Archive for January, 2013

China Glaze Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away Collection Swatches

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Originally, I was going to split this collection into two posts but, to make up for my absenteeism, I decided to photo-bomb you all. The China Glaze Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away Collection is, I believe, China Glaze’s first foray into the indie glitter aesthetic. Out of 12, 3 polishes fit into that category. Since the indie glitter phenomenon happened while I was gone, my experience with them is limited. I don’t really feel qualified to pass judgment on how China Glaze’s interpretation of the trend stacks up in comparison to the originals. However, as far as the rest of the collection - overall, I liked it. My one criticism is that the collection isn’t as thematically cohesive as I usually prefer, but there’s something in it for everyone.

China Glaze Escaping Reality

China Glaze Escaping Reality is a vibrant, bright hot pink creme that borders on neon. It dries a bit matte as neon-ish colors tend to do. This swatch is 3 coats. It applied pretty well, especially considering that neons typically do not. This is 3 coats, but it would have been good at 2. This photo is a bit inaccurate – in real life, the color leans blue.

China Glaze Whirled Away

China Glaze Whirled Away is 1 of the 3 indie glitter-esque polishes in this collection. It’s thin black bar glitter, black medium hex glitter, and very large white hex glitter suspended in a clear base. Like I explained before, I’m not very experienced with these types of polishes. A few more learned bloggers have noted that the fish & dab method is best with these larger hex glitter polishes. That’s what I did for this photo and it worked pretty well for me. Once I had all the glitter placed the way I wanted, I topped it with a very thick coat of Gelous to fill the crevasses left by the dabbing. In this swatch, I layered Whirled Away over Escaping Reality.

China Glaze Water You Waiting For

China Glaze Water You Waiting For is probably my favorite from this collection. It’s composed of blue micro glitter, very small green hex glitter, and medium blue hex glitter in a blue tinted base. The glitter is buildable - this is what it looks like at 4 coats with absolutely no undie. I used 3 coats of Gelous to smooth it out.

China Glaze It's A Trap-eze

China Glaze It’s A Trap-eze is packed densely with a ton of glitter – I spotted aqua, green, purple, silver, yellow, red, and white. The sizes seem to be either medium hex and very small hex. All of that glitter is suspended in a bluish white base – not quite jelly but definitely translucent. This swatch is 4 coats of It’s A Trap-eze topped with 3 coats of Gelous. I didn’t like the look of this at 4 coats – it looked busy and clumpy. With polishes like this, I always think, the more coats, the better – and I always, always regret it. It was really lovely at 2 coats and I should have left well-enough alone. When I wear it again, I plan to layer a single coat over a light blue.

China Glaze Surreal Appeal

China Glaze Surreal Appeal is a vivid salmon-ish, coral pink creme. This is 3 coats. The application was finicky, thick but patchy at the same time. It all evened out at 3 coats.

China Glaze Running in Circles

China Glaze Running in Circles is a dazzling, glow-y grass-green glass-fleck glitter (woot! alliteration!) with a transparent grass-green tinted base. The shade leans a bit yellow and the flecks give it a foil-like finish. The photo simply does not do this color justice. This is 3 coats of color with 3 coats of Gelous. Running in Circles is a topcoat cannibal for sure.

China Glaze Igniting Love

China Glaze Igniting Love is a mango toned red crelly. I wore it as an NOTD. The color applied exceptionally well, glided on with minimal effort. I did 3 coats because I had VPL at 2. Although this color isn’t exactly unique, I really liked it. Orange based reds tend to be flattering on darker skin tones like my own. I go ages without wearing red but every time I wear a good red, I totally get why it is such a beloved nail color.  I know I rag on companies for releasing reds all the time, but I’ll eat my words and stop hating for a minute (but just one minute).

China Glaze Hanging in the Balance

China Glaze Hanging in the Balance is a very well pigmented bright medium sky blue crème. Gorgeous, but definitely a stainer so beware. This is 3 coats - because it’s so pigmented, it would have been perfect at 2. This photo is a bit inaccurate - it’s a more saturated blue in person.

China Glaze Bend Over Backwards

China Glaze Bend Over Backwards is a glowy orange toned shimmery red. The brushstrokes disappear once it’s dry. This is 3 coats but it was good at 2. This color was my least favorite in the set and I felt like it didn’t fit the collection’s wacky, whimsical theme.

China Glaze Get Carried Away

China Glaze Get Carried Away is very small black and silver hex glitter, black bar glitter, and large black, copper, and silver hex glitter suspended in a black tinted base. It was tough to apply without using the dabbing method. This swatch is 1 coat of Carried Away over Bend Over Backwards and two coats of Gelous to smooth it out. Ommorphia put this over Def Defying which turned out to be a waaaaaaay better color combo.

China Glaze Def Defying

China Glaze Def Defying is a yellowed based Shrek green creme. For me, the application was finicky – it took about 4 coats to even out the patchiness.

China Glaze Creative Fantasy

And, finally, China Glaze Creative Fantasy a bright neon-ish purple crelly. LOVED the color - very flattering. The formula is thin so it took about 4 coats to get to this level of opacity.

