Creative musings in bright colors

Posts tagged ‘swatches’

Taking Off Purple

This is a comparison AND nail art! I wanted to compare all of my pastel purples, specifically to see if my newest was a good replacement! What you see here are two coats of the sadly dried up Lacey Lilac by Sally Hansen on my pinky and thumb, 4 coats of Essie Full Steam Ahead on my middle finger (I love this polish but FOUR coats is too many), and three coats of Abby on my pointer and ring finger.


In the end, Abby and Lilac are very close, so I am happy! Steam is a bit darker, a bit more blue-tinged, and has subtle shimmer. It remains a very pretty polish that I sadly have little use for because I can seldom wait for 4 coats of polish to dry!


Of course, then I added a gradient and just had fun with stamping one design a different angels. I am so happy I bought a bunch more Moyra stamping plates!


~ Pastel purple: Zoya – Abby
~ Pastel purple: Sally Hansen – Lacey Lilac
~ Light purple: Essie – Full Steam Ahead
~ Purple: Zoya – Malia
~ Dark purple: Zoya – Danielle
~ Stamp: Moyra – 32 Nature


Hope you enjoyed! I think there are going to be a few more swatches with nail art this week. We shall see if I can get them edited up in time!

Swatch Test: Purple and Dark Purple Metallics

Dark Purple: What makes a dark purple rather than a purple? I don’t know. These just seemed darker. Except one (which is obvious) and I couldn’t fit anywhere. All of these polishes have problems of their own however!

From pinky to pointer:
~ Pinky: Sinful Colors – Let’s Talk
~ Ring: Zoya – Delaney
~ Middle: OPI – Ink
~ Ring: Revlon – Wild Violets


So. Delaney took three coats while the rest took two, and obviously does not fit. I don’t like this polish even thought I don’t own any dupes, so it is a goner! For the other three, it is a bit more difficult. I love the color of Talk, but the purple is sooo vibrant that any time I try to do nail art over it, the purple bleeds through (I know it looks blue here, I swear it is a purple). I can put down two coats of top coat and use a metallic silver and the silver will still turn purple! Violets is a very pretty polish which I would love to use more (just look at that hidden shimmer) but it SMELLS. I don’t know why anyone puts scents in their polish, if I wanted to wear perfume I would! Ugh. So awesome color but it smells like terrible fake flowers. Ink I really like, I am just sad that the pink-purple shimmer that is so evident in the bottle is not as clear on the nails. Either way, I am ditching Delaney and keeping the rest, although I want to replace Violets with a similar color that doesn’t have a smell! Pooh to you, Revlon.


Purple Metallics: I love metallics, and in case the number of polishes shown today didn’t make it clear, I love purple metallics. There is just something about the shimmer in purple (be it red or blue leaning) that is so darn pretty! That said, I know one I am parting with!

From pinky to thumb:
~ Pinky: Zoya – Iris
~ Ring: Zoya – Isadora
~ Middle: Zoya – Giada
~ Pointer: OPI – Feel the Chemis-tree
~ Thumb: Zoya – Valerie


One of these things is not like the others…and it’s the OPI. There just isn’t as much depth to Chemis-tree as there is to the Zoyas! And wow are all the Zoyas beautiful. I had thought that Iris would be a dupe for Isadora, but even with top coat (Iris is a matte), it is much lighter. Giada and Valerie are still my favorites, but I love them all! All 5 polishes covered easily in 2 thin coats, and this is obviously shown with top coat since Iris is shiny. I think I am going to get rid of Chemis-tree, it is the same shade as Valerie with the same shimmer…but I love the coarser glitter in Valerie while Chemis-tree just looks grey and muted with the fine glitter. Voila!

Sorry about the one-photo-per-swatch today, I ran out of time and honestly the photos in my lightbox didn’t look great for these! I need better lights. Also, I have begun packing to move to St Louis, so if I stop posing regularly it’s because moving has taken over my life! Also…this is my final swatch test post! It is back to nail art on Monday 🙂

Swatch Test: Mauve Nudes and Pastel Pinks

Mauve Nudes: I don’t know why I compared these exact colors. I guess I wanted to get a sense of how purple/grey each was? No dupes here!


From pinky to thumb:
~ Pinky: Zoya – Chantal
~ Ringe: Essense – I Nude It
~ Middle: CND – Cashmere Wrap
~ Pointer: KBShimmer – Caught on Tape
~ Thumb: Zoya – Rue


Every single polish took three thin coats, but all applied well. In terms of colors, Chantal is the most yellow-leaning, while Nude is the palest by far but also leans a bit yellow-pink. Cashmere, Tape, and Rue are almost a gradient of pastel mauve to true mauve. I mostly wanted to reassure myself that Tape and Cashmere weren’t dupes for each other or anything else, and they aren’t! I also quite like both of them, even if they are boring colors!


