Zoya Nail Polish in Amy was a surprising hit. I only bought it because it bears my first name. It’s a glittery bright pumpkin orange that I would never purchase otherwise. On my nails, it is completely captivating. The glitter is just enough to catch your eyes without being tacky or childish. The orange complements my light-medium skintone perfectly and does not make my skin look too dark in comparison. Zoya’s Amy ends up looking very metallic and chic, while still bright and cheerful. This is a perfect color for autumn.

I applied 2 coats for an extra layer of protection for my nail beds, but this formula is opaque and smooth enough that one coat would suffice. The polish is easily removed too. It’s also free of many major toxins, and less than $10 at Ulta. Welcome to a permanent spot among my favorites, Amy.

I also tried Zoya’s Faye recently for a pedicure. The duochrome shade is very unique, seemingly changing through a metallic purple to gold depending on the lighting. Most of the time, and from a distance, it looks like a shimmerly brown color. It think it’s a fine color on toes but a little too much of an “autumn” color to be flattering on my hand’s bright winter coloring.

A surprising ‘miss’ for me was Deborah Lipmann’s La Vie en Rose. The formula was very sheer and I don’t recall its chip resistance or ease of removal to be better than others either. The color itself in the bottle and after 3 or 4 coats is lovely though.

I’ve compiled a nail polish wishlist to help guide my purchase decisions later on. The products on my radar are: 

  • Deborah Lipmann’s Hard Rock Top Coat and Basecoat looks like it has a great ingredient list. Toxin-free and has interesting extracts for additional conditioning. A quick review at the Skip Deep database shows that its ingredients don’t exceed a warning level of 2 for irritation, which is good compared to other companies’ polishes.
  • Jin Soon’s Power Basecoat looks good as well as it also doesn’t contain significant red flag toxins.
  • Smith and Cult Nail Polish in Bitter Buddhist (a unique celadon green), Pillow Pie (a sweet pink), and Shattered Souls (a gold glitter coat that looks like it has a better glitter distribution than like polishes).
  • Speaking of Smith and Cult, their Above it All top coat and Basis of Everything base coat treatments have simple formulas without extra good stuff but also with harmful toxins.
  • Zoya’s Quick Dry Drops may be a nice alternative to Butter London. Instead of the rose hip seed found in butter london’s oil, Zoya’s uses camillia oil, which is also nice and hydrating. 
  • Zoya Nail Polish in Dot (A light but opaque neutral baby pink), Ember (an orange red),  Sansa (metallic purple black) and Yuna (gray with gold shimmer).