Archive for category Black

OPI Hello Kitty collection

OPI Hello Kitty

Ok. It’s 9:01pm and I try to end my screen time at 9, but I am determined to get a post up so I’m going to make this snappy! [Edit: I went to bed before this was finished…what’s a couple more hours?] I received the Hello Kitty collection from OPI last week and it’s quite good! I know absolutely NOTHING about Hello Kitty and it’s popularity (not really into cutesy stuff as a general rule) but almost all of the polishes in this collection have a great formula and the shades are on point for spring. I’m not a fan of the cheap white ‘Hello Kitty’ print labels they’ve stuck over the regular OPI bottle tops, but it’s not a deal breaker either.

I’ve gotten all fancy today and thrown in some quick comparisons for you guys as well as the swatches. Let’s dive in, shall we?

Let’s Be Friends! & Charmmy & Sugar

IMG_3543

Let’s Be Friends! is a pale lilac-pink. The first coat was patchy and I worried it would be a typical pastel cream, but by the second coat it evened out beautifully – with a little care you could get away with 2 coats (I used 3 as I slept on it before taking these photos, oops). In the end this is a lovely color with a glossy finish. I wore Charmmy & Sugar (a sheer lilac shimmer with violet, blue and silver glitter and a slight greenish duo chrome) on my index finger alone (3 coats) and over Let’s Be Friends (ring finger), because let’s get real, no one wants to remove more glitter polish than necessary. It’s a great layering shade, though I prefer the ethereal look it gives on it’s own. I kind of wish this had no glitter as I love the shimmering base color but the glitter takes away from it IMO. Fairly smooth glitter and easy to apply.

OPI Beyond the Pale Pink vs Let's Be Friends! vs Patience Pays Off swatch comparisonOPI Beyond the Pale Pink, Let’s Be Friends!, OPI Patience Pays Off

OPI Charmmy & Sugar vs Nicole DC Lover swatch comparisonOPI Charmmy & Sugar, Nicole for OPI DC Lover

Small + Cute = ❤

IMG_3555

A light pink cream. I love this color, but the formula is a PITA – the first coat was very streaky, the second a bit better, but it really requires 3 coats (or a very steady hand) if you want it to look flawless.  A shame as this was one of my fave shades of the bunch! The formula is also a bit on the thicker side to give yourself time for it to dry (aka not before bed). Due to all the coats required and the thick formula I found this chipped within days.

OPI Suzi Shops & Island Hops vs Small + Cute = <3 vs RBL Oh Slap! swatch comparisonOPI Suzi Shops & Island Hops, Small + Cute = <3, RBL Oh Slap! 

Look at My Bow!

IMG_3561

A soft orchid pink cream. This only needed 2 coats to opacity but its not 100% perfect – it’s a touch streaky. Beautiful color but not really for me, I think it’s a bit too saturated or something. I prefer the more muted look of Chanel Sweet Lilac (below).

OPI Look at My Bow! vs Chanel Sweet Lilac swatch comparisonOPI Look at My Bow!, Chanel Sweet Lilac

Super Cute in Pink & Starry-Eyed for Dear Daniel

OPI Starry-Eyed for Dear Daniel & Super Cute in Pink swatches

Again I paired up to avoid glitter removal. Super Cute in Pink is a medium-deep orchid crelly (creme/jelly formula). Gorgeous! You can see very slight VNL with two coats but I like it this way to preserve it’s squishy-ness. This is a perfect spring shade and was effortless to apply. Starry-Eyed for Dear Daniel is a semi-sheer orchid shimmer with violet, pink, blue and silver micro glitter. It required 3 coats to opacity on the index finger (worn alone) and 2 layered (ring finger). It’s grittier to the touch than ‘Charmmy’ but not terribly so. While I liked ‘Charmmy’ on it’s own, I prefered ‘Starry-Eyed’ layered, as it gives it more depth and punch in color.

IMG_3763Essie Splash of Grenadine, OPI Super Cute in Pink, Mark Cupcake

Zoya Kissy vs OPI Starry-Eyed for Daniel swatch comparisonZoya Kissy, OPI Starry-Eyed for Dear Daniel

Kitty White

IMG_3567

A sheer white shimmer. Sorry for the change in lighting, I found this needed sunlight to show off it’s pearlescent quality. These kind of shades aren’t really my bag, though it is pretty. Not much to say about this one, depending on your nail length you could get away with 2 coats (or if you don’t mind VNL) as I’ve done here. I’d think 3 would still not have it entirely opaque though.

