How to make your Essie Mirror Metallics look perfect (seriously)

Essie’s Mirror Metallics collection has been a huge hit. Applying polishes from the Mirror Metallics collection has not.

I did a post on Essie No Place Like Chrome back in July and had nothing but good things to say about the color and formula, but application was a total headache. My nails aren’t particularly problematic but in my swatches minor imperfections became obvious flaws.

I’ve been wearing this polish all Summer and have tried various things to try and make application easier. Things I have tried include buffing the nails before application, using 2 coats of base coat, using a ridge filler and various combinations of all of the above. These things helped but still didn’t give me the perfect look I was striving for.

Finally after using a matte top coat for my Kate Beckinsale inspired nails I got the idea to try No Pace Like Chrome over a matte top coat. The difference is amazing! The matte top coat smoothed out the nail and the metallic polish looked as close to perfect as I could ever hope to achieve.

The exact layers I used in my swatches go as follows: a base coat (I used Julep), one coat of No Place Like Chrome, one coat of butter LONDON matte finish shine free top coat (but any matte top coat will work),  one coat of No Place Like Chrome and then, of course, a top coat. Yes, that’s alot of steps but the finished result is completely worth it.

Just in case you don’t believe me, there are more swatches below the jump (including a macro shot!). I hope y’all give this a try! If you do, let me know how it works 🙂


  1. Amazed…It does help hold down the brush strokes – not totally but really a huge improvement. Most of these are goners off displays now. But I was in Walgreens 60 miles from me to pick up prescriptions this week and they had a full display except for the Copper Penny one that only had 1 bottle left – seems that was the most popular of all of em…and I bought the blue – which is the worst of all of ’em for too frost and ton of brush strokes…had picked it up only ’cause I thought it might be in the power blue range that I could pull off as I cannot wear any powder blues at all – but this Essie one had the silver to it…did not turn my hands lob red like all powder blues do but could not get past the brush strokes. TY so much! Going to give this a try.

  2. Oh and trying to recall – someone in a blog showed a layering with these Essies that toned down the frost – pretty sure it was using a like shade cream layering…I need to try that too.

    1. I once saw someone lightly sponge another layer of polish to reduce the brush strokes (it was a metallic frosty polish) and it worked like magic! I don’t know if it would work on these though. It would certainly take away the mirrory quality, but also the brush strokes. Might be worth the try…?

  3. Great! I’ve read that the same trick is very helpful with those pastel shades that take over three coats and you’re still not satisfied with the coverage… Regards!

  4. Thank you SO much for sharing this secret! Essie Penny Talk would look fabulous with my NYE dress, but I’ve had problems getting the Mirror Metallics to look just right. But I tried a practice mani with a matte basecoat per your suggestion, and BOOM SHAKALAKA! A beyond flawless finish! Thanks, Alli!

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