I Tried It… Sally Hansen Crackle Nail Polish

A review of Sally Hansen Crackle Nail Polish, tips on how to apply crackle nail polish, and reviews of the Sally Hansen Crackle Polish shades.

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Sally Hansen Crackle Overcoat Nail Polish Bottles

Product Info: Sally Hansen Crackle Overcoat

While perusing the shelves of my local drugstore, I came across a new nail polish product, Sally Hansen Crackle Overcoat. I remember the “crackle” style nail polishes from 10 years ago, but being a young girl at the time, I never had the chance to try them. However, nothing was going to stop me from trying the crackle polish trend this time around.

I’m sometimes wary of trying new products, but I feel that Sally Hansen creates quality products at reasonable prices. Plus, I’ve been using Sally Hansen’s Hard As Nails for years with great results.

Choosing which shade to purchase was probably the most difficult part of the process. The line features eight colors: Ink Splatter, Distressed Denim, Vintage Violet, Cherry Smash, Fuchsia Shock, Antiqued Gold, Fractured Foil, and Snow Blast. I chose Snow Blast because the white shade would have a strong contrast with most nail polishes I already own.

The Application Process:

Sally Hansen provides a video full of tips about application, so after reviewing that and the package instructions, I was ready to begin.

Step 1: Applying a Base Coat

First, I painted a base coat on my nails. Since it’s summer, I went with a bright fuchsia shade on all nails, except for a teal shade on my ring finger nails. I used Sinful Colors Professional nail polish in Dream On and Rise and Shine.

Sally Hansen Crackle Nail Polish: Base Layer

The Sally Hansen tutorial suggests applying two coats and allowing nails to dry completely before applying the Crackle Overcoat, so that’s what I did.

Steps 2 + 3: Crackle Overcoat & Top Coat

After allowing ample time for my base coat layers to dry, I applied a thick layer of the Crackle Overcoat in Snow Blast… and I did not care for the results. The nail polish appeared clumpy and very few “cracks” appeared. I was disappointed, but decided to give it another try.

After using nail polish remover to clean most of the polish off, I quickly reapplied the base coats where necessary and allowed my nails to dry once again. Then I went ahead and applied a much thinner and lighter coat of the Crackle Overcoat. As the polish dried, many more cracks began to appear, allowing the base coat colors to peek through. I was a million times more pleased with this look:

Sally Hansen Crackle Nail Polish: Finished product

Cute, right? After allowing the Crackle Overcoat to dry, I applied the Sally Hansen Hard As Nails as a top coat. The top coat added extra shine to my nails and made the contrast between the white and bright colors pop that much more.

Final Advice & Review:

From my experience, I recommend applying a thin layer of the Crackle Overcoat for best results – don’t lay this stuff on thick; it just won’t work if you do. Also, don’t forget to apply a clear top coat. Those two steps combined really make all the difference.

Due to its slightly tricky application, I rate the Sally Hansen Crackle Overcoat 4 stars out of 5.

The application was a bit difficult since the brush is rather small and the polish comes out thick, but after experimenting, I was pleased with my final look. I may try some other crackle polishes soon for comparison, but I did like the Sally Hansen product overall.

Your Thoughts?

Have you ever tried Sally Hansen Crackle Overcoat? What were your results and do you have any application tips to share? Or have you tried any comparable crackle style nail polishes? I’m already thinking of new color combos to try, like a glittery base coat under the Snow Blast. What would be your favorite Sally Hansen shade combinations? Let me know what you think!

33 thoughts on “I Tried It… Sally Hansen Crackle Nail Polish”

  1. not with the whole crackle thing, why not just use polish you have already and use a toothpick to make it look cracked? or chip your polish because this is what it reminds me of.

  2. I’m guessing you could get the same effect by messily applying white-out to your nails. Not so sure I’m crazy about this, at least in white.

  3. I’ve been wanting to try these, although I don’t like this particular color (I agree with what someone else said about it looking like white out!) – I do think it can look cute with the right color combinations.

  4. I have the OPI silver and black crackle. I used the black crackle over some gold nail polish and it created a cheetah print look without having to do any small detailed work!

  5. Okay I tried this but i put clear polish on the top and it kinda took it away ! So i’m not sure if i am suppose to use a top coat. Can someone tell if i should?

