Friday, October 21, 2016

Milani's Old School New School Twinkle

Here's another oldie from the 2014 Photo Trove.

Milani Lavender Twinkle

Four coats, no top coat.

Beautiful lavender packed with blue shimmer that twinkles a pretty bright blue.

Right on task with all the "alternative color" shimmers that are populating the mainstream and indie breadbasket. Well, more of an indie trend, but China Glaze has done right by this very classic finish.

I have a ton of oldies that are mix and match and this is just another one to love.

This is an old Dollar Tree find. Though it is a four coater, it's a wholly unique polish in my collection, so it gets a pass. I could emulate it with a topper over a lavender, but somehow it stands alone. Stalwart. Noble. Very beautiful. A female action figure of a polish.

My lights bring up the blue shimmer. It's such a delicate