Friday, January 30, 2015

Raspberry-ish: Purple Medallion & Stuck In The Middle

(Thursday)
Here's the current mani, which I've had on for a couple of days. (My left ring finger is now chipped, and it apparently chipped in the last few hours since I took this picture. So this will probably be coming off sometime very soon.)
As the title says, this is Purple Medallion, which I talked about a few entries back. It's maybe not quite as pink as I was thinking when I wrote about it the other day - I think it's basically on the borderline between purple and pink. But in any case it doesn't look like I would expect something named "Purple Medallion" to look. (I think they could easily have traded names between this and Gift of Sparkle. But I'm sure there was some reason or other they didn't.) What you don't get an idea of from this picture is the total sparkliness of this polish. It's really a bit too much sparkliness for my taste, to be quite honest. I love the base color, though, and the picture is pretty accurate on that.

Before this, I had on another polish that was in more or less this basic color range, and that was Pretty Serious Stuck In The Middle. The last NotD kind of post I did, I was wearing Feifei at the time I wrote, and I actually just slapped this on right over Feifei. I forget now why I decided to do that! But it was really pretty and shimmery, and I couldn't tell if I was seeing Feifei or just the shimmer in Stuck In The Middle, because it's awfully shimmer-packed on its own. I'm going to have to try it again to find out. (But with Valentine's Day coming up in, what, 2 weeks, I'm in the pink/fuchsia mode anyway.)

(Also, I'm looking the pictures at that link above and thinking, Why the hell didn't I buy Undercover Mermaid when I bought the other two she's talking about there? Very silly of me.)

Between that and Purple Medallion I actually went two whole days with nothing on my nails except Nail Nutrition, can you believe it? But I was off from work and not doing anything much except hanging around at home, and so nobody saw me except Rob practically the whole time, anyway.

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And now it's Friday, and I'm wearing Stuck In The Middle again, because after I wrote this last night I had that one on my brain. This polish is seriously almost opaque in two coats, which, since it's a jelly, is amazing. I guess it's all that shimmer. The shimmer looks blue in the bottle but I'm not picking much of the blue up on the nail. (What it may actually be is violet!)
This is a very sloppy manicure with some seriously flooded cuticles - I was in a rush - but at least if you look close you can see some of the shimmer. This picture looks redder on my monitor than the mani does in real life, though - again, it's more of a raspberry color, pretty similar to the base color of the one above. (I also have a nail wheel swatch of this somewhere, I'll have to dig that out.)

I have to pimp for Pretty Serious a little extra just because my experience with them has been so good. (Not pimping in the sense that I'm getting money or merchandise out of this, because I'm not. This is strictly an unpaid-for thing.) My experience is fairly limited - I only have three of their polishes, and actually I've only tried two of them, because I haven't tried Swatch & Learn yet. But the two that I've tried - both jellies, the other one is Party By The Pool - are totally awesome. (And I've heard great things about Swatch & Learn, too, which is why I wanted it!) Also, even though this is an Australian brand, they apparently have a US warehouse, and my last order came super-fast. I've noticed that some indie brands are more professional than others - makes sense, right? since we're depending on the individual, basically - and this is one of the professional ones. Which makes them really easy to do business with. (And I think this is also the same person I was linking to the other day when I was talking about Hard Candy, the vintage polish collector - her blog for that is PrettyRandom. First I thought the similarity in names was a coincidence, but apparently it's not!)

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Stash: cremes pt 2 - warm tones

I'm not sure everything here truly qualifies as "warm-toned" but that's what I was trying to pick out, at least. This the warmer half of my red cremes - then we shade down into orange, coral-leaning pinks, and tans. Links are to other people's reviews, because that's what I'm doing here, trying to get things into their proper categories (and that means looking at other opinions than just mine).
top row:
  • Big Apple Red (OPI mini) - classic red, just slightly orange-leaning
  • Chinoise (Rescue Beauty) - I think of this as a neutral red, but maybe it leans a hair orange (aha, Michelle does say "coral-tinged"!) and maybe that's the problem I've always had with it. It always looks great in swatches but it's never looked as good on me as I feel like it ought to.
  • Via Della Spiga (Square Hue Milan) - this seems very neutral to me, nice bright red, neither blue-leaning or red-leaning that I can tell.
  • China Flower (Revlon Parfumerie) - another red, but this one maybe leans a bit coral. (The link is to pictures of the same set that my husband bought me, this and Pink Pineapple below.) (mani from 2014)
  • EmpoweRED (Rococo) - another red that leans a bit orange - this one is distinctive because it came with a toner (see picture at the link) that turns it darker. I tried this and couldn't find that the toner made it a whole lot darker, so I haven't bothered to fool with it a lot. I need to give it another try!
2nd row:
  • Status Symbol (Essie) - coral-pink, although for some reason I love this color and never complain about it not being flattering on me! (Essie's description of it was apparently "feisty hot pink" which seems apropos even though it's hardly the brightest pink ever.)
  • Sooki and Ali (one above the other, in the picture) (both Zoya) - Sooki is like Chinoise in that it's a red that I expected to like more than I actually do, which I put down to it being orange-leaning. And Ali was a complete bust the time I tried it and I haven't tried it again since, and I should. I think the problem there is that neons tend to be warm-toned. And so it's part of the same issue, that warm colors and me just don't mesh, with a few exceptions.
  • Times Square Tangerine Creme (NYC Long Wearing) - I do buy the occasional orange on purpose - this one I think I bought in Ohio a few years back because I wanted a Halloween orange, and this one is not too bad on me, I think because it leans a bit more red.
  • Retro Red (Orly) - oddly, this is almost the same color as Times Sq Tangerine, even though it's labeled as red. It's a matte, though - they call it a "satin matte" or pleather finish (from a collection called Plastix, so that tells you the look they were going for). Again, though, it's a red-orange, and so not too too unflattering on me.
  • unlabeled orange mini
3rd row
  • Always Sheer Bliss (old-school Colorstay) - the only swatch picture of this I could find was popup city, so I'm not linking that. It isn't quite the same color, but this picture shows what these looked like in the original packaging. These were around for several years and went through a couple of formats. (I never thought that making you buy a new bottle of topcoat every time was a good idea, and you notice that Colorstay did eventually abandon that approach! This is a super-pale sheer pink, meaning not really my color, either.
  • English Rose (Rimmel Lasting Pro) - I think of this kind of coral-leaning "rose" color as being very 80s, but they do seem to have come back resoundingly in the last year or two. One thing about it, I don't own anything else like this, these days. (If I had something like this in the past, it's gone!)
  • Gibson Girl (Square Hue Decades) - from this month's Square Hue box, the 1900s box. I haven't tried this one yet but if it's 'warm' pink, I may not find it too appealing, on the evidence above! Still, it looks nice in the bottle and I'll give it a try.
  • Pink Pineapple (Revlon Parfumerie) - again, pale warm pink, not really my thing. It took me a long time but I'm finally learning to avoid things like this!
  • Cajun Shrimp (OPI mini) - another orange-coral-red, apparently with a bit of shimmer which I hadn't even noticed.
bottom row: 
  • Decades of Shades (OPI) - Huh, PolishAholic calls this "red-brown" which makes me think Marsala. In person I have always called this "baby-poop brown" which pretty much tells you my attitude towards it. It looked great in the bottle but again, just doesn't look good on me.
  • Via Sant'Andrea (Square Hue Milan) - it's tan (or light brown, if you like). It's a pretty tan, but it's just a tan. (I am a bright-colors person, for the most part, I just don't get that excited about tans.) (Having said that, I am comparing this to the others in that row and have decided it's much more neutral than the ones to its right - sort of a sand-color? See comments below.)
  • Dusty Spring Fields (Hedy's ma.nish.ma) - no swatches of this one so the link is to a display pic. I think this brand is only at RiteAid, or at least that's the only place I've ever seen it. I liked this color - I suspect that it's a cooler brown than these others.
  • Gray Area (Xtreme Wear) - this blogger describes this polish as a "purple gray" which I would not have thought to say. (Although I have described Dusty Spring Fields, just above, as a purplish tan, come to think of it. It doesn't look purplish in the bottle but it reads that way on the nail, in some lights.) I don't remember that I fell in love with Gray Area the one time I tried it, so maybe it needs another try. (I think I've said that several times here!) But hmm, look at it compared to Via San't Andrea two over from it, especially. Both the ma.nish.ma polish and this one look quite purple compared to that. Interesting!
  • Bubble Bath (above) and Tickle My France-y (below) (both OPI minis) - Huh. The story about Bubble Bath there at the link is very interesting, and my bottle doesn't especially look like either one of those so I wonder if I mixed my polishes up - the OPI minis are not labeled. It's either a pale pink or an almost-white, according to that. I'mna have to go look at these again! Tickle My France-y is supposed to be just a bit darker but it also looks more pink and less tan in those pictures. Surely I can't have gotten them both mixed up, I only have 10 of the minis and they're mostly not this close in color! (I will report back on this. Maybe it's just the lighting.)
I said that this is only about half my red cremes - the rest will be in the next installment of cremes. Honestly, I need to STOP BUYING REDS (or at least red cremes - but really reds in general) unless there's something truly unique about any future ones I consider buying. I have a ton of them and I don't wear them that much. The same goes for the warmer and especially paler pinks, but they're not such a temptation for me, generally.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Stash: cremes pt 1 - plus Hard Candy goodness

