Saturday, December 31, 2011

Orly - Rock Solid

I'm not very sure how to describe this polish - it's an odd one, for sure.  My best guess is a charcoal Mineral FX-like sparkle, with a bunch of holographic glitter pieces.

Basecoat:  Salon Sciences Fiberglass Network (1 coat)
Color:  Orly Rock Solid (3 coats)
Topcoat:  NYC Grand Central Station (1 coat)

See what I mean?  Anyway, application was really good - my brush tended to get a whole lot of polish on it, but as long as I was careful to wipe off any excess, it wasn't a problem.  Consistency was fine, and cleanup went a lot better than I expected it to.  I have a couple of bare spots but it's not really noticeable, either in photos or in real life.

I believe NYC Grand Central Station is really a clear quick-dry polish as opposed to a topcoat, but it's been getting rave reviews as a topcoat, so I decided to try it.  Dry time is very nice - not as fast as Seche but just fine, and it's reasonably shiny.  My manicure still has a little bit of texture to it, but I'm not blaming my topcoat for it - I used a not-smooth base coat, and this polish has a lot of glitter.  It's still an acceptable texture - not anything like the Nubar Sparkles - and although I think a Gelous topcoat sandwich would work here, I just don't been like it's necessary.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Orly - Au Champagne, China Glaze - Party Hearty

This combination came out very similar to my last year's Christmas manicure, but I don't care.  Last year I used China Glaze Frosty with Wet N Wild French White as underwear, but I like this combination better.

Basecoat:  Salon Sciences Instant Artificials (1 coat)
Color:  Orly Au Champagne (3 coats)
Topcoat:  China Glaze Party Hearty (1 coat)
Topcoat:  Northern Lights Silver Hologram (1 coat)

Au Champagne is a pretty, shimmery opaque white.  It's a little softer than a straight white.  It dries to a satin finish, which I thought was interesting, but I also think that's why it applied so nicely.  I had zero problems with it.

I might as well have skipped the holo topcoat altogether, because the sun has not been out - at all - until this morning, and these photos were taken yesterday with already four full days of wear (see tip wear if you embiggen).

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

China Glaze - Glittering Garland and Snow Globe

I actually forgot I had worn this until I was editing photos of the last mani I wore.  I love these two polishes, just maybe not together, and I didn't even wear this out of the house.

Basecoat:  Salon Sciences Instant Artificials (1 coat)
Color:  China Glaze Glittering Garland (3 coats)
Topcoat:  China Glaze Snow Globe (1 coat)
Topcoat:  David (1 coat)

See?  Super pretty, just not sure they go together.  I test swatched a few combinations and ultimately decided on this one for some reason - I should have gone with the gold Northern Lights topcoat instead.  Oh well.

I've seen photos of Glittering Garland that look very different from my bottle - mine just looks like a plain dark green with glass fleck.  It's very pretty but it's not the outright glitter I've seen photos of.  Application was pretty good, and I didn't have any problems with cleanup.

My bottle of Snow Globe is from the initial release with all the other specialty glitters.  As a result, it was super thick and I had to thin it a lot, but it was still pretty thick.  I have a little bit of tip shrinkage, too.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Missha - JBL01

Today I have a new-to-me brand to show you:  Missha.  This is a Korean brand.  I bought this color and one other from eBay.  JBL01 is a beautiful dark blue and green glass fleck.  I only have crappy inside photos - it is currently pouring down rain outside.

Basecoat:  Salon Sciences Instant Artificials (1 coat)
Color:  Missha JBL01 (2 coats!!)
Topcoat:  David (1 coat)

This is a GORGEOUS polish.  These photos don't even remotely do this polish justice.  It has both blue and green glass flecks in it, which makes it look almost like a duochrome in low light.  I only needed two coats for full opacity.  Cleanup was a real bitch, though, for a couple of reasons.

First, this is the bottle from the top down.  Yes, the whole cap is shaped like this.  It is a little awkward to hold at first, but there's a specific position that feels more comfortable to hold.  This alone wouldn't be a problem, if it weren't for the second issue:

This is the fattest brush I have ever used.  The Missha brush is the darker blue, the other one is a Sally Hansen Insta-Dri.  The Missha brush is wide, flat, and square.  At least with Insta-Dri brush the edges are curved, so you can learn to get along with it.  But because you can only really comfortably hold the Missha cap in one position, it's very hard to not get polish everywhere - which is exactly what I did.

I am not sure I have anything even close to this polish in my collection - I am glad I bought it!

