Monday, January 31, 2011

Blog Sale Update

Hi everyone... I wanted to do a quick post about my blog sale. I am in the process of adding MANY more polishes. Probably 100+. I'm finding myself less and less attached to my stash and I'd rather they go to good homes than collect dust.

Also, I mentioned this on my blog sale page, but as I'm not so tied to my stash anymore, I may have, and be willing to part with, a particular polish you are looking for. So, please ask me.  I may just have it.  :)  FYI... I don't have Essie SSN or Clarins 230.  :(  LOL.

Lastly, if you see some polishes that you want, but you want to wait until I've finished listing all my polishes, that's no problem.  Just email me what you are interested in and I will hold them until I've completed my list (should be by the end of the week).

Thanks for looking :)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Press Release: Misa Wishes

I just saw this on Misa's Twitter page, and I must say it sounds really promising...


Press Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

When You Wish Upon a Star…You Get the Ethereal Shades in Misa Cosmetics’ Wishes Collection
January 2011 – Philadelphia, PA. From Harry Potter to vampire drama, no one can resist a little fantasy in life, an escape from the everyday. Usually, going from the doldrums of reality to fantastical imaginings on cloud nine takes a little effort, but Misa Cosmetics makes the flight exceptionally easier with the Wishes Collection, six pie-in-the-sky hues that evoke otherworldly beauty with delicate shimmer and alluring iridescence. Thanks to these gorgeous shades—all satin matte with sparkling effect finishes—you’ll be ready to believe in magic again!

Spring 2011: Wishes Collection

Never Say Never: All you have to do is believe—in this frosted ice-princess silvery white, that is—and your nails will transform as you never thought possible. Never say never; just enjoy the cool effect of painting your nails the color of falling snow in moonlight.
Pixie Princess: Fairies are known for their playful, mischievous demeanors, and you won’t find a shade more naughty-but-nice than this soft beige with the subtlest sheen of glitter. It’s no folklore—this delicate hue instantly gets your nails ready to soar above the earth.
Touch the Rainbow: Like a sky after a rainstorm, this baby blue suggests a sense of peace, tranquility and calm. And, just as a rainbow shows off its spectrum of colors, this shade offers an ever-changing opalescent sheen that takes nails to unbelievable heights. Forget the pot of gold; grab this lacquer instead.
Fountain of Youth: We’d all love the ability to renounce the effects of aging, but this shimmering pastel will never grow old on your nails. With a hint of the sheerest springtime green, this polish makes any look brand-new again. Drink in the color and indulge in lasting longevity.
Genie in This Bottle: Do you dream of genies? Once you unleash the fairytale wish-granter from his magic lamp, you’ll never experience life in the same way again. But as you contemplate your three wishes, you might want to make one of them a request for this glittering lilac—it’s one wish that will never backfire!
Whimsical Wish: Blow out the candles, wish upon a star or toss a penny in the fountain. Whatever your method of securing your greatest desires, ensure that your nails are eminently wish-worthy with this pearl shade shot through with pink iridescent undertones.

Not sure if you can see from the picture, these colors have a satin matte with a twist of sparkles finish




























Images and release are from Misa's Facebook page.  

Press Release: Orly Precious

I know this press release made the rounds on the blogs yesterday, but Orly's PR firm sent me some high-resolution images, so I thought I would pass them on.  Be sure to enlarge 'em.  They look amazing.  

All descriptions are from Orly's press release (which I will post below).   


Sapphire Silk: Deep Teal Crème
Pure Porcelain: Beige Crème

 Royal Velvet: Purple Blue Shimmer
Fancy Fuchsia: Pink Crème


Ancient Jade: Green Crème
Gilded Coral: Coral Gold Shimmer



Precious
ORLY Spring 2011 Collection
Luxurious, Sophisticated Hues to Covet

For centuries, people around the globe have been enamored with lush fabrics, rare stones and extravagant finishes.  ORLY celebrates the refined glamour of porcelain, the vibrant sheen of silk, and the lush sparkle of priceless gems with Precious.  Lend a sense of romance and richness to every spring ensemble by sporting lavish shades on fingertips and toes.  The six lacquers in the Precious Collection signal a fresh approach to spring fashion and a renewed appreciation for the exotic workmanship, ornamental engravings, and sumptuous fabrics known to accompany the luxe life. 

The six Lacquers in the Precious Collection include:
Pure Porcelain: Beige Crème
Gilded Coral: Coral Gold Shimmer
Fancy Fuchsia: Pink Crème
Ancient Jade: Green Crème
Sapphire Silk: Deep Teal Crème
Royal Velvet: Purple Blue Shimmer

All ORLY Nail Lacquers including the Precious Collection are free of DBP, Toluene and all traces of Formaldehyde and Formaldehyde Resin.

