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I am a bit of a nail polish fiend - I have nail polishes in pretty much any conceivable colour and if a magazine offers a free nail polish I am likely to buy it. As a result I have a sizeable collection but I am always tempted by new finishes and designs (I even attempted the 3D manicure recently where you stick little beads to your nails!) and as a result wanted to try a matte finish on my nails for a change and because I think it can look really chic. But as I already have a wide range of colours I didn't want to pay out to get the same colours again but in a matte finish, added to the fact that there are fewer matte colours on the market, so I went on the hunt for a matte topcoat which led me to this product (oh that and the fact that it was 3 for 2 at the time as well). ***The packaging*** It comes in a pretty standard looking nail polish bottle with a white lid and the Rimmel branding on it with 12 ml of white matte liquid in it (although there is something about the matte liquid that I think makes it looks classier then a standard top coat). The brush is very good as it's quite wide so you can coat the nail in one stroke which is always a bonus but it's also really easy to use and get into the base of the nail easily as it has a curved end to the brush so it mimics the natural shape of your nail - this also means that you don't have much overspill onto your skin at all. The brush makes it very easy to apply the polish. ***The product*** Well it's a case of it pretty much does what it says on the tin. According to Rimmel "apply over any Rimmel colour to instantly update your manicure. Be gone shiny nails! Matte nails ROCK!", which pretty much describes it really - although you can apply it over any brand of nail polish of course! The moment I applied it to my nails I could see it dampening down the shine of my regular nail polish immediately and after a few seconds you can see the effect on your nails. However, it doesn't just dull the colour of your normal nail polish it also has a velvet effect to it but it's very subtle. What's more the top coat dries really quickly it was touch dry in about a minute of two which is a bonus as there is always one nail that seems to smudge. ***The effect*** The top coat gives a really subtle but classy look to your nails as it takes of the shine of regular nail polish but also changes the look of the texture making it look velvety. When I first bought I was worried that it would just look like I had taken a tissue to damp nail polish and smudged it but with this it looks really professional. I used it at first with a baby blue which looked fab and have tried it with a number of colours since including a watermelon which has to be my favourite combo. A lot of people say matte polish looks best with dark colours, black works very effectively, but I like it with spring like colours as it takes away the candy effect of some lighter colours. For some reason to me wearing candy pink in a matte finish looks older and more sophisticated then in a shiny finish but that's just me, I also find that the matte finish to be very forgiving so if you have cheap polish or don't do a great job on the first coat is covers some mistakes - it's not a miracle worker but it does cover the odd small mistake. Because it is a top-coat it is very versatile and I can try it with all my nail colours which is a bonus and it livens up an older nail colour and makes it feel like a completely new colour which is a real bonus for a nail polish addict like me! If you want to try out a new nail effect it's one of the easiest ones you can try and when you get confident with it you can even use it to create nail art - I can't wait to try matte nails and shiny tips for a subtle French manicure look. ***How long does it last*** The bottle claims that it lasts up to 10 days but as is always the case that is a bit optimistic. However, I would say it prolongs the life of nail polish worn without a top coat. I would say the matte effect starts to dull (for want of a better word) after about 3 days but it is easy to refresh it and I would say in total you get about 5 days wear without chips which is pretty good for a top coat and unless it it a classic red I usually remove it after that time anyway. ***Price*** At £4.99 in Boots (although I bought it on 3 for 2) its not as cheap as some nail polishes but a good price for a top coat and as some matte top-coats are going to set you back over £10 it's a good deal and much cheaper than buying loads of new matte varnishes.
