Wednesday, February 8, 2012

China Glaze Magnetix Collection Spring 2012 Swatches and Review

China Glaze has just released their own line of magnetic nail polish. It's called Magnetix and it consists of six magnet effect polishes plus a three-pattern magnet that you purchase separately (instead of being attached to the bottle). I'm really excited about this collection. I've been hoping that one of the major brands would hop on the magnetic bandwagon, and what better brand than China Glaze?


China Glaze Attraction. This is a very dark grey base with shiny silver chunky shimmer. I've never used a magnetic polish like this one before! Most of them tend to look smooth and blurry, like it would feel velvety if you touched it. This one is sparkly and crisp! Those little silver speckles are gorgeous and add extra contrast to the design.



China Glaze Cling On. This is a light, silvery olive green. Actually, it's more like the color of overcooked artichokes. When the magnet is applied, the design becomes very dark, much darker than I expected it to become based on the very light bottle color. This one was more sheer than the others and I needed to use three coats. I think that using the chevron pattern on this one is.... fitting.




China Glaze Drawn To You. A silvery medium purple based magnetic polish. When the magnet is applied, the color transforms and becomes even more beautiful. Little pink and red sparks appear near the design and balance well with the more silvery areas created by the magnet.



China Glaze Instant Chemistry. This is a very dark burgundy purple. It's the most opaque of all the shades, needing only one coat for complete coverage. But, despite being the most opaque, it's also the least dramatic. There's not as much contrast to this one so the pattern doesn't look very strong. I still like it, though. There's something really H.R. Giger-ish about this dark color combined with the chevron pattern. A little bit dark and ominous.



China Glaze Pull Me Close. This is a blue-toned grey based magnetic. The pattern turns very dark on this one as well- looks super dramatic against the light base!



China Glaze You Move Me. A soft brown magnetic. A little more red tone to it and it would look just like Tiger's Eye when you use the magnet on it.

The formula on these was excellent. Like most other magnetic polishes, the texture is thick and opaque. These were a little less thick than others I've used and slightly less opaque, but still applied perfectly and reacted well to the magnet. The brushes are normal, thin China Glaze brushes and I found that to help provide smooth, even application. Lots of other magnetic polishes have very thick brushes, but I prefer these thinner ones. I did two coats of all but Cling On, which needed three because I could see my nail through the pattern. Dry time on these is very fast.


Here's what the China Glaze magnet looks like. It's u-shaped and has a diagonal stripe pattern (left), a chevron pattern (center) and a star patten (right). Similar to the Nails Inc. magnet, it has a little rest for your cuticle that helps you position the design and helps prevent you from touching your nail to the magnet.

I found the magnet to be okay, but a little awkward to get used to. Figuring out how to hold it was the trickiest part. At first I kept it flat on the table and lowered my nail over it, but after using it a few times, I found it easier to pick up the magnet and hold it over each nail, using the little cuticle guard to help position it. It's not as easy to use as the Nails Inc. one because the cuticle guard isn't tall enough to completely prevent you from touching the magnet. It's also tricky to figure out how to center your nail on the magnet so that the design is in the right spot. The trick to getting the best position is to fully center your finger in the plastic guard, but position it back closer to your first knuckle instead of holding it right against your cuticle. The center of the pattern is in the center of the magnet, so try to visualize getting the middle of your nail right along the middle of the magnet when positioning.

The other thing that I noticed about this magnet is that it's not as strong as some of the other brands' magnets. The pattern doesn't form as quickly or as strongly, but it also doesn't pull as much polish up because of that. Instead of holding for 5-10 seconds like I would with the super-strong Nails Inc. magnet, I held it for 20 seconds minimum to be sure I got a strong design.

Once I got the hang of holding the magnet correctly, I didn't have any trouble with it. If you already have a few magnetic polishes (and you like their magnet), you don't have to buy the China Glaze magnet. The China Glaze Magnetix polishes will work with any other brand of magnet, like the LCN, the Layla, Lancôme, Nails Inc., or whichever magnetic polish you already have.

