Tuesday, 21 October 2014

What's In A Primer Anyway?

Living in Barbados and dealing with the heat and humidity is a struggle. It seems like it's getting hotter every year. If you're one of those people that wear to work makeup everyday more props to yuh.

With Crop Over recently ending, a lot of us were out and about partying up a storm. For us makeup enthusiasts that also meant employing all the tricks of the trade to ensure that those special beats last. We gotta be picture perfect for the paparazzi all event long. During that time one set of questions the Moden team received repeatedly was about setting sprays. The other big query was about primers.

Here I've already raved about two primers, Hourglass Veil Mineral and Becca Ever-Matte Poreless Priming Perfector. We've also told you numerous times that we use Phillips Milk of Magnesia as an oil controlling method. But what about all those primers that we see in Collins, Cave Shepherd and the supermarket? Well lewwe see now...

The idea for this post was sparked a while ago, when I first saw NYX Pore Filler and Shine Killer in Exotica Makeup and Extensions. When I checked the packaging for the ingredients I discovered there were basically the same. 

Pore Filler ingredients: Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Silica, Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Isononyl Isononanoate, Isododecane, Polymethyl Methacrylate, VP/Hexadecene Copolymer, Trimethylsiloxysilicate, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol. MAY CONTAIN / PEUT CONTENIR (+/-): Mica, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, 77492, 77499).

Shine Killer ingredients: Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Isododecane, Isononyl Isononanoate, Trimethylsiloxysilicate, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol.
Earlier this year NYX launched their Angel Veil - Skin Perfecting Primer. I've seen people on YouTube say that this is a cost effective alternative to the Hourglass one. Here are those ingredients: Cyclopentasiloxane, Isododecane , Polysilicone-1, Cyclohexasiloxane,Glyceryl Stearate, Nylon-12, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Palmitic Acid, Stearic Acid, Laureth-12, Alumina, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Phenoxyethanol, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891).

What seemed like eons later Maybelline launched their Baby Skin. This entered the market as the cheapest "pore eraser".

posted on our Facebook page July 4, 2014

Ingredients: Dimethicone, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Stearyl Heptanoate, Caprylyl Glycol, Silica Silylate, Propylene Glycol, Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate, Prunus Cerasus Extract / Bitter Cherry Extract. May Contain: CI 73360 / Red 30, CI 77492 / Iron Oxides.

Parent company L'Oreal had already put out their counterpart under the Revitalift line:

posted on our Facebook page April 3, 2014

Ingredients: Dimethicone, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Silica, Isododecane, F.I.L #D162192/2.

They also released a "light infusing" primer in the Magic Lumi family:

posted on our Facebook page September 5, 2014

Ingredients: Aqua/Water/Eau, Cyclopentasiloxane, Glycerin, Isododecane, Alcohol Denat., Bis-PEG--14/14 Dimethicone, PEG-10 Dimethicone, Ethylhexyl Hydrostearate, Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate, Phenoxyethanol, Magnesium Sulfate, Diphenyl Dimethicone, Caprylyl Glycol, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Acrylates Copolymer, Methylparaben, Nylon-12. May Contain/Peut Contenir: CI 77163/Bismuth Oxychloride.

The Body Shop has a Pore Minimiser in their Tea Tree line which claims to "instantly mattify".

posted on our Facebook page March 5, 2014

Ingredients: Aqua/Water/Eau (Solvent/Diluent), Glycerin (Humectant), Alcohol Denat. (Solvent/Diluent), Silica (Absorbent), Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride (Emollient), Isododecane (Solvent), Talc (Absorbent/Bulking Agent), Pentylene Glycol (Solvent), Sodium Polyacrylate (Film Former/Viscosity Increasing Agent), Glyceryl Stearate (Emulsifier), PEG-100 Stearate (Surfactant), Dimethicone/Bis-Isobutyl PPG-20 Crosspolymer (Skin-Conditioning Agent), Bertholletia Excelsa Seed Oil (Emollient), Caprylyl Glycol (Skin Conditioning Agent), Glyceryl Stearate Citrate (Skin-Conditioning Agent), Phenoxyethanol (Preservative), Melaleuca Alternifolia Leaf Oil/Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Oil (Natural Additive), Calophyllum Inophyllum Seed Oil (Skin Conditioning Agent), Xanthan Gum (Viscosity Modifier), Epilobium Fleischeri Extract (Skin-Conditioning Agent), Disodium EDTA (Chelating Agent), Limonene (Fragrance Ingredient), Potassium Sorbate (Preservative), Citric Acid (pH Adjuster), Citral (Fragrance Ingredient), Leptospermum Petersonii Oil (Fragrance Ingredient), Tocopherol (Antioxidant).

