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The Nail Salon Industry: Exploring Leading Brands and Their Market Dominance

Updated: Jun 12, 2023

O.P.I., the ubiquitous nail polish brand known for its tongue-in-cheek color names, those nail shades called I'm Sooo Swamped! and Teal the Cows Come Home are all her.

In recent years, the nail salon industry has witnessed remarkable growth, driven by the increasing demand for nail care and creativity. This flourishing industry offers a diverse range of products and services, with several brands and companies vying for market dominance. In this blog post, we will explore some of the prominent players in the nail salon industry, including OPI, Gelish, Kiara Sky, CND Shellac, and Seche, and discuss how they differentiate themselves to stand out in the market.


OPI is a name that has become synonymous with excellence in the nail salon industry. Since its inception in 1981, OPI has been a trailblazer, consistently setting the bar high with its high-quality products and trend-setting nail lacquers.

One of the key factors that sets OPI apart is its extensive range of nail lacquer colors. The brand offers an impressive spectrum of shades, from classic neutrals to bold and vibrant hues, catering to every style and occasion. OPI is renowned for its ability to capture the latest fashion trends and translate them into stunning nail colors. This commitment to staying ahead of the curve ensures that customers can always find the perfect shade to complement their individual style.

In addition to its vast color selection, OPI is known for its exceptional formula and durability. OPI nail lacquers are formulated to deliver a smooth and even application, resulting in a flawless finish. The high-quality formula ensures that the nail polish resists chipping, providing longer-lasting wear compared to many other brands. OPI's dedication to quality has made it a trusted choice among both professionals and individuals seeking salon-quality manicures.

OPI's reputation extends beyond its regular nail lacquers. The brand has also made a mark in the industry with its gel polishes, known as OPI GelColor. The GelColor line offers the same extensive color range as the regular nail lacquers, but with the added benefits of long-lasting wear and a high-gloss shine. OPI GelColor manicures can last up to two weeks without chipping, providing customers with extended wear and minimal maintenance.

Another aspect that sets OPI apart is its collaborations with celebrities, designers, and influencers. These partnerships have resulted in numerous limited-edition collections that showcase unique and captivating colors. Collaborations with well-known figures in the fashion and entertainment industry have added a touch of glamour to the brand and made OPI a sought-after choice for those looking to stay on-trend.

OPI's commitment to professional nail care also extends to its range of nail treatments and care products. The brand offers a comprehensive selection of products designed to strengthen and nourish nails, ensuring optimal nail health. From base coats to cuticle oils, OPI provides solutions to address various nail concerns and promote overall nail well-being.

With its rich history, exceptional color range, quality formulas, and commitment to professional nail care, OPI continues to dominate the nail salon industry. The brand's constant innovation and ability to capture the essence of current fashion trends make it a staple in both professional salons and personal nail care routines.

Including OPI in the discussion emphasizes the brand's legacy and its continued relevance as a leader in the nail salon industry. From timeless classics to cutting-edge collections, OPI consistently delivers high-quality nail lacquers that inspire creativity and help individuals express their personal style.


Gelish has made a significant impact on the nail salon industry since its introduction in 2009. As one of the pioneers of gel nail polish, Gelish has become synonymous with long-lasting, chip-resistant manicures that deliver a salon-quality finish.

The key distinguishing feature of Gelish is its formulation, designed to provide superior durability and extended wear. This gel polish system requires curing under a UV or LED lamp, resulting in a long-lasting and glossy finish that can last up to three weeks without chipping. Gelish's commitment to quality ensures that customers can enjoy flawless, chip-free nails for an extended period, making it a popular choice for those seeking durable and low-maintenance manicures.

One of the strengths of Gelish is its extensive color range. The brand offers a vast selection of shades, from subtle neutrals to bold and vibrant hues, allowing customers to express their personal style and follow the latest nail trends. Gelish regularly releases new collections to keep up with evolving fashion and customer preferences, ensuring that there is always something fresh and exciting for nail enthusiasts to choose from.

In addition to a wide color palette, Gelish also provides various finishes and effects, such as glitters, shimmers, and magnetic designs. This versatility allows individuals to experiment with different looks and create intricate nail art designs, making Gelish a favorite among both professionals and DIY enthusiasts who enjoy expressing their creativity.

