Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Nicole by OPI One Less Lonely Girl Collection

A.k.a. the Justin Bieber Collection!


The One Less Lonely Girl Collection is helping Justin raise awareness and funds for a nonprofit organization close to Justin’s heart, called Pencils of Promise (PoP). PoP helps to build schools and increase educational opportunities in the developing world. Justin has joined together with PoP to build 100 schools for children around the world with the help of young people everywhere.


Great cause, and the colors are pretty fabulous. I don't know how involved Justin Bieber was, if at all, in creating these colors, but whoever did made me pretty happy :D Sorry about the lame one-finger swatches. There was a serious nail breaking just before I swatched these, which makes me sad! Hopefully, when these nails grow back I can get some better shots!




My Lifesaver wasn't in the original press release, right? But I do believe it's still part of the collection. It's a mint green creme that leans towards blue. It reminds me of China Glaze For Audrey, and Essie Mint Candy Apple, AND Orly Gumdrop, so I'll have to do a comparison. Not terribly unique, but it does apply very well, so that makes it stand out. 3 coats.






Give Me The First Dance is a pretty foil silver. Again, not unique. But it has a slightly different quality then some of the others we've seen this year. It reminds me of powder-coated steel. I'd like to compare it to China Glaze Cheers to You. 2 coats.






OMB doesn't seem to fit in this collection of silver and blue and purple. But then, neither does My Lifesaver, I don't think. This is an exceptional red, in my opinion. The magenta shimmer makes it stand out. 2 coats.






This picture of Prized Possession Purple is not accurate at all. In real life it is waaay more red. The formula on this one was a little weird--wait till each coat dries, because it leaves bald spots if you don't. 3 coats.






I am in love with One Less Lonely Glitter! A lilac glitter, and it doesn't dry too gritty! The formula was a little gloppy, but it's certainly manageable. 3 coats.






Me + Blue is my favorite of this collection. It's a cerulean blue (my favorite crayon!) with shimmer. AND, it has very, very fine holographic shimmer in there, too! 3 coats, but could have been 2.






Step 2 the Beat of my  is a clear base topcoat with sparse mini glitter particles and pink and purple mylar hearts. I think they're mylar. Here they are over each polish, except My Lifesaver, which I somehow forgot! I don't particularly care for these types of polishes, but it goes well with the collection.




What do you guys think? I think this collection is pretty great, actually! The names are cutesy, and kind of remind me of middle school, but then, that's probably the target audience. Nice colors, though!


Which polish is your favorite from Nicole by OPI's One Less Lonely Girl?



this product/products were sent to me to review. see disclosure policy for more information.

Nicole by OPI has a new brush!

Does this need it's own post? Not necessarily, but I know I'll forget as soon as I post the One Less Lonely Girl collection, so I'll just say it here! :D


Unfortunately, I don't have any old Nicole by OPI polishes with me right now, so I can't do a comparison shot, but I must say, I love this new brush!


Sorry for the crappy shot! Anyway, this one didn't look like it would be good when I first saw it, but it's terrific! It took me a second to get used to, but it's definitely an improvement over the old one!

Have you tried the new Nicole by OPI brush?

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

OPI Katy Perry Collection

Ever since I saw the press release for the OPI Katy Perry Collection, I was seriously excited for these polishes to come out! There are four polishes, co-created and inspired by Katy Perry songs, plus a black crackle topcoat Black Shatter, which I will review separately. Gotta admit, though, not all the polishes lived up to my expectations. See how you feel about them below!



Not Like the Movies is my favorite out of the collection, and that was a surprise for me. I was expecting a kind of sewage-y gray, but I was way wrong. Not Like the Movies is a silver duochrome polish with some shimmer and a metallic finish. The colors flash purple, green, and pink, which you can kind of see in the bottle shot to the right. I love love love this polish! It looks like it is super brushstroke-y in the picture, but in actuality it isn't streaky at all. I think if you pick up one polish from this collection, it should be this one. Not flashy in the least, but that color change it goes through is just so pretty! 3 coats.





Does The One That Got Away remind anyone else of jelly or something on the nail? It looks like some jam spread or something. Right? Well, maybe. It's a pretty berry-magenta shimmer, but nothing special to me. On the right the gold and purple shimmer is really obvious in the bottle, but on the nail it just doesn't transfer. It's a fun color, though, for someone who wants something kind of bright but not flashy. In the picture it looks like there are specks of dust or something on the nail, but it's justs the gold shimmer. 2 coats. Actually, this one kind of reminds me of Essie Showstopper, just because of the gold shimmer.




