Archive for category Coral
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
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.
Small + Cute = ❤
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.
Look at My Bow!
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).
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.
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.
Though ‘Grayt Lengths‘ looks a lot more gray than ‘Kitty White’, when held up to the light they’re VERY similar:
Never Have Too Mani Friends
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).
My Pal Joey
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!
5 Apples Tall
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!
Spoken from the Heart
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.
My Twim Mimmy
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.
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?
Happy Canada Day!!! It’s been a busy week and an even busier weekend, as usual! I had an excellent weekend celebrating Canada’s 146th birthday, even despite the fact that the weather has been absolute CRAP. Sometimes though, the fact that everyone pulls together to make the best of a shitty situation (in this case, crazy rain and wind for DAYS) is almost better than if everything had been perfect. And when you’re doing all this with the people you care about, well, then it’s all gravy 😀
As the weather has been hit or miss this summer so far (with more misses than hits), I haven’t been very concerned about my mani/pedi situation, but last week after picking up those few new shades, it was due time to get on it! Below I tried out two of the shades, Zoya Robyn – a bright sky blue – and Essie Come Here, a coral red from the 2013 Resort collection. Both are perfect vibrant summer shades that work well on both fingers and toes – I love them!
Zoya Robyn was a unique addition to my polish collection – most blue shades I have lean teal or aqua, or are more of along the lines of a deep navy. This eye-catching shade is perfect for spring and summer, and I really love it! I wasn’t sure about it on my hands at first, but it really grew on me and I ended up wearing it for a full four days. The formula is thin which means you have to be a bit careful in application, but it only required two coats so it’s not terribly fussy. It wore exceptionally well and I only had minor tip wear after those four days.
Essie Come Here is my kind of shade! I love the strong red leaning that sometimes leans pink and sometimes leans more orange. It looks fabulous on toes and will go with pretty much any shade I pair it with. Formula was lovely with absolutely no issues or tricks required for application. 100% win! I haven’t yet worn Essie Come Here on my fingernails, but I am eager to – below I have a few comparison swatches to show you (aka justify my purchase); it’s really not like anything I personally own.
I thought Snog was going to be quite close, but it’s far too pink. Surfin’ for Boys is in the right vein but much lighter and with shimmer. Meet Me at Sunset is clearly too orange, but it has the same intensity of saturation. From what I understand, Essie’s Ole Caliente and Flirt are very similar to Come Here, so if you have either of those, you’re probably set. Bottom line: It’s a great shade that I’m totally diggin’!
What do you think of this combo? Have you come up with any great combinations of your own lately?
In the past couple weeks, I’ve been picking up or receiving packages full of great treats which I’ve thoroughly been enjoying. At the moment, I’m still in the testing phase for most of the products so no reviews quite yet, but so far everything has been really stellar. I’ve also purchased a few new nail polishes, and hope to get some pictures up tomorrow! For now, I’m just going to leave you with a few teaser photos and some quick thoughts.
Boscia Tsubaki Facial Oil – I picked this up during the Sephora sale in April but just opened it within the last month or so. Even though the consistency is lighter than my beloved Tarte Maracuja Oil, I find it’s a little more oily somehow so I only need the smallest amount. Otherwise, it’s quite nice and is a pleasure to use, though I’m not sure it gives me the same results as the Tarte oil.
Boscia Clear Complexion Treatment – Lately I’ve been breaking out here and there, which is very unusual for me. I attributed it to something going on with my skin so I picked up this natural BHA product to see if it would help clear out my pores. While it feels really great going on – lightweight and absorbs quickly – and leaves my skin feeling super smooth, I think the real reason for the breakouts was putting coconut oil in my hair every night; I think it was getting on my pillow and clogging my pores a bit. Since I’ve stopped doing that, the breakouts have been clearing up – but who know, could be this product too!
MD Formulations Moisture Defense Antioxidant Hydrating Gel – I needed a new antioxidant product and have read a lot of great this about this gel. It’s excellent for oilier skin, especially in these warmer months, as it absorbs lightning fast with no residue yet still hydrates. I am already in love with this!
Indeed Labs Hydraluron – I grabbed this on a whim as I needed to spend $50 to get 20x the bonus points at Shoppers last weekend. It was on sale for $20 from $27 and I’d been wanting to check it out at some point, so I made the purchase. I use this during the day when I want my skin to look plump and hydrated without the accompanying greasy look from many other moisturizers. I can’t tell if this does much else to my skin just yet, but I’m definitely not noticing any issues!