The Precious Collection Lacquers will be available starting March 2011 for $7.50 each.  ORLY Nail Lacquers and Treatment products are available at orlybeauty.com, Sally Beauty, Ulta and other purveyors of beauty throughout the U.S. and in over 70 countries worldwide.



Images provided by Orly's PR firm

Thursday, January 27, 2011

OPI Katy Perry Collection

Almost a month after I brought you my first post on OPI's new crackle topcoat, Black Shatter, I'm finally able to review the complete Katy Perry collection.  FYI, as each polish has 2 looks, one without the Black Shatter and one with it, I've put the "without" picture above my description and the "with" picture below it.  Also, all pictures of Black Shatter, save for The One that Got Away + Black Shatter have a top coat of Seche Vite.


Last Friday Night - Blue, green, and holo glitter in a watery, pale blue, clear base.  This glitter is very pretty, but unlike Teenage Dream, I wasn't a fan of it alone.  It would look great as a layering polish or under Black Shatter (below).  It seemed rather washed out by its lonesome, though.  2 coats.

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Not Like the Movies - Grey/pink/green/purple/kitchen sink multichrome frost with microglitter shimmer.  This color is amazing.  Normally, grey-based duo/multichromes don't really do much for me.  They have a tendency to give me corpse hands.  Plus, while I love them in the bottle, they kind of disappoint on the nail (I fully realize this is not a normal sentiment)  In fact, I blog-sold Lippmann Wicked Game for that exact reason. Yet, Not Like the Movies was a total win.  The best thing about it is the twinkle of the microglitter.  Unlike other frost + glitter combos (i.e. Color Club Ms. Hautie and, to a lesser extent, Barielle Jess' Champagne Toast), the glitter doesn't get lost in this one.  It's as beautiful in the bottle as it is on the nail.  I also happens to look fantastic with Black Shatter (below).  The only downside to this polish is the thinness of the formula.  It takes 4 coats to reach total opacity.  Pic is 4 coats.

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Teenage Dream - Pale pink and holo glitter in a slightly-pink tinted clear base.  This is a total princess polish. Seriously.  It was like a cupcake exploded on my nails.  And I mean that in a good way.  :)  The holo glitter in this look like little disco balls.  There is something both edgy and yet very ethereal about this polish.  Of the 2 glitters, this is my favorite.  I love the juxtoposition between the princessness of Teenage Dream and the badass look of Black Shatter (below).  2 coats.  

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The One that Got Away - Bright magenta-red foily metallic.  Like OMB! from the Justin Beiber collection, this one really reminded me of the 6 metallics from OPI's Holiday 2010 Burlesque collection.  The only difference being that The One that Got Away has microglitter hidden in the shimmer.  Also, if you look at this in the bottle you see a faint golden shift.  Sadly, this does not translate to the nail.  But, it's a gorgeous color, nonetheless.  Like all the polishes from the Katy Perry collection, it is a bit thin, but nothing unworkable.  3 coats.






















I apologize for the craptastic picture of The One that Got Away with Black Shatter.  I messed up my middle finger (word to the wise, 2 coats of Black Shatter = Bad).  Plus, I forgot to add the topcoat (but atleast you can see what it looks like matte).  I think this is my least favorite with the Black Shatter topper, but it's still a nice contrast.

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All in all, I think this is a nice collaboration with Katy Perry.  It seems very reflective of her personal style... girly with an edge.  I didn't like the thinness of all the colors.  I mean, it was doable, it's just I'm a 2-coat-girl, and each of these were 3+.  Again, not a problem... just not my preference.  My favorites were Teenage Dream (big surprise) and Not Like the Movies, but they are all pretty colors.

My biggest frustration?  Black Shatter.  Now, I've used it in my previous sneak peek of Not Like the Movies and in part one of the Serena Williams collection and had little problem, but I swear, this time around, it drove me a little nuts.  It's very different than other crackle topcoats I've tried.  You have to make sure you have not too little and yet, not too much on your brush.  You also have to move quickly.  It's less forgiving than other crackle topcoats, IMO.  It's not a bad thing, and I'm by no means saying not to get it, as it does get better with practice, but there is a bit of a learning curve in using Black Shatter.  At least there was for me.  Of course, that could be user error.  :P

OPI Katy Perry collection is out now.  It has become a bit scarce at e-tailers, though I've heard it's now at Ulta.  Also, I did see it on Amazon.  As far as I know, no word yet on if it will be restocked or if shipments are one and done.

OPI retails for $8.50.

