Bionic Review: New Sally Hansen Complete Salon polishes

by Bionic Beauty on 16.May.2010 · 10 comments

There’s a new addition to the nail polish racks at your local drugstore! Sally Hansen has taken their popular “Salon” formula and made it even better. The new polish line is called “Complete SALON Manicure”. The bottles are a bit larger and they come with a flat “artist” brush. The line’s catchy marketing states that you won’t need a base or top coat with these polishes; hence the “complete manicure” naming.

Of course being the nail polish nut that I am, I had to grab a few bottles especially when I saw they had a gorgeous gray! I adore gray nail polish… and I really don’t care if it goes out of trend.

Here are my thoughts and swatches of the two Sally Hansen Complete SALON Manicure polishes I nabbed at Walgreens…

Sally Hansen Complete SALON Manicure nail polish in Gray by Gray

Sally Hansen Complete SALON Manicure nail polish in Gray by Gray

Sally Hansen "Gray by Gray" nail polish with gloss & matte top coats.

Gray by Gray is dark gray cream with blue tones. It’s pretty much United States Air Force gray. I love the color with either gloss or matte top coats. This is my new favorite nail color, by far.

Sally Hansen Complete SALON Manicure nail polish in Commander in Chic

Sally Hansen Complete SALON Manicure nail polish in Commander in Chic

Sally Hansen "Commander in Chic" nail polish with gloss & matte top coats.

You’re gonna love this color if you are a fan of the khaki, taupe, mushroomy color family. A few years back it all started with OPI’s You Don’t Know Jacques… which I own, but have to admit that I don’t want to know Jacques. That color is raved about by many, but it doesn’t work with my skin tone. At All. Commander in Chic however does work for me! CiC is another fabulous candidate for both matte and gloss top coats.

What I loved:

  • Full coverage in just one coat! This is the closest nail polish formula I’ve found to the cult-favorite Rescue Beauty Lounge (which runs $18 a bottle). RBL is very pigmented and applies like a dream; and these Complete Salon polishes are just as nice! I couldn’t believe I only needed one coat. I kept holding my nails under bright lights to look for streaks… nope, not a one!
  • Affordable pricing! Compared to RBL’s $18 a bottle, Complete Salon is very budget-friendly at only $6.99!
  • The wear was incredible! Again, I can only compare these to RBL as nothing else comes close. RBL spoiled me by getting 3 full days without chipping, peeling or flaking; thankfully now I can save my hard-earned cash and get the same long wear for much cheaper.
  • Quick drying – Not only are they quick to dry but due to the gloss finish, you can paint your nails in a jiffy and be out the door without worrying about layers upon layers of polish getting dinged or smudged.

Potential drawbacks:

  • In my opinion, you should still use a base and top coat with these polishes. Without a proper base coat you risk difficulty in removing the polish and stained nails (some colors, such as blues, are notorious for staining).
  • It’s a new line, so there isn’t a full range of colors yet. Plus they seem to be selling out as quick as my local stores get them in stock.
  • The brush may take some getting used to since it’s so flat. But once you adjust, it gives great coverage with no clumping or drag.
  • The Jelly Bean factor. You can’t have just one. Due to the nice price, long wear and ease of application, it will be hard for me to resist picking up a new bottle with each drugstore run!

Bonus swatch! Completely due to my penchant for gray, I also picked up Sally Hansen’s Xtreme Wear nail polish in Wet Cement.


Sally Hansen's "Wet Cement" shown in gloss and matte

Wet Cement is a neutral light gray cream with absolutely zero shimmer. This polish is pretty affordable (around $4.99 when not on sale) and very accessible in most drugstores. The Xtreme Wear polishes don’t last very long for me, but with a good base and top coat I usually get two days. With Wet Cement I needed two coats to achieve bottle color, and it looks great with a matte top coat! As with most of my Xtreme Wear colors, the application was a bit heavy/bunchy on the edges, but I can’t complain too much since I love the color.

Have any Bionic Beauties out there tried the new Complete Salon Manicure polishes? Have you spotted them at your local drugstores yet?


1 carol May 16, 2010 at 8:29 am

Has anyone tried the Color Quicks? I have tried 2 different colors, and liked the coverage – then tried the Pink Chrome – and that one seems to not last very long. Goes on easily, but the next day – it needs more color.

2 Bionic Beauty May 17, 2010 at 5:22 pm

Hi Carol, Here’s my review of the Nic’s Sticks, which is a different brand, of course:

I have a few of the Sally Hansen versions as well. They seem to last quite a bit shorter than regular polishes for me. I use them mainly when I need to polish my nails quickly before running out the door. 🙂

3 Matt May 16, 2010 at 4:35 pm

This is an amazingly comprehensive product review and I agree that at $4.99 it seems to be a bargain.

4 Bionic Beauty May 17, 2010 at 5:23 pm

Hi Matt, Thank you for the kind words! And welcome to Bionic Beauty!

5 Tashi May 17, 2010 at 4:48 pm

Ya know, I don’t normally care for grays, taupes, and mauves, and the like, but those samples look faboo. Totally office-appropriate. That is, once I find myself in an office again (sorry to keep dinging that bell — just explaining how I feel ’bout the colors — thinking ahead, too). I think I’d probably try one of the first two shades for interviews and/or once I start the new job. And wow! SO affordable! Forgive me if I’m overlooking it, but, could you tell me, por favor, what stores tend to carry the new Sally Hansen Salon polishes? I’ve seen that brand at Target, CVS, and probably elsewhere. But honestly, I don’t always pay attention to what’s actually *there* for stock. Gracias! 😀

6 Bionic Beauty May 17, 2010 at 5:24 pm

Hi Tashi, I found all mine at Walgreens… but I have seen ads for these new Complete Salon polishes at Rite Aid and CVS as well. They were on sale last week, I think. I’m a walgreens-gal though, so that’s where I’m always shopping. 😉

7 Tashi May 17, 2010 at 5:35 pm

Thanks! I really like Walgreen’s too. I’ll keep an eye out there, as well as at CVS (where they also carry Milani, so I can’t go wrong, huh? lol).

8 Tara Brooke May 20, 2010 at 9:26 pm

Salle Hansen polish are nice! I hope they come in different colors with this line already. The one coating coverage is what I like especially if I need an emergency polish for an event.

9 Jen May 23, 2010 at 9:43 pm

Wow! Great review! I picked up Wet Cement about a week before you did this post 🙂 I love the color and the formula! I was thinking about getting Commander in Chic, but I wasn’t totally sure. Now, I’m going back to Walgreen’s to get that one too!

10 Bionic Beauty May 23, 2010 at 10:02 pm

Hi Jen, Yippee! Another gray nail polish fan! 🙂 I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on Commander in Chic. Gray by Gray is amazing too. Although sometimes it seems hard to find. Stalk those Walgreens though, and I’m sure you’ll find a bottle!

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