Vichy Capital Soleil Mexoryl XL Sheer Lotion SPF45 – this sunscreen is FANTASTIC. I tend to steer clear of chemical sunscreens due to my eczema, but read a good point somewhere about Vichy and La Roche-Posay being great brands to try for broad spectrum sun protection because they are often formulated for sensitive skin. Whatever the case, this really is excellent on my fussy skin and I’ve had absolutely no problems or irritation from it whatsoever. It’s also incredibly lightweight and non-greasy, and doesn’t leave a whitish cast on my skin at all. It actually makes me want to wear sunscreen all the time. I adore it! It’s not cheap at about $27CAD, but it does go on sale (I purchased it for about $18) and it’s well worth the cost.
La Roche-Posay Anthelios Ultra-Fluid Lotion SPF60 – I just purchased this last weekend along with the Hydraluron, and I haven’t opened it yet as I am *just* finishing my Clinique sunscreen now. I have tried a sample of this however, and really liked how thin in consistency it was, how easy it spread on my face, and how it doesn’t leave a whitish cast. I have high hopes for this one!
Dior Spring Ball – my first Dior polish!! I wasn’t interested in these spring polishes at all, until I tried this one on at Sephora a few weeks ago and fell in love. However, it was sold out everywhere by that time – but I persevered and ordered it online from Sephora (along with two shades of NARS’ Radiant Creamy concealers – which I LOVE). Unfortunately, I’m a little disappointed in the shade – it’s not as beautiful as I remember, sadly. But it’s still very pretty and wearable, and I don’t regret the purchase too much.
Essie Come Here! – I have so many polishes in this color vein…but I can’t help myself ~sigh~ I got a hankering for a pretty coral red and felt I *needed* to have one, but I probably have a bunch of shades similar to this. However, I really do love it and I find this kind of tone works for just about every outfit. But – NO MORE CORALS. At least for a little while ;0)
a-England Sleeping Palace – the latest a-England release kind of crept up out of nowhere (as usual), and I ogled the beautiful shades along with everyone else. I actually have quite a few of the brands polishes, and usually pick up one or two from each collection. This was the stunner for me – a gorgeous dusty mauve with prismatic shimmer. It doesn’t feel like a summer shade to me, but come fall I’m going to be all over this. It’s really quite beautiful!
Zoya Robyn – I saw this on Lakeisha’s blog a couple weeks ago and decided I had to have it. It looks better on her than I, but I still like it a lot and can’t wait to wear this as a pedi shade. I had no colors like it at all so I’m pretty happy to add it to the collection.
As you can see, I have a lot of new things on the go! I’m almost at a skincare utopia which feels pretty damn awesome – I’d just like to get an antioxidant masque (Kahina’s looks/sounds perfect), an exfoliator of some sort (the Pure + Simple Organic Vanilla Cleansing Powder Becca mentioned here is right up my alley), and a cleansing oil (maybe Tatcha’s??) when my Clinique Take the Day Off balm runs out. In the sunscreen arena, I’m blissfully pleased with Vichy’s offering, and suspect I’ll feel the same about LRP’s too. The polishes weren’t all ectasy-inducing, but I’m pretty happy with them as well.
What sort of products have you been buying lately?
So yea. I sneezed funny on Sunday and then the next day I was sick with a cold. Has that ever happened to anyone else? I’m being dead serious – it’s like the sneeze dislodged the sickness or something. Ugh. Anyway, I was off work today and pretty much was a slug all day; even looking at the computer screen hurts my eyes. I am weird and don’t take medication when I’m sick (unless it’s that time of the month – then, JACK ME UP BABY) because I feel like it just masks the pain and makes me stay sick for longer. Or I’m a martyr. Either or. At least I know when I get pregnant one day I’ll be totally used to not being able to take meds (but I will not hesitate to get an epidural – eff that). So there’s that.
