If you’re like me and have a large nail polish collection, you’ll inevitably have several bottles of polish that you haven’t used in such a long time that the color has separated from the formula. Some people think that at this point, you have to throw out the bottle, although sometimes you can fix the problem by shaking the bottle for minutes on end. But what if I told you that there is a product you can buy that will save you the hassle of all that?
Stainless steel mixing balls to the rescue!
I fondly remember my mom shaking a bottle of nail polish in preparation to do her nails and hearing the metal balls inside the container go clickety-clack against the glass. Some polishes come with these mixing beads already, but not every bottle has them, and therein lies the problem of getting the formula back to normal again once the polish separates.
These little ball bearings are such a time saver because adding one ball to a bottle will mix the polish to its original consistency within a minute, and they are cheap, too. You can find the link for the product at the end of this post, but $2.90 will get you 20 of these balls.
They arrive in a little zip-sealed bag from the merchant.
The balls are fairly small. The website claims that they are 5 mm, but they are more like 4 mm in diameter. They do have some weight to them so that they can cut through viscous nail polish easily. It should be noted that they aren’t perfectly round and have scratches on them and have more of a multi-faceted surface, but they perform the job they need to do just fine.
Glitter polishes tend to settle and separate more than other ones because of the weight of the glitter being heavier than the polish formula, so it wasn’t hard to find a bottle that needed mixing. I tested the blending capabilities out by putting a ball into Meet Me At the Disco by Sephora by OPI below.
Left: Separated polish before mixing. I actually shook the bottle a little before taking the photo to listen if there was a ball inside already from the manufacturer (there wasn’t), but you can see that the polish is still pretty separated. Right: After adding one mixing ball to the bottle and shaking it for less than a minute, the polish looks evenly blended.
I also had a bottle of crackle polish from Sally Hansen in Antiqued Gold from when it first became popular years ago. I thought this bottle would definitely have to be tossed- the pigment would hardly move even when the bottle was inverted, and I had tried to shake it back to normal before without any luck. But lo and behold, I added just one of the mixing beads to the bottle, shook it for under a minute, and everything returned to normal!
Behold, the magic of ball bearings! The top photos are what the polish looked like originally, and the bottom photos look like I bought a brand new bottle from the store, but all I did was shake the bottle after the addition of a single bead. If you’re wondering about the difference in the caps, I couldn’t open the bottle because the crackle design was shrink wrapped around the handle so that the plastic overlay would turn instead of opening the bottle, so I cut the film off.
I wasn’t so sure that the formula would be any good even after mixing it, but it still crackles after all these years! Score!
Close up view of my nail with the freshly reinvigorated bottle of Antiqued Gold crackle polish by Sally Hansen.
I’m not into creating my own polish colors, but adding a ball to a bottle of clear coat and adding different kinds/concentrations of glitter to it would make for a fun DIY project.
Also, if your polish has become too thick, you can add a few drops of nail polish thinner to it along with a bead and kick the formula back into usable condition again.
It’s safe to say that I highly recommend these little metal balls. I never thought I would get such joy from such a little purchase! I would add one or two to all of my bottles of polish, but I would need a few hundred more! They are definitely worth the price, so why not buy a pack and try them out?
Diamond rating: ♦♦♦♦♦ (5/5)
If you are interested in purchasing these stainless steel polish mixing balls (retail price is $2.90 USD for 20), the link for the item is shown below. Using code RSSPX31 will get you 10% off your order, and Born Pretty Store offers free worldwide shipping. Happy polishing!