Sunday, January 30, 2011

OPI- Ali's Big Break

I'm a girl
I'm gonna live the dream
I'm gonna live out my fantasy

Look at me
And tell me what you see
You know what I'm gonna be
---Bo and Monica "I'm Gonna Be a Star"


Not much to say here- didn't like this. It was super thick, gummy, and difficult to apply. I just wasn't a fan. I love the bright, cheery, cherry-red of the bad, but the flecks where just too thick I think? Maybe my novice-ness is just too pervasive, but I just did not apply this well. I had high hopes when I looked at it in the bottle, but once I got down to applying, that hope flew out the window. It was realllllly sheer too.

Oh well...

Report card:

Color= C+ (great in theory, but not so much reality)
Formula= C- (bad, especially a letdown since I love OPI)
Brush= A (OPI generally has good brushes, but this was a mini and sucked majorly)
Price= D- ($8, a toss-up- good if you like it, but a bigtime bummer if you don't)

Overall= C

Not a helmer but...

This is the home of my polishes. It's an old treadle machine! Ignore the rag and ziplock baggie full of cleaners, I was cleaning it)


Saturday, January 29, 2011

OPI- Take the Stage

He was a "rock and roll messiah"
She was known for her childcare
The truth is gonna give up the world
If you can give up the stage
If I can give up the stage
If we can give up the stage
---Live "Stage"


Like the others in the collection, it isn't so bad. But it's a glitter, which is not really my kind of thing. It's nice enough though, if you are into glitters. It's very foil-ish in finish and lasts well. It isn't so gritty either as other glitters can be, it's pretty fluid and smooth. It's a pretty, juicy orange too, it's nice. Unfortunately, it's not very versatile in my opinion. Also, it might make some people's skin look off, green or brassy.

Color= B (it's nice, if you like orange and glitter)
Formula= A (really nice, as OPI usually is)
Brush= A (this is a mini, but OPI's are usually great, though minis usually stink, especially with glitters)
Price= D- ($7.50, either a good investment, if you like it, or a total wash, if you hate it)

Overall= B-

Friday, January 28, 2011

Wet n Wild- Wild Card

I love you 'cause your Deuces Are Wild, girl
Like a double shot of lovin' so fine
I been lovin' you since you was a child, girl
'Cause you and me is two of a kind
---Aerosmith "Deuces are Wild"


Love this one! I came across it online in pics when I was trying to discover the name of a nameless Wet n Wild I got in a holiday gift set. My nameless is more pink. Wild Card is more purple. It is a slightly golden-tinged duochrome as well.

Formula is excellent, applies and dries awesomely. It is a pretty color to me as well, and I think flattering for many. I can see it working for lots of different occasions, dressed up or dressed down. For 99 cents, you can't go wrong!

Report card:

Color= A (I think it's unique, and pretty as well as generally flattering for many skin tones)
Formula= A- (I had like one bubble, but the rest of it was awesome)
Brush= B- (it was a little long, I'd rather it were a smidge shorter)
Price= A+ (just 99 cents!)

Overall= A-

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Franken- "Aurora"

Aurora is the effort
Of the Celestial Face
Unconsciousness of Perfectness
To simulate, to Us.
---Emily Dickinson "Aurora is the effort"


I frankened this with L.A. Colors "Classic White" and L.A. Colors "Classic Pink" plus some Jazz "18K Gold" and some Sally Hansen "White Diamond." I like it, it has a very odd, but pretty, finish in my opinion. It looks fluid and milky, yet also metallic. It looks like the gold rays of dawn breaking, hence why I named it "Aurora." It was opaque in 3 coats and didn't have many issues formulawise. I like it, and decided it's a keeper. Oh, I dug around and it looks very similar to Chanel "Gold Lame." Fun!

Report card:

Color= A (I realllllllly like it)
Formula= A- (it's pretty good I think, maybe a smidge gummy)
Brush= n/a (this is a L.A. Colors bottle, came in a mini mani 2 pack)
Price= B+ (I figured this up to have cost me about $2.25, so not bad)

Overall= A-

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

OPI- Rising Star

The ugly mess you thought you were is fading fast
Now something's spoken through it's virtues
The night of black is rolling back at long last
The wheel of fate turns to your fortune
---Wishbone Ash "New Rising Star"


I knew I wouldn't like this, so I was meh with the swatching, sorry. I just don't like glitters that much. I like the red one, but the rest, bleh. Not a fan personally. They are very pretty and blingy though, just not my style.