Anyway, I have photos of two polishes I had done comparison swatches for but never posted them, so here they are. First up is Chanel’s Orange Fizz (which I happen to be wearing this week, and seriously – I LOVE IT SO MUCH you guys should all buy a bottle, it’s good times) which I swatched against all my other orangey-coral polishes (spoiler – there are no dupes that I own, so you should just go buy a bottle of the real stuff):
You can see that aside from the LA Colors shade, the rest of the polishes are all in the same vein, but Flirty Tankini is less saturated and dries with a flat finish (though probably the closest match); Surfin’ for Boys is more pink and with a pearlesence about it; and Daytripper is more pink. What I love about Orange Fizz is that it’s super-shiny on it’s own, has a squishy quality to it, and is somehow both soft enough for spring but bright enough that it will be awesome in summer too 🙂
The next polish I have to show you is one I recently picked up from American Apparel, called Downtown LA. I was in the store a couple weeks ago buying Neon Violet for a gal at work, since she loved it so much on me, and decided to take advantage of the buy 3 for $18 deal (I also picked up their matte top coat for fun). Downtown LA is a bold red that leans ever so slightly orange. It is exceptionally close to butter London’s Come to Bed Red, though bL’s version really is more of a true red without the orange lean. I can tell the difference between the two but if I didn’t tell you, I’m sure you wouldn’t guess:
I have a hard time wearing red polish as I find on my skintone it looks a bit garish; however, I wore Downtown LA last week and actually liked it quite a bit. The warmer tone of the polish worked better on me than Come to Bed Red has in the past, and I made sure to cut my nails super-short which made the manicure less in-your-face. I won’t be stocking up on red polishes any time soon but it’s still nice to have a few great ones in your arsenal! I’ll likely pass along my butter London shade – I always hate to part with more high-end brands but I know I’ll never choose it over the AA color. I have to say, I really like AA polishes – they are almost one-coaters and apply so well!
So, I hope this keeps you entertained until I get better! I usually go into repair mode when I’m sick and rarely stay down for long, so I’ll be up and kickin’ by the weekend I’m sure 😀
What do you do with your nail polish dupes? Do you find red a difficult color to wear?
G’day to everyone!! I have been MIA for a while, longer than usual anyway – I have a backlog of photos of products to post, but I can’t seem to get inspired to write anything about them! Not that they aren’t all great in their different ways, but I guess I’m starting to feel like I’m just pumping out product reviews and not enough substance, you know? I need some time to do some more FOTD’s with underused products – now THAT was fun 🙂
I’m also doing an overhaul of my makeup stash and letting go of even more products that I just don’t use. I’ve been obsessing over my wishlist far too much and it’s getting to the point where I’m almost turned off the whole thing (as in, the buy buy buy! cycle). I updated my swap list on MUA and have been engaged in several different exchanges, trying to acquire things that I’ve been lemming but are core color products of a brand – I want to save most of my purchases for seasonal items or ‘big-ticket’ purchases that aren’t so easily swapped for. I’m thinking about doing a blog sale as well, though I don’t know how exciting some of the products may be…thoughts!?
In the meantime, I thought I’d do a ‘Summer Favorites’ rundown, versus my favorite of the month, because there hasn’t been just one thing I’ve been loving in July, but there have been a handful of things I keep returning to over and over!
Even though I love brights in the summer – vivid tropical hues that I never wear the rest of the year – I rarely have opportunities to wear them (I sometimes get ~crazy~ at work but overall I try to keep it appropriate). Often, my palette includes more natural, glowing hues that highlight my tanned skin and healthy glow, rather than being in-your-face. It’s one of the few times of the year where wearing less usually works to your advantage, and I like to capitalize on that!
I managed to snag Urban Decay’s ‘Lucky’ 24/7 Eyeliner Pencil in a swap last year, and although I loved how it looked, I didn’t wear it too often. However, this year in my effort to spread the love throughout my stash, I started playing with it more, and I think I’ve found my go-to makeup look: this, smudged over black eyeliner on both top and bottom lashes, enhances my eyes subtly but with a kind of bad-ass twist. It’s been a staple in my summer routine many days now, and I absolutely LOVE it. The metallic nature of this liner and the warm coppery hue, toned down a bit by the black, gives a depth to my makeup that is just perfect.
On days when I’m aiming to look even more natural, or to give a subtle glow to my look, I opt for MAC’s Melon Pigment, also another swap find (yay to being economical!), a peachy-gold metallic. On fair-medium skin, I hear the peach tones help it look particularly striking, especially on blue-eyed gals. On my skintone, it looks more golden than peach, and is fairly subtle – though it can be built up if need be, or applied wet. With just this and a whole lot of black mascara, I can create a wide-open eye that catches the light just so. I haven’t tried it yet, but I think I could even use this as a highlight on my cheekbones (though this probably only works for darker skinned gals).
