how do you like my california girl manicure? i am wearing french affair by essie with silver dollar by revlon on my ring finger. i used my konad stamp and the same silver dollar polish for the palm tree. the main reason for this post is to introduce you guys to seche vite fast dry topcoat. i had never heard of it before i read ying’s (from my dressy ways) five must-haves over on the average girls guide. i truly thought all top coats were the same…yeah, yeah…fast drying…blah blah. THIS STUFF IS THE REAL DEAL. apparently my girl mandy over at life in the fashion lane has been singing their praises as well. i always wear a base coat, two coats of polish and usually a stamp too and this top coat dries all layers in like minutes. i am not kidding. i am still angry that i bought a new bottle of fast dry oil drops because now i don’t even need them!!!

p.s. after i wrote this, i read reviews on amazon and i have to agree on the chipping comments…my mani did chip on day three. my usual OPI top coat lasts for about a week but it also takes a loooong time to dry. but as often as i change my nail polish…i still think it is a great top coat.

p.s.s. and THEN i read that it has a warning label on it that it contains toluene. you see…this is why i lose hours on the internet. so if anyone knows of a top coat that is as fabulous as seche vite without the harmful chemicals…please let me know in the comments!

23 Comments ( Reply )

  1. Neris
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 1:26 am

    OMG! You are killing me with your manicures! Every time I see your latest one, I always think “It can’t get better than this one”…. And then I see the next one and I realize that it CAN get better! Love this one so much, definitely my favorite so far (but I’m sure I’ll say that for the next one as well) πŸ™‚

    Fashion Fractions

  2. Mandy
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 1:55 am

    This is just too cute! I have to agree with Neris…they get better and better! You are quickly becoming Miss Manicure! You crack me up with all the research! One tip I have learned is that you need to really use the top coat polish the edges of your nail and paint underneath in a fluid motion, if possible (does that make sense?). The longest I have gotten out of my manicure using Seche as a TC is 6 days. The base coat is just as important! I will be posting about that on Wednesday! THANK you for the shout out! Hope that tip helps!

  3. Mandy
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 1:57 am

    P.S. You and Emily of Cupcakes and Cashmere must be on the same wave length as she just posted her manicure of pink and silver nails! Check it out! How fun!

  4. Penny Pincher Fashionista
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 3:52 am

    This is so similar to @byEmily’s that she posted today! I like the California with the palm tree that you added to yours, though!! πŸ™‚

  5. carlinn
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 3:54 am

    This sis so cute!! Love it πŸ™‚

  6. maura
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 5:00 am

    I love seche vite! I had the same problem with chipping when I started using it but for me it had to do with the application. When I first started using it I would put a ton on (which is really easy to do since its so thick) and it would chip within a few days, but now I use a thinner coat and I’ve had manicures last at least 1.5 weeks without chipping.

    love your mani of the day posts!

  7. Diana
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 5:04 am

    This manicure is absolutely adorable…love the color combinations and the palm tree!!! As far as a good top coat, I’ve been using Sally Hansen’s Insta-Dry Anti-Chip Top Coat for a few years now. It definitely speeds up the drying time and lasts for at least a week. The only downside is that I usually don’t get to use the entire bottle because by the time it’s about half way empty it gets a little thick…but it’s so good I go out and buy another bottle πŸ™‚ Hope this helps!

  8. Amber - Real Girl Glam
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 5:09 am

    I tried Seche Vite after all the RAVE reviews and mine chipped like crazy. So I got ‘In a Hurry’ top coat from Sally Beauty and haven’t had any problems. It dries just as fast, and doesn’t have that funky smell either. LOVE the pink & silver mani. SO Cute!

  9. cadrommy
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 6:13 am

    LOVE the mani! You are so creative with your nails. I don’t have the patience. πŸ˜› Thanks for the shout out and the research on Seche Vite. You’re so funny. I’m sure you’ll update us if you find something better (as in safer) I wonder if that’s why my nails have splitting like crazy? UGH!

  10. Anna
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 6:22 am

    So unfortunately I don’t any amazing hints for a top coat BUT, my nanna passed on to my mum and my mum passed on to me – to just dip your painted fingers (still wet, just painted) in to a small bowl of ice water. It’s chemical free and as natural as you can get πŸ™‚ It sets it as fast as any top coat I’ve ever used so that would be my advice!
    p.s your mani’s are insane though – so so so perfect.

    Anna xo

  11. Elizabeth
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 6:41 am

    Love this mani!

    I use the Sally Hansen Double Duty Strengthening Base/Top Coat. I used to use only OPI but when my bottle tipped over and leaked out everywhere, I tried this new one. Love it so far! I have not had any chipping issues. I don’t know about the safety of it though. At least it’s cheap enough if you end up not liking it! πŸ™‚

  12. The Blonde @ Stylish3
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 6:51 am

    Your manicures are always so impressive! I love this one.

  13. Laurel
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 8:15 am

    I WANT THOSE NAILS. Too bad my wonky hands can’t do such fine precision painting…sigh.

  14. Ingrid
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 11:01 am

    I love all your beautiful manicures! I too have been in search of the best 3 free top coat and a great 3 free nail strengthener. I don’t know if it the summer or what but my nails have been peeling and cracking and I am looking for a great strengthener if you have any suggestions. Good luck!

  15. AlyssonJean
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 11:22 am

    looks amazing!! did you use a stencil for the palm tree and California?!

  16. Kate
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 11:28 am

    I am a nail polish addict too! I use Sally Hansen’s Double Duty top coat and then I use Sally Hansen’s insta-dri top coat over that. My mani’s last can last about a week, but the real test is that they will usually hold up after 3 nights at work (i am a pediatric nurse in an ICU so it’s pretty tough on my nails).

  17. kristina@beancakes ❀
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 11:46 am

    wow! i love your mani ~ so pretty ~ the gold and the pink! and the name california love is just so fitting πŸ˜‰
    xo ~ kristina

  18. Skinny Jeans Mom
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 3:37 pm

    Lovely! Being a southern California native, I couldn’t imagine living elsewhere. Love the look, easy, laid-back style, what cali is all about!

    Find me at:

  19. Cheryl
    Jul 26, 2011 @ 4:48 pm

  20. Megan
    Jul 29, 2011 @ 2:24 pm

    Wow love the nails, can’t believe you did those yourself! Wish I could do that.

    M x

  21. noley
    Jul 29, 2011 @ 2:45 pm

    try poshe top coat… fast like SV but no bad chems. πŸ™‚

  22. Miss Rockwell
    Jul 30, 2011 @ 7:14 am

    This is gorgeous! I’m hosting a DIY manicure party on August 12 for FBFF. I can’t wait to see your new and exciting design!

  23. Yvonne
    Aug 13, 2011 @ 12:19 pm

    I use Essie’s Good to Go.. and I like that πŸ™‚