I’ve been known to joke that a nail polish collection is a poor girl’s fetish. We’re too broke for frequent trips to the salon and there’s no way we could afford a collection of designer shoes or handbags. So instead we treat ourselves to varnish. Well, according to a Time Magazine article published earlier this year that philosophy goes even further with the journalist suggesting that nail polish sales (along with cheap booze) go up during recession and times of economic crises. It got me thinking about nail polish and which cruelty-free brands are giving us the best bang for our buck.
Mode Cosmetics = 16c per mil
At $2.45 a pop for 12ml this is by far the cheapest nail polish. I’ve tried Party Girl and Cool As and managed to get five days of wear out of it. It’s also 3-FREE (meaning it does not contain nasty chemicals such as dibutyl pthalate, toluene and formaldehyde*). Unfortunately, it’s hard to come by so order online through Heritage Brands and factor in shipping costs.
Face of Australia = 38c-70c
The colour pro enamel range works out at 70c – more expensive than Natio, although in my experience it is not as long-lasting or opaque. Kate has been happy with her Show Off purchase but I was less than thrilled with Scream and Cool Cotton. Their new limited edition Carnivale range works out to be a reasonable 45c per mil and the rest including the glitterati are a measly 38c per mil. Also 3-FREE.
Natio = 66c per mil
All three of the Natio ranges come to 66c per mil. Besides Lemon which was a total dud I’ve been so happy with this brand. My favourites would be Coral, Fuschia and Burgundy. It is 3-FREE and fairly long-lasting. Natio tends to be my first choice for nail polish and I currently own 16 bottles – yikes! What a junkie!
Australis = 80c-90c per mil
This one surprised me. I assumed Australis would be cheaper than Natio. But you pay 80c for the standard colour, glitter or tops coats and 90c per mil for a special effects including crackle and crystal polish. Australis has some brilliant colours and my favourites include Valentine and Bombshell. Once a brush hair did come loose and stuck to my nail ruining the polish but that aside this is a great polish option. Also 3-FREE.
Innoxa = $1.16 per mil
These bottles are so suave and sophisticated. I actually bought a limited edition called Tangerine which I like more than Natio’s Tangerine. I’ve also got the super pretty and summery Pomegranate. I’ve already worn it twice this spring (watch this space for a review). Innoxa is also 3-FREE.
* Dibutyl pthalate, toluene and formaldehyde are toxic chemicals which are said to cause health problems and birth defects. I’m a big David Suzuki fan and found his article on nail polish interesting.
What’s your favourite nail polish? And is 3-FREE important to you or do you think it’s all hogwash? Let us know in the comments below.