OPI Chiffon My Mind vs Go to Grayt Lengths vs Kitty White vs Make Light of the Situation swatch comparisonOPI Chiffon My Mind, OPI Go to Grayt Lengths, OPI Kitty White, OPI Make Light of the Situation

Though ‘Grayt Lengths‘ looks a lot more gray than ‘Kitty White’, when held up to the light they’re VERY similar:

IMG_3741OPI Go to Grayt Lengths, OPI Kitty White

Never Have Too Mani Friends

IMG_3676

I’m not much of a black nail polish wearer except for layering purposes, but this is a great black nonetheless – another crelly finish, super shiny, super easy to apply (all of the crelly-type shades in this collection are a dream to apply). This is just 2 coats. It would be a great choice for anyone in the market for a black polish (or anyone who loves a good black polish).

a-England Camelot vs OPI Never Have to Mani Friends swatch comparisona-England Camelot, OPI Never Have Too Mani Friends

My Pal Joey

IMG_3690

A saturated cobalt blue. It’s not as in-your-face as some other cobalt shades (think YSL Bleu Majorelle, Nails Inc Baker St.) – it’s a bit lighter and because of the crelly texture it’s not so bold in finish. I really like this – it’s playful and eye-catching, and these textures are seriously out of this world. 2 coats for opacity (no VNL in sight here). LOVE!

IMG_3754Sally Hansen Pacific Blue, YSL Bleu Majorelle, OPI My Pal Joey, OPI Wild Blue Yonder

5 Apples Tall

IMG_3688

Some of these shade names I don’t get at all…ANYWAY, this is a gorgeous coral red that has a crelly finish but is fairly pigmented – if you were in a serious rush you could damn near get away with 1 coat (though I prefer the density of 2, as usual). Love the look of this! I don’t always like reds on me but this looks really flattering on my skintone (I think). So easy to apply with zero issues. It’s extremely close in color to Essie ‘Come Here!’ and I like the formula better, so I’ll be swapping this in for that!

*something* vs OPI 5 Apples Tall vs Love is In My Cards swatch comparisonEssie Come Here!, OPI 5 Apples Tall, OPI Love is In My Cards 

Spoken from the Heart

IMG_3684

A lovely saturated warm pink. I love this one as well! Again, it has that crelly texture though it’s not as pigmented as ‘5 Apples’ so I’d suggest 2 coats for sure. Even then it gives a hint of VNL but as mentioned I don’t mind that with formulas like this, the slight translucency is what gives it that squishy finish. Again, super shiny on it’s own and a cinch to apply.

Lippmann Daytripper vs OPI Spoken from the Heart vs butter London Snog swatch comparisonLippmann Daytripper, OPI Spoken from the Heart, butter London Snog

My Twim Mimmy 

IMG_3696

Again, WTF with the names? Anyway, this is a saturated medium yellow, very primary color-stuff (this along with the blue and red are like the most true representations of primary colors I’ve ever seen in a polish collection together). This doesn’t have the crelly texture (which would probably be a feat with yellow anyway since they’re the most annoying polish shades to work with) and is a touch streaky (I think 3 coats probably would be best so it looks flawless, but I was lazy and did 2), but as far as yellows go it’s actually not half bad. I don’t love it on my skintone especially as it’s so dense in color, but it might look better when I’m tanned.

OPI My Twin Mimmy vs Bee Mine Forever swatch comparisonOPI My Twin Mimmy, Bee Mine Forever

Overall, I thought this collection was really well-done and even not knowing a lick about Hello Kitty, I could enjoy all the shades. These are all without base coat as well and the majority are SO SHINY! Pretty, pretty, pretty.

What are your thoughts about this collection / about Hello Kitty? What is the DEAL?

, , , ,

4 Comments

OPI Starlight collection for Holiday 2015, Part I: The Moody Hues

Ugh, you GUYZ. I’ve had these swatches done for a few days but Elena is keeping me on my toes, as usual! She’s been waking up at 4am for the past few weeks and is ready to PAR-TAY, she thinks it’s time to get up for the day and I’m DANG tired. Today she also thought resisting nap time was a great idea, so I’m just plain worn out. BUT I did finally get her down (I keep checking the monitor with fingers crossed that she’ll stay asleep for awhile) so what better time than to get these pics & post up?

IMG_3103

I am extremely surprised at how much I’m enjoying the Starlight holiday collection from OPI – metallics and glitters are generally NOT my jam, but these are really doing it for me so far! The sparkle on a lot of these really is ‘out of this world’ (cue the cheese) and they look so pretty and festive in the dim light cast by the fire and/or Christmas tree. I keep wanting to change my mani every day to try them all fully (but ain’t nobody in THIS house got time for that, sadly). I’m working my way through the swatches though so I will have them all up before Christmas, I promise! Today I’m bringing you the first 6 which are the more moody, mysterious hues of the 18 shades in the collection (which, if I’m being honest, is INSANE – 18 colors!? When did polish collections get so HUGE?).

All swatches were taken in natural light unless otherwise specified.

OPI Guys & Galaxies swatch

Guys & Galaxies – a deep dark brown-red. It looks a touch streaky in the swatch above, but IRL it’s not, though you do need 3 coats to reach full opacity. It’s very glossy on it’s own – the shot above is with no top coat. It’s an easy formula to work with overall, despite needing that extra coat (though it’s a *touch* staining). I think this is a very sexy shade – and it’s NOT near black, which makes me happy.