These were sent to me for review

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Orly Wants to be Your Valentine

Okay, normally, I hate Valentine's Day.  Well, I hate the sentiment behind Valentine's Day.  I suppose it was my years toiling around in bitter singledom that created such cynicism, but even now that I've been married almost 10 years, Valentine's Day isn't a concept I can get behind.  The concept just seems so cheesy.  However, I love going through the aisles of Valentine's Day-themed merchandise at big boxes.  I love big pink hearts filled with candy and hot pink stuffed teddy bears.  I suppose it's the little girl in me, but I can't get enough of that stuff.  I don't buy it because my house is a big as a tic-tac, but I do love looking at it.  :)

So when I received this press release from Orly announcing their re-promote of several reds and pinks for Valentine's Day, I was immediately intrigued...



Find an Eye Catching Polish from ORLY to Love this Valentine’s Day

Look fabulous and treat yourself without the calories this Valentine’s Day with ORLY nail polish. ORLY offers saucy and sexy lacquers to add polish to any date or girls’ night out in a flash. When the chocolates are eaten and the roses are wilted, these pretty pinks and seductive reds are here to stay, providing instant glam throughout the year.  



All ORLY Nail Lacquers retail for $7.50 each and are free of DBP and all traces of Toluene and Formaldehyde. ORLY Nail Lacquers and Treatment products are available at orlybeauty.com, Sally Beauty and Ulta. 

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In addition to the press release, Orly's PR firm was nice enough to provide me with 2 of the colors from this release, Kiss the Bride and Red Flare...


Kiss the Bride - Soft baby pink creme.  Normally, I'm opposed to pastels.  I like them in theory, but most of the time, they are so sheer and streaky that I usually give up and give them to my mom.  You normally have to do 4+ coats and by that point, it's so gloopy, you'll never get it to set.  This one, on the other hand, is nicely pigmented and the formula is thick enough that this could be a 2-coater if you used a sticky base coat.  3 coats.



















Red Flare - BRIGHT, pink-leaning red creme.  Okay, the problem with red cremes is that the nail polish market is so saturated with them that there may be a fantastic one out there that you'd never even think to try. This is one of those polishes.  Judging from the PR picture, I would have thought it to be a deep burgundy, but it was a total surprise, and it's awesome.  It's a bright almost-true red, but it leans a bit pink.  I think it's a perfect Valentine's Red.  The great thing about this one is that if you used a sticky base coat and were very careful in your strokes, it could be a 1-coater.  Formula was flawless.  2 coats.

I know sometimes re-promotes are a bit annoying.  You think it's going to be new stuff, but it's polishes already in the core line.  However, I think it's also a great way to try a new polish you may have never even thought about.  I know I wouldn't have picked up Kiss the Bride or Red Flare on my own.  They both seem pretty normal and commonplace, but in reality, they are both great polishes with Red Flare being one of the best reds in my collection.

You can find Orlys, including these polishes, at online e-tailers, including Orly's website, and at Sally Beauty.

These were sent to me for review

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Orly Turquoise Charm

I saw this polish awhile back on a nail blog and fell in love.  I think the blog was ALU, but I can't find the post or the picture on her wesbite now, so I can't be certain.  Unfortunately, finding discontinued Orlys, unlike OPIs, can be a bit hit or miss.  If you aren't willing to dusty-hunt, then you have to bide your time and hope at some point, it shows up on eBay or in a swap/blog sale.  It's been well-over a year since I first created in eBay search for this polish (closer to 2 years), and I finally was able to snag it.  :)

The color is a pale, shimmery turquoise with a faint blue shift.  The color is beautiful, but as this polish is several years old, it was part of Orly's 2004 Year in Rocks collection, it is old formula and rather thin.  It took 4 coats to reach almost-opacity (I say that because you can still see faint VNLs).  Also, I had horrible drag on this.  Because of the thinness, you'll need to wait until each coat is almost dry before applying another coat.  Thankfully, it dries quickly and because it's so thin, it can support 4 coats.

Usually, I try to avoid posting HTF-lemming creating polishes as I know it sucks when you see something, want it, and then either can't find it or have to take out a second mortgage to pay jacked up eBay prices.  Thankfully, this one (and several of the other d/c'd colors from Year in Rocks) is available from an eBay seller, strawberryfieldsforever029 (link goes to their storefront), for a very reasonable price (less than $6 + shipping).  I had a really good experience with this seller, my polish arrived in just a couple of days. 

If you are interested in the listing for Turquoise Charm, click here.  Also, there is a UK seller listing it as well (though I have no experience to add).  The US based auction, ends tomorrow, however. 

Lastly, and I'm only posting this because I think the collection is so cute, with each polish based on a birthmonth's gemstone, here's a listing of all the polishes in the collection... just in case you want to find yours (and no, mine's not turquoise)...

