Max Factor Gel Shine Lacquer Nail Polish Review

I've always loved the high-shine finish of gel nails, but have been a bit scared to take the plunge because I like to change my nail polish so regularly! Max Factor's new nail launch is the perfect compromise - offering a high-shine, gel-like finish, but without the need for UV lamps or a two-week wear time.

Max Factor Gel Shine lacquer nail polishes, Gleaming Teal, Lacquered Violet, Sheen Merlot, Patent Poppy

Max Factor Gel Shine lacquer nail polish swatches Gleaming Teal, Lacquered Violet, Sheen Merlot, Patent Poppy
L-R Gleaming Teal, Lacquered Violet, Sheen Merlot, Patent Poppy

There are nine shades in the Gel Shine Lacquer line, and I've picked out four shades that I think are the perfect autumn winter companions. I've completely fallen for Sheen Merlot, a dark berry shade, which is seriously rich in pigment and is almost mirror-like in its shine. You definitely need two coats to get an even finish, but they dry pretty quickly so it's not too much of a pain to deal with. 

Lacquered Violet is a gorgeous purple shade that's a bit different for AW, but I love the depth of the colour and it's a nice way to wear something that's a bit bold, without reverting to the typical brights of the summer. 

All of the shades I tried had seriously high-shine finishes to them - the swatches pictured are taken without any topcoat over them. They really do have that gel nail look to them. I was even asked a couple of times if I was wearing a gel shade when I had Sheen Merlot on, so that's definitely a good sign!

The wear time is pretty average - I get around 3 days before chips start to appear, so although you'll get the finish of a gel nail, you definitely don't get the staying power. That's to be expected - I've only found one non-gel nail polish that lasts a week on me, so I don't expect miracles without a UV lamp involved! 

The Gel Shine Lacquers are in Boots and Superdrug stores now and cost £6.99. If you prefer brighter shades, there's an amazing neon orange called Vivid Vermillion which is calling my name. I'm hoping they bring out some pastel shades in this finish for the spring - I can fast see it becoming one of my favourite nail polish formulas and a larger shade selection would be great.

Have you tried the new Gel Shine Lacquers from Max Factor? What do you think of these polishes?

*PR samples


  1. Sheen Merlo looks bloody amazing!! I will definitely be picking this up tomorrow ah!!xo

  2. Love these shades! It's a shame that they chip because they look so beautiful! x


  3. I've been using Essie nail polish for the longest time bt think it's time to change it up!
    www.populairelife.co.uk x


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