Style

Everyday Nail Polish

Cup of Jo has been running for 13 years (!) so we’ve decided that every week, we’ll be highlighting one of the most popular posts from the past. Here’s one of our favorites, originally published on April 1, 2014.

This spring, my friend Gemma turned us onto this amazing nail polish: Dior Nail Glow. And now all our friends are wearing it. Have you ever tried it? Here’s how it works…

Here are nails without polish, above.

One coat, above.

Two coats, above.

Voila! Basically, Nail Glow, which is slightly pink, enhances the natural color of your nails: the pinks of the nails become pinker and the whites become whiter. It’s beautifully glossy in person (it was hard to capture in photos!); plus, it’s easy to apply and makes nails look really clean. Your nails just look DONE. I’d highly recommend it as an everyday spring color.

P.S. Small gold earrings.

(Photos by Alpha Smoot for A Cup of Jo. Styling and handle modeling by Kendra Smoot. Gold dot ring by Basha Burwell.)

  1. B says...

    Do you need to use a base and topcoat with this Dior polish?

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      we didn’t!

  2. This is just what I need for a pick me up and the perfect everyday polish. Thank you!!

  3. Laura says...

    I have to share that Essie has made a wonderful “dupe” for Dior Nail Glow called “Pink Glove Service” – looks exactly the same but 1/4 the price!

  4. Em says...

    Not to mention. The price! A really well priced, cruelty free alternative is ORLYs Bare Rose french manicure polish. Its only about $7 and looks just as good. Really any slight pi k or rose tinted clear polish for french manicures will do. But ORLY is the best.

  5. chris says...

    I love Nail Kale and some of the other Nails Inc. polishes. They go on smooth and are cheaper than the Dior.

  6. Stephney Drinkard says...

    Love Dior glow, almost the only polish I wear all year long. Going on 5 years. Hope this doesn’t mean I’m in a polish rut

  7. Sharon says...

    Just wanted to add, in my quest to streamline my routines, I have quit the nail salon and shellac in favor of at home care. For me, I found my nails are still weak and a bit thin at this point.

    My tip: only 1 coat of polish.

    I have to be selective in what polish doesn’t look streaky (this dior option would be perfect), but with 1 coat I don’t deal with the peeling and can get extra mileage on my manicure. With a traditional two coats and base coat, it all starts to lift by DAY 2.

  8. Jessica says...

    I *love* Dior’s Nail Glow, BUT if you’re interested in an alternative option (with extra flair!) , try “Perfect Formula Pink Gel Coat.”

    The reason I love this stuff is that it has the exact same effect as Dior’s, but it’s a nail strengthener and when it hits UV light it almost has a purple tint! It’s my go-to: no issues with destroying my fragile nails and love having that fun color changing effect. Like a mood ring for sunlight on your nails!

    Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01KYG01G2

    • Gabbie says...

      I second this. I’ve never tried Dior’s Nail Glow but I have tried this brand and it’s excellent!

    • Maggie says...

      This stuff flaked off for me after just 1 shower! I was so sad, because it really looks so beautiful on your nails.

  9. Stefanie says...

    This looks really pretty! And such a nice idea to highlight popular past posts. Just read this while waiting for my nails to dry. Love using ridge filler instead of polish right now. Just one coat, dries really fast and looks as if I made an effort :-) totally recommend.

  10. I will be a forever fan of that polish after the original post!

  11. Meghan says...

    I purchased this polish but it killed my nails! Be aware, it’s not kind. Also, Dior sent it in the most ridiculous, over-the-top packaging. Not environmentally friendly to say the least.

    Sadly, I don’t recommend it.

  12. Linds says...

    I mixed a drop or two of fuschia into a clear Essie polish. A couple shakes and it’s good to go. Has the same effect at 1/3 of the price of Dior! (add the pink one drop at a time and test as you go to make sure you don’t over-pigment)

  13. Denise says...

    Does anyone have a non-toxic recommendation?

    • Shannon says...

      I second the request for a non-toxic version!

    • Stephanie Snider says...

      Zoya makes something similar— can’t remember the name, but I think it’s got “natural” in the name…

  14. Mindy says...

    Wearing this polish now! Because of this blog post from so many years ago! It’s the best! The polish and the blog!

    • Kathryn says...

      me too!

  15. Lisa Terwilliger says...

    Give Ballet Slippers or Mademoiselle a try from Essie – very similar look. But I think a must-have is cuticle oil. There are lots of different ones – Essie has apricot oil and Pacifica has rose oil but both make your nails look amazing with or without polish!

