The Mavala manicure

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I’m having a love affair with nail polish. Good, old-fashioned, air-dry polish – none of that flashy new-man-on-the-block gel nonsense. Just polish, plain and simple.

Having abused my nails in recent months with continuous Shellac nail manicures, I’ve taken a break to let my poor nails recover. Recently, I was given a few Mavala products to try. Mavala specialise in nail treatment care, so I knew my gnarled nailbeds were in for some TLC.

The Swiss beauty brand has been around forever in Ireland – and with good reason. With 30 years of science behind its nail line, it’s a trusted brand that works. Even just picking up their dinky little pots in McCabes and Boots takes me right back to my teens and my then-obsession with metallic manicures inspired by Babylon Zoo’s Levi Spaceman ads. Flashbackarama!

Mavala Nail Hardener

After months of Shellac, I needed to toughen up my now-weakened nails and opted for Mavala’s top-selling nail hardener. Mavala recommends applying this twice a week on clean, polish-free nails for best results. I’ve been using it anytime my nails are in need of a polish touch-up, and have found my nails are slowly returning to their former glory. A no-nonsense product that delivers results.

Mavala Super Base

I’m going to be Captain Obvious here when I say I always apply a base coat before any polish. This may sound like basic manicure know-how, but you’d be amazed how many ladies out there just slap the polish on bare nails and go. I used to do that too before I realised the error of my ways. A base coat provides a much needed barrier against strong colours. Without a base, nails will stain and become discoloured. Not a good look. Mavala’s Super Base goes on like a dream, dries quickly, and the polish glides on for a long-lasting, chip-free finish. Best of all, my manicure lasted a week, even with a toddler to pick up after.

Mavala Nail Polish in Vegas Pink

I’ve always loved the mini Mavala polishes as nothing ever goes to waste unlike larger polish pots. And at €6 at pot, updating your look won’t break the bank. Unable to resist a pink, I tried Mavala’s Vegas Pink and two other shades Velvet (a soft, rose-tinted beige) and Mexico (a rich, blue-toned purple). Let’s just say, I’m obsessed with Vegas Pink (see my results in the gallery), so much so, the other two shades haven’t even had a look in. A bright pop of colour, the polish glides on smoothly and dries quickly. I applied a second coat for added depth. TBI is tickled pink with this one.

Mavala Colorfix Top Coat

Top coat is a no-brainer. If you want your colour to last, it’s a must. I particularly like the Mavala Colorfix Top Coat – a clear top coat which dries to a hard glaze. I was chip-free for a week. Result!

Mavala Cuticle Oil

Cuticle oil is another no-brainer. I keep a bottle by my toothbrush as a nightly reminder to apply the oil before bed.  I apply the oil around the nail heart, particularly at the base and massage for a few seconds until absorbed. Voilà! Awesome cuticles in record time.

Mavala Nail Polish Removers

Finally, my mum always had a bottle of Mavala’s remover knocking around the bathroom cabinet or pot of remover pads in the handbag. The pot of pads are particularly handy for touch-ups during polish application, especially if you don’t have a steady hand. With cheaper removers, I find I have to scrub at the nails to remove deep colours, but not so with Mavala. Great value at just over €3 each.


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