OPI I’m in the Moon for Love swatch OPI I’m in the Moon for Love swatch

I’m in the Moon for Love – this is a medium plum shimmer with golden micro-shimmer. Every time OPI comes out with a shade like this (Dutch’ya Love OPI?, Lost My Bikini in Molokini, Purpletual Emotion…), I’m like ‘eh’ – even though they all look flattering on my skintone, I just can’t get into these types of purples. There is a depth and richness to this shade that appeals to me (you can see it better in the 2nd photo, taken under artificial light), but I know it’ll just be another purple that I keep NOT wearing regardless. Good formula though, two coats to opacity, with no application issues at all.

OPI Cosmo With a Twist swatch OPI Cosmo With a Twist swatch

Cosmo With a Twist – a royal blue with lighter blue shimmer that looks purple in some light due to a duo chrome finish. This SHADE, you guys!!! So, so gorgeous – it really looks like Outer Space to me. It needs 3-4 coats to reach full opacity, but it’s totally worth it. I would have never picked up this shade if left to my own devices, but I’m SO happy I got to try it out. Perfect holiday shade that’s not your typical red/silver/gold.

OPI Give Me Space swatch

Give Me Space – a bold, medium blue with silver shimmer. This has a VERY slight prismatic effect that’s really only visible in sunlight – so don’t let that be a reason you pick it up! The first coat went on sheer but it managed full opacity in two coats. I found this shade a touch fussy to apply, it can pull in spots if not applied with a relatively quick hand. I suggest loading up the brush and applying coats in one go, versus dipping back into the bottle. This is a beautifully rich shade, but along with the shimmer being a let down it didn’t wow me.

OPI No More Mr. Night Sky swatch OPI No More Mr. Night Sky swatch

No More Mr. Night Sky – a sparkling gunmetal. This is quite sheer; it requires at least 3 coats and looks best with 4. Despite that: he-LLO, gorgeous! This is another polish I would have never picked up as I don’t gravitate toward shimmers, but holy smokes – this is so pretty!! It’s the most beautifully sparkly, twinkly polish I think I’ve ever seen. It looks particularly amazing in low lighting (the 2nd photo), so it’s PERFECT for the holiday seasons parties and hanging out by the Christmas tree.

OPI Centre of the You-niverse swatch

Centre of the You-niverse – a charcoal with silver shimmer and black glitter bits. This is 2 coats, though depending on how thickly you apply your coats you may need a 3rd. Even though it’s got minimal glitter, they’re so tiny they’re a pain to remove entirely. For black polish lovers though this is a great shade; top coat makes it really gleam.

IMG_3110

Sooo, basically I want to keep 4 of the 6 shades shown…that does NOT help me decrease my polish collection! Dang it. I just think these are so lovely for the holiday season or for any time you want a bit of sparkle that’s a little understated (re: not a full-on glitter) but still fabulous. Well done so far, OPI!

Photo outtakes: Last night when I took the bottle shots Elena hightailed it to where I was and got her grabby hands in there lol…at least I got one good shot (above) before the destruction!

IMG_3113 IMG_3118 IMG_3116 IMG_3115 IMG_3112Who, me?

, , , , , , ,

5 Comments

OPI Venice collection for Fall 2015 {swatches & review}

Ok, here’s the post I’ve been promising for weeks, finally! For those who have been waiting, I’m genuinely sorry – what with the move, and the upheaval in Elena’s schedule (due to the move), carving out any time for the blog has been nearly impossible, as she naps for maybe 30 minutes at a time, tops. Nap time = mama’s productive time, therefore: no nap time = nothing accomplished. On top of that, Elena was sick with some kind of virus since Thursday and pretty much slept or snuggled on her mama for 4 days straight. I didn’t really mind – love the chance for extra cuddles! – but it was anxiety-inducing as the first time she’s been sick, and again I got a whole lot of nuthin’ done.

Anywho. She’s currently napping for who knows how long and I just can’t wait any more! May I present to you the OPI Venice collection for fall 2015!

OPI Venice collection fall 2015 OPI Venice collection fall 2015

Since time is a tickin’ I’m going to get right to it! Let’s start off with my favorite shade from the collection:

Tiramisu for Two

OPI Tiramisu for Two swatch

Yep, it’s a ‘plain’ ‘ol nude (described as a ‘sweet coffee cream’) – but let me assure you, this nude is anything but boring! It is SO creamy and pigmented and the perfect mix of neutral tones that makes it stupidly flattering, at least on my skintone. And the application is great too, just 2 easy coats with no drag or streaks to be found. Probably the current fave nude in my collection!

OPI Tiramisu for Two swatch comparison

It looks a lot more pink here in this swatch but it’s just the lighting – it’s more beige in person. However, this photo does serve to show how it compares to another neutral, Dior Incognito. I’ve always found that Incognito is actually almost too pink and deep to be a true nude on me, whereas Tiramisu for Two is several tones lighter and therefore better. That’s right, I said it – an OPI is better than a Dior.

O Suzi Mio

OPI O Suzi Mio swatch

My second favourite in the collection. I absolutely ADORE the plummy tones of this polish and it’s high-shine crelly texture. So perfect for fall! Here I’m wearing it with 2 coats because I like the slight sheerness which helps retain the eggplant tone, but three will make it completely opaque.

