Sunday, January 30, 2011

China Glaze - First Dawn

The dark grey charcoal metallic above is China Glaze First Dawn.  It has tiny flecks of multi-colored glitter in it that don't show up very clearly but make for a nice overall shimmer.  As with most metallics I've tried, there is a little bit of streaking but I like the look of it.

Here's the polish before I started stamping:

I used flowers from GCOCL (fauxnad) plate F01.

If you don't have the GCOCL plates, there are very similar flowers on Konad plates m51 and m57:

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Confetti - Purple Reigns

To continue with the Confetti swatches I started last week, here is Purple Reigns.  Compared to most purples I own, I think Purple Reigns has nice warm tone vs. the cool, blue-ish tones that are more typical.  I thought Purple Reigns might be close to OPI's Pamplona Purple based on the bottles:

But once I saw these in the sun I realized they aren't dupes:

Purple Reigns has a warmer tone and is a little bit darker than Pamplona Purple.

Sinful Colors - See You Soon

See You Soon is a really dark blue shimmer with a black base.  When I was at Walgreens I couldn't decide between this polish and What's My Name so I got both even though they looked pretty similar in the bottle:

  Here's a quick comparison:

Though they both have a black base, See You Soon has blue shimmer throughout while What's My Name just has a sprinkle of glitter.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Sinful Colors - What's My Name

Since I've been so pleased with the Confetti polishes from CVS, I decided to try Sinful Colors nail polish from Walgreens.  Sinful Colors is also $1.99 and 3-free (no toluene, formaldehyde, or DBP).  The color above is called What's My Name and it's a black with purple / blue glitter.  The glitter is kind of holographic so it's purple or blue depending on how the light hits it.  I think this is another nice alternative to solid black.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Del Sol Color Changing Polish - Girls Night Out

I was so excited to see this huge display of Del Sol color changing nail polish at Walgreens yesterday.  I remember these used to be sold for $10 each in touristy souvenir shops and mall kiosks, so when I saw them selling 3 for $10 (or $3.99 individually) the price was right and I had to try!

Del Sol polishes change color when exposed to UV light, so unlike mood-changing polishes that change with temperature, these only change color in sunlight.  A big sticker of a hibiscus on the front of the bottle tells you what the sunlight color will be.

The first color I tried was Girls Night Out, which is bright coral color with orange shimmer when indoors.  Reminds me of the pink and orange swirl in Rainbow Sherbert ice cream:

When I got outside , the color started changing in just a few seconds into this dark rosey plum color with gold shimmer:

I was expecting a darker purple to match the hibiscus sticker that you can see on the bottle just below my nails, but it's possible the color didn't change all the way due to some UV blocking ingredient in my OPI top coat.  I'll check tomorrow when the sun is out again to see if top coat makes a difference.  Overall I thought the effect was pretty cool and it was an interesting novelty if not the perfect color for me.

Edit (1/26): I tried Girls Night Out without top coat and got the same color shown above--not dark purple but still a pretty color.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Rescue Beauty Lounge - Cherry Love

I ordered Cherry Love from Rescue Beauty Lounge ($18) because the description was so intriguing:
"Popsicle-fuschia, the love child of hot pink and sizzling red. When pink is too tame and red is too expected, give this glamorous shade a try." --Rescue Beauty Lounge
The cherry red color was great, but the formula wasn't as amazing as other RBL polishes I've tried.  What I usually love about Rescue Beauty polishes is how the polish magically levels itself out so that there are no ridges, but I thought Cherry Love was a little bit streaky and my bottle has gotten kind of goopy since I first bought it about a month ago.  Disappointing for $18, but I obscured the streaks with a thick layer of top coat so it's still usable.

The rose is from GCOCL plate A01:

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Confetti - Pop The Cork Purple (Russian Navy Dupe?)

Pop The Cork Purple is a navy blue with purple and pink shimmer.  It looks like a purple shimmer in the bottle, but once you start applying it the base color is clearly dark blue.  I originally picked it up because I thought it might be a dupe for OPI's Russian Navy, which is one of my favorite dark colors:

Can you tell the difference?  Though I love OPI and am a huge fan of the pro-wide brush, I paid $8.50 for Russian Navy at Ulta compared to $1.99 for Pop The Cork Purple at CVS...

Friday, January 21, 2011

Confetti - Smitten

Smitten is a dark purple with blue and pink shimmer, though sometimes it appears more blue than purple.  I really enjoy the complexity of color in this polish.  In the shadow it looks like any dark polish so it's not too dramatic indoors, but when the light hits it at the right angle it has an amazing shimmer.  As with the other Confetti polishes I've tried, application was smooth and flawless though this one definitely needed three coats for the color to build.  So glad I bought this, and for only $1.99!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Review: Shany Fauxnad Plates

Edit (4/11): Please note this review was written in January 2011 when the price was $15.  As of April, it looks like the price on Amazon has gone up significantly (~$38) and it may continue to fluctuate.

