Gel Nail Polish, £12.50, Sensationail
Hero shade: Kitten Heel
If you’re after a manicure that won’t chip at the first sign of hard work, and potentially last for up to two weeks, you need to try this at-home gel nail brand. Better yet, they’ve just released the first-ever ‘peel-off’ base coat, so you don’t have to soak or file away your colour once you’re ready for a change. Genius.
Professional Nail Lacquer, £16, Deborah Lippman
Hero shade: Naked
You can never have too many nude nail polishes, and this is one of the best. One coat with give you a sheer natural colour, and two will build it up to an opaque, closer to brown than pink, nude.
OPI Nail Lacquer, £12.95, OPI
Hero shade: Malaga Wine
The OG for a reason, OPI’s nail colours are our go-to for a variety of shades and long-lasting wear. Tickle My France-y and Bubble Bath are the best neutral nude shades, but Malaga Wine is the most stunning deep red. Pair it with a grey jumper for the perfect mani pic.
Essie Nail Colour, £7.99, Essie
Hero shade: Ballet slippers
Essie is a very worthy rival of OPI, with one of the best chip-resistant top coats in the game. The Queen herself has been wearing Ballet Slippers for over thirty years, so it’s hard to not make it the hero.
Sally Hansen Miracle Gel Nail Polish, £9.99, Sally Hansen
Hero shade: Creme de la creme
Oh, what a day it was when Miracle Gel was released. This super-shiny, gel-like polish is a great alternative for those trying to cut down on their salon spend. Creme de la creme is the ideal almost-white, with a slight pinky tone to keep it less stark.
Butter London Patent Shine 10x Nail Colour, £15, Butter London
Hero shade: Jolly Good
This wonderfully British brand has the best UK-themed shade names and the quality is exceptional, too.
CND Vinylux, £9.95, CND
Hero shade: Satin Pyjamas
CND’s Vinylux polishes have an amazing consistency. It spreads evenly and thickly (without bubbling) that you could almost get away with just one coat. Satin Pyjamas is the perfect not-too-pink, not-too-brown nude.
Nails Inc Velvet Velour Nail Polish, £11, Nails Inc
Hero shade: Fashion Fix
You can never go wrong with a Nails Inc gel mani, and the at-home polishes are just as good. Fashion Fix is the grown up pink shade you’ve been looking for.
Orly Nail Polish, £11, Orly
Hero shade: Black Cherry
Nothing beats an Orly applicator brush. The fanned out tip allows for easier coverage, with no edges missed and the lid has been designed with extra grip for the butter-fingers among us.
Zoya Professional Lacquer, £11.70, Zoya
Hero shade: Haruko
Zoya has been praised for being the ‘longest wearing natural nail polish’ – and it does live up to the hype. It’s free from toluene, formaldehyde, DBP and camphor. Haruko is one of the most popular shades, a mesmerising metallic purple that’s almost impossible to get your hands on.
Smith & Cult Nail Lacquer, £19, Smith & Cult
Hero shade: Shattered Souls
We’d buy this polish for the bottle alone – so luxe! Not only do they look amazing atop a dresser, but the formula offers good coverage, especially the glitter coats.