Getting a perfect manicure is never easy because you need a base coat and a top coat, and both of them are as important as the other one. If you fail in one coat (especially the base one), then the other one will fail too. So for those looking for a long-lasting and durable option, the use of the best gel base coat is critical.
Note that The key benefit of a gel base coat is the ability to offer a glass-like shine on natural nails while ensuring that the polish stays in place for days without tearing. The gel top coat is applied over the base coat, providing a richer, more vibrant color and a glossy finish to your nails. This is why using a base and top coat is crucial when working with gel polishes. It protects the natural nail and ensures that the gel polish lasts longer. Below we share with you 5 of the most effective base coat available on the market.
#1. Sally Hansen Salon Pro Gel Base Coat – Best Base Coats
When it comes to the best gel base coat, we suggest that you try out the Sally Hansen Salon Pro Gel Base Coat. The finish is subtly shiny and it holds up beautifully with a pro-grade salon look. Also, it happens to be very affordable, which is always nice to know.
Best Gel Nail Base Coat Reviews in 2023
- #1. Sally Hansen Salon Pro Gel Base Coat – Best Sellers
- #2. Gelixir Nail Gel Base and Top Coat – Best 2-in-1
- #3. Dip Dipping Powder Gel Base Coat – Best Self Curing
- #4. Wonder Brand Gel Base Coat – Best Top And Base Coat
- #5. Lagunamoon Gel Base Coat – Best Shine Finish
- #6. Nails Inc. Nailkale Superfood Base Coat – Best Overall
- #7. Essie First Base – Best Budget
- #8. OPI Gel Top and Base Coat – Best Anti-Yellowing
#1. Sally Hansen Salon Pro Gel Base Coat – Best Sellers
For those who want the best gel base coat, we highly recommend that you try out the Sally Hansen Salon Pro Gel Base Coat. This is one of the more popular products out there and we can see why. First and foremost, the quality is pretty amazing and clearly in a league of its own. We would go as far as to claim that this bottle is pretty much salon-grade.
Keep in mind that this is just a step 1 gel base coat, so you will need other things as well for a full kit. It has a minor shine and little to no chipping, which is always great to know. People like this product and always come back for more because it has amazing value and gives you salon quality at a huge discount.
#2. Gelixir Best Gel Base and Top Coat Duo – Best 2-in-1
Next up, we have the Gelixir Nail Gel Base Coat, which is the best gel base coat and top coat duo for those who want a protein-rich coating that strengthens weak nails. While the packaging and presentation may not be the best looking, don’t judge a book by its cover. It clearly adds measurable thickness to your nails.
The secret ingredient here is obviously keratin, which is a fundamental component of nails and acts as a protective barrier here. Overall, this is an amazing product that gives your nails a huge protective barrier. If you are after durability, this is the way to go.
#3. Dip Dipping Powder Gel Base Coat – Best Self Curing
Another really nice option when it comes to the best gel base coat is the Dip Dipping Powder Gel Base Coat. It is definitely a bit different from the rest of the competition. Many people really like it because it is incredibly easy to use and doesn’t require a UV LED nail dryer to cure it, which can be a tedious and annoying process.
We really like how this gel base coat is infused with calcium and vitamin, which will further protect your nail bed. And it is also nice to know that it is really easy to remove and comes off easily just like you would do with any gel nail polish.
#4. Wonder Brand Gel Base Coat – Best Top And Base Coat
The Wonder Brand Gel Base Coat is yet another product you should look into if you are searching for the best gel base coat. This set comes with a no-wipe top coat and a base coat. The thing that separates this base coat from the rest of the pack is that it has the perfect viscosity, making it really easy to apply without it running all over the place.
Also, it is nice and thick, which gives you plenty of added protection and durability. Just keep in mind that the base coat tends to run a little sticky after curing. Although you have to cure it with a LED light, it is a fast cure time and doesn’t get annoying like some other brands.
#5. Lagunamoon Gel Base Coat – Best Shine Finish (not always available)
Finally, we have the Lagunamoon Gel Base Coat, which is the best gel base coat for those who want something that is super smooth with a mirror shine finish. Most people like this gel base coat because it has a pretty long wear time and leaves your nails protected for longer periods of time with the same amount of coating.
The brand itself Lagunamoon is pretty reliable according to the internet and has plenty of happy customers backing them up and what they do. If you want to try something different from the brands mentioned above, we highly suggest that you try out the Lagunamoon Gel Base Coat.