OPI O Suzi Mio swatch comparison

Another reason I love this shade is that it doesn’t have that ‘almost black’ feeling about it which I really don’t favour. Here I’ve compared it to Zoya Anja which I always want to love but don’t quite because it’s just too dark. O Suzi Mio as you can see still looks purple, not black (especially when compared to the actual black shade above it).

Purple Palazzo Pants

OPI Purple Palazzo Pants swatch

Another winner here for me, though I don’t exactly feel fall-ish when I look at it. This shade was a gorgeous formula as well – 2 coats and loads of shine all on it’s own. These types of purple-pink shades I find quite flattering on me as well.

OPI Purple Palazzo Pants swatch comparison

The sad part about this shade is that it’s pretty similar to Chanel Sweet Lilac, which means I probably have to let it go (the OPI, not the Chanel {god forbid!}). I haven’t done it yet because I think I might wear it for one full manicure first…it’s clearly not an exact dupe but it’s close enough that in my purging state I can’t justify keeping both!

My Gondola or Yours? 

OPI My Gondola or Yours? swatchOPI My Gondola or Yours? swatch

This was a surprise to me in two ways: 1) it contains shimmer, which you can see in direct sunlight, and 2) I really liked it on me! I’m not a fan of black polish on my nails, it always looks too harsh or something, but I really loved the effect of this shade. I don’t know if it was the shimmer that did it (it’s not very noticeable in the shade or indoors), or the subtle crelly finish, but whatever it is it’s working for me! This does require 3 coats for opacity but they weren’t fussy to apply at all. I don’t have any shades to compare to this as I don’t own black polish!

It’s a Piazza Cake

OPI It’s a Piazza Cake swatch OPI It’s a Piazza Cake swatch

Another complete surprise was how much I enjoyed this shade, a devout non-orange wearer! Orange has never looked good on me IMO, but the burnt tones of this shade (which you see more in the first photo) make this quite wearable and absolutely the most perfect fall-ish shade! I’m wearing this as a full manicure right now (check it out on my Instagram) and it’s one of those shades I keep staring at, which is how I know it’s a keeper. SO pretty and different. And guys – this is a 1-coater! Here I’m wearing 2, but today I only did 1 (time of the essence, etc. etc. etc.). Fabulous! I also have nothing like this.

A Great Opera-tunity

OPI A Great Opera-tunity swatch

Yet another shade that I initially thought I wouldn’t like but ended up enjoying! It was a *bit* strange-looking on my hands as it made any redness stand out, but on toes – oh YES. I feel like I should be wandering around a fabulous resort with this shade on. It’s described as a melon and I’d say that’s accurate – it’s actually kind of perfect for the transition between summer and fall. Love this! Note that it is a little on the thick side so be careful in your application to ensure a smooth finish.

OPI A Great Opera-tunity swatch comparison

Compared to Chanel Inattendu, which is a peach-nude, this has more pink/red in it’s base. I like it’s uniqueness.

Venice the Party?

OPI Venice the Party? (LE) swatch

Ok, now we’ve reached the shades I was more ‘meh’ about. Though this is gorgeous in the bottle and probably lovely on the right skintone (it positively glows!), I didn’t like it on me at all. It also doesn’t make me think of fall very much – maybe if it were a bit deeper in tone. This is 1 of 3 LE shades in the collection so if you love it you need to snap it up sooner rather than later. Application was good, 2 easy coats, but beware that it does stain slightly. I also noticed chipping after 2 days with this one (I wore it as a full mani). I don’t really wear these kinds of colors so I have no comparison swatches for you, sorry!

IMG_2280

I paired this with A Great Opera-unity for a mani/pedi combo…I wasn’t that into it, to be honest. Venice the Party? was too shimmery I think to suit it. Oh well!

Gimme a Lido Kiss

IMG_2388

I had my fabulous assistant help me with these next two colors – she was getting bored the day I needed to take these shots so I occupied her with some of the bottles lol. She does good work, eh?

OPI Gimme a Lido Kiss swatch

Gimme a Lido Kiss is a red shimmer that I found kind of dull, to be honest. The glow on this one isn’t all that fabulous, and it leads more orange than blue so on me I wasn’t wild about how it looks. Great formula though, thin but pigmented; you could almost make this a 1 coater but I’d go with 2 to be safe.

OPI Gimme a Lido Kiss swatch comparison

I thought Misa’s Red Pumps at the Nordstrom might be comparable to Gimme a Lido Kiss, but the former leans cooler and has that glow that the latter is lacking. I won’t be replacing that one, that’s for sure!

IMG_2396

Up next ladies {and gents!}, we have St. Mark’s the Spot!

OPI St. Mark’s the Spot (LE) swatch

A ‘royal blue pearl,’ this shade has a lot of depth to it and is kind of mesmerizing to look at, no? That said, it’s not for me – shimmer polishes in strong colors just turn me off for some reason. This has a good formula as well, 2 easy coats, and it’s another LE shade so snap it up if you want it! Though I have a ton of blue shades, I don’t have any with an intense shimmer/metallic like this one.

