Beauty Test Drive: Dermelect ME Peptide Infused Nail Color Treatment

I’m not going to lie: I get a manicure once a week. It’s a luxury, yes, but for me it’s a necessary one that’s worth the $13 and twenty minutes of dry time. You see, I err on the side of, ahem, nonchalant when it comes to my “look” — I think Kate Moss, you see Courtney Love — so a glossy coat of fresh lacquer is often one of the few things that make my style cohesive. I may not have washed my hair in three days, my lipstick may be smeared and faded, my skirt may be on sideways, but look closely and you will see I’m not just any vagabond. I’m a vagabond with a manicure. It’s very Derelicte, my friends.

I usually go for a nude nail, given that I aim to have perfect plastic mannequin hands (Essie Brooch The Subject, hellooooo), but if I’m feeling lively I’ll choose a vivid red-tinged orange. Lately, though it pains me, I had been skipping the polish and leaving my beds bare. After several months as a OPI gel devotee, my once-strong nails were cracking, splitting, peeling off at the ends… it was a tragedy of substantial proportions. In the nick of time, Dermelect Cosmeceuticals, a brand that takes a very natural approach to skin and nail care free from harmful ingredients, sent me their ME Peptide Infused Nail Color Treatment. The color collection’s claims include strengthening weak, brittle nails and restoring flexibility without DBP, toluene, and formaldehyde. Having manicure withdrawal, I ran jogged took a cab to the nearest salon, Head Turner in hand. Here I am, showing it off. (I have very poor circulation, and possibly jaundice.)

Price/Availability: $14 per bottle isn’t cheap for a nail polish and could be a dealbreaker, but I prioritize high-quality, as-organic-as-possible technology, so I’m willing to shell out the money for those ingredients.

Packaging: An attractive rectangular glass bottle featuring the brand’s name. I accidentally dropped it on my tile kitchen floor and it lived!

Formula: Well, yeah, I don’t know exactly what’s in this nail polish or any others, but this formula certainly sounds convincing. It contains “ProSina Keratin Protein,” a pure protein peptide extracted from New Zealand sheep’s wool. Yeah! I noticed it didn’t smell as strongly as typical brands, which is a good sign. It goes on smoothly, and the creme finish is so glossy I could have skipped topcoat. I didn’t, though. I also loved the color and couldn’t stop staring at my hands. The bright orange was flattering even on my super-pale skin.

Wear Time: I must preface this by saying that I always, always destroy my manicure within 5-6 days, sometimes less. Part of the reason why I usually wear nudes and steer clear of vivid colors is because they seem to hold up better, with less noticeable chipping. I type constantly (hard and fast, baby), do dishes (like, once in a while), and am otherwise reckless in so, so many ways. With that said, Head Turner lasted 3 days on me completely flawless and chip-free. Even a week later it only looked kind of rough.

Overall: I enjoy this polish a lot and I’ll definitely use it again, as well as the other colors I received, on the occasions I stray from my nude. The only drawback to this formula is the price, which could be hard to swallow for someone whose nail polish budget maxes out at $8 (which brands like OPI and Essie go for). Selfishly, I would like for Dermelect to release a fleshy shade so I can wear it all the time.

Grade: 4/5

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