#6. Nails Inc. Nailkale Superfood Base Coat – Best Overall
For the best overall nail care, try Nails Inc. Nailkale Superfood Base Coat. It is enriched with kale. Kale is a leafy green superfood. But it also contains keratin to strengthen brittle nails. This formula promises to harden, hydrate, and nourish your nail beds, leaving nails brighter and healthier-looking with a brilliantly glossy finish. This base coat acts as an anti-breakage and splitting shield, making it a must-have for anyone who wants to maintain strong, healthy nails.
Not only is Nails Inc. Nailkale Superfood Base Coat effective, but it’s also ethical. It’s vegan, cruelty-free, and 21-free. This means it’s free of 21 harmful chemicals commonly found in nail polish. Additionally, the 100% compostable FSC-certified wooden cap makes it an eco-friendly choice.
This base coat is also enriched with Vitamins A, C, E, F, and H, providing your nails with the nutrients they need to stay strong and healthy. Your nails will look so good that it’s almost a shame this base coat will be covered up with regular lacquer. Try Nails Inc. Nailkale Superfood Base Coat for the best overall nail care.
#7. Essie First Base – Best Budget
Essie Nail Care’s Strong Start Base Coat is the perfect addition to your nail care routine. This clear strengthening nail polish base coat is both 8-free and vegan. This makes it a perfect choice for those who are eco-conscious and health-conscious. The base coat is infused with biotin, a key ingredient in strengthening nails, which reinforces and hardens nails, making them more resistant to peeling, chipping, and breakage.
When applied, the base coat provides a smooth surface for the perfect manicure, giving your nails the foundation they need to shine. The formula is easy to apply and dries quickly, providing a long-lasting result. This base coat can be easily paired with any of the Essie Nail Care polishes for an even more vibrant finish.
For the perfect look, apply one coat of the Essie base coat before applying any of the Essie Nail Care polishes. Try the Essie Nail Care, 8-Free Vegan, Strong Start Base Coat today and experience long-lasting protection and a manicure that truly shines
#8. OPI Gel Top and Base Coat – Best Anti-Yellowing
When it comes to top and base coats for gel polish, OPI Gel Top and Base Coat is among the best anti-yellowing options. This base coat is specifically designed to prevent highly pigmented colors from staining your nail beds, providing an adhesive foundation for your polish, while also protecting your nails against discoloration buildup.
Not only does the OPI Gel Top and Base Coat give a protective layer to your nails, but also ensures that your mani lasts as long as possible. It prevents your nails from looking brittle and dull as it helps protect your nail beds from chipping and peeling.
Plus, it is exceptionally long-lasting, saving you time and money by keeping your nails looking fresh for weeks to come. Make sure to give your nails the best with OPI Gel Top and Base Coat.
Final Verdict on the best top and base coat gel polish
After rigorous testing and research, the base coat that stands out is undoubtedly Naikale from Nails Inc. It ensures quick drying and a high-shine, long-lasting finish that shows no signs of chips or cracks for up to two weeks. However, if you’re on a budget, Essie First Base is a great option as an adhesive base coat that bonds to polish and helps the lacquer last as long as possible. Regardless of your choice, make sure you invest in a high-quality top and base coat for a flawless and professional-looking manicure that will take you from day to night.
What to Look For When Buying The Best Base Coat – Buying Guide
There are four main criteria you need to look into when purchasing a based coat. These are:
- 2-in-1 Formulas
- What You Are Applying Afterward
1. 2-in-1 formulas
If you’re looking for a nail product that can do it all, a 2-in-1 formula base coat is the way to go. As the name suggests, this product combines the functions of both a base coat and top coat into one convenient bottle. This means that you can save time and money by using just one product instead of two.
Note that a base and top coat combo is often formulated with additional benefits such as strengthening the nails, providing a smoother surface for an even application of color, and ensuring a longer-lasting manicure. This makes it the perfect companion for both regular nail polish and the best at-home gel nail polishes. Using just one base coat will help save your time and energy and give your manicure a professional finishing look. So, for those who prefer a one-and-done nail product, be sure to reach for a dual top and base coat to prep your nails and seal them in a colored manicure with ease.