January - Garnet Truth
February - Amethyst Decadence
March - Aquamarine Bliss
April - Diamond Love
May - Emerald Life
June - Pearl Wisdom
July - Ruby Passion
August - Peridot Courage
September - Sapphire Luck
October - Opal Hope
November - Citrine Cheer
December - Turquoise Charm

Friday, January 21, 2011

New Tattoo

Last Saturday, I got a tattoo.  I've been tweeting about this for days, so I figured I'd go on and post it on the blog.  Anyway, it here it is...


















It's mostly healed, with just a little bit of the skin still recovering (in the Aries symbol).  It's about 3"x2" an on my left wrist.  It's my very first one, and I don't know if I see myself getting more.  The pain was un-(excuse me)-fucking-real.  Seriously.  I knew it would hurt and I'd heard it being compared to a "bee sting", but that was one big ass bee that just sat on my wrist.  :/  LOL.  

I got it for a simple reason... to be a reminder of the promises I made to myself at the beginning of the year.  It's to remind myself that I need to change.  Hence the butterfly wings.  Plus, I'm a hot-headed, impulsive, bitchy Aries, so I thought it was perfect.  :)

At first, I hated it.  I noticed every little imperfection and I was so afraid that I'd made a bad decision, because it was larger than I wanted and quite frankly, felt like I'd put my arm in a blender.  Now at a week out, I must say that I love it.  :)

As for those promises?  As of yesterday morning, I'd lost 12 lbs!  Still a LONG way to go, but it's a start. 

Friday Blogger Round Up

As promised, here is the latest intallment of Friday Blogger Round Up...

Narc Nails

Pretty N Polished Nails

Pink Holic

Painting 'Em Up

Lacquered Mom

Diary of a Polish Addict

Sürmeden Çıkmam!

My LIttle Vanities

Once Bitten

Okay, I think that's everyone!  Nine new blogs to check out!  If I missed you, please email/tweet me or reply in this message and I will add you. 

As always, if you'd like to be in the next blogger round up, please let me know.  I am happy to include any nail polish/beauty blog (new, old, on my blog roll, doesn't matter :P).  So let me know if you'd like to be listed.

Thanks! and Happy Reading!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Nicole by OPI Liquid Metals

Hi all, I'm so sorry to have such a delay in picture posts, but sometimes my crazy life gets in the way.  LOL.  Anyway, I still OPI Katy Perry to show you as well as Zoya Intimate (both of which should be up by early next week), but for right now, I have the Nicole by OPI Liquid Metals collection.

Liquid Metals is another small collection by Nicole by OPI.  When I first read the press release info regarding this collection, I have to admit that I wasn't terribly excited by it.  Honestly, the descriptions reminded me of China Glaze's Spring 2009 Romantiques collection.  Which if you don't know, Romantiques was a collection of 12 frosty metallic polishes.  They are pretty and perfect for konadding, but given the recent influx of frosts, I was a little wary about another frost-based collection.

Turns out... I needn't be worried.  :)  FYI... As the finish on all these is identical (the only difference is the color), I'm going to post pics and color descriptions first and then I'm going to run my mouth (fingers?) later.

It Starts With Me - pink-champagne metallic shimmer.

Miss Independent - Pale pink-lavender metallic shimmer.

Rich In Spirit - Icy pale blue-green metallic shimmer.

The Next CEO - Pale gold metallic shimmer.

As you can see... they aren't frosts.  Rather, they are shimmer metallics, much like the Orly Foil FX collection from last year.  The difference being between Liquid Metals and Foil FX is that this collection doesn't have as bright of a foily finish to the polishes.  Because of the this, the colors are much less bright and more toned-down.  I must say, I prefer this.  While It Starts With Me and The Next CEO aren't too terribly original in color, they do take a different spin on rose-gold and gold metallic polishes, respectively.  On the other hand, Miss Independent and Rich In Spirit, seem pretty unique to me (which means off the top of my head, I can't think of anything dupey).  I'm absolutely in love with both of these polishes.  Purpley-pink metallic and silvery blue-green metallic?  Come on... you had me at hello.  LOL.  They are both my must-haves in this collection.

From what I can recall (I took these over a week ago), I pretty sure these are all 3 coats each.  IIRC, they went on a little thin.

Nicole by OPI is available at big boxes, drug stores, and Ulta, and from what I gather this isn't an exclusive collection, so they should be pretty easy to find.  Nicoles are usually $7-8.

These were sent to me for review

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Quick Update

Hey girls... I know it's been almost a week since I've posted and I hate going more than 2 days without a post, so I thought I'd post a little update.  :)  The twins turned 5 on Sunday, so I was crazy busy due to that, plus, Amelia decided she'd "borrow" my camera, and I just now found it.  :\  I should have OPI Katy Perry and one more Nicole (can't think of the name) collection, up for you soon. 

