Thursday, September 21, 2017

Victorian End

This is SquareHue Victorian End, from the 1900s collection
I didn't put this in my top 4 SquareHues, but I think it was in the shortlist. SquareHue does some good purples but this is the one I decided my favorite because it's different. It's sort of a dull dark plum, with shimmer. That doesn't make it sound too great, but obviously I really like it. (I said it was different, but actually it looks really similar to the polish below it on the wheel. I checked and the one pointing at the wheel is Victorian End, as it should be, and the one below it is Vaclavske Namesti, from the Prague collection, which was only a couple of months before the 1900s one - November 2014 and January 2015. Anyway, Vaclavske Namesti is similar but even more grayed-out than Victorian End, and while it has shimmer I think it's less obvious. I like them both, but they are not dupes. I do think it was a bit odd to release these two so close together, though.) It does seem pretty appropriate for the its royal subject matter, though.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017


This is Cirque Lichen:
It's a shimmery olive with gold flash. I tend to stay away from olive colors because they're too yellow, but this one works for me - maybe because the shimmer is golden rather than yellow? I'm never sure. Anyway, a totally beautiful color and great for fall. This was from the Alchemy collection several years ago and it's discontinued.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017


Here is Zoya Vespa, a Pixie Dust:
I showed a mani picture of this picture months ago, but apparently I never put up the swatch picture, so I'm remedying that. It's a pale green, but it doesn't seem to be as pale as it appears on this swatch - it's more like the bottle color here than the swatch color, as I recall.

Here's one of the NOTD pictures for comparison:

Monday, September 18, 2017


This Pretty Serious VT100 (named after a terminal, making it pretty much the ultimate geeky nail polish):
Pretty Serious has just re-done their website (it was supposed to be up in July, so September is pretty much par for the course). This polish is discontinued but the new website has a "museum" which is meant to show all the old polishes, eventually, and VT100 is from their very first collection (called Hello World) which is all that's in the museum right now.  This is a really beautiful polish, but PS has some other oldies-but-goodies for sale on the new website, so keep an eye out if you're interested in this polish; it might make a reappearance at some point! (Note: I have no inside information whatsoever here. I just know that they've done limited-edition re-releases before, and there's certainly no reason to think they're stopping that.)

Friday, September 15, 2017

NOTD: unicorn pee!... I mean, So Jelly

As usual, crappy picture, but you can see the shimmer so that (to me, anyway) makes up for the very obvious defects! (Clarification: I meant the defects in the picture, not the polish.)
This is KBShimmer So Jelly, which contains the (so-called) "unicorn pee" pigment which is very hard to find and thus much prized among nail polish junkies. I had never actually seen it in person before, but it is really beautiful and I'm glad I tried it out. This is part of a set of 4 polishes but they are all now showing up as out of stock on the KBS website. (I checked because I was going to order another one.) Anyway, this has a dark raspberry-red base (you can see at the base of my nails what it looked like on the first coat) and then the unicorn pee stuff shows up as a sort of coppery-red shimmer. You can't really see it in all lights but it gives the polish a lot of depth even when you can't really see it. When you can, it's quite awesome.

Added: for the record, since I've been on a kick of mattifying practically everything lately - I did not put matte top-coat on this one. I think I used my dwindling bottle of BL Hardwear, and it came out nice & shiny.

Clinique "Non-stop pop" set

I bought this a month or so ago (I think maybe it was when they had double points for VIBs) and I never got around to showing it. I've got so much lipstick and I didn't totally fall in love with these colors, so I'm probably just going to give these as Christmas gifts. I may keep the tin!

Thursday, September 14, 2017


I finally got around to buying my first Enchanted Polish, Fairy:
I was experimenting, so these three swatches are all Fairy - over a dark pink, over a pastel (First Wings First, I think), and alone. I should have tried over black - I suspect that might be the best bet. I think it looks better alone than over the two pinky colors I tried. Anyway, this polish is made of very fine flakies, with some holo stuff mixed in.

Enchanted Polish seems to have finally gotten to the point where the polishes stay on the website for a few days. And they even had a sale! Times have changed there, a bit. Maybe they are doing bigger runs of the polishes?

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

NOTD: Rory, matte

This is Zoya Rory, which is a summer polish from a few years ago, I think, with Matte All The Things matte top-coat:
It's a medium-toned berry/red-violet with a ton of silver shimmer - so much that with the matte top-coat, little "pools" of shimmer become visible on the nail. It doesn't look bad but it's a bit of an odd effect. (Maybe I should have shaken the bottle some more.) This picture was taken in shade and it looks much darker than it does in real life.

(I checked, it's from the Surf collection, which was in 2012 - the same collection with Myrta and Carly and Zuza. It's still available.)