To round it all off they're the Rimmel London primers that you can find locally in Collins and iMarts.

us.rimmellondon.com image

Ingredients: Aqua/Water/Eau; Cyclopentasiloxane; Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate; Propylene Glycol; Phenyl Trimethicone; Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate; Dimethicone; Polyethylene; Talc; Dimethicone PEG-10/15 Crosspolymer; Magnesium Sulfate; Vinyl Dimethicone/Methicone Silsesquioxane Crosspolymer; Methyl Methacrylate Crosspolymer; Phenoxyethanol; Lauryl PEG-9 Polydimethylsiloxyethyl Dimethicone; Lecithin; Parfum/Fragrance; Silica Dimethyl Silylate; Methylparaben; Gossypium Herbaceum (Cotton) Powder; Tocopheryl Acetate; Butylparaben; Ethylparaben; Isobutylparaben; Propylparaben; Silica; Dipropylene Glycol; Tocopherol; Triethoxycaprylylsilane; BHT; Hexyl Cinnamal; Limonene; Butylphenyl Methylpropional; Benzyl Salicylate; Linalool; Geraniol; Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone; Citronellol; [May Contain/Peut Contenir +/-: Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), Mica (CI 77019), Chromium Oxide Greens (CI 77288), Ultramarines (CI 77007)]

ulta.com image 

Ingredients: Aqua (Water) , Cyclopentasiloxane , Propylene Glycol , Talc , Dimethicone , Phenyl Trimethicone , Dimethicone Crosspolymer , Vinyl Dimethicone , Methicone Silsesquioxane Crosspolymer , Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate , PEG 10 Dimethicone , PEG 10/15 crosspolymer , Magnesium Sulfate , Phenoxyethanol , Caprylyl Glycol , Fragrance , Tocopheryl Acetate , Lauryl PEG-9 Polydimethylsiloxyethyl Dimethicone , Lecithin , Punica Granatum Fruit Juice , Vitis Vinifera Juice (Grape) , Ethylhexyl Palmitate , Glycerin , Retinyl Palmitate , Sorbic Acid , Butylphenyl Methylpropional , Dipropylene Glycol , Ascorbyl Glucoside , Hexyl Cinnamal , Hydroxyisohexyl 3-Cyclohexene Carboxaldehyde , Tocopherol , Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone , Silica , Dimethyl Silylate , BHT , Butylene Glycol , Sapphire Powder , Palmaria Palmate Extract , Sodium Hyaluronate , Hexylene Glycol.

Rimmel London vs. Maybelline

You can decipher which products are very close to which. 

The reason I thought to highlight these ingredients is because these products vary in price. The Maybelline Baby Skin is the cheapest at $13.45BDS and the Miracle Blur the most ridiculous at $53.60BDS (Collins prices). I recently got both of these products so look out for separate reviews :)

Some things to note:

Silica is an emollients and is used to soften and moisturize the skin. "Perhaps the most common forms of silicone are cyclopentasiloxane and cyclohexasiloxane. Other forms include various types of dimethicone and phenyl trimethicone" (excerpt from Paula's Choice.com).
Glycerin and Propylene Glycol are humectants and draw water into the outer layer of skin.