Color is a super-shiny, bright foily glitter with a golden base. Application was decent, considering it was a mini and the brush sucked. Dried quickly as well.

Report card:

Color= B+ (it's interesting, I'll give it that, and pretty, if you are into glitters)
Formula= A (this was rather nice, considering)
Brush= A (well, rating for a regular OPI brush, not this one, which was a mini and sucked totally)
Price= D- (OPI are 7.50 to 8 bucks, which to me is too expensive for a polish I am not in love with)

Overall= B

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Sally Hansen- Diamond

"I loved being outside. We'd hold lightning bugs in our fingers and pretend they were diamond rings."
Loretta Lynn


I bought this at Dollar Tree in a 2-pack. I found several Nail Prisms there. This one is "Diamond" and it's a silvery-grey base with lot of holo glitter. It applies....ok. It's pretty bleh to me. Not really here or there ya know. Kinda was gummy and slow to dry, but it does look interesting and pretty when it's all said and done. I just don't foresee an occasion where I'll wear this again unfortunately. Just not my style.

Report card:

Color= B+ (it's interesting, but I don't think flattering for many skin tones)
Formula= C (kinda is lowish marks all across the board, not the worst, but not good either)
Brush= D (pretty splayed and unruly)
Price= A+ (2 pack for a dollar, so 50 cents, woot!)

Overall= B-

Monday, January 24, 2011

L.A. Colors- Tease

A song just doesn't come on. I've always had to tease it out, squeeze it out.
---Dorothy Fields


Ew...this was just....ew. Shown is 4-5 coats. It took forever for opacity. By those last coats, I got lazy and disgruntled, hence the horrible paintjob. I knew I was removing it later and never wearing it again.

That's all I got to say about that!

Report card:

Color= D- (except for some slightly interesting blue flash, most unoriginal fuchsia ever)
Formula= F (5 coats! Need I say it again?)
Brush= D- (super thin and flimsy, barely usable with this polish)
Price= A+ (hey, it was a buck- a buck wasted though imo, but I'll give it an A here, generally I am happy with L.A. Colors)

Overall= D+

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Color Club- Best-Dressed List

Any man may be in good spirits and good temper when he's well dressed. There ain't much credit in that.
---Charles Dickens


This might look a little beat-up. I had worn it for 4 days after the holidays, so I was packing up lots of stuff like the Christmas tree, decorations, wrapping stuff, etc. I loved it, and I think it looked great and lasted well. It's a taupey mushroomy earthy tan. Very pretty and flattering to my skin tone. Not sure if it would be flattering for everyone though.

On my ring finger is a comparison of L.A. Colors "Antique Rose." Obviously, it's much redder and much darker, and has the golden shimmer where BDL does not. I like both.

Report card:

Color= A- (pretty lovely, if a bit neutral)
Formula= A (just about the best around)
Brush= B (mine is just average)
Price= B- (I got mine in a multi-pack at Ross for 8 dollars, but they run 3-4 dollars singly online)

Overall= B+

Saturday, January 22, 2011

L.A. Colors- Antique Rose

A single rose can be my garden... a single friend, my world.
---Leo Buscaglia


This is L.A. Colors "Antique Rose" with Color Club "Best-Dressed List" on the ring finger as a comparison. It is a dark clayish color with an interesting golden shimmer. I actually really like it, maybe the most of all my clay-toned polishes. It has a lovely depth hanks to the shimmer. It dried quickly and lasted well, and held up just as well, if not better, than the Color Club did. It hard barely any tipwear at all after 3 days, and the CC had slightly more. And get this- it could easily be a 1 coater if you apply it well!

All that for a dollar! I won't complain!

Report card:

Color= A (very nice, to me. It's one I plan to rewear often)
Formula= A (pretty nifty, it might be slightly thick, but overall, still great)
Brush= C+ (the brush is too thin to me, it would be better if it was a bit sturdier and wider)
Price= A+ (just a dollar, so that's the best you can ask for)

Overall= A-

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Essie- Nude Beach

"Now that nude-beach season is in full, um, swing, taking things off is once again a public matter. It comes with the additional difficulty of hot sand under one's feet and the unavoidable, inescapable truth that gravity always wins."
---Elizabeth Rosner


Yeah, my nails are stained. It's a shame because this is lovely on its own in my opinion. This is similar to a polish I used to have, Sahlly Hansen used to make it. It was from the Star Opal line but I can't remember the name. Oscar broke my bottle and I forgot to find the name. So, I scoured the internet and bought what most looked like it, which was Pure White Opal. But it's not pure white at all, it's a beigey milky color. Maybe it's old and has yellowed. Eithey way, it looks gross. But this polish looks virtually identical to my original polish, so I think I am not going to worry about it any more.

