• Top 16 Best Japanese Base Coats for Nails to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True! 1
  • Top 16 Best Japanese Base Coats for Nails to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True! 2
  • Top 16 Best Japanese Base Coats for Nails to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True! 3
  • Top 16 Best Japanese Base Coats for Nails to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True! 4
  • Top 16 Best Japanese Base Coats for Nails to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True! 5

Top 16 Best Japanese Base Coats for Nails to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True!

Our editors and a nail expert have scoured the net to find which base coats for nails were the best. They searched Japanese e-commerce sites such as @cosme, Amazon, and Rakuten to find the best products and ended up with 16.


They then tested each of them to gauge how long they lasted, how quickly they dried, and how easy they were to apply. Finally, we compiled our results into a ranking and a buying guide of how to choose the best base coat for you.

This article's specialists

Yukari Matsuya
  • Last updated: 01-09-2020
  • 432 views
Table of Contents

Top 16 Best Japanese Base Coats for Nails to Buy Online

We picked out 16 of the most popular products and tested them for the following: how long they lasted, how quickly they dried, and how easy they were to apply.


Then, based on how they performed on our tests, we graded and ranked the top 16 Japanese base coats available online.


※Japanese prices for the some of the products are given; they’ve merely been converted into USD for easy viewing.

1

OrbisNail Care Protector

Clear Pink

$5.73

Japaneseオルビス ネイルケアプロテクター
TypeHardener
FinishClear pink
Durability5.0
Drying speed3.0
Ease of application3.0
Overall score5.0
2
JapaneseD-UP ネイルファンデーション
TypeConcealer
FinishNude beige
Durability4.0
Drying speed1.0
Ease of application5.0
Overall score4.0
3

AddictionThe Base Coat

$32.24

JapaneseADDICTION ザ ベースコート
TypeConcealer
FinishMilky white
Durability4.0
Drying speed2.0
Ease of application4.0
Overall score4.0
4
JapaneseDucato 発色UPベースコート
TypeConcealer
FinishMilky white
Durability4.0
Drying speed2.0
Ease of application3.0
Overall score3.0
5

KoseNail Holic Base Coat

SP031

$8.72

Japaneseネイルホリック ベースコート
TypeConcealer
FinishMilky white
Durability4.0
Drying speed2.0
Ease of application2.0
Overall score3.0
6

ukauka color base coat zero

2/0 Flushed Pink

$30.00

Japaneseuka color base coat zero
TypeColor base
FinishNatural pink
Durability4.0
Drying speed1.0
Ease of application3.0
Overall score3.0
7
Japanese無印良品 ベースコート
TypeColor base
FinishClear and semi-matte
Durability4.0
Drying speed1.0
Ease of application3.0
Overall score3.0
8
Japaneseシュガードール オールインワンネイルN
TypeConcealer
FinishClear pink
Durability4.0
Drying speed1.0
Ease of application3.0
Overall score3.0

