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15 Holy Grail Nail Polish Shades

Last updated on : April 18 2019

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Women today have many responsibilities, including careers, children, relationships, family, exercise, and so much more. In the midst of all this, we still want to look our best from our fingertips to our toes, especially the nails.

Here is a list of the top 15 nail shades that are great go-to colors from reputable brands.

Essie, “Ballet Slippers”

essie ballet slippers nail enamel

According to this article by Glamour Magazine, this delicate shade of pale pink has been around since 1982. The name comes from founder Essie Weingarten’s fond childhood memories of getting her nails done with her mother after ballet practice.

In 1989, Queen Elizabeth, known to be particular about nail polish colors, requested that a bottle of Ballet Slippers be sent to Buckingham Palace, giving it her royal seal of approval. If it’s good enough for a queen, it’s good enough for me.

Sally Hansen Color Therapy, “In My Element”

sally hansen color therapy nail polish producy

Renowned beauty and lifestyle magazine Cosmopolitan endorsed this line of colors in a recent article, naming it the number one best nail polish brand of all time.

The Color Therapy line comes infused with argan oil, so it hydrates and heals your cuticles and nails instead of drying them out like most other polishes.

Metallics are just as good as neutrals for matching any outfit, and the shimmer is just edgy enough without being a full glitter polish.

Chanel Le Vernis, “Rouge Essential”

Chanel Le Vernis Nail Polish

We may not all be able to afford to fill our closets with Chanel, but this bottle is worth the splurge. The Chanel brand is known for quality and elegance, and this perfect shade of red is no exception.

Endorsed by fashion bible Vogue Magazine in this article for its Bioceramics and Ceramides that strengthen and nourish your natural nails, you are sure to feel sophisticated and luxurious with every application of this classic color.

Butter London, “Sterling” Patent Shine 10X

butter london nail varnish bottle

The clean ingredients and cruelty-free promise of the Butter brand make them a standout before we even get to its features, including a wear time of 10 days without chipping and Bamboo extract to strengthen your nails.

Allure Magazine endorses Butter as proudly 8-free, meaning their formulas do not contain formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, camphor, TPHP, toluene, DBP, xylene, or ethyl tosylamide. This fresh gray color is a neutral that is flattering on many skin tones.

OPI, “I Am What I Amethyst”

Opi nail varnish bottle

OPI is a brand known for salon quality polishes at an affordable price, and this line of gel colors improves on its already-impressive staying power.

This super light shade with a hint of mystical blue lavender is the perfect neutral for winter or spring. Check out this article from Allure proving how bulletproof this line of polishes truly is.

JINsoon, “Absolute White”

Jin Soon Absolute white nail enamel bottle

Founded by a celebrity manicurist, the JINsoon brand is known for its non-toxic and highly pigmented formulas. This Forbes article tells the story of founder Jin Soon Choi and how she turned her passion and talent for nail artistry into a beauty empire.

White is an innocent and surprising neutral that provides flattering contrast for any skin tone, and JINsoon’s one-coat formula is perfect for such a light color that could require multiple layers from other brands.

Deborah Lippmann, “After Midnight”

after midnight branded nail varnish bottle

Dark blue shades are perfect for winter and fall, or even hot summer nights on the beach. Founder Deborah Lippmann started as a manicurist to the stars and various fashion houses before launching her line of 5-free polishes. She makes her products without formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, camphor, DBP, or toluene.

According to Lippmann’s website, actresses Reese Witherspoon, Kate Winslet, Penelope Cruz, and Renee Zellweger were all manicured by Deborah. And they wore her nail colors when they accepted their Oscars.

Orly, “Won’t Chip Polish Shield”

Orly Won't Chip Nail polish

Okay, so technically this isn’t a color, but every manicure needs a quality top-coat to dry the polish, add shine, and make the color last.

Orly is a cruelty-free and vegan brand made in the USA, and boast not only a variety of colors but bases, top coats, and manicure tools as well. This affordable top coat will keep your polish perfectly in place for up to two weeks.

Smith & Cult, “Consequence of Fame”

smith & Cult gold metallic nail varnish

Vegan, cruelty-free, and 8-free, this brand is good for the environment and your nails. Plus, the packaging is so adorable you will want to display it on your vanity proudly.

You will feel like a rockstar in this gold metallic color, which works as a great neutral to pair with any outfit.

Priti NYC, “Baby Toes Cactus”

Baby toe's cactus Nail Varnish by Priti

Known as a pioneer in luxury eco-friendly nail polish, this brand’s founder was inspired when looking for a non-toxic polish to use while she was pregnant. Now they coordinate with fashion brands like Stella McCartney, Coach, Tory Burch, and Tommy Hilfiger for fashion week shows.

Every girl should have a bright signature color in her polish arsenal, and this vibrant shade of yellow is sure to make you a stand out.

Essie, “First Base Base Coat”

First Base Base Coat By Essie Nail Polish

Again, technically this isn’t a color, but your favorite nail color (and your dollar) will go a lot further if you start your manicure with a good base coat.

Essie isn’t on this list twice for no reason.

As a long-standing nail polish brand, we trust them to protect our fingernails and keep our polish on with this relatively inexpensive base coat.

ILNP, “Secret Society”

ILNP Secret Society Nail Lacquer

ILNP is a brand that proclaims to be obsessed with perfection, and judging from their excellent variety of colors and rave reviews, we can’t disagree.

They do not test on animals or use any ingredients from companies that do. This shimmery, holographic beige shade is the perfect twist on a classic nude.

Deborah Lippmann, “Happy Birthday”

Glitter nail polish

It doesn’t have to be your birthday for you to wear this multi-colored glitter polish! We chose this shade for glitter polish because you can brush it over a variety of base colors to match the glitter or apply a few coats on its own for a sparkly mermaid effect.

Tip: when working with glitter polish, use a beauty blender or makeup sponge to apply instead of a regular nail brush and dab the glitter onto your base coat.

This tip allows more glitter to attach to the sponge and the nail with fewer gaps.

Yves Saint Laurent La Laque Couture, “Rose Romantique”

YSL Nail Polish Rose Romantique

You will feel like you are “dipping your fingers into the world of couture” as the brand promises when you use this gorgeous polish.

Not only is this pink shade rosy in color, but it is also formulated with rose oil to nourish your nails and prevent them from breaking.

This opaque pink will have you feeling flirty and romantic, and is perfect for spring and summer.

Trust Fund Beauty, “Fun in Dysfunction”

Trust Fund Beauty, “Fun in Dysfunction”

Despite the name, you don’t need to have a trust fund to afford or wear this beauty brand.

According to their website, all their products are vegan, non-toxic and cruelty-free. The fact that this gorgeous cool medium purple is a super-fun shade that will go with any skin tone is just a bonus.

Summary

So go on and give a few of these shades a try! Any of them should last throughout your busy day and keep you feeling polished, no matter how dirty you have to get your hands. You can’t go wrong with these, and you should have at least a few of them in your drawer.

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