The Milani Sunset Beach bronzer is one of the most inexpensive items in my stash, yet I wear this every day – the brownish tone is a slightly warm but overall neutral hue that works fabulously as a contour shade just under the cheekbone. It’s not too orange or muddy, and it’s got a great pigmentation that’s not heavy but just right to work well in layers if needed. If I’m in a hurry, buffing this on my temples, bridge of the nose, and just under the jawline as well gives me a great warmth and really makes me look polished with very little effort.
Obviously you’ve already heard all about my love of Chanel’s Inattendu polish – it’s just the perfect nude, especially for summer, when the warmer tones flatter skin so nicely. And because I wear SO many brights this time of year, it acts as the perfect counter-point. You really can’t go wrong!
MAC’s Lychee Luxe Lipglass is a glorious coral-pink shade with golden shimmer, and is so pretty on that I forgive it’s sticky texture. I can wear this with a variety of looks, either bold eyes or more natural, with golds and brights and jewel-tones, and it works for each one of them. On my somewhat pigmented lips and with my darker skin, it looks warm and juicy, giving my lips just enough color without ever being overwhelming or stealing the show. While I have decided not to buy any more MAC Lipglasses because of the texture problem mentioned, I’ll be genuinely sad to see this one go – and it’s only got about 1/3 left!
While all of these shades work perfectly for day or night, I’ve generally been wearing only loose powder to lightly even out my skintone during the day. When I’m headed to an event or out for the evening however, I like to look a bit more pulled together, and I’ve been using Make Up For Ever’s Face & Body foundation* in #18 ($40CAD) – a super lightweight foundation that covers imperfections without feeling heavy or like you’re wearing much of anything. As it’s water-based, its quite thin and is perfect for the hot, makeup-melting days of summer. It can also be built up to give extra coverage where needed – and can be used on the body as well (I love me some multi-purpose products!). #18 (for medium skin with olive undertones) is a very good match for my summer-tanned skin, and is warm, not ashy, which is great. I’m thinking about mixing a bit of this with my Hourglass Immaculate foundation when the cooler months arrive, as it leans a touch light and grey on me, and I think the two formulations will mix fairly well.
Here are some swatches of all the products above (left to right – MAC Lychee Luxe, MAC Melon, UD Lucky, Milani Sunset Beach, MUFE #18):
Honourable mentions go to MAC’s Arena eyeshadow (I’m plugging that shade hard, aren’t I?) and some of my other fave polish shades – Essie’s Bikini So Teeny (can’t get enough), MAC’s Mischievous Mint (the bottle is half-empty – seriously!), China Glaze’s Pink Plumeria (look for an upcoming ‘combo’ post with this shade), and Deb Lippmann’s Daytripper (check it out below!).
My mother keeps telling me I should be showcasing my polishes with color-contrasting objects, and I just happened to buy this especially pretty pale aqua throw pillows, sooo…
Pretty, huh? Initially when picked this up, I was disappointed when I tried it on – it’s more of a jelly texture, which is great, but not what I was expecting. And in artificial light, the shade fell a bit flat. However, the next day, I totally turned the other cheek – I couldn’t get enough of how lovely it was! It’s extremely shiny on it’s own, and so juicy – the jelly texture actually really makes it more than your regular coral polish, it just too this ol’ gal a little longer to see it ;P
What are some of your favorite summer items and looks?? Do share, I’d love to get some more ideas!
*Product provided by the PR company/brand for my unbiased consideration.
You remember how yesterday I talked about my admiration of those fabulous bloggers who were in the business of swatching full collections of nail polish on the regular? Well today I’m in admiration of anyone who buys a home!! Holy moley, let me tell you – it is SUPREMELY exciting to buy your first home (I guess, any home really!) – but there is so much to learn and info to absorb, wowza!!! It’s a lot for a brain to handle. Thankfully we’ve had absolutely stellar people working with us to find the condo and get our financing in order, but its been a relatively consuming pastime for the last few weeks. Well worth it, but mindblowing all the same!!
Anyway, we spent some time at the bank tonight wrapping things up, then come home to make dinner, then talked numbers some more…suddenly my evening has gone *poof* and I’ve hardly even done anything! I really wanted to get the second part out for the Summer Neons collection from China Glaze though, so here I am! The second half is just as eye-popping as the first, so get ready!
I’m With the Lifeguard is a ‘glimmering lime green,’ and while I love this shade in theory – makes me think of lime koolaid! – I’m not liking it on my skintone at all, though it is lovely to look at. The last picture is the most accurate for how bright this is. I found 3 coats was best to even out a bit of streakiness, and it had a similar formula as most other shades – thicker but fairly easy to work with. This dried semi-matte.