I love it for "lazi manis" where I just swipe on a single coat for some subtle shimmer and then go on about my day.

Report card:

Color= B- (not the most original, but I like it, and it's nice for layering)
Formula= A- (it's good, dries nice and stuff, not too gritty, etc etc)
Brush= B (average)
Price= D (seems like it runs 5 to 8 bucks, depending on where you find it)

Overall= C+

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Color Club- High Society

"Mike: [on telephone] This is the voice of doom.
Mrs. Lord: What?
Mike: This is to tell you your days are numbered.
[hangs up]
Mrs. Lord: Oh dear. One of the servants has been at the sherry again. "
---High Society, film (1956)


Ignore the fuzz! lol


In a word- LOVELY! I love this color and i was very flattering on me. And Color Club's quality was amazing, especially considering I found a set of 6 or 7 polishes at Ross's for just 8 bucks!!! I was shocked! This is definitely excellent quality polish here, so that was a great price!

It's a creme clayish taupeish greyish dreary-dayish cafe-au-laitish kinda color and I love it. Definitely classy! It also lasted forever and with a nice shiny finish and dried in a reasonable amount of time. It's a keeper!

Report card:

Color= A- (I've seen it with other brands, but it's done right)
Formula= A+ (excellent!)
Brush= B+ (a smidge thin but still fine)
Price= B- (not considering the awesome price at Ross, which ended up about a buck a bottle, it can be found for between 3 and 4 dollars online at various locations)

Overall= B+

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Revlon- Perplex

EXPERIENCE, like a pale musician, holds
A dulcimer of patience in his hand,
Whence harmonies, we cannot understand,
Of God; will in his worlds, the strain unfolds
In sad-perplexed minors: deathly colds
Fall on us while we hear, and countermand
Our sanguine heart back from the fancyland
With nightingales in visionary wolds.
We murmur ' Where is any certain tune
Or measured music in such notes as these ? '
But angels, leaning from the golden seat,
Are not so minded their fine ear hath won
The issue of completed cadences,
And, smiling down the stars, they whisper--
---"Perplexed Music" by Elizabeth Barrett Browning


I have a terrible camera, in terms of fine, up-close detail like the shimmer in this polish. We also had a spate of terrible weather when I swatched this. But, I can attest that is looks just like all the other online swatches and is just gorgeous! This color has "me" written all over it. I love purples and blurples, and greyish colors, and shimmer. It's also excellent in terms of formula. It was opaque in just one coat for most fingers, though I added a second coat for good-measure, dried fairly quickly, and was hardy and lasted a while. I also think it would be flattering for many skin tones. Just an all-around nice polish.

Report card:

Color= A+ (Love it, even though I know it's a dupe. I am definitely not paying Chanel prices!)
Formula= A+ (also love it, hits all the marks)
Brush= A (mine is ever-so-slightly too narrow, but it is still awesome)
Price= C (I paid $4.49 at Ulta, well worth it!)

Overall= A-

Monday, January 17, 2011

Comparison- Revlon "Perplex" versus NOPI "Bah Plum-Bug"


This is Revlon "Perplex" and Nicole by OPI "Bah Plum-Bug." I had spotted the NOPI at Marshall's and this was before I'd found Perplex at Ulta. So I thought it might work towards my Jones for Perplex/Paradoxal. Obviously, it is more "blurple" than dusky violet like Perplex/Paradoxal. It also has more of a rosy shimmer versus the violet glow that Perplex has.

One shoddy swatch later (ignore icky cuticles and how I didn't bother cleaning it up, I was lazy that night lol)- Perplex on thumb and Bah Plum Bug on pointer.


The differences are even more obvious on the nail than in the bottle. They really aren't alike at all, but, the idea is similar I suppose. Perplex is opaque in 1 coat, I swear. And I believe it's a creme. BPB is a jelly I think, and it took 2 coats, 3 on my thumb and middle finger I think.