Quick bullet-point summary:

What I liked:

  • Gorgeous colors.
  • Perfect formula.
  • Perfect brushes and bottles.
  • These are full size (0.5 oz) bottles while many other brands contain half that amount (or even less)!
  • Good, strong contrast in most shades.
  • The magnet comes separately so if you already have a magnet you like, you don't have to buy it. Alternately, if you don't already have a magnet, you can buy this three-patterned one cheaper than any other brand, and you only have to buy one to get all three patterns.
  • Magnet has three designs instead of only one. Bonus!
  • Very fast dry time.
  • Best price on magnetic polish I've seen so far, especially since it contains twice as much product as most other magnetic polishes.

What I didn't like:

  • Flat magnet is more awkward to use than the kind that are attached to the bottle.
  • Magnet isn't as strong as the Nails Inc. magnet. Design takes longer to show up because of this.
  • If you have very curved nails, the pattern may not show up evenly across your nail. A stronger magnet would help the pattern develop more evenly.

But, overall, I absolutely loved these. The colors, the formula, the brushes and bottles, all awesome. The only true flaw is that magnet could be a little stronger and the design of it could be tweaked a little to make it easier to use, but I really had no major problem with the polish or the magnet. I applaud them for making these full sized bottles instead of minis and also for not charging an arm and a leg for them. Very happy with these. Considering purchasing backups.

(Attraction and Drawn To You were sent for review; the rest were purchased by me.)

77 comments:

  1. I thought I could pass on these..... Dammit! Why did you have to review them so nicely? ;)

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    1. Haha, sorry! If you already have a bunch of magnetic polishes, you don't *need* them, but if not... You might like to try at least one ;-)

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  2. Those are stunning, both the effects and the colours. But I would expect nothing less from China Glaze.

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    1. They rarely disappoint me. I have faith in China Glaze. lol

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  3. I am laughing my butt off at Cling On. They HAD to have meant us to think of that exact thing...

    Those look really gorgeous and I think I need at least two of them...

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    1. LOL, definitely! They knew that if they named it that, that geeks like me would buy it even if the color was ugly (which, luckily, it isn't!), haha!

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  4. Thanks for a very thorough review! I've been waiting for one on these for the longest time. I've already figured out that the China Glaze magnetic polishes are the best value for price but I've heard bad reviews about the magnet. Just to clarify, did you do two coats (working one nail at a time) and then used the magnet to do the design, also holding it in place for longer?

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    1. You're welcome! This is how I used it: I did one coat on each nail, all ten nails at once, just like a normal manicure. But for my second coat, I applied it and immediately used the magnet, held for 20-ish seconds, one nail at a time.

      The magnet isn't the best I've used, but it's not the worst, either. It's easier to use, cheaper and slightly stronger than the LCN magnet, but not as easy or as strong as the Nails Inc. magnet or the Layla magnet. From my experience, Lancôme and Nails Inc. have the best magnets!

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  5. I really wanted a star magnet, so I'm willing to get their magnet just for that design. I've read that the star works better than a more expensive one from a different brand.

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    1. The China Glaze star pattern works better than the LCN but not as good as the Lancôme :) The China Glaze one needs to be held in place longer for the star than the other two patterns, but I thought it was decent!

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    2. Of course the shape I want most takes the most effort. How am I going to keep up my laziness???

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  6. I went to my nail place to buy the new OPI collection and I was surprised to see this in there! I had no idea CG had magnetic nail polish coming out...I just bought mine today! I was just going to put it on right now and then I saw this post...how convenient!

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    1. Yay, awesome! Which one did you get- or did you get all of them?

