[Review] ORLY – breathable

Hello everyone,

today I would like to introduce to you the new breathable polishes from ORLY.

I will tell you all about the formula, colors and my honest opinion in comparison to the Color Therapy™ polishes, which I talked about in this post.


picture rights reserved by ORLY Germany


In this post:

  • introduction to the ORLY breathable collection
  • overview of the available polishes
  • swatches of the 5 polishes I tried
  • conclusion: what I think
  • comparison with the Sally Hansen Color Therapy™ line

Disclaimer: the following products were sponsored by ORLY Germany, it does not affect my opinion though


The breathable polishes from ORLY are available in 18 beautiful shades (USA and Germany).

They are 10-free and have a permeable formula which allows better adhesion and less chipping. They not only look good, but also care for your nails without the need for a base coat. They contain argan oil, pro-vitamin B5, and vitamin C. Thanks to the no-chip formula you also don’t need a top coat.



The application is the same as with the Sally Hansen Color Therapy polishes. Simply add one coat of polish to clean, dry, nails and allow it to dry for 2-3 minutes. After that apply a second coat and let the nails dry thoroughly. As I said above, you do not have to use a base or top coat, but you could use the ORLY treatment & shine top coat.

Each polish is available for around 9$ / 12,50 €. In the USA you can buy them at their official website, ULTA, KOHL’s, jcp Salon and Sally Beauty. In Germany they are available directly from ORLY Germany.

Below I created an overview of all the currently available shades. I really like that they came out with a nice collection of essential base colors. So far there is only one shimmer polish, all others are cremes.

I imagine these would be perfect for all kinds of skin tones, especially for french tips or a simple and classic manicure all over the nail.



I was lucky enough to test out five shades, which I was able to pick myself. When I saw the press pictures I was very curious if the red or purple would stain the nails, which is why I picked them together with a few others.




left to right: Pick-Me-Up, Power Packed, Stronger Than Ever, Nourishing Nude, The Antidote


Above you can see 2 coats of each color on nail tips. When I swatched them and applied them on the nails I recognized no big difference. The cremes applied really nice and evenly. They were opaque in two thin coats. The shimmer polish, Stronger Than Ever, is much thinner in consistency but still applied nicely. Here you need two to three coats, depending how opaque you want the result. I also realised that the dry time is very good. They were ready for a second coat after only 2-3 minutes and dry to the touch about 10 minutes later. Fully dried after the usual 20-30 minutes I think.

Below you can see all polishes applied to the nails in two thin coats.


Nourishing Nude

Nourishing Nude is a very pretty beige nude, prefect for my pale skin. I will wear the heck out of it if I don’t have enough time for fancy nail art or when my nails are thin and weak.



Power Packed

Power Packed is a gorgeous blue/grey polish, just my cup of tea. I love these kinds of pigeon blue polishes.




Pick-Me-Up is a lovely deep plum/purple polish. Usually colors like these tend to stain the natural nails if you don’t use a base coat, but I am happy to say that this one does not do that. I also feel like it is difficult for most companies to create nice purple polishes that are opaque in two coats. This certainly is and I think it really compliments my pale skin, so I will wear this often as well.



Stronger Than Ever

Stronger Than Ever is a stunning ruby-red polish with gold shimmer and was also one of the polishes I was worried about staining or not being opaque enough. Lucky I was proven wrong, because even if it seems quite sheer after one coat, the second one does the trick and creates a nice layer of red and shimmer on the nails. Again, no staining which makes me very happy.



The Antidote

Spoiler: The Antidote turned out to be my favorite shade. It is such an amazing beautiful deep wine red polish and I think within my collection of around 1000 polishes I have nothing alike. Usually these kinds of deep reds will mostly stain your nails, but I don’t know how ORLY did it, this one also does not do that.

I also tried a little bit of gradient with it, using Nourishing Nude and The Antidote. As you can see they worked very well and I think because of the consistency you are able to stamp with it as well.



Conslusion: what I think

I am very happy with these breathable polishes. If the whole line turns out to be like these, I would love to see some blues as well. Maybe some more shimmers in different colors too. I think the ORLY breathable line is a great collection for people who either don’t have the time nor the passion for the whole base coat, polish, top coat and maybe nail art routine. They are easy to handle, apply and dry in decent time.

Disclaimer: Durability is always a matter of application, nail condition and what you do in daily life. If your nails are thin and weak and you soak them in dish water all day, the polish won’t last as long as the advertise it to last. My polish in general last a couple of days to a week. Also always depending how fast I wanna change me :)
That’s why I will never promise that a certain polish works the same for everyone.

AND I love the new wide brush and I would love it if ORLY would keep the new brush for all their polishes, since I personally find they make applying polish evenly so much easier.


Comparison with the Sally Hansen Color Therapy™ line:

Like I said, I will always tell you my honest opinion, no matter if products were sponsored or not.

I liked both lines, but I liked the ORLY breathable polishes a bit better. It is difficult to judge by only two polishes from Sally Hansen compared to 5 from ORLY, but if I take application, handling, opacity and dry time into consideration the ORLY breathable polishes performed a bit better for me. Especially doing a gradient I felt the difference.

I am not saying that the Sally Hansen Color Therapy™ polishes aren’t good, they are and I liked them, I just like the ORLY breathable polishes a little bit better.


Which ones are your favorite?

Like I said above, The Antidote is my favorite so far. I also love the blue grey of Power Packed and Pick Me Up. Honestly, I like most of the colors that are available so far, so I think I will have to get my hands on a couple more.

I hope this post was helpful. Did you try these yet? Tell me about your experiences.


Have a great evening

 photo Mara2.jpg



Website USADE
Facebook USA | DE
Instagram USADE

2 thoughts on “[Review] ORLY – breathable

  1. Had a pedicure this morning using Orly Breathable which I purchased the other day. The nail tech used two coats and my toes looked great. I think the color I used was Love My Nails. My problem was the polish won’t dry, very tacky after 20 minutes under the dryer. The nail tech ended up putting a top coat on them so they would dry, which completely changed the reason why I chose to use a breathable product. My nails get dry and white when I use an regular polish, even the ones I puchased from a health food store. Very disappointed with my first experience using Orly Breathable nail polish. I thought I found the solution I’ve been looking for..

    • Thank you for your comment. I am sorry you made this exprience. I guess this is a good example for the fact that not all products work the same for different people. Like I said, the breathable line works very well for me and I don’t have issues with the drying time. I hope you will find other products that work better for you.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s