  16. Becca says...

    Wow I have been through 3 bottles since 2014! Love this nail polish so much.

  17. Jess says...

    I LOVE the idea of this, but does anyone know if there’s a product that enhances your nails without the shine? I love the look of natural nails but would love something that enhances the colour and texture of mine – without the give-away sheen of polish. I’ve been looking for something ever since this post originally came out! Can anyone put me out of my misery?

    P.S. Love reviewing these older posts! It’s amazing really how little styles have changed over the last 13 years. I quite often refer back the old hair tutorials – so cute!

    • Emily says...

      Hello! I have two suggestions. Have you ever buffed your nails, with an old school buffing block? That makes them look naturally shiny and manicured, without polish. My other idea would be to use this product (or follow one of the others’ advice to add some red nail polish drops to a bottle of clear) and then follow up with a matte topcoat that takes away the shine.

    • Orly BB Creme for nails! Will add a tiny bit of shine, but one coat basically just makes your nails look like *better* versions of themselves!

  18. Polished R says...

    I’m loving this flashback content — it’s like catching up with an old friend or wearing an old outfit that never disappoints. I finally lashed out and bought a bottle of this polish today, after surviving a four-hour committee meeting at work ? xx

  19. Mina says...

    Dior nail-glow has been my go-to since this post! Love it. Especially since it doesn’t show as much when it’s starting to wear off.

    • Bekkah says...

      Same! I take it with me when traveling because I don’t have to worry about bringing nail polish remover also, I just let it wear off over time or add another coat and call it a day!

  20. Priscilla says...

    I bought this after reading the original post and have used it exclusively on my fingernails ever since. I like that it is impossible to mess up and also dries faster than regular clear nail polish- I have 3 kids under the age of 5 and this is the only way I’m getting a manicure! Thanks for consistently great beauty tips!

  21. Kate says...

    It’s the only polish I wear! (Okay, maybe because I am terrible at painting my nails–but it really does make me feel elegant and put-together!)

  22. Aya says...

    I wore this when I got married, after learning about it here, of course. Even just seeing this color makes me nostalgic.

  23. Lindsay says...

    I got this. I don’t ever wear nail polish so I thought this would be nice, but the toxic smell just really bothers me! am I the only one?! Even after washing my hands many times, I could smell it. I do wear nail polish on my toes but I guess my hands are near my face a lot. This one just seemed stronger smelling though.

    • L says...

      Agree, especially after using such awesome non toxic polishes like Dazzle Dry (honestly your manicure will last 7-10 days without chipping because of their amazingggg base and top coats), or Sunday Studios polish!

  24. Carly says...

    As a person who works in a lab and is always taking gloves on and off, I love this polish (and the dupes mentioned in the comments). So pretty, but no need to worry if it pops off in the glove. :)

  25. Andrea says...

    Just want to say I love that you’re doing this. In a cyber world that’s constantly striving to push out new, fresh, exciting content, thank you for celebrating some past still-fresh, lovely content.

    • Sarz says...

      I agree! It reminds me of the past pleasure of looking over magazine back-issues, back when print media was what we had. ?

  26. Midge says...

    I can’t believe that was five years ago! Been using Nail Glow ever since, but I layer it over one coat of Ballet Slippers. Perfection.

  27. Cecile says...

    It’s the stuff my dreams are made of, but it looks like my nails can’t have it. I started using clear nail polish (Kure) a few months ago and – as a result, it seems – my nails got very brittle. Splitting and tearing all the time now. Is it just me? So desperate to look like a lady!

  28. seattleheather says...

    I’ve been buying this (and telling everyone about it) since you first posted this article. LOVE DIOR NAIL GLOW! :) I work in an office but do not like to wear polish and this takes care of everything for me, once a week and the whole process takes about 5 mins.

  29. Heather says...

    Okay so does this mean I have been *thinking* about purchasing this since 2014?!?! It’s time to go for it!

    • MJ says...

      Bahaha I was thinking this same thing! “self, just buy the stuff already”

    • alice says...

      Me too!

    • Sarah says...

      Do it! I bought it after years of dithering and I’m so happy I did. I gave it to a sweet co-worker as a gift because she complimented my nails when I first wore it.

    • MJ says...

