First Impression: Revlon Gel Envy Nail Color 2 Step System


My nails chip super easily; that’s just a reality that I have come to accept. Even Seche Vite didn’t really work for me, which is a modern tragedy in and of itself, so I have been wanting to try one of the various no-light gel kits that many brands are offering now. Revlon was on sale at Walgreen’s this week, so I picked up one of the Revlon Gel Envy colors, as well as the Gel Envy Diamond top coat. The polishes and top coats are usually $5 each, but they were on sale for “buy one get one 50% off”, so I got the color Checkmate, which is a beautiful neutral beige and the top coat for about $8 with tax.


The color polish is supposed to be a base coat and color in one, so I did not apply a base coat before starting. It applies smoothly, and dries down quickly to a semi-matte finish. I used two coats to reach the opacity I desired, and it did not get goopy or hard to work with as I added the second coat, which sometimes I find I have problems with. I let the color dry down for a few minutes and then applied one thick layer of the top coat, which added a lot of shine to the nail. It did take a while to fully dry, and clumsy me nicked my pinky nail and left a couple small scrapes on it, but honestly I didn’t care enough to re-do it.

Day Two Shot of the Nails. Ignore the bumpiness; my nails are super damaged from overuse of press-ons and I’m growing them out.

As for wear, I saw a few teeny tiny chips on day two, which weren’t even noticeable honestly. I also experienced some shrinkage and peeling at the very tip of the nail, but I fixed this by going over it with another layer of the top coat. I think that this may be due to operator error, as this may be the type of polish that needs to be carefully applied to the very tip of the nail and slightly on the underside to prevent shrinkage and cracking. I started to see more significant wear and chipping on day 3, but it still wasn’t large chips, and some nails did not have any chipping or wear at all, even until I took the polish off on day 5. Weirdly, it cracked horizontally near the tip of my nail, but the polish did not flake off, which I thought was impressive. I decided to remove it on day 5 to put on a different color, but if I hadn’t wanted a change of color, I would have just let it be, as it still looked pretty decent.

Again, the ridges of my nail show up really badly, but you can see the slight chipping on the edges, as well as the cracking.

For $5 per bottle (and even cheaper if you can catch them on sale at Ulta, Walgreen’s, or CVS like I did!), I was impressed with the longevity and quality of the polish. One downside is that the polishes do need a top coat, since it’s a 2 step system, so it isn’t great for a super quick mani pedi, but that isn’t something that really bothers me, as I try to use a top coat every time I paint my nails anyway (because, like I said, they chip like a mofo). All in all, this is a great product, affordable, and the range of almost 40 colors is an amazing selection for a new, drugstore collection! I’ll definitely be picking up a few more colors from the line… or maybe all of them.

What’s your all time favorite long wearing nail polish or top coat? I’d love to try them out.


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