I've been showing you glitters but actually I took pictures of the cremes first, and I think I want to show those next. I'll get back to the microglitters, don't worry! 

Oh, before I get to my stash pics - I'm always showing my vintage Hard Candy polishes, and did you see the news about that? Hard Candy is re-releasing several of their vintage polishes (in the vintage bottle with coordinating plastic ring) for their 20th anniversary in April. I never was crazy about the pastels - I was in my 30s in the 90s, so I was probably a good 15 years older than their core consumer - but I loved Scam and Trailer Trash, in particular, and Scam is in the group of 4 that will be available. They released this picture on Instagram:
Way cool. (More on Hard Candy along the way AND down at the bottom.)


And starting on the cremes in my stash, here are the neutrals at the top, and then greens and blues:
top row:
  • unlabeled black creme & unlabeled white creme - there's a bunch of these unlabeled ones in the cremes - the black creme is actually pretty good and I've used that one a few times. Many of these I tend to forget about.
  • Wild Shine Black Creme - I bought this because Karen kept talking about it, but she's not the only polish blogger addicted to using it as a base for other stuff. It's cheap (99 cents at Walgreen's last I looked) and it works great, in my experience. Wild Shine has new bottles out but hopefully they haven't monkeyed with the formula! (That first link has picture of the new bottles and the shade list.)
  • Vibe (old Hard Candy mini) - I couldn't find anybody else's swatches of this so I put a wheel picture at the bottom of the entry. Re HC generally, here's part of Pretty Random's old Hard Candy stash, for reference. My HCs are mostly not all that old - early-to-mid 00s at the earliest. (All I know for sure is that they're pre-2009 because I bought them when I was still at my old job. But then 2009 was when HC changed everything - bottles, product names, and I think the products themselves too - and started selling at Wal-Mart.)
  • Dovima (Zoya Matte Velvet) - I put the Matte Velvets into the creme category but I'm not sure they really belong here, because I think they do have some shimmer in them. It's not always evident either in the bottle or on the nail, but it's there. (I find it easier to see when you add top coat over these polishes.) In this case, the shimmer is silvery.
  • Alpine Snow (OPI mini) - basic white, really, just like Black Creme is the basic black. (Annoyingly, OPI does not print color names on the mini-size bottles - luckily I only have the one set, and I did write the names down, or I'd never have sorted this out!)
between rows:
  • Fetish (Cult Nails) - Cult Nails is going out of business, and this is still the only one I own. It's a good'un though, a satiny wax finish black that's really cool.
second full row:
  • Gray By Gray (CSM) - a blue-tinged gray, now discontinued - Revlon Chic is said to be a dupe, though!
  • (upside down) Na Prikope (Square Hue Prague collection) - greenish-gray, so sort of the green version of Gray By Gray. You can see in the picture that it reads very green next to other neutrals.
  • Via Montenapoleone  (Square Hue Milan collection) - I show the back of the Square Hue bottles because the front is solid white and you can't see the polish. This one is another matte black. (Apparently they are very "basic" in Milan, or so Square Hue thought - the three polishes in this collection are black, red, and tan.)
  • Wet Cement (Xtreme Wear) - Just what it says, really, a cement-colored light gray.
  • You Don't Know Jacques (OPI mini) (which really should be with the tans in another picture) - this is pretty much a famous polish in the nail world, but in case you're not already familiar with it, it's a fairly dark taupe.
third row:
  • Veruschka (Zoya Matte Velvet) - again, has hidden shimmer, but otherwise looks like a deep forest green
  • Moss (Chick) - a nice medium green with maybe a hint of blue. I really like Chick polish and I'm sorry that they seem to be gone.
  • Here Today Aragon Tomorrow (OPI - Suede finish) - I still haven't worn this but I'm sure I'll get around to it between now and St. Patrick's Day, at the latest. It's lovely in the bottle and I only hope I like it as much on my nails! - I'm also laughing at Michelle of ALU saying (jokingly) that matte polishes are "so last season" on that linked page - in 2010. Matte polishes have proven to have a lot of staying power, haven't they?
  • Tenacious Teal (Color Show) - this is pretty similar to Moss, I need to compare. I think it's a little more blue, but it still does not read as teal to me, it reads as green.
  • 2 more unlabeled minis - the bottom one is probably a true green creme but I think the top one is more of a frost
bottom row:
  • Sky (old Hard Candy) - I always thought this was "Shy" as the font's almost unreadable! Apparently this pastel blue was the polish that started the whole HC craze - I've lost the link where I read this, but it said that Alicia Silverstone went on Letterman in 1995 wearing Sky and matching blue pumps*, and said so on the show. This also apparently was one of the very first HC polishes, if not the first. I've never really liked it on me, to tell you the truth, but that's just me and pastels, we don't mesh. (I think they're pretty, but they don't look good on me.)
  • Pacific Blue (the original pre-reformulation Xtreme Wear) - periwinkle blue and a one-coater. I don't know what they were thinking when they changed this! (Of course it's now a lot more famous, so maybe they did it on purpose!)
  • Mesmerize (Essie) - I think this and Status Symbol were the first Essies I ever bought. I still don't own a lot of them because they're a little above my preferred price point and they never seem to be on sale, but I do love these original two. Mesmerize is a royal blue. (more swatches)
  • Nail-robi (Color Club) - very dark navy with more than a hint of purple, quite lovely
  • Cynthia (Zoya) - probably not really a creme, think it has some scattered glitter. But it reads mostly as a creme.

