Archive for the ‘Vampies’ Category

Essie Winter 2008 Collection Swatches

Sunday, October 12th, 2008

I feel silly covering winter collections already when, in Florida, we’re still having 90 degree days. Honestly, the winter collections sort of crept up on me. In actuality, I haven’t even finished covering all the fall collections yet. In any case, here are swatches of the Essie Winter 2008 collection.  It’s a solid collection with several purchase worthy colors, but there’s nothing ultra extraordinary or ground breaking. Most of these colors dried fairly matte, and as always, my swatches don’t include a top coat. No major application issues with this collection but I had to use 3 coats with all of them in order to get full coverage.

Essie It’s Genius is a light tyrian purple with complex green to gold shimmer. Essie calls it a ‘violet quartz shimmer’. This color applies pretty sheer, so I used 3 coats for this swatch. I know I will love this one madly when I get over my purple discrimination phase. This image was taken with flash.

Essie Shift Power is a gold frost. It’s not what I would consider a true gold, to me it looks like there is a slight coppery tinge to it. Like It’s Genius, Shift Power also applied pretty sheer so I used 3 coats for this swatch. The name of this color is a little perplexing to me… is it supposed to evoke car imagery? or elicit the idea of a powerful business woman? I don’t get it. I don’t have Chanel Gold Fiction so I wonder how close these two are to one another? (Paging Scrangie.)

Essie Damsel in a Dress is a deep reddish purple (apparently the name for a reddish purple is currant – you learn something new everyday). Vampy lovers will dig this color. I probably could have gotten away with 2 coats on this one, but I used 3. This image was taken with flash.

Essie Sexy Divide is a dark purple with bright violet shimmer. We’ve had several similar colors released this season, all of which haven’t made any significant impression on me – Sexy Divide is different. It’s less flat than the others, definitely brighter. The shimmer gives this shade depth. My image doesn’t do it justice, it was taken with flash.

Essie Rock Star Skinny is a vampy brownish red with very subtle shimmer. I used 3 coats but I probably could have used two and still achieved the same depth of color. A lot of girls are not a fan of the name, but I don’t find it offensive.

Essie Bold and Beautiful is a gorgeous vampy dark red crème with a jelly-like quality. This, too, was a three coater.

This collection hasn’t hit the e-tailers yet but it’s been spotted in brick & mortars all over the U.S.

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

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Zoya Casey: The Most Gorgeous Vampy *EVER*

Sunday, October 5th, 2008

Holy &*%^. Zoya Casey is by the far the prettiest vampy I’ve ever seen, ever. It’s a deep deep deep deep jelly-like ultra glossy plum with a red base. The color is an ‘almost black’ which normally would irritate me to no end but there is just something alluring about this color, dramatic and intense. My ultimate test for nail polish is whether a color makes me continuously stare down at my nails. Casey definitely caused some major mani rubbernecking. Despite my nail polish ADD, I didn’t want to remove Casey. This is one for the top 20 list for sure. For this manicure, I used Zoya Anchor for the base, 3 coasts of Casey, and Seche Vite as the top coat.

Casey is a rediscovered color. I’ve had it in my stash forever. The downside to having so much nail polish is that good colors tend to get lost in the mess. So I have a new system. I have all my untried polishes listed in an excel spreadsheet. Then I use this website (http://random.org/integers/) to randomly select a number. I wear whatever color corresponds to the randomly selected number – Casey was the first manicure I selected in that fashion.

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Fall Blitzkrieg: Lippmann Collection Holiday 2008 Swatches

Monday, September 22nd, 2008

I just want to remind everyone that the last day to enter The First Ever Polish Addict Giveaway for the Color Club Musique Collection is today. The winner will be selected tomorrow. : )

With that said, I’m pretty smitten with the new Lippmann Collection Holiday releases. What I particular like about this collection is that there is one color that is absolutely perfect for every major category in nail polish preference. There is a color for dainty lovers, the shimmer reds/pinks lovers, the vampy lovers, and the bling lovers. (Guess where I belong?)

Lippmann Collection Icing on the Cake is the light pink version of Lippmann Collection Rhapsody in White. Unfortunately, it has the same brush stroke issues but it is very pretty and delicate. I’ve come to the conclusion that nothing can be done about the brush stroke issues inherent to frosties. *Sigh*. This swatch is 3 coats.

Lippmann Collection Holiday is a red jelly with red and fuchsia microglitter. The shimmeriness is much more obvious in person than in my image above. It adds depth and glow to the bright base red. Holida is very color-appropriate moniker. Of the four releases in this collection, Holiday is definitely the most traditional Holiday-type color. I foresee this one being pretty popular during the Winter. My swatch is 4 coats because I’m not a fan of VPL. However, the application is *perfect* so if you don’t hate VPL, this color is definitely wearable at 2 coats.

Lippmann Collection Maneater. I’m the idiot that will buy a color just because I like the name. So I really LOVE it when an awesome color meets a badass name. A deep dark vampy brown called Maneater? Ummm…. I’m all over that one. Maneater has a jelly quality too it but it’s such a rich brown that it’s almost black on the nail – still gorgeous though. This swatch is 3 coats.

