How to nail nude varnish

By Elsa Mcalonan


Nude nails are one of the biggest beauty trends we've seen for years.

From barely-there pinks to deep taupes, Elsa McAlonan spent ten days wearing a different shade on every finger and toe.

But which pale polish lasted more than a week and which one chipped after just one day?


Bourjois So Laque Glossy in Oh So Rose, £ 6.99, Boots

A subtle soft pink which even with two coats looks transparent. I love the shade - it is an elegant, grown-up pale pink, which dries fast but flaked after three days.

Kure Bazaar Nail Lacquer in Cappuccino, £14.95,

The 85 per cent natural formula dries quickly to a high shine in a soft taupe shade. It started to peel off after three days.

Bourjois So Laque Glossy in Oh So Rose
Laura Mercier Nail Lacquer in En Pointe

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Autograph Ultimate Wear Nail Colour in Antique Pink, £6,  Marks & Spencer

This has a thicker consistency than the others and is a salmon pink. It was slow to dry and chipped after three days.

Estee Lauder Pure Color Nail Lacquer in Ballerina Pink, £14.50,

A delicate shell pink and easier to apply than the others - the top of the brush is sturdy to give you a good grip. It dries quickly and stayed on for ten days.


Butter London 3-Free Nail Lacquer-Vernis in Shandy, £12,

The shade is a thick, pale peachy nude that covers the nail in one coat. This colour was the one most admired by others, but it was also the first to chip after a day.

Revlon Colorstay Longwear Nail Enamel in Sandy Nude, £7.99, Boots

This has a thin consistency, but gives good coverage. It is more of a peachy nude. It took ten minutes to dry, but lasted six days.

Laura Mercier Nail Lacquer in En Pointe, £12.50, SpaceNK

a very short brush and a runny consistency make this difficult to apply. You need two coats to really see it properly, but it lasted seven days with no chipping.

From barely-there pinks to deep taupes, Elsa McAlonan wore a different shade on every finger

From barely-there pinks to deep taupes, Elsa McAlonan wore a different shade on every finger

Essie Sugar Daddy, £7.99, Boots

This has the best brush - one stroke was enough to cover the whole nail. It dries quickly and lasted two weeks without chipping.

GOSH Special Edition Nail Lacquer in High School Flirt, £4.99, Superdrug

A pleasing pale beige, this has quite a thick consistency. You only need one coat and it is fast-drying. Great value for money and it stayed on for seven days.

Rococo Nail Lacquer in Babette Luxe, £12, SpaceNK

This needs two coats to see the soft, apricot pink shade, which has a subtle gold shimmer. It stayed on for seven days.


Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Mauve Along,  £6.99, Boots

The flat brush makes application easy and one stroke covers all the nails without any drips. The colour stayed on for a week without starting to fade.

Famous Nail Addict Nail Polish in Smoothie, £3.99, Superdrug

This range is exceptional value. It is a creamier toned nude and looked even lighter after two coats. It has a thick consistency, dries quickly, and it stayed on for two weeks without chipping.

Accessorize Polish in Fudge
Essie Sugar Daddy

Accessorize Polish in Fudge, Essie Sugar Daddy

New CID Cosmetics i-polish in Bread and Butter Pudding, £10,

A very attractive pale mushroom shade. it goes on like a dream. I found this was one of the longest lasting polishes and it didn't fade or chip.

2True Fast Dry Colour Quick Nail Polish in Shade 11,  £1.99, Superdrug

This was one of the least expensive polishes I tried, but also one of the longest lasting.

Mavala Nail Polish in Sapporo, £4.50, John Lewis

This is really easy to apply, with a good-sized brush - perfect for travelling. The polish has staying power and didn't chip.

Max Factor Glossfinity in Pink Whisper, £5.99, Boots

You could get away with only one coat of this, it stayed put and is super-shiny, too. The deeper nude would suit those with darker skin tones best.

Kiko Celebration Nail Lacquer in Satin Taupe, £4.90,

Another good shade for darker skin tones. The nail polish has a strengthening and hardening action. Special resins create a strong, elastic layer that enhances shine and brilliance of the colour.

MUA Nail Polish in Shade 11,  £1, Superdrug

This is the best budget buy of the bunch. The shade I tried looked like the colour of vanilla ice cream. The polish had staying power and didn't chip.

Model's Own nail polish in Naked Shimmer, £5, Boots

A smooth, hard-wearing shade, this stayed on for a full two weeks with no chips or fading.

Accesorize nail polish in Fudge, £2.95, Superdrug

This deeper rose beige nude has a good brush for easy application. The colour stayed on well and this didn't chip. The fast-drying formula produces a hard wearing, high gloss.

The comments below have not been moderated.

Best nude nail varnish is rimmel ivory for French manicure! Looks awesome and stays on for at least 5 days of doing everything!

Click to rate     Rating   5

Funnily enough miss sporty is the one nail varnish that doesn't chip! People a lot it but I honestly doesn't chip and only needs one coat.

Click to rate     Rating   5

Funny that the cheap brands last the longest overall.

Click to rate     Rating   37

Nude is almost all I wear. I like Sally Hansen's "Shell We Dance?" (That's "shell," not "shall.") Essie's "Ballet Slippers" is extremely popular in the States among people who prefer nude shades. Just cover your nude shades with a coat of clear varnish, and they'll last quite a while. Moreover, when they do chip, the chips are never obvious. I use just one coat of color and one of clear for a well-groomed but very natural effect.

Click to rate     Rating   5

I am a HUGE Essie Sugar Daddy fan and use it for French with Essie White for the tips but as of the last few months the polish does not last more than a few days even with trying different bottles. It is so bad that I have switched brands to OPI which lasts much longer 1-2 weeks.

Click to rate     Rating   14

She must have sat like a mandarin then for 2 weeks - I can't even last 2 weeks without shellac chipping!!!

Click to rate     Rating   45

How to wear it: on your nails.

Click to rate     Rating   34

Everyone raves about Essie but I'm not impressed. I find you have to put several coats on to get the colour nice. I quite like the Maybelline Forever Strong and nails inc. ranges

Click to rate     Rating   25

I have Essie in Tea & Cakes which is also a very nice pale pink/nude colour - less pink than the one shown. Essie brushes are good. they are wide & flat and one sweep covers. I tend to use pale colours most as chips & fading on the tips of nails are less noticeable. I also think pearly colours are better than plain ones. Plain colours tend to show brushmarks or uneven application more easily.

Click to rate     Rating   23

Shellac is the best. It's a bit costly to start with but you only need to do your nails every two weeks. It's strong and doesn't chip and my nails grow a lot stronger too.

Click to rate     Rating   32
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