      Hahaha SAME.
      (From a different MJ:)

  30. Emily S says...

    Finally pulled the trigger on this – intrigued by it on your feature with Lulu! I had a $25 gift card from Nordstrom, so was able to justify the steep price :) thx!

  31. Danielle says...

    I feel like I’ve tried every sheer nail polish but sometimes there just isn’t enough tint. Ages ago in the comments on CoJ someone suggested adding a few drops of red nail polish to a bottle of clear. You can control your color level that way (if you want more or less pink). It works perfectly and I’ve been doing it ever since.

    • Mallory says...

      Terrific Idea. I just did this last night and my nails looks AMAZING. I added 2 drops of red into a bottle of clear gel polish – it was a little hard to mix so I added a teeny tiny drop of polish thinner, gave it a good shake and voila!!! I’m on a spending freeze so this is a double win. Thank you for sharing :)

  32. Shari says...

    I’m the weirdo who doesn’t like sheer polishes–the tint always feels off to me, like it was meant to look one way and doesn’t, even though I know sheerness is the desired effect. Who knows why? For very simple, I stick with Essie “Ballet Slippers”; for a natural pink, I use OPI “It’s Nata To Me”; for a simple silver, I use OPI “Happy Anniversary”; and finally, when I want some flashy color (usually on my toes!) I have OPI “Strawberry Margarita.”

    If I just want to look subtly more put-together, I use clear polish. Which is pretty rare to use on its own, nowadays, I guess? But it provides a touch of shine, no more.

    • celeste says...

      Thanks for all these beautiful recs! I went out and got “Strawberry Margarita” – making my boring January self a little more festive.

  33. Emily says...

    Sally Hansen’s Double Duty Base and Top Coat (the one with the blue lid!) does the *exact same thing* for $5.99. You can find it at any and every neighborhood convenience store.

    A single coat does the trick.

    Live your glamorous and budget-friendly lives, m’friends!

    • Emily says...

      Oops, forgot to note that it must be the bottle with the blue lid. The other SH top coats and base coats don’t have the same pink-ish effect.

    • Karen says...

      Yes, I use one by Orly that’s about $8

    • A says...

      Thanks, Emily! I ran upstairs to my medicine cabinet and tried your dupe with what I had on hand, Sally Hansen’s Hard as Nails and an L.A. Colors red. Couple drops of that and it worked a treat, as they say in the U.K.! As someone who has *also* been on the fence since 2014 on springing for the Dior (to top that–been pining for a bottle of Chanel’s Vamp since 1994! haha) I appreciate this effective, cheapskate beauty!

  34. Lindsay says...

    As a long, long-time reader, I have to say I’m disappointed in the concept of reprinting old content. There are already enough posts that feel redundant with what’s been said before, that I am not excited to read what I know I have already read before. I fear that there won’t be enough new content here to keep me coming back!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      oh, don’t worry! this is an additional post for the week (so wednesday now has 3 posts instead of 2 posts). it doesn’t replace any new content, it’s just an extra post to highlight past content from years and years ago that many readers may not have seen.

      we always want our content to feel fresh and new and will continue to do so!

    • Christina says...

      I have to say I LOVE this concept. Sometimes i miss a few weeks due to being busy or travelling, and I’m also happy to revisit and be reminded of the most buzzworthy posts!

    • Jules says...

      I’m just delighted that we get such lovely free content. And I missed this post, so thank you CoJ.

    • Laura says...

      You must have a stellar memory! I’ve been reading CoJ for a long time too, but have the opposite opinion on these re-posts: they’re great for refreshing my memory of wonderful ideas from long ago. :)

    • Lulu says...

      Hi Lindsay,
      I think re-printing content is a lovely way to find out about COJ posts we may have missed, or re-vist some old faves.

      I loved the original post : )
      Cup of Jo is a wonderful way of finding out about products. I went out and bought a bottle and was very happy with the pretty and delicate result. Your nails feel clean and polished but not over-done. ( I actually have it on my nails as I type this!).

      Enjoy the rest of your day.

      Cheers from Lulu

    • Lindsay says...

      I guess I do have a good memory, and I do read every single post! I’ve always read in Google Reader and now Feedly, so I never miss any, though I do tend to skip over the recipes! I for sure remember this one! When I first saw the top of the post, I thought “Oh, that’s Kendra Smoot, weird, she hasn’t been on here in years…” and then I realized it’s for the same nail stuff!

      I’m so glad to hear that these won’t replace new content, Joanna!!

