Worth The Purch? Sally Hansen 3D Gel Shine Top Coat

Polishes that are “gel – like” without the need of a UV lamp seem to be all the rage in the nail polish world lately. But, unfortunately,  I have yet to find a polish that is actually comparable to or better than an actual gel manicure. Sally Hansen has already stuck their foot in this pool of possibilities with their Miracle Gel polish, and now the have recently released a top coat that is supposed to add  gel-like shine and volume to any nail polish you choose (naturally they recommend their own brand). But for $14 USD at Walgreens, is it worth the purch?*


Product Claims

  • get the look of a professional gel manicure
  • dramatically fuller, voluminous, plumped nails with an ultra-glossy 3-Dimensional finish
  • quick-drying top coat
  • no UV light required

Sally Hansen claims that this top coat will give you the shine and volume of a gel manicure, all in a quick drying formula that doesn’t require a UV light. Oddly enough, this is the only “gel” polish that doesn’t make any claims that the product will last as long as the average gel manicure will. So it’ll be interesting to see how long it lasts.


Day 1 & First Impressions –

I went ahead and used this top coat on the last nail art I did, because while I had already swatched Love Fest from Wet n Wild’s 2016 Spring line I figured, why not kill 3 birds with 1 stone?

The 3D Gel Shine top coat definitely does give the polish that “gel-mani” shine, and it went on without any smearing, bubbles or uneven patches. Surprisingly, it even did dry in a matter of minutes! However, I did not notice any sort of “volumizing” or “plumping” effect to my nails like the website and even the packaging claimed it was supposed to. I’m also pretty sure I’d notice a difference because my nails are quite thin – read: are prone to breaking way too easily. But, the volumizing aspect wasn’t what caught my eye or held my interest in the product, so it’s no big deal. Besides, I prefer not to have the “fake nail” look on my nails.


Day 3

As expected, my left hand made it to Day 3 without many problems, only minor chip damage on my index finger. My right hand showed the same results, with slightly more chipping on the index and even some on my middle finger. At Day 3 the shine was still true as ever, which was nice.


Day 5

By the time Day 5 rolled around, my left hand had not seemed to change much, if at all. My right hand however…well it didn’t fare quite as well. Now I’ll admit that some of the damage done on my middle finger was by my own doing, the true indication of how my nails were holding up by Day 5 is on my index finger, which, honestly is pretty well. The shine was still 100% there as well, a huge plus.

I’d also like to point out that the polish that I used to create the white on the french tip design above was a kind of cheap brand, and for some reason I always have a problem with the white one cracking on me (not pretty on french tips). So, to see if the Sally Hansen Gel Shine Top Coat would hold up any better with say, a normal single coat of polish, I went ahead and put on Lay Out In Lavender by Wet n Wild Megalast.


This is how we were looking again by Day 5 on the right hand. And as hard as I tried not to, I am still guilty at peeling a little bit of the polish off of my middle finger as it chipped during the week (I’ve gone from nail biting to nail polish peeling as a nervous/stressed habit…yay). So again the truth lies on the index finger. And honestly? It held up pretty darn well against my day-to-day harassment.

Conclusion: TBG Rating – 5 out of 5 Stars


Ok, so I probably should dock it a little bit since I didn’t see any “volumizing” effects like the box claimed. But on the flip side, it also didn’t advertise that it would hold up as well as it did. So I figure the latter is more important than the former.

The Sally Hansen Gel Shine Top Coat is probably going to be my go-to top coat from now on…or at least until I find a better one. I feel like $14 is a little steep, but considering the quick dry time, lasting gel-polish-like shine, and the great chip resistance, I would definitely say that it’s worth the purch. (I can only imagine how well it’d hold up on someone who wasn’t so hard on their hands as me!)

What do you guys think? Do you have a “gel” top coat that you love? Let me know in the comments below!

till next post, Katie

*I am not being compensated in any way for this post. All thoughts and opinions made in this post are my own & 100% honest. I am not affiliated with any of the companies or organizations mentioned above. This product was purchased by me.*


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