Archive for the ‘Comparison Swatches’ Category

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?

PinterestEmailShare

China Glaze Whimsical Comparisons

Thursday, August 30th, 2012

When I originally posted about China Glaze Whimsical, I promised to dig around looking for dupes. I went stash diving and, sadly, I have nothing good to report. Whimsical seems to be in a league of its own as far as my stash goes. There were two possible candidates judging from bottle color alone, but the ultimate effect on the nail was not similar at all.

The base color of OPI Significant Other Color, which is pink-leaning-towards-lilac, seemed similar to Whimsical’s base color. SOC is a sheer layering polish with a predominantly green duochrome shimmer. Estee Lauder Shimmering Pink, a frosty very light pink, was chosen because it exhibits a very beautiful ultra fine green and pink shimmer in bottle. I thought that type of shimmer might reproduce the ethereal quality of Whimsical on the nail, even though the base color was visibly dissimilar. Both these colors were untrieds so I wasn’t sure what they would look like in practice.

Clearly, not close at all. Shimmering Pink was very frosty, no me gusta. The shimmer wasn’t very apparent and the pink shimmer was more dominant than the green. This is 5 coats of color. I wasn’t too impressed with the swatch, but I’ll wait to do a full mani before I kick this one. Significant Other Color has a pinker base color – Whimsical is more mauve. This is 4 coats of SOC and 4 coats of Whimsical.

I took this shot with my nails slightly angled, catching more light to display the shimmer. Here the differences between the shimmer in Whimsical and the shimmer in SOC is more obvious. SOC displays a much stronger green cast and doesn’t build to the same level of opacity as Whimsical. Significant Other Color, at least in the bottle, is one of the most impressively beautiful polishes ever made, but the duochrome magic just doesn’t translate to the nail. That is, until you layer it over black, then the winning never stops. I do plan to wear it this way some day but if you need instant swatch gratification check out Love Varnish’s swatch of SOC over black. Pretty amazing, huh?

PinterestEmailShare

More Giveaway Fun: Color Club Frankenpolish Contest

Wednesday, September 24th, 2008

What is a frankenpolish?

Basically, you take two more polishes and combine them to create a new color. That’s just the beginning: girls use clear polish, make-up pigment, glitter, etc., to create new looks. The possibilities are pretty much endless.

So, how does this contest work?

(1) Create a frankenpolish using any Color Club polish or product. You can use other brands as long as you use at least one Color Club product as a component of your creation.

(2) Post a swatch of your polish, it’s name, your recipe for the color, and a little blurb about your creation in the comments section of this entry. Your entries will be judged by myself and 2 other mystery nail polish bloggers. Judging will be based on creativity of color and design and, of course, the judges’ personal tastes.

(3) You will win extra points if you take a picture of your best mad scientist pose, holding up your franken bottle, screaming “it’s ALIVE! ALIIIIIIIIVE!”

(4) The last day to submit an entry will be October 15th.

Prizes?

Yup! The winner will receive the entire Color Club Glitter Vixen Collection. 1 runner up will receive the Color Club Best of the Best mini set (contains Honey Bee, Just Chill, Special Effects, and Killer Curves). I’ll have swatches of these colors up before the contest is over!

Franken away! *evil cackle*

Side note: This is my 100th post! Wooo.

_____________

Disclosure: Prize provided courtesy of Color Club.

PinterestEmailShare

Lippmann Pump Up the Jam vs. OPI Lincoln Park At Midnight

Tuesday, August 12th, 2008

First, I thought I would make it easier for everyone and just have one page with links to all the fall collections that I’ve posted so far. So I’ve added a page, Swatches of the Fall 2008 Collections, for ease of access to these swatches. Right now I only have my own posts linked but I want to link to other blogs that have covered fall collections as well. If you have collections you want featured on that page, let me know and I’ll add your links.

I recently posted the Lippmann Fall Collection, in the post I promised you guys a sunlight image of Pump Up the Jam. Some of you requested a comparison of Lippmann Pump Up the Jam and OPI Lincoln Park After Midnight, so here’s the whole shebang:

I was actually surprised to find that in the sunlight Lippmann Pump Up the Jam’s shimmer leans more toward reddish violet – it’s definitely a lot dark indoors. I’m not sure why I’m surprised by that, every shimmer ever works exactly the same way. “Whoa, Bam” outdoors, “Oh that’s nice” indoors.

I might be alone here but I think that Lippmann Pump Up the Jam looks *nothing* like OPI Lincoln Park At Midnight. PUtJ has a darker base color, almost black, unlike LPAM, which has a visibly purple base color. Even the shimmer is different as you can see above, as I said before, PUtJ has an aubergine shimmer to it. The only thing similar about them is that they are both dark colors that incorporate shimmery purple. In my opinion, both are definitely different enough to justify owning both, especially if shimmery purplish vampies are your thing.

_____________

Disclosure: Pump Up the Jam was sent to me for review by the Lippman Collection.

PinterestEmailShare

Bling Incognito: Misa Sugar Sugar Collection Swatches

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008

Misa contacted me after I posted a negative review of Misa Indescribable. They said that they would do their best to rework the formula to create better, less streaky application. I was really impressed that they reached out to me as a dissatisfied customer. Indescribable was the first Misa polish I tried, since then I’ve had much better results with their polish but it’s still pretty great that they were concerned. Kudos to Misa for the excellent customer service.

Sorry guys this post isn’t for the new collection. I know, how horrible of a tease am I? I’ll have swatches of Poisoned Passion up this weekend, until then, get your fix by checking out Scrangie’s and Masa’s swatches and comparisons.

