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Orly Breathable Treatment + Color nail varnishes

Breathable nail varnishes are certainly not a new thing, I believe they may have been around since 2012/13, if not before that, but they don't appear to have become particularly popular. The constant wearing of nail varnish is not particularly good for your nails and ideally nails should be left bare regularly to allow them to recover. Nail varnish usually forms a barrier over the nail that prevents air getting to it and causes nails to become dry. There are plenty of strengthening treatments around, but ideally you should reapply daily to really see the benefits and so this means you can't really wear a colour over the top. 

There are also religious implications for breathable nail varnish. Before Muslim prayer women are required to wash their hands and arms and traditional nail varnish prevents water from making contact with the nail, meaning the nails are unwashed. A breathable nail varnish means water can reach the nail and therefore is suitable to be worn during prayer. 

Although I don't wear nail varnish all the time (it doesn't last long enough on me so I'd be painting every few days) my nails aren't in amazing condition. They tend to be quite dry and split/flaky and I suffer with 'fault lines' down a few of them. But I only really tend to remember to regularly apply strengthener when they get really bad. So when I received an email about the Orly Breathable Treatment + Color* nail varnishes I thought I'd give them a try. 

Orly Breathable Treatment + Color nail varnishes
Orly Breathable Treatment + Color nail varnishes

The Orly Breathable Treatment + Color nail varnishes contain vitamin C, pro-vitamin B5 and argan oil and are inspired by the technology of contact lens, allowing air to pass through the colour and penetrate the nail promoting growth, increasing thickness and helping damaged nails to heal by keeping them hydrated. The formula also apparently includes adhesion promoters and shine additives meaning you don't need a base coat or topcoat. This is pretty handy because using a base coat or topcoat or both would obviously ruin the whole breathable bit. Not having to use a base coat and topcoat also means you can paint your nails in half the time it would usually take.

I think the only experience I've had of Orly in the past has been their mini bottles, so I was surprised by the size of these ones when I pulled them out of the envelope. The bottles are large and contain 18ml each, which I think is quite a lot when it comes to nail varnish. The nail varnish is a pretty good consistency, not too thick or too thin, and they come with a wide flat brush that can cover some of my nails in one swipe. I would say two coats is enough for the purple shade and three best for the red shimmer as with other shimmer shades this is thinner than just a colour on its own. 

Orly Breathable Treatment + Color nail varnishes

Please excuse that I put my finger in one of my swatches!

One of the things I was most concerned about was staining on the nails because of not using a base coat between the nail and the colour. With other nail varnishes I've suffered from staining despite using a base coat, but I was surprised to find that I didn't suffer with any staining at all, all colour removed easily. The shimmer was a little harder to remove as is standard, but all colour came away from the nail. I also thought the finish wouldn't be particularly glossy, and if I'm not going for a matte nail and I want all the shine, but again I was surprised by how glossy the finish was, better than some top coats. Finally I thought as there was no base coat or top coat involved that this would be chipping off my nails almost instantly, as no nail varnish lasts particularly long on me. However, again I was surprised to find that this actually lasted longer on my nails than most nail varnishes used with a base and top coat. 

Overall I've been really impressed by these nail varnishes. The downside is that they are £12 each, but my favourites do tend to be around £11-£15 and if I found a shade that I liked enough or was unusual enough I would definitely consider purchasing it. You can find the Orly Breathable Treatment + Color range at Graftons Beauty

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