Ha - Hard Candy got a whole nostalgia piece on Buzzfeed. (And it does say that Sky was the first color.)

*The Alicia Silverstone story as I related it above may be two different stories conflated - the HC Wikipedia page says that Sky was created to match the founders's shoes, which makes much more sense, really. I was looking for video of this 1995 Letterman appearance, and I did find a still photo on Tumblr, with a caption that said that she was wearing Sky on her toenails, not her fingernails. I'm thinking that she was not necessarily wearing matching shoes at the time!

I couldn't find any swatches of Hard Candy Vibe, but I do have wheel pictures that I took myself - so here you go - it's #19. (20 must be Fetish, with the wax finish - the rest all look about the same.)

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Stash: flakies & some topcoats

A pause from normal glitters to talk about other things (which are still pretty glittery).

I have another whole small box full of topcoat-ish things, besides these. This bunch is mostly metallics, and my small but growing collection of flakies - plus a couple of things that don't really belong here, but somehow snuck in with this batch.

While I'm on the subject, let me say how thrilled I am that flakies seem to be back in fashion again, because I love flakies. See how empty the Chloe bottle is just below this? That's my second bottle. And I would have bought a third one if Zoya hadn't already discontinued this line before I got around to it.
top row:
  • Pearly Whites (Triple Shine) - As you may can tell, this was marked down at K-Mart. It's a shredded flakie. I'm not really a fan of shreds so we'll see how I end up liking this.
  • #51 (Nfu Oh) - This polish is legendary and I never thought I'd own it. It's a really insane flakie - it's like the Zoya flakies in that it lies flat and removes easily. It does better with something underneath it - it seems to have a purple base so that would be the obvious choice. It's a duochrome that shimmers with all sorts of colors depending on the light, though - it's hard to completely pin down. (Here's a mani that shows the base color.)
  • Fairy Dust (e.l.f.) - this is what I consider a "normal" flakie, because it's like Chloe, except without the pink base. (Note that my bottle was unlabeled. Luckily my receipt told me the color name or I would still be trying to figure it out. I have gotten the impression than this is fairly common with e.l.f. polishes.) (mani from 2013)
  • Chloe (Zoya) - an orangy-pink flakie; the base is slightly tinted pink.  I wore and wore this a couple of years ago, with all kinds of colors, but especially over bright pinks. I liked to use multiple coats of it, which is why I went through so much of it! (examples from 2012)
  • Maisie (Zoya - these two are both from the same Zoya line - Fleck Effects - and they are both discontinued) - Maisie is greenish and reads more glittery than Chloe does, in my experience. (This may have to do with the size of the flakes? I'm not sure.)
second row:
  • Hot Couture (Color Club) - this may not be a flakie, actually, but it and Snowflakes look so much alike in the bottle that it confuses me. Pink holo glittery thing, definitely meant to use as a topcoat over other stuff.
  • Snowflakes (Color Club) - this is called a flakie, but this one seemed more like the Maisie glittery thing to me. But other people's swatches seem to look like a run-of-the-mill flakie, so maybe it's just my imagination.
  • Elle's Spell (Barielle) (and a layering combo here) - this is sort of in the Nfu Oh 51/Fowl Play ballpark - it's sheer and flakie and shifts around, and according to several swatchers has a red base. I haven't tried it lately so I'm not sure, but I would have said it was purple. Obviously I need to reswatch this!
  • Roxy (Zoya) (this is one of the mis-sorted ones, as are the two textures below it - this one is a jelly-ish glitter, so it's definitely neither a flakie nor a topcoat) Purple glitter in a sheer red-violet base - maybe it was the sheerness that led me to put it here!
third row:
  • Plum Chunky Glitter (Orly Color Blast) - it was on sale and I wanted to try out this brand, but as far as I can tell this is utterly dull. (I can't even find any swatches, so this link is to a seller.)
  • Gold Rush (Cover Girl Boundless Color) - one of the older polishes in my collection, a fairly sparse bright-gold topper.
  • Crushed Candy Sugar Rush (Julie G Gumdrops) - first of all, this shouldn't be in this category. I need to go back and look at this bottle, clearly, but this is not a flakie or a topcoat, and also I had written down Sugar Rush - which is orange, so it's definitely not. It's also not Sugar Plum Fairy (which was my first thought about where this confusion might've come from), which is a dark purple. Despite what I wrote down, I think this has to be Crushed Candy, although in my spreadsheet it says lavender, which this definitely ain't. However, it could be construed as red-violet, so this is apparently the right one. For some reason these names have always particularly confused me. Anyway, Julie G's version of Gumdrops has two different finishes - I think this is one of the more textured ones, in which case it belongs with Blueberry Fizz and Rock Candy. I'll try to remember to report back on this!
  • Liberty (Zoya Pixie Dust) - also shouldn't be here, don't know what I was thinking. This is the bright cyan blue, in the original Pixie Dust texture formula, so it ought to be with the rest of the Pixie Dusts. In any case, Michelle of ALU notes in that link that she had staining problems with this, and so did I. It's the only reason I haven't worn it more, because it's gorgeous. I need to double down on basecoat and try it again soon. (more swatches)
bottom row:
  • Fairy Dust (Khroma, as opposed to the e.l.f. Fairy Dust above and the several other Fairy Dusts that have been in existence at one time or another, most notably China Glaze). Note here that Khroma, the original name for the Kardashian sisters' makeup line, no longer exists. As I understand it, there was a lawsuit by some other company calling themselves Khroma, and the Kardashians lost, which is why these polishes are now called Kardashian Beauty. (I think they were technically supposed to have been pulled from sale. But the CVS where I bought this still had a couple the last time I looked. You also may find some with a new label slapped over the old one.) - Anyway, this is actually a nice gold topcoat, although nothing spectacular.
  • Silver Glitter (Barry M) - I got this in a blog sale, but it's apparently actually an LE polish that was only sold in Boots stores, so I found when I looked it up. (One way to tell this from other similar Barry M glitters is that it says "limited edition" on the cap, where others seem to say "special effects" or the like.) Here's another swatch of it.
  • Black In Mirrors (Color Show Brocades) - actually I wasn't thinking of this as one of the mis-categorized ones, but looking at the swatches, I think it might be. It looks pretty damn opaque.
  • Arsenic (Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics) - since I'm kind of into showing how obsessive-compulsive I am in recent entries, let me note that OCC apparently uses the same bottles that Studio M does, only with different caps. Arsenic is sort of the silver version of the Khroma above, but not so sparse. And it's got a sort of "antiqued" look to it - maybe it's blackened a little? that is really cool
  • (above that) unlabeled pink glitter - this could go with the top-coats, I think, it's very pale and sheer
  • Cougar Attack (Spoiled) - another example of my old favorite, copper glitter in a brown base. It's really glitter-packed and I really wish I had gotten my hands on a backup bottle of this. (It's apparently a fair dupe for Lippmann Superstar, which I had forgotten if I ever knew!) (mani from 2013)