I hesitate to pick a winner of these. Obviously, Perplex is gorgeous. But BPB isn't to be ignored either. I am glad to have both, but to be honest, the BPB's quality does leave something to be desired. It definitely needs a good topcoat (or two) because it is not a hardy polish. Easily scuffed for sure!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Comparison- Vampy Reds


Left to right: Nicole by OPI "Deeply in Love," Revlon "Raven Red," and Nic's Sticks "Do You Deliver."


Middle= Nic's Stick
Ring= Revlon
Pinky= NOPI

As you can see, the colors are all similar, yet different.

The Nic's Stick is the darkest. It almost has a purple-based tone to it. Shown is three coats for that one, since it is difficult to apply with that applicator. I love the color though, a great berry-wine red. It might have been easier to apply but my cheeky-monkey aka my son Oscar messed with it a while back and left the cap off, so it dried out. I've messed with it and nursed it back to usability, but it's frustrating, and as you can see, I have at least 2 other colors that fill the vampy-red desire and are much more easily applied.

The Revlon is a creme. Supposedly it got it's name based on the blood of a raven? Eh. It just sounds like an attempt to be gothier-than-thou to me. But, my middle name is Raven, so I had to purchase it (this was before I knew Zoya made a polish named Raven). The color is nice, and it applies decently. This is just a very average polish, in all terms. Average color, average application, average availability and price. It's just not something spectacular. But I would consider it classic. It is more bricky and opaque than the others. It does need a topcoat in my opinion, it can be prone to scuffs and tipwear more than average. Shown is 2 coats.

The Nicole by OPI polish- oh me. I love it. It's not a creme I don't think. I believe it's a jelly, or perhaps a mixture. Shown is 3 coats, but I think you can do 2 thickish coats instead. It's lovely and applies to nicely. It's a blood-red, and so dramatic. It has a slight blue tone to it and just exudes class and sexuality all in one and definitely VAMPY. It dries fairly quickly and with a cushy, glossy jelly-like finish. If you want a classic or vampy red, this is a great investment. Definitely the winner of the group.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Comparison- Medium Purples


left to right: Simple Pleasures nameless polish (from a JCP gift-set) and Color Club "Uptown Girl."


hasty swatch, thumb= nameless polish & pointer= Color Club.

As you can see, the colors are near identical. And for as cheap as it was, the nameless polish was not too bad in the quality department. But, the Color It's a dream to apply. It's glossy and cushy and just oh-so-nice.

But, you can catch the JCP set on clearance for 3.60 a box, which contains about 7 polishes I believe. About a week ago, my JCP still had lots of the polish. Check it out, if you are craving this color for cheap.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Comparison- Light Pinks


Left to right: Borghese "Angelica Blush," Color Club "She's Sooo Glam," Nicole by OPI "Scene Stealer," Essie "Pinking Up the Pieces", and L.A. Colors "Classic Pink."

Burry swatch, apologies...


Thumb= Borghese, pointer= CC, middle= NOPI, ring= Essie, and pinky= L.A. Colors.

Obviously, the Color Club one is definiely not similar at all. I wasn't sure til I applied it how sheer it was going to be. It's not sheer at all, it's pretty dang opaque. And BRIGHT. And fun. I am using that this spring for sure.

The others were more my intention, which is to say, French mani pinks.

Borghese's "Angelica Blush" was kinda streaky and thick. I am thinking of adding some Zoya Renew to this one to thin it a bit. It's unwieldy to apply and as you can see (pictured is 3 coats), just too dang streaky. It's lovely though and is the perfect color for a French mani.

Nicole by OPI "Scene Stealer" is a pretty color. It's interesting. It's pale and a similar lavender-based pink, reminds me of a pink version of Essie "Demure Vixen," which I happen to be sporting at the moment. As pretty as the color is, I have to admit, the application is sadly lacking. It's just a bit thick, and streak enough, to make you not want to continue wearing it. Plus, it is dependent upon a thick topcoat. It has a slightly chalky finish and was fairly imprintable even 24+ hours later. But it is such a nice color, in my opinion. But not quite right for a French mani. It's too saturated a color.

Essie "Pinking Up the Pieces" is interesting. It reminds me of a smoother version of Savvy Femme Couture "French Opal Rose Frost" with less obvious bluish flash. I think it would make for an interesting French mani actually, different from the normal sheer pinks. The ever-so-slightly-noticeable blue flash is lovely. It is extremely sheer, so don't expect to apply 3 or even 4 coats and achieve opacity. Pictured is 4 coats. Nuff said. This is best enjoyed as an intentional sheer, and I think 2 coats is best for it.