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    2. I purchased Pull Me Close because I like blue a lot :) I think I will get Cling On next! Btw, I was having problems getting the starburst pattern to show on mine, I was wondering if cleaning the magnet with nail polish remover would ruin it? Because I messed up on my very first nail but got the starburst pattern and so I cleaned my magnet but after that every other nail didn't turn out the same :(

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  7. Thanks for the added tips Scrangie! I ordered Instant Chemistry and it should be delivered today. Hmmm is it better to have a stronger magnet and possibly have your polish sucked up or have a weaker magnet but hold it on the design longer? I bought the CHG magnet too just for the star design! The Icing/Claire's magnetics have a wavy design.

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    1. You're welcome! I prefer the stronger magnet because it's faster and gives a more even design on my curved nails. If you do thin coats and are *really* careful to hold your nail level, it won't suck up globs of polish. The weaker magnet is a little more forgiving but requires more patience. Both work fine for me, though!

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  8. I haven't really been interested in magnetic polishes before but these are really beautiful! The way the magnet design brings out the different layers of the polish is beautiful!

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    1. You have to see one in real life at least once, they're SO interesting!

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  9. After trying out the magnetic polishes I find them very cool though I'm not too keen on the China Glaze magnet from what reviews I've read I like the colours they put out with this line. I may have to give in and pick up a couple of these in the near future.

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    1. Now I'm going to have to go check some other reviews- everyone's saying they had trouble with the magnet! I thought it was fine, I just had to hold it longer than I normally would because it was weaker. :(

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  10. I really regret having been so quick to purchase mine, especially with a drugstore version showing up shortly afterwards. I'm not impressed by the colors and my magnet was a pain to deal with. I thought it was just that my application skills were bad, but I've read other blogs where they agree. I'm glad that other people had a better experience, though.

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    1. Aw, I'm sorry you don't like yours :(

      I haven't read any other reviews, but personally I loved these colors and I didn't have a hard time with the magnet other than it being weird to hold and weaker than I expected. Worked fine to make the designs, I just had to hold it longer compared to other brands I've used. I actually really love these ones.

      Drugstore version, you say? Looks like I have to go shopping tonight! What brand are they? I need to check them out!

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    2. My nail supply place had all 6 colors and none of them was super impressive to me. I settled on Instant Chemistry, and ended up paying $10 for the polish and magnet. Since I'm sure I'll only wear it really occasionally and only bought it because I've longed for an affordable version of the magnetic effect, I really regret it. (Part of that is later seeing the Icing versions, which I think are better colors.)

      The Polishaholic is the where I read a major review about the CG Magnetix line. The drug store brand is called Pretty Woman and is $8. The Nouveau Cheap blog alerted me to its existence and a few days later did a review of one of the colors.

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  11. LOL at the pic of Gowron and the chevron pattern for ClingOn!!
    Seriously these are really pretty, I think I'll have to get one or two!! Thanks for the swatches, lovely as always!!

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    1. Hehehe I had to do it! :D Thank you!

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  12. That chevron pattern TOTALLY looks like a Klingon forehead! ROFL!! Great pictures! I'm still on the fence about magnetic polishes... it seems like a lot of work. I love that starburst design, tho! Reminds me of the reflection from star sapphires and rubies.

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    1. Haha thank you :) Yeah, no denying it, it *is* a lot of work for a manicure... but totally worth every extra minute spent doing it! Nothing like a magnetic polish. And hey, faster and easier than Konad!

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  13. you have the best swatches ive seen of these so far! have you checked out the rite aid magnetix? they are awesome!

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    1. Ooh, no, I haven't seen them! We don't have Rite Aid here :(

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  14. I was doing my normal browsing of your lovely blog, and was like, "Why is there a picture of Gowron?" Then I saw the name of the polish, and your choice of magnet effect, and just died! :D Thank you for combining my love of nail polish and Star Trek!

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    1. I'll look around this weekend and see if I can get a bottle. Only one-I wanna try it but am not uber-obsessed with owning every colour as I usually am with ChG's Collections. Love you you stated the pro's and con's honestly so we as readers could decide if it was worth the purchase, however-thanks! : )

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    2. Unknown, haha, you're welcome! Glad to hear we have similar tastes hehe!