Lippmann Collection Superstar is hands down my FAVORITE from this collection. Copper Glitter in jelly brown base, it’s almost like Deborah Lippmann peeked into my dreams. Superstar has fairly chunky glitter in it but I got pretty good smoothness with 2 coats of Seche Vite. This swatch is two coats.

Scrangie has swatches of this collection on her site too. Lippmann Collection is available online or at some Bath & Body Work locations.

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

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Fall Blitzkrieg: OPI La Collection De France

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2008

I’m a little late to the party (check out Scrangie’s swatches) but, of course, I have to give you guys my take on one of the biggest collections to hit us this Fall. I wasn’t all that excited for OPI France when I initially saw the promotional images. OPI has a proclivity for releasing several reds and ‘almost blacks’ in just about every collection and, frankly, it gets old. The promos of France made it seem like more of the same. Consequently, I wasn’t expecting to like these. I was pleasantly surprised to find that this collection is actually pretty cool.

Sure, a few of the colors were fairly run of the mill OPI type stuff. I’m not doing back flips for OPI Louvre me Louvre Me Not (ducks to avoid thrown stones, tomatoes, assorted rotting vegetables), but there are several solid gorgeous, unique colors in this collection. There have been a few complaints about colors in the France collection being thick and difficult to apply but I didn’t have any real trouble with them.

As a side note, I really feel like OPI did a good job of designing colors that are representative of French culture and fashion. I say that because I felt like they could have done more with the Indian collection, it’s good to see that they were spot on with France.

*Dies* OPI You Don’t Know Jacques is my absolute favorite color from this collection. Seriously, every once a while an amazing color like this comes out and renews my passion for nail polish. The color is tough to describe, grayish, brownish, dirty, mushroomy? This is my current NOTD, 2 coats, love it. I’ve said it a million times and I’ll say it again, love these grayed out mushroomy colors. I just can’t get enough.

OPI Yes… I Can-Can! is a shimmery eggplant type color. The base color seems similar to OPI Lincoln Park After Dark. The shimmer seems multi-colored, I see flashes of green, silver, and violet in the bottle. On the nail, it’s silvery and serves to give Yes… I Can-Can! depth. This swatch is 3 coats but with careful application good coverage is possible at 2 coats.

OPI Tickle My France-y is my second favorite color from this collection. It’s a grayed out subtle nude pink – it is chic and sophisticated perfection. Earlier last week, when I went back into the professional nail color purgatory, Tickle My France-y was the first color I chose for the big switch. This color was so beautiful, so flattering that I didn’t even care about being forced to wear professional colors. This mani was 3 coats.

OPI Parlez-vous OPI?, another stand out color, is a grayed-out (or smokey as OPI puts it) plum. The application was slightly troublesome, my bottle was chalky and thick but it’s workable. This is 2 coats.

OPI Louvre Me Lourve Me Not is my least favorite color from this collection. Sorry guys, I know I’m completely alone, everyone else loves this one. There’s nothing inherently wrong with this color but I have a predisposition to disliking shimmers and I’ve just had my fill of shimmery mid-range purples this fall. You can’t really see it in my image but Louvre Me Lourve Me Not has blurple and violet shimmer. This swatch is 3 coats.

OPI I’m Fondue of You is a reddish light chocolaty brown with reddish brown shimmer. I don’t love this one. It’s pretty but not special. This swatch is 2 coats, I think the color would look better with 3.

OPI Eiffel for this Color is an ‘almost black’. OPI says it’s wine but it looks dark purple with violet shimmer to me. It’s similar to Yes… I Can-Can! but they’re different enough to warrant owning both if one is so inclined to do so. Normally, I would say boo to an almost black but I, surprisingly, like this color. This swatch is 2 coats.

Scrangie called OPI Crepes Suzi-ette a ‘mom’ color… it is – but – it’s hot. I think this one ventures into the realm of work appropriate. I’m actually surprised that I like this color too. I probably wouldn’t have batted an eye at this creamy reddish caramel in a store, but it’s actually very flattering on the nail. I would even dare say that it’s unique. This swatch is 2 coats.

There will always be reds in an OPI collection, shockingly there were only two in the France Collection. One of which, OPI Bastille My Heart, is a deep burgandy with violet shimmer throughout. Pretty, but standard.

OPI Baguette Me Not, a creamy salmon, is another shocker. Totally didn’t expect to like this ‘mom’ (haha) color but I love it. Very chic, very work appropriate. This swatch is 2 coats.

OPI A Oui Bit of Red, the other red in the France Collection, is a mid-range bright red. I love reds and I would have loved this one too, but for the shimmer. The saving grace is that the fuschia shimmer is very subtle, hardly noticeable. This swatch is 2 coats.

Finally, OPI We’ll Always Have Paris. Love. It. This is the color that I wanted the annoyingly almost black OPI Lincoln Park After Dark to be. I love LPAD but I always wanted it to be more noticeably purple and vampy. OPI granted my wish with We’ll Always Have Paris. Strangely, OPI says this color is dark coffee… definitely looks dark reddish purple to me.