The L.A. Colors "Classic Pink" came in a cheapie clearance 2 pack from the Dollar General this past fall. I was hopeful it was going to be decent for a French mani, but honestly, it was way too streaky. The little brush was not conducive to application either. I have since frankened with it. I made a very pretty color at least, I will show it later.

So, ultimately, I wasn't too impressed with any of these for a Classic French manicure. I have kept the Angelica Blush, it most suits that purpose. But I will either need to thin it out or learn better ways of applying it. Essie "Pinking Up the Pieces" is a great option if you are looking for an unusual mani. L.A. Colors "Classic Pink" is not worth purchasing. But you can franken with it just fine. :)


Thursday, January 13, 2011

OPI- Lucerne-tainly Look Marvelous

"I am a marvelous housekeeper. Every time I leave a man I keep his house."
---Zsa Zsa Gabor


This was part of a mini set I got for Christmas from OPI called "Irri-swiss-ables." This was my favorite of the set. It is a shiny, dark silvery foil/glitter. I has a great finish, only slightly gritty. It says a lot when I like a glitter, since I normally can't stand them.

To me, this color is worth any hassle a glitter might deliver. I wore this for several days. Since it is a mini, I may end up buying the full-size, once I wear through this one. I'm not really sure.

Oh, and if you are wondering what's up with my ring finger, it's lighter because I put a coat of Wet n Wild Blitzen on there out of curiosity.

Report card:

Color= A (pretty nifty)
Formula= A (pretty nifty as well)
Brush= B+ (well, this is a mini, so it's not the best, but normally OPI brushes are awesome)
Price= F ($8.50, even that is a big expense on my budget!)

Overall= B-

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Comparison- Classic Red Cremes


Left to right: Wet n Wild "Red Red," OPI "Color So Hot it Berns," and Hard Candy "Fishnet."

My quick-n-dirty swatch:

Thumb= WNW, pointer= OPI, and middle= HC

As you can see, they are all very similar in color. CSHIB is perhaps more orange-toned than the other too, and the WNW more blue-toned, while the HC is more in the middle.

As far as formula goes, I honestly prefer the WNW. The Hard Candy one was too thin while the OPI was too thick. The WNW applied like a dream. All dried very well and have nice glossy finishes.

Ultimately, because of the ease of application being the only difference really with these polishes, I gave 1st prize to WNW "Red Red" and the other two are tied for 2nd.

I don't think I need all three, they are all so similar. Some may prefer to have them all, they might be different enough to them. But this el cheapo wishes she only had one of them.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Comparison- Sally Hansen Nail Prisms' Holos


Left to right: Purple Diamond, Pink Rose Diamond, and Blush Diamond.

I found these at Dollar Tree in 2 packs for a buck each. That's a pretty good deal. However, I apparently do not like holos. I like the purple one, but that's minimally so. The rest I can do without. They are all too similar for me to need them all.

They kinda take a little bit to dry, but not too bad, and they have a nice finish. I just don't like holos, bottom line. I think it looks odd on my fingers. Maybe for a party or something?

Monday, January 10, 2011

Comparison- Teal Metallics


This is Sally Hansen "Lagoon" on the left and a mini Nicole by OPI "Jade in the Shade" that came in a Wal-Mart holiday gift set this past Christmas.

Here's my icky, blurry swatch, Lagoon on ring finger and JITS on pinky.

See, they look a LOT a like. JITS is not as opaque as the others. Since I have more of the Lagoon and it's more opaque and applies more easily, I used the other for frankening already. But I decided to swatch them so people can decide if they really need both.


Sunday, January 9, 2011

Comparison- Sheer opalescents


This is one of my favorite type of polishes. Shiny, shimmery, duochromatic, opalescent sheers. Above, from left to right, we have: Nina Ultra Pro "Molten Copper," Borghese "Patina Pearl," Pure Ice "Sea Shell," which is discontinued, and Sally Hansen "White Diamond," also discontinued.