The description of Ride the Waves – a ‘dark ocean blue’ – is so terribly enticing to me. Due to the sheer, thin, jellyish formula, it really made me think of the deeper waters of the Caribbean! To avoid any VNL, 3 coats is absolutely necessary. I really like this shade – it reminds me of Nails Inc. Baker St. (which Beyonce was apparently wearing shortly after she had Ivy Blue, hence everyone wanted it) but it’s not quite as electric, though it’s still really very eye-catching. It’s darker and not as cool-toned in real life, and the squishy nature looks like you could just drink it up. As I was wearing it as my mani this week, I realized it would be perfect as a base for Lippmann’s Across the Universe!
Just as juicy and ripe-looking as the fruit to describe it, Under the Boardwalk, a ‘fluorescent raspberry’, has almost the same formula as ‘Ride the Waves’, but not quite as jellyish. Again, 3 coats best, though 2 is workable here, and it’s deeper in tone than it looks in photos. I feel pretty ‘meh’ about this shade – it’s quite nice but nothing stand-out to me in any way.
Love’s A Beach, a ‘sizzling hot pink’, is slightly warmer than ‘Hang-Ten Toes’, but the differences are slight and I personally wouldn’t feel it necessary to own both. If I had to chose, I think I’d pick this shade, as the blue-leanings are less pronounced. Formula was good; it applied easily without fuss. 3 coats were used here for good measure.
In theory, Surfin’ For Boys would be the ultimate shade: a ‘glistening bright coral’? Sign me up! However, there’s something off about this color for me; I think it’s the shimmer which looks almost purplish in certain light, and just feels a bit gaudy to me. It’s actually remarkably similar to another shade I own, LA Colors in Magnetic Force, except I think I like that polish better (well, at least the color). However, I think this is still a great shade for summer, and definitely a perfect pedi shade. It went on very easily in 2 coats, and dried semi-matte.
Last but not least, we have Flirty Tankini, a ‘shimmery strawberry smoothie pink’ with a particularly good formula. I could have done 2 coats with no problem but I did 3 to be nitpicky. I really liked the sweetness of this shade and though it went particularly well with my skintone. The shimmer was understated (as it didnt’ contrast with the base color) and I’m looking forward to wearing this as a full mani very soon!!
That wraps it up for the China Glaze Summer Neons collection! I liked this half equally as well as the first, and I have my faves – Ride the Waves, which grew on me, and Flirty Tankini, which is just too darn pretty! Though I enjoyed the formula of most shades as a whole, it was a bummer to apply 3 coats for almost all of the polishes here. A suggestion was made that I could layer these shades over a white polish to let the neon qualities really pop, and I think I’ll take that recommendation to heart. Every single shade was majorly bright, and to enhance that aspect would only serve to make this collection that much more special (and allow less coats of color overall!).
As a whole, I found a few of the shades in the collection not as unique as I’d like – some seemed to replicate shades I already have in my stash. However, I chose those shades for a reason, so what’s not to like? lol One complaint I have about the collection as a whole is that there are a fair amount of shades that are quite similar to each other – there are no dupes, but they’re close enough that I personally wouldn’t feel like I needed to own both/all. However, in person the differences between them are more obvious, so you may refute me there and I would be OK with that 🙂 Really, this collection is the epitome of fun, splashy shades for Summer, and if you want them all, who am I to argue?
What is your idea of the perfect Summer polish shade(s)? Would you try out a neon polish?
*Product samples were provided to me by the PR company/brand for my unbiased consideration.
Before I begin, I just want to give some serious accolades to any bloggers out there that have swatched an entire nail polish collection for our viewing pleasure. O.M.G. I’ve done maybe 4 swatches at a time, which was still quite a task, but 12 shades!?! Good grief! I spent most of my day Saturday and part of my day Sunday painstakingly applying each of the 12 shades of the Summer Neons collection from China Glaze, fearful that I was going to lose my sun, waiting between coats, hydrating and rehydrating my cuticles, and taking shot after shot of my nails to capture each shade as accurately as possible. Man Oh Man. It was truly exciting to have the opportunity – receiving the big box in the mail and knowing I’d never otherwise have such a chance – but I just wanted to give a shout out to the more established bloggers who are used to this sort of thing. You rock!! It’s quite a job, and I will forever have a different appreciation for collection swatches moving forward. Thank you, my lovelies 😀
Ok, with that out of the way – let’s get to the polish, shall we? Today I bring you the first part of my swatchapalooza; there really wasn’t a defined split between the shades, so I just kind of put them together in a way that made sense to me. The collection as a whole was a surprize hit for me. In promotional shots, I was unsure how I felt about a bunch of neon shades with shimmer – typically odd colors like electric green and eyeball-searing yellow do NOT do it for me, and I’m not a fan of shimmer overall – but somehow they made it work in a big way with this collection.
