Holo Taco Review

I really want to take more care of my nails.

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Since I stopped climbing (although I’m planning to go back, just not as regularly) I’ve had no excuse for poor nails. I’ve been using gel for years as I have a Sensationail Lamp and a Le Mini Macaron* lamp. Despite trying many times, I’ve never really got on well with regular nail polish. It chips almost instantly on my nails and I frequently smudge it before it can dry.

I’ve been watching Simply Nailogical for a little while and was interested when she brought out a line of nail colours. The prices seemed reasonable, but International shipping was expensive, so I waited it out to see what reviews were like. By the time it got to Black Friday I’d decided to take the plunge and finally make a purchase while it was on sale.

It’s taken a little while (you’ll read why below) but I’ve finally used them all so can give my opinions on all six bottles!

Base: Long Lasting Base & Smoothing Base

These are fantastic. I’ve really enjoyed using these.

The long lasting base absolutely stinks though. It has the most chemically smell I’ve ever had the misfortune to sniff in a beauty product. Try to use this in a well ventilated area if you can. However, it applies well, dries quickly and I definitely saw an improvement in how long my nail colour lasted when using it. At $11 this is really reasonable for a base coat and would be what I’d expect to spend on such a quality product.

The smoothing base coat has a slight nude colour when on the nails and that’s why I purchased it. I wanted something I could wear on my nails when I didn’t necessarily want a colour. It doesn’t smooth out all of my nail, but there is a definite improvement without feeling like there’s a thick coat of something on my nail. Again at $11, this is good value. This is also has less of an odour than the long lasting base. Worn underneath the Linear Holo Taco top coat, you get a really nice subtle sparkly nail.

Colour: One Coat Black and Rainbow Snow

I love black nails and the idea of simply putting one coat on my nails sounded too good to be true. However, lots of reviews confirmed it.

Rainbow Snow is a jelly nail colour with lots of holo inside. It’s like Christmas in a bottle. It’s smelly, but not as pungent as the long lasting base. I used this on top of the base and topped it off with the Glossy Taco top coat. This is the longest a nail colour has ever lasted on my nails. I think in the end I got a week before it chipped? Even then, because of all the glitter in this, I could touch it up and you’d never know. The colours are just $13. Again, really great value. Unfortunately, where this colour went wrong for me was removal. Christine did warn about this in her You Tube video about these glitter colours however I wasn’t prepared for how difficult this would be to remove.

The glitter just seemed to really cling onto my nails and once I finally got it off they were left looking pretty rough. They were thin and breakable for several weeks afterwards. I therefore had to wait quite a while before my nails got to a strength and decent enough length to try the One Coat Black.

At this point I haven’t mentioned the brush as it hadn’t really mattered too much up until now. But the brush in all the bottles is tiny. It’s really thin and difficult to use. It’s not too much of an issue with the base coats or even the glitter Rainbow Snow, but with the black it was awful. I’m not amazing at painting my nails but I’m good enough. However, this brush makes me look like I’ve never painted a nail before. Coupled with the One Coat Black being so thick it started drying before I could finish a nail this was a completely unusable product. I’m assuming it was faulty? To Holo Taco’s credit, when I tweeted about this issue they almost immediately issued me a refund for it.

Top coat: Linear Holo Taco and Glossy Taco

Thankfully, the top coats probably smell the least out of everything I purchased.

I’ve already mentioned the Linear Holo Taco but this is a $13 top coat to add a bit of sparkle to your nails. When I first used this I was a bit underwhelmed. Compared to the shots online, this was way more subtle in real life. You basically only get the full effect if you start moving it under a light source. Despite that, I do like this. If anything, I’ll probably get more use out of it now I know it’s subtle.

The Glossy Taco is just a super glossy top coat and I really like it. It does exactly what it says. Again, it’s only $11. The thing I love the most about this (and all the things I purchased, excluding the black) was how quickly these dried. I was able to do a base coat, colour and top coat in no time at all and didn’t smudge it at any point. This has never happened. So many times I’ve accidentally smudged my nails because while they felt dry to touch, all the layers underneath hadn’t actually dried.

Overall thoughts

I’m glad I tried this range. I’m really disappointed about the black but I think even if the formula wasn’t faulty I know I would have struggled to use it with that terrible brush. Customer service were fantastic though. They weren’t however when I purchased my products originally. I quickly made a purchase on Black Friday because too many times I’d seen things go out of stock and everything was actually available for a change. However, the next day they improved the offer (increased percentage off) AND threw in an additional bottle (Royal Blue) with all orders. I was pretty hacked off that it had changed less than 24 hours after my purchase. Some people reached out to customer services and received a refund of the difference. However, I didn’t. I kind of felt a bit fobbed off and it left a bitter taste in my mouth.

I had factored in customs fees when I made this purchase. Luckily, I didn’t get hit! I have now heard that they’ve changed postal carrier and will now be collecting the customs fees upfront. So the overall shipping cost will be higher, but at least you won’t get that dreaded slip any more.

However, I won’t be making another purchase. While I liked most of the products, that brush is a deal breaker. When they have a better brush (flat and wide) I’ll rethink, but for now I’ll stick with what I’ve got.