The Pure Ice polish is my oldest actual bottle of polish. It was the originator of my "lazy mani" attitude of swiping on one coat of a sheer, opalescent polish and going on about my day. "Molten Copper" I bought back when I first got back into nails, this fall. Sally was having a buy 2 get 1 free for that brand I believe. The Borghese polish I found on sale recently at Walgreens, for $2.19 down from $8.17. I knew I already owned the similar Sally Hansen one, but I haven't been impressed with its quality, so I picked up the Borghese one to put them both through the gauntlet. I found the Sally Hansen one at my local Dollar Tree, along with other Sally Hansen polishes.

Now, when I swatched these, it was obvious that "Sea Shell" and "Molten Copper" looked nothing like the other too, so since my camera was getting full, I decided to just take pics of the Borghese and Sally Hansen polishes.


They were both pearly in general, with green on one side and pink on the other. They looked so similar, although the Borghese has a slightly stronger pink flash than the other. Ultimately, I liked the Borghese finish, and application, best. Poor Sally Hansen "White Diamond" now sits in my to-franken bag. It just takes way too long to dry and smudges like crazy. It is slightly more sheer and better for layering though, I'll give it that.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

nameless Wet n Wild, what are you?


One of the colors I thought my nameless Wet n Wild holiday gift-set pink might have been was Wild Card. Walgreens restocked their WNW display, so I snagged it. I knew when I saw the bottle in person that it was not my nameless color. I did a comparison anyway. Wild Card is more purple, while the nameless one is more pink and more duochrome with a somewhat metallic finish. I like both quite a bit, but Wild Card wins. It's just lovely.


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Friday, January 7, 2011

Comparison- Dark plums


I kinda have been obsessed with dark plums lately. Obviously, or I wouldn't have so many lol.

Pictured above, left to right: Revlon "Plum Night," Nic's Sticks "Dash Into the Dark," Borghese "Carnevale Grape," and Nicole by OPI "Show You Care." There are subtle difference to these colors. The Revlon is a dark vampy plum, almost black. The Nic's Stick is slightly grapier than the Revlon. The Borghese is opaque at one coat, and obviously red-toned and grapey, but at two coats, is nearly indistinguishable from the others. The NOPI color is similar to the others, an uber-dark, grapey-plum but it has lovely, delicate silvery shimmer which provides interesting depth.


Quick n dirty swatch: thumb= Revlon "Plum Night," pointer= Nic's Sticks "Dash into the Dark," middle= Borghese "Carnevale Grape," and ring finger= NOPI "Show You Care."

The Revlon is a great example of a good, standard polish. I applies well in 2 coats, dries ok, nice and glossy, etc, and is easy and fairly inexpensive to find. The Nic's Stick, well...I don't like those things. I can't apply them very well. Lovely color, difficult applicator. The Borghese gets my vote for the fave of this spread. It's opaque with just one coat and dries at a decent rate and is nice and glossy with a lovely cushy, yet not smudgey, finish. It's also not so close to black as the others, so it stands out more. The NOPI one, that also is a fave, tied for first place I'd say. The shimmer just really sets it apart from the rest, and I think it's worth having, even if you have other dark plum shades.

Report card:

1st place: Borghese "Carnevale Grape & Nicole by OPI "Show You Care"
2nd place: Revlon "Plum Night"
3rd place: Nic's Stick "Dash into the Dark"

There ya have it!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Comparison- Metallic Orange


I ended up with oodles of metallic, shimmery, or glittery oranges after Christmas. Pictured above, left to right, is Sinful Colors "Courtney Orange," nameless Hard Candy from a Wal-Mart gift set, a nameless Wet n Wild, also from a holiday gift set (Dollar General), and then lastly OPI "Take the Stage."

I did a quick and dirty swatch:


Thumb= SC
Pointer= HC
Middle= WNW
Ring= OPI

The Sinful Colors and WNW are almost identical. They have very similar quality as well, and are both pretty nice. The Hard Candy...whew boy. It's awful. Ain't worth a flying fart. Gritty, stinky, goopy, took forever to dry, ec etc. The fumes from the Hard Candy polishes was just God-awful. Something funky is going on with them. And Take the Stage is nice, but I just don't like glitters in general. It's difficult to apply. It dries nice though and was hardy.

