Lumos High Speed Top Coat? Better than Seche Vite…

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 1 - 2011

…that got your attention didn’t it?

I’ve been using the Lumos High Speed Top Coat (and base coat) for a few months now, it’s a product that I hadn’t heard much about before.  It’s not cheap but I’m confident that you’re going to need it.

To be honest with you, it’s been *killing* me that I haven’t been able to blog about this sooner but I wanted to make absolutely sure that I didn’t go ahead and rave about this top coat only to watch it go the same way as my numerous bottles of Seche Vite a few months down the line – i.e. gloopy and unusable.

The Lumos High Speed Top Coat hails from a company called Famous Names LLC and a little bit of digging reveals that this company is owned by none other than Jim and Linda Nordstrom of Creative Nail Design fame.  These are people who quite frankly, know what they’re doing when it comes to nails.

So… why do you need it?

Because it appears to be the top coat we’ve all been waiting for.

~ It dries solidly in a couple of minutes… touchproof, smudgeproof.  It’s equally as good as Seche Vite in providing a quick-dry finish.

~ It applies effortlessly, floating over the nail bed without pooling and it doesn’t complain and drag if you need to ‘go over’ it to spread it a little thinner.

~ I haven’t noticed any shrinkage or colour change to my polish after application.

~ It doesn’t go gloopy after a couple of months (3 months of frequent use, still perfect).

~ It seems to last and last and last!

How about some cons to even things up a bit?

Well.. it’s a bit expensive at around £10/£11 a bottle… but considering the image above shows 3 months usage (yes, really – there’s barely a dent in it!), I think it still represents great value for money.

I’ve also been using the Lumos Instant Impact Bottom Coat which promises to increase polish longevity but in all honesty, I’m just not the best placed to comment on its effectiveness simply because I don’t suffer from chips and I rarely want to wear my polishes for longer than 4/5 days at most anyway.  I can say that I haven’t experienced nail staining from my blue polishes (a.k.a smurf nails) since using this, so on that score – it’s a good base coat.

The UK distributor for LUMOS are Sweet Squared, a professional-only distributor.  I bought my duo set from eBay in January (£19.50 for both) but a quick google search also reveals a few other stockists that will sell directly to consumers.


Models Own goes Crackle Crazy with Smash-Up!

Posted by Lipglossiping On March - 11 - 2011

The crackle craze started in the UK last Autumn with a certain black top coat from BarryM that cracked and shattered to create interesting effects and nail art for the unartistic.

Then the BIG guns got involved with OPI and even Dior getting in on the act!

Now Models Own have jumped squarely on the crackle bandwagon and are doing it in style with their new collection SMASH-UP

Available from April, Models Own will be introducing an entire rainbow of crackle shades to glam up your nails for the Summer!

Priced at £6.00 each, you’ll be able to get your hands on them in Boots and online at www.modelsownit.com

Boots 17 Cosmetics Matte Top Coat Nail Polish

Posted by Lipglossiping On July - 10 - 2010

Last year, they were everywhere and they divided opinion.  Some loved ’em, some hated ’em.

What am I talking about?  Matte Nails of course!

17 Nails Xtras Matte Top Coat Polish 8ml (£3.99) from Boots is due to be released in September and I’ve got a sneaky peek for you!

Well… finally!  A really, thoroughly decent matte top coat with great availability and a price tag to match!

It may a little late to the mass market to be considered the height of fashion, but this budget matte top coat from 17 Cosmetics is gonna be a hugely popular seller in my humble opinion.

It applies a true matte finish, none of this satin semi-matte nonsense.  So far, I haven’t noticed it accentuating any ridges or imperfections in the polish application underneath and it dries fully in minutes.  Actually, that’s my one caveat… you need to apply the top coat quickly as it will dry rapidly.  Once you realise this, it’s not a problem as the polish glides on smoothly anyway.

After wearing for a couple of days, the matte finish does get slightly shinier… more satiny.  But I haven’t noticed an increase in chipping or tip wear as a result of topping up my standard manicure with this little gem.

£3.99?  You’ll want to get this!  Hurry up September!

Move over Seche, there’s a new kid in town…

Posted by Lipglossiping On May - 4 - 2010

…introducing INM’s Out The Door quick-dry top coat.

Recommended to me by the lovely Jamilla from Makeup for Professional Asian Women which, btw is a must-read for her inspiring and regularly updated posts.

INM’s Out The Door is a serious contender to the Seche Vite crown… firstly, I’m gonna come right out and say that this stuff doesn’t dry my nails as fast as Seche Vite.  I’ll be surprised if anything does.  But, it does dry them respectably quickly.  I also find the texture of the product makes it far easier to apply.

I know that Seche Vite suffers from thickening, but even comparing this to a new bottle of the Seche, INM’s Out The Door applies beautifully smoothly… it’s as if I’m coating my manicure with water rather than polish.

In the time it takes me to ‘top coat’ all my nails, the first will be touch dry by the time I’m finished.  Not dent-dry however…  this takes about another 10-15 minutes to fully harden.  Which is fine for me, I just take a little more care and haven’t had any problems yet.

Where the INM Out The Door blows Seche outta the water is with shrinkage.  I haven’t experienced even a millimetre of unnecessary tip wear with this top coat.

Less pungent smelling and easier to apply makes for a happy Lipglossiping.  I often decide to paint my nails about half an hour before bed, and I haven’t had any problems with duvet imprints!

Availability and price is also an issue as this seems to be a little easier to get hold of in the UK than Seche Vite.  Price varies but I’ve found it here for a bargain price of £3.95.

Have you tried it?

The trouble with Seche…

Posted by Lipglossiping On April - 8 - 2010

…gloop, gloop, gloop.

After a while (not even that long in all honesty), the quick-drying saviour that is Seche Vite starts to lose it’s magic.  The formula thickens, goes stringy, straggly and gloopy.  Quite literally, it becomes unusable and you end up turning the air blue after it ruins the manicure you’ve just spent the last 40 minutes applying.

There is a solution, although it comes at the cost of having to buy another product.

Enter Seche Restore

Seche Restore is a thinner designed to breathe life back into not only your bottle of Seche Vite, but other polishes that thicken over time.

Taking the dropper, pull some of the thinner into the chamber and simply drip about 6 drops into your bottle of Seche Vite.  How many drops of thinner you need to add will depend entirely on how gloopy your Seche Vite has gotten.  I needed to add quite a few… (more like 14/15 overall).

The thinner liquid will kinda sit on top of the Seche Vite, so you need to take the bottle and gently roll it between your fingers, encouraging the thinner to mix with evenly through the top coat.

And you’re done!  Check consistency until it’s as you remembered it.  If it still seems gloopy… add a bit more!

Now… the *other* trouble with Seche Vite…

Why is the brush so darn stumpy and what am I supposed to do when the level goes below it huh? huh?

I bought my bottle of Seche Restore on eBay and paid around £8 for it inc. postage.  I’d rather not have to… but the bottle will last me a hell of a long time and I’m sure I’ll put it to other good polish-restoring uses aswell… now where did I put those gloopy Ciates?

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