L'OrÉAl Jet Set

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L'Oreal Jet Set - A Nail Polish Actually Worth My Time

Apr 18, 2001 (Updated Sep 8, 2001)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review
  • User Rating: Excellent

  • Durability:

Pros:some colours last, wide range of colours, cheap

Cons:some colours don't last

The Bottom Line: A wide range of colours and decent durability should make L'Oreal Jet-Set a good choice for nail polish.


As of today, 18 April 2001, I own over 100 bottles of nail polish. Everything from cheap “Wet N’ Wild” brand polish to expensive MAC and Urban Decay polish can be found in my cabinet. Half of these polishes rarely see the light of day, but all have been used once, if not more. In my quest to find the perfect polish, I have become the absolute cosmetic company’s dream.

In that quest for the perfect polish, I have become an absolute sucker for new colours and sales at various local drug stores.

Such was the case for my sucker-dom at the local Walgreen’s. I’d originally gone in only to purchase some Cadbury Crème Eggs (they were calling my name, I swear!) but, in typical “Let’s Find Something to Catch Courtney’s Eye” fashion, there was a brand new display of L’Oreal Jet-Set Quick Dry Nail Enamel (polish, if you prefer).

At the “Buy one, get one free” price (which made each .5 fluid ounce bottle only $1.50) I just couldn’t resist.

I’d purchased Jet-Set polish in the past, and, while it wasn’t something I adored, it wasn’t something I completely hated either. The Jet-Set line dried fairly quickly, came in decent dark shades (as well as the normal reds and pearls – a line of over 20 different shades existed at this particular Walgreen’s) and was available at most drug stores throughout the US.

For the price, I knew I could use each polish only a time or two and not feel guilty if I never used it again.

Picking up the dark purple shade (Nightlife) and the extremely dark navy blue and light sparkle shade (Boogie) I went home with my new polish (and handful of Cadbury Crème Eggs) and sat down to polish my nails.

The first Jet-Set polish I used on this second “try” at the line was the shade Boogie. As I expected, the polish went on thick but smooth and even. As I had remembered from previous usage, the polish was almost too thick for it’s own good, with it’s own weight pulling it to the sides of my nails and requiring a tad bid of blotting. The first coat of polish (with the polish applied to my bare nails, with no base coat) dried completely in about 3 minutes, with only half a minute of my seizure like hand waving. (I’m impatient, what can I say?)

I applied a thinner second coat of the polish, which dried in a little less than two minutes.

So far, so good.

The polish dried with no streaks or lumps, and, unlike other fast drying polishes, left no lines and visible “blemishes”.

The colour was nice – in indirect lighting, it looked completely black. In direct lighting, the blue tints were visible, as were a faint trace of the sparkles. Not as sparkly as a I had hoped, but adequate none-the-less.

I went on with my day, my nails freshly polished and shiny looking, without the aid of a top clear coat.

I honestly forgot about my nails until the next day – after I’d washed dishes, done general housework, and cleaned out the mouse cage. When I did look at my nails, I fully expected them to be chipped.

To my surprise, not one chip existed. The colour was still good, and the polish still looked shiny and fresh.

This, I assure you, was not what I normally get from any polish.

Only at the third day of L’Oreal’s Jet-Set Polish being on my nails did it start to chip. Unfortunately, as was the case with thick polishes, this polish peeled off in sheets fairly quickly.

I peeled off the rest (rest assured, polish sheets are fun to peel off when watching a particularly boring tv show) and then sat down to apply the purple shade, Nightlife.

I used the same process to apply Nightlife as I did with Boogie. I did, however, notice that Nightlife was not as thick in texture as was Boogie. I still got by with only two coats of the polish, and went on my merry way, expecting the different shade to last as long as the first had.

Not so, I was to find out.

Less than a day after application, my Nightlife shade had chipped on every single nail. Even more puzzling was the fact that I’d done less physical labor after applying the Nightlife shade of Jet-Set polish.

Thinking it was a fluke, I removed the rest of the polish (which also did not sheet off as nicely as the Boogie shade had) and re-polished my nails.

Same results.

I knew it was too good to be true.

Thankfully, however, a second polish with the Boogie shade resulted in exactly the same wear as it did the first time – a full three days with no chips, stretched into a week with a third coat at the first sign of a chip.

After this second “trial run” with the Jet-Set line, my three original colours (Jet – electric blue, Black Box – black, Activate – blood red) all were re-tested and performed with similar varying results – each lasted between half a day (Jet) and about three days (Activate).

My only guess about the discrepancies in wear-ability result from the formulas used to produce certain shades. While it would be nice for the whole L’Oreal Jet-Set line to have the same results, I can live with a shade or two that lasts for over a day.

As with any cosmetic, your mileage may vary – my nails have the habit of rejecting nail polish like the plague, which may mean that your nails will keep shades such as Nightlife on for a week or more at a time with no touch-ups.

At $1.50 a bottle (on sale) I would not hesitate in buying any shade I found even slightly attractive in the Jet-Set Quick Dry line. At the normal $3 a bottle, I’d be a bit more selective in my colour selections, but still would not hesitate to purchase another bottle.

After all, a girl can never have too much nail polish, can she?


Recommend this product? Yes


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