IMG_2385

I wore it with Gimme a Lido Kiss which I think was a better match than the previous pairing. Feels kind of US Patriotic now that I think about it!

Amore at the Grand Canal

OPI Amore at the Grand Canal swatch

I was eager to wear this shade because I love a deep red, and it is quite nice, though it looks brighter here than in person (and could probably use a top coat to really make it polished). It’s definitely pretty, but not terribly original. Good formula, 2 coats and no fuss.

OPI Amore at the Grand Canal swatch comparison

I knew when I saw ‘Amore’ that it would be similar to other shades in my collection: Tom Ford Bordeaux Lust and Essie Limited Addiction. It’s kind of a hybrid of the two, and while it’s nice I am definitely not keeping it over the other two. I wear red polish so rarely as it is I don’t need to add another to the mix anyway!

Worth a Pretty Penne

OPI Worth a Pretty Penne swatch

When I first laid eyes on this shade I was sure I was going to love it, but turns out it’s just too close to my skintone to be anything stand-out. That being said, this is a great polish with visual interest from the flecks of dark and light copper, and it could be a 1-coater if desired. It also has zero brushstrokes so if you’re a fan of metallic polishes you’ll like this one! I personally don’t love metallics so I have nothing to compare to this.

IMG_2577

I paired Amore at the Grand  Canal with Worth a Pretty Penne, and again I was kind of ‘meh’ about it. Looks nice enough and goes well together but it seems kind of ho-hum to me. Maybe I’m just fussy!

Gelato My Mind

OPI Gelato on My Mind swatch

This was another shade that did not say ‘fall’ to me in the least, but sometimes I think brands are just trying to do something unexpected so it doesn’t bother me when they include shades like this. This is a beautiful color to be sure, so vibrant – but the formula was not so great. The 1st coat was streaky and consecutive coats can become disastrous if not applied quickly, as this polish is prone to dragging.

OPI Gelato on My Mind swatch comparison

Though I have several aqua shades, the only one Gelato My Mind is truly similar to is another OPI, Eternally Turquoise, the latter being a bit more muted and a hint less green. Due to the formula, I won’t even be entertaining the idea of keeping ‘Gelato’ – there’s no room for crappy polish anymore, no matter how pretty it is!

Be There in a Prosecco

OPI Be There in a Prosecco swatch

This is an opaque cream shade, and while I do love pale tones lately, I wasn’t wild about this. Aside from the formula, which is a bit streaky but not terrible (especially for such a light shade), there is echoes of Zoya Cho about this that turn me off – I think it’s the more warm, yellowish leaning about it that doesn’t work for me. It’s like a dirty white.

OPI Be There in a Prosecco swatch comparison

Once again, the comparison shot shows it much different in tone than it is IRL. The closest shade I have to it is OPI The Beige of Reason; however, that is a sheer so they end up looking quite different when worn – and ‘Beige‘ is lighter in tone, anyway.

Baroque…But Still Shopping!

OPI Baroque…But Still Shopping! (LE) swatch

This is the last of the 3 LE shades! I love the name of this one…actually I enjoy the names of a lot of these for once! I was really stoked for this shade and though it was going to be a winner, but….no. Just no. The tone of it isn’t great on my skin for one, which doesn’t make for a bad polish – just bad on me – but aside from that, it’s got those horrible glitter bits in it that just don’t work in an opaque polish! Remember Pineapples Have Peelings Too and how ugly that was? I thought at first this would be sheer, with all that glitter, but when I went to layer it, it just wasn’t happening – way too much pigmentation. Bleh. I don’t like this at all (but the formula is good, 2 quick coats to opacity). I have nothing to compare this to.

I Cannoli Wear OPI

OPI I Cannoli Wear OPI swatch

Last but not least! Historically I don’t like pale grey tones one me as they usually lean too bluish and just don’t look cute. I feel the same about this shade, sadly, though I recognize my skintone doesn’t represent most, so this probably would look great on a lot of people! It’s got a thin formula that builds up nicely in 2 coats – it’s a touch fussy but less so than ‘Gelato‘ so if you like this shade it’s worth it to pick it up. As I don’t enjoy these shades I don’t have any comparisons for it.

There you have it – a timely review for a seasonal collection, hurrah! Hopefully the LE shades are still available if any of you are interested in those. Overall I quite liked this collection; while there were a few duds, even the shades I didn’t like on me I could appreciate being flattering on someone else. Considering fall is my favourite month I’m pleased OPI nailed this release!