Here's a question related to this subject - aren't holos and flakies actually more or less the same thing? I mean, obviously they don't look the same, but I have gotten the impression along the line that they are both variations on the same material: mylar, which is a plastic. It may be a question of how thick or thin the mylar is and how it's processed - whether it's chopped into glitter or shredded up, for example. (I don't know anything at all about how they do this but clearly some kinds are shaped differently than others.) (It's so hard to find clear answers about this kind of thing. For example, the very last use in a long list in the Wikipedia entry about BoPET - which is the generic name for Mylar - mentions nail polish, more or less in passing.)

(This Etsy video tells a little about the making of glitter - they don't use the name Mylar, but the process they describe is similar. Almost all modern glitter is metallicized plastic, basically. Glass glitter still exists but I know from my various forays into crafting that it's usually hard to find.)

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Winter manis

I don't have anything specific that I save to wear in January, but my January manis tend to fall into a couple of categories. If I'm feeling down I tend to wear glitters. (So far this year my mood has not taken a downturn, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed there.) I also tend to wear neutrals a lot. I'm not big on true nudes, so this tends to mean grays or grayed-out versions of other colors. Towards the end of the month I tend to shift towards a Valentine's Day theme - pinks and reds and the occasional purple. I've been pulling things to wear but I'm not quite ready for that yet. Soon, I think. (I was eyeing Purple Medallion, in particular, from yesterday's post. That might be the next thing I wear.)

However, today it's blue-gray. I was thinking about "throwback Thursday" and so I was digging around for something that was an old favorite, and I came up with Zoya Feifei - one of their glass-fleck-type polishes. This is three coats and it's not 100% opaque at that point, but close enough to suit me. (I just looked and Feifei is still available, which surprised me - I had some idea they had discontinued these.) (For the record: that's not an affiliate link.)
(This was taken in my car in the rain earlier - I was parked across the street from work and I was trying to decide whether to brave the rain or sit and wait for a few minutes. I finally told myself not to be a wimp, but meanwhile I got the picture! The lighting is surprisingly okay, considering the weather.)

Working backwards in time:
This is S-OPI I Only Shop Vintage, over a base of Rococo Stone Cold Karma, which is just a darkish nude. You can see the nude in this picture maybe more than in real life; I Only Shop Vintage is more like an "old gold" shimmer. I really like this, even though I don't feel like it should be especially flattering to my skin tone. Somehow it always seems to overcome this!

Before that I was wearing my recent L'Oreal purchase, The Reign of Studs, which is a texture... and also my brain really, really wants to read that name as a joke I'm not getting, because otherwise it's just very strange. But if I can get past the name issue, it's very pretty. I mattified the hell out of it, I must note - 3 coats of NYC Matte Topcoat, because I didn't feel like going as shiny as it would have been otherwise.
And that was over the previous manicure, which I also really liked but which I failed to get a decent picture of - that one was Square Hue First Flight, one of their new January releases. It's a pale gray that's sort of opalescent, very nice.

One more:
I was looking at my file of NotD pictures from 2014, and the last one I added, back in December was one I don't think ever made it over here. It's not anything special but just for completeness' sake: this is NYC Blue Majesty over Triple Shine Slick Black, in a sort of vague stab at a French mani effect. (I think I just wanted to try Blue Majesty out, was what that was about!)

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Stash: medium glitters

Let's call this one "medium" glitters. The category I have a ton of is microglitters - those are probably going to take multiple posts to go through. But we're not to that yet. This bunch is neither big chunky glitters nor microglitters, but the in-between ones. I also have some more that are in a separate "topcoat" category. I tried to start with the chunkiest remaining colors here, and work down toward the smaller ones.

As I noted in previous installments, the links here are to other people's reviews/swatches if I could find such a thing, and to my own only if I couldn't find any alternatives, because I've been trying to do "homework" and see what other people have to say about these polishes. But if you dig around in my archives you can also find my previous pictures for many of them.