Also, I plan on doing a Friday Blogger Round up this Friday, so if you'd like to be included, please reply in this post. 

Friday, January 14, 2011

Nicole by OPI Walmart Exclusives

It seems that there have been a flurry of Nicole/OPI new releases lately.  I still have OPI Katy Perry to review and one more new Nicole collection (the name escapes me right now).  Plus, there is OPI Texas coming out next month.  OPI has been busy little bees.  :)

Today I have for you a small, Walmart-exclusive Nicole by OPI collection.  As far as I know, it doesn't have a specific collection name.


Count on Me - Opalescent shimmer topcoat.  This one is predominately purple, though there are flashes of pink and blue.  Though I have none to compare, it reminds me of the CND Effects.  This one is very pretty, and probably my favorite of this small collection.  This is 2 coats on naked nails, though this is great for layering (see below), or even as a top coat over a french mani.  


Got Style? - Frosty, shimmery, brown-mauve metallic.  I am not a hard person to please.  Really.  I'm not.  But this polish just didn't work for me.  It's just too frosty.  It reminds me of OPI Kimono'ver here (which I lemmed forever only to discover I hated it).  All that said... I know my mom will love this.  So, if you like frosts and you are looking for a brown-pink, this might be right up your alley.  2 coats.



He's a Keeper - Red creme.  This one is a shade or two darker than what I consider a classic red (in my mind, that's a true, pin-up red), but it's still very pretty.  But, it's a red creme, still.  Nice, but nothing to write home about.  2 coats.  

He's a Keeper layered under Count on Me - As a light purple gloss over a bright red lipstick is one of my favorite combinations ever, I wondered what a light purple sparkle topcoat would look like over this red creme.  Turns out... it really works.  




















Never Give Up - Bright fuchsia frost with holo micro glitter.  This one was so pretty in the bottle, but it just didn't work on the nail.  The frosty base is too dense for the glitter (kinda like CC Ms. Hautie).  2 coats

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Count on Me was the star of the show, as far as I'm concerned.  He's a Keeper was nice, but safe.  The two other polishes in this collection, Got Style? and Never Give Up were just too frosty for me.  

This collection is available at Walmart.  

These were sent to me for review.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

OPI Glam Slam collection (pt.1 - Simply Smashing)

FYI... I am sorry in advance if this post seems a bit disjointed, my spawn had me up at 5am, so I figured I'd constructively waste time by reviewing polish.  LOL.

It seems like we are getting a lot of celebrity collaboration collections lately.  Glam Slam is among those collections, as it's OPI's collaboration with tennis star (and nail technician) Serena Williams.  Glam Slam is an 8 piece collection, but unlike most other collections, it will be released in 2-polish sets, with release dates coinciding with each of the 4 Grand Slam Tennis Tournaments (Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon, and US Open).  Simply Smashing is the first of those releases.  It consists of one polish, Simply Smashing and one top coat, Black Shatter.



















Simply Smashing - Sparkling yellow-green foil metallic.  As soon as OPI sent out their PR info regarding both the Serena Williams and Katy Perry collections, this polish is the one that first caught my eye, and I really can't tell you why.  I guess because it's such a unique color (it really looks like a shiny tennis ball).  If you happened to like the 2 greens from OPI's summer 2010 release Shrek Forever, Who the Shrek Are You? and Fiercely Fiona, you will probably love this.  It's like a perfect marriage between the two, only all glammed up.  Unfortunately, while I love the color, I don't really think it works with my skin, at least not alone (see below).  Pic is 4 coats, as the formula was quite sheer (though buildable).  


Black Shatter - Rubbery-finish black crack top coat.  I know there are several crackle topcoats now on the market and more to come, with China Glaze's upcoming Crackle collection, but this one seems to differ a little bit in the finish in that it definitely shatters more than crackles.  It almost looks more like animal print rather than the cracked-window look of most crackle top coats.  Black shatter is being marketed with both the Serena Williams collection and the Katy Perry collection, and I must say that I really love it over Simply Smashing.  It is recommended that you apply Black Shatter over dry nails for optimum "shattering", but in all honesty, I applied it over semi-dry nails and got fine results.  It dries completely matter, though with a tad bit of rubbery-ness to it, so unless you want it to flake off, you'll probably need to use a topcoat.  The pic above is with TC on both my middle finger and my pinky and no TC on my ring finger.  

