Friday, January 22, 2010

Some Nicole by OPI Polishes [Fall and Winter 2009]

Good morning all! I hope today is the start to a great weekend for you guys. I'll be honest, I'm sitting here in bed watching Lifetime Movies (don't lie, you've watched them, too!) and checking out some new polishes I just got. These were the first Nicole by OPI's I ever tried.

I laughed when I said the name You're Blue-tiful outloud. I'm a sucker for cute little things like that. But on to the actual polish; I really like this one. It's a dusty blue-perwinkle with a shimmer/frost finish. I used three coats, but it can certainly be done in two. Below is a picture without the flash, so you can see what it looks like out of the light.
Sorry about the ridge in my nails; I'm having some issues ever since I took my acrylics off.
Then I put on the topcoat Let's Get Star-ted. It's a pink-purplely looking mixture, with a clear base and particles of glitter and, of course, stars. Normally I don't care for these types of polishes, but I will definitely wear this one!
Then I tried You're Blue-tiful with the Sprinkle of Twinkle topcoat. Clear base with bits of microglitter, as well as holographic hexagons. I thought I had distributed all the sparkles evenly over the nail, but now that I see the picture, I didn't do a great job. Normally with polishes like this and Let's Get Star-ted I dip the brush, paint my nail with polish (that normally contains the glitter) and then go back and dip the brush into the bottle to collect the bigger pieces, like the stars or hexagons. Then I can just dot them on my nail wherever.

I also tried Violet Vibe; I would call it a mauve-y purple with lavender undertones and a shimmer/frost finish. Okay, so I'm not great at describing polish colors, but you get the idea. This one applied nicely in two coats. This color isn't really "me," but it's still a good polish for the purple-loving ladies out there.

Let's Get Star-ted over Violet Vibe. This is a pretty cool combination, I think. The stars have a pink hue to them, so these two go together very nicely.
Finally, topped with Sprinkle of Twinkle. In this picture, you can see the holographic hexagons pop better.

You're Blue-tiful and Violet Vibe are from Fall 2009; Sprinkle of Twinkle and Let's Get Star-ted are from Winter 2009.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

BB Couture Hands of Hope Collection; Helping the Victims of the Haiti Earthquake

By now we all know about the devastation in Haiti, and there is a way you can help. BB Couture created six colors, the Hands of Hope Collection, and 25% of the sales go to the Salvation Army so that they can better aid those that have been affected by the earthquakes.

A quick word before the polishes: My family swears by the Salvation Army. In World War II, my grandfather was in combat overseas, and the Salvation Army was right behind the troops on the front line, taking care of the men and passing out food like coffee and doughnuts in the freezing cold.

Tortuga Island: Explore the exotic lush green island foliage.
Kyona Beach: Gaze up at the cloudless baby blue sky while sunning on the beach.
Bassin’s Blue: Experience subtle turquoise pools linked by spectacular waterfalls.
Labadie Beach: Delight in the delicate pink hues of the setting sun.
Cape Haitian: Mornings bring a mysterious pale violet haze over the mountains.
Paradise: Savor the natural beauty of Haiti along the endless sandy beige beaches.

So what do you think? You don't have to buy the entire set; just one polish will make a difference. Some other bloggers have swatches up, so if you're interested, take a look. You can buy the polishes at Overall Beauty now.

If you're interested in other ways to help, you can check out relief efforts such as The Salvation Army and The Red Cross.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Orly Bloom Comparisons

Okay, since I got the Orly Bloom Collection polishes this morning I've been wanting to swatch them against other polishes I have to see how they measure up, color-wise.

First, we have Orly Gumdrop, China Glaze For Audrey, and Essie Mint Candy Apple. In the bottle they look pretty alike. Actually, Mint Candy Apple is kind of out of place, but I put it in here anyway.

On the nails...
From left to right, Mint Candy Apple, Gumdrop, and For Audrey. Click the picture to better see the difference. For Audrey is slightly darker than Gumdrop, but not by much. It also seems to be a tad more blue.

Then we have Snowcone and China Glaze Secret Peri-wink-le.
Nice shot of my stuffed Easter bunny in the corner.
Left is Snowcone and right is Secret Peri-wink-le. Snowcone is more blue, while Secret Peri-wink-le is a cooler purple.

Finally, Pixy Stix and Essie Cute as a Button. I'm not sure why I thought they would be so similar, because looking at them both now, they are not dupes.
Cute as a Button is darker, while Pixy Stix seems softer.
Pixy Stix on the left and Cute as a Button on the right.

