Friday, September 30, 2011

L'Oréal Owl's Night — New LE Project Runway Collection

Here's Owl's Night, the second of the two L'Oréal polishes I picked up yesterday. This one belongs to the Watchful Owl subsection of the new Project Runway collection.

I swatched this with three coats, but you could easily get coverage with only two. Owl's Night has a deep, dusty plum base with lots of gold shimmer. I think this is a perfect fall color and I like it a lot. It looks like it might be a cousin of Chanel Or de Russie, but I don't have that one for comparison. In any case, it's a very luxurious color.

L'Oréal Cockatoo's Mystery — New LE Project Runway Collection

I love finding the limited edition drugstore collections! I think it's the thrill of the hunt. Yesterday in CVS I came across a whole series of Project Runway collections from L'Oréal. There were four mini collections, each with a wild theme: Charming Cockatoo, Watchful Owl, Audacious Amazon, and Sultry Raven. Each collection had two nail colors along with some other makeup products. I picked out one each from the Cockatoo and Owl collections.

First, here's Cockatoo's Mystery. It's an elegant, warm gray. I have a feeling there's probably an Essie dupe for this color, but if you can believe it I don't own any grays aside from this one now!

This may not be the most unique color, but I'm really loving it. This swatch is three coats. The formula was really easy to work with. I was expecting it to be a little chalky because of how pale the color is, but in fact it was completely smooth. I also really like L'Oréal's brush. It's flat, but not huge and mop-like! It's one of my favorite brushes out there.

Next, I'll show you swatches of Owl's Night!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Wet n Wild The Gold & The Beautiful

Here's a polish I picked up in CVS last week for about $2. Wet n Wild is a pretty awesome brand; they make nice polishes and they're very affordable. The Gold & The Beautiful is basically just dense gold glitter. I swatched it with three coats. It covers pretty well, but the nail line is still visible.

I think this polish is best for layering. You could layer it over a gold foil if you just wanted extra blingy gold nails. I layered one medium coat over four different colors to get a sense of the possibilities. (Index: Misa Heaven White; Middle: Wet n Wild Black Crème; Ring: Wet n Wild Teal of Fortune; Pinky: Zoya Mimi.)

This is definitely not a delicate gold shimmer, as you can see. I also think this polish would work very well for adding gold sparkle to a frankenpolish. If I can find an empty bottle, I may come up with something!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pink Wednesday : OPI Shanghai Shimmer

My very first Pink Wednesday, in fact! And this polish is the very first bottle of OPI that I ever owned. It was given to me by a good friend in High School. We were on the fencing team together, and one day I spotted this beautiful color on her nails. Next time she was ordering some nail polish, she remembered how much I liked it and got an extra bottle for me! So nice! I wore it to senior prom.

This bottle is from before OPI went "Big 3 Free" and has the old black label. As you might expect, it applies easily and smoothly. It has a subtle greenish iridescence. This swatch is with three coats. As far as I know, this color is part of the permanent line and is still available (although now in the new formula.)

Monday, September 26, 2011

Chanel Blue Rebel

It was pouring rain the day I stopped by Chanel SoHo to pick up this polish. My shoes were soaked; my jeans were soaked from the knees down. But when you get to the door of the boutique, the tall, handsome guy in a suit opens the door for you and offers to take your soaking wet umbrella. He takes out a fresh plastic bag for you to drop it into so you don't have to drip all over the store. And because this is Chanel, the plastic bag has a Chanel logo on it. How could it be any other way?!

Here's Blue Rebel from the Les Jeans de Chanel collection in full sunlight. These pictures are two coats with regular clear polish on top.

And in the shade:

These pictures are fairly color-accurate on my monitor. Chanel Blue Rebel is very much a denim blue crème. It leans just the slightest bit towards green and has a hint of dustiness to it. This polish has a lovely and agreeable formula. It's completely smooth and opaque in two coats, and it dries quickly. I just checked the Chanel website, and Blue Rebel is out of stock, but Blue Boy and Coco Blue are still currently available.

Friday, September 23, 2011

I ducked into Chanel SoHo to get out of the rain...

And look at the cute little shopping bag that followed me home!

Oh hello there, what do you have inside? You look like just the right size for a bottle of...

Chanel Blue Rebel! I probably would've spent half an hour trying to decide which blue to get, but it turned out this was the very last one they had left in stock. I'm glad they had this one, as I think I would've settled on it eventually anyway. As soon as I'm back from my trip to NYC I'll be sure to swatch and post photos!

I also took a moment to sample the new N°19 Poudré Eau de Parfum and Eau de Toilette (one for each wrist!) and both formulations are really lovely. I'm partial to powdery scents, and I'm starting to fall in love with the Eau de Parfum. It's very delicately green and fresh, and very refreshing in that it's not yet ANOTHER sugary, fruity floral like so many contemporary fragrances. It's as sophisticated as you'd expect from a N°19 flanker.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Deep Purple: OPI Siberian Nights and Zoya Mimi

OPI Siberian Nights is a very dark, vampy purple from the Fall 2007 Russian Collection. As a Russian major, that whole collection ranks among my favorites. In low lighting Siberian Nights is almost black, but in the sun you can see it's a rich, glossy plum. This is a swatch with two coats and no topcoat. The formula is very easy to work with.

