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What is Matte Top Coat?

06 Sep 2023
What is Matte Top Coat?

The illustrious matte top coat: it’s the transformation of glossy nail art into something utterly captivating and deeply alluring.

This deep dive into the science behind the magic explores the undeniable perks of this method and sheds light on a few nuances you might encounter when choosing products.

The team at NotPolish is here to explain how to achieve that sought-after velvety finish – let’s go!

Understanding Matte Top Coats

So what is matte top coat?

It’s essentially the ultimate style conductor for your nails. Regular nail polishes have a thing for reflecting light, giving you that glossy radiance.

But enter the matte top coat – the rebel of the nail world. It's formulated to banish that light reflection, delivering a finish that's flat, sophisticated, and avoids that reflective sheen.

Benefits of Matte Top Coats

1. Stylish Versatility

Hold onto your polish brushes – matte top coats are elevating the nail game. The non-reflective coat brings minimalistic and detailed designs to life, can balance and turn antique the fondest colors, and sophisticate wild shades.

Maybe you're going for an edgy monochrome or a soft, muted allure – this is the answer.

2. Camouflage for Imperfections

Whereas glossy finishes have a knack for exposing tiny nail imperfections, these coatings gracefully conceal dents, ridges, and minor unevenness.

3. Durability Boost

The coating keeps your manicure chip-resistant for an extended period. We’re talking less peeling, chipping, and fading, given you’re using a good-quality paint.

Drawbacks of Matte Top Coats

1. Limited Color Range

While matte top coats play well with most colors, they might tone down the vibrancy a tad. Dark shades thrive when using mattes, but lighter hues could lose a bit of their brilliance in the transformation.

Opt for using mattes with strong colors if you’re focused on color rather than textured effects.

2. Potential Uneven Application

Mastering the art of applying a matte top coat requires a dash of finesse. A hasty application might lead to streaks or patches, robbing you of that velvety perfection you're looking for.

Precision is the name of the game. Go easy on each coat, and let dry before adding another.

3. Special Care Needed

Matte nails are vulnerable to dirt and oil build-up. This means they need a bit of extra TLC to stay looking fabulous between touch-ups.

Get ready to invest a smidge more time in maintenance – it's all worth it for the magical finish.

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Use a Matte Top Coat

Here’s how to use a matte top coat yourself, or maybe even create one for a friend:

  • Base coat
  • Nail polish of your choice
  • Matte top coat
  • Nail polish remover
  • Cotton pads or swabs
  • Clear top coat (optional)

1. Prepare Your Nails

Your nail spa journey begins by pampering your nails with some cleansing and shaping. Push those cuticles back gently but firmly, and make sure your canvas is sparkling clean. Nail perfection demands it.

Trim, shape, and perfect those nails. Short-to-medium length nails are the unsung heroes here – they're less prone to chipping, and they're oh-so-chic.

Exfoliate and soak your hands thoroughly. Push back the cuticles, remove dry skin, and moisturize your fingers fully.

2. Apply Base Coat

Get your base game strong. It's like laying the foundation for a masterpiece. Don't forget to apply a touch of Vaseline to keep the polish from clinging to your skin.

3. Apply Nail Polish

Pick your color, choose your design, and do your work as an artist! Just be sure to give your polish time to dry before moving to the next step.

4. Matte Top Coat Magic

Here's where the enchantment happens – the matte top coat. Shake it up and glide on a whisper-thin layer over your dried polish. Be sure to cap your edges, too, for added durability.

Let it work its magic for a few minutes.

5. Assess and Reapply (If You Need to)

Inspect your nails closely after the first application. If you spot any imperfections or unevenness, a second layer might be in order. Again, make sure they’re dry before you do.

You should now have a stunning, understated finish that highlights your gorgeous nails!

Caring for Matte Top-Coated Nails

Before you get started, there are some things to be aware of to ensure you get the maximum benefits from this process. Here’s where you should pay special attention to your new nails.

1. Avoid Excessive Water Exposure

While a relaxing bath or a dip in the pool might be tempting, excessive water exposure can weaken the finish and lead to chipping. Consider wearing gloves while doing dishes or prolonged water-based activities.

2. Use Gentle Cleansers

When it's time for a hand wash, opt for gentle, non-abrasive cleansers. Harsh chemicals can strip away the finish and lead to a loss of texture and color vibrancy.

3. Moisturize Regularly

Maintaining the health of your nails is essential. Regularly moisturize your hands and cuticles to prevent dryness, which can affect the overall appearance of your nails.

4. Be Mindful of Sunscreen

If you're applying sunscreen to your hands, be cautious not to get it on your nails. Some sunscreens can alter the texture of the finish, so apply sunscreen with care.

5. Avoid Scratching Hard Surfaces

These top coats can be slightly more delicate than their glossy counterparts. Avoid using your nails to scratch surfaces or open objects, as this can lead to premature chipping.

6. Reapply Top Coat (If Needed)

Over time, the matte effect might wear off due to natural oils and wear. If you notice a decrease in the appearance, consider applying a thin layer of matte top coat to refresh the finish.

7. Keep Cuticle Oil Handy

Applying cuticle oil not only nurtures your cuticles but also adds a subtle shine to your nails. Opt for a non-greasy cuticle oil to maintain that chic balance between moisturized and matte.

8. Store Nail Products Properly

Ensure your nail products are stored in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. Extreme temperatures can impact the consistency and performance of both your nail polish and top coat.

9. Perform Regular Touch-Ups

Even with the best care, your nails might need a touch-up after a week or so. Keeping a small kit with your matte top coat, nail polish color, and tools handy can help you maintain that flawless look.

Frequently Asked Questions about Matte Top Coats

Can I use matte top coat with any nail polish brand?

Yes, matte top coats are generally compatible with various nail polish brands. However, results may vary slightly based on the formulation of the nail polish.

How long does matte top coat last?

The coating can last anywhere from a few days to a week or more, depending on factors such as your activities, nail care routine, and the quality of the products used.

Will applying a clear top coat over the matte affect its longevity?

While adding a clear top coat over a matte finish can provide extra protection and shine, it might slightly alter the longevity of the matte effect. The clear top coat could reintroduce some light reflection and impact the matte appearance over time.

If you're seeking the longest-lasting matte finish, consider skipping the clear top coat or using it sparingly. Experimentation will help you strike the right balance between durability and the desired velvety texture.

Can I use a regular top coat to make my nails matte?

No, using a regular top coat won't give you the desired effect. Matte top coats are specifically formulated to alter the reflective properties of the polish, creating a true matte finish.

Wrapping Up

Matte top coats are the unsung heroes of the nail world. They're your passport to elevating your nail game, creating depth, and adding an edgy twist to your style. From minimalist vibes to rocking neutral tones, matte top coats are your secret weapon for effortlessly cool nail art.

So, if you’re searching for that matte magnificence, dive into the world of high-quality matte top coats and nail goodies waiting for you at the NotPolish store.

Plus, check out our full matte products line!

Embrace the velvety allure – you've got the power to rock the matte chic like a true trendsetter!

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