I'm always on the lookout for a good deal on fauxnad plates to add to my collection, and I saw a new "brand" pop up on Amazon in December called Shany.  The Shany plates looked similar to the Bundle Monster plates but they were selling for a little cheaper ($15 vs. $18) and came with four more plates (25 plates vs. 21 plates).  I was curious so I went ahead and ordered them, since I wouldn't mind having dupes of some Bundle Monster plates that I've lost.

As I suspected, 21 of the 25 plates are identical to the Bundle Monster set, numbered B1 through B21.  Here are pics of the 4 "extra" plates:

As far as I can tell the metal is the same quality as the Bundle Monster plates, though one of my plates wasn't cut properly and looked like the machine had taken a bite out of it:

If you already have the Bundle Monster set then the Shany plates are duplicative, but if you were thinking of buying Bundle Monster I'd recommend these.  60 cents a plate is a pretty tough deal to beat, especially considering original Konad plates sell for ~10x that at $7 a plate.  Though I don't think the Bundle Monster / Shany plates work quite as well as Konad, the majority of images do work and the quality is fairly close.

As always with fauxnad plates, remember to remove the thin layer of plastic on top and be careful of the sharp edges.  I've accidentally cut myself on the edge of a fauxnad plate before, which I didn't believe was possible until it actually happened to me.

Hope that's helpful!  Feel free to let me know if you have any questions.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Confetti - Cherries Jubilee

Cherries Jubilee from Confetti is a dark magenta color.  The first coat matches the color in the bottle, but after three coats (as above) the color gets darker, like a soft red with a touch of pink.  Added some hearts from fauxnad plate M12 for a pre- Valentine's Day flourish:

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Confetti - Dressed To The 9's

Dressed To The 9's is the first color I tried from Confetti--it's a rich metallic red with a faint gold shimmer.  The bottle has big swirls of shimmery gold in it but after application the gold only shows up in bright light.  I thought I'd be disappointed by that, but overall the red color is really gorgeous.  I used three thin coats (though two is probably enough), and it's lasted for days without chips using CND Stickey base coat and OPI top coat.  Definitely worth $1.99!

Confetti Nail Polish at CVS

I'm usually a little wary of cheap polish because I worry about potentially toxic ingredients, so this display of Confetti nail polish at CVS really caught my attention.  It's advertised as 3 free (no toluene, formaldehyde, or DBP) and it's only $1.99 a bottle!  I read online that the manufacturer is being sued by Sally Hansen so they'll likely be discontinued when the displays run out.  I was really impressed with the first two bottles I tried so I went back over the weekend and picked up a bunch of colors that might be promising.  .

Here's a quick wheel of the colors I bought; I'll try to post swatches soon in case anyone else is interested in picking them up at CVS while they last:

One piece of advice though, make sure to open the bottle and check out the brush before you purchase.  Some of the bottles have defective brushes--it looks like they were a little too long so they got bent in the bottle.  Not great quality control, but for $1.99 a bottle I'm willing to put in a little extra effort to check each bottle before I buy.

If you accidentally buy a bottle with a defective brush or decide you don't like a color, don't forget that CVS has a 100% beauty satisfaction guarantee and you can return opened products with no questions asked as long as you have the receipt.  Also if you sign up for their free Extracare Beauty Club you get 10% off your first beauty purchase, $5 back for every $50 spent on beauty products, and $3 on your birthday.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

OPI Black Onyx

Comparing Never Enough Shoes earlier reminded me how much I love OPI's Black Onyx so I thought I might as well go for another black manicure today with a white bow from Konad plate m56.  I don't wear solid black polish very often but when I do I always reach for Black Onyx because it has the perfect blackest black pigment.  The application is really smooth and it goes opaque in two coats and then lasts forever without chipping.  Below is another pic taken in the shade--you can see how glossy the finish is:

Both pics are two coats of Black Onyx without top coat.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Sephora by OPI - Never Enough Shoes

Never Enough Shoes from Sephora by OPI is a solid black with a bit of red, green, and gold glitter.  I was hoping it would look a little different from standard black so I was disappointed to see that the glitter didn't show up very well.

I compared Never Enough Shoes (on the right) to my favorite solid black, Black Onyx (middle).  On the left is Baby It's Coal Outside, which I wore yesterday.  At first I thought the polishes might be comparable but Coal Outside is more of a charcoal color with dense silver microglitter whereas Never Enough Shoes is a darker black and the glitter is less apparent.  Not sure I'd wear it again since the color isn't very unique--I'd prefer Coal Outside when looking for an alternative to black.

Edit (2/12/11):  I did end up wearing Never Enough Shoes again for a Valentine's Day look and posted more pics here.

OPI Baby It's Coal Outside

Above is Baby It's Coal Outside from OPI, which is a black polish with silver microglitter.  I stamped a silver flower pattern from Bundle Monster plate BM12 using China Glaze Millenium but I don't think it was an ideal combination.  I really liked this pattern but I think it looks a little grainy due to the shimmer / glitter in the base color.

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