~WHY I BOUGHT IT~ I've always thought that the matte finish on nails looked nice. It's not for everyone and some people think that it's too dull and prefer the glossy look. Most nail varnishes that are coloured and claim to dry with a matte finish are usually in dark, winter-y colours, and this put me off buying them straight away. I prefer what I'd call 'pretty' coloured nails - blues, pinks and purples. As it's also coming to summer, I think bright and bold colours look so much better for the season. ~PRICE AND AVAILABILITY~ When I found out that a clear matte top coat was available to buy that could be applied on top of any colour you like I was really excited to try one. A few brands have now brought them out, but with nail varnishes I do like to stick between Rimmel and Barry M as their ranges seem good for the money. Priced at £4.59 for a 12ml bottle in Boots and Superdrug, I didn't think the Rimmel Matte Topcoat cost too much compared to other brands. ~PACKAGING~ Just like any other nail varnish, it's in a small rounded glass bottle that's transparent to enable you to see the misty coloured liquid and so you can tell how much of the product you have left. The bottle has a white handled lid that unscrews to reveal the clear flat brush. ~APPLYING THE NAIL VARNISH~ The brush is a great shape and allows you to coat a whole nail with just one stroke. It seems to be able to hold a good amount of the varnish so that you can coat two or three nails without needing to dip it back into the bottle. The liquid itself is quite a thick consistency which I like. I'm not the best person for painting my nails, but the consistency makes it easy to apply it quickly to my nails without a messy result. It doesn't run to the edges of my nails, and it smooths the imperfections of the nail varnish I've applied underneath. Being impatient, I often end up smudging my nail varnish before it's gotten chance to dry. Fortunately, this top coat dries almost instantly, and I'd say it's okay to touch within a minute or less. Only one coat of this is needed for each nail, and if you apply more it won't make much of a difference in the appearance of your nail varnish - I don't see the point using it up on more coats. I've used this I'd say about 5 times now, and the bottle still looks nearly full. I'm really pleased that a little goes a long way, so hopefully it will last me a while. ~PERFORMANCE~ Rimmel promises the matte finish to last for "up to 10 days". I never leave nail varnish on for that long anyway and can't comment on having it on for that length of time. After about a week I get bored of the same colour and like to change it to keep it looking fresh. Having worn the matte top coat several times now, the matte finish only last for about three days and then begins to wear off. When the glossy look starts to show again, I suppose there's nothing to stop you reapplying the top coat to get the effect again. Surprisingly though, it lasts longer without chipping. Chipped nail varnish is one of my pet hates, so this is a real bonus for me. I've found that it can easily last about 5 days before it starts to come off. I'd never expect for it to live up to the 10 days as promised, I highly doubt any nail varnish would, so I think that 5-7 days of wear is a decent achievement! Although it lasts well, it's really easy to remove with a cotton pad and nail varnish remover. ~WOULD I RECOMMEND IT?~ I would recommend the matte top coat to anyone wanting a different effect on their nails for quite a small price. Shiny and glossy nails can get a bit boring from time to time and it's always nice to have a bit of a change. I'm really happy with the performance of the nail varnish although I would have hope for the matte effect for a little longer than it did. £4.59 isn't a bad price and I would purchase it again in the future when mine runs out.
I was quite wary of the matte polish trend, since the advertisements never look very flattering, in my opinion. Seeing some matte topcoats coming out really tempted me, though, and it didn't seem like a lot of money to lose. I went for Rimmel's version, since they're usually my one-stop shop when it comes to trying out trends and colours - I trust their brushes and formulas, and they're easy to find and reasonably priced. This bottle was £4.59 from Boots, which isn't the cheapest varnish ever, but the frequent offers take the edge off. PACKAGING: The topcoat comes in Rimmel's typical round bottle, containing 12ml of fluid - a generous amount that does help justify the price. The label describes the product as instantly transforming nail colours into a velvety matte finish that lasts for up to ten days - a tremendous boast that I completely ignore, since no polish ever lasts that long on me! APPLICATION: All you need is one layer of the topcoat over your regular nail polish after it's dried; multiple coats make no visible difference. I really love the brush for this - it's a flat, firm plastic one that spreads out like a spatula, easily covering each nail with one wide stroke. It can hold a surprising amount of liquid, too - I can coat three or four nails without having to dip twice, and without making a mess either. The mattifying effect appears within a few seconds of application, and the topcoat is firmly touch dry within a couple of minutes. I especially like how the varnish smooths over any little mistakes; if I'm a rush to get the matte look and make a few streaks or scraggly layers, the topcoat glosses over them all to create a nice even finish. A real joy if you're prone to doing a bit of a half-baked job, like I often do! It's great to put on top of nudes or pastels for a really soft, more natural look, or on top of metallics to get a frosty effect. WEAR: "Up to ten days" is very ambitious, and as much as I like the product I don't believe it for a second! I find the tips of my nails start to lose a bit of the matte finish after two or three days, and after that they just look more and more like regular glossy varnish that's gone dull. I don't usually leave my nails undone for over a week, though, so can't complain too much there - the matte effect's natural lifespan is just enough for me. As a protective topcoat, it seems as good as any, keeping my nails presentable for two or three days longer than without. The matte look isn't as extreme as I thought it would be - an understated effect, different but subtle, and I like it much more than I thought I would. I'm very glad to have given this a shot, since it's a great way to rejuvenate tired old polishes, or to take the edge off polishes that are bit too bright and high-shine. Definitely a worthwhile investment, giving your collection some extra mileage for only a minor additional cost.