2. What coat are you applying afterward
After applying your base coat, it’s important to consider what coat you’ll be applying on top. This decision can impact the overall look and health of your nails. If you’re planning on using a colored polish, make sure your base coat is compatible with the particular brand or type of polish you’re applying. Additionally, if you’re hoping to keep your nails bare, it’s best to choose a coat set that includes a milky, slightly opaque option. This can help give your nails an even and healthy appearance, as well as provide some protection against potentially brittle nails. Ensure you use a top coat or sealer to help prolong the life of your polish and maintain the health of your nails. Choosing the right coat to use after your base coat is crucial to the overall look and health of your nails.
3. Ingredients of a gel base and top coat
When purchasing a top and base coat set for gel manicures, it’s important to understand the ingredients that make up the gel base and top coat. What you need to look for is the nail-caring ingredients that it contains. For those with weak, brittle, or peeling nails, or for those who frequently use gel polish manicures, ingredients like keratin, vitamin E, soy protein, calcium, bamboo, and castor oil will be essential in providing the necessary nourishment and support to the nails.
These ingredients work to strengthen the nails and promote healthy growth, while also improving the longevity of the manicure. On the other hand, top coats mainly contain ingredients like acrylic, which provides a glossy finish and seals the polish, allowing for a longer-lasting manicure. Both the base coat and top coat must be applied in thin layers to ensure a smooth, bubble-free finish that looks like gel, adding convenience and professional-quality results to your DIY manicure routine.
4. Price of best gel nail top and base coat set
The price of a gel base and top coat can vary depending on the brand and quality. There are budget-friendly options available that can cost around $20, while some high-end brands can charge up to about $100 for their gel base and top coat products. It is important to note that the price does not necessarily reflect the quality of the product, as some budget-friendly brands can provide excellent results. It is essential to look at the ingredients and reviews of the product before making a purchase decision. Additionally, investing in a high-quality gel base and top coat can be beneficial in the long run, as it can provide a longer-lasting manicure. Overall, there are options available at various price points, and it’s essential to find a product that fits within your budget while still providing the desired results.
FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions
What is a gel base coat?
A gel base coat is a high-quality base gel that is used in the application of gel nails. The base coat is a crucial step in the process of achieving perfect base nails. It acts as an adhesive agent that helps the gel bind with your natural nail, ensuring that your gel nails last as long as possible. The gel base coat usually has a sticky texture, which helps in the adhesion of the gel polish to the nail bed. It is applied to the natural nail before the application of the gel color.
In essence, a gel base coat enhances the color of gel polish, makes it stay longer, and also prevents the nails from staining. The base gel forms a protective barrier that shields the nails from the damaging effects of the gel polish and also helps in smoothing out any ridges on the nails. A high-quality base gel is an essential component in the creation of perfect and long-lasting gel nails.
Can you use a base coat with dip powder?
When it comes to using dip powder on your nails, there is a debate among nail artists about whether or not to use a base coat. While some believe that using a base coat can help the powder adhere better, others argue that a specific bonding agent should be used instead. These bonding agents have been designed to work specifically with dip powder and provide a secure grip for the powder to stick to the nail surface.
It is important to note that these bonding agents are often different from regular base coats, which are typically used for gel manicures. Using the wrong product can result in the dip powder not adhering properly, causing the manicure to chip or peel. So, while it may be tempting to try and cut corners by using a traditional base coat, it is best to follow the advice of professionals and use a bonding agent specifically designed for use with dip powder.
Why use a base coat with regular polish?
Using a base coat is an essential step in any DIY or professional normal polish manicure. A base coat smooths the nail surface by filling in ridges and creating a flat surface for the polish to adhere to. It also provides nourishment and hydration to the nail bed, ensuring that the polish will not strip off or damage the nails. A base coat protects the nail from staining, especially if you’re using darker shades of polish. It also acts as a primer, creating a bond between the nail and the polish, which prolongs the life of the manicure.
A top coat is also important to help polish dry faster, protect against chips, and add shine. However, without a base coat, the top coat will not adhere properly and the manicure won’t last as long. While the popularity of gel nail polish kits is on the rise, there are still many great options for at-home normal polish manicures, as long as you’re including a quality base and top coat.
Do you need a base coat for gel polish?
If you want to achieve the best gel manicure possible, using a nail base coat is a must. Many of the best gel nail polishes on the market today require a specific gel base coat to be used in conjunction with them. This is because if you apply a separate base coat to your bare nail, you risk your gel peeling or not adhering properly.
