Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Primark Nail Art Pens

On Monday I braved the bank holiday crowds and headed to Primark to pick up some nail art pens. I'd read some good reviews of the P.S. Love nail art pens so I had to try them for myself.

There are two types of nail art pen available in Primark. The P.S. Love sets which cost £2 for a pack of three and are available in a Silver/Gold/Turquoise pack, which I bought, and a Black/White/Pink pack, which had all sold out in my local store. Primark also has some packs containing two slightly smaller nail art pens with a tube of matching rhinestones attached to the base of each one, also for £2. These nail art pens are not P.S. Love and are labelled Nail Art Get Creative. They were only available in a White/Red pack (other colours may be available). I'd not read any reviews of these pens but I thought I'd give them a try.

The lids and nibs of the pens are identical for the two types of nail art pen, consisting of a unscrewable striping brush section and above that a push-fit lid covering a thin metal nib. The pen tubes are squeezy, so be careful not to squeeze them as you remove the pen lids (which are tight fitting) otherwise you'll squirt polish everywhere. It is also important that when you are removing and replacing the lids you keep them directly in line with the nib to avoid bending the thin metal. You use the pens by gently squeezing the tube as you draw. The harder you squeeze, the thicker and blobbier the line you draw will be. There is no need to press the nib onto the surface of your nail as you would with a marker pen (you'd probably damage them that way), just gently touch the surface with the nib. As you can see in the photo below there is a little imperfection in the plastic moulding near the nib on some of the pens, but this doesn't affect the way they work at all.

The P.S. Love nail art pens are really excellent, just as the reviews I'd read claimed. The turquoise polish is totally opaque even over black, and the gold and silver are almost as opaque. The P.S. Love pens have exactly the right consistency to draw neat, thin lines and are a pleasure to use. It took me a while to get the hang of it, but by applying just a tiny bit of pressure you can draw lines almost as thin as a fineliner pen.

The Nail Art Get Creative pens contain slightly less polish and the formula is not nearly as good as the P.S. Love pens. The polish is very thin and runny which means it is harder to control the flow and the nibs splutter regularly, spraying flecks of polish and creating bubbles. Because the formula is so thin it also dissolves your base polish slightly which can muddy the colour of your lines. The white pen is significantly better than the red pen, and although it is difficult to use it is quite opaque over black. The red pen is not opaque at all and will only be useful over bases that are lighter than it, and it is so runny that it is almost impossible to draw neatly or do any detailed work with it. I imagine I will get some use out of the white pen (albeit while swearing at how difficult to use it is), but I probably won't be using the red pen again. I might try refilling the tube of the red pen with a more opaque polish from my collection to see how that works. At least these pens came with lots of sparkly red and iridescent silver rhinestones I suppose!

The picture below shows the lines that the different pens draw. I'm afraid it's not the neatest nail art but I was still getting used to squeezing the pen as I was drawing.

So, my verdict is buy the P.S. Love nail art pens! They are fantastic and a very low price for the quality you get. I know I'll be picking up the Black/White/Pink set when they get more in stock. I wouldn't bother with the Nail Art Get Creative pens, they will only disappoint.


  1. These look great! I saw these in Primark a couple of weeks ago but didn't buy them! :/ I definitely think I'll have to pick up the P.S. Love pens! The turquoise one is such a nice colour! They're such a good price too! :)

    1. It took me ages to decide to buy the P.S. Love pens because I assumed that at that price they'd be terrible. It was only when I kept seeing good reviews that I picked them up and now I'm glad I did!

  2. I brought a Black, White and Pink nail art pen set from the P.S. Love Range. Both the White and Black were great but the Pink doesn't work from the nib and also I had to cut down the brush as it had random sticky out bits. But saying that they work fine. Going to try and find the other colours of them now, they didn't have them when I went shopping.

    What A Little Pickle

    1. I suppose for the price it's not a disaster if one of the pens doesn't work properly. So far I've been impressed with the quality of all the P.S. Love nail polishes I've tried, except the smell. They are stinky stinky polishes.