List and links and descriptions at some length after the picture. (At least this one has nice neat rows!)
top row:
  • Bells Will Be Blinging (China Glaze) - very bright blue and silver (holo) glitter - very packed, I think the base must be clear but really I can't see it at all! This also has bar glitter in it, making it one of the very few of those that I own.
  • It's Bouquet With Me (S-OPI) - I bought the majority of my Sephora By OPI polishes in a 3/$10 sale right as Sephora started to close them out - I got lucky and just happened to notice that they had been marked down! This is one of several I bought from their "jewelry top coat" line, I believe. It's very blingy violet-leaning pink and silver glitter - and holo glitter as well - in a clear base.
  • Fowl Play (Orly) - this polish was all the rage back in 2011 when it first came out. I didn't buy it at the time, though, the only one I bought then was Sweet Peacock, which you'll see later on. I found this marked down last fall at Sally Beauty, and it's just as awesome as everybody said back in the day. It's a purple squishy base with multicolored bits (seemingly mostly blue and purple) as well as larger flakies). (This probably belongs in the jelly or the flakie category, really, not here, but it does have some glitter, I think.)
  • City Of Ashes (Esmaltes da Kelly) - This was the "mystery polish" that I wrote about at great length a few entries back, so I won't repeat myself. It's beautiful, though, silver glitter in a gray base.
  • Orchid Of The Year (Lynnderella) - I've also written about this one at length recently, since I declared it my favorite polish of 2014. It's mixed sizes of "radiant orchid" glitter, including some scattered holo glitter. (mani from 2014)
second row:
  • Mermaid's Dream (D.Lippmann) (get a load of the macro version too) - seafoam with a foil-like finish, and bigger blue pieces. It's much-duped now but when it came out there was nothing like it! Honestly, when I looked at it in the bottle I wasn't sure I would like it, but I do.
  • Patricia (Nostalgic Lacquer) (also here) - gorgeous, green with bits of purple. Was originally released as a St Patrick's Day polish. (mani from 2013)
  • Gold Digger (Aldo) - I didn't find much in the way of swatches for this, but this is not an American brand so I guess that's partly why. It's "mixed metals" - gold/silver/brass? I think, but it's hard to be sure - in a clear base. It reads gold, usually, but it's a more interesting gold than many. One of my favorites.
  • Amethyst Couture (Maybelline Color Show - from the Brocades collection) - You may remember some hoopla about the Brocades collection just over a year ago; it was a Christmas 2013 release. I ended up with two and frankly I don't love them all that much, that I'm going to cry about missing the rest. I swatched this yesterday and it didn't blow me away, although it did light up in direct sunlight. It looked kind of muddy, otherwise. (I prefer polishes that don't have to be in direct sunlight to show their awesomeness!) (These swatches I've been doing will probably be in an upcoming post.)
  • Ice Dream (Sinful Colors) - a very similar palette to Bells Will Be Blinging, really, blue and silver, but this one leans more towards the silver and is not as chunky. It's still quite blingy, though, looks like it has some small holo bits in it! (Both this and Bells could go in the top-coat category, really - they need something underneath for maximum effect.)
third row:
  • Honey You Should See Me In A Crown (Dollish Polish) - actually this one may mimic the finish of Mermaid's Dream (above), a bit, although the color scheme is very different. It's gold pieces in a red-orange base.
  • I Want To Believe (Dollish Polish) - pale blue-gray with scattered glitter - I tried swatching this one and you could barely see it except for the glimmer of the glitter.
  • Gift Of Sparkle (Studio M) - the four Studio M glitters look really similar in the bottle - except for Sexy Siren, they seem to me like they've found a formula and they're sticking with it - a formula that is super-sparkly and packed with holo glitter - and now they just tint the base different colors. This is the blue-violet one. (Studio M is exclusively at Meijer stores, but it's manufactured by Color Club, and if you take a look at CC Gift of Sparkle it looks exactly the same. The note on Steph's picture, if you read down, makes it sound like that is in fact the case.) (More swatches of the Color Club version)
  • Sexy Siren (Studio M) - the outlier in my Studio M pack - mostly turquoise glitter, with maybe   (There seems to be a Color Club twin for this one as well.)
bottom row:
  • Sparkling Wave (LASplash) - I bought several of these last year when Cherry Culture was having a clearance sale (they're having one now so it may have been this time last year) and they were all pretty similar. I think they really should be in the top-coat category - and maybe that's where the other 2 are, we'll see when we get there! It looks pretty thick in the bottle but doesn't go on that way. Has a pale-pink base.
  • Slaimmin' Red (Studio M) - Karen sent me this polish several years ago, and I really loved it and wore it a ton, so it's way down the bottle now and it's getting more than a bit sludgy. I swatched it on a nail wheel and it didn't seem like it had that old glitterbomb effect out of direct sunlight, although it did light up like always in direct sun. (I put some thinner in it after I swatched it but I didn't retry to see if it helped.) (example from 2013)
  • Purple Medallion (Studio M) - this looks like Gift of Sparkle in the bottle, but it is totally different on the nail. It's a red-violet that almost reads as pink.
  • #601 (Dear Rus) - the bottle is in Korean, so I can't read anything but the number and the name, but I believe this polish is known as "Shuffle Green". Dear Rus used to be sold a number of places in the US, but many of them seem to have discontinued it - I guess the sales weren't enough to justify the import costs. (This one came from Llarowe when theirs were on clearance, but I notice it's gone from there now.) Anyway, it's a green and gold topper with maybe some olive mixed in - really pretty.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Stash: more glitters

I couldn't figure out what to call this - slightly-less-chunky glitter? scattered glitter? there seems to be some of each in here, actually. So I settled on "more glitter" as being vague-but-accurate. More of these can stand on their own without undies than the previous batch.

I notice that very few of these are polishes I've worn a lot - in fact, I think Yule Light Up My Life is the only one I can remember wearing more than once. Maybe that tells me I need to think twice before buying stuff in this category!

Another thing I notice is that there are a lot of jelly bases here. There were only a couple in the first installment (which is at the link above).

(list below - and again, links are to other people's swatches if I could find any)
top row:
  • Clearly Spotted (Maybelline Color Show) - black & white matte glitters, in mixed sizes with a clear base. I bought this some time ago because I didn't have one like this, but I don't think I've ever worn it.
second row (the violet-looking ones):
  • Be Merry, Be Bright (China Glaze) - pink and purple - or red & purple depending on who you ask - hex glitter in a clear base. I haven't gotten around to wearing this much but I liked it a lot when I did!
  • Scandalous (Revlon) - mixed-size glitter in a dark base (jelly?) - the link here is a comparison to Lippmann Bad Romance; the similarity is what I bought this for. Again, haven't worn it a lot. (From here on out I'm going to quit saying that, and only note the ones I haven't worn at all.) (mani from 2013)
  • G-listen To Your Heart (Sephora by OPI) - orchid/fuchsia chunky glitter in a clear base (both this and SPFGW, below, are from SOPI's "Jewelry Top Coat" line)
third row:
  • Yule Light Up My Life (Serum No 5) - multicolored glitter, and I tend to forget that it's also glow-in-the-dark!
  • Prototype 003 (Virago) - holo bits in multiple shapes
  • Montana Sky (Colors by Llarowe) - silver. blue jelly base
  • Let's Go Crazy (Lippmann) - mixed colors in purple jelly - unworn - I love it in other people's swatches but when I swatched it on a nail wheel it didn't grab me!
fourth row (partial row on right):
fifth row:
bottom row:

By base:
clear base: Clearly Spotted, Be Merry Be Bright, G-listen To Your Heart, Yule Light Up My Life
dark base: Scandalous, Chupacabra, Glitterati
jelly base: Scandalous, Montana Sky, Let's Go Crazy, Mermaid's Tale, Chupacabra, Glitterati

Friday, January 16, 2015

Organization or lack thereof

This is a mess but this is meant to illustrate my organization system for nail stuff other than polish:
There is actually a method here, although it may not be immediately obvious. The main thing is the bin with all the bottles in it - those are little bins that my mom had, I imagine they came from a dollar store or somewhere like that. I have two of them in use for bottles of basecoat and topcoat and such. One lives in the living room by the computer, and the other one (the one pictured) is on the table by my bed. It's maybe a little junkier than usual but I am not domestic in the least so things in my house are always pretty chaotic. But I do like to be able to paint my nails when I feel like it, since that happens pretty often, and so I keep basically full sets of manicure products in both rooms.