IMG_2308

, , , , ,

7 Comments

Holiday Color Pairings

Holiday Colors

When I start to think about it, it’s not really a surprise to me that I love makeup.  When I was a kid, I use to spend hours pairing my crayons together in color combinations I thought looked good together (which was also a great indication of my obsessive tendencies toward organization, but that’s a whole OTHER topic in itself!).  While I don’t feel societal pressures to follow trends in shades (woohoo, Emerald for 2013!), nor feel like I ‘should’ wear darker colors in winter and brighter colors in summer, I choose to follow these paths often because it just makes sense to me.  I love the idea of changing the shades I wear according to seasons – heck, I even do it with the change in weather!  Rain means somber shades of grey or blue; sun means warm tones of gold, or brights like aqua and orange; and snow equals icy silvers and cool pinks and purples.  Its just how I roll, ya’ll!

Holiday Colors (2)

As it’s the holidays, of course I imagined an array of festive shades to represent the season, and since the work was already done, I thought I’d share them with you!  On the weekend for the first time I matched my lips to my tips, and it was a lot of fun.  I’m not entirely sure I’d do the same with eyeshadow, but the colors below all complimented a polish I own so well I figured what the heck.  I hope you enjoy!

Holiday Colors - SilverBobbi Brown Chrome Eye Shadow in Pewter; Chanel Le Vernis in 529 Graphite

Holiday Color Swatches - Silver (2) Holiday Color Swatches - SilverChanel Graphite; Bobbi Brown Pewter

Both of these silvers are so much more than plain ol’ silver.  They both veer into a warmer tone rather than stark icy shades, which means they’re quite wearable for all skin tones.  Pewter is currently unavailable as this was an LE shade, but at times Bobbi Brown brings it back in palettes and such, so keep your eyes peeled!  Graphite has had a ton of reincarnations over the past year since it was released (though I don’t believe it’s LE anyway) – the best being Sally Hansen’s Shoot the Moon which was just featured on All Lacquered Up.

Holiday Colors - RedEssie Limited Addiction; Make Up For Ever Rouge Artist Natural in #46

Holiday Color Swatches - Red (2) Holiday Color Swatches - RedEssie Limited Addiction; MUFE #46

MUFE’s #46 Rouge Artist lippie was the red shade I wore on the weekend to compliment my red manicure (done with China Glaze Ruby Pumps).  I ADORE this lipstick; it is by far my favorite red that I own.  It’s more of a true red I think, and looks so darn good on!  The moistness of the lipstick keeps it looking so juicy and festive without being overwhelming in the least.  It feels amazing on and I just can’t get enough!  The only downside is that it’s only available at MUFE Pro stores and kiosks, but well worth the effort.

Essie Limited Addiction was, unfortunately, limited edition, but there are a billion reds out there I’m sure that are similar – just a bit deeper than your typical shade and neither warm nor cool.

Holiday Colors - GreenMAC Jealousy Wakes; a-England Saint George

Holiday Color Swatches - Green (2) Holiday Color Swatches - Greena-England Saint George; MAC Jealousy Wakes

Hot DAMN Saint George is beautiful!  I don’t wear this polish nearly as much as I should, mainly because when I bought it last year, I wore it about three times in a few weeks – obsessed, I was!  I’m wearing this to my work Christmas party this week and I’m super excited!  Its one of the few greenish hues I own, and one of the few of that color palette I like.  In truth it’s more teal than green but whatever – evergreen, shall we say?  I LOVE IT and all it’s prismatic shimmer.

Jealousy Wakes is also another shade I rarely wear, probably because I don’t wear color in my shadows nearly as much as I used to, but I still enjoy it from time to time when I do pull it out.  I dislike the texture of the shadow immensely – it’s so stiff and rough! – but it IS a lovely shade.

Holiday Colors - GoldSephora Brand She Sparkles; SpaRitual Aurum

Holiday Color Swatches - Gold (2)Holiday Color Swatches - Gold (3) Holiday Color Swatches - GoldSpaRitual Aurum; Sephora Brand She Sparkles

Oooh, sparkly indeed!  Though Aurum is sort of a crap color on me – probably on most people, it’s so damn blingy I’m going to HAVE to pull it out for the holidays!  Look at that sparkle!  It’s a bit more greenish-gold than the orange-y gold of She Sparkles, but they both shimmer prettily together, don’t you think?  I wore She Sparkles like crazy the last holiday season (when I purchased it), but haven’t given it much love since.  I’ll surely be pulling it out again this month!

Holiday Colors - BlackMAC Dark Soul Pigment; Illamasqua Creator

Holiday Color Swatches - Black (2) Holiday Color Swatches - BlackIllamasqua Creator; MAC Dark Soul

Though I’m not a huge lover of black nail polish, Creator has won me over with its glittery goodness, and looks both elegant and edgy at the same time.  It compliments Dark Soul so perfectly!  I could totally see rocking these two shades together, it’s like they were made for each other.  I rarely wear Dark Soul for sort of obvious reasons (its a shimmery charcoal shadow – the rockstar look doesn’t exactly work at the office), but I’m trying to find ways to implement it more when I can.  It’s definitely a perfect shadow for the holidays!

It was fun making these pairings and a huge throwback to my formative years 😛  It’s also scary to see that I happen to have enough polish and makeup that I can actually make pairings that coordinate so well… ~shrugs~ I’m a collector, what can I say?