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All in all, I really like this first offering from the Glam Slam collection.  In addition to using it under Black Shatter, I would love to see Simply Smashing as a base for a black and white konad design (must work on that soon).  Also, I think I like this one because when I was 13-14 yrs old, I became obsessed with tennis.  I blame Jennifer Capriati and Andre Agassi.  LOL. I couldn't play to save my life (you need better hand-eye coordination than what I bring to the table :P), but I read the tennis magazines, knew all the stats, and watched every.single.tournament I could catch without cable.  In fact, remember needing to watch Wimbledon so bad that I'd sneak into the quiet, out-of-the-way waiting rooms (at the hospital where I volunteered the summer before ninth grade) just so I could watch it.  

I can't wait to see what the other 3 offerings in this collection will bring.  I'm sure with Serena Williams involved, they will be great and a little on the edge (just like Simply Smashing).

I know OPI has announced there is some delay in this collection, but it should be out by the end of this month.

These were sent to me for review

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Zoya Zanna





















Zoya Zanna is a medium tea-rose creme, though in certain light (fluorescent) it has a tendency to lean purple.  I'm not sure about this one, if I'm being honest.  The color is beautiful and the formula was great, but it seems very mom to me.  2 coats.

UPDATE (1/13/11, 2:50p) - I have had this on since last night and I can't get it off my nails fast enough.

Nicole by OPI One Less Lonely Girl Collection

Unless you've been living under a rock, you've probably heard about this collection, which was a collaboration with Justin Beiber (or at least with his handlers).  

Now, I know very little about Justin Beiber.  I know he's the latest teen phenom.  I know his fans have a tendency to be a little rabid.  I know his hair drives me batshit, and I know I'm older than his mom :\ (yeah, that was a kick in the pants).  However, I do know that this collection, which could have become very gimmicky, actually turned out pretty cool. 

Supposedly, all these polishes have names inspired by his songs.  I think I know of one Justin Beiber song, the one with Usher that has me singing "baby, baby, baby, oh" all day long, so the names seem a little foreign to me, but other than that (which is the gimmicky part), the collection is rather solid.


Give Me the 1st Dance - Silver foil metallic.  Pretty standard, but this one is a little different in that the silver is a little muted.  It's not a matte by any means, but it's not as flashy, as say, Orly Shine.  Formula was very nice.  2 coats.  


Me + Blue - Marine blue shimmer base with holo micro-glitter.  When I first saw this one in the bottle, it probably was the one I was the least excited about.  For one, it reminded me of a Fingerpaints glitter, which looked beautiful in the bottle, but was a total fail on the nail.  Secondly, the base is a little frosty, so I was a little afraid of this being like Color Club Ms. Hautie, with the glitter getting lost in the base.  Surprisingly, this polish far surpassed my low expectations.  The base is very dense, so it was opaque in 2 coats.  Also, while it is a bit frosty, it's also not a problem.  Formula was great as well.  


My Lifesaver - Blue-based mint green creme.  This one wasn't in the original PR info from Nicole, so it was a complete surprise, and probably my favorite of the collection.  It's a minty green (actually, probably more of a seafoam green) that actually works with my skin.  Formula was a bit on the thin side.  Pic is 3 coats.  


OMB! - True-red foil metallic.  This one really reminded me of the foil metallics in OPI's Holiday 2010 Burlesque collection, and probably it's closest match would by OPI Ali's Big Break.  However, whereas Ali's Big Break was a candy apple red, OMB! is more of a true red, or even a tomato red (I know my picture leans it a bit pink, but there is no pink in it).  This one is absolutely gorgeous.  3 coats.


One Less Lonely Glitter - Multi-sized, silvery-lavender, round glitter in a clear base.  As soon as I put this on my nails, I fell in love.  I absolutely love the color and different sizes in this glitter.  3 coats.


Prized Possession Purple - Tyrian purple shimmer with red and blue micro-shimmer.  This one is practically radiant in the bottle.  However, on the nail, it's a bit of a disappointment.  The color is still beautiful, but the formula lacks something to be desired.  I had quite a bit of trouble with drag (as show on my ring finger).  Pic is 2+ coats, meaning I tried for a third, but I had so much trouble with drag, I just gave up.  

Step 2 the Beat of My Heart - Holo micro-glitter and large hologram hearts (silver/pink/purple) in a thick clear base.  Oh how Nicole loves her big-piece glitters.  Me?  I find them to be mesmerizing in the bottle, but a total PITA to apply.  You have to place the big hearts and that has a tendency to make the clear base lumpy, and then if you try to smooth it out, you will move the hearts.  That said, I think this is a really pretty look.  I think this would look beautiful over the silver foil in this collection, Give Me the 1st Dance, or even over the top of a french mani (funky or otherwise).  Of course, as it's hearts, it's perfect for Valentine's Day.