Sugar Sugar is Misa’s previous Spring/Summer collection. It is composed of 3 base colors and 3 ‘toppings’. It’s my personal opinion that these polishes were meant to be worn mixed and matched, layered over each other. The name Sugar Sugar is very fitting, all the colors in this collection look powdery and sheer on the nail. But you’ll find, like I did, that this seemingly princess-y collection has a darker, cooler side. All these polishes applied exceptionally well, no application issues at all.

First, the base colors:

Misa Sugar Daddy is my favorite from this collection. Gorgeous. I’ve been loving whites lately and this one has very fine silvery microshimmer that sets it apart from the other whites in my stash. It’s opaque but still somewhat translucent at 3 coats. I feel that Misa Confection Section was meant to be the topping for Sugar Daddy.

Misa Lolli Jolly is a soft sheer pink with microshimmer. Lolli Jolly is dupish to OPI Princesses Rule and Sinful Glass Pink. It’s still very sheer even at 3 coats. Misa Candy Girl compliments Lolli Jolly.

Misa Honeybunch is the silvery white version of Lolli Jolly. This swatch is also 3 coats. In the image Honeybunch seems to fade from very opaque on my index finger to very sheer on my pinkie finger. That is the result of shading. Interestingly, Honeybunch looks more sheer in the shade and more opaque in full on sunlight. Finally, I think the teal in Misa Sweet Pleasure compliments the silver in Honeybunch.

Here are the three base colors side-by-side. They may look similar but each one has it’s own charm. I actually did try to capture images of all these polishes layered over each other. I just couldn’t get the subtle shimmer to show up accurately with my camera. Suffice it to say that the combinations are really pretty, especially using Candy Girl and Sweet Pleasures together over Lolli Jolly as a base.

Now for the ‘toppings’:

Misa Confection Section is a chunky multi-toned glitter polish. You can use this one over any polish in this collection (well really over any polish, period) but I think it’s especially suited to be layered over Sugar Daddy.

Misa Candy Girl is a pink jelly base with suspended blurple microshimmer. Ultra sheer, it’s gorgeous layered over Lolli Jolly. It’s my second favorite from this collection, you’ll see why below.

Misa Sweet Pleasure is teal toned microshimmer suspended in nude jelly polish. This is 3 coats in the sunlight. Even in the full on midday Sun this polish is very subtle and tame. It’s beautiful, I don’t say that very often about sheers.

Now for the really exciting stuff – the ‘toppings’ over black:

Sugar Sugar is rocking the major undercover bling.

Candy Girl is blue to purple duochrome! DUOCHROME! *dies* Confection Section becomes green toned over black, very ‘the truth is out there-ish’ so I think this will be my mani for the X-Files opening this weekend. Sweet Pleasures over black looks a bit like Zoya Kotori but more blinged out.

_____________

Disclosure: This collection was sent to me for review by Misa.

PinterestEmailShare

Alternatives to Chanel Kaleidoscope

Monday, July 21st, 2008

Like I said before, I usually don’t buy Chanel nail polish *but* Chanel Kaleidoscope was so beautiful and unique, I just had to have it. The minute I saw a swatch of it taken by MUA’s Mrs_Brightside, I called Nordstrom and put a bottle on hold. That was incredibly out of character for me but it was totally and completely worth it. Even though I can honestly say that I love Kaleidoscope, I want to show you guys some possible alternatives to it. With the economy the way that it is right now, a luxury item like a 20 dollar bottle of nail polish, is probably not the most prudent way to spend money. Of course, some colors are must-have, recession or not, but if you can settle from something less extravagant, why not do so? (I’m a hypocrite, I know.)

First, here she is (are bottles of nail polish female? hmm) in all her glory:

*Heavy Sigh* In the sunlight, Kaleidoscope shimmers with ultra bling. Indoors and in the shade, it’s more of a subtle mirrored greenish platinum color. It’s beautiful but I have no idea why it’s called Kaleidoscope, neither does Scrangie. If the other shade is Gold Fiction, why not call this one Platinum Drama.

Essie Steel-ing the Scene is the closest thing to Kaleidoscope in my stash. These are actually fairly close color siblings. The main difference is that Kaleidoscope has the greenish tone and a lot more shimmer. However, if you really want to follow this trend but don’t want to blow the cash, Essie Steel-ing the Scene is a great alternative.

Here is Kaleidoscope and Steel-ing the Scene side by side. Despite several attempts, I couldn’t get the image to show the differences between these colors. I blame the inferior camera. While these colors are very close they really don’t look as similar in real life as they look in the image. Steel-ing the Scene has a smoother finish, less bling, less shimmer and is less mirrored.

Adorée Rockport Gray doesn’t have a mirrored finish. It’s a pseudo-metallic light silverish gray with some mossy shimmer throughout. Rockport Gray is not a dupe but it’s a pretty good alternative, especially for people who don’t want to go full out metallic. This is my NOTD right now, it’s subtle enough that I was able to get away with it at work. The application and wear is excellent.

I first lemminged Milani Key Lime Shine when I saw it on FiveZero. The polish doesn’t show the brush strokes, the lines on the surface are actually my nail ridges. If I did this as an actual mani, which I will soon, I would use Camo as a base to eliminate that issue. Key Lime Shine is a highly mirrored metallic light lime green. This is the only one of the colors exhibited here that is available at drug stores, although it is rumored to be hard-to-find.

_____________

Disclosure: Adoree Rockport Gray was sent to me for review by Esther’s Nail Center.

PinterestEmailShare