These words correctly describe my relationship with quick drying top coats. For many, fast dry topcoats are a game/life changer. However, for me, the constant battle with their faults has soured my love for them; hence my love for them is
1. One word: Fast. Who could not love a mani that dries to the touch in 2-5 minutes and then fully in 20-40 min. Taking into consideration that a regular mani takes ~3 hours to dry fully after the last coat of topcoat, which does not even include well dried coats of base and color in between, this is tremendous.
2. The shininess that one can achieve is just plain silly. Simply gorgeous.
This is Essie - Masquerade Ball with Seche Vite.
That pic on the bottom right gives me convulsions.
3. Due to it's thick formulation it provides a nice layer of protection.
Here is a before and after picture using Seche Vite.
Before on the left.
After on the right.
Clearly the one on the right is much thicker.
4. The formula of quick dry top coats sets to a much harder finish. This is a pro from a strength aspect, but also a con because at some point too hard = brittle and chipping can become a problem. I'm not saying Seche Vite alone causes chipping or that it can't be prevented.
Hate and Frustration
The many complaints of fast dry topcoats include:
1. Shrinkage at the tip - Granted this problem can be prevented, here is an example:
MUA nail boards is using a traditional top coat underneath the quick dry one. I can't attest to this, but it sounds reasonable.
Anyone have a personal experience with using this technique?
2. Shrinkage at the cuticle - this is one of my biggest pet peeves.
Here is a picture of the franken I showed in an earlier post right after I put on Seche Vite (SV). HELLO Gorgeous!
So of course you're probably saying to yourself "hey dummy, leave a larger gap." To be even more difficult ... another pet peeve of mine is a large (and growing) gap between the cuticle and color. Sometimes performance tests will be ended short due to this annoying gap from regrowth. So, what I am saying is I struggle with this problem.
Perhaps a regular top coat under Seche Vite would help solve this. Any advice from others?
3. Dulling after a day or two. Sometimes this dulling is only visible with camera flash, but otherwise since I apply a coat of clear every two days or so to make mani's last longer this is not such a big deal.
4. More chipping than a regular top coat.
a.) be incompatible with certain polishes (or with your own nail chemistry) OR
b.) dry to a much harder finish in comparison to the flexibility of the nail or polish underneath.
Thus in both cases the polish is much more likely to chip because there is not as much "give" as in the natural nail.
The top coat I have pictured is Seche Vite Ultra-V. It's suppose to be Seche's version of a UV curable top coat. It is absolute crap. Not only does it chip like crazy, but it's a fake UV activated top coat. None of the ingredients listed require UV to cure, so what up wit dat?
5. Thickening of the formula.
About half way down Seche Vite can get a little thick, but that's not something a little nail thinner can't cure.
6. Incompatibility with some base coats/colors.
Some people report Seche Vite (and only SV) peeling off in layers with certain polishes. I have not had this happen to me often enough to make any comments, nor have I studied the ingredients to judge it fairly from a scientific point of view ... so that is very unhelpful of me on both accounts. However, from a very simple point of view, obviously the formulas don't want to play nice.
What base/color/SV combos do not work for you?
At the very least now we can all