Pastel Pinks: So, I wanted to compare my pale pinks and my pale pink shimmer/frosts. Mostly the frosts if I’m being honest! No dupes here, but some of the colors are downright ugly! I also re-used Tape (from above) to compare a pale mauve to a pale pink.


From pinky to thumb:
~ Pinky: ULTA – Baby Doll
~ Ring: KBShimmer – Caught on Tape
~ Middle: OPI – The Color that Keeps on Giving
~ Ring: ULTA – Freshwater Pearl
~ Thumb: Wet n’ Wild – Private Viewing


All the polishes took 3 coats except Tape, which took two (I guess I used thicker coats). For the cremes, Doll is more of a true pastel pink than Tape, and is also a bit paler. Private is its own thing and I should have known I didn’t own any dupes! I hate how it looks of me, but it is a useful skin tone color for nail art. For the shimmers, Pearl is more of a nude frost and Giving is a true pink frost. They are actually quite different…and unsurprisingly I like Peal a lot better! I can see Giving coming in useful….if and only if (hah I just tried to write iff which means the same thing but in python, whoops) someone tells me I need to wear a baby pink shimmer to a wedding. I don’t think that will happen, so away it goes!

Swatch Test: Teal Glitters

Today’s post is going to be a bit short, because I am running low on time! I graduate on Sunday, so my family and my husband’s family are coming into town this weekend. Running rampant. We also had to cannibalize half of my ‘nail art studio’ (aka our third bedroom which has been used solely for nail art for the past 4 years) to store a metric ton of wedding gifts that are still in their boxes. Fine china and crystal glasses are overrated!!!


Anyway, this leads me to today. This is a short post comparing one of my favorite nail polish families, the teal glitters! Spoilers: I love them all and will be keeping them all. I also hope that the post I have prepared for Monday actually gets edited in time…there is a non-zero chance that with all the hubbub this weekend I just won’t have time to edit the nail photos! But we shall see.


From pinky to thumb:
~ Pinky: A England – Saint George
~ Ring: Julie G – Mermaid’s Tale
~ Middle: ILNP – Party Favor
~ Pointer: LA Girl – Teal Dimension
~ Thumb: Forumla X – Outburst


A England polishes are amazing because of how opaque they are: this is ONE coat of St George. Mermaid and Dimension both required two coats, while Outburst and Party Favor both needed three. That said, I think Party has become my go-to color for my toenails. It has been on there for a month and counting and I love it! Comparing these 5 polishes, Outburst is clearly a gitterbomb polish, but is not super opaque on it’s own. Dimension is much darker than the others and has holo shards rather than glitters. Favor and Mermaid are not too dissimilar, but Favor has a shimmer to it and a bit of a dark blue shift that Mermaid lacks, while Mermaid is just SWIMMING with glitter. George is just a beautiful one-coater in dark teal, with a subtle holo finish that mostly looks like shimmer. Ergo, keeping them all! Happy Friday!

Swatch Test: Light Blues and Pastel Teals

Light blues: I should start by saint that hate light blue polish. I kept thinking as I was laying out these polishes “why do I never wear any of these?” I feel like for all of my other swatch tests (and there will be quite a few more) there were a couple polishes I gravitated towards for base colors or nail art, and with this set of blue there was nothing that I found exciting. To be fair, if I need a pastel blue I grab Zoya Blu and if I need a medium blue I grab one of my other three blue Zoya cremes…so it is really only the range between pastel and medium blue where I have this problem.


From pinky to pointer:
~ Pinky: Sally Hansen – Breezy Blue
~ Ring: Essie – Rock the Boat
~ Middle: Sinful Colors – Cinderella
~ Pointer: KBShimmer – I’d Rather be with Blue


While swatching, I realized WHY I hate using these shades of blue. None of them are opaque enough! Ugh. Breezy took three THICK coats and even so was barely opaque. Cinderella was legitimately still see-through where my free edge is and this was with three thick coats. Boat only took three regular coats but is a bit thicker than I would like as a polish, and Rather is both a bit thick and dries matte (which is why these swatch photos do not have top coat). In summary, all of these polishes took three coats, and Breezy and Cinderella were still not quite opaque at three thick coats. That said, I do love the pink shimmer in Cinderella (I would believe this polish to be the color of glass slippers), and the slightly grey finish to Boat. I cannot stand the subtle frost in Breezy, and I am probably just getting rid of this polish since I have Blu which I know I love.


