16 Drugstore Nail Polishes Worth Skipping the Salon For

There’s nothing quite like a fresh manicure to make you feel like a human being again (ok maybe a fresh haircut and color, too). After dealing with screaming kids, a demanding boss, intrusive relatives, or all of the above, the ritual of choosing a color, tending to your tired hands, and adorning your nails with a smooth coat of polish just feels like the epitome of self care.

That said, sitting down for a professional salon mani isn’t always a feasible option, which is why drugstores are stocked full of nail polish options for at-home application. Sure, you can splurge on a high-end brand, but there are tons of wallet-friendly laquers that get the job done just as well, at a fraction of the cost. 

Because feeling put-together shouldn’t put you over budget, we’ve rounded up the 15 best drugstore nail polishes to shop now. Whether you’re looking for a modern matte finish, a high-shine metallic, or something that dries before the kids wake up from nap time, the perfect pick is right at your fingertips–scroll on and see! 

Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure

Salon in a bottle? Yes, please and thank you. This one-stop-shop polish includes a base coat, nail strengthener, top coat, high-shine finish, chip resistance, and color (of course), to name a few.

$16 AT AMAZON

essie Gel Couture 2-Step Longwear Nail Polish

According to reviews, this streak-free, bubble-free, at-home gel offers salon-quality shine and lasts up to two weeks. Oh, and it dries like really fast. *Adds to cart.*

$11 AT AMAZON

butter LONDON Patent Shine 10X Nail Lacquer

Looking for a high-gloss lacquer that dries ASAP and lasts up to 10 days? This is the best drugstore nail polish for you. Oh, and only one coat required! 

$18 AT AMAZON

NYX Professional Makeup Matte Nail Polish

More of a matte kind of mama? Nyx’s formula goes on smooth and quickly dries to a fashion-forward matte finish.

$9 AT AMAZON

Red Carpet Manicure Color Dip Powder

For those of us who don’t count traditional polish application among our strengths (raises hand), this easy-on dip nail powder offers a long-wear solution thats basically foolproof. Hallelujah!

$10 AT ULTA

Revlon ColorStay Gel Envy Longwear Nail Enamel

This 2-in-1 polish includes base and color in one bottle, and offers a gel-like finish. With literally thousands of positive reviews online, you can be sure this longwear enamel gets the job done.

$7 AT AMAZON

Pacifica 7 Free Nail Polish

Pacifica’s long-lasting  polishes are all vegan, cruelty-free, and free of parabens, formaldehyde, resin, toluene, xylene, and camphor. Even the custom wide brush is 100% vegan, so you can polish your digits without compromising your values!

$18 AT AMAZON

Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Nail Color

Sally Hansen’s Insta-Dri formula has MVP status when it comes to quick-drying drugstore nail polish. One coat of this delivers a chip-resistant mani–with base coat and topcoat included–that dries almost instantaneously.

$4 AT TARGET

Orly Nail Lacquer, Luxe

Orly’s streak-free, fast-drying formula gives you sparkling gilded nails that are perfect for holiday time or any special occasion. With over 47,000 online reviews and a 4.6 rating, this foil polish is a drugstore best bet.

$8 AT AMAZON

Sinful Colors Professional Nail Polish Enamel

Not one for in-your-face color? For a subtle pearlescent sheen, try this drugstore nail polish on its own or layer it on top of a matte or cream polish.

$10 AT AMAZON

ILNP MEGA - 100% PURE Ultra Holographic Nail Polish

This high-quality holographic polish goes on fully opaque with no need for a base coat. The result: Long-lasting Euphoria-inspired sparkle.

$10 AT AMAZON

ZOYA Nail Polish

Zoya is known for being the drugstore option without the chemicals typically found in nail polish, like resin and formaldehyde, making it a favorite choice of pregnant women and the health conscious. 

$10 AT AMAZON

CND Vinylux Weekly Nail Polish

Is there anything more annoying than a mani that chips right away? Where typical nail polish deteriorates as time goes on, the ProLight technology in this CND polish means its resistance to chips only increases with exposure to natural light. 

$11 AT AMAZON

Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Nail Coat

A cult favorite of professional nail artists everywhere, Seche Vite’s gel topcoat is quick-drying and glossy, and will keep your mani looking salon-fresh for days. 

$6 AT AMAZON

OPI Natural Nail Base Coat

Use this drugstore base coat to extend the life of your polish, protect your nails from staining and discoloration, and help polish stick to nails longer. Extending your time between manicures: What more could you ask for?

$11 AT AMAZON

Pear Nova It's Summer Somewhere

Rich in pigment, creamy, and long-lasting, Pear Nova’s nail polishes are all vegan and cruelty free. The collection includes a range of unique shades from muted nudes to summery brights, so you can take your pick of luxury-level lacquers and gels at drugstore prices.

$12 AT COIL BEAUTY

Which drugstore nail polish are you picking up? To fill the rest of your beauty needs on the cheap, check out Scary Mommy’s Beauty Must-Haves.

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