If I had to pick a fave, it's definitely Sinful Colors. A close second is the nameless WNW. Third is OPI "Take the Stage" but only if you like that sort of finish. The Hard Candy one is worhless. It doesn't even earn "4th place" because that implies some sort of value. It's terrible. The bottle is ok though, if you empty it to franken with, but I'm finding it extremely difficult to get the glitter all out.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Borghese- Angelica Blush

You're my angel
Come and save me tonight
You're my angel
Come and make it all right
---Aerosmith "Angel"


This is a polish I picked up on clearance for 2.19 at Walgreens right after Christmas. My L.A. Colors Classic Pink for french manis turned out bupkis. It was streaky and sheer, so I slated it for frankening (it now has a new life as a yummy golden-pink champagne color, which I've dubbed Aurora and I'll feature soon, or dreckly as my granny says.)

So, I picked up this color, hoping it would fill that now-empty spot. It is a mixed review. On one hand, it was thickish and somewhat streaky- at first application. Luckily, it smoothed out and took on an even glossy, milky-pink tone at 2 applications. My advice is to do the first application thin, then a moderate coat for the second application, to have even coverage and a nice, cushy finish once dry.

Ultimately, this will suit my purposes well and I am no longer in search of a sheer pink for french manis.

Report card:

Color= C+ (this is 'bout as generic as it gets, but hey, classics are classics for a reason I guess)
Formula= B- (suitably average, but would be nice if it were quite so thick)
Brush= A+ (love Borghese brushes)
Price= F (these run $8+ a Wags. If you want to spend that, buy OPI or something else)

Overall= C+

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Rachel Marie 100 Follower Giveaway!

Check her out! I love that she does polishes that are easy to acquire.

Hard Candy- nameless purple

Roses are red
Violets are purple
Sugar is sweet
And so is maple surple


This was part of a "Limited Edition" 4-polish gift-set at Wal-Mart this year for the holidays. I snatched it up on half-price clearance, so just $5 for 4 polishes. I only wanted it for the obvious Orly "Goth" dupe, but this ended up being a pleasant surprise. The orange and magenta glitters are atrocious. If you bought this set and haven't tried those yet, take my advice and toss them. All 4 of the polishes stink. They have a bizarre burnt-plastic, heavily chemical smell, a very strange thread of unusual fumes. Not your normal polish-fume, but a truly weird one, and I instantly get a bad headache from it. Insta-migraine, what joy! Those two stain like the dickens as well, so not only double up, but TRIPLE up a base coat. They aren't very opaque either. Took me 3 coats for those to get them opaque even somewhat.

But this post is about the purple one. It's got a slight duochrome effect and is a dusky purple metallic. It has that same odd fume as the others, but it's so pretty, I am willing to experiment with topcoats to hopefully counteract it.

Shown is 2 coats, but as you can see, it probably could do with a third.

If you aren't prone to migraines, and you like purples or duochromes, it would be nice to snag this set. Otherwise, I kinda get the impression that the orange and pink were the dregs of set, where they just sorta slapped something together to get the gift set on the shelves. Whatever that chemical is, they should definitely NOT use it again. It's AWFUL!

Report card:

Color= B- (pretty nifty, but not ground-breaking)
Formula= D+ (slightly poor dry time, and somewhat sheer, yet also staining. Main detraction is the bizarro fume)
Brush= C- (it's not the best, it's obviously cheap)
Price= D+ (HC runs $5, which is too much in my opinion. I've yet to be truly impressed with them)

Overall= C-

Monday, January 3, 2011

OPI- The Show Must Go On

"The Show must go on!
The Show must go on! Yeah,yeah!
Ooh! Inside my heart is breaking!
My make-up may be flaking...
But my smile, still, stays on!"
---Queen, The Show Must Go On


Wow, isn't that just brazen glory right there!? It's a deep, cranberry red foil/glitter. I got it in a mini set of the Burlesque collection. For that reason, my review may be affected, since the minis won't lend themselves to thick, glitter-based polishes, I'm thinking. It was hard to apply and took several coats.

Ultimately, I thought it was rather pretty and definitely fit the mindset of the collection. I can totally see a showgirl rocking this polish, leading the fellas around with just one crook of her finger. However, as lush and beautiful as it is, I don't think I will wear this polish any other time than the holidays. It's just not my regular style, and I found the glitter bothersome to remove, even with the FOIL method. I am just not a fan of glitters, no way around it.