Added: a 3rd-day update: this was chipping a bit so I put Where's The Party Canon At on top of it, then a coat of Gelous and another coat of Matte All The Things. So there's a lot of coats on my nails now, but so far they're holding up fine.

I Wand It That Way

Here is I Wand It That Way, from Colourpop's new line of nail polish:
I didn't try to swatch this alone, because you're just not going to be able to see much. This shows it over the two other polishes from that line that I bought (blue and pale lilac) and you can see those same colors without it above that. I love this polish - I took a mani picture of it but it really looks more like the swatch above than it does the picture at that link. It's very pretty and iridescent and hey, it's currently on sale for $3! (and the regular price is only $6, anyway)

(It's not on the Colourpop "discontinued items" page, I checked, so I'm guessing it's just a sale and that they're not discontinuing these. At least I hope not!)

Tuesday, September 12, 2017


Here is Square Hue Y2K, which was in my favorites list:
It's an almost-black base with silver shimmer. It's another favorite that took me by surprise because it didn't really seem like anything unusual at first.

This post shows the 1990s collection which included this polish and Vogue, which was also in my favorites. I liked both these polishes from the beginning, but I would not have said at the time that they would be in my all-time favorite Square Hues.

SquareHue favorites

I showed my SquareHue stash a couple of weeks ago, but I didn't get around to picking favorites. There are a lot of polishes I like in there, but I re-swatched many of them and eventually came up with a shortlist of 8, which I then narrowed down to a top 4.

This is my top 4 - Parizska, Y2K, Vogue, and Lake Louise.

I'm going to do a new post for Y2K because I've never shown it by itself, but here's the old post on it. Below are the other three.

Parizska is a charcoal gray with silver glitter:
(This is from the Prague collection back in 2014; if you scroll down here there's a picture of the full set.)

Vogue is from the same collection as Y2K (I'm surprised I ended up with two from the same collection!) - which was the 1990s.
If you squint at the label picture above you may be able to see that the year on the bottom of the bottle is 1990 - I think that was the year the Madonna song came out. I remember looking at this polish and going, "Oh, another dark red," but this one somehow stands out. The description I found for it just said shimmer but it seems to me to be more of a pearlescent finish.

And then there's Lake Louise, from the Hike Banff collection in early 2016.
A pale - but not super-pale - and very shimmery blue. Since I don't like pastels on me, I didn't expect to like this, but obviously (since it's instead in my favorites) I was wrong!

Saturday, September 9, 2017


Picture Polish Flirt:
This and the other PP that I showed yesterday are my entire piCture pOlish stash. I like this color a lot and I loved the other one, but I had wear issues with both of them and so I pretty much gave up on this brand after that - they're just too expensive to fart around with. (They're an Australian brand, which partly accounts for the high price. In the US they're available at Live Love Polish and probably other places as well.) (To be fair, though, other people love them, so I assume not everybody has wear issues like I do with them. Sometimes I have extremely cranky nails.)

This polish made me a little nostalgic when I realized it was one of the three similar colors in this picture. There had been a couple of little experiments before that, but that post there was where I really started what has become an ongoing series - if you've looked at this blog at all you've probably figured this out already. I call them "bottle and wheel" pictures and they're just a way to catalog my stash, really. I started out almost a year and a half ago with pictures of several polishes at a time, on my ten-year-old Canon in natural light through my bedroom windows, and I've ended up retaking a lot of those pictures, and I'm now doing one polish at a time under fluorescent lights on my iPhone SE (which I bought when the Canon and my old iPhone gave up the ghost more or less simultaneously). They're still not fabulously great pictures but at least they're more consistent. And this series may go on forever - or at least until I run out of steam, eventually. (Certainly I'm going to keep doing this for new polishes, indefinitely.)

Friday, September 8, 2017

Violet Femme

This is Picture Polish Violet Femme:
(Yeah, I know, I'm capitalizing it all wrong, but it's late and I'm too cranky to bother.) I still think this is one of the most gorgeous colors ever, but I remember it being balky to apply and not wearing well, unfortunately. I didn't especially have that experience swatching it here, but sometimes when you're just doing one fake nail, you just don't notice that kind of thing as much. This is three coats - if you blow this picture up you can see the coats at the base of the nail quite clearly. (I always intend to do it like that - so you can see the layers - and it just doesn't quite happen all the time, but it totally did what it's meant to, here.)

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Amazon top sellers in skincare

A bit of a disclaimer: I don't know that these two products are the top selling skincare items on Amazon, but they are both things that I only became aware of because both of them were mentioned in some blog or other as top-sellers on Amazon:

"Insanely popular on Amazon" (The Zoe Report):
Teddie Organics Rosehip Oil, 4 oz
I bought the 4-ounce size rather than the 1-oz size because it seemed like a better value - about $13 for 1 ounce vs $21.50 for four. One ounce is just not very much, was my reasoning. Although I do only use a few drops at a time, so if you want to experiment with the small size first, it's still not a bad deal.