  35. Becky says...

    Ohmygosh I forgot all about this post!!! I knew something like this existed but havent been able to find anything at target, ulta, etc like this. Store employees think I’m crazy. As an artist working with ink and paint I just dont see the investment in having my nails done but this! THIS! will help add a little bit of glam to my everyday!

  36. Cathy says...

    Time for A Gemma update!!

  37. Kim Gray says...

    This is so well timed. I have this on my nails currently, totally bought it based on the recommendation from the original post! My bottle is almost due for replacement too, it’s one of my favorites! :)

    • TC says...

      Thank you for this! I’ve always wanted to try the Dior one but they test on animals.

    • Karen says...

      Yep, commented about it above. $28 for nail polish? Seriously?

  38. Jules says...

    Anyone know where you can find the tinier band pictured ? I have the same size wedding band as the “bigger” one and would love to stack like this when I dont wear my engagement ring!

    • Jules says...

      Just saw in a reply below. Woot woot!

  39. Julie says...

    Would be so curious to know how you define popular, most comments? most reads? Most affiliate link clicks? Just curious.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      most page views! :)

  40. Natasha says...

    Dior also made “Cheek and lip glow” — a very subtle thing for, well, cheeks and lips. Just the thing you need to look fresh and awake but seemingly without and makeup. I’m so sad it seems to be discontinued.

  41. Erin says...

    I remember this post. I bought the polish as a result and STILL use it. It’s a classic and make my short, slightly bitten nails look nice.

    • Susan says...

      Me too! Makes me feel like a lady.

    • Alisha says...

      Me, too! And still gift it regularly. Crazy that was so long ago.

  42. Kerry Ann says...

    Great Find! I must admit at first I thought it was just another nail polish, a pricey one at that. Was I ever wrong this polish is amazing. It is now my
    go to gift for girlfriends. Thanks!!!

    • Marie says...

      If you don’t mind my asking, how is it different from a simple clear nail polish?

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      it has a slightly pink tone and is really glossy. it’s SO pretty in person. you can really tell the difference.

  43. LOVE this polish. Literally my go to and day to day nail polish. Perfect balance between sheen and color. Love this post!!

  44. RebeccaNYC says...

    Cutex used to sell this very same type of polish. I think it cost, oh… $1.99? I wonder what ever happened to it…..

  45. Ok, I finally splurged and bought this polish because of your post. It’s the most I’ve spent for a bottle in my life! But I have to say, so far, it was worth every penny! It looks so pretty on!!! I also love that it takes only two coats and it dries quickly. It’s great for a mom on the go for sure.

  46. Wow! It makes hands look so sophisticated, nice choice.

  47. This polish is so great! I love it:)

  48. This polish looks great! I’d like to try it. Thank you for the recommendation, Joanna :)

  49. Muji makes a very similar polish, but in red, which goes on pink. Perfect after 2 coats! My girlfriend picked it up in Tokyo, however, it might be sold at the Muji store in NYC. x

  50. this sounds amazing! I crave the kinds of nails that just look healthy and polished without looking salony- maybe this is the holy grail

  51. Are those your hands? To whomever those hands belong to: lovely hands. :)

  52. I went to Sephora today to buy some other things, and decided to try this nail polish on. I’m sad to report that it just looks any regular clear nail polish with a pinkish tint.

    • SB says...

      This comment make me lol, I’ve been meaning to seek this stuff out but wondered about this in the back of my mind.

  53. Love how natural it looks!

  54. Saw this post and had to try it out. I love it! I think I’m going to stick to just one coat, otherwise it’s too pink for me. Thanks for the suggestion, Joanna!

  55. I love simple yet cute nail polishes! Thanks for this :)
    xo,
    ~Pauline @Kallony

  56. How had I not heard of this gem yet?? I love the au natural look of this with the pink tint! going to share this with all of my girlfriends immediately!

  57. Beautiful color and beautiful jewelry. This will be great for me because I’m a jewelry designer so my nail polish is always chipped. This would be a good solution because it wouldn’t show the chips though.

    http://juliaparkerdesigns.com

  58. A manicurist that I went to once told me that she always uses Essie’s Sugar Daddy and since then I’ve noticed that every manicurist has it as the “clear” polish that they keep in their drawer! So that’s my go to for pretty, shiny nails. But that Glow looks so nice too…

  59. mj says...

    To the person who said to try clear polish and a few drops of red polish? It works! Cost me less than 4 dollars and got the same effect. Thanks!

