Review: Sally Hansen Miracle Gel nail polish and top coat

Posted on October 30, 2014 under Reviews

I was on vacation in upstate New York this July when I stumbled upon the newly-launched Sally Hansen Miracle Gel nail polish. Being the type of person whose nail polish seems to chip within an hour of drying, I was intrigued. Could there actually be a DIY manicure that doesn’t involve any type of UV lamp that lasts two weeks?

That would be a hearty no.

In fact, the Miracle Gel nail polish is essentially the product of good marketing. You see, according to Sally Hansen, this is a two-step process. Step One is a base coat and nail polish in one. Step Two is the top coat, which is activated by natural light. Sally Hansen insists that these two steps must be used in conjunction with one another. So, essentially, Sally Hansen is able to guarantee an initial purchase of two products, totalling at about $20 CAD.

This sucks for the consumer not only because, well, you have to drop twenty bucks to use this product, but because if you want OMG miracle nails you only have 45 shades to choose from. I mean, that’s probably an average-sized nail polish range, but what if I told you that you could get OMG miracle nails in an unlimited colour palette?

Yes. That is a thing. Because while the Miracle Gel top coat definitely doesn’t last the advertised 14 days, it is a really good top coat. It makes my nails very shiny (as promised), and it certainly does make my nail polish last longer than it would on its own or with any other top coat I’ve tried. Yes, including Seche Vite (which I actually don’t like that much).

With this top coat, my nails go an easy 6-8 days without any chipping, and then another 3-4 with very minimal chipping. This is a long time for me, and it’s very convenient since I am lazy about my nail polish and tend not to take it off more than once a week, meaning I can continue to be lazy but not have nails that broadcast this fact to the world. Revolutionary! Thank you, Sally Hansen, for making me look like a competent and well-groomed adult!

So, what am I saying here?

The Sally Hansen Miracle Gel top coat is a product that, in my opinion, is worth the ten bucks it costs.

It is also a product that can be used over any nail polish (that I’ve tried, at least) with excellent results.

Therefore, you definitely do not need to buy both the top coat and the colour. You do not need to limit yourself to the colours in Sally Hansen’s Miracle Gel range, although there are some very nice colours so don’t feel like you shouldn’t buy them if you like them.

This product is a lot of marketing (read: hype) with a not insignificant dash of impressive performance. At this point, I would say the top coat is my HG. I do have to deduct points for the bullshit marketing, and will therefore conclude that the top coat is a holy grail surrounded by a layer of hype.


Day 6 of Sally Hansen Miracle Gel top coat over Sally Hansen Miracle Gel nail polish in Sugar Fix. (Ironically, I found the top coat performed the worst over the step one it was meant to be used with. It got quite dull after a few days, which I didn’t experience with other polishes.)


Day 6 of Sally Hansen Miracle Gel top coat over Barry M Gelly Hi-Shine Nail Paint in Kiwi. (This was the most chipping I experienced in all my trials!)


Day 7 of Sally Hansen Miracle Gel top coat over Wet N Wild Fastdry nail polish in Ebony Hates Chris.


Day 7 of Sally Hansen Miracle Gel top coat over Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear nail polish in White On.


Day 6 of Sally Hansen Miracle Gel top coat over Joe Fresh nail polish in Lavender.


Day 6 of Sally Hansen Miracle Gel top coat over Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear nail polish in Coin Flip.

… So, yeah, clearly the “miracle” thing isn’t an exaggeration.

Sally Hansen Miracle Gel top coat retails for $10.99 CAD for 0.5 fl oz, or $21.98 CAD per fl oz.

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