Pastel teals: I own three very very similar pastel teal polishes because unlike the blues, I love pastel teal! It is such a pretty soft color. I basically wanted a pale teal and a pale green…but a pale green looks much like a pale teal! The three of these (minus my pinky of course) ended up being very close in color, but not quite dupes!


From pinky to pointer:
~ Pinky: Serum No. 5 – Jaded
~ Ring: Zoya – Tiana
~ Middle: Glitter Gal – No Worries
~ Pointer: Maybelline – Green with Envy


The holo polish, Jaded, took only two thin coats, the rest were three. Worries was slightly more jelly-like than the other two, and so I used thicker coats, but it dried quickly so overall the finishes were the same. In terms of comparisons, Tiana is the palest of the three, while Worries is the closest to green rather than teal. Envy is slightly more blue and slightly brighter than Tiana, but they are very close! It does have a better formula (thinner but just as pigmented). I bought Worries and Tiana when I ran out of my first bottle of Envy (this is my third, I think) and since I use pastels a lot I just kept all three. I don’t honestly think I need them all, but I think I might keep them anyway? Tiana is the one that I could part with most easily, as Worries is more green and Envy does have the best finish! I just threw Jaded in since the base color is the same, but wheeee holo!

Swatch Test: Dark Metallic Blues

Another day for nail art! Kinda. This is another one that I want to repeat over just one color, likely a dark color. In terms of the polishes I chose to swatch, all but my pinky look really darn close in the bottle! That said, in the bottle, the shimmer in this polish is very strong and I always forget that doesn’t translate onto the nail! It looks like it COULD be a medium blue :-p


From pinky to thumb:
~ Pinky: OPI – Yoga-ta Get This Blue
~ Ring: Zoya – Estelle
~ Middle: Zoya – Tart
~ Pointer: Sally Hansen – Blue My Mind
~ Thumb: Nicole by OPI – A Lit-Teal Bit of Love


All polishes took three coats to be opaque, other than Yoga which only took two. When swatching these, I found a new favorite! I had forgotten about the Sally Hansen and it is beautiful! Possibly my favorite even if it is the least metallic. Estelle is the most metallic, but actually ends up looking streaky. I think I’ll stick with Tart, now I just need to decide if I want to get rid of Estelle all together or keep both her and Tart! Decisions, decisions.


All that said, I actually really hate Toga and Lit-Teal just for the names. Puns are cute, but not when you turn them into multi word hyphenated messes! Just for that (and because I seldom wear polishes that are nothing BUT glitter) I am going to part ways with Lit-Teal. I just hate typing it, and I never wear it!


For my design, I just double stamped with the same pattern…which looks amazing over the darker blues and kinda fades away over the lighter ones. I used plate BP – L003 and stamped with Zoya Yummy and then Color Club Over the Moon. Hope you enjoyed!

Swatch Test: Purple/Gold Multichromes and Dark Red Glitters

Purple/Gold Multichromes: Basically, there are two “families” of multichromes here, the red-gold-green type and the indigo-fuschia-gold type. And of course, one holo of the red to green variety because holos are awesome so why not!


Pinky to thumb:
~ Pinky: Born Pretty – 212 (over black creme)
~ Ring: ILNP – Greatness
~ Middle: ILNP – Undenied
~ Pointer: ILNP – Tilted
~ Thumb: Enchanted Polish – I am the Walrus


All 5 polishes took three coats, although Undenied could likely have been opaque at two. The contrasts are interesting. Tilted is a bit more sheer and so you get more of the shift (it goes indigo to green through magenta and orange) but the shift only shows up at a more dramatic angle…most of the time it really is just a purple. Undenied only goes indigo to magenta and is a darker color, but the shift to the magenta happens at a less sharp angle so you can really see the shift easily. I don’t know which I like better, but I am parting with one of them!


212 and Greatness are kinda similar, Greatness starts red and goes to orange and gold, while 212 really starts orange-red and goes to gold. 212 is much less impressive, but does have the benefit of really looking like fall leaves! Walrus has almost the exact shift of Greatness, but obviously has scattered holo to it.


Dark Red Glitters: So this was a bit of a pain, because I again wanted to get rid of a few and I don’t know what to do! The colors I thought I would dislike in hindsight are some of the prettier ones!