*whew* *wipes sweat of brow* I have a huge swatching back log from the recent lack of posting so stay tuned for a lot of great stuff coming up soon. : )

What do you guys think about this collection? Which shades made it in to your stash and why?

_____

Disclaimer: This collection was sent for review by China Glaze.

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Sephora by OPI It’s Real vs. OPI The Man with the Golden Gun

Monday, January 14th, 2013

OPI TMWTGG vs SOPI IT'S REAL

By now, the novelty of the flakey gold top coat has warn off a bit. Almost every major brand, and many smaller/indie brands, have released their rendition of the gold leaf top coat. Two gold flake polishes have made their way into my collection, so here is a comparison of the two. I wish that I had Zoya Gilty to add to this comparison. Believe me, I felt compelled to buy it and the battle to refrain from doing so was hard fought. From swatches online, Gilty looks very similar to OPI The Man With the Golden Gun so I had a nail polish Sophie’s Choice. I love both brands and feel like I need to collect everything they release, mostly for the purpose of having an adequate “library” of polishes for this blog. Second, I am a total sucker for gimmicky polishes. However, the price tag that these polishes carry was a major deterrent to the “I need to own it just to own it” reasoning that I typically apply to my purchases. (I mean, let’s face it for a second… When you hoard nail polish, you probably don’t need anything because chances are your collection already contains something similar). In the end, I couldn’t justify owning two very similar polishes in the $30+ price tag range. Once I made that decision, the next issue was deciding which one to get. A lot of factors were taken into consideration. First, I love James Bond, love, and I especially loved Skyfall. The TMWTGG packaging and presentation also appealed to me even though I usually abhor opaque bottles. Finally, the price for TMWTGG on ebay, at the time, was less than $35, so it was more cost-effective than Gilty.

I will also admit that I was a little annoyed with Zoya. Don’t get me wrong, I love Zoya but I’m going to hate on them for a minute. Gilty was released around the same time that they released a couple of other limited edition sets of polish. This was incredibly distressing to me as a person who has a perpetually empty bank account. If something expensive is limited edition and I only have a couple of days to buy it, depending on what time of the month it is, the sad reality may be that I just can’t justify the purchase. Gilty and the Peter Som 2013 trio fell victim to this problem. I wanted these sooooo bad but I just couldn’t splurge during the tiny window of time that these were available. Food > Nail polish, right? Zoya’s twitter account taunted me daily: ”Get these while supplies last, once it’s gone - it’s gone!” It made me question my existence a little - my inner monologue: “Why did I go to law school?” “Why did I take out 9 katrillion school loans?” “Why have I made so, so many poor financial choices that have culminated in this paycheck-to-paycheck life style?” “I love my job but this sucks, do I need to give up something I love to find something that pays more?” When those sets went out of stock, I almost felt alleviated. And I quickly came to terms with the fact that I wouldn’t be able to own them since I wasn’t going to pay exorbitant ebay prices.

Weeks later, after all that inner turmoil, Gilty was restocked and the polishes I wanted from the Peter Som trio were released in Zoya’s Spring 2013 collection. I still passed on Gilty because, by then, I had already budgeted for, and purchased, OPI MWTTGG. I wasn’t upset about the Peter Som polishes since I begged Zoya on twitter to re-release those colors and I appreciated the renewed opportunity to get them. But, still, it felt a bit like a slap in the face. One aspect of Zoya as a brand that I love is that they don’t generally make things limited edition and rarely discontinue colors. When they do discontinue shades, it’s usually after the polish has been available for a while. I hope that this situation does not represent a new trend for the company. I also hope that Zoya, before employing the “OMG!!! IT’S LIMITED EDITION!!!” marketing ploy, takes some time to consider the effect that that tactic might have on loyal costumers. Will people be so quick to frenzy over something that is “limited edition” if they know that in the past ”limited edition” actually meant ”limited edition (until we re-release or restock in a couple of weeks)”? On the other hand, I appreciate that I would have been able to acquire these eventually. So, even though I’m complaining, I suppose this weird ‘limited edition but not really’ thing is better than a truly limited edition color that can only be purchased on the nail polish gray market after the initial retail period is over.

SOPI It's Real vs OPI TMWTGG swatch

*whew* Okay, I’ll stop belly-aching now and get to the actual review. Both swatches are over black. Sephora by OPI It’s Real consists of very small irregularly sized gold flakes suspended in clear polish. I picked this one up at Sephora on clearance for $8, reduced from around $30. I had been eyeballing it after I saw it on twitter used over Sephora by OPI XOX Betsey. I passed originally because of the price tag but did a little happy dance when I was able to pick it up at such a reasonable price. This swatch is one coat. OPI The Man with the Golden Gun consists of larger irregularly sized gold flakes suspended in clear polish. This is two coats. It’s Real had an easier application, surely due to the smaller gold flakes. TMWTGG didn’t disburse evenly so I had to dab to get an even placement of flakies. I picked TMWTGG up on ebay for a reasonable price – I can’t remember now but I want to say it was around $20. These are different enough that owning both is justifiable. I think I like SOPI It’s Real a little better just because it’s more subtle – but I do love the Rorschach test-like  look of TMWTGG. Can you spot the continent of Africa on my nail? Haha.