Compare the Best Japanese Base Coats for Nails

Image
1
Orbis Nail Care Protector 1

Orbis

2
D-UP Nail Foundation 1

D-UP

3
Addiction The Base Coat 1

Addiction

4
Ducato Nail Color UP Base Coat 1

Ducato

5
Kose Nail Holic Base Coat 1

Kose

6
uka uka color base coat zero 1

uka

7
Muji Base Coat 1

Muji

8
Sugar Doll All in One Nail N 1

Sugar Doll

Name

Nail Care Protector

Nail Foundation

The Base Coat

Nail Color UP Base Coat

Nail Holic Base Coat

uka color base coat zero

Base Coat

All in One Nail N

FeaturesThe Very Best Japanese Base...The Best Concealer for Your...A Long-lasting and Color-en...A Great Base Coat to Wear B...A Durable Concealer for You...The Best Base Coat for a Na...Recommended for Those Who W...The Best All-in-one Nail Pr...
Price$5.73$14.99$32.24$7.53$8.72$30.00$9.70$9.04
Japaneseオルビス ネイルケアプロテクターD-UP ネイルファンデーションADDICTION ザ ベースコートDucato 発色UPベースコートネイルホリック ベースコートuka color base coat zero無印良品 ベースコートシュガードール オールインワンネイルN
TypeHardenerConcealerConcealerConcealerConcealerColor baseColor baseConcealer
FinishClear pinkNude beigeMilky whiteMilky whiteMilky whiteNatural pinkClear and semi-matteClear pink
Durability5.04.04.04.04.04.04.04.0
Drying speed3.01.02.02.02.01.01.01.0
Ease of application3.05.04.03.02.03.03.03.0
Overall score5.04.04.03.03.03.03.03.0
Link

Products That Didn't Make the Cut

And why they didn't quite make it.

A Little Hard to Use

A Little Hard to Use

Though compact, we thought the thin and tall bottle of RMK Base Coat N made it difficult to paint the product on effectively. On the other hand, we thought the brush for Integrate Top & Base Coat N was too small.


As for Art collection Top & Base Coat, we thought the flat brush made it difficult to apply product both to the brush and to our nails. We'd only suggest this for base coat emergencies.

Takes Too Long to Dry

Takes Too Long to Dry

Even if you like to take your time painting your nails, these products may not be worth the wait. Chifure Base Coat was cheap, but we lost valuable time waiting for the base coat to dry. And though we loved the easy-to-use brush in Squse Me Glossy Milk Coat's bottle, it took a while for our painting to be finished.


Canmake Colorful Nails Nail Hardener gives you a lot of nail-strengthening features for under $5, but it took way too long to dry.

Didn't Last Very Long

Didn't Last Very Long

Interestingly enough, both of the products in this section are by the same maker. et tu sais Nail Guard and Quick Care Coat dried out pretty fast and were fairly easy to use, but they didn't last long; this means you have to use more product, which isn't very cost efficient.

Introducing the Expert Who Lent Us Their Knowledge

Introducing the Expert Who Lent Us Their Knowledge
Yukari Matsuya
<Beautiful Nail Creator>

She's the owner and head stylist at the natural nail salon "nailroom felicita".

She specializes in restoring and caring for nails that are damaged or a complex shape. She is also a lecturer on topics such as how to maintain healthy nails at home, how to use your nails, and the relation between nails and the body.

How We Tested the Base Coats

We put each of the base coats through a series of three tests to determine their effectiveness. One test measured its durability while the other two gauged how quickly it dried and how easy it was to use.

Test ① Durability

Test ① Durability

First, we wanted to know how long each base coat would last. We asked 8 of our editing staff to go about their daily lives for 5 days with the base coats on and then checked to see how much of the base coat remained.

Test ① Durability

The difference between the most durable and least durable products was pretty surprising: the toughest ones barely budged a millimeter while the weaker ones were half-gone by the time the test period was up.

Test ② Drying Speed

Test ② Drying Speed

Next, we wanted to see how long it took each of the base coats to dry completely. To test this, we applied each base coat to a nail chip, waited a minute, and then poured silver argent balls on them to see how many would stick.

Test ② Drying Speed

The fast-drying base coats had barely a handful of beads stuck to them while the slower ones were completely covered after the time limit.

Test ③ Ease of Use

Test ③ Ease of Use

Finally, we looked at how easy it was to use each product. We checked things like how easy it was to use the brush, whether or not the bottle was stable, and whether or not it corrected discoloration effectively.

Test ③ Ease of Use

The base coats that were easy to use came in a bottle that was easy to hold and had a long brush. They were both stable bottle-wise and took less effort to brush onto our nails.

How to Choose a Base Coat for Nails - Buying Guide

Here are three big things to look out for.

① Check out the Current State of Your Nails

Different base coats are suited for different nail issues, so take a look at your own and the base coat label before making a final decision.

No Nail Worries? Then You Don't Need Anything Special

No Nail Worries? Then You Don't Need Anything Special

If you have healthy nails and your main purpose for using a base coat is to protect and make your color last longer, you can go with a normal base coat. This means you probably don't have brittle or ridged nails, so you don't need to fix what isn't broken!

Choose a Ridge Filler if You Have Ridged Nails

Choose a Ridge Filler if You Have Ridged Nails

If you notice that your nails are dehydrated and not so smooth to the touch, then they're probably ridged. Using a ridge filler-type base coat will help smooth out and repair these bumps. They often contain moisturizing ingredients and will make your nail color look amazing.

Hardeners are Your Friend if You Have Brittle Nails

Hardeners are Your Friend if You Have Brittle Nails

If you find your nails bending and breaking easily, a hardener will help strengthen and repair your nails to a healthy texture. This can be caused by a lack of nutrients or dehydration, so we recommend looking for something with moisturizing ingredients like macadamia nut oil, coconut oil, or other plant-based oils.

Yukari Matsuya
Beautiful Nail Creator
Yukari Matsuya

Some people have brittle nails because they're not treating them properly. Your thumb, pointer finger, and middle finger are most often used, so these nails tend to break more easily.


My suggestion is to avoid scratching with your nails as much as possible and instead use the joint closest to the tip of your finger. That will put less pressure on your nails.

② Choose a Base Coat That's Easy to Use

There are a couple of types of base coats that will cut down on time and products, and we're here to introduce you to them.

Choose a 2-way or All-in-One Type if You Want to Cut Down on Products and Effort

Choose a 2-way or All-in-One Type if You Want to Cut Down on Products and Effort

Some of us don't want to spend a lot of money and effort on buying multiple products, and that's where all-in-one products come in handy. Some include a base coat, nail color, moisturizing ingredients, and top coat all in one.


The downside is that these often don't last as long as a quality base coat and they don't have vibrant color.

Peel-off Types are Great if You Only Need a Base Coat for a Couple of Days

Peel-off Types are Great if You Only Need a Base Coat for a Couple of Days

Peel-off type base coats allow you to remove the product without the use of nail polish remover, which saves you time and nail damage. They typically only last a few days at best. This would be great if you like to wear nail polish only on weekends or special occasions. 

③ Pick a Color That Suits Your Needs

③ Pick a Color That Suits Your Needs

Base coats can come in clear, soft, or faint colors. Use white-tinted base coats to fix the look of discoloration and yellow- or pink-tinted coats to make dull nails look more lively.

How to Make Your Base Coat Last Longer

How to Make Your Base Coat Last Longer

The key to getting the most out of your base coat is to wash and sanitize your hands thoroughly before painting your nails. This prevents oil and small particles from getting stuck under your nail polish.


Also, over-painting not only causes unevenness; it also causes your base coat to come off earlier than it should. Wipe excess product off the brush before using it every time.

Yukari Matsuya
Beautiful Nail Creator
Yukari Matsuya

Nails can look totally smooth, but they're actually a bit like scales. Base coats fill in this scaly texture to make a smoother surface for nail polish to go on, creating a more aesthetically pleasing result. 


You should never file the surface of your nails excessively, but giving them a brief sanding before painting makes it easier for product to adhere to them.

Perfect Your Nails with These Other Awesome Nail Products

Perfect Your Nails with These Other Awesome Nail Products

Don't you want the nicest nails the block? Then you need the best nail products!

Summary

We rounded up a nail expert and members of our editing department, purchased the 16 most popular Japanese base coats for nails, and tested them all.


We found that the best of the best base coats barely budged after 5 days, dried quickly, and had a thick bottle with a long brush. Your perfect base coat is ultimately determined by the current state of your nails, but we hope we've given you a good place to start!

Author: Haruka Toda/Translation: Shannon McNaught/Photos: Koichi Miura, Yuuki Inagaki, Rika Tomomatsu

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