China Glaze Study

China Glaze is a very popular nail lacquer brand that is known worldwide for it's beautiful colors.  With hundreds of colors to choose from China Glaze has a shade for everyone.  China Glaze is manufactured and distributed by American International Industries ( who is also responsible for Seche Vite and numerous other nail, skin, and hair care products.  China Glaze has been around for more than 13 years and prides themselves on being a leader in the nail care industry (

Price Range: $3 - $12
Average Price: $7 - $8  
(Based on my observations, I would deem this a moderately priced polish)

My Initial Impressions
Many of the polishes I've purchased in the past, I've typically purchased because they caught my eye and the price tag didn't make me feel guilty.  This may explain why I've never purchased a China Glaze polish before very recently.  Though their color seclection is eye catching I have never had a strong desire to purchase their lacquers.  Here is how they rated on my initial impressions:

First Impressions
Packaging Boring
Uniqueness I liked that the CG logo was on the top of the applicator handle
Storing Simple bottle shape, and fair size makes it easy to store
Labeling Clear, even the small print is easy to read.


The Application
As always, I started with a base coat to protect my nails and then applied the China Glaze polish.  In this study I ended up using #1155 Passion for Petals.  I did not pick this color for any paticular reason, I guess it just stricked my fancy at the time.  I applied this to all my nails remembering to cap the tips.  This prolongs the polish from chipping along the edge or tip of your nail and gives it a fighting chance to survive.  I was pleased how smoothly the lacquer went on.  I did not find it to be too thick or two thin and if I had applied it a bit thicker I could have gotten away with one coat.  However, I do not like to apply polish too heavily because this will increase the drying time.  So, instead I ended up applying this in two coats.

First application with two coats, before dry.
I was extremely disappointed with the time in which it took for this polish to dry.  In fact, after four hours this polish was still extremely tacky and pliable and looked terrible.  I ended up removing the initial application because it looked so terrible once it actually dried that I knew I wouldn't be able to live with it for an entire week.  I also reapplied it because I knew the ridges and marks would not allow the polish to last as long making it easier to scatch, chip, peal off, etc.  The second time I applied this polish I used drying drops in an attempt to speed up the drying process.  Though this did dry the polish quickly it caused the polish to bubble very badly.

Frustrated and on the verge of giving up, my stubborn self decided to give this one more try.  Well as the saying goes, the third times the charm.  I reapplied this polish yet again and to speed up the drying time I used a cool hair dryer and once it was tacky I used a can of compressed air.  I would not recommend using compressed air for a couple reasons 1) if the polish is too thick and/or pliable you may leave creases or marks in the finish, 2) it is not very economical.  In this case I was desperate, so I was willing to try almost anything.  After about an hour of sitting, blow drying, and using the compressed air I had a finish that was pretty good.  All in all, China Glaze failed my drying test.

Note: For those of you who are asking why in the world didn't she just use a quick drying top coat?please see the page "Battle of the Brands" here I have outlined the criteria and methods of this study.

Though, China Glaze failed to earn any points for their drying time they scored well on the remaining categories of the application portion of this test:

Applicator Handle Easy to hold and maneuver
Applicator Brush Firm but flexible and very smooth
Polish Thickness Just right
Number of coats Would have been fine with one thick coat.
Drying Time Way, way, way too long
Finish Similarity Exact


Day to Day
I applied this initially on Sunday, however, because of the poor results and multiple applications the application was until Monday afternoon.  So, I tested this polish from Monday to Monday to give it a full week.  This polish really got a workout this week because of the crazy weather and trying to finish some house preperations for my daughters birthday next weekend.  Even though some of the tasks I performed in addition to my typical chores may seem unusual, believe it or not, they are pretty typical for me.  However, I tried to be generous in my day to day scoring because of the crazier stuff that I do.

In the first 24 hours this polish really took a beating.  We had snow (again!) so I spent a fair portion of my evening cleaning and salting the driveway.  I did not wear gloves while I was salting so the finish was badly scratched from that.  I also inadvertently closed my thumb in a baby gate which cased a pock mark.

 End of Day 1
Day 2 included more shoveling and lots of household chores. This is when the chipping began.

End of Day 2 (Sorry I only took picturesof my fingers.)
Day 3 was a pretty easy day, but I did spend sometime painting some trim in my house. I would have typically removed a polish by now because of the state of it.

End of Day 3
Day 4 I decided to degrease my cabinets.

End of Day 4
Day 5 I finished painting the trim I started working on previously.

End of Day 5
Day 6 I didn't do anything other than typical chores.

End of Day 6
Day 7 was another relaxed day for me.

End of Day 7
This is how I rated the daily wear of this polish.  Keep in mind I based this on day to day.  In other words each day had a potential to earn 10 points if it did not wear any further than the previous day.
Daily Scores
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5
Day 6
Day 7
China Glaze earned a total of 69 out of 100 points on my test Earning it a C+.  I was a little disappointed with this polishes durability.  I guess I had high expectations because it is so popular.  However, I feel that the price range of the polish is on pare with its quality and how it wore throughout the week.

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