From pinky to pointer (my thumb was also Blaze, so I didn’t show it here):
~ Pinky: Shimmer Polish – Eva
~ Ring: Zoya – Blaze
~ Middle: Pure Ice – All Nighter
~ Pointer: Zoya – India


So, both Zoyas (Blaze and India) were two-coaters, Eva and Nighter were three. I like Nighter more than I remember! It is surprisingly juicy. Despite sharing a name, I still hate Eva. She is a pain in the butt to remove since the polish is 100% glitter, does not cover evenly, and honestly still shows some nail line at 3 coats. I want to keep the polish because it shares my name, but I am also never likely to use it again! Maybe I can try and make dragon eggs out of it. I don’t know. Ugh.I am definitely keeping India and Nighter. I should keep Blaze as it was one of my very first Zoyas (I got Blaze, Storm, and Ziv in one of the New Years sales back in 2012), even if calling it a scattered holo now makes me laugh. It is barely a holo at all! Indie polishes are awesome for holo 🙂 This week, I think I have only decided to get rid of 3 polishes, I am far below what I was aiming for!

Swatch Test: Deep Purple Cremes and Dark Purple Holos

Deep Purple Cremes: How are “deep” purple cremes different from “dark” purple cremes? I don’t know, Maybe the other post is more medium purples? Either way, these are the other purple cremes that I own, which to me seemed like a different grouping. Really, these are the blue-leaning dark purples and Monday had the red-leaning purples.


From thumb to pinky:
~ Thumb: L’Oreal – Paparazzi Pleaser
~ Pointer: Formula X – Ignition
~ Middle: Zoya – Landon
~ Ring: Zoya – Monica
~ Pinky: Station – Happy Wine-y People


Three of the 5 polishes were two coats, except Wine-y and Paparazzi, which were three. Wine-y and Monica are almost dupes, if you ignore the fact that Monica has a much much better formula! None of the others are remotely similar, other than being purple. Paprazzi is more of a blurple anyway! I think it is safe to part with Wine-y.


Dark Purple Holos: I was hoping that most of these would look like each other and I would be left with 2-3 polishes total, but they are all so different! Ugh. And yet, so pretty.


From pinky to thumb:
~ Pinky: LA Girl – Purple Effect
~ Ring: ILNP – Zoe
~ Middle: A England – Crown of Thistles
~ Pointer: Cupcake Polish – Berry Good Looking
~ Thumb: Gothic Gala – Vallis Sanguine


For density, Effect and Zoe both took three coats, the others were all opaque at two. In terms of the dark scattered holos, Effect is darker than Zoe, and Zoe has visible shards rather than just glitters, with the addition of some really pretty shimmer. I think I need to keep both! For the linear purple holos, Crown is more of a shimmer than a holo, but leans more blue than the others and has absolutely perfect application, Berry remains a freaking rainbow (still one of the polishes that I gasp at when I put it on) but has actually turned more red since I got it? I still love it. Vallis is prettier and more holo than I remember but I still hate the bottle shape with its long pointy top! I was hoping to part with Vallis but it is such an interesting unique red-purple holo shade that I think I need to keep it and actually use it…eventually.

Swatch Test: Dark Purple Cremes

I need to get rid of some polish. Desperately. I am moving in a few short weeks (eeeeek!) and my polish racks are simply overflowing. I suppose I could buy more racks, but that seems wrong. I think it is time to part with some of my polish!


The two sets of colors that I seem to have the most of are nudes and purples. This week, I am starting with the purples. Today, the dark purple cremes. Going into this, I assumed I had two sets of dupes (two medium dark purples and two purple-reds) but as it turns out they are all unique! And now I am yet again conflicted.


What you see here are two coats of each polish. From thumb to pinky we have:
~ OPI – Malaga Wine
~ Zoya – Veronica
~ Zoya – Margo
~ Forumla X – Ignition
~ Sinful Colors – Fig


So. Fig has some shimmer to it, but honestly the polish is pretty dried up and gloopy and hard to use…and despite that, it took by far the longest to dry. I think I might be over this polish, which is sad since it was my very first purple! In the bottle, Ignition and Margo look identical, but while Ignition dried true-to-color, Margo dried much darker than the bottle color and so they are quite different! Ignition also leans more blue while Margo leans red. Veronica is the same saturation as Margo, but has a bit more red in it, and Malaga Wine takes that red shade one step further while still being more of a burgundy/purple than a true red. I don’t think I need both Malaga Wine and Veronica, but I can’t make myself part with either! Ugh.


I decided, of course, to do some nail art over my swatch ombre. I wanted to mostly cover up the differences in color, and as it turns out I failed completely at that! But I love the design I used (and will need to use it again at some point over a consistent colored background). The stamp is from Around the World 2 plate BM – XL158. The gold polish is Go for Gold by Sally Hansen, and the black is, as always, Black on Black by Sinful Colors.