Okay, onto Last Friday Night. Wow. I am...disappointed. Really disappointed in this polish, for two reasons. One, I was expecting something FABULOUS. Look at the polish in the bottle?! Doesn't it look pretty! But on the nail, what is that? Two, this is just kind of a lame polish. Pretty pretty green and blue and silver glitter with larger, rounder particles. But the base is tinted clear. So really I guess this is a polish better suited for layering. Part of it was my own fault for letting myself get my hopes up, but this one just isn't doing it for me. I'll definitely try it over a bunch of other polishes, though, so tune in for that if you're interested. 2 coats. Just didn't feel like doing any more.



Teenage Dream is pretty similar to Last Friday Night, but pink. It seems to be denser, though. I did use three coats with this one, though. Again, has the potential to be fabulous if it had an opaque base, but it doesn't and it's not.



All in all, I was pretty disappointed with this collection. Not because the polishes are terrible, but they just aren't what I like/was hoping for. I'm not really big on layering, but I will definitely give these polishes a shot to be beautiful yet!

What do you guys think? Did you pick any up? If not, will you now? Tell me :)





Which polish is your favorite from OPI's Katy Perry Collection?




this product/products were sent to me to review. see disclosure policy for more information.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Shep loves snow...

If you don't feel like looking at pictures of my dog running around in the snow, now might be a good time to leave :D






Hand/nail care in winter


Here's a little confession I should make: I don't take care of my hands as well as I should. I mean, none of us does, probably, but I am seriously negligent. Year-round, in fact.

But I just got back from some intense snow shoveling and my hands are payin' for it. In the winter, obviously, skin is usually drier and chapped, but how do you ladies out there combat it?

For me, when I'm feeling particularly motivated, Burts Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream moisturizes the hell out of my cuticles! I use it on the skin all around my nails, too. Before I go to bed I just rub it on my skin and the next day my hands are definitely softer.



To keep the rest of my hands from cracking, I use Aveeno Intense Relief Hand Cream. This stuff is meant for hardcore dry skin, and it works. My mother and brother both use it, too. Supposedly it lasts 24 hours and through hand washing, but honestly, I wouldn't know the difference, so I couldn't tell you. For the dry skin on my face, I use the basic Aveeno lotion. They have stuff specifically for the face, but the regular lotion is gentle enough. I should


So...how do YOU take care of your skin? In winter, or in the other three seasons? If there are any good products you would recommend? Leave a comment! OR, leave a piece of advice here, and it could be the Beauty Tip of the Week!

A New Blog Feature: YOUR ADVICE HERE!

This may be a lame idea, but I'm throwing it out there! I thought it would be kind of neat for readers to share nail/beauty/body tips and tricks. I know I could always use advice, anyway.

So here's the deal: Leave your nail secrets/ideas/habits in a comment. Each week I'll pick one and post it on the top my sidebar, along with your name and site, if you have one. I'll also make a special tab at the top for each piece of advice we get. It can be anything basic, like a daily routine you have, or your philosophy on beauty itself, or anything in between! Silly, serious, unique, something common. Don't be shy, talk to us! I'll go first this week, just to break the ice. And then I wanna hear what you have to say! Post as many as you want, whenever you think of them :D

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

OPI Holiday Glow

So much stuff to do tomorrow...but before I go beddie-bye, here's one of my favorite polishes evaaa--OPI Holiday Glow. For the original review, click here! Of course, I cut my ring fingernail way too short and it looks kind of funny, but whatever.




Hot chocolate with glitter on your nails! Cool in theory, but in actual practice, that would probably be disgusting. And on that note, I might watch a weeeee bit of Law and Order: SVU and hit the sack.

I bought this product myself. see disclosure policy for more information.

China Glaze giveaway winners announced!

I know I sound like a broken record here, but thank you so much to all who entered! And there will be more in the future, I guarantee it!

First prize: Polished from Polished Performance
Second prize: Kendal from !Kendal
Third prize: Jenny from Polishology

Again, because of the success of this one, there will definitely be more just like it!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Update on the China Glaze Giveaway

First of all, thank you to everyone who entered! It really means a lot! :D

Secondly, the winners have been chosen using random.org. I have emailed them, and they have up to a week to claim their prizes, otherwise I will take the next three people that were chosen. Sound fair?