The two bins don't have identical items in them but I try to keep one of everything important in each place - so various basecoats, topcoats, cuticle oils and nail files are in each set. (You can't see the nail files here - they're in a pencil-cup just out of sight on the right.) I left the pink thing in the picture because it's something I started using for travel and kept around just because it turned out to be a good size for throwing orange sticks and nail implements and such into. I don't have two full sets of all of that, but I do have at least two pairs of decent tweezers (those Revlon slant-tip ones), and you can see orange sticks in there too. And there are some cotton squares floating about this picture that appear to have seen better days - I think I need to either use those or toss them.

But anyway, you get the idea. Two complete sets, so I can do manicures in either room without toting everything around. I have two things of Gardener's Hand Therapy, even - you can see the tube in the foreground, and I have a pump bottle of it in the living room. (My mother gave me the tube, actually, which makes that one quite a few years old. And it smells divine as well as working well, so I bought the pump bottle a year or two ago. Actually I think they make it in a number of scents, but I like the original one.) I have a facial moisturizer in each place, too, and a bottle of aspirin, for that matter, because I'm headache-prone. I only have one tube of Aquaphor, though. Those last few things are obviously not actually manicure-related. I suppose you could use Aquaphor on your hands but mine are not usually chapped enough to call for the heavy-duty stuff. I save the Aquaphor for the big problems.

(And before somebody asks, I'm going to have to look later and see what that metal thing is that's sticking up next to the tube of hand therapy lotion, because I actually have no idea. But I'm not interested enough in the answer to jump up and go do that this minute. If the answer turns out to be interesting I'll report back. But I doubt it, because it's apparently something so uninteresting I see it every day and completely ignore it.) (Added: it's not metal, it's ribbon. It was attached to something that's down in the bottom of the bowl.)

These are just here for entertainment's sake - this is the sorting process for my stash-by-finish project.
(I think I talked about this assortment of bowls last year when I sorted and resorted by brand and then by color. One bowl is holiday stripes that I'm pretty sure came from the grocery store - HEB always has cute melamine stuff, I have a bunch of it - then the green one is an old Tupperware piece of my mom's, I think, and the big one below is of course meant for Halloween candy. I grabbed whatever large plastic things I could find. I have some big vintage Pyrex bowls, too, but those are too heavy.)



January Ipsy bag (possible spoilers!)

My January Ipsy bag:
The cute little blue and white bag (the other side was white) contained:

  • Be Good. Good Day. Day Moisturizer by La Fresh Eco-Beauty
  • Essential Lip Enhancer by Jouer
  • All Over Shadow Brush by Elizabeth Mott
  • Shimmer Powder in Whesek by BelláPierre
  • Natural Mineral Coconut Eye Shadow in Ethereal by Pacifica

  • I haven't been wearing eye makeup of any kind for a while now, because I've been having hypersensitivity issues, but I've experimented around a bit and I think it's just the stuff that goes closest to the eye itself - like mascara and eyeliner - that are the main problem. So this means that I can cautiously try out wearing eyeshadow again. So far, so good - and certainly keeping chemicals away from my eyes seems like it might help too. I know Pacifica is supposed to be all-natural so that seems like a good candidate to start with. This pale color looked good to put on the lids, so I used that, and the "shimmer powder" in the crease - I put them both on with my new brush, and it looked pretty good and didn't seem to bother my eyes at all.

    I like the moisturizer (and cool packaging!) and the lip-goo stuff is interesting, too. So I'm quite happy with this selection.

    I had posted some pictures of stuff I got for Christmas, but I completely forgot about this particular bottle o'stuff: Indie Lee Brightening Cleanser, which I bought because I had had an Ipsy sample. (It was more than I usually like to pay for skincare - I think $32 - but I found free shipping at Space.NK and a tiny bit goes a long way so it seems like it will last.) (Have I said "stuff" enough in this entry?)

    Also: this was in, I think, my December Ipsy bag, and I have turned out to really like it:
    So that may be the next thing I go hunting down a larger size of (although I'm in no danger of running out yet!)

    Thursday, January 15, 2015

    Llarowe + NOTD pics

    I wrote about both of these things but didn't have pictures at the time. So today the sun finally came out again and I ran to snap pictures. This is the stuff from Llarowe:
    (L-R: Hot Couture, City of Ashes, Gettin' Dirty With Disco Sally, and Snowflakes)

    And here's my NOTD of Intrigue-plus-TinC:
    A little tipwear but not bad at all considering this is the fourth day I've had it on! I don't remember what base-coat I used, but I know it was 2 coats of Intrigue, and then Seche Vite and only then Travel in Colour. You can't really see TinC too well there but it shows up quite well in most lights as a pretty pink shimmer. In fact I really like this combo a lot!

    I didn't get a picture of the mani before that one, but I had almost forgotten and I want to get it down here before I forget again: it was Color Club Nail-robi, which is a very-dark-but-not-black blue, with maybe a little hint of purple to it. And it's pretty much a one-coater, too, although I did two just to be safe. Then that chipped a bit after a day or so, and I patched it up and added Jordana's Skinny Jeans, which is a Barielle polish. (I found that tremendously confusing at first, since Jordana is also a polish brand, but apparently it is referring to Jordana Jeans, which were incredibly popular all through the 80s. I never wore them myself - my brand during the whole designer jeans craze was Gloria Vanderbilt - but a lot of my friends did.)

    Wednesday, January 14, 2015

    NOTD + most popular post of 2014

    A lot of people do "most popular" posts, and I went and looked at that and the answer interests me so I'll do one too. By a landslide, my most popular post was this one where I showed my Revlon stash. I can only assume that somebody must've linked to it, because it's not like I have a zillion Revlon polishes or anything.

    Here's the picture that goes with it:

    Almost all of my most-seen posts are from last January and February when I was posting a whole lot. Which tells me that I could get more regular readers if I'd post more often, but I just don't think I can keep it up for the long haul. I'd rather post less often and be a little more consistent about it than flame out and never want to post again!


    As it happens, I am wearing a Revlon polish today - one of a number I've bought since the picture above was taken - I think it's Intrigue, it's from the Brilliant Strength line. It's a pretty medium blue-gray creme, I can't really think of anything else I have like it. Of course I can never let well enough alone, with cremes, so I put Travel In Colour on top of it, and it makes a really pretty combo with TinC's pink shimmer.

    Monday, January 12, 2015

    Stash: chunky glitters

    I mentioned that I was attempting to sort my stash by finish. This has already turned out to be a bit more difficult than I thought, because things I thought were cremes keep turning out to be jellies, and so forth. The easiest thing to identify was of course chunky glitters, although even that turns out to have the same problems with hidden jellies and such.