In my experience with silicone based primers, firstly the Smashbox Photo Finish then the NYX Shine Killer, you have to use a very light layer. These primers are great for giving the skin a smooth surface for foundation application but too much turns into a hot mess quickly; especially on oily skin. Special attention should also be taken to match the bases of your primer and foundation, i.e. water-to water and silicone-to-silicone. I found that the Smashbox primer clogged my pores, while the one from The Body Shop one did absolutely nothing. More cosmetic companies - example NYX and Cover FX - are getting smart and adding salicylic acid to their primers. More things for us to buy!

Phewwwww. That was a lot to digest. Moral of the story: if all you're after is a skin smoother go for the cheapest one because the ingredients in these things hardly vary. If you're looking for oil control I truly believe that it's a combination of primer, foundation, setting powder and setting spray (all in as light layers as possible) that will assist the longevity of your look. If you're pressing me for a product recommendation I'd still go with the Hourglass. But most of all, be careful with how often you use any primer (that isn't straight up skincare) because they can cause clogged pores and acne/pimples.

If I left anything out please feel free to ask in the comments. 

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Would I Repurchase? REN Clarimatte T-Zone Control Cleansing Gel

Regular readers already know that I'm a big fan of REN Clean Skincare. Well it all started with this travel kit for combination skin.

I probably bought that kit three times before I decided to purchase the full size of the cleanser. The other two products lasted much longer as you would imagine.

Now that we know that cleansers shouldn't foam the hunt is really on for effective skincare that contain good ingredients. REN prides itself on that very thing.

A lot and I do mean A LOT of popular cleansers can not boast of the same claims. Even the ones that have "natural" or "gentle" in their titles. Prepare for picture overload of some examples.

All photos taken in Woolworth

See any brands that you recognise?

The Clarimatte, formerly know as the Mayblossom Balancing Cleanser, retails for $68BDS LP from Pure Source Barbados. The full size is 5.1 fl. oz.

I hope from that second picture you can see its gel-like consistency. I love the air pump dispenser because it ensures that you use every drop. And at the price you'd surely want to. The Pure Source staff say you should just use one pump to cleanse your face but I don't know who actually does that. I probably use three on a wash cloth and two with my Clarisonic Mia 2. You skin certainly feels clean after use without that tight feeling that we now know it our skin's was of saying, "yuh dry muh out!"

Everyone I have recommended this product to loves it. Men and women. The price tag is heify especially compared to what you can pick in in the pharmacy or supermarket; but I guess you're paying for those good ingredients.

From the Pure Source Barbados site: "...this is a sulfate-free, balancing, anti-bacterial cleansing gel for skin that is prone to oiliness and breakouts, particularly in the T Zone. It will gently dissolve disolve dirt and excess sebum and remove impurities allowing skin to breathe freely and helping to reduce pore size, leaving the skin balanced but not stripped.

Key Bio-Actives include:
Flavonoids - from Mayblossom, decongest the skin
Salicilin - from Willow Bark provides mild exfoliation and antimicrobial properties to purify problem skin, reduce pores size and minimise spot formation
Guaiazulen -from Blue Cypress essential oil, calms redness and soothes minor irritations

*Nothing reduces your pore size*

My sole issue with this product presented itself literally by accident. I stored mine on a bathroom caddy which goes over the toilet bowl. One fateful day a brand new bottle did a full somersault with a twist straight into the bowl...

Money burn. Silver lining: at least now we know the packaging is reusable. 

While I don't think this is my Holy Grail cleanser, I do feel like I will always have one of these on hand. The 0.85 fl. oz. that comes in the travel kit is perfect for just that. 

Ingredients: Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Flower Water, Cetearyl Ethylhexanoate, Glycerin, Lauryl Laurate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Tapioca Starch, Cetearyl Glucoside, Oryzanol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Salix Nigra (Willow) Bark Extract, Amorphophallus Konjac Root Powder, Crataegus Oxyacantha Stem Extract, Carbomer, Phenoxyethanol, Vaccinium Macrocarpon (Cranberry) Seed Oil, Laminaria Ochroleuca Extract, Cassia Alata Leaf Extract, Pueraria Lobata (Kudzu) Symbiozome Extract, Bisabolol, Sodium Hydroxymethylglycinate, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Callitris Intratropica Wood Oil, Limonene, Linalool, Glucose, Tocopherol.