  6. @Tiana I use top coats on everything, including the crackles and it didn’t alter them a bit. Are you letting the crackle dry before adding it? IF so, I don’t know. Maybe the top coat and crackle don’t like each other. Lol

  7. i am a nail polish FREAK. when i saw this…crackle nail polish i said OMG I HAVE TO HAVE IT!!!! i got the white one and put a dark blue under and put a reg. layer on and i watched it and i was amazed (i get amazied by everything) i love it i plan on getting every color and hope there is more krazy nail polish coming soon!!!!!!!!!!

  8. I hate this brand of nail polish…
    Try Avon for the crackle stuff.
    It honestly works really well and as soon as you put it on!
    And its about $3, so you are getting it a lot cheaper 🙂

  9. I THINK IT WORKS PERFECTLY ……..The #1tip Is To NEVER Put A Think Mess ON IT…..Just Go Slow && Wow will You See The Differents ….. SIt Down And Do A Solid Coat I PROMIES Youll See A Different -GOOD LUCK

  10. I bought the Sally Hansen Crackle in Ink Splatter and LOVED it! I wore it over a Sally Hansen ultraviolet-y purple polish for my Halloween costume and it looked amazing – lots of cracks and gaps, so the color underneath really popped and shone through. I even tried it with dirt cheap sparkle polish on my toes and it worked wonders. Thin coats definitely work best. I want to try the silver or gold around Christmas time. Would definitely recommend to anyone wanting something a little edgier!

  11. So I’ve been wanting to give the whole crackle polish a try and decided on buying the Sally Hansen Vintage Violet last night. My first attempt was terrible. It got gloppy and gross. So I took it all off, let my double base coat of bright pink dry once again and took the time to research HOW to apply the crackle polish. Working from one side to the other, quickly and lightly produced much better results. I’m not 100% happy though, so I am going to give it another try. I have a feeling its all about technique with this stuff, so practice will make perfect right? And I agree, the top coat really does make it pop!

  12. I have the Sally Hansen Crackle coat in antique gold. The great thing about crackle is that you can get a bunch of different effects. I like to apply my crackle diagonally across my nail. I’ve even applied it side to side and sponged it on my nail, all giving different effects.

  13. I found that the only way I can get the top color to show up is if the crackle coat is the darker color. which meant my Idea for christmas crackle was a complete fail. I wanted to do a green base with the red crackle overcoat. other than that, I was impressed, and the black looks great on top of neon colors. for a party I did a neon yellow base, put a glow in the dark clear coat over it, then put the black crackle on top. everyone loved it. the exposed portion of the color glowed brightly under the black light, which also allowed the nails to glow brightly in the dark as well.

  14. I’ve tried the gold and silver crackle from Sally Hansen and like them pretty well. I think the white in any brand looks like correction fluid, and black crackle isn’t flattering to my older hands.

  15. I got the Fractured Foil color and painted it over a dull pink (Essie “Lady Like”). I love it! I was so amazed watching the crackle overcoat crack apart to create the pattern. When I use it again I think I’ll use a brighter base color.

  16. Using a thin black crackle overcoat with the gold base has a look similar to cheetah print. LOVE IT. For my Easter look, I used a bright color on each nail, then used a thin coat of white crackle, and they look kinda like Easter eggs 🙂

  17. DO NOT USE THE SALLY HANSEN crackle it does not work well i just wasted my time doing these nails now i have to re do them its ugly.

  18. As for the sally hansen crackle, I have tried the blue, the pink, and the black. The black seems to work much better than either of the others. Although I have later gotten some decent results with pink, the black is definitely the best one. Oh by the way, I use nail polish to paint metal boxes (see website) more than my nails.
    I have also found that you don’t really have to wait until the base coat is fully dry for it to work, and the effect you get varies depending on how you apply it. A thin coat will make many finer cracks, a thick coat will make fewer, but bigger cracks. Also if you paint in a single direction the cracks will sort of follow your brush strokes (like how it looks on the cap) whereas if you stab the brush, or sort of swirl it a bit, you’ll get a different, more chaotic network of cracks.

  19. Sally Hansen has always been the best in nail colors,but i find that the last few years the brushes are getting to thick.Is it possible for the factory to make the brushes thinner like they used to be..

  20. I’ve been using Avon mosaic effects which is basicly the same thing. Have it in white, silver and plum and use them over various contrasting colors. I love the effect and have gotten many positve comments from friends and strangers

  21. I still LOVE Sally Hansen Crackle when you put either black, or my favorite “distressed denim” dark blue, over white “neon” base. You get thinner lines if you apply a thin coat of the blue (or black) and wider if you make it thick. IMO thinner is better. Then, finish with a clear topcoat. I do not think that the other colors work at all—I tried most of them—because they are too pale. The black/ blue over white basecoat is dramatic though.


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