I have one more Missha polish coming up, and one Skin Food polish.  I also bought all of the Guppy Sanding Fruit Extract polishes (one broke in transit) - I like them much more than I thought even though they smell terrible.  Those will also be coming up eventually.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Orly - Fowl Play

Yep, slacking again.  Anyway, today I have on Orly "Fowl Play".  Fowl Play is very similar to OPI Merry Midnight, but Fowl Play is a little bit darker.  I own both, but the comparison's been done a million times - I'm not going to repeat it now even though it's been months since everyone was wearing it :)

Basecoat:  Salon Sciences Instant Artificials (1 coat)
Color:  Orly Fowl Play (4 coats)
Topcoat:  David (1 coat)

Look at those rainbow shimmery flakes!  Too bad they aren't as magical on the nail as they are in the bottle. Still, this is really pretty and I think I like the base color of Fowl Play a bit more than Merry Midnight - it seems a little less muddy.

Application was pretty good - not very runny at all.  It was opaquer than I was expecting it to be based on everyone else's posts, but I still ended up needing four coats.  It didn't try totally smooth, but one coat of David topcoat fixed it right up.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Revlon - Facets of Fuchsia

Facets of Fuchsia is a black jelly with fuchsia glitter - both regular sized glitter and larger hex glitter.
I layered this over Wet N Wild's Black Creme.

Basecoat:  Salon Sciences Instant Artificials (1 coat)
Color:  Wet N Wild Black Creme (1 coat)
Color:  Facets of Fuchsia (2 coats)
Topcoat:  David (1 coat)

Sorry for the crap photos - the weather was awful and foggy the day I took these, so I had to resort to my desk light.

Facets applied very nicely - of course I had the super opaque Black Creme underneath, so it was pretty forgiving.  I didn't have much issue with glitter placement - I only had to push one big hex off the edge of my nail.  It wasn't thick or gloppy, either.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

OPI - Tease-y Does It

Here's a polish I've worn before, but I needed something sort of conservative.  I was originally planning to wear Pepe's Purple Passion, but I absolutely hated it once I started applying it.  So,  back to Tease-y Does It.

Basecoat:  Salon Sciences Instant Artificials (1 coat)
Color:  OPI Tease-y Does It (3 coats)
Topcoat:  David (1 coat)

Do not be fooled by that tiny bit of green flash in the last photo - that is so not visible on the nail, and not in the bottle either.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Zoya - Mitzi

Mitzi is a lime green matte.  I should have put this up for Halloween.  Embiggen IF YOU DARE!

Basecoat:  Zoya Ridge Filler (1 coat)
Color:  Zoya Mitzi (3 coats)

Yuck.  Draggy, lumpy, thick, just nasty.  It's got to be the lack of shimmer - the other mattes don't apply like this one.  Even the blue one from this collection (I forgot its name) applied nicely.

These photos actually look a little worse than real life - I don't think I realized the pinky was that bad until I was editing the photos.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Essie - School of Hard Rocks and Shine of the Times

Yeah, yeah, I'm slacking again.  The weather's been just lousy in Dallas this week - even these photos are under my desk lamp because there's just no good sun.

(Oops.  There's a China Glaze bottle top just outside of this crop that's in perfect focus, though.)
Basecoat:  Salon Sciences Instant Artificials (1 coat)
Color:  Essie School of Hard Rocks (3 coats)
Color:  Essie Shine of the Times (1 coat)
Topcoat:  David (1 coat)

First - due to the already-mentioned crappy weather, I applied this under a lamp, with much less ambient daylight as usual.  I really do think I could have stopped at two coats of School of Hard Rocks, but I just couldn't be sure enough without my usual (preferred) lighting conditions.  Anyway, this applied flawlessly - I sure do love Essie cremes.

Also, this is just ONE coat of Shine of the Times.  Usually with a flake topcoat like this I like to do at least two coats, but this SO did not need it.  I think the flakes are much denser than Nubar 2010 and Sally Hansen Hidden Treasure.  The downside, of course, is that this was so dense that it applied kind of like frosting - thick and goopy and not-spready.   I'm not sure I'd wear this exact combination again, but I love both of these polishes.

In other news, a new beauty supply store opened inside what used to be a Target near me.  (yes, it's HUGE!)  It doesn't have a whole lot of makeup (it's mostly hair care) but they do carry some brands I've never seen near me in person - a nice Kleancolor display (with some Chunky Holos!), Ruby Kisses, Ruby Kisses HD, NYX Girls polishes.  I picked up quite a few of these (though they're mostly neons) and hope to at least swatch some soon.