Have a great week, all!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

¡Survey!

Yeah, I stole this from Kellie at Also Known As...!

What is your dream job?
I'm really not sure, to be honest. Something fun, dealing with people. It sounds naïve, but I really want to help someone. If I become a nurse, I want to give shots...not sure why.



What is your fragrance for winter?
I don't really wear fragrances. Wish I had like a signature scent.


How do you like your tea/coffee?
Tea: Black
Coffee: Half & Half and Splenda


I hated coffee forEVER, but both my parents are addicted, so when other family members came over, who are all similarly addicted, we all sat around and drank coffee.


What is your most important beauty secret?
I'm not really the person to ask...ha. But I would have to say, do whatever makes you happy. Don't just do what everyone else is doing; if you want to wear blue lipgloss, do it dammit, and work it!


If you had an all-expenses paid vacation, where would you go?
Tons of places around the world. I would have to think about that one.


If a genie popped up in your lap right now and offered you three wishes, what would they be?
1. That we are all safe, happy, and healthy.
2. Unlimited wishes (I know, unfair, but hey, they're my wishes, right? haha.)
3. That they stop playing that horrible Kay Jewelers commercial with the storm and the cabin and the guy says something like, ''In all our years coming here, I've never seen a storm like this,'' and the lady jumps and the thunder.


If you could only have breakfast, lunch, dinner or dessert foods for the rest of your life, which would you pick?
Dinner. Because you can have breakfast for dinner. And dessert can kinda be part of dinner, too. Right? Man, I'm all about the loopholes today.


If you were Hello Kitty, what color hairbow would you wear?
Studded with pink diamonds.


What is your biggest make-up pet peeve?
When little twelve year olds pile on the eyeliner and mascara because everyone else is piling on the eyeliner and the mascara. They're so young and I think their natural beauty is the best. Wow, I sound like an old lady haha.


If you could only wear one piece of jewelery for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Hm. For now, it'd be my ruby ring my parents gave me.


What one talent do you wish you had?
Speak tons of languages fluently.


Which product will you continue to repurchase?
Nail polish! Haha.


If you could look into the future, would you? And what would you like to know?
Maybe in a moment of weakness I would like to look, but I feel like it's just better the natural way. As Harold and Kumar say, ''The universe tends to unfold as it should.''


Who is your biggest celebrity crush? (include pictures)
Oh, my. Well, David Beckham. Cliché, but that's okay. I think I may have a teeny crush on Victoria, too ;D


And Milo Ventimiglia, especially as Jess Mariano from Gilmore Girls.


And, if I'm being honest, Alexis Bledel. I wouldn't call it a crush, I just think she's absolutely gorgeous.


What made you start a blog?
I love nail polish, I love reading other nail blogs, and I love to ramble. Presto! Aurora's Nails was born!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Polish Swatch Inventory

And, just as a heads up, I made an inventory of every polish I've swatched and reviewed. You can find it in my pages at the top, or just click this link! Just thought it might be helpful if you're searching for one particular polish and don't feel like going through all the labels.


:D

Brrr! And Formspring!

Nothing like bundling up on a cold night like tonight with my special recipe of hot chocolate and Toy Story. Okay, okay, so my secret recipe is regular Swiss Miss powder and milk with Tollhouse semi-sweet chips added in. I never claimed to be Emeril here.


But for those who care, I just made a Formspring account. There's also a gadget on my sidebar in case you're interested. Exciting stuff.


Daisy and Lily have the right idea...sorry for the crappy photo quality, but it's pretty dark in here.


PS, I forgot how funny Toy Story is when you're not watching it in the movie theater as a six year old! Hahaha!

Two Claire's Polishes

I'd never tried Claire's nail polish before...although I did get my ears pierced there many moons ago. But my sweet friend over at Nail Junkie sent me two polishes in a swap, along with some KONAD, which I am still attempting to master.


First up is Neon Burst. Now, above is a picture of three coats on bare nail--kind of streaky. BUT, over a white polish, it becomes opaque and smooth.
I wish I could show you on all four fingers, but I nicked three out of four nails and didn't have time to repaint. Above is one coat of OPI Alpine Snow and two coats of Neon Burst. I love this color...it reminds me of aerosol cheese, which I find completely disgusting. It's just a fun, bright, wacky color!