Not maybe the most exciting post, but it needed to be done! As stated above the rest of this week will be just comparison posts (I figured out quickly that nail art over all different color nails just looks silly, so the nail art corresponding to each post will be shown later). This week is purples (with a little red), next week is blues and teal, and the last week of swatches will be nudes and the rest of the purples. SO MANY PURPLES OMG. Hope this was somewhat informative! If you want a particular polish comparison feel free to ask, if I have it I’ll throw it on!

Top 10 Polishes of 2016

Hello! I was looking through my stats for this past year trying to figure out what I wanted to post for my top nail art…and it looks like fewer and fewer people are actually reading this. I don’t know if that’s due to people using RSS feeds of various types (I like the bloglovin’ layout better than wordpress) but still. Sad! Doesn’t mean I’m going to stop blogging though. Even if two of my favorite bloggers just left 😦

ANYWAY favorite polishes. I got ~50 new polishes this year, so I don’t actually have that many to choose from…but this was pretty easy. Most of them jumped out at me. One polish that made the top 10 I forgot to actually show you guys (ooooops) so I’ll be on next years top 10 I guess! That being said, if you want to get it now while it is still around, for honorable mention (aka I haven’t edited the photos yet but its a great polish) go look at Shadow on the Moon by Emily de Molly.

Top 10 Polishes of 2016 (many actually released in 2015)

1) Enchanted Polish – Congratulations…I think this is self explanatory


2) Emily de Molly – Crystal Crown…probably one of my most-worn polishes this year. It is great for work, elegant occasions, and just generally awesome. It is also super pretty.

3) Bow Polish – Thermal Top Coat (black)…also for obvious reasons. I can see this featuring a LOT in my nail art in the future!

4) ILNP – Clockwork…this is almost a cop-out since I put Fame on last years top 10, but I really REALLY love these polishes, and Clockwork is stunning!

5) Emily de Molly – Open Season…this is the only glitterbomb (well, with larger glitters) on this years list. I got fewer of this type of polish this year, but of the ones I bought this was hands-down my favorite. It is rich and stunning.

6) A England – Briarwood…I more than doubled my A England stash this year, and of the 5 new polishes I got, this was the coolest. I don’t usually go for browns, but the rich shimmer and the holo finish made this easily one of my favorite new acquisitions this year!

7) Cupcake Polish – Berry Good Looking…this is almost cheating. Last year, almost every top 10 list I saw contained this polish, and I decided that if that many people loved it, then I needed to get it. I am so glad I did. I don’t own anything that is this ridiculously color saturated and holographic. It is awesome.

8) Nails Inc – Regents Place…the only creme on the list this year is NOT a Zoya polish! Most of my Zoyas were bought over the black Friday sale and I haven’t worn most of them…but even so I have not been stunned by their color choices this year. I got this particular polish on the clearance rack at ULTA and the color is just perfect!

9) Emily de Molly – Stockpile…I might have a problem with how many Emily de Molly polishes I buy. Seriously. This is the third one on this list! Although that’s mostly Hayley’s fault for making perfect polishes. This is basically Crystal Crown’s grown up older sister. I love it but it is NOT subtle!

10) Powder Perfect – Microcosm…this polish has been sadly discontinued, but it was great while it lasted! I had trouble describing it when I first saw it, and this hasn’t changed. This polish is mind-blowingly complicated, and not for the faint of heart. I don’t own anything else like it, and it should be overly complicated but somehow works. It makes my top 10 for this year!

And that’s all! What have I missed? Any new polishes this past year that I absolutely need to buy?

Top 10 Polishes of 2015

Now, I’ll be the first to admit this list is skewed. I didn’t buy many new polishes this year. Polishes that I DID buy tended to be on sale (and thus are likely old polishes rather than brand new ones). Additionally, about 70% of the initial list would have been Mentality polishes, which are clearly no longer in the running. So anyway, here are 10 really good polishes, and two honorable mentions.

My very favorite polish of the year: Giada by Zoya. There is something about this metallic purple that just captivates me. I have both darker and lighter shades of purple, but I find myself drawn to this one over and over again! I actually bought half of Zoya’s fall collection, but this was the only polish that made the list.


#2 and #3 are both wonderful gold polishes. For some reason, I was more of a gold-nail person than a silver one this year. My second favorite polish from this year is actually also a 2015 release, ILNP Fame. A super sparkly pale gold holo glitter liberally sprinkled with gold flakes. It is stunning.


#3 is also a gold holo glitter. Unlike Fame (the #2), Irresistivel by Jade is a more rose-toned gold that almost looks like a sparkly nude in low lights. In bright lights it glows like rainbows!