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Product Rave: Becca Ever-Matte Poreless Priming Perfector

I got this back in June and didn't remember to use it till the morning that I was getting ready for UV. That day was a scorcher! Upon initial application I instantly saw the product go to work. My skin was matte and pores on my cheeks seemed to vanish.

From the site: "Targeted oil-control primer that perfects and minimizes pores for mattified skin that lasts up to 12 hours. The concentrated Ever-Matte Poreless Priming Perfector goes beyond extending makeup wear to address the root cause of why your makeup moves. This formula specifically targets oil-prone areas and acts as liquid blotting paper to leave your skin fresh and matte all day.

Use alone, before or after foundation to control excess oil while minimizing the appearance of pores. Can be used throughout the day to touch up areas of concern.
EverMat™ eliminates excess oil for long-lasting matte skin. This formula is sweat and humidity resistant
Ideal primer for oily skin or targeted oily areas.
Free of: Silicone, Oil, Alcohol and Fragrance.

Directions: Primer can be worn alone or under foundation. To apply, warm a pea-sized amount in hands and pat onto specific areas of concern like the T-zone. Allow product to dry before following with makeup application. For touch-ups throughout the day, warm primer in hands and pat over makeup to target oily areas.

Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Propylene Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Butylene Glycol, Enantia Chlorantha Bark Extract, Oleanolic Acid.

Key ingredients: EverMat™ eliminates excess oil for long-lasting matte skin

Blended in; it dries completely transparent

I think I was trying to show the matte finish here (center of my hand versus the rest) in natural lighting. 

I remember sweating at UV like nobody's business. The Summer heat in Barbados this year was CRUEL...and it's still continuing. I sweat a lot from my scalp so when I noticed the sweat rolling down my face I said, dis primer like it ain't saying nuttin yuh. Till I noticed in the pictures afterwards that my makeup was still on. The only thing I was blotting away was the setting powder I had used.


All outfits by The Tri Collection

Since that day I've used the product in all the ways suggested. If you're going to use it as a touch up product during the day, I suggest blotting away the excess oil first then applying. The nozzle dispenser on this product makes soooooooo much sense because you need very little. I apply it exactly as directed because rubbing it onto your face would cause the product to pile (roll up). The entire packaging is a win; the tubes soft malleable nature allows you to easily get the product out. 

The Priming Perfector shouldn't be applied to your entire face, just those problem areas. I know in this humidity it's very tempting to go crazy with mattifiers but trust me, not with this. Once I tried Milk of Magnesia all over my face and then this in the T Zone...WINNING! You really do need very little product to get the job done so the 40 ml should last a while. That's comforting since this costs $36USD.

My sole complaint about this primer is that prolonged use causes blocked pores which cause pimples. Funny enough, I'm hearing more and more that you shouldn't use primers - mostly silicone based - every day. The Priming Perfector states that it's free of silicone so I thought I was all clear. Yet, when three little guys popped up above my eyebrow as I was doing research for the Foundation Series this is all I could attribute it to :(

The primer doesn't contain all those great skin care ingredients like the Hourglass Veil Mineral one but it does absolute wonders to prolong the wear time of more "dewy" foundations. I am going to keep this in my arsenal for those big days.

This item can be sourced via our sister company  T.E.A.M Imports if you'd like to try it. Just holla!

If you have any other queries feel free to leave them in the comments below.

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Would I Repurchase? L'Oreal Voluminous Butterfly

As seen in Collins
posted on our Facebook page April 3, 2014 

As seen in Cave Shepherd
posted on our Facebook page July 4, 2014

This item was another one we were eagerly awaiting in Barbados. L'Oreal calls the 'wing tip brush' featured in this mascara "a breakthrough". From the US site: "Description - Stretch and extend your lashes like wings! Introducing Voluminous Butterfly Mascara, one of our most-exciting mascara innovations, yet. Its revolutionary Butterfly Brush™ with asymmetrical lash line shape extends and lifts outer corner lashes to give you a winged-out effect, instantly volumizing lashes at the roots and stretching lashes outward. The unique Cocoon Fibers™ instantly wrap lashes in a soft, delicate veil to create silky, spectacular lashes that flutter". The shades there available are 'Black', 'Black Brown', 'Blackest Black' and 'Midnight Black'.

