I Tried the New Essie Gel Polish and it Sucked

So yeah, I guess I could just leave this blog post blank and let the title do the talking for me… but if you know me at all, I need to tell you more about the total suck-age that I experienced.

I read a blogger’s review of the new Essie Gel Couture nail polish a couple months ago and it was SO overwhelmingly positive that I immediately added “BUY ESSIE GEL POLISH” to my ongoing Target list.

I love the look of pretty painted nails (especially dark colors, because apparently I’m secretly a goth), but it drives me crazy when they chip. I have no tolerance for chipping and typically go through the whole polish removal process as soon as I can. Which really makes me mad when I just did the whole polish applying process the day before. I’ve had a professional gel manicure a couple times for fancy events and LOVED how my nails looked pretty for almost two weeks.

So anyways, I figured that since the blogger loved the new polish I’d give it a try. On my next trip to Target I picked up the Essie Gel Couture in the color “Spiked with Style” for $11.49 and the Essie Gel Setter Top Coat for $9.99. The $22 commitment was a little steep, but I figured that if it took the place of a professional manicure and lasted the claimed 14 days it was worth it.

Spoiler alert: it was NOT worth it.

I did everything right: I used a base coat, applied two coats of color and then topped it all with the special top coat. My nails looked great and so shiny! It was early evening, so I lived life like normal and went to bed. The next morning, I got ready for work, drove there and worked a full day doing normal marketing-type stuff. No random rock climbing or ninja fighting at all.

Within 24 hours I had chipped 7 out of 10 nails:


SEVEN out of TEN nails within a day?! Where were these claims that it would last two weeks with no chips? The worst part is that I lost the receipt, so I can’t return this $22 worth of trash. I figure that the best I could do is to save you guys from wasting your money on it!

So I’m a little bitter. And I came up with a list of other stuff I could have spent that $22 on instead of this crappy nail polish:

  • 4 Grande Caramel Macchiato’s from Starbucks
  • 7 bags of candy corn
  • 2 matinee tickets to a movie theater and a soda
  • This mug
  • 10 ½ gallons of gas
  • An actual manicure that doesn’t suck

Lesson learned.

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4 thoughts on “I Tried the New Essie Gel Polish and it Sucked”

  1. That’s too bad! Have you tried the Sally Hansen gel polishes? I have a few of those and they are pretty good. Not great, but I can probably get almost a week before it chips and I have to remove it.

  2. Target is typically awesome with returns, I bet they can look it up by your credit card. Try it, it’s worth the $22! 🙁

  3. Bummer, Joules! Did the same thing after reading another bloggers “Must Use” for the winter months, and mine were completely peeled off within 4 days. I even used an essie base coat, so no excuses! I had better results when I used Essie all in one base/top coat with a basic essie color. That one lasted a week.

  4. Good to know! I just saw another vlogger mention this yesterday so I was going to maybe give them a try. I have the Sally Hansen gel system and it’s ok, but also not super great either. I rarely paint my fingernails for the reasons you listed, I hate when it chips and I have to take it off the next day. I’ll cross it off my list now – thank you!

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