And then I'm not sure where I first saw this one, but I had seen it someplace and it was on sale during Prime Day and so I was like, well, might as well try it. (Notice this also has rosehip in it. That's the trendy skincare thing right now. Vitamin C, what a concept.)
Lilyana Naturals Eye Cream, 1.3 oz
(Bear in mind that given the generous amount you get here, you don't have to confine it to just your eyes!)

I'm really into layering skin products lately - "start with the lightest one" was advice I read somewhere, and it does seem to work pretty well. I like both of these products a lot, but they're just part of my arsenal of skincare products. Given that, it's difficult for me to know what really works best out of the number of products I am using, but I do think something in here is working. (Despite my flip comment above, I think rosehip/vitamin C is probably one of the winners.) And I don't think you have to spend $100 and up on skincare to get good stuff!

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Assorted makeup

I got this eyeshadow from the Space.NK sale along with the Terribly polishes. I actually like this little shadow a lot. It's a good color for me as a base.
I believe the color is Pink Ribbon. The brand is Lord & Berry. (I paid maybe $3 for it.)

Then there is this Urban Decay lipstick, which I've had for quite a while - it's the Basquiat line, which I think came and went very quickly. It's not a bad color but I don't really love it as much as I thought I would (isn't that always the way?

This is the end of the box, on which is written the name of the lipstick (which is Exhibition).
Added: this is what happens when I write entries in the middle of the night: I forget the picture that shows the actual product. (Although yeah, it's essentially the color you can see above.)

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Wood I Lie To You

Finger Paints has a new(ish) sub-brand called Hard As Steel, and the summer release for that line was these bottles with bamboo-themed caps. This one is Wood I Lie To You.
I like this color, but you know since it's a creme that I feel morally bound to put something else on top of it. In this case it was Where's The Party Canon At? from the My Little Pony collection. You can see it as #6 on this wheel, and Wood I LIe To You is #4. They worked quite well together!

Monday, September 4, 2017

Whatever Lola Wants, Naked

Here are the last two Midnight Garden polishes - both of these are still available as individual polishes, as well, I believe. I think both of these are shades that have been around for some years, for that matter. And both of them are sheers.

Whatever Lola Wants
Created with Kelly Ripa
"sassy sparkling lilac/lavender" (sheer shimmer)

Naked (sheer)
"clean bare beige"

Ways you can help with Harvey relief

Sunday, September 3, 2017


I'm not necessarily going to comment a whole lot on each of these items because these are things that I haven't worn much and I have decided they're old enough that they need to be discarded. That doesn't mean there's anything wrong with them, I just haven't used them. And I'm not super-vigilant about throwing things away on a schedule but eventually I do root around in my stash of stuff I'm mostly not using and weed it out.

The OCC creme stuff has faded badly. (Although I scratched the surface of it, literally, and it's still much more pink underneath.) This was part of an OCC set I bought in very early 2015 - I talk in that entry about Sephora Flash being a new thing - and that was the start of my career as a Sephora junkie. And that makes this nearly 2-1/2 years old, so yeah, it's time for it to go.
(I definitely am not going to going to comment on "Pleasure Model".)

This is Bombshell Eye Base, and the color is Submissive. Actually I never understood why it was supposed to be a base considering that it is such a pretty color.

This is the Bellapierre powder - I put some in the lid so you could see what it looks like:

This is an Estee Lauder shadow duo that was in a gift-with-purchase set:
Oh, and there was a Josie Maran bottle in the picture up top that was supposed to be just argan oil, but I think I picked up the wrong bottle and the one pictured is something else. But I did have argan oil, and I actually googled "shelf life of argan oil" and found varying opinions. It was enough to make me decide it was time for it to go, though.

One more:

Ways you can help with Harvey relief

Saturday, September 2, 2017

What I bought this summer

Polish I've bought since June 1 (links some pictures below):
China Glaze: 2 My Little Pony polishes plus Fairy Dust
Colourpop: 3 polishes
Deborah Lippmann: Midnight Garden set (5 minis)
Enchanted Polish Fairy
Finger Paints Wood I Lie To You
KL Polish: Ocean Drive + 3 more (4 polishes total)
OPI: 1 Iceland polish (pictures still to come)
Sally Hansen: 1 discontinued Miracle Gel, 1 Crayola-colored Insta-Dri 
SquareHue: June and July 2-polish sets; 1 2016 3-polish set (7 polishes total)
Terrybly: 2 discounted polishes 
Wet n Wild: 3 Wonder Gels

plus a couple of nail-related items:
acrylic polish drawers
32 oz. of polish remover

That's really not as terrible as I thought. On the other hand, I count 20-odd polishes plus the 5 minis. If you look at it that way, it's something like 8 polishes a month, which is kind of a lot. (Two a week, on average. That really adds up.)