The UK site calls this mascara False Lash Flutter and offers the shades: 'Black', 'Midnight Black - Extra Black', 'Midnight Black - Blue' and 'Midnight Black - Purple'. I only mention these differences because it would appear that Cave Shepherd is carrying the UK/International branded stock - although I'm not sure if they have all the colours.

I purchased mine from Collins for $18.15BDS Cave Shepherd is retailing it for $37BDS LP. O_o

In standard L'Oreal mascara fashion this is a wet formula so as I always say, do your lower lashes first. What's great about the other side of the wand (the 'wing'-less side) is that the rubber bristles are short enough to make coating those lower lashes easy. The formula layers well on itself - while still wet - but it is not easy to build volume. Which is funny since their promising "6x the volume". The packaging also states that the "formula is infused with 1.2 mm fibres". I don't see them on the wand but that could just be my poor eyesight. As I hope the photos above convey, the bristles are evenly spaced and tapered to the tip. We've come to know from L'Oreal's 'precision comb' wand that this gives great separation and definition to the lashes.

The 'wing tip' brush does assist in elongating the corner lashes thereby creating a cat eye effect, Honestly you can do this with a range of mascaras once the tip is tapered to a good enough point but this "breakthrough" shape does make the manoeuvrings a bit easier.

All in all this is a pretty ok mascara. Not one I'd pay $37 for though. I have 'Blackest Black' and I actually find it quite natural looking. Hence, this is like an everyday mascara to me. The winning point of this mascara to me is that you don't need a seperate one for the lower lashes. It comes off easy enough with soap and water, after about two washes; so any eye makeup remover would make it easy peasy.

The Moden Makeup Marketplace - What the ??

Moden Mavenz,

So you bought a foundation and it looked perfect in the store. Of course there were NOOOOO testers, so poor you, no recourse. Did we mention the no return or exchange policy? AND your mother sister cousin brother doesn't want it!

Worry no more, this is a concept that has proven successful in the US and EUROPE. Have you checked out Makeup Alley? Now let me be frank, we do NOT want you to sell a lipstick you've had for the last 5 years, with the excuse that you never opened it, fair is fair.

Head to 3:30 for the review on Makeup Alley.

What we DO want is to encourage you to offload some of your new AND gently used products so that you are not inundated with a mobbaton of ill suited products. Get it?

Cue The Moden Makeup Marketplace.

We know your frustration, we share it. Now there is a place to relieve your buyers' remorse and PURCHASE with the proceeds from your sale a great product that WORKS for you.

OR benefit from a product that just didn't work for someone else!

This forum is for you to swap or sell those NEW OR GENTLY USED Items at a reduced cost.



Group Rules & Guidelines:

Hi everyone.

1. Please be respectful of one another.
2. You must post high quality photos of the item to be sold/ swapped.

Example of how to post the photo, ignore the bedspread - Photo Credit Redditt
Some of the shadows and pigment samples we have for sale! 
Some of the shadows:
M.A.C Typographic, Freshwater and Bronze: $5
M.A.C Naked, Tan and Golden Olive: $7
Sugarpill: Lumi, Darling, Junebug, Stella, Royal Sugar and Magentric: $7
Barry M Dazzle Dust '98': $7
Email: lucinda@modenmakeup.com to place your orders!

3. All products MUST be sanitized prior to delivery.
4. Cash on Delivery is the ONLY METHOD OF PAYMENT.
5. Your swap depends on your preference i.e High End Items may be swapped for low end and vice versa, it is all at your (the users and followers) discretion.
6. All NEW ITEMS MUST be approved by Heidi Aboab or Lucinda Robinson prior to posting.
7. Kindly post the photo and product related information thus:
Item: Makeup Forever HD Foundation
Shade/ Colour: 178
Cost/Original Price: $
Reason for Sale/Swap: Shade does not suit me.
8. All posts must indicate state of item, i.e
9. Products delivery is at the discretion of the seller, we recommend no more than 5-7 business days. Team Moden can facilitate delivery for you at a fee.
10. Please indicate by typing SOLD/ Swapped in the comments when a product has ACTUALLY been sold.

