Though I have no particular interest in using essence’s better than gel nails system as it’s intended to be used, I was just intrigued enough to give the base sealer and top sealer a try.
If you’re not familiar with this system, it’s basically glue-on tips that are supposed to mimic gels and consists of a file for preparing the nail, tips, glue, base sealer and top sealer (both of which are applied after attaching the tip), and a remover.
Since my nails aren’t that short the tips are not really something I’d use, but I guess if I had major breakage before a fancy event I might give them a try. Either way, review:
Obviously I don’t use the base and top sealer as they’re intended. I’ve tried using them instead of my usual base and top coats, but found that they’re not suitable to use with several coats of polish between them (hello, sticky, wrinkly, non-drying mess).
In some way they remind me of Sally Hansen’s treatments, but I can’t quite put my finger on why I make that connection. The base sealer is just a bit thicker than the top sealer, which runs freely off the brush when pulled out of the bottle without wiping it off. Both are completely clear and thankfully haven’t thickened so far (which I had half expected due to the SH resemblance).
I’ve recently incorporated these two products into my multi-layered polishing system as follows: Nail Envy - base sealer - base colour (2-4 coats) - Seche Vite - nail art - top sealer - Seche Vite
Some of you might think I’m not quite sane when looking at that list, but that’s what works for me and it helps to protect my nails. What I’ve found since adding base sealer and top sealer instead of random base and top coats is that instead of lasting two to three days my mani is free of chips and tipwear until the fourth day at least and generally only has very minor damage on the fifth day. It might even last longer, but I kind of got bored.
Even when I’m in a polish-picking mood and completely remove all the wrapped edges, which usually means chipping within hours: Nothing. All good.
Minor negative point: when sealing nail art top sealer smudged some polishes even after I let them dry. I’ll have to experiment to see which ones react less than decently.
In conclusion: I can’t tell you how essence’s base sealer and top sealer perform as intended, but for me incorporating them into my routine has worked brilliantly and I intend to keep using them for the time being.