Did you pick up or skip the gold flake trend? If you indulged, which one did you get?

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Rescue Beauty Lounge Bring It Back 2012

Saturday, January 5th, 2013

Brief aside, I’m really disappointed with how these photos turned out. I’ve had such a hard time with proper moisturizing lately. My Lemony Flutter/Solar Oil combo just isn’t hacking it and you can really tell in these photos – sad little dry nubbins. The old girls just aren’t what they used to be. *sobs* Rest assured though, I’m on the hunt for a new moisture regimen and I’ll keep you posted on what I find.

Rescue Beauty Lounge Aqua Lily

Rescue Beauty Lounge Aqua Lily is turquoise with very subtle fuchsia shimmer. The shimmer isn’t really visible in most lights, it’s just a gleam that gives the turquoise some depth. Good application, this mani was 3 coats. As expected with shades like this, beware, it’s a slight skin stainer. Aqua Lily was by far the most popular from this set of re-releases. I believe that after RBL launched BIB4, Aqua Lily sold out almost immediately and it’s still sold out now. Hopefully, more stock will be available soon. I’ll try to find out the status and let you know.

Rescue Beauty Lounge Recycle

Rescue Beauty Lounge Recycle – oh beloved, Recycle. This color is easily in my Top 20. It’s the perfect vibrant medium green – not too dark, not too light. Great application – perfect at 2 coats, but in this photo I did 3.  Years ago, this color was truly unique. There really was nothing else quite like it. Now, with the wider availability of greens, I’m sure there are close dupes out there. But this color still holds a really special place in my heart. Although I’ve written about this color before (you can see the original post here), I took the prospect of writing this post as an opportunity to pull this one out from my tried drawer and update the photo. So… so… gorgeous.

Rescue Beauty Lounge Insouciant

Rescue Beauty Lounge Insouciant is a light grapple with very subtle, nearly invisible blue shimmer. Like Aqua Lily, the shimmer mostly adds depth. Application was perfect. I wore this color after wearing two PITAs in a row and it reminded me of how wonderful it is when a polish glides on smoothly. I was pleasantly surprised by this color, it’s a purple that was actually flattering to my skin-tone, a real rarity. And I think it qualifies as “work apropos with an edge.” Chic and sophisticated come to mind.

Rescue Beauty Lounge Piu Mosso

Rescue Beauty Lounge Piu Mosso. Mmm… how to describe… It’s so mysterious. Inky eggplant? Is it blue or is it purple? Most bloggers say it’s blue but Piu Mosso really leaned purple to my eye, it’s a tough call. And the shimmer? Subtle copper and green microshimmer?  It has a slight duochrome quality to it, in some angles it’s visibly copper and in others green. Definitely a good base for a shifting top coat. The truth is that the photos online just don’t do this shade any justice. This is what Clarins 230 would look like after going to college, getting in with the bad crowd, dying her hair black and reading a lot of Sylvia Plath and Anne Sexton. It totally speaks to the angsty teenager inside me. I *l*o*v*e* it.

Rescue Beauty Lounge Piu Mosso Bottle Shot

*Cat calls* Looook at that shimmah. On the nail, it isn’t exactly invisible, but it’s not as prominent as it is in the bottle. The shimmer reminds me of black ball point pen ink after it has exploded all over everything. I did notice, after a few days of wear, the color seemed to darken. The shimmer seemed to fade and virtually disappeared from the surface of my nail.

rescue-beauty-lounge-opaque-nude-edited

Rescue Beauty Lounge Opaque Nude – the name is pretty self-descriptive. I previously reviewed this here. Here’s an excerpt: “My swatch is darker due to lighting and my skin tone which brings out the ‘nudeness’ of this color. In my opinion, Opaque Nude is border-line business appropriate, perfectly okay for a less conservative office. I say this only because it might be too obvious. I feel like business appropriate colors have to be subtle, pretty but not necessarily noticeable and for most people this color will be very noticeable.” It’s so funny to read my older reviews. My opinion about what qualifies as business appropriate has changed a lot. I’ll have to pull this one out and see if I still feel like it’s too “noticeable” after a few months of wearing some markedly non-office appropriate colors to work.

RescueBeautyLounge-StarfishPatrick-edited

Rescue Beauty Lounge Starfish Patrick. This is another shade that I previously reviewed: “Described as “wispy peach coral”, it’s definitely the most accessible of the [Sponge Bob Collection shades]. Bikini Bottom is my personal favorite, but my NOTD right now is Starfish Patrick, primarily because it’s subtle enough for work.” You can see the whole post here. I apologize for recycling photos – especially these since they’re so tiny in comparison to my new photo style. I do plan to eventually rephotograph colors as I re-wear them.

Did you pick up any of the BIBs? Any colors you wish RBL would re-release?

_______

Disclaimer: All shades were sent for review by Rescue Beauty Lounge, expect Recycle which I purchased myself. I can’t remember how I got Opaque Nude – it’s possible it was also sent to me for review.

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