Archive for the ‘Ghetto Fabulous’ Category

You Guys Were Right, Nubar Purple Rain Glitter is Amazing

Wednesday, August 20th, 2008

After my Essie Starry Starry Night post many of you suggested in the comments section that I should try out Nubar Purple Rain Glitter since it’s the purple more blingy cousin of SSN. Purple Rain Glitter, a recent acquisition along with several other unique Nubars, was freshly sitting in my “untried box”. These are the last few days that I’ll be able to wear blingy nail polish for a very long time so I decided to give it a whirl. Man. I. Love. It.

My love for Purple Rain Glitter is no shocker. Ever since seeing Nubar on the lovely girls on MUA and most recently featured on Sminkan, One Inch Nails, and Scrangie, I have been harboring crazy jump off the cliff lemmings for their polish. Scrangie’s blog is the origin of my specific lemming for Purple Rain Glitter. It’s a deep purple jelly with holographic glitter. Enough said.

The color is more violet-purple in real life than in my image, as usual. Purple Rain Glitter reminded me of the ink from an exploded blue bic pen. It’s extremely unique, I don’t own anything else even remotely similar to it. I’m really glad you guys coaxed me into trying it, or else who knows how long this beauty would have gone untried since I seem to habitually neglect awesome polish.

With all that said, this manicure was my first time using a Nubar polish. I’m very pleased with the results. I used 1 coat of Nubar Foundation Base Coat, 3 coats of Nubar Purple Rain Glitter, and 1 coat of Seche Vite. I got pretty good wear even though I did get some tip pull. My bottle of Seche is too blame, it’s reaching the dump out stage of thickness that causes tip pull. I was very pleased with the application, which is surprising because Nubar is Big 3 free. They bill themselves as ‘the healthy alternative for beautiful nails.’

I could not possibly care less about buying nail polish that is free of toxins. I like my toxins just fine, thank you very much, but I know some people really do care. Nubar is a good company to look into if you want to exclusively buy Big 3 Free. The one thing that really sold me, personally, on Nubar is that their collection has an excellent range of unique colors. We’re talking glitters, duochromes, and mutlichromes – you guys know how I feel about those. Their site is a little difficult to navigate but if you poke around you’ll see what I’m talking about.

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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.

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

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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.

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

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Blinged Out Adorée Swatches

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

I’ve decided to adopt Adorée as my pet brand. Adorée is fairly unheard of, but the line is high quality and inexpensive – not to mention unique. Sadly, they don’t have seasonal lines, but that means no ‘limited editions’ and no discontinued colors. Adoree also has a reputation for listening to their buyers. Hopefully, they’ll listen to me and release a dark creme jelly green. I can hope, can’t I?

As my new pet brand, I’m going to be showcasing a lot of Adorée swatches. Let me know if there are any particular Adorée colors you guys want to see. I’ll try my hardest to get them up for you.

For now, I’ve decided to counteract some of my recent nail polish conservativeness with a round of blinged out glitter swatches:

Adorée Riding Hood is my second favorite of the Adorée colors I own so far, the first being Wild Inkberry. This color reminds me of some of the Nfu Ohs I’ve seen, very unique. Riding Hood is composed of multi-sized duochrome-ish glitter suspended in transparent jelly coral polish. It flashes gold and green. This swatch is four coats but I really feel that this polish was put on earth to be layered. It’s gorgeous over black.

Adorée Oriental Coral is actually orange, not coral at all. It’s exactly the same as Riding Hood (multi-sized duo-chrome glitter suspended in transparent jelly colored polish) but there is more pigmentation in the polish. Due to the higher pigmentation, Oriental Coral can be worn alone or layered. This swatch is only 2 coats. Oriental Coral also seems to have less of the duo-chrome quality that Riding Hood displays but it’s still very bling.

Adorée Ice Mist is a traditional glitter polish… for the most part. What makes it really unique is that it is slightly more dense than regular multi-chrome iridescent glitter polishes – so you get some extra bling. This is 4 coats.

Adorée Hamilton Blue reminds me fondly of the 6th grade. The glitter is multi-colored (black, blue, red, green, silver), back then, I used similar glitter to help portray the universe in science class. Using 4 coats you end up with a color somewhat reminiscent OPI My Private Jet minus the holo. Using 1 or 2 coats you get slightly more sparse bling. I think it can be successfully worn either way.

Finally, Adorée Evening Blue. Beautiful. This is 4 coats. You can’t tell in this picture but Evening Blue is actually made up of both blue (rather, turquoise) and green glitter. The green is subtle so the result is depth of color within the blue. At first glance, Evening Blue looks dupish to Zoya Kotori but Evening Blue does not have a black base and the glitter is toned differently.

