Nail products seem to me to be pretty toxic. Nail polishes, removers, lacquers, etc. are known to contain ingredients that are carcinogenic and harmful to our health. Manicurists inhale toxic fumes all day, and customers put that stuff on their hands and nails, where it’s absorbed by the body. If using gel, customers are exposing their skin to harmful UV-A light, increasing chances of skin cancer.
Enter Dazzle Dry Nails. My first experience with Dazzle Dry at a salon was at The Arrabelle Spa in Vail, Colorado. I went in for a manicure, explaining that I wanted the plain old-fashioned kind, no gel. Not to worry, they said. The Arrabelle only has one kind of polish that is a lacquer and is much less toxic than gel.
I loved the results. My manicure lasted over a week, and I’ve been back again several times. It’s best if I wear gloves to do the dishes, but I can do all other daily activities as normal. (I should probably wear dish washing gloves, anyway, for my dry hands, but that’s for another time.)
So, what is this stuff, really?
Dazzle Dry Nails was created by a female bio-organic chemist named Vivian, in response to the health hazards of conventional nail care. It’s non-toxic, vegan, hypoallergenic, and made in the USA. Also, it is supposed to dry within 5 minutes of application and rival traditional lacquer nail polishes, with that great shine and long-lasting wear. Per Vivian, she created a
“line of nail lacquers free from harmful chemicals, animal byproducts, and animal testing. To this day, Dazzle Dry is the only quick-drying, long-lasting natural nail care system of its kind.”https://dazzledry.com/pages/about-vivian
Sounds too good to be true? Well, at $62.00 for a sample set, it better live up to its advertisements. Let’s find out if it is.
It’s a Process
Using this line of nail lacquers is a 4-step application process – wipe off / clean the nail, apply base coat, nail polish, and top coat. No quick drying sprays or anything gimmicky. After using the non-toxic Dazzle Dry Nails products, wait 5 minutes and you are supposed to have long-lasting lacquered nails.
Step 1: Nail Prep
The Nail Prep is basically a nail polish remover/alcohol solution, as far as I can tell. Its purpose is to prime the nail by cleaning and drying it.
One thing to note, the Nail Prep is to be used after your nails are already clean, meaning that you have removed any previous nail polish.
The directions say to use one soaked lint-free applicator pad per hand so that you use enough product and have a clean pad to do a good job. (Is this just marketing so you use more of the product?) Easy enough to put on a cotton pad and swipe the nails.
The Nail Prep smells like nail polish remover, although not nearly as strong. It does leave the nail and nail bed dried out looking and feeling.
Maybe alcohol would work just as well?
Step 2: Base Coat
The Base Coat is the glue of the whole operation, serving to adhere the polish to the nail. The bottle contains a clear polish that gets cloudy at room temperature or cooler.
Before using it, soak the Base Coat in hot water until it’s clear. I run the tap until hot, fill a 1/4 measuring cup, and place the Base Coat in it. It only takes a few seconds to heat up enough. Maybe in warmer climates, heating isn’t even necessary.
Once warmed, this product is pretty thin and liquid-y. It’s odorless, too.
When applying the Base Coat, you’re supposed to “apply generously” and wrap it all the way around the tip of your nail. Personally, the wrapping part is difficult because I keep my nails pretty short. If your nails extend past your finger tips, you won’t have any problem, though.
We’re instructed to allow the Base Coat to dry to a matte finish before applying the polish (step 3). After 3 minutes, my nails feel dry but aren’t matte. After 6 minutes, they still aren’t matte, but I’m moving on to next step, anyway.
Step 3: Nail Lacquer
The Nail Lacquer (or colored polish) smells the slightest bit like nail polish. I have to put my nose pretty close to the bottle to smell it. The scent disappears immediately when applied.
I’ve used this whole Dazzle Dry Nail system twice before. Each time I open the Nail Lacquer bottle, it’s a little more thick, streaky, and clumpy. After only 2 uses, there are dried clumps of polish around bottle rim. Evidently, this is to be expected; There’s a note on the website saying to use Dazzle Dry Revive* if the lacquer (and/or top coat) loses its viscosity.
The first application is to be a thin coat. The second, apply “generously”. As expected, wrap both coats around the free edges of your nail.
This step dries super fast to a matte finish. Maybe it takes 30 seconds?
*Dazzle Dry Revive is another alcohol based product. The ingredients are different from the Nail Prep but I can’t help wondering what would happen if you substitute one for the other. I haven’t done this. If you do, let me know how it goes! If I’m going to continuing using the Nail Lacquer, it looks like I’ll have to purchase the Revive soon, though.
Step 4: Top Coat
The Top Coat is the sealant. It’s clear, thick, gelatinous, and super easy to apply. It smoothes out some of the streakiness and clumps from the previous step, but not all of them.
The instructions do not say to wait until the lacquer (previous step) is dry, but no worries there. As I said, that lacquer dries super fast, so it will be dry by this step, anyway.
Again, we’re instructed to “apply generously”, and wrap around the free edges of your nail. This coat adds a nice shine, and it really does dry within 5 minutes.
Of the base coat, lacquer, and top coat, the top coat has the strongest nail polish scent. Even so, it’s really only present momentarily, when you have the bottle close to your face or nose.
I am ga-ga over my Dazzle Dry manicure at the nail salon. But at-home application has been hit or miss. The application process is easy enough and fast. However, the polish doesn’t last as long as the salon’s did, likely because a professional manicurist is more skilled and does a better job! Also, I don’t wrap the polish around the free edge of my nail very well, nor do I prep cuticles and nails.
Regarding the steps themselves, I’m using up some bottles (like the Nail Prep and Lacquer) faster than others. Clearly, I’m not “applying generously” enough with the other steps. In addition, the Nail Lacquer is just thicker, and I’ll use more of it no matter what.
The Bottom Line
Overall, this product is expensive. Is it worth it? I’m on the fence.
On the one hand, there’s nothing else on the market like it that’s as safe and high-performing. Dazzle Dry is basically odorless. The brand discloses every single ingredient. It’s vegan, nontoxic, hypoallergenic, and 100% made in the USA. Finally, Dazzle Dry really does dry in 5 minutes, and, if applied properly, it does last as long as lacquer.
More good news: There are lots of beautiful and fun colors to choose from. If you prefer a matte finish, there’s a matte top coat. They also sell other nail and skincare items, which I’m no doubt going to trysoon.
I can say this product is definitely worth going to a salon and getting a professional manicure with.
On the other hand, Dazzle Dry is quite expensive to own. To reach maximum efficacy, you need a bunch of their products. Also, if you keep your nails short like I do, you’ll never be able to apply the product correctly. That means your manicure will never last more than a few days.
In all honesty, I’ll probably repurchase some Dazzle Dry products in the future. First, I believe that if my nails were longer, I would have a similar great outcome to what I’ve had from the salon. Second, I just like the idea of this company and want to support it.
That said, I really love my RMS polish (and it’s on sale for $5 instead of $15 right now!), and it’s lasting just as long as the “un-wrapped” Dazzle Dry situation I’ve got going on, so long as I use the Dazzle Dry Top Coat over the RMS polish.
So, bottom Bottom Line, at least get the Dazzle Dry Top Coat!
Please let me know about your experience with Dazzle Dry. I’m curious to know if you feel it’s worth the price, and if it last on your nails, too.
Thank you for reading my blog, as always.
~The Pampered Wife