    So anyway, here's the chunky glitter potion of the stash. I don't have a ton of big glitters - I like my glitter smaller than this, in general. The links are below are to other posts about these polishes, rather than my own, because I'm trying to do homework and look up what other people have to say about them! So assuming I don't give up on it completely, this is going to be a project that takes a while.
    sideways at top left (my "rows" are a bit screwy):
    • There's Snow One Like You (China Glaze Texture) - there are big glitters in this but they seem to hide away in all that white! (You will find a lot of hate out there for this one - "cottage cheese" is a term that I've heard several times - but it does make a cute accent nail, I think.)
    • Your Present Required (China Glaze) - a mix of colors and sizes of glitter, but blue, purple & silver predominate. Does best with an undercoat, since it has a clear base and doesn't go on in a way that you can easily build to opaqueness. (S&L swatches)
    • Glitter Matters (Funky Fingers) - matte glitters ("glitter matte-r's" get it?) in pink, white, and yellow - apparently there are a couple more in this line, in other color combinations. I like this so I wish I'd seen those!
    Dollish Polish minis at top right:
    • I Volunteer as Tribute - black jelly base with a mix of earth-tone glitters. It's a very fall-ish effect but really pretty!
    • Underneath that is Look At The Flowers Lizzie - I've heard this referred to as a "pretty ugly" polish but I loved it, somewhat to my surprise. It's sort of a pale green or olive crelly base, with various sizes of scattered pink, green, white & black matte glitter - the end effect, to me was that it looked like a meadow in early spring. Pretty cool.
    • Live Long And Prosper - blue crelly base with stars and other scattered pieces in blue, gold, and black
    3rd row:
    • Love Sprinkles (Sinful Colors) - clear base, hearts and smaller glitters in baby-pink and white - may be LE for Valentine's, not sure about that
    • The Deathly Hallows (Dollish Polish) - holographic topper with big DH-type shapes
    • Evil Queen (Essence Snow White collection) - BIG purple glitter in a clear base - there's a picture here (if you scroll down a ways) over a dark purple - definitely not intended to be worn on its own
    • Love Me Some Pie (Dollish Polish) - strawberry-colored jelly base, big circles & a mix of other glitters of various sizes & colors
    • Shake Your Money Maker (Deborah Lippmann) - teal & gold, mixed sizes
    4th row:
    • Poppy Field (Serum No 5) - pink jelly base, mostly red square and hex glitters with a scattering of black and gold
    • As If! (Nostalgic Lacquer) - black, white & pink matte hexes in various sizes, plus some bars (mani from 2013)
    • Blue Whale (LynB) - crelly? base with blue and silver glitter. It's gorgeous, but I do have to note that I had bad wear problems with this one, which is why I only tried it once. I need to try again and find out whether that was just a fluke.
    • unlabeled silver glitter mini - small & large hexes
    • (upside down) Unicorn Farts (Funky Fingers) - big bright-colored hexes - honestly I doubt I'll ever wear this but it was cheap - 3-for-$5, so that's, what, $1.66? - and it's pretty to look at (and the name is funny, which I have to admit was a factor). The reviews tend to bear me out on its basic unwearability, although the colors are really pretty..
    bottom row:
    • Yuletide Treasures (Pahlish) - mixed sizes & colors of glitter in a clear base (I had no luck finding other posts about this online, so here's another picture of mine!)
    • (upside down) Fires of Gallifrey (LynB) - orange crelly base with hexes in orange and I think pink? and maybe some shimmer too
    • I'm The Ultimate Fangirl (Dollish Polish) - a mix of big glitters in all different shapes and colors, in a clear base
    • After Party (Icing) - multicolor shards in a clear base. I don't care much for shards, really, but I had to try one! Shreds & shards have become sort of a thing lately, I think, but this one was the first one I ever saw.
    • Party Of Five Glitters (Wet n Wild Fast Dry) - mixed-size hexes in what you might call "Happy Birthday" colors, more or less (and the link here has an actual comparison of those two and a number of other multicolored glitters)

    So let's see, if I was trying to sort by the differences in these other than color and glitter shape, we have:
    • clear base (not surprisingly, these predominate): Your Present Required, Glitter Matters, Love Sprinkles, Evil Queen, Shake Your Money Maker, As If!, Yuletide Treasures, Unicorn Farts, I'm The Ultimate Fangirl, After Party, Party of Five Glitters
    • jelly base: I Volunteer As Tribute, Love Me Some Pie
    • crelly base: Look At the Flowers Lizzie, Live Long And Prosper, Fires of Gallifrey
    • matte glitter: Glitter Matters, As If!
    • holo glitter: The Deathly Hallows
    • texture: There's Snow One Like You
    (I started to do "meant as a topper" as a category, but honestly, that's nearly all of the clear-base ones, at least. Some of the others can be built to opaqueness, but really I would put some sort of undercoat under all of these, in most circumstances.)

    Sunday, January 11, 2015

    Playing with polish: Rid Of Me

    I am falling down on my nail of the day - I've had a mani on for several days and keep adding onto it and haven't even tweeted about it once. That's very uncharacteristic of me!

    (BTW, before I forget again, everybody knows about the Zoya promo, right? 3 polishes of your choice + a "mystery" set of three minis for $15. The code and the expiration date were both on Zoya's front page.)

    Returning to the NotD: I started earlier in the week with Nostalgic Rid Of Me. We're back to super-cloudy skies so I am not taking pictures, but I do see it on an existing picture of a nail wheel, so here you go:
    There's a picture of the whole filled-in wheel somewhere, too, but it stands out better in this picture - it the one lone blue over on the right side. Pretty, right? It is, but the problem is that it's also very sheer. I did three coats of Rid Of Me and I did wear it to work one day but I was not happy with it. There was visible nail line in a very unattractive way. So I solved that by putting Teal of Fortune (a Wet n Wild polish which is a very similar color, but opaque) on top of that, and then putting more Rid Of Me on top of it. Next time I'll have to remember just to start with an undercoat in the first place.

    Also, I tried out Snowflakes, the Color Club flakie, on my thumb, on top of the whole confection. It looks very pretty but it does not really look like what I think of as a flakie - it's not sheer enough. It looks more like a shifty silver glitter. But anyway, it's pretty, so I'll get over my conception or misconception of what a flakie is supposed to look like.


    By the way, I am still working on my new stash project, it's just going to be slow. It's mostly for myself, anyway - putting it up here just prods me about it.

    Saturday, January 10, 2015

    Llarowe sale goodies, with a mystery polish

    I ordered several things from Llarowe's sale that they were having right after the new year, including something a bit mysterious. I knew that it was called "City of Ashes" (and I love Cassie Clare's books, including one with that name) and I knew it was a gray glitter, but that was all I knew. But hey, it was on sale and how could you really go wrong with that? I think I happened to get the last bottle, because after I put it in my cart, it just kind of disappeared from the website. Which is a bit unusual. I didn't know what brand it was, but I didn't care much at the time, I figured I'd find out when I got the order. (And yeah, never mind that I seem to be collecting gray polishes at a slightly insane rate lately. That's just part of being a nail polish junkie, let's face it.)

