Friday, March 7, 2014

Milani Nail Treatment Smoothé Base Coat REVIEW

Hi chickadees,

I actually completely forgot about reviewing this product for months. Oops. I think I first heard about this base coat on Nouveau Cheap. Then, later when I ran out of my regular base coat and I needed to add something to my order to qualify for free shipping, I added this to my cart on a whim. I think I've gone through maybe two or three bottles of this base coat. Ultimately I'm still not sure about whether I'd recommend it.

Color: The Milani Smoothé Base Coat starts as a milky, white liquid, applies as a translucent white, and dries to a clear matte finish. I personally like having a definitive sign of when the base coat has dried and I think I slightly prefer having a dry base to a slightly sticky base like Orly Bonder. I will note that when I used this base coat with OPI My Pointe Exactly which is a fairly sheer polish, the color of the base coat was noticeable enough that I had to use the polish to cover it up. I think this base coat is fine with cremes and shimmer polishes but you might want to keep the color in mind if you're using a sheer polish. It also seemed to make the polish appear a bit matte.
Formula: I think the consistency of this base coat is more like polish. Orly Bonder is much thinner and more fluid. This base coat goes on smoothly, but it is a little thicker. Also, either as the base coat ages or as you continue to use it, it begins to thicken up until it's impossible to use. Of course, the same can be said for Seche Vite and Orly Bonder but I found that the last bottle of this base coat thickened up much more quickly than I would have liked. I would say I got through about a third or a half of the bottle before it became unusable. It was so thick that it even if I had been able to apply it, it wouldn't have created a smooth base on the nail.
Protection: I don't really have deep ridges in my nails and I don't have much of an issue with polish chipping. During the time I used this base coat with my regular manicures I still didn't have a problem with my polish chipping so it certainly doesn't make things worse and I thought it provided a nice, smooth base for my polish. I don't know if it really prevents staining. I do switch up my polish a lot and my nails did yellow while I was using this base coat. I also don't think this base coat made dark polishes any easier to remove as I had to do quite a lot of clean up when I took of Sally Hansen Red Zin. I guess I would say that this base coat doesn't demonstrably do anything to protect your nails and if that's something that's important to you, I'd look for a different formula from another brand.

CONCLUSION: If you're looking for the minimum required of a base coat (that it provide a smooth barrier between your natural nails and your polish) at a relatively low cost, you could probably do worse than Milani Smoothe Base Coat. I personally didn't find that it did anything special to protect my nails from staining or create an especially smooth base.

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