Gelish has also established a reputation for its user-friendly application process. The polish applies smoothly and evenly, allowing for precise and flawless manicures. The brand's commitment to innovation is evident in its development of advanced formulas that minimize drying time and improve overall performance, making Gelish a convenient choice for busy individuals who desire beautiful nails without the wait.

Another advantage of Gelish is its compatibility with other gel systems. This versatility allows nail technicians to combine Gelish with other gel products to create unique and customized looks. The brand's commitment to product compatibility offers flexibility and creativity to professionals, ensuring they can meet the diverse needs and preferences of their clients.

Gelish's dedication to education and professional support further contributes to its dominance in the nail salon industry. The brand offers training programs and resources for nail technicians, ensuring they are equipped with the knowledge and skills to provide exceptional Gelish manicures. By investing in professional development, Gelish strengthens its position as a brand that prioritizes the success and expertise of nail professionals.

With its reputation for durability, extensive color range, user-friendly application, and commitment to education, Gelish has solidified its place as a leading brand in the nail salon industry. Whether seeking a classic look or daring nail art, customers can rely on Gelish to provide long-lasting and beautiful manicures that surpass expectations.

Including Gelish in the discussion highlights the brand's pioneering role in the gel nail polish industry and its continuous commitment to quality and innovation.

Kiara Sky:

Kiara Sky has quickly emerged as a prominent brand in the nail salon industry, offering a wide range of products that combine quality, affordability, and creativity. Since its establishment in 2012, Kiara Sky has gained a dedicated following among both professional nail technicians and DIY enthusiasts.

One of Kiara Sky's standout products is its dip powder system. This innovative alternative to traditional acrylic or gel nails has gained popularity due to its ease of use and long-lasting results. The dip powder system offers a quick and straightforward application process, making it accessible for both professionals and those doing their nails at home. Kiara Sky provides a vast array of dip powder colors, allowing customers to experiment with different shades and create unique nail designs.

In addition to dip powders, Kiara Sky also offers a range of gel polishes. These high-quality gel formulas provide a durable and glossy finish, ensuring chip-free wear for an extended period. The brand's gel polishes come in an extensive range of shades, from classic neutrals to vibrant and trendy colors, catering to diverse customer preferences.

Kiara Sky's commitment to affordability sets it apart from many other brands in the market. Despite offering professional-grade products, Kiara Sky maintains competitive pricing, making it an accessible option for nail enthusiasts on a budget. This affordability factor has contributed significantly to the brand's growing popularity and customer loyalty.

Moreover, Kiara Sky emphasizes the importance of education and support for nail professionals. The brand offers training and certification programs, ensuring that nail technicians can provide high-quality services using Kiara Sky products. This dedication to education enhances the overall credibility of the brand and establishes Kiara Sky as a trusted resource within the nail salon industry.

Kiara Sky's rapid rise in popularity can also be attributed to its active engagement with customers through social media platforms. The brand showcases inspiring nail art designs and encourages enthusiasts to share their creations, fostering a vibrant and supportive community.

With its focus on quality, affordability, and community building, Kiara Sky has carved out a distinctive space in the nail salon industry. Its dip powder system, extensive gel polish range, commitment to education, and interactive online presence have propelled the brand's success and made it a go-to choice for nail enthusiasts seeking high-quality products at accessible prices.

Including Kiara Sky in the discussion sheds light on the brand's ability to cater to diverse customer needs while maintaining a strong presence in the ever-evolving nail salon industry.

CND Shellac:

CND Shellac is a pioneering brand in the nail salon industry that has revolutionized the way people experience long-lasting manicures. Known for its hybrid nail polish system, CND Shellac offers a unique combination of the best features from both traditional nail polish and gel formulas. This innovative approach has earned CND Shellac a strong reputation and a loyal customer base.

One of the key advantages of CND Shellac is its exceptional durability. When properly applied and cured, CND Shellac manicures can last up to two weeks without chipping or losing shine. This longevity is a significant draw for individuals seeking a long-lasting and low-maintenance manicure solution.