      Erin, Thank you! :D

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  15. Ooh wow, when I heard China Glaze was coming out with some I nearly passed out with excitement, now I know I have to get my hands on them!! Your swatches are great!

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  16. I died with that little sci fi connection. I spat out my drink on my computer screen. LOLOLOL!

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  17. I love Instant Chemistry because it's so dark! I will be getting a couple of these for sure. However, I've noticed a lack of red magnetic polishes of the brands out there. Even at Ulta, the Layla display had similar colors to the ChG but had a flyer in the back with red which they don't carry! Where is the love for red? Purple/pinks are the closest I've seen. :(

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    1. I'm wearing it right now, it's so gorgeous! It looks a little better with the stripe pattern than it did with the chevron, but still a little week. The color of it is so dark and rich though, looks good even without the magnet.

      And I hear you on the red! Would love to see a rich vampy red magnetic, or even a bright candy red one, if that's even possible!

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  18. Where did you purchase yours at? I've got access to license only cosmetic stores and they still don't have them in stock. I'd love to get my hands on them!

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  19. LOL I'm so glad I'm not the only Star Trek nerd around here. It's pretty rare for someone my age (21), but I'm told it adds to my charm.

    Anyways I LOVE some of these polishes. I'll have to keep an eye out at my local Chatters (Canadians take note, get your China Glaze at Chatters!) for this collection!

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    1. Well, you're in good company here :D

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  20. Yay!
    I'm a total ChG fan girl and I've been wanting to try magnetics forever. The only other review I've read on these so far was less than stellar, so THANK YOU for restoring my faith in my favourite polish brand. Great review, as always

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    1. Thanks! I personally had a good experience with these, but I guess not everything will work for everyone!

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  21. wow! best swatches i've seen of these.. you worked that magnet!!! they all look gorgeous.

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  22. I read your blog religiously but this is my first time posting. With the magnetic polish do you use the magnet after each layer or do you wait until you have the final coat on? I've wanted to try it for a long time but I couldn't get myself to pay that much for a bottle so this seems like a great addition to add to my collection. Everyone that comes to my house freaks out at my nail polish collection on the shelf I made but I only have about 45 polishes. I'm sure they'd die if they ever got a look at your collection. Please keep posting because your loyal fans LOVE you! You're the most honest nail polish blog I've ever read and know if you recommend something I won't be disappointed. Thanks for all the blogging!

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    1. Well hey Lyndsey, thank you for commenting! :D

      With the magnetic polish, you only use the magnet once on each nail. You'll do one or two coats (depending on how opaque it is) on each nail just like you'd paint your nails normally, but then when you do your last coat, you do each nail one at a time, painting and then holding it near the magnet, until each nail is finished. It takes a while, but I think it's worth the extra effort!

      And thank you sooo much for the awesome compliment!

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  23. I read your blog religiously but this is my first time posting. With the magnetic polish do you use the magnet after each layer or do you wait until you have the final coat on? I've wanted to try it for a long time but I couldn't get myself to pay that much for a bottle so this seems like a great addition to add to my collection. Everyone that comes to my house freaks out at my nail polish collection on the shelf I made but I only have about 45 polishes. I'm sure they'd die if they ever got a look at your collection. Please keep posting because your loyal fans LOVE you! You're the most honest nail polish blog I've ever read and know if you recommend something I won't be disappointed. Thanks for all the blogging!

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  24. Do you NEED to buy the magnet?

    :( It's sold out on h2t !!!!!!!

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    1. Yep, magnetic polishes won't work without a magnet. It doesn't have to be this magnet, you can use any brand's magnet, but this one is the least expensive one I've seen so far.

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  25. Great swatches but ROFL @ Gowron! Girl, you rock.

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  26. Cling-on should totally have been named Klingon, and the collection could have been entirely Star Trek themed. Pull Me Close could have been Mind Meld (Spock did wear blue), Attraction could have been Warpdrive, Scotty!
    ..../nerding
    Awesome review!

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    1. I would die. That would be so freakin awesome!