Have you gotten into the matching trend?  Would you be willing to try it, or do you avoid it at all costs?  What colors say ‘holiday’ to you?

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

12 Comments

Illamasqua’s Generation Q: Creator Nail Varnish, Opulent Sheer Lipgloss, and Wisdom Precision Ink Review & Swatches

Even though the weather is still warm (though by no means as hot and humid as it has been!), and fall doesn’t officially start for like, 3 weeks, I’ve still jumped the gun and switched around all my makeup and nail polish to reflect cooler-weather shades.  What can I say – I love change! 😀

Illamasqua Opulent Sheer Lipgloss

Helping me kickstart my shift into fall beauty are a few great key pieces from Illamasqua’s new fall/winter collection, Generation Q.  I love the idea behind the collection, that beauty is ageless – particularly for someone who is just moving out of the ‘downtown party’ stage, I like to think that even though I’m not out every night dancing it up, that I can still wear fabulous makeup without feeling I’m now ‘too old’.  Truth be told, it’s not something I think of too much – my mom is a perfect model of someone who still absolutely loves to have fun with makeup and manages to still look fabulous doing it!

Illamasqua Creator Nail Varnish

The three pieces I have to show you today pretty much cover the bases for a great transition between seasons: an antiqued gold liquid liner (Precision Ink in Wisdom); a rainbow beige gloss (Sheer Lipgloss in Opulent); and a magical sparkling black nail polish (Nail Varnish in Creator).  All three are crazy-wearable yet still edgy, which is my kind of makeup!

First, the glittering goodness that is Creator ($18CAD).

Creator is a black polish with small glitter particles heavily dispersed throughout.  It dries with slight texture that is totally eradicated with topcoat – the addition of which brings out the shimmer that much more.  As expected with Illamaqua polishes, this was easy-peasy to apply – easy flowing with good consistency, and you can almost get away with just one coat!

Just a quick comparison between this shade and Orly’s Goth as I’m sure some of you are wondering – and as you’ll see, they’re really apples to oranges.

Index and middle finger – Goth; ring and pinky fingers – Creator

Obviously, Creator is far superior!!  While Goth is nice and shiny without topcoat, it doesn’t make up for the fact that it lacks the density of Creator’s glitter – which helps give the latter it’s fabulous sparkling quality.  Add a topcoat to smooth it out and you’re good to go!

Next, we have the ultra-pretty Opulent gloss ($20CAD).

Opulent is a lovely sheer beige lipgloss with pearly multicolored shimmer.  It’s wearable on it’s own, imparting a beautiful amped-up nude look to the lip, but it would also be fabulous layered over pretty much any other shade of lippie.

The texture of the shimmer is slightly gritty but only just so.  It’s comfortable to wear with a touch of stickiness that helps it wear well for several hours.  The only drawback I found to this gloss was the applicator, the bristles of which are somewhat stiff and don’t allow the brush to easily lay the gloss down on the lip.  The brush was also slightly splayed from the get-go, so my technique is to use it merely to dab the gloss on my lip then blend with my finger or separate lip brush.  Not ideal, but not a deal-breaker either!

I left my favorite product for last – the liquid liner in Wisdom ($34CAD)!

I have another Precision Ink liner, Havoc, which I also adore – liquid liner is my favorite style of liner, and these are some of the best.  I find the pointed, sponge-tipped applicator terribly easy to use; if I’m having a particularly challenging day, I can even just hold the wand parallel to my lash line and dab it on and still get a great effect.  These liners are also uber-waterproof, and won’t come off ’till you wash them off with remover or cleanser.

On top of the fabulosity of the formula, I mean – check out this shade, dudes!  It’s soooo good 🙂  I love that it’s the perfect mix of khaki and gold, which means it’s pretty much wearable all year round, seasonally speaking.  And I’m pretty sure it’ll look terrific with every single eye color of life!  Gah…I absolutely Love Love LOVE this liner!!!

Here’s a quick face I did using both the liner and lipgloss, and then just adding a touch of Estee Lauder’s Illuminating Gelee in Shimmering Sands on cheekbones:

What I love about these three products is how well they go together; and looking at the entire Generation Q collection, I find it exceptionally cohesive.  I also enjoy that while the promotional images for the collection showcase vastly different and sometimes outrageous looks, the actual shades used aren’t hard to use and work for all skintones (and ages!).  I feel that this is one of the most enticing fall collections for me – I want to pick up each and every single product in the launch!  And I just might do so….but this is a good start, for now 😉

What pieces from Generation Q are you lemming? 

*Products were provided by the PR company/brand for my unbiased consideration.

, , , , , , , , ,

23 Comments

Yay! Mailbox Treats: A-England’s Camelot Plus A Few Sneak Peeks

I don’t think there’s a soul on Earth who doesn’t like to get mail (when it’s the non-$$-owing kind).  I personally love to get mail (even bank statements!), and am sure to send it out as much as I can – Christmastime gets all kinds of crazy.  The absolute best/worst kind of mail is the kind that results from online shopping: awesome because you got a real treat delivered to your door! – but a little scary because it can get out of hand, quickfast.  I haven’t yet reached the *yikes!* stage, but I DO have to hold myself back quite frequently.