#4 Is the last of the truly “new” polishes on the list. It is another ILNP, a muted purple taupe called Long Walks. Long Walks also has holo shimmer, gold flakes, and a subtle pink flash. I got it as a polish to wear to work, but ended up loving it more than I expected to.


#5 is another Zoya polish, but sadly this one is discontinued. Veruschka is a fantastic dark green matte polish, that dries to a true matte finish. Moreover, when topcoat is added the green turns metallic and slightly shimmery. I absolutely love it. Sadly, Veruschka was replaced by the slightly lighter green semi-matte Honor this year, but you can still find it at other non-Zoya retailers if you want it.


#6 is another color we have already seen, the third purple on this list! Also the third Zoya and another older polish, although this one is still available through Zoya. The color is called Monica, and is a very dark blue-leaning purple. I have used this polish at least 5 times since I bought it…which is actually really impressive given that the polish is not a nude, black, gold, or silver.


# 7 begins the super glittery portion of this year’s top 10 list. My very favorite of the new polishes I bought in this category was technically bought late in 2014 and was released in 2013, but if you don’t own it and you like glitters you need to get it. Monet’s Garden by Emily de Molly is a mix of glitter sizes, shapes, and colors in a green-teal jelly base. It is shockingly pretty.


#8 is yet another glitter! This one is actually a Sephora X polish that I got in the sale bin (so I don’t know if it is still available) called Outburst. Outburst is basically just a mix of holo glitter hexes suspended in a royal blue jelly, but it looks fantastic.


#9 is actually a polish I got on sale from KBShimmer which they no longer sell…but I’m sure you can find it if you want it! It’s called Falling for Hue, and is basically the most Valentine’s Day polish ever created. It has pink, purple, and red glitters of various sizes in a white crelly base.


#10 was a bit of a hard decision, between two Zoyas from the same collection. I settled on India, an dark red polish with tons of gold shimmer. The second choice was Yuna, a blue-leaning-grey with larger gold glitters. Ultimately, I prefer red over grey, so I had to select India!


Runner up #1 is a pale minty green creme. I own three almost identical colors (I should do a comparison post) but of the three of them, this is the one I keep reaching for. It is called No Worries by Glitter Gal (and has a much better formula than the almost-identical Tiana by Zoya, and is slightly more green-leaning than Green with Envy by Maybelline).


Runner up #2 was a bit of a surprise to me, as I was going through my photos. I don’t tend to like girly colors, much less pale pinks! But here we are…I actually really enjoyed wearing Freshwater Pearl by ULTA. If you need a very subtle pink color, I recommend it. Go figure!


That’s all! What were you favorite polishes this year? Are there any that I absolutely need to buy?


Top 10 Polishes of 2014

So, I have put together another top 10 list! These are polishes that I got my hands on this year (which is to say some of them are older) which I absolutely adore. I think all of them can still be found SOMEWHERE at least! Most of them are complicated polishes (glitters, crazy finishes, that kinda thing) because very few simple colors are awesome enough to make this list. There are two honorable mentions though, just because I used them so darn much!

Honorable 1: Essie – Penny Talk. This pink-gold metallic polish has been my go-to gold for a while, and I love it.

Honorable 2: Color Club – Harp on It. While this did not make my top 10, everyone who has ever come over to play with nail polish has wanted to use it, and that makes it special :-p

THE TOP 10 OF 2014 (according to flightofwhimsy): If you click on the name of the polish, it will link you back to the post where I reviewed the polish. All of these are easy to work with and I love them!

#10: Mentality – Detonate


#9: Sally Hansen – Liquid Gold (I know this polish shows all your nails flaws, but I just can’t get over how awesome it is. I have used it for nail art repeatedly as well)


#8: Femme Fatale – Mr. Pinchy (the only holo to make the list)


#7: Mentality – Pozzolana (the only matte on the list)


#6: Cult Nails – In a Trance


#5: piCture pOlish – Aurora



#4: ILNP – Masquerade


#3: Zoya – Chantal (the only creme on the list)


#2: KBShimmer – Green Hex and Glam


#1: Emily de Molly – Turbulence (seriously, just give Llarowe your money and buy this polish)


So yes…dense on the glitterbombs. And I love it!

Mentality: Textured Earth Tones Collection

I have been putting off posting this for almost two weeks just due to the sheer number of photos I had to put together. But, without further ado *drumroll* I present swatches of the complete Textured Earth Tones collection by Mentality. All of these polishes were provided to me for review. Read on for swatches, thoughts, and my picks (at the end).