Report card:

Color= B+ (very pretty, but not versatile)
Formula= B- (thick and unwieldy at times, but I blame the mini brush)
Brush= C+ (too small for this polish- if you want this color, get the full-size)
Price= F (OPI are expensive for this little country bumpkin, at $8.50. I know there are worse ones, but that's a spicy meatball for me)

Overall= C

Wet n Wild- Red Red

"The lady in red is dancing with me cheek to cheek"
---Lady in Red, by Chris De Burgh


This is pure and simple, classic red. I had read some iffy reviews, so I wasn't sure if it would be a disappointment or not. Well, I lucked out- my bottle must be just fine. It applied like butter and dried very quickly with a lovely finish. I got it on clearance at Fred's, so it was 49 cents, but these normally run 99 cents to a dollar. Awesomeness! I am really a Wet n Wild fan. Occasionally I am let down, but no more so than with other polish brands in general. My main prob was that the brush was a smidge splayed. Kinda annoying but manageable.

Overall, if you want a classic red, and don' want to pay a pretty penny, this should aptly satisfy the need.

Report card:

Color= A (it's a classic for a reason)
Formula= A- (great, and cheap too!)
Brush= B- (it could've been slightly better)
Price= A+ (only one dollar!)

Overall= A-

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Wet n Wild- nameless "Shiver?"

A new day is coming
People are changing
Ain't it beautiful
Crystal blue persuasion
---"Crystal Blue Persuasion" by Tommy James & the Shondelles


Another of my nameless polishes I got in a Wet n Wild gift set shortly before Christmas. It was $4 for 5 polishes, not a bad deal, and they all seem to have great quality, especially considering the price. Ultimately, I've been frankening with most of them. They aren't really groundbreaking/unique colors, but the formulas are pretty nifty.

These colors were all nameless, but I googled around and I suspect this one is Shiver, or something very similar. It's a light, chilly blue. It's got a smooth, metallic/frost finish.

Ultimately, it's not a color I really see myself using over and over, but if blues or frosts are your thing, then this might be for you.

Report card:

Color= C- (not the most imaginative)
Formula= C (decent, especially considering the price)
Brush= B- (pretty good, but could be better)
Price= A+ (5 polishes for 4 dollars in a gift set! And WNW are usually a dollar anyway)

Overall= B-

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Barielle- Jess's Champagne Toast- New Year's Mani!

"Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind?"
---Auld Lang Syne


This was my New Year's Mani. I found this polish at Ulta, my first ever trip there. It was on clearance, just 99 cents I believe, maybe 1.99? I'm a sucker for blue, metallic, and rose gold, so this was sort of a must-have once I laid eyes on it.

I forgot how badly I tend to dislike glitters. They are often thick, clumpy, and gritty. And a total pain in the a$$ to remove. Even with the touted FOIL method, it just wreaks havoc on my nails. But, I think this combo is very pretty. I would love a smoother version where the glitter could float or suspend rather than sink into the polish.

I think it dried fairly quickly and was fairly smooth, to the touch at least, though I feel like it looks much grittier than it feels. It was nice and hardy, lasted well, but it did chip in just a day, so now I had to change it. I'll probably try it again and try to apply it more smoothly and see what I think then. As it stands, I was slightly disappointed.

Overall, I think I might relegate this to holiday-only. I don't think it's very versatile.

Report card:

Color= A+ (very imaginative, I love it)
Formula= C+ (thick, smudgey, gritty, but remember, I just plain' ol don't like glitters usually)
Brush= B+ (pretty good, slightly better than average)
Price= D+ ($6...meh. I paid 2.99 for mine though on clearance at Ulta, my very first trip in!)

Overall= B-

Wet n Wild- Caribbean Frost

I want to give people a taste of the Caribbean, and show them the fun side of me.


This was my first recent WNW purchase since I've gotten back into polish, along with Blazed. They are nice. Maybe a smidge prone to bubbles. But for a dollar, I'll deal with it.

Caribbean Frost is a tealish green metallic. I really like it. It kinda shows brush-strokes though. But still, it's ok. For a buck, you can't hardly ask for the moon.

Report card:

Color= C- (pretty generic, everyone's got this color)
Formula= D+ (bubbly, thick, a bit unwieldy, took some time to dry)
Brush= C+ (mine is a smidge wonky)
Price= A+ (just a dollar)

Overall= C+

Made some more Frankens!

I attempted twice to get a red with green duochrome. One is more successful than the other (although still not quite what I want) and the other I attempted was a dupe of Kleancolor's discontinued "Pink Baby" color. It was quite a success, might I add. I might remove it from my Must-Have list. I'll swatch it and test it out to see. So look forward to Holly and Ivy (red/green duo) and Peach Bebe (Pink Baby dupe).