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Get the Perfect French Manicure with this Transparent Nail Polish.

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  • Post last modified:September 26, 2023

Nail treatments have always been a special indulgence for me. Ever since I had my initial one at 12 years old, the hour-long, $35 (don’t even get me started on nail art prices!) indulging sessions have been reserved only for events such as extended vacations, high school dances, and family weddings.

However, I almost always end up smearing the polish to the point of no return, despite my utmost efforts to preserve the masterpieces on my fingertips. I’ll leisurely slide my well-groomed hands through my coat sleeves, but half my nails will come out looking like they engaged in a boxing match with the material inside — and lost. I’ll jump into my car and accidentally hit my thumb on the steering wheel, leaving a massive dent in my freshly painted nails. I’ll wash and dry my hands with sticky polish and end up with an imprint of the cloth on my nail beds.

Over the years, my streak of smudging made me lose interest in nail treatments completely, and I began embracing the natural appearance for everyday life and any event. Then the Perfect Formula Pink Gel Coat (Purchase It, $30, arrived in my Glossybox subscription two years ago. (If you haven’t heard of Glossybox, it’s a monthly subscription box for high-end beauty products.)

From the initial stroke of the bubblegum-tinted transparent layer, I was captivated. My nail beds suddenly glowed with a healthy rose hue, my tips emitted a cotton color rather than their usual eggshell shade, and the polish was fully dried in just one minute. It was the immediate DIY French manicure I didn’t know I required.

Seriously, take a look at this transformation:

Megan Falk

Just like filling in your eyebrows, applying this natural-looking, quick-drying polish makes you feel composed even when you’re wearing a messy bun and hoodie. The formulation contains an optical brightener to eliminate any yellow appearance in your tips, along with keratin, making the transparent layer an actual shield for your nails.

This was another advantage: After a few uses, my formerly fragile and flexible nails no longer fractured after the slightest flex in the incorrect path.

The varnish’s chip-resistant formulation can endure the daily usage and depreciation of typing and weightlifting, and it can even withstand the efforts of the most determined nail-polish pickers. Perfect Formula suggests eliminating your layer once a week before re-applying, but your French manicure can endure much longer than that: I’ve left my varnish on for a month, and my grown-out nail beds were the only indication of its old age.

Thanks to this effortless French manicure nail varnish, completing everyday tasks after my nails are painted no longer has to become a game of Operation. And the neat and refined appearance isn’t reserved for rare occasions anymore. Certainly, I skipped the nail salon and applied a layer of the pink formulation before my college graduation and every job interview, but I also swipe it on before going to Target on a Saturday morning or visiting my favorite coffee shop.

Considering one long-lasting bottle costs less than one salon manicure, I can’t imagine I’ll give up my at-home alternative any time soon.

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