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Guide To Australian Indie Nail Polish

04/09/2019

I frequently get asked about what I think the best nail polish brands are. I always tell people to try Australian indie nail polishes as they are great quality and are small businesses often run by one person, so they need the money more than the big companies do. They are all cruelty free and the majority are vegan friendly, or have vegan items available. The thing I like best about indies is that the polish is unique, you will never find the glitters, holos and glass flecks of indies in mainstream polishes – plus you can also get amazing cremes and shimmers from indie brands too. People often ask me where to find indie polishes, so I am writing a list of Aussie indie nail polish brands that are currently open. That way you will always have a list to refer to when you want to try a new indie polish brand.

Australian Indie Nail Polish Brands
Australian Indie Nail Polish Brands

Before I get into the list, I just wanted to touch on some definitions. The main nail polish brands that you will know about are mainstream brands. Mainstream brands are well known, mass produced, and widely available in stores and online. Some cruelty free mainstream brands include China Glaze, Zoya, Color Club, ORLY, Barry M, Butter London, Nubar and Ulta3. Plus there are cruelty free mainstream cosmetic brands that have a nail polish line like Australis, Natio, Face Of Australia, ELF and Pacifica. Some mainstream brands that aren’t cruelty free include OPI, Essie, Sally Hansen and Sinful Colors, plus cosmetic companies like Revlon, L’Oreal, Maybelline, Wet N Wild Beauty, Rimmel etc. Then there are much smaller brands that aren’t as well known or as widely available, and they are called boutique brands. Some Australian boutique brands include Kester Black, Picture Polish, I Scream Nails, Furless, and Sea Siren Cosmetics, as well as the cosmetic brands Hanami Cosmetics and Ere Perez Cosmetics (all cruelty free). Then you have indie polish brands which are small family owned businesses that pride themselves on having a close relationship with their customers. You will find indies very active on social media and always connecting with customers and asking for their opinions and input. Many indies are handmade and the nail polish is mixed in very small batches. However, there is a brand called Pretty Serious that have only lab made polishes but many in the Aussie indie polish community still count this brand as an indie as they treat their customers with the same care that indies do, as opposed to boutique brands that have less interaction with their customer base. There is one brand that I am unsure of where to place, called Joss, as it is manufactured by the company that supplies many of the nail polish making supplies to Australian Indie brands. You can check out their website – beautyworld.com.au (previously nailsuperstore.com.au) to see the Joss nail polish range and their variety of nail polish making supplies. 

Aussie Indie Nail Polishes
Aussie Indie Nail Polishes

Indie polishes are mainly available online, with each brand having their own individual website. Some indies do the occasional craft market and there are stockists that stock multiple indie brands, like the Femme Fatale Cosmetics website. I have tried most of these indie brands, and therefore know that they are making good quality products. I’ll leave a note next to the brands I haven’t tried yet. Each brand has their own style, so check each website, look on social media and find blog reviews so that you can see the range of amazing products available from each brand. I have had this list running for a long time now, and many of the brands originally on the list have closed down, I have left them on the list, but crossed out, so that you can look up what they once made – you might be able to find some of their products in destashes online. Below you will find each brand listed in alphabetical order with each website so you can get to them easily. Some brands have multiple websites for different locations, and I have linked some to their Facebook fan group if they have one. Aussie Indie Polish fan groups are a great place to interact with the owner of the brand and other fans of the brand. I have also included stamping polish and stamping plates for those of you interested in nail art. Some brands are 3 free and some are 5 free (or more), and some brands have certain vegan products with other brands being all vegan, you will need to check for the details on each individual website.

Australian Indie Nail Polish Brands

Aree Cosmetics – areecosmetics.com – haven’t tried

Bella Bella Nail Couture – bellabellenailcouture.bigcartel.com 

Bettie Pain Polish – bettiepain.com.au

Celestial Cosmetics – celestialcosmetics.com.au – now closed

Emily de Molly – emilydemolly.com.au (Aus site) emilydemolly.com (US site) – Emily de Molly Facebook Fan Group 

Femme Fatale Cosmetics – femmefatalecosmetics.com.auFemma Fatale Fiends Facebook Group 

Glam Polish – glampolish.com.auGlam Polish Fans Facebook Group

Grace-Full Nail Polish – gracefullnailpolish.com.au (Aus site) gracefullnailpolish.com (US site) – Grace-full Nail Polish Facebook Fan Group

Hit The Bottle Polishes – hitthebottlepolishes.com.auHit The Bottle Indie Polish Facebook Group 

Lilypad Lacquer – lilypadlacquer.com

MckFresh Nail Attire –mckfresh.shop  – Mckfeshies Facebook Group – on hiatus

Miss Priss Polish – missprisspolish.com 

Moonstone Nail Polish – moonstonenailpolish.com – now closed

Powder Perfect – powderperfect.com.au – now closed

Pretty Serious Cosmetics – pretty-serious.com (Aus site) pretty-serious.us (US site) – returning soon

Sayuri Nail Lacquer – sayurinaillacquer.com – closing soon

Slay Me Beauty (previously SM Nail Polish) – etsy.com/au/shop/SlayMeBeauty – haven’t tried

Shades Of Phoenix – shadesofphoenix.indiemade.com – now closed


Stamping Polish

Emily de Molly – emilydemolly.com.au (Aus site) emilydemolly.com (US site) – Emily de Molly Facebook Fan Group

Hit The Bottle Polishes – hitthebottlepolishes.com.auHit The Bottle Indie Polish Facebook Group 


Stamping Plates


Hit The Bottle Polishes – hitthebottlepolishes.com.auHit The Bottle Indie Polish Facebook Group 

Messy Mansion – messymansion.com.auMessy Mansion Nail Art Stamping Chatter House Facebook Group 


I will try to update this list with new brands and any brands that become active again.

Australian Indie Stamping Nail Polish and Stamping Plates
Australian Indie Stamping Nail Polish and Stamping Plates

I have been too sick to paint my nails for some time now, but I hope to get well enough to do it again soon. You can see my previous nail polish posts by checking out my nails blog post archive. If you want to get my new blog posts sent to your inbox, then sign up to my email list. You can also join the Facebook group called The Australian Indie Polish Appreciation Society to connect with the brands and other Aussie indie nail polish fans. I haven’t tried all the aussie indie polish brands there are out there, so leave a comment if I have missed any active Aussie indie brands that you love. Which brand will you be trying next?

*originally posted October 2016, updated September 2019

Love, Alinta

3 Comments

  • Barbara s Friedman 31/01/2017 at 3:59 am

    I will be traveling to Australia in April and In The US I use a nail dip that hardens like a gel coat without needing lights and last weeks. Is there anything similar in Australia? Do they do acrylics and gels is Australia?

  • Meme 25/06/2017 at 4:40 pm

    Crap list

  • Verena 12/08/2018 at 10:48 am

    Thank you for this list. Just what I have been looking for. I have just bought 2 I scream Nails polishes, but have yet to try them. There is a new polish brand out called RAWW. I have a polish from them and it is very nice. Good formula.

  • Leave a Reply

    Alinta Hello

    I’m Alinta, an animal lover who writes reviews about cruelty free products as a distraction from my chronic illnesses. Read more…

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