Lately I’ve been indulging both my love of beauty and my love of mail by engaging in a whole bunch of swaps, ticking things off my lemmings list methodically which is super-terrif.  However, before I got oh-so-wise, I did do a wee bit of other purchasing:

The Too Faced bronzer and the NARS eyeliner were swap items, but the ELLIS FAAS ELLIS FAAS ELLIS FAAS (just making sure you’re paying attention – I bought ELLIS FAAS!) product I purchased last month.  ELLIS FAAS revamped their website in July and to celebrate they were offering free shipping till the end of the month, so I had to get on that!  The brand was another on my “12 Brands to Try” list, so I’m pretty stoked.  I won’t say any more about the mystery product, but keep your eyes peeled for a review and FOTD very soon! 🙂

Now, I haven’t forgotten that there’s also an a-England polish kicking around there too – one more shade to add to my collection!  The brand was also having a promotion last month where the Mythicals collection was all half off, and when I noted one day that I didn’t own a black polish, my smart lady-friends Larie and Eugenia both recommended Camelot as a must-have.

Camelot is an inky, rich black that doesn’t have any other leanings – it’s a true, straightforward black, with no funny business.  The formula is lovely, with the perfect consistency, and it’s fairly shiny on it’s own (here its shown with one coat and no top coat), but I think with two coats and a top coat it would simply gleam.  However, it’s unlikely I’ll ever wear this as is, truth be told.  I think shades like this are better left to the more fair-skinned of the world, as the contrast between light and dark is much more pronounced, and in my eyes, prettier.  But there are several polish shades I own that could benefit from a black base coat, so I figured it was kind of a staple requirement in my stash.

With flash

Artificial light

…Then I got an idea. An awful idea. This gal got a wonderful, *awful* idea!

Remember that garish gold polish I showed you a few weeks ago?  The SpaRitual one that just about blinded you with it’s bling?  Well, I think I might have found a way to make it work…

BAM! KAPOW!  OH SNAP!  Yes, my friends, I discovered a fabulous way to wear Aurum without wanting to take it off instantly!  In fact, I kinda want to wear this look a whole lot!!  And it’s so funny….today I decided that I wanted to get my hands on butter London’s Wallis – yep, I was gonna have it – and now I think I can hold off (for a while, at least).  I know that it’s not a dupe by any means, but the idea of it is so similar that I can be satisfied on that front I think!  I’m so pleased that I will be able to wear Aurum, as I can’t stand buying things that end up being all wrong.  The black base totally chills out the shade (this is just one coat over Camelot) and grounds it so it’s not so aggressively sparkly and yellow-toned, and almost makes it look a little edgy.  Love love love.

So all in all I had a great day today!!  I have another handful of swaps on the way (yea, I’ve been busy), and a lot of pretty stuff to show you, so I have to get on it!  I hope everyone is enjoying the last weeks of summer, it’s been a fantastic one here (can you believe, that our ‘norm’ now is sun!?), so I’m reluctant to see it go, but I am pretty excited for fall makeup shades!  And this combo of Aurum and Camelot will totally fit in, don’t you think??

Do you order things online or only buy in-store? 

, , , , , , , ,

16 Comments

Ooh, Sparkly: Icing’s Blackout

I’ve been diversifying a bit with the topics of my posts, but I still have a handful of nail polish swatches to show you, so I gotta get on it!  I should be receiving my package from Nail Polish Canada any day now, so I’ll be on a swatchapalooza then!  I can’t wait!!

Without further ado (because really…I think I ramble too much), please let me present to you the polish ‘Blackout’ from Icing’s nail polish line (Icing being Claire’s little sister I think):

I layered two coats of Blackout over OPI’s Diva of Geneva , as this polish is fairly thin and really needs some underwear first.  You could get enough coverage after three coats, but not the same depth.  I saw a post once where they layered this over China Glaze Ruby Slippers, and is was awesome.  However, I was wearing a specific outfit with pink and wanted it layered over pink to coordinate.  You can’t really tell but I would know.  And I’m anal like that.

Cheap-y polish, $5.49 or something at Icing (sad that $5.49 seems like a steal now, after the price I’ve paid for some polishes!), and applies well with no real issues aside from the sheerness – which is sort of a given as this polish is pretty much a jelly.  The holo shimmer in this is actually fairly apparent without any particular lighting (though it was tough to capture in photos), which is a plus.  This isn’t a polish I wear often, but it doesn’t mean that I don’t appreciate it or or that it’ll go up for swap; sometimes there are *those* polishes that you really like but you just need the right occasion – this is one of those.  Just the way it is, folks 🙂

I hope everyone is getting into the holiday spirit and enjoying all that the season brings!  Don’t let all the hulabaloo get to you – remember what it’s all about – the rum ‘n eggnog! LOL ~kidding!~  Really though, I hope no one is stressing themselves out, it’s not worth it and it taints the beauty of this time of year!

 

, , , ,

6 Comments