I added one layer of Zoya Mimi to this swatch. Mimi was part of the Zoya Sparkle collection from Summer 2010. It's a glorious, vibrant purple glass fleck.

These pictures really don't do it justice!

Friday, September 16, 2011

OPI Tease-y Does It fits today's weather

This polish was released for last year's Burlesque holiday collection, but the color makes me think of fall. It's not officially autumn yet, but the weather today is cool and crisp. I included an excessive number of pictures because this polish is complex and changes subtly with the light.

It has magenta flecks of shimmer in a charcoal base. It also has more sparsely distributed gold flecks. It's a little thick to apply, but covers nicely in two coats. And sadly the dazzling duochrome is only visible in the bottle and does not transfer to the nail. However, it's still very sparkly under the sunlight. This polish reminds me of China Glaze Side-Saddle, but they are not identical. Side-Saddle has a little more purple/plum in its base color, and all gold shimmer.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Chanel Rose Confidentiel

I received Chanel Rose Confidentiel as a thoughtful birthday gift from a friend this year. I believe this color was originally released in Fall 2010 along with Rouge Fatal and Rose Insolent, and is still available on the Chanel website. This polish has a very nice formula and is quite shiny on its own. It's easy to apply and only requires two coats.

I've heard that OPI Kreme de la Kremlin is a close match, but unfortunately I don't have both of them to compare. A very demure color, to be sure. It's potentially "boring" in comparison to other colors, but I think it looks nice and elegant. Sometimes this is just the sort of understated color I want.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Late Summer Sunset: nail art with purples and oranges

Today, for some reason, I was drawn to purple and orange. I made some quick nail art by alternating five colors in a slight variation on the Ruffian manicure.

On the very top is China Glaze Peachy Keen. This swatch is three coats with Seche Vite on top to smooth them out. It's a chalky and difficult color to work with, but finishing it with topcoat helps a lot.

Next is Zoya Malia, a medium lavender/lilac creme which also requires three coats and a topcoat to smooth it out. It's easier to apply than Peachy Keen, though.

Then comes OPI Cajun Shrimp. This is a classic, BRIGHT and shiny coral. It leans towards pink, but still contains plenty of orange. It's very easy to apply and only needs two coats. The first picture is most color accurate.

The deep purple is Orly Rio Nights. This is a gorgeous, shiny jelly and requires four coats. I think it's worth it.

Finally, the base color is OPI Hot & Spicy. This is a medium orange creme with a hint of pink and an almost pastel quality, though it's not pale enough to really be pastel. It also needs three coats for opacity.

So there's the purple and orange special of the day. What are some of your favorite color combinations?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Ready for fall: Essie Sew Psyched and Smokin' Hot

Hello everyone!

Today I swatched two Essie polishes from last year.

Sew Psyched is a muted khaki green with very subtle shimmer that's pretty much only visible in direct sunlight. It's easy to apply and only required two coats for even coverage.

Smokin' Hot is a sophisticated greyish plum/purple. It's dark but not exactly vampy. This one was a little more difficult to apply evenly and needed three coats.

Even though these polishes came out last year, they fit right in with all the colors coming out in the new fall collections from Zoya, OPI, China Glaze and others.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Joining the BLUE trend!

In hopes of deterring myself from paying outrageous prices for the new Chanel blues (Les Jeans de Chanel) I have swatched four blue crèmes to satisfy the craving for BLUE!

OPI What's With The Cattitude? is a nice baby blue. Like all pastels, it was a little streaky to apply but it easily evens out in three coats.

OPI Just Groovy is a brighter sky blue. This is two coats.

OPI Dating A Royal is well-loved for a good reason. It has a jelly consistency, which makes it very shiny, and takes three coats to be opaque.

Finally here is China Glaze Calypso Blue. It has a thick, somewhat sticky consistency but it's easy to control during application. This is a great navy blue that is very dark but still obviously blue and not black.

So, still fantasizing about Les Jeans?
I admit I still kind of want Coco Blue. I would love to know how it compares to What's With The Cattitude? and China Glaze Bahamian Escape or China Glaze Caribbean Blue.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Two polishes from Zoya Smoke & Mirrors Fall 2011

Two polishes from this fall's Zoya collection really grabbed me so I had to get them. Both of these are from the "Mirrors" part of the 12 piece collection.

Zoya Jem is a rich plum with a sparkling/flecked quality. It's even more beautiful in person. The golden duochrome only shows up in the bottle, unfortunately, but it's still a very complex color on the nail.

Zoya Neeka is a smokey purple with gold and slightly iridescent flecks. Another complex and interesting color. I think it's a distant cousin to Chanel Paradoxal or Essie Smokin' Hot. It's just a little less grey.

Both polishes have pretty smooth application. Neeka was slightly more difficult and needed three coats for even coverage. A more careful application would probably only require two coats.

I ordered these from their website. I've had very good luck with Zoya polishes in general. My favorite thing about them is that they never discontinue colors.