products to try, friends to poll, etc. — but there was one I can answer RIGHT NOW. The Price Tag Catch Match for nail polish.
In my personal experience: Yes, OPI really stands head and shoulders over the drugstore brands. I mean, there’s a reason it’s the standard nail salon option.
opi.jpgI’ve tried tons of polish brands — everything from Sephora’s own little bottles to Wet n’ Wild. And OPI definitely goes on the easiest and lasts the longest. Plus I just love their colors.
Commenter AJMICK had a good point though, which is that using OPI’s clear topcoat over cheaper polishes also helps. So if you’re like me and have a drawer full of cheap-o polishes (that are, interestingly enough, about 400 variations on the same damn shade of burgundy), just get some OPI clear to brush on top of them. It will definitely extend the life of your polish. I’ve actually found that Wet n’ Wild polish + OPI clear = perfect.
I’m pretty hard on my nails, so I generally just use OPI’s clear polish on them anyway. (I’ve also been getting manicures fairly regularly lately, for the first time in my life, due to a crazy outbreak of dyshidrotic eczema on my fingers. Seriously, SUCH a nice treat, and my nails are stronger and longer than ever. Keeping them filed and pretty stops me from picking at my hands and biting my nails. Sort of. Most of the time. Heh.) I also use Sally Hansen’s Miracle Cure for Severe Problem Nails as the basecoat, and it works….pretty well. I guess. I’m bad about remembering to use it as often as I probably should.
So my toes have always been the better yardstick for measuring a polish’s longlastinocity (hey, if the cosmetic industry can make up words, so can I). A pedi done with OPI looks damn good for weeks and is easily brightened up with an at-home coat of clear. Anything else just doesn’t hold up as well. (Including other expensive brands — I had a ridiculously overpriced pedi done at Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spa a few months ago and that polish lasted less than a damn week.)
Obviously, we’ll be revisiting the whole salon-pedicure vs. home-pedicure topic in a future column, since I’d say it was the most-requested from Wednesday. Possibly only second to BIKINI WAXES, which: dudes. The things I do for you. God.

Published April 20, 2007. Last updated April 20, 2007.
About the Author

Amy Corbett Storch


Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Ama...

Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Amalah. Also, it’s pronounced AIM-ah-lah.

If there is a question you would like answered on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to [email protected].

Amy also documented her second pregnancy (with Ezra) in our wildly popular Weekly Pregnancy Calendar, Zero to Forty.

Amy is mother to rising first-grader Noah, preschooler Ezra, and toddler Ike.

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