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  27. Awesome review, Scrangie! I just ordered Pull Me Close and Drawn To You from Head2Toe Beauty but they're sold out of the magnet. I'm debating purchasing it on Ebay, but I'm undecided. I want it for the star and chevron designs. I have three of the Rite Aid magnetics which are awesome. They each come with two magnets and the formula is great. I'm wondering how difficult it is to use the China Glaze magnet. I might get it anyway because it's pretty cheap on Ebay.

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    1. It's not difficult, just a little awkward since it's so big and flat. Once I used it about three times, I got the hang of it and now I can do all ten nails without messing them up :)

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  28. Great swatches! I'm so happy to see a seperate magnet instead of one on the bottle! Thanks for posting

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  29. Wow! This is the first time I've seen the pattern come through so strongly of all the swatches I've seen. Looks great!

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    1. Just gotta hold it a little longer since it's a weaker magnet, but once you do that, they look pretty great!

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  30. These look so gorgeous and I love the effect...but I just think I would probably screw it up. I saw the girls at Ulta playing with the Layla ones and they had such a hard time with it that I decided not to get any.

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    1. It seems more complicated than it is- once you do it a couple times, you really get a feel for how to hold it to get the clearest design. As long as you have the right amount of polish on the last coat and don't move or wiggle your nail when using the magnet, it'll come out really nice and clear.

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  31. I love this! I want to try it... but I'll have to go with a different brand. My ex was obsessed with CG... so I have a (now, not so secret) hate toward it. :)

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    1. Hahaha! I know exactly what you mean. Try Nails Inc. Houses of Parliament! It's a gorgeous color and the magnet rocks.

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  32. I wonder if the magnetic polishes would work with a non-magnetic polish base coat. I'd love to see OPI's OPI Ink. under China Glaze's Attraction using the star pattern. Would the base color show up in the star pattern only? Oooooh, I can't wait for my magnetic polishes to arrive (ordered them from 8ty8beauty earlier this week). Thanks so much for your awesome swatches! :)

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    1. Yes, it definitely will! I do that a lot. It doesn't always show through, though. Only with the more sheer magnetic colors :(

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  33. I think I might pick up Attraction and Pull Me Close. I don't own any magnetic polishes, so I pretty excited to buy them. Did you hear about CC releasing a magnetic line also? From the look of the likely inaccurate bottle pictures online, I don't think I'll be buying any of those- yet. As always, thank you Scrangie for taking the time to offer these amazing swatches to us all <3

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  34. I think I might pick up Attraction and Pull Me Close. I don't own any magnetic polishes, so I pretty excited to buy them. Did you hear about CC releasing a magnetic line also? From the look of the likely inaccurate bottle pictures online, I don't think I'll be buying any of those- yet. As always, thank you Scrangie for taking the time to offer these amazing swatches to us all <3

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  35. Hi, great swatches (as usual)! =D

    Any chances of doing swatches for China Glaze Glitter Crackle collection?

    Thank you.

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    1. Thank you!

      I didn't know they were doing a glitter crackle collection! As soon as I can get the polishes, I'll do swatches, though!

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  36. I love the effect as well, but my magnet seems to stop working! I don't know if it's because I have touched down with it on a nail (many times) and had to wipe it clean with remover, but it seems to not work at all anymore. Any suggestions??

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  37. I love the effect as well, you did a great job on them! My magnet seems to not work at all anymore. With trying to get close, I touched down many times, forcing me to wipe with remover. Could that have wrecked the magnet? Any thoughts or suggestions??

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    1. Thank you!

      Hmm... I have not experienced that! I also seem to touch my nail with it at least once every time I use it, and I've wiped mine down with remover a lot, but it still works the same. I wonder what could have caused it?

      Is it perhaps the polish and not the magnet? If you haven't shaken it in a while, it's possible that the magnetic iron in the polish has settled to the bottom so you get less of it on the nail and the result is a weaker magnetic effect. Just one alternate theory- try shaking the polish for a minute or two and try again, maybe it will help?

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