So two out of three ain't bad...only Gumdrop appears to have a dupe. Only nail freaks like us would be able to tell the difference. Haha!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Orly Sweet Collection [3 out of 6]

Please excuse my nails; I know they're stubby, but they're growing. Slow and steady wins the race, right?

As you may have gathered from the title, I have three polishes from Orly's Sweet Collection. I love pastels, don't you? Especially on my toes. Remember those Easter Egg-y colors I was talking about? Well, here they are. Each bottle comes with a little lip gloss charm attatched.

Here's Gumdrop, a minty green. In the bottle it looks less blue than it really is, that's for sure. It looks like it could be a dupe for Essie Greenport or China Glaze For Audrey. I'll do a comparison as soon as I can. The formula on this one was kind of weird. It wasn't thick, but kind of tacky. Tacky as in sticky, not as in Real Housewives of New Jersey. It wasn't terrible, but it took some extra effort to get it smooth in three coats.

I was expecting Snowcone to be more of a powder blue, but nevertheless I'm happy with it. Formula on this guy was more manageable than Gumdrop; I used only two coats. Below is a picture that gives a slightly better indication of the color.
I'm curious to see how it compares to China Glaze Secret Peri-wink-le.

All the pink lovers will appreciate Pixy Stix. It's certainly not neon by means, but it is pretty bright, although it's a pastel. It's formula was great; the first coat seemed streaky, but the second evened everything out. This one reminded me of Essie Cute as a Button, but brighter. It's just a happy color; I can see myself wearing this in the spring.

And let's not forget the lipglosses. They're cute, but I mean, am I ever going to use them? Nah, probably not. I'm not a lipgloss person at all, though, so I can't really comment. They smell great but I can't detect much of a flavor.
From left to right we have Gumdrop, Snowcone, and Pixy Stix.

Any thing look good to you? I still want to try the other three polishes, so if I get my hands on those somewhere I'll swatch them, too. Good job, Orly. Keep 'em coming.


Orly Bloom Collection [3 out of 6]

Let me begin by saying, Kudos, Orly. Mad props. Here I have three of the six polishes in Orly's Bloom Collection and I love 'em,

What I love about this collection is that these aren't the colors you expect to see in the spring, but they are spring colors. These are deep, rich hues that completely stand out from all the Easter egg-y colors. Don't get me wrong, I love all these pastels and sweet colors coming out, but this is just a bolder collection that I think you can wear past spring and into summer and fall.

But, if you are craving softer, brighter colors, Orly made a second collection, Bloom. How cool is that? Thinking outside the box while also giving the people what they want.

Sorry, I'm just really happy about these Orly collections. Anyway, onto the polishes!

Blushing Bud is a blue-based pink. Kind of fuschia. My mom would love this one. I can see myself wearing this one my toes. It looks a little darker in real life in you're in the shade, but this shot is pretty accurate. It reminds me of raspberries, even though it is in no way the color of an actual raspberry. I don't know. But I like it.

Ginger Lily is a rust-colored shimmer. Kind of red, kind of orange, kind of brown. To me it's mostly brown.
Here you can see the base color better.
And just in case you were wondering what a real ginger lily looks like. They come in all different colors, and I've seen a few that were really the color of Ginger Lily.

Finally, we have Thorned Rose. It's a deep purple-red. It reminds me of red wine. I put three coats on this one, whereas the other were just two, because I wanted to make sure I had even coverage. That's probably my mistake, though, and two coats would be fine.

Formula on these was great, thin but way pigmented. Like I said, the first two are two coats, and the third needs three.
What do you think?


Thursday, January 7, 2010

China Glaze Millenium

I was in search of a great silver metallic polish and baby did I find one. Check out China Glaze Millenium it not everything you've ever wanted in a metallic?

If there are any major brushstrokes that is due to user-error. And this polish is shiny. Like, SHINY. I could not stop staring at my fingers. Above is two coats, but I really only needed one. Plus, you practically need a jackhammer to get this to chip. I am in love with this one!

Millenium is from the China Glaze Chrome Collection, released in fall 2009.

Barielle Wildflower Collection Preview

I can't wait for this collection's release! Barielle Wildflower Collection looks amazing! If the colors weren't great enough, three polishes were designed by Elle, the Creative Director, in order to fight ovarian cancer.

As far as colors go, we have:
A Bouquet for Ava - a cool Caribbean blue

June Bug - a teal with fuchsia glitter
Myrza’s Meadow - a light lime green with silver glitter
Snap Dragon - a metallic sea foam green
Blossom - an opaque peach
Darling Dahlia - a deep fuchsia with a hint of silver metallic

A Bouquet for Ava, Junebug, and Myrza’s Meadow benefit the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, but I'll fill you guys in when I have all the details. What do you think so far? Any polishes catch your eye?

