Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Free with Purchase: Nails Inc Fall Off The High-End Radar

In the past six weeks, we've had four press releases about free bottles of Nails Inc polish being given away with purchases of glossy magazines, newspapers, and even jeans.  Add this to the now oft-repeated Diet Coke freebies, and that makes a rather large number of free polishes available to collect - can we really still say that they're worth £11 a pop?

High end products are a funny old thing.  In some cases, they are genuinely of higher quality than their more competitively priced cousins.  In many cases, though, high end products command their more expensive price points based on the aspirational element; we buy them not only because we perceive them to be better quality, but also because the brand identity is something we aspire to ourselves.

In the past, we've talked about how freebies might alter consumer perception of a product's value.  Having seen so many free polish promotions going on in the past few weeks, I can't help but feel that Nails Inc have devalued their products to the extent that my entire perception of the brand has shifted - losing that aspirational edge.  Once, the Nails Inc brand meant fresh, interesting colours, professional, high-end manicures, and cute, distinctive packaging.  Now, I'm afraid, it just equals free giveaways and overvalued product, and for me, no longer counts as a high end brand.

What do you think?  Do you still buy Nails Inc products at full price?  Do you collect every free polish available?  Let us know in the comments!


  1. I don't think I have ever bought a Nails Inc polish. I got close once but couldn't bring myself to go through with it! I have quite a few bottles though (freebies and prizes) some I like and some I hate. The formula is very varied and I'd struggle to part with £11 for one unless I *really* loved the colour.

    I hate the packaging for a long time I assumed the shabby plastic lid was just the version they put out for freebies.......Nails Inc. lacks class for me and I think that's why I can't perceive it as a high end brand. Do you think all the collaborations actually lead to more sales or a better profile?
    Jane x

  2. Well, I once bought a set of their nail treatment polishes and just found them completely useless, so it put me off the brand more than the freebies do. Also, I don't find their colour selection that interesting, which is why I tend to save my splashing out for OPI. I find that the quality's always excellent, the bottles are (or seem?) big and the colour selection is amazing.

  3. I only ever buy Nails Inc when they have their oft-touted deals on their website. They have 10 bottles for £25 so often that I'd be mad to pay full price. I'll be heading to Boots this weekend to get my freebies with Dove :)

  4. What was once a cult, 'must-have brand' has now cheapened itself. They don't seem to be able to give the things away. You don't seem to be able to buy a loaf of bread recently without them throwing Nails Inc Polishes at you.

    I cherish my nail polish collection but resent paying £11 for something that I could get free with a bottle of coke 2 weeks later.

    I wish they would sort it out....OPI manage to maintain their sales without begging people to try their product!


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