If you want to offer regional/ international shipping, that too is at your discretion. Exercise caution and be wise.

That's it!
Have fun beauty enthusiasts and may the sale/swap begin!!!



Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Overview: CND Vinylux Weekly Polish

This one was a long time in coming...

I saw these at Bio Beauty a while ago and was instantly intrigued. Manicures that stay chip free for seven days?! Sign me up!

As seen in Bio Beauty, Coconut Walk, Hastings

The CND site claims that while regular polish last four days their Vinylux system lasts for seven days chip-free. "Change it when you want to, not because you have to". How catchy.

The reason why this post is so tardy is because this product required a bit of a learning curve. Foolishly, I never checked the website until I was compiling this post. So when I first used the product I did so in my usual fashion: base coat, two coats of polish (hopefully) and the suggested top coat. This brings me to problem number one. These polishes are $25BDS each and the suggested Weekly Top Coat is $26. I already know that Bio Beauty is not for the faint of pocket but geeez if you have to buy a system for something to work I feel there should be a lil ease somewhere.

Right, so, first try was a flop. Funny enough I used CND Sticky Base Coat.

'Overtly Onyx'

This was after two days max. Upon my next visit to Bio Beauty, I explained my plight to the receptionist. She informed me that I had to 'wrap' my nails. Theodora explains how here.

Image from http://redhairandblacknailpolish.blogspot.com/ 

The main reason I wanted a manicure that lasts for a while was for when I travel. As soon as one nail chips I want everything off. So that's something I'd prefer not to have happen when I am 'over and away'. I was discussing these Vinylux polishes with the Manager of Sugar Cane Club Spa, Barbara, and she told me to skip base coat altogether. Now that I've checked out the CND website that's exactly what they recommend. "No base, two step system delivers week-long wear. STEP 1 - Apply two thin coats of Vinylux Weekly Polish. STEP 2 - Finish with one coat of Vinylux Weekly Top Coat".

'Married To The Mauve'

I just love those 'dusty mauve' colours.

I can't find the after photo so just trust me. It lasted much longer - approximately six days - without a base coat but I didn't wrap my nails and there was immediate shrinkage. I didn't even know that was the proper term. I remember explaining it to Barbara like, "the polish pulled away from the nail tip". Smh. Novice.

Something else the Bio Beauty staff neglected to tell me was that the colours - there are 76 shades in all - have different finishes ranging from sheer to opaque. I kindda found this out on my own when I tried 'Tinted Love'. The site said this is an opaque formula but unlike the others previously mentioned it takes at least three coats to look like something. I tried it first on my toes but most polishes last forever on yuh toes anyways.

'Tinted Love' after four days

I don't remember how much the mini was for but it came from the Forbidden Collection. Bio Beauty often breaks up mini sets and sells them individually.

The star product in this system is supposedly the Weekly Top Coat. Unlike CND's other popular product, the Shellac polishes, this top coat doesn't require 'curing' under a UV light. The Weekly Top Coat uses "Pro-Light Technology" which creates increased durability and resistance to chips with exposure to natural light. Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.

L - R: 'Overly Onyx', 'Married To The Mauve', 'Asphalt', Weekly Top Coat and 'Tinted Love'

I tried 'Overly Onyx' again without a base coat and got better results. Still not seven days as promised but it didn't chip as quickly. I'm very nervous about not using a base coat because I always expect the polish to stain my nails. Thankfully, none of these colours did.

'Overtly Onyx' after four days

The disclaimer is that I don't baby my hands. I wash dishes - sometimes wid a lil Clorox -, do usual chores etc. The one thing I did not put these polishes through was hand washing. 

Have you ever tried this Vinylux formula? Should the polishes be so pricey if it's really the top coat that does the work? Share your thoughts in the comments :)