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All in all, like I mentioned above, I think this is a great collection.  Yeah, the fact that it's Justin Beiber may turn some people off (or OTOH, it may make some people buy it just because), but aside from Prized Possession Purple all the colors were winners, IMO, and even that one was a pretty color, just annoying formula.  

These bottles come with little hang-tags that stated "in support of Pencils of Promise.  Join Justin and PoP to build 100 schools around the world".  However, there's no additional info.  I searched Pencils of Promise's website and Justin Beiber's website, but I didn't find any information to how this collection directly helps with this cause.  Though I did find information stating that Justin Beiber is a regular contributor to PoP.  

Also, as stated on the bottle, Nicole by OPI has a new brush.  It's almost a cross between the Sally Hansen Insta-Dri brush and OPI's own ProWide Brush.  I like it in concept, but as it's still new, it seems that they have a few kinks to work out.  Some of them were perfect and then some of them were cut so wonky, it made application really tricky.  Let's hope this is something that will work itself out with future releases.

From what I understand, this collection started off last month as a Walmart exclusive and should be headed to ULTA and Target next month.  Nicole by OPI retails in the $7-$8 range.  

These were sent to me for review

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

China Glaze Anchors Away Collection - Knotty Nauticals (Part 2)

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, like most collections, China Glaze broke this collection into 2 groupings.  Yesterday, I showed you "Sand & Sea", and today I have the second part of the collection, "Knotty Nauticals". Whereas Sand & Sea had more pastels, lighter shades, and neutral shades... Knotty Nauticals is all about the bright shades.




















Ahoy! - Jelly-ish finish, bright fuchsia-pink creme with tonal and golden shimmer.  This one is so unbelievably pretty.  It's a bright pink with shimmer, yes, but it's also so much more.  The finish is something really unique.  When I first applied it, I thought it was going the be a jelly, but nope.  It's a creme, with the same squishiness as a jelly.  Pic is 2 coats and the formula was perfect.


First Mate - Slightly-dusty, medium-dark blue creme.  This one almost reminds me of a denim blue.  Y'all know me and blues, so of course, I love it.  The color is very pigmented.  It was almost opaque at one coat, though, I did 2.


Hey Sailor - True red creme.  This one is a perfect 1940's pin-up red creme.  It doesn't lean blue, nor does it lean orange, so it's probably wearable on just about every skintone.  It's also definitely more of a summer red than a fall/winter/holiday red.  It is just a red creme, so it's not incredibly unique, but the name is fantastic.  2 coats.  


Life Preserver - Dusty red-orange creme.  As soon as I read the name on this one, I thought of those big, boxy lifesavers you have to wear when you rent a boat, even down to the slightly-dirty tinge to the orange.  Normally, oranges and I don't play nice, but I didn't dislike this on my skintone.  Formula was a tad on the thin side.  3 coats.

Lighthouse - Yellow jelly with golden shimmer.  Okay, now this is a unique polish.  It's a yellow jelly (yep... the word "jellow" kept running through my mind.  The shimmer in it is is really.  But best of all... it has a great formula.  It is a bit thin, which only allows the shimmer to get more depth, but other than that, there were no issues (like you normally get with yellows).  3 coats.  





















Starboard - Shamrock green creme.  Like Life Preserver and First Mate, above, Starboard had dusty finish, and it's definitely more of a yellow-leaning green, than a blue-leaning green.  The color is very pretty and perfect for spring.  The formula was perfect.  2 coats.

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Now that I've swatched and reviewed the entire collection, I can definitely say that I absolutely love it.  The colors are pretty, with great pigmentation.  There's a variety of finishes, and IMO, not a wonky color in the bunch.  I know I've stated in the past how much I loved Up & Away, but I think Anchors Away just took away it's spot.

The collection is now available for pre-order at TransDesign, with a notation saying that it will be officially available in 1/12 (tomorrow!).

These were sent to me for review

Press Release: Zoya Intimate

I just received this press release from Zoya...

Spring 2011 Nail Color (available 01/15/2011)
intimate
a color romance
Temptations, whispers, dreams, secrets, illusions, liaisons, trysts... lingerie... kisses.
Zoya Nail Polish presents six new, elegant, full coverage yet revealing, metallics
and creams for Spring 2011 to rendezvous with.






















Zoya Intimate Collection
Marley (ZP542) - lavender pink with a whisper of metallic
Dove (ZP541) - delicate, pale gray cream
Caitlin (ZP540) - misty, moody gray violet cream
Dannii (ZP537) - sparkling, enchanted orchid metallic
Jules (ZP538) - soft, glimmering gold kiss metallic
Gemma (ZP544) - mysterious green/purple duotone metallic

Zoya is the new color of fashion... The Zoya Intimate collection was
designed to recreate the custom looks developed for and inspired
by the runways of New York Fashion Week - Spring 2011.

