As a base coat, I used my beloved Sally Hansen Miracle Cure ($8). I love this stuff; I've been using it for years. Whenever my nails are feeling weak, I'll just swipe a coat of this on, since it contains minerals, antioxidants, and other healthy goodies for your nails. I've found that it works just as well under nail polish, and I think it just does as good of a job as other base coats--this just has added benefits!
After that dried, I painted my nails with one coat of my Nailtini Straight Up Color Nail Lacquer in Frappe ($13). I like this brand because they are "3-Free," so their polishes do not contain dibutyl phthalate, toluene, or formaldehyde. Unlike Zoya, they are not "Big-5 Free" and still contain Formaldehyde Resin and Caphor. I'll be doing a post in the future about all of these ingredients, but for now, just know that the beauty community is kind of wary of them.
As far as the formulation goes, I love it. I also really like the brush--the width and length just worked really well for my nails, which made for quicker and easier cleanup around the cuticles. I would definitely purchase polishes from Nailtini in the future.
However, as you can see from the pictures above, the color is really sheer. One coat hardly provided any color. The one coat I applied of this just added a nice milky pink tint to my nails, but if you're looking for an opaque pale pink, stop here. For this particular manicure, I liked the "natural, but polished" look, but it takes about 3-4 coats for full opacity. I'm pretty impatient, so if I really wanted to paint my nails an opaque pale pink, I would probably go with another pale pink polish. It's one of the most popular nail polish colors, so I'm sure you won't have much trouble. Still, if you're looking for a recommendation, you can try Revlon Pale Cashmere or Essie Ballet Slippers, which are opaque in less coats.
One thing I do like about painting my nails really sheer like this is that no one can really tell when your polishes chips, which lengthens the life of your manicure. But, if you're looking for an opaque pale pink that doesn't take as many coats, I would definitely look elsewhere.
For a top coat, I used Duri Rejuvacote ($8), which I purchased at a salon awhile ago. I have no strong feelings about it--it does its job as a top coat and I like it. I'm not attached to it, but it works well as a top coat and prevents chips.
What's on your nails right now?
Disclaimer: I am not sponsored by, nor affiliated with, Nailtini. I purchased this with my own money. All opinions expressed are 100% my own.