First up, we have Sun-Kissed, described as a ‘hot highlighter yellow’, and it was exactly that! I would never in a million years imagine I’d like a shade like this, but consider me converted! Somehow, this super-bright shade won me over, and I definitely see a full manicure with this in my near future. Obviously, I don’t have much experience with yellow polishes, but from what I hear they can be tricky to work with – this shade, while slightly streaky, was relatively painless to apply; you can get away with 2 coats but I applied 3 for the best opacity. Like many shades in the collection, it dries semi-matte.
Next up, Orange You Hot? – a ‘bright orange with attention-grabbing gold glimmer.’ I find the shimmer particles very fine, and the gold tone is lost in the base shade, but it’s still lovely. I liked it but didn’t love it on my skintone – I think it’ll be more of a pedi shade in my rotation than anything else. I felt similarly about the formula; it was good but not great. I applied 3 coats to get the smoothest application possible.
~Ah~ Pink Plumeria. My personal favorite of the whole collection. A ‘light pink with gold shimmer,’ it came out more like a coral-pink on my nails, and was soo flattering. It retains quite a neon look but in a way that’s tasteful and eye-catching rather than gaudy – it’s actually brighter in person than I was able to capture in these photos. The gold shimmer really gave it an extra-pretty sheen. Application was pretty good – 2 coats was sufficient, and how I wore it as a full mani, but I think 3 would probably be better, as it had a hint of patchiness on a few nails.
Hang-Ten Toes was actually the first polish I tried on from the collection; a ‘bubblegum neon pink with iridescent purple shimmer’, it looked and sounded far too enticing to pass up. In person, this shade is searingly bright – I found it difficult overall to capture the true neon nature of most of the polishes in the collection, this one in particular (I took about a million shots of this polish, and I’m still not satisfied!). Easy flowing with good consistency (you don’t need too much on the brush), it dries to a semi-satin finish. At an angle, the shimmer is somehow both obvious and elusive, which gives it mysterious depth. 2 coats is enough to reach good coverage, but 3 erases any VNL. I found the drying time of this shade was slower than I’m used to – which I found for a handful of shades in the collection (perhaps because I was applying 3 coats for many of them).
On of the best formulas of the bunch, Beach Cruise-r is a ‘glimmering fuchsia grape’, which only required two smooth coats to full opacity. On the nail, it reminds me a lot of American Apparel’s Neon Violet except with shimmer. This kind of color is a bit unexpected in Summer I think, because it has a deeper jewel tone that makes me think more of Fall, but the brightness makes it appropriate and fun for the warmer months too. Like Neon Violet, I’m slightly ambivalent toward it as a mani, but quite like it as a pedi shade. It’s brighter and more richly hued in person – closer to the last shot, below.
Finally, we have Splish Splash, a ‘bright sky blue shimmer,’ also with a great formula, though 3 coats is still best. This is not at all my kind of shade, but is an absolutely glorious color on it’s own – I want to own other things in this shade (just not wear it on my nails). Looking at these photos, I’m mesmerized by this color; but with my skintone, it looks a bit garish. In person it’s much more blue than aqua like it looks in these photos – closer to the last shot, below.
And so we conclude Part I of the Summer Neons collection! Overall I felt that there were some beautiful shades, even if they all didn’t ~go~ with my skintone. While many of the shades required 3 coats to look best to my liking, I still felt that the formulas overall were quite good; they didn’t dry too quickly and cause dragging, and applied very easily for the most part, with an excellent consistency in formula. Mostly I found that they were just a touch sheer and just the slightest bit patchy, but applying 3 coats cleared any of those issues up with ease. I also normally do a fast-drying top coat, whereas I used none in the swatches above (nor base coat), which could be why they seemed to take longer to dry than normal. In any case, I liked some of the shades so much that I’d be more than willing to put up with the extra coats. They all scream Summer to me, and just make me happy looking at them!
What are your thoughts on these shades from the collection? Are you into neon brights? Would you prefer them with or without shimmer?
*Product samples were provided to me by the PR company/brand for my unbiased consideration.