  60. OMG. This is going to look so amazing on my gorgeous pregnancy nails!!! Thank you, Joanna. :)

  61. Thanks for the recommendation! I normally don’t wear polish on a daily basis (because I’m so bad at the upkeep but can’t stand chipping). This seems like a great compromise to my laziness though!

  62. After reading this post, I ran out to Sephora and bought it. Love the effect. Thanks so much for the recommendation.

  63. Beautiful!! Adding to my wishlist! ;)

  64. Love it- when I was younger and got french manicure at the nail salon- they used something similar, but I always thought it was some sort of special nail salon only product that us regular people couldn’t get. I will be picking this up before my next at home manicure.

  65. To the people who think the price is too steep – think of this this way… yeah it’s $25, but a bottle will last you like two years (even with regular use). That’s not so bad… I bet most of you don’t think twice about spending $5 a day on coffee.

  66. I have been using this for several months now… I love it!!

  67. I second the Hard as Nails version. It is usually $1-$2 and has been around FOREVER. I remember my mom using it in the early 90s.

  68. Barbara, Sally Hansen also makes a polish that is similar – “Hard as Nails” Natural Tint – it’s only a few dollars!

  69. Thanks for this post, but I wish you would also post alternatives at different price points. Most people I know wouldn’t dare spend $25 on clear nail polish, no matter how great it works.

    • Amanda says...

      I found a very similar dupe last month that is also part of Target’s “Clean” line for $8.99. (probably hard to really do “clean” nail polish, but I love it). The color is Sweet Serenity and it looks just like the Dior on.

    • Laura says...

      Oh I love this idea of sharing alternatives (of featured products) in different price ranges!

  70. To get the same effect put two drops of red polish in a bottle of clear polish and mix it up well. Viola. Same thing.. It’s an old (cheap) trick.

  71. I think that is so pretty. I pretty much only wear subtle colours on my fingers (and dark on my toes) and since I have an active toddler am looking for something good! Expensive, yes, but my experience with Dior is the quality is worth it (I would rather have that as opposed a few expensive coffees)

  72. The lipstick of that is really great too!

  73. Wait, so $25 clear nail polish is not an April Fool’s joke?

  74. thanks for the budget recommendations, eleanor and jenny!

    • Kim W says...

      I bought this shortly after this posted & it’s the bomb. The bottle has lasted forever & I’ve saved $$$$ on manicures which personally I find torturous.
      I also recommend Dior’s apricot cuticle cream. It’s pricey but honestly worth it & a little goes a long long way.
      The small gold earring post is a fave too….

  75. Love this! but expensive for a student family:(. You should use this as a give away sometime!! :)

  76. jm says...

    i have tried this polish and it is amazing! So shiny and gorgeous.

  77. I JUST looked at this stuff yesterday! I love the natural effect on your nails…. it’s a great way to have something going on in the nail department, but without the obvious chipping!

    Emily
    emilyannestyle.com

  78. Love this!! Do you know of anything comparable that is a bit more affordable?

    Though I love Dior, not sure I could splurge $25 for polish.

    xoDonna
    http://www.soyouagree.com

  79. D2 says...

    LOVE this polish! And easy to apply at home = fab! And love the rings too.

  80. Growing up my mom wore a very similar nail polish by Dior – she was never fancy about other things in life but she was fully committed to the Dior Polish. So classic and it looked beautiful on her nails. I forgot about this until now – thank you! I am going to order mine today.

  81. Very pretty! I like that it’s something that I can apply myself. Whenever I try to do my own nails with a darker color, it looks so messy!!

    -Josephina

  82. Neat! Back when I was ‘too young’ for nail polish, I would color all my nails with a pink Magic Marker and then rub it off, leaving a pink stain behind.

  83. Essie also has a similar polish for a lot less.

  84. I use the oxygen polish by Julep and have the same effects!

  85. $25 for a clear pink polish…April Fools?

  86. @sarah, the tiny thin one is from catbird, the other band was made at a jeweler’s, and the gold bangle is from General Store in San Francisco. thanks!

  87. I have this! I agree, it’s so easy to apply and your nails just looked nicer.

    • Mo says...

      I’ve been in love with this stuff for years and years! My first bottle from 2014 lasted until 2018, it’s so worth the price. I love how fast it dries (as a new mom it was a perfect pick me up!). I’m also a die hard fan of Dior Lip glow! Both products are so low maintenance and unfussy but make me feel instantly prettier!