    If you search for "city of ashes nail polish" on Google you get this (along with some links to other polishes with slightly different names, and a bunch of Cassie-Clare-related links):
      City of Ashes - Llarowe
      www.llarowe.com/shop-all/esmaltes-da-kelly/ekacity-of-ashes.html

    1. llarowe,llarowe.com,esmaltes da kelly,esmaltes da kelly nail polishnail polish,nail polish online,nail polish retail,brazilian nail polish,indie nail polish ...
    But if you try to follow that link, it's dead. It just gets you to a "bad link" page. (It looks like I put an ad in the middle of my post, doesn't it? Well, I don't do that kind of thing, normally, but today I just copied-and-pasted it in so you could see!)

    So today my polishes arrived, and - can you see this coming? City of Ashes is very pretty - and it's marked with the name and nothing else. I couldn't stand not at least knowing what brand it was, so I had to poke around on Llarowe's website armed with the hint above, and the bottle style does match Esmaltes da Kelly, which is one of those brands I was aware of and had heard good things about but have never seen. I knew she (Kelly, that is) had a blog and I knew it wasn't in English - that's about the limit of my knowledge there. I think I had poked around on the blog looking at swatches of something or other, but I did know that she has a line of polish, too. I guess she must actually be Brazilian, looking at the website. I had it in my head that her blog was in Spanish, but it isn't, so I'm guessing it must be Portuguese. (I don't know about you but I feel terribly ignorant when confronted with non-English websites. It's a luxury we English-speakers have, I guess, not to have to deal with translating all the time!) Google Translate is only a little bit of help - and especially with something like a nail polish blog that is presumably utterly full of idioms that (presumably) don't translate well. I didn't find any mention on the website there about anything City of Ashes, either - unless Translate is mistranslating that name, which is entirely possible. So I still don't know much more than I did, but in any case, apparently I accidentally got my hands on something unusual, because I can't find any mention of this polish anywhere. So that's actually fairly cool, in itself!

    Incidentally, Llarowe does have many other Esmaltes da Kelly polishes, and I also found them at Color4Nails. There is a Game of Thones line and a Disneyesque line but I don't see anything else that sounds like it would go with City of Ashes. So it remains a mystery - but I can live with that. Which is not to say I won't attempt to do some more research about it. (And if you have any input, let me know in comments, because I would definitely love to know where this came from!)

    I also got a couple of Color Club polishes for $2 each, which I'll get to - but the most expensive item was a Glisten & Glow polish. Here is the description of that one:
    "Gettin' Dirty with Disco Sally is mostly packed with bright pink microglitters in a clear base. Gold, red, pink, black and fuchsia microglitters are added to create the perfect sparkling super girly mix. Formula is textured with microglitters. not a chunky texture. 2 coats of Glisten & Glow HK Girl top coat will smooth it right out if you prefer!"
    I have a bottle of HK Girl (I love it, I think of it as Seche Vite without the bad smell) and a tin of Glisten & Glow cuticle balm, but that's it - I've never tried their color polishes. I have to admit I partly just bought this one because I like the name, but hey, it's a perfect Valentine's Day polish. (It's from the Studio 54 collection and here are the same swatches that Llarowe was using - down at the bottom of that post. I may wish I'd picked up some more of that collection, actually.)

    One of the Color Clubs is a flakie, which is why I bought it - Zoya discontinued my beloved Chloe, so I was in the market for something like that. That one is Snowflakes, and here's a comparison from Polish Insomniac. I'm guessing that Snowflakes is also now discontinued, since it's marked down so heavily. (But hmm, it's still available at Llarowe but it's no longer marked down, for what that's worth. For that matter it's marked "new" so I dunno, maybe they got a new shipment? It's another mystery.)

    The other Color Club also looks like a top-coat sort of polish - it is Hot Couture. Looks like holo glitter in a pale-pink base. I think when I went to look it up before I found this mani which is what sold me. After all, I have about a zillion dark pinks similar to that OPI to put it over! Apparently the original collection this was in was A French Kiss - here's some swatches from Pailette. I will probably try this and say "It's too girly!" because that's what I've said about similar polishes in the past, but again, almost Valentine's so it's a good time of the year for girly.

    (If the sun comes out tomorrow I'll take a picture. But I think I'll go ahead and post this now without one, what the heck.)

    Wednesday, January 7, 2015

    More recent acquisitions

    I'm still catching up with the pictures. If you haven't figured this out yet, I only take daylight pictures, normally - except for the occasional nail-of-the-day picture taken with the phone under the fluorescent lighting at work. I don't have a lightbox setup and I don't really have a place to put one if I had it. So this time of year when we have a lot of cloudy days, I am kind of stuck. When the sun comes out, I tend to take a bunch of pictures. Last year I ended up posting every day in January because I had taken so many pictures I had enough to string them out over the course of the month - and into February, for that matter.

    Last year I sorted my stash by brand, instead of by color which is what I normally do, and took pictures. This year's winter project is that I'm attempting to sort it by finish - creme/shimmer/glitter etc. - which is considerably more difficult. I did get some pictures so the first installment will probably appear pretty soon.

    We did finally get some sun this week, thank goodness. I have some degree of seasonal affective disorder and when it stays cloudy too long I start to get really down.

    Okay, so here's a couple things I bought a month or more ago, and a couple that are more recent:
    There are two OPI Texas polishes, which I bought from Sleek Nail back in November (along with Here Today Aragon Tomorrow, not pictured) - that's Y'all Come Back Now Ya Hear, the orange, and Houston We Have A Purple, which is not really all that purple. Both of them are "sorbet" finishes, kind of in the jelly/crelly range of things - more jelly than crelly, going by the one of the two I've tried. Then sometime in December I saw the Coca-Cola collection at the grocery store and I bought Today I Accomplished Zero - because, y'know, it's copper glitter and that is pretty much my favorite thing in the world. The last one there is another grocery-store purchase, from after Christmas, Sinful Love Sprinkles. I was afraid if I didn't grab it when I saw it, it would disappear - although in fact I've seen it all over the place, since. If you haven't already seen it, well, it's pale-pink heart-shaped glitter. I don't have anything like that so I thought I needed it for Valentine's Day!

    This picture has the same bottle of Love Sprinkles in it, but it's also got another polish that I'm pretty sure I never took a picture of before:
    This is NOPI Guys & Galaxies, which I believe is an Ipsy exclusive - it was in the December Ipsy bag. I gave a lot of the other stuff away (and never got around to taking a picture), but naturally I had to keep this. I already have plenty of silver polishes, but I don't have one exactly like this. You know how that goes...

    And then here's my pair from Virago that you saw half of on my nails already:
    This is Mistletoe Kisses and "Prototype 003" - Mistletoe Kisses doesn't look all that green next to the brightness that is the prototype, but it is in fact green, as well, just a more subdued green.

    And that gets us more-or-less up to date on what I've been buying lately. I do have a Llarowe order in the works, from their after-the-holidays sale, but that hasn't come in yet.