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

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Fall Blitzkrieg: Zoya Vibe Collection Swatches

Sunday, August 17th, 2008

As I said in the previous post, I like simple red or vampy cremes – they’re classy, sophisticated, and almost always appropriate for any occasion. No, they aren’t unique, and yes, we’ve seen these colors before but as far as I’m concerned polish companies can continue to make as many vampies as they want with no criticism from me. I suppose the problem is most people, Scrangie for example, don’t feel the same way, which is why Zoya Vibe hasn’t gotten as much love as its shimmery sister collection Pulse. I prefer Vibe over Pulse a million times over, but I think might just be the only person on earth that feels that way. I didn’t have any application issues with Vibe, except where noted. Almost all these colors applied perfectly with 2 coats.

Zoya Sam and Zoya Nina look deceptively similar but that’s due to my inadequacy as a photographer. In person, they are noticeably different with Sam being more berry toned and Nina being very visibly brown. This swatch is 3 coats. Zoya Sam gave me some cuticle drag, so a third coat was necessary to even the application out. I think good coverage with 2 coats is possible, I was just being impatient with my swatches. I think Sam will always be slightly darker on the nail than the bottle color because it darkens as it dries.

If you read my blog often, you’ll know that brown is one of my white whales. Even though I passionately love all browns, I have a tough time finding browns that flatter my skin tone. I’m finding that darker browns like Nina and Essie Chocolate Kisses suit my skin tone pretty well. As stated above, Zoya Nina is visibly brown despite it’s darkness in my image. This is two coats – I didn’t have any issues with the application.

Zoya Riley is a magenta based deep vampy red. This is 2 coats.

The difference between Dakota and Riley, for those who are wondering, is that Dakota doesn’t have the magenta undertones. They look very similar in the bottle but they actually are different colors. This swatch is two coats.

I don’t know what it is with this collection but there are 3 pairs of colors that look similar to each other in the bottle but not on the nail. Two pairs I’ve already addressed, the last pair is Zoya Asia and Alix. They look pretty similar in the bottle, but Asia is brighter. Both are true reds. This swatch is 2 coats.

And finally, Zoya Alix, I did have some issues with this one. I had a wonky brush, which was shocking because I love Zoya brushes. I’ve never had a wonky Zoya before. Even when I passionately hated Zoya, I was still a fan of their brushes which are the perfect shape and size for my nails. The brush I got in Alix had a crooked bristle, ultimately it wasn’t a big deal. The wonkiness was easily fixed by just trimming the rogue bristle. The other issue was that Zoya Alix was a little tougher to apply than the other colors in this collection. I didn’t get full coverage at 2 coats and I had a significant amount of cuticle drag. However, a third coat fixed everything to my satisfaction.

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

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Lippmann Collection Fall 2008 Swatches

Monday, August 4th, 2008

Sorry about that hiatus, I started a new soul-destroying job and I’ve had zero free time and zero sunlight with which to take swatch images. I’m going to invest in a light box so that I don’t have to be so sun dependent, until then, you guys will have to make due with sub-par indoor lighting.

Ok no more excuses for the moment, let’s get back to the Fall Blitzkrieg. That’s what I’ve decided to dub the insanity that is about to ensue when all the fall colors hit the shelves. It’s really like all the nail polish companies got together and conspired to empty out some bank accounts.

Here’s Lippmann Collection’s 4 new shades for fall:

Lippmann Collection Rhapsody in White is a frosty white with a tinge of silver. This is two coats in sunlight, (the only sunlight picture I was able to get today.) It’s a great color but I got a lot of noticeable brush strokes. I am not a fan of brush strokes.

Lippmann Stop and Stare is a magenta based bright jelly creme red. Gorgeous. This is 3 coats, but it’s wearable at 2 coats if you don’t mind VPL. This one had great application, not a streak in sight, smooth and perfect. I’m tempted to say that Lippmann Stop and Stare is dupish to Essie Jelly Apple, but I’m hesitant because JA is more a true red, and SaS has a magenta tone to it. I’ll do comparison swatches soon.

To be honest, I was a little surprised to see a true black in Lippmann’s fall collection. Not to hate on Lippmann, but black is black is… black. However, black is supposed to be making a come back this fall so I guess it makes sense. This is a normal, glossy, unadulterated true black creme. The application was excellent, it’s opaque in coat, but I preferred it with two. Now that I think about it, I wonder if every black really is created equal. I’ve never actually done side by side comparisons of my black cremes. My HG go-to black for layering is Milani Black Magic. It’s cheap and gets the job done so I’ve never really questioned the difference between tones, application, and wear in blacks. *light bulb goes on for article*

Lippmann Collection Pump Up the Jam is definitely the stand out color from the new Lippmann fall shades. I’m really loving these shimmery vampies. Judging by the enthusiasm for them on the nail board, I expect that vampy shimmers are going to be big this Fall. Lippmann describes this color as “Boysenberry Bijoux”. Not really sure what that means, but man, I love this color. It’s aubergine shimmer with a blackish base. This image does not do this polish justice, this one is a definite ‘must have’. I’ll definitely revisit this color for you guys when the sun comes back out, darn Florida weather.

Special thanks to Lippmann.

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