And now we're looking at Morning in Malibu, which is a fun, punchy pink. I have to keep my eye on this one, because I know my mother will try to snatch this one from me! This is two coats, and it applies very smooth. It has a very slight frost quality to it I think, but it isn't brushtroke-y. And nice and tropical, perfect for these yucky days with ice and snow.


Do you guys own any Claire's polishes? I was surprised by their high quality!

these products were given to me in a swap. see disclosure policy for more information

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Spam-A-Link!

Like Spam-A-Lot? Get it? Lame, lame title. But here's the deal: I love reading new (or new to me) blogs. I do, I do, I do, OOH! (Kenan & Kel, anyone? Orange soda? Okay, then.)

So spam me, dammit! If you have a blog and you'd like me to check it out, please leave the link in a comment and I'll add you to my blogroll! I know some people do this in other comments, but I either miss them, or forget to add them...so I'm taking a cue from the super fabulous Scandalously Polished and encouraging you to leave your website below :D


I'll be honest: if you've left your website in a comment before, there's a good chance I haven't added you to my blogroll. So do it here, and you'll never have to do it again!

China Glaze Naughty and Nice Comparisions [Part 2 of 2]

Brrr, it's nasty outside! A little snowfall followed by ice...the perfect recipe for a lazy, indoor day watching Christmas movies, right? But before all that ensues, let's take a look at the rest of the comparisons I have for the China Glaze Naughty or Nice Collection! Check out the first half here.


China Glaze Snow vs. OPI Alpine Snow. Both are basic white, but Snow is slightly softer and more muted. Alpine Snow applies better, in my opinion.



China Glaze Midnight Kisses vs. OPI Glitzerland. Midnight Kisses is more gold, whereas Glitzerland is a blonde, champagne color. Midnight Kisses is two coats, and Glitzerland takes three.
Here shows off a gold-er side of both polishes.



On the middle finger is China Glaze Naughty or Nice, with Color Club Ready to Royal on the left and OPI William Tell Me About OPI on the right. My favorite out of the three is Naughty or Nice, with its jelly texture. It's hard to describe the difference between the three, so below is a shot of each with one coat, to show the base hues.
It reminds me of three jams or something; Ready to Royal is grape, Naughty or Nice is strawberry, and William Tell Me About OPI is raspberry. And now I'm kinda hungry.



Middle finger is China Glaze Little Drummer Boy, with Entity Blue on the left and OPI Russian Navy on the right. Let's just say something right now: GORGEOUS. I love each of these polishes. It's really a personal preference. Blue is glittery, Little Drummer Boy is denim-y, and Russian Navy is almost burple, with a red shimmer.



China Glaze Cheers to You vs. FingerPaints Sparkling Snow. I definitely prefer Cheers to You on this one; it's more dense and foil-y, plus it only takes two coats, whereas Sparkling Snow takes three coats and isn't as shiny.



And finally, we have Jolly Holly vs. Np2 Atomic. Two great polishes; Jolly Holly is a truer green, and only takes one coat. Atomic takes two coats and has a more mossy quality, but it's a duochrome, so that's pretty neat. I would call them different enough that you could own both and not consider them dupes.


Well, that's all, folks! PS: the winner of the giveaway will be announced later today!

some of these products were provided for review; i bought some of these product/products myself. see disclosure policy for more information

Clarification: Coty Inc. Information

For those that read my post regarding the issue of Coty Inc. testing on animals, it may have appeared that I was stating for a fact that they do not test on animals, because I stupidly titled it "Coty Inc. does not test on animals.'' In reality, I was quoting the letter that I received when I inquired with Coty Inc. customer service. Coty Inc. does admit to testing on animals, however:

Our research and development team has pioneered safety tests and alternative testing methods in order to eliminate the need for animal testing.  However, there may be rare occurrences when a government or regulatory agency may indicate to the Cosmetic Industry that an animal study is necessary, where no validated alternative exists, to ensure consumer protection for a component of our products.  In such cases, the need for testing is carefully examined by our Industry and if the test must be performed, it is strictly controlled. 

If you haven't already, I encourage you to read the entire response letter here. I apologize for any confusion this may have caused, as I in NO way wanted to misrepresent the facts!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Coty Inc. says they do not conduct animal testing.

Coty Inc. does not conduct animal testing. That is the response I got when I personally emailed Coty Inc. inquiring. Just thought I'd pass along the information they sent me. As some readers have pointed out, it sends a mixed message of sorts. Read the entire letter I received below.


