I have a not-so-secret secret. I am a nail polish addict. After coming to the realization that I own 50+ polishes, you would think I would call it quits. However, my inner lacquer addict was absolutely crushed when I finished off a bottle of my favorite pedicure color, and I was driven to hunt down another perfect shade… because, you know, in my current collection there just simply isn’t a suitable substitute. Crazy.
Browsing the endcaps at Walgreens, I came across the new Sally Hansen Miracle Gel polishes, a no-UV light nail polish claiming to last up to 14 days. I have to see this, I thought. They promote the use of the gel polish in combination with the gel top coat, and they offer value sets, so that’s what I went with. Not all 45 colors were available in the value set packs, so I chose 210 Pretty Piggy, a vibrant pink with a hint of orange.
If you’ve used the Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure polishes, you’ll be quite familiar with the shape of the bottle and the wide, rounded end brush. I enjoy the wide brush, but the stem always seems to be coated in polish and doesn’t wipe off on the neck of the bottle very easily, often resulting in a bead of polish that creeps down the brush as you’re applying it.
The consistency of the polish is a little thin, but not drippy. Two coats was a must, and on a couple nails I found I really wanted a third coat. The top coat is a nice, thick consistency that easily spreads over the nail. No problems there.
After applying the gel color and top coat and allowing my nails to dry, I went about my daily business. Roughly three hours after applying, I made my bed (removing and putting on a fitted sheet), and the gel scrunched up on one of my nails. I should have known better than the be so rough on my nails on Day 1, but really? Three hours and not completely dry? It still surprises me. It shouldn’t take a polish that long to set.
The polish held up incredibly well Day 1 through 5. The first several days there were barely any sign of wear aside from some small dents on one of my nails (another casualty of making my bed on Day 1? I can’t say for certain when it happened). Around Day 5 I had my first chip on my thumb nail and pointer finger on the corners. All of the other nails were still fine.
On Day 7 I noticed the tips of the nails were starting the fade off- not chip like a normal polish, but more like the color was rubbing away (typical of gel polishes and much more pleasant than chipped polish).
Day 8 and 9 my nails began chipping around the cuticles. The chips were small and not very noticeable, and I probably could have gotten away with wearing the color for another day or two, but I broke a nail (womp womp) and decided it was time to call it a day.
Nine days of wear is pretty impressive. The Sally Hansen Miracle Gel polish definitely outlasts many of my China Glaze, OPI and Julep polishes (even with Seche Vite top coat), and when it does chip and wear off, it’s a bit more graceful. If you aren’t rough on your nails, I image you really could get 14 days of wear out of one application, but my guess is I will never be that lucky.
Pretty Piggy is a great color for summer, and a perfect year-round pedicure shade. The top coat gives it a nice semi-gloss finish. The set sells for $14.99 and single polishes sell for $9.99. The set I bought comes with a coupon inside for $2 off your next Sally Hansen Miracle Gel purchase of $9.99 or more.
All things considered, this polish is above average, and a step up from the Complete Salon Manicure line that I’ve grown so accustomed to. However, if you’re a gel polish lover, this is not an exact match. It’s definitely a hybrid of some sort, but it’s not the real deal. I would recommend this if you’re looking for a no-light needed, gel-like polish with longer than average wear and vibrant color. UV lights are a pain, and real gel polish can be tricky to apply (you have to be very precise), and gels tend to be more expensive. I think Sally Hansen Gel Miracle is a good, affordable alternative, but know that the brush isn’t perfect, the formula takes awhile to dry, and you will still experience chips.