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Fake Nails: The Aftermath

I feel like I need a big disclaimer banner running across the screen saying


This is not an attempt to discourage anyone from getting fakes put on. I just want to share my experience...and it was a doozy. As some of you know, I had acrylics put on because my real nails weren't looking too good and I wanted to swatch all my new goodies and actually do the polishes justice. After ten days, my fakes looked like this:

You can see where my nails were starting to grow out. I felt like at this point, I could get rid of my fake tips and get back to my real nails. 100% acetone nail polish remover, a bowl to soak my hands in, cotton balls, and a nail buffer. Now, I know that acetone can eat through thin plastic. But for reasons I can't completely explain, I thought it would be a great idea to soak my hands in acetone in a cheap flimsy plastic bowl. As it turns out, it wasn't a great idea, and I had a lot of fun cleaning the blue acetone/melted plastic goop out of my carpet. My mother was thrilled, too, when she saw the stain it left behind. ANYWAY, the moral of the story is to pick a tougher dish to place your acetone in.

Here is what my nails looked like twenty minutes into soaking them. As you can tell, the plastic had started to disintegrate by this time.

Attractive, right? There was picking and pulling and tugging at my fake nails, but they would not come off. I tried to soak them for more time, but I ended up just giving in and tearing the tips off myself. I would not recommend that, in case you were wondering. When I finally got them off, my nails were not in great shape.

You can see the damage done, especially on the last two fingers. I think the technician overbuffed my nails before putting on the tips, and I know that my removal did not help things, either. It was quite annoying to get the glue residue off, and it took some intense buffing and smoothing to get my nails feeling okay again.

Here's the end result. My nails are as short as they can be, really, and the surfaces are bumpy and they generally feel unhealthy. I have been taking a Biotin every day and have been trying different nail treatments to make them stronger. It's a slow process, but in time they'll be swatch-worthy again.

So, no, I'm not saying don't get fake nails put on. Some people love them. I just had a poor experience, which is mostly (if not all) my fault. How have you guys' fake tips removals gone? Hopefully better than mine! Any tips for a better experience next time? Let me know!

A look at what's coming up...

 Most of you guys have seen these, but I'm pretty excited about the collections that are coming up for 2010, so I thought I'd mention them here!

First, the OPI Hong Kong Collection of spring/summer 2010, due out in February.

Bling Dynasty: A char-"ming" gold that shimmers and glimmers
Red My Fortune Cookie: And this rich red is in my future
Hot & Spicy: A sizzling coral that’s a kung pao wow!
Dim Sum Plum: A berry delectable delicacy
Jade is the New Black: The vibrant green is the new fashion vibe
Suzi Says Feng Shui: A serene cobalt blue to balance your yin yang
A Good Man-darin is Hard to Find: But you've found it- in this zesty red-orange!
Lucky Lucky Lavender: Be pretty and prosperous in this luscious light purple
Meet Me on the Star Ferry: A Kowloon-lit, moonlit violet
Panda-monium Pink: Lend a panda a hand-a in this uproarious light pink
Pearl of Wisdom: Smart girls choose this lustrous pearl shade
Chop-sticking to My Story: I mean it- "pick up" this warm caramel shade

Ooooh! I am so excited for this collection! I'm most excited for Jade is the New Black, Suzi Says Feng Shui, A Good Man-darin is Hard to Fin, and Pearl of Wisdom! See anything you like?

And China Glaze's Poolside Collection, which is to be released in April...

Pool Party
Flip Flop Fantasy
Sun Worshiper
Yellow Polka Dot Bikini
Kiwi Coolada
Towel Boy Toy
Neons!!! These seem pretty neat; not your average purple-yellow-pink-orange quartet of neons...I mean I love me some OPI and Essie neons of the past, but these China Glaze neons look like a fresh take on and old concept. Let's hope the formula is up to par with the China Glazes of the past...neons are tricky.
Check out Essie 2010 Spring Collection...

Neo Whimsical
Pop Art Pink
Red Nouveau
Tart Deco
Van Dgo
Typical Essie, I think, as far as colors go. Nothing really jumps out at me, except maybe Tart Deco. We'll have to wait and see, I guess. What about you guys?
Finally, we have Orly Spring 2010: Sweet,which are to be released in April as well. WOW. I want these!

Pixy Stix
Cotton Candy

I want these, too! Lemonade, Gumdrop, and Snowcone look amazing!
So what do we think? Any polishes you're dying to have? Or are these all just eh for you? Do tell, amigas!


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