I was thinking, didn't I buy some Pretty Serious? But no, that was in May, so out of the date range that I set.

Ways you can help with Harvey relief

Selections from the list above:

(yeah, ok, I bought some non-nail-polish stuff in there, too)

Friday, September 1, 2017

That's What She Said

Here's KL Polish's That's What She Said:
It's sort of a metallic "rose silver" (that's what the website says). 

(I'm hoping this will be more flattering on me than Orly Rage, which I thought I would like but which just looks awful on me.)

Here's a history of the phrase "That's what she said" because this feels incomplete to me without mentioning the name of the polish when it's something interesting.

Also, we finally got mail last night - they haven't been delivering mail all week due to Harvey, of course - and as I figured would be the case, my Enchanted Polish that I ordered was in the mail. It's the first one I've ever bought. I will naturally have pictures of that later on.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Rain, rain, go away

A little less than a week ago I said this:
Harvey is not supposed to hit us head-on, so we'll be fine, I'm sure. We're mostly just likely to get rained on a lot.
And well, that's true, for my husband and myself, as it turned out. We got rained on a lot, we couldn't really go further than the parking lot of our apartments for several days, we couldn't go to work (and our work ended up closing for most of that time anyway). But that was about the extent of our personal inconvenience. Where we live turns out to be the high ground of the whole town, I think, and furthermore, we live on the second floor. The power went out for a while on Friday but has stayed on ever since. And we had plenty of food and reading material and computer games to while away the time. But if you spent much time watching the news, you may have seen people who live not a mile from me. Where we live is some distance away from a big creek (we are not in the area near the reservoirs that were overflowing, we are on the other side of Houston from that) and the creek quickly overtopped its banks Saturday night and started crawling up through the neighborhoods around it. There was a little water at the far end of our street, and I'm told if you went further it quickly got deeper. That's about all I know that you couldn't get from the news or from Facebook (and I stopped looking at Facebook after a while, because too many people I know were telling stories about the water in their houses, and it was freaking me out, quite honestly). We were incredibly fortunate.

(Added, and I wish this had occurred to me before: Ways you can help)

I could stick a nail polish picture in here just to remind you what blog this is, but I've still got the same manicure (I Wand It That Way over Pixi-lated) that I had on a week ago. (Tomorrow it's going to have to go.) -- Well, ok, here's a repeat. The mani picture kind of sucked so here's just the wheel swatches - Pixi-lated is the blue on top and below that it has I Wand It That Way added:

(I really was going to post this later, but I accidentally hit post, so oh well.)

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Square Hue stash

I thought I had exactly 25 SquareHue polishes, but as usual, there are strays. The lovely 5x5 grid is not actually correct. It matches the number on my spreadsheet, but what I finally figured out was that I didn't add the three I got most recently to the spreadsheet, so the numbers are off. I actually have 28, and I'll add those in later on.
My SquareHues are scattered chronologically all over the past several years - I bought a few sets in late 2014, cancelled in early 2015, subscribed again for a few months at the end of 2015 and into early 2016, and have started up again this year. And I also bought one 2016 set in a sale recently. So I have at least a couple of sets for every year since 2014. 2014 had a city theme, 2015 went decade by decade, 2016 was an adventure theme, and 2017 is various kinds of dances. I have them separated below by color, not by set, though.

I always try to take pictures of Square Hue bottles from the back, because the front label covers the polish up.

This is Odhani (from 2017), Lake Louise (2016), Akamai (2016), Lodgepole Pine (2016) and Na Prikope (2014):

Vaclavske Namesti (2014), Baby Baby Baby (2015), Victorian End (2015), Ikaika (2016), Gibson Girl (2015):

Nani (2016), Bird Fling (2015), Limeña (2017), Vogue (2015), Y2K (2015)

First Flight (2015), Parizska (2014), Hurricane (2015), Never Forget (2015), Idol (2015)

Johnston Canyon (2016), Via Sant'andrea (2014), Desert Storm (2015), Olympiad (2015), Via Montenapoleone (2014)

For the record, here are the sets I have. I have the full set of three for all of them except the 2017 ones - those I only have two of each three.
The three polishes that weren't in these pictures were from the oldest and the newest sets, as it happened; they were Via Della Spiga, from the Milan set in 2014, and then Norteña, from Marinera, and Lengha from Kalbelia, both from this summer.

(I'mna have to think about favorites. I'll do another entry for that, when I decide something.)

Note that the link above for Via Della Spiga is a destash post and I remembered that, but it wasn't in the box with the rest of the destash candidates. But it's a really pretty red and I think I had been waffling and that's why it wasn't there. I suspect it's staying for now.