I am going to go in some odd sort of reverse rainbow which makes sense to me. This means I am starting with the white in the collection, Spackle. Spackle is a fun polish, a soft white with a faint shimmer that almost looks golden in direct light. It took two coats to be opaque, and (as with every other polish it this collection) dried very fast but was prone to pulling and bald spots if you didn’t work quickly. It took me about two tries to figure out how to apply polish from this collection, but once I got it everything went well!


Like the others in this collection, Spackle is matte and slightly textured. I like it.


Up next is Pozzolana, a beautiful deep grey that almost passes for pewter. I love love love this polish. Deep, sophisticated, and gritty without being harsh. Pozzolana took two coats to be opaque, and needed to be applied fast to avoid pulling. She was actually the first of the Earth Tone polishes that I tried, hence some of the visible lines on my pinky. She shows the texture a bit more than some of the other polishes, due to the almost metallic finish.


Pozzolana was very easy to control; I think I had next-to-no clean up with this!


The third polish is black, Asphalt. A very nice, simple, black slightly textured matte polish. No complaints. Went on well, dried fast. Need to be careful not to overwork. I did a comparison post here showing the difference between black creme, matte, textured matte, and true textured if you are curious.



Onto the colors! Up first is the purple, Yi Xin. The top picture is color-accurate…the bottom picture is a prime example of my camera not being able to handle purple. Yi Xin is a medium-light purple with very strong grey overtones. Honestly, when she isn’t with the rest of the collection, I sometimes forget that Yi Xin is purple and not grey. Applied same as the other polishes in the collection.



Kaolin is the blue Textured Earth Tone polish, and she might be one of the most vibrant colors in the collection. A nice true blue with just a hint of grey, slight shimmer/metallic finish that shows off the texture nicely but is also a bit prone to brush strokes. I like this color!



There were only a few disappointments for me, an Illite, the green polish, is one of them. This wa probably the polish I was most excited to play with when it arrived…it almost looks like a green/gold duochrome in the bottle! Unfortunately,  it fell flat for me on the nail. Illite took three coats to be opaque, and was a bit gloopier (technical term) than the others in the collection. It also just looked a bit…thin. I bet it would look great on darker skin, but I confess myself saddened by this polish. It looked so awesome in the bottle!



In contrast, Loess blew my mind. I don’t tend to go for yellow polishes, but I thought Loess was awesome. This polish is a bright golden yellow with hints of a metallic sheen. She had no issues with streakiness unlike some of the other more metallic polishes, but still managed to show off the textured finish! Opaque in two thin coats.



The other gold-ish polish is Arriccio. She is Loess’ nude little sister (that sounded less dirty in my head). Somewhere between a yellow and a nude, Arriccio is pretty but slightly confusing. She has a great finish (two coats, minimal streaking) but the color just didn’t sit right with me. Not enough yellow to be a yellow, but too much yellow and orange to really register as a nude.



Terracotta is a true orange. This color just screams “fall” to me, and I love it! Opaque in two thin coats, it was one of the more densely pigmented polishes in the collection. It also had more of the large textured bits than some of the other polishes, but I still love it. It is almost a copper color, and is more creme than metallic (although it does still have some shimmer to it).



The last three polishes are all pinks: a very pale pink, a light pink, and a regular pink. Lightest first! Gesso is a very very pale pink nude, almost a white. Very soft and delicate, she is probably the most feminine polish in the collection. I could see wearing her to a wedding. She also has a nice glow-from-within that sets her apart from the others, as well as being slightly less textured. Opaque in two coats.



Stucco is a light pink with strong grey overtones. She dries slightly more orange than I expected from the color in the bottle, and has more of the larger grittier textured bits than any other color. I think I might have gotten some unmixed pigment in mine rather than just textured bits! Oops. Pretty feminine shade, but not quite right on my admittedly reddish skin. Opaque in three thin coats, fast drying.



And we have reached the end! The last polish is a true pink, Cocciopesto. This polish also has the distinct honor of having an impossible to spell name. That being said, I like this color quite a bit! It is a pink metallic with a textured finish, hints of shimmer, and a nice shine that makes it look a bit like pink satin. It is not a dark color, but still stands out nicely as actually pink. Cocciopesto was almost opaque in one coat, but I did two. This is one of the only colors I could see my mother liking (I think that is a compliment?), the other being the almost-white Gesso.



~ * ~ * ~ * ~

My take on the collection: I like the finish on these polishes. It is a nice change from the heavily textured and gritty polishes we see from OPI, china glaze, and Zoya. I don’t really like the “mega-hex” thing that Zoya has been doing, and I far prefer the slightly textured approach that Mentality has taken! It also helps that these polishes remove like cremes, not glitters. Phew!

My top 4 polishes from this collection, in order, are Pozzolana (grey), Loess (gold), Gesso (pale pink nude), and Terracotta (copper). I also really liked Cocciopesto (true pink), Kaolin (blue), and Spackle (white). I would pass on Illite (green), and Arricio (yellow nude), unless you have darker skin.

All 12 of these polishes can be found at the Mentality store: Each is $6.75, and there is free US shipping. Go check them out!

Summer Down the Shore – Philly Loves Lacquer

I have the distinct honor today of showing you 4 polishes from Philly Loves Lacquer‘s Summer Down the Shore collection! There are two wonderful things about this collection before I even get to the polish… (1) it’s local! It’s actually made in Philly! (2) It is inspired by the beach, specifically the Jersey Shore. I love the beach. In fact, I was AT the beach (…the Jersey Shore in fact) this past weekend, so I took the opportunity to take some live-action shots of these beauties!


The Down the Shore collection consists of 8 polishes. I have 4 of them for your viewing pleasure! And in case you were curious, these photos are taken from Vetnor, looking over at Atlantic City. All polish is shown over Philly Loves Lacquer’s base coat, with corresponding top coat where noted (review of those two coming when I have had a chance to wear them longer!)


Wildwoods by the Sea – “Dark sea foam scattered holo”
This is my favorite from the collection. Of course, I am a sucker for teals…and this is just a stunning polish. The scattered holo looks more like beautiful subtle silver shimmer to me, but it did give rainbow glints in direct sunlight. Two coats shown here without top coat. It dries to a semi-matte finish.


With top coat, the polish is wonderfully shiny! To my eyes, the teal became a bit brighter. Regardless, this polish dries incredibly fast.



I should note, this polish is best used quickly. It dries fast, so if you try to work it around your nail slowly, it will clump. I found it went on beautifully with two fast thin coats, but if you like to paint slooooowly, this might be difficult. It was very easy to control, and the polish brush is short and perfectly sized. Seriously, I love the brush that came with this polish! Perfect ratio of flexibility to hardness. When I use up the polish, I am keeping the bottle just to have the brush.


On The Way To Cape May – “Bright strawberry jelly with red and silver shimmer”
I was surprised by how much I liked this polish. I’m not usually a fan of jellies, and I own too many red polishes already. That being said, this polish managed to be both unique and fun!



This polish took 4 coats to cover my nail line. Keep in mind that my nails are very long, and that this is a true jelly. However, I was using very thin coats and the dry time was incredibly fast (as soon as I finished the hand I could go back and paint the next coat). Thus, given the fast dry time, I didn’t actually spend any longer putting down polish than I usually do! The fun part about this (to me) is going to be using it for art. Which I did. And you shall see in early June what wonderful things can be done with a red glitter jelly!


Love Those Wildwood Days – “Sky blue scattered holo”
Beautiful color. Truly a sky blue, with subtle holo shimmer (mostly looks like silver shimmer). Two easy coats, same application as Wildwoods by the Sea.




Dried quickly, easy to work with. Love. If you don’t already own a sky blue polish with glittery bits, this is a good one to pick!


Watch The Tram Car Please – “Bright yellow cruelly with mix of matte blue and neon blue glitters”
This polish. What to say. It went on easily, and I did not have to fish for glitters (even the stars came out evenly). I spotted hexes, stars, shards, bar, and just random glittery goodness. I like the combination of neon yellow + teal blue. Unfortunately, I do not like yellow…so this polish just isn’t quite my thing.



Shown here is three coats (which you need to cover the nail line). With one coat of top coat, the polish was still slightly bumpy. Not enough to be annoying, but if you are a fan of completely smooth nails, you will need two coats of top coat.

This collection goes on sale in June! So head over to Philly Loves Lacquer if you are interested. To see other blogger swatches (and the four remaining polishes in the collection) check out the PLL Facebook page.


My advice: get Wildwoods by the Sea, it is BEAUTIFUL. Love Those Wildwood Days is a great polish if you don’t own a sky blue with glitter (especially given the fast dry time), and On The Way To Cape May is just a fantastically fun polish although it does take 4 coats.

*Polishes sent for review, all opinions are my own

a london year

[or more accurately: the london years]


Un blog de nailista, adepte de nail art tendance, passionnée de photos, et de jolis bijoux. Les dernieres modes en matière de vernis à ongles sont scrutées et analysées, les teintes passées au crible, et en prime des tutos super faciles à réaliser vous sont proposés... Bref, la féminité s'invite jusqu'au bout des ongles sur le blog de Pshiiit !

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de la couleur, un petit peu d'idée, et hop!