We at Coty Inc. share your respect for life, and we are committed to maintaining the highest possible standards of human safety while eliminating the need for testing on animals. 



Coty Inc. does not conduct animal testing.  This is accomplished by selecting raw materials of the highest quality with well-established safety records and using extensive ingredient databases, in-vitro testing, computer modeling and studies with human volunteers.  In fact, to ensure human safety all our products are clinically tested as needed on humans before they are sold in the marketplace. 



Our research and development team has pioneered safety tests and alternative testing methods in order to eliminate the need for animal testing.  However, there may be rare occurrences when a government or regulatory agency may indicate to the Cosmetic Industry that an animal study is necessary, where no validated alternative exists, to ensure consumer protection for a component of our products.  In such cases, the need for testing is carefully examined by our Industry and if the test must be performed, it is strictly controlled. 



Coty Inc. has been actively involved in the search for alternative testing methods for many years and we support industry research programs such as those conducted by the Johns Hopkins University Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing, the European Chemical Industry Ecology and Toxicology Centre (ECETOC), the European Cosmetic, Toiletry and Perfumery Association (COLIPA) and the Personal Care Products Council (PCPC)  

China Glaze Naughty and Nice Comparisions [Part 1 of 2]

Sixteen colors in one collection is a lot, so it's natural that there'd be some dupage goin' on, but this collection is actually pretty unique, among my own stash, anyway. Certainly there are other similar colors out there, I just don't own them. For great comparisons, head on over to Nihrida, who is terrific, by the way.



First we have Mommy Kissing Santa (left) and China Glaze Heart of Africa (right.)
Heart of Africa has more purple in it, but if you have one, you probably don't need the other.



Next we have Ruby Deer (left) and Color So Hot It Berns (right.) Color So Hot It Berns is bright, but looks dusty compared to Ruby Deer.



Last for tonight, we have Phat Santa (left) and Ruby Deer (right.) I'm pretty sure I could stop with the left and right labels at this point, but I like continuity. Anyway, Phat Santa is deeper, but I really don't need both.
And above is a horrendous, lopsided, flashy bottle shot, just to show how similar they are.


Anyway, that's all I got for tonight. Now I'm about to eat some pork dumplings with the fambam and bundle up against the incoming snowstorm!

some of these products were provided for review; i bought some of these product/products myself. see disclosure policy for more information

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

China Glaze Party Hearty layered

Party Hearty is a a fun polish, but some would prefer it layered over an opaque polish, myself included.

Two coats of Party Hearty over G2 Organics DarkOPI Alpine SnowChina Glaze Jolly Holly, and OPI Color So Hot It Berns.

China Glaze Naughty and Nice Collection [Part 4 of 4]

Over a week without posting? I'm kinda going through withdrawal here! So I finally have the last part of the China Glaze Naughty and Nice Collection below...some of my favorites from the collection!


Oh, and I couldn't decide to post them diagonally or horizontally, so I posted both.


Little Drummer Boy is a fabulous blue shimmer. In real life it reminds me of my dark-wash jeans.
Best of all? This is one coat!




Jolly Holly is a gorgeous deep emerald shimmer. Soooo pretty!
Like Little Drummer Boy, it was a one-coater, but I nicked one finger, so I ended up putting two coats on every nail.




Party Hearty is probably the most popular polish of this whole collection, and I can see why. It's pretty spectacular, really. It's got a clear base with silver glitter and red and green hexagon glitter pieces. Super fun and appropriate for the holidays!
 Above is one coat on the pinkie, up to four coats on the index finger.




And now, la pièce de résistance! Oh, my dear freaking goodness do I love Frosty! I've been searching for a polish like this, and when I saw it in the Naughty and Nice promos, I was praying it was just as wonderful as I'd hoped--it was. A milky white base with shimmery white.
Above is three coats; if you use thin coats, you might need four, but I used thicker ones for this polish.
And yeah, one more picture. I loved it so much I had to run out and get my own bottle of it! I mean, how could I not?!


And that concludes the China Glaze 'Tis the Season to be Naughty and Nice Collection! I think this was a terrific collection; something for everybody, I think. Now, if you haven't entered the giveaway yet, you have until December 16 at 12:00 AM! And don't forget to check out the first three parts of the collection!

Part One
Part Two
Part Three

Comparisons coming soon!

i bought this/these product/products myself. see disclosure policy for more information.

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