Ultra long-wearing, glossy nail lacquers  by Zoya are free of harmful
industrial chemicals like toluene, camphor, formaldehyde,
formaldehyde resin, dibutyl phthalate (DBP) that are known
to cause cancer and birth defects.

Find Zoya Intimate as well as over 300 other ultra high-fashion
Zoya shades at www.zoya.com. As always, each and every
Zoya color is made for women so we name them after women.

Intimate by Zoya - available January 15, 2011
Sug. Retail $7.00 per 0.5 fl. oz. bottle (US)
http://www.zoya.com

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Okay, I can't tell you guys why, but I am beyond excited for this collection.  I got my 3 Free order from Zoya yesterday and included in my order was the plate for Intimate, and it looks so beautiful.

Monday, January 10, 2011

China Glaze Anchors Away Collection - Sand & Sea (Part 1)

As China Glaze Up & Away is one of my favorite collections from 2010, I've eagerly been awaiting their Spring 2011 collection.  I know there been teasers out there since last summer, so it's great to finally see it in person.

Like all regular China Glaze collections, this one was separated into two groupings.  "Sand & Sea" is the more pastel/lighter shades in the collection.


Below Deck - Purple/grey/mauve hybrid creme.  This one is supposedly as close as China Glaze could get to the old, discontinued, and much-beloved neutral, Channelesque.  I've never owned Channelesque, so I can't tell you if it's a dupe or not (check The Swatchaholic for a great bottle comp pic), but I can tell you that I absolutely LOVE Below Deck.  It's one of those colors that I can't describe to save my life, hence the above purple/grey/mauve hybrid description, but it's also fabulous.  I don't have a lot of neutrals, so Below Deck is pretty unique in my collection.  This one is a true creme, without the hidden shimmer like some of the other cremes in the collection.  The formula is perfect, as well.  It was almost opaque at one coat, though I did 2 coats.  UPDATE - The Swatchaholic now has a on-the-nail comparison up.  They look very similar.  

Knotty - Golden beige shimmer base with silver and pastel (pink, green, blue) glass-fleck shimmer.  Judging the bottle, this is one of the two in this grouping that I thought I wouldn't really like.  However, once I put it on, I found myself really liking it.  The shimmer in it is unexpected and very pretty.  Pic is 3 coats.  Formula was a little thin, but nothing unworkable. 


Pelican Grey - Light grey creme with subtle pearlescent shimmer.  Beautiful lighter grey.  The best part in this polish is the "hidden" pearly shimmer.  Usually greys give me cadaver hands, but I loved this with my skin tone.  Formula was a tad on the watery side.  Pic is 3 coats. (UPDATED - I changed my picture of Pelican Grey so it doesn't look like a dupe to Sea Spray)


Sea Spray - Light grey-blue creme with pearlescent shimmer.  Like Pelican Grey above, Sea Spray has that fantastic pearly shimmer, though it's not hidden in this polish.  Of all the polishes in this part of the collection, this one may be my favorite.  I think the name on this one is perfect.  The formula was very similar to that of Below Deck.  Pic is 2 coats, though it was very close to being a one-coater.  

Sunset Sail - Peachy nude creme with pearlescent shimmer.  Yes.  Another one with a pearlescent finish, and that's a-okay with me.  I can't get enough of these polishes with the slight-pearlescence.  Like Knotty, I really didn't see myself liking this one at all.  However, once I had it on, I fell in love with it.  It's a pretty peachy-nude that doesn't look overly-orange against my pink skin (the redness around my fingers is due to the cold and not to this polish).  Pic is 3 coats, and aside from thinness, there were no issues.


















White Cap - White jelly with tons of golden glass fleck shimmer.  This one is so pretty and very unique for a non-unique concept.  I know golden-whites or white with golden shimmer are relatively common, but this one stands alone.  Due to the jelly finish, the golden shimmer is able to be suspended in the base.  Plus, it's a little on the thin side which lets you build the color and the shimmer.  Pic is 3 coats.

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I know I sound like a broken record when it comes to China Glaze collections, but I absolutely love the first 6 in this collection.  And I didn't expect myself to say that.  I thought it would seem a little lacking when compared to last year's amazing Up & Away collection.  However, dare I say that I may like Anchors Away even better?  I love that there is variety in the finishes.  Up and Away was all cremes, and fall's offering, Vintage Vixen, was all shimmers, so I love that this collection mixes it up a bit.

This collection is now available for pre-order at TransDesign, but I know several people have reported seeing it in brick and mortar beauty supply stores.  I should have part 2, Knotty Nauticals, up very soon.

These were sent to me for review