Here’s all of them over black:

Since Riding Hood and Oriental Coral look nearly the same over black, I used two coats on the index nail and one coat on the middle nail to show the contrast in density between using different coat amounts. All the other swatches are one coat. (My thumb is making a rare appearance here.)

Again, Adorée is sold online at Esther’s Nail Center.

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Disclosure: These polishes were sent to me for review by Esther’s Nail Center (I selected the colors I wanted to try).

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Alternatives to Chanel Gold Fiction

Tuesday, July 1st, 2008

So I think it’s pretty obvious to everyone that the new big thing in nail polish is going to be the resurgence of metallics, golds, and silvers. For those of us who are prudent spenders and didn’t miss the trend the first time around, it might just mean digging a little deeper into our stashes. For the rest of us addicts, it probably means a lot of splurging next season. At least I know my own low-buy/no-buy tanked hardcore when I had a major lapse in judgment that resulted in the purchase Chanel Kaleidoscope (swatches soon to come). I rarely buy big ticket polishes. In fact, I only buy expensive polishes if the color is really really really really I-can’t-get-it-any-where-else-on-earth unique. To me, Chanel Kaleidoscope was unique enough to be worth 20 bucks.

Chanel Gold Fiction, however, not so much. Seriously – it’s just gold nail polish. Every single brand of nail polish on earth carries several gold polishes. Of course, I’m saying this without having seen it on my own nails, but based on the pictures I’ve seen and the limited flirting I did with it at the Chanel counter, I fail to see the justification for the exorbitant 30 bone price tag. I feel like Chanel is probably just testing the waters for the marketability of merchandise with artificially inflated prices. After all, Chanel is already notorious for creating artificial demand by making just about all their polishes limited edition.

In any case, I’m definitely not telling anyone not to buy it. Sometimes when you really want a polish, you just need to buckle and get it because there is danger in trying to find duplicates of expensive colors. It’s possible that ultimately you might end up spending more money trying to find the perfect cheap dupe than you would have spent had you just purchased the expensive polish you wanted to begin with. It’s a double edged sword, ladies, so take my advice with a grain of salt.

*But* in order to humor myself, here is my attempt to stick it to the man: my favorite golds from OPI’s Christmas past. These probably aren’t the best alternatives because both of these are discontinued but it is still possible to pick these up for reasonable prices, definitely a lot more reasonable than thirty dollars.

OPI I Get a Kick Out of Gold is just stunning, period. It has a foil-like quality to it with no visible brush strokes. I’d say it’s a bit more muted than a true gold. This swatch is 2 coats. If you can’t find this polish, try Lippmann Nefertiti.

This swatch is also 2 coats. I don’t have a side by side comparison but OPI Symphony in Gold looks pretty darn close to Chanel Gold Fiction, definitely 20 dollar price tag difference close. This is more of a yellow gold than a true gold but the brush strokes are nearly invisible. It’s also pretty darn stunning.

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Battle of the Bling: Silver Holographic Top Coats

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2008

Here are the Contenders.

My initial thought was the Orly is just a glitter top coat that is slightly more reflective than normal glitter. INM is pretty much the same as the Orly with smaller glitter and more density. INM (both the silver and gold versions) is the only brand of glitter top coat I own that completely settles at the bottom. The bottle has a sticker on it that says, “shake it up” which, of course, is blasphemous – one should never shake a bottle of nail polish. To get all the glitter to evenly disperse throughout the bottle using the correct method (i.e. rolling the bottle inbetween your fingers) is incredibly time consuming and irritating. Finally, the fan favorite, Wireless, from the OMG collection, is the densest of all with the finest glitter. Let’s Do it in 3-D, from the Kaleidoscope Collection, is not a topcoat, it’s only here for comparison because it looked so much like Wireless to me that I initially mistook one for the other when I was taking these pictures. Wireless is probably just a more diluted version of Let’s Do it in 3-D.

This is 2 coats OPI – Black Onyx and 1 Coat for each Top Coat.

-Now for the real bling-

Clearly, Let’s Do it in 3-D brings the most *bling*. However, it’s not actually a top coat – it can’t win this contest. China Glaze – Wireless Top Coat is my pick. Owning both Wireless and INM is justifiable. They aren’t duplicates and the effect is clearly different. INM is basically a really nice (although run of the mill) glitter top coat while Wireless is more unique, I’m hesitant to call it glitter top coat at all. There is nothing really wrong with Orly, but if you own INM – no point in picking up a version with bigger and sparser glitter (unless you’re looking for something like that.)

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