CND Shellac boasts a wide range of colors, finishes, and effects, allowing customers to express their individual style and keep up with the latest trends. From classic neutrals to bold and vibrant hues, the brand offers an extensive color palette to suit various preferences and occasions.

Another notable aspect of CND Shellac is its application and removal process. Nail technicians appreciate the brand's user-friendly application, as the polish goes on smoothly and evenly. CND Shellac also stands out for its easy removal, eliminating the need for extensive soaking or scraping that can damage the natural nail. This gentle removal process helps to maintain the overall health and integrity of the nails.

CND Shellac continuously stays ahead of the curve by introducing new collections and collaborating with industry professionals to create innovative designs and nail art techniques. Their commitment to education and training for nail technicians further solidifies their position as a brand dedicated to advancing the industry's standards and practices.

As a result of its exceptional quality, long-lasting performance, and commitment to innovation, CND Shellac has established itself as a leading brand in the nail salon industry. Professionals and nail enthusiasts alike trust CND Shellac for its ability to deliver salon-quality results and a flawless manicure experience that stands the test of time.


Seche is a well-established brand in the nail salon industry, known for its exceptional top coat and base coat formulas. With its innovative technologies and commitment to quality, Seche has garnered a loyal following among professionals and nail enthusiasts alike.

Seche's most renowned product is the Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat. Loved for its quick-drying properties and high-gloss finish, Seche Vite has become a staple in many nail salons. The top coat not only provides a beautiful shine but also forms a protective barrier that helps prevent chipping and extends the life of manicures. Its fast-drying formula saves time and allows for a hassle-free manicure experience.

In addition to the top coat, Seche offers the Seche Clear Crystal Clear Base Coat. This base coat provides a smooth and even surface for nail polish application, helping to enhance the longevity of manicures. It helps to prevent staining of the natural nail and promotes better adherence of nail polish, ensuring a flawless and long-lasting result.

One of the distinguishing features of Seche products is their high-quality formulas. Seche has a reputation for creating products that deliver professional-grade results. The brand prioritizes innovation and continuously strives to develop new and improved formulas to meet the evolving needs of nail technicians and customers.

Seche's commitment to nail health and care is evident in its range of treatment products. From nail strengtheners to cuticle oils, Seche offers a comprehensive selection of solutions to address various nail concerns. These products are designed to nourish and protect the nails, promoting overall nail health and enhancing the longevity of manicures.

Furthermore, Seche stands out for its user-friendly application and removal processes. The formulas are designed to be easy to apply, ensuring a smooth and even application. When it comes to removal, Seche products are known for their easy and gentle removal techniques, minimizing the risk of damage to the natural nails.

Seche's dedication to excellence has earned the brand a strong reputation and the trust of professionals in the industry. Nail technicians often rely on Seche products to achieve flawless manicures that not only look beautiful but also stand the test of time.

Including Seche in the discussion highlights the brand's commitment to innovation, quality, and nail care. With its top coat, base coat, and treatment products, Seche provides essential tools for achieving long-lasting, salon-quality manicures while maintaining the health and integrity of the natural nails.

Market Differentiation and Dominance

While each brand mentioned above has its own distinct identity, they share common traits that contribute to their market dominance. These brands prioritize quality, offering durable and long-lasting formulas that meet customer expectations. Additionally, they focus on innovation, regularly introducing new colors, finishes, and product lines to keep customers engaged.

Moreover, these leading brands often collaborate with industry professionals, including nail technicians and artists, to develop new products and techniques. They also invest in marketing strategies, such as celebrity endorsements and social media campaigns, to stay relevant and maintain their market share.


The nail salon industry thrives on creativity, quality, and innovation. Brands like OPI, Gelish, Kiara Sky, CND Shellac, and Seche have successfully established themselves as industry leaders by offering exceptional products and services. Through their commitment to meeting customer needs and staying at the forefront of trends, these brands continue to dominate the market and inspire nail enthusiasts worldwide. Whether you're a professional nail technician or someone who enjoys doing your nails at home, exploring the offerings of these renowned brands will undoubtedly enhance your nail salon experience.

Written and posted by:

Shawn Doan

Co-Founder & CEO at Khloé

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