So I went to Ulta the other day and the very first thing I saw was a new display of polish. I thought they were Butter London polishes, just based off the shape, but when I got closer, there was a big sign that said “Whim” and that’s it. There was a range of polishes that went from neutrals to brights to darks and it looked pretty, so I picked one up and went on browsing.
I’d never heard of the brand before, and there was abosutely no explanation as to what these polishes were and there was really nobody in the store either, so I just went home and decided to Google.
Now honestly, there’s really not much online either. There’s not even a website for the brand, so I’m assuming they’re either an Ulta affiliate or the like because the first thing that pops up is the Ulta website. Their website provides really no literature either.
So from the very little amount of information I could find, Whim. Nail Polish is another gel manicure alternative for those of you that want the look of a gel, with the affordablility and accessiblity of a regular polish.
Here’s what Ulta’s little blurb says:
ULTA Exclusive!Whim is a high shine, gel-like nail lacquer line whose unique patented 3 step system goes on like a polish but wears like a gel for long lasting color and superior shine. Free of DBP, toluene, formaldehyde, camphor and formaldehyde resin.
The Starter (base coat) fuses the lacquer with the nail using a mesh-like coating that acts like a color magnet.
The Paint (lacquer) multi-patented formula creates a long-lasting, durable high lacquer
The Finisher (top coat) multi-faceted top coat creates a self-cured, high shine gel-like manicure.
Whim paint colors range from the most loved creams to unique textures and the latest glitters in 58 shades. These, along with the essential top and base coat make up the 60 bottle collection.Benefits:
- Wears like a gel, removes like a polish
- No UV/LED light needed
- Salon professional-grade brush for precise application
- Durable formula in high fashion colors
- Removes with regular nail polish remover
Now, I really wish they had something written on their display or a person explaining the polishes at the store because it really would’ve been nice to know lol. Even when I checked out, the girl said little to nothing at all to me, aside from “oh the lipstick you’re buying is so pretty,” so I’m getting the impression that even the Ulta staff no very little about these products. Or they just need to work on their customer service. Either way, this isn’t a review on the store, but the polishes.
Had I seen that explanation earlier, I definitely would’ve purchased the base and top coats to fully test out this system the way it should’ve been used. However, I did use my current favorites, the Orly Bonder and Seche Vite, so I’ll still be able to tell you how they perform as a regular nail polish.
The polishes all come in glass, squre bottles, with a slightly rubberized cap. The bottles actually have a slight curve to them, which I guess helps them stand out, but doesn’t curve so much that storage will be an issue. The caps are at first comfortable to hold. However, in practice, I think I prefer a longer cylindrical style instead. The cap just felt awkard to manipulate in my hand. The brush helped with application though; it’s thicker and slightly shorter so it holds product well and spreads it out well.
The color I purchased was called Midnight Wink. It’s a cerulean blue jelly with a bunch of irridescent glitter mixed in. The combo makes the polish look really blue sometimes, and really teal sometimes. It’s totally a color that’s right up my ally so I knew I’d get good use out of the product.
Formula wise, it’s on the thicker side, at least for this finish and texture of the polish. I haven’t tried any of their creme finish polishes so I don’t know how those apply. Sometimes jellies can be on the thick side so I wasn’t really surprised. The first coat applied pretty sheer, but there was good glitter distribution. The second coat didn’t provide full opacity, and it did start to drag the previous layer so that’s where I started to have some issues. The polish also started getting pretty sticky in the neck of the bottle so I felt like it was on the harder side to work with. At three coats, it definitely was a thick layer of polish on my nail, and took quite a bit of patience to get a good finish and even finish without a lot of patchiness. I did get to full opacity, it just wasn’t as easy as it could have been.
Seche vite applied fine on top though, it didn’t drag the polish so that was a good sign. The polish, on it’s own, had a fair bit of shine, so Seche Vite didn’t add a ton of benefits, aside from sealing in the manicure.
Now, I’ve had this on for about 14 hours, and it’s already chipped. I think it’s because it’s on the thicker side, and it’s a glitter, and polishes like that are prone to small chips on the corners of nails. I can also still press into my fingernail and get small dents though so it means the polish didn’t ocmpletely dry down even with the Seche Vite on top. On the two nails that I have chips, it should also be noted that I used those nails to open a compact this morning when I was doing my makeup. It’s not the first time that’s happened.
As of right now, I think the color is beautiful, even though I’m sure there are dupes you can find through either indie brands or some drugstore brands. I also want to try one of the creme polishes, and their base and top coat just to fully test how these would work as a system. However, they’re not doing so great paired with a regular base and top coat, so it’s a little hard to be excited for these polishes. At $10 a bottle, to not be able to use them with other base and top coats means I have to exclusively buy the Whim. system, and it means there’s a limit to how versatile and cost-worthy they are.
I’ll let you all know what happens with the base and top coat though, when I get around to picking them up 🙂
You can find these polishes at Ulta, and Ulta online, for $10 a bottle. Also let it be known that it’s $10 a bottle for 0.32 fl. oz. An OPI nail polish at Ulta is 0.5 fl oz, and $9.50, just for a price comparison.
I did end up getting Midnight Wink at Ulta when I went for like… $1.50 off? I have no idea why though. It was just on my receipt that I got it for less than the regular price. And Ulta always has coupons so it’s really easy to be able to figure out how to get these for less than $10.
Have you guys tried these? I’m curious to know what you think 😀