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Anna G. Larson, Published October 30 2013

Inexpensive nail polish outshines pricy brands

FARGO – From 99-cent Wet n Wild nail polish to $30 hues by Chanel, I’ve tried them all.

The nail polishes with the richest color and longest wear, in my experience, usually cost at least $8 a bottle, so I was interested when I saw CoverGirl’s new Outlast Stay Brilliant Nail Gloss.

Signage for the affordable (about $4.75) one-step petite polishes claims glossy color that lasts up to a week. The square shape of the smaller-than-average nail polish bottles mimics packaging of some high-end brands I’ve tried.

I purchased Toasted Almond from the 45-color collection, a grayish brown appropriate for autumn.

To prep my nails for painting, I swiped a cotton pad soaked in nail polish remover over each nail. After that, I applied a base coat (China Glaze brand) and two layers of the polish.

The polish has a “base coat, high-gloss color and a chip-resistant top coat” all in one, but I like to protect my nails from discoloring, especially with dark polishes.

I applied two coats of Toasted Almond, even though the bottle says only one coat is needed. The color wasn’t rich enough after my first pass.

My nails looked fantastic and glossy after the polish dried. They stayed chip-free for four full days – longer than I can say for Chanel polish. On the fifth day, they only chipped minimally, and by the sixth, they looked heavily chipped.

The bottom line: Although I had to use two coats of polish instead of the one the directions promise, I’ll be stocking up on these affordable, petite polishes that have staying power.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Anna G. Larson at (701) 241-5525