Note that, nail base coats have been specially formulated to work with gel polishes, so they provide the necessary bonding agents that help the polish stick to the nail. Not only that but using the best gel top coat makes your manicure last longer and look better overall. Before applying your gel polish, be sure to invest in one of the many high-quality nail products available that are designed specifically for use as a base coat. Doing so will ensure that your gel manicure looks its best and lasts as long as possible.
Can you use a base coat as a top coat?
The question of whether you can use a base coat as a top coat largely depends on the type of base coat you are using. While some base coats are designed solely to prime and nourish the nail, others are formulated to both prep the nail and keep the color sealed in with a long-wearing, high-gloss finish. If you’re looking for a two-in-one coat set, then using a base coat as a top coat might work well for you.
However, if your base coat is not designed to serve as a top coat, it may not provide adequate nail protection or glossiness when used as such. It’s important to keep in mind that maintaining nail health and growth is crucial too. So, if you’re trying to incorporate a lesser amount of polish, consider letting your nails breathe for a few days to promote healthy nail growth before applying any coats. Ultimately, the decision to use a base coat as a top coat depends on the formula of the product and your desired outcomes.
Is the gel base coat supposed to be sticky?
The gel polish base coat is designed to have a slightly sticky consistency in order to properly adhere to your nail bed during application. This tackiness also helps subsequent layers of gel polish to bond together, resulting in a long-lasting nail. Note that it is important to ensure proper nail prep before applying the base coat gel and allowing each coat to properly cure. Once all coats have been applied, you need to wipe away the tacky residue with a cleanser to reveal a flawless finish. So, if you find that your gel base coat feels sticky to the touch, don’t worry, this is actually a good thing that works to ensure a flawless and long-lasting manicure.
Is a gel nail base coat necessary?
Using a nail gel base coat is highly recommended for optimal results when it comes to gel manicures. This coat helps the manicure last longer and stay intact. Applying one thin base coat every time gel nail polish is used will ensure that the gel polish stays on your nails better, preventing it from peeling off prematurely. It acts as a bonding agent between the nail bed and the gel polish, creating a strong foundation for the rest of the manicure.
A base coat also helps protect the natural nails from staining caused by pigmented nail polish. With a proper base coat application, your gel manicure can last up to three weeks without any chipping or cracking. In conclusion, a nail gel base coat is necessary as it not only promotes the longevity of the manicure but also enhances the bond between the natural nail and the gel polish, making it an essential part of the gel manicure process.
When to apply gel base coat?
You should apply a gel base coat as a first step in any gel polish or polygel manicure. After preparing your nails, it’s important to apply the base coat thinly and evenly, just like you would with gel polish. Be sure to apply at least three strokes to ensure complete coverage, and don’t forget to permanently seal the free edge to prevent chipping. After application, cure the base coat for at least 30 seconds under the UV or LED lamp. Timing is crucial, as this will help the base coat adhere to the nail and create a smooth surface for the color polish to follow. Applying the base coat correctly will also promote healthy nails and prolong the life of the manicure. Overall, the base coat should always be the first step in your gel polish or polygel manicure routine.
What can I use instead of gel base coat?
If you do not have a gel base coat for your nails, there are several alternatives you can use. One common substitute for a gel base coat is clear nail polish. Clear nail polish can function as a protective layer just like a base coat and prevent polish from chipping or peeling off easily.
You can also consider using a strengthening or calcium-infused clear nail polish to help the nail become stronger and healthier. Another option is using a regular base coat, which can also work as an alternative to a gel base coat. Additionally, you can skip using a base coat altogether and simply use a top coat over the colored polish to help keep the polish in place and prevent chipping. Whatever the substitution may be, it’s important to ensure the nail is clean and dry prior to application to allow the product to properly adhere to the nail surface.
Can a gel base coat be used as nail glue?
Yes, a gel base coat can be used as nail glue and it has a stronghold. Gel base coat is a versatile product that can be used for different purposes, and using it as nail glue is one of them. It has a thick consistency that helps bond nails effectively and provides a durable finish. If you don’t have nail glue on hand, or if you prefer using a natural-based alternative to traditional nail glue, then the gel base coat could be an excellent option.
To use it as nail glue, apply a thin layer of gel base coat on your natural nail bed and press the artificial nail into place. Hold it for a few seconds until the bond holds. You can also use gel base coat to reattach any artificial nails that have come loose. However, it’s essential to note that using a gel base coat as a nail glue replacement may not work as well as actual nail glue, and it may not work for all types of nail art applications.