If you haven't used a ridge filler before applying your nail polish, you should. Why? Because it creates a splash guard between where you want your polish to go and where you don't want it to go. It's a great way to prevent messy manicures and manicures that look like you did them yourself. You know the kind I'm talking about. You know when you go get your nails painted by someone else, it looks so nice and neat and there is that perfect line before your cuticle where your nail polish doesn't cross? A ridge filler can do this for you at home. I've heard they are especially useful when using dark polish colors. Use it on the toes as well! I've seen one from Seche Vite in CVS which didn't get very glowing reviews on MakeupAlley.com as well as one from Orly that did a bit better in the reviews category. There are also more expensive brands that make their own Ridge Fillers like Deborah Lippmann and Butter London (which is BOGO free on Sept 20th at Ulta, see the post below for more deets). Personally, I'm gonna go for the Seche Vite or Orly due to lower price and easier accessibility.
And there you have it! BTW, the Essie Demure vix + Essie Let it Shine Topcoat wore beautifully and better than any other Essie/Top Coat combo. I got 6 days out of that manicure before I saw a little bit of chipping (that wasn't even that noticeable). Six days is the ultimate in my manicures and I rarely make it to that mark. I'm guessing it was the Let it Shine topcoat that did the trick. Either way, I adore that polish color and you will too so check it out.