Best-Rated Nail Polish

Canstar Blue’s nail polish review has compared Revlon, OPI, Maybelline and Sally Hansen on their ease of application, drying time, longevity, variety of colours, packaging design, value for money and overall satisfaction.

See our Ratings Methodology.

Best nail polish 2022

Most Satisfied Customers | Revlon

Aussies rated Revlon best in Canstar Blue’s nail polish review, scoring the brand five stars across all categories! These include longevity and durability, ease of application, drying speed, colour variety, packaging design, value for money and overall satisfaction.

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Revlon nails it in nail polish ratings

Flashy bling is one thing, but nicely manicured nails? Now you’re talking! From standard nail polish to gel, SNS and shellac, there are so many ways to express yourself by just adding a pop of colour to the tips of your fingers. Our survey found that two in five (43%) respondents have tried multiple brands of nail polish, before finding a product that nailed their expectations. So, which nail polish brands are worth a try and which are not?

To find out, we surveyed nearly 500 Australian consumers for their feedback on the nail polish products they’ve purchased and used at home in the last six months. Respondents rated brands on their ease of application, drying speed, longevity and durability, colour variety, packaging design, value for money and overall satisfaction. Brands that met the minimum required survey sample size of 30 responses are included in our results.

Revlon was rated ‘hands down’ the best nail polish in our latest ratings, finishing with the only five-star review for overall satisfaction! It also achieved full marks everywhere else!

Best Nail Polish

Revlon nail polish

Here are the best nail polish brands in Australia, as rated by consumers in Canstar Blue’s latest review:

  1. Revlon
  2. OPI
  3. Maybelline
  4. Sally Hansen

Revlon is the number one pick in our latest ratings, after rating best for overall satisfaction, in addition to scoring five-star reviews across the rest of the board. However, the remaining brands still achieved a respectable four stars for overall satisfaction.

Former winner OPI continued to impress consumers after earning five stars for durability. It got the same result for packaging design, alongside Sally Hansen, which also picked up an additional five-star review for ease of application and drying speed.

About the Winner ─ Revlon

Revlon nail polish review

Global beauty brand Revlon has got everything for your nail needs, including a colourful variety of nail enamels and polishes. The brand also offers buffers, cuticle nippers, nail scissors, groomers, nail files and nail clippers as well as top and base coats.

Revlon has a few collections to choose from, such as Ultra HD Snap, Colorstay Gel Envy and Revlon’s classic Nail Enamel range. Prices start from just under $12 and go up to $16.

  • Revlon brushed up best after maintaining a five-star review in all research areas, including longevity and durability, ease of application, drying speed, variety of colours, packaging design, value for money and overall satisfaction.

What is the difference between regular nail polish and gel nail polish?

The main difference between regular nail varnish and gel polish is that gel nail polish can only dry under a UV or LED lamp, while normal nail polish can air dry naturally with oxygen. Gel nail polish needs direct UV or LED light to cure, allowing the coat to harden and make it more durable and last longer.

But this means it can be more difficult to remove gel nails compared to normal polish. Removing gel polish may require soaking the nails in acetone, while nail varnish can often be removed using a nail polish remover and wipes.

Should you do your nails at home?

Our survey found that 38% of Aussies prefer to do their nails at home rather than visiting a nail salon, and 17% have turned to DIY manicures due to COVID-19 restrictions. A small number of our survey respondents also paint other people’s nails, including friends and family (16%). Although it doesn’t always go smoothly, with almost a quarter (23%) admitting they have been disappointed by their nail polish purchases in the past. This is perhaps the reason 26% of people stick to what they love and have tried different finishes or colours from the same brand.

Getting down to the nitty-gritty ─ Aussies spend an average of $16 per month on nail polish. One in three (31%) use a topcoat and/or a base coat, and a handful of respondents say they need to re-do their manicure once their nails start to chip (17%).

About the author of this page

This report was written by Canstar Blue’s home & lifestyle journalist, Tahnee-Jae Lopez-Vito. She’s an expert on household appliances, grooming products and all things grocery and shopping. In addition to translating our expert research into consumer-friendly ratings reports, Tahnee spends her time helping consumers make better-informed purchase decisions on all manner of consumer goods and services, while highlighting the best deals and anything you need to be aware of.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Canstar Blue surveyed more than 3,000 Australian adults across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have purchased and used nail polish at home (i.e. not from a salon) in the last six months ─ in this case, 485 people.

Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then by mean overall satisfaction. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.

Below are the previous winners of Canstar Blue’s nail polish review:

  • 2021: OPI
  • 2020: Sally Hansen