I haven’t bought anything from the Nina Ultra Pro nail varnish line before, I’d seen them in Sally’s a couple of times but tended to stick to the brands I knew. However, the last time I went this was the only company that had the kind of colour I was looking for so I decided to give them a go and bought Orchid, a sort of darker version if the melenial pink that’s everywhere at the moment.
I can’t find this exact nail varnish on their website, maybe it was a limited edition or it’s just out of stock at the moment, but the rest of their standard nail varnish line is £4.88 a bottle online which is a pretty good price for a nice nail varnish that actually lasts so I thought I’d see if it could do as well as some of my current favourites.
The bottle itself is pretty standard, there isn’t an iconic shape like with OPI but the handle for the brush is comfortable to hold and it’s easy to control when you use it. The brush is a wife, flat design and it’s actually wide enough to almost do most of my nails in one swipe, which is unusual even for this style of design. Unfortunately it does have a couple of loose bristles which is annoying as they do poke out a bit and have for nail varnish on my skin by mistake. It’s nothing too bad and a pair of scissors fixed it but it’s a slight annoyance when you have to cut the brush to get it the right shape as it always ends up a messier job than I expected! Though that may just be me.
The colour for this one is an odd one to describe. In the bottle there’s a definite pearly looking finish but it’s somewhere between a pearly finish and a creme as it’s so subtle and maybe slightly silvering in certain lights. It isn’t as dark as I thought in the store and definitely has more of a pink tone than I was expecting, which feels odd to say about a pink nail varnish but I hope you know what I mean. I thought it would be more salmony or have a redder hint to it than it does. However it does dry down slightly redder and somehow seems to become a more muted, maybe redder, pink the longer I wear it.
The formula for this is so good, if the rest of their nail varnishes are like it I might have a new brand to look at. It was fairly opaque with one coat, two it definitely was but I needed a third as my nails have grooves in them that I’d rather smooth out. It applies really evenly and seemed to even itself over the nail to give a nice flat finish. It dried well, very quickly for the first two coats but a bit longer for the third. It did seem to stay at the stage where you can do things but it might get grooves in if you scratch it for a while.
I tried it without a base coat or top coat to see how it does in its own and four days in there’s tip wear but only minor chipping in two fingers on my right hand and my left thumb but, given how some chip within a day even with a top coat, this definitely impressed me. One thing to know is that topping up to cover the tips and any chips isn’t the best idea. Maybe it’s the heat and humidity, it’s been 25 degrees and pretty humid, but it stayed very soft for a long time and ended up getting scratches in it when I tried to do a bit of a top up of the colour.
Overall I am definitely impressed with this nail varnish and will be looking at others in the line. I think it might even have beaten Nails Inc out of one of my top spots for nail varnishes if the rest are this consistent. Also as a brand Nina Ultra Pro are cruelty free so don’t test on animals and some places seem to say they’re vegan friendly, I’d check the ingredients list if that’s something you’re worried about though as I can’t find anything that officially says this.
This may not be the colour I originally wanted to get, I’m still in the lookout for that, but having worn it for a bit I’m really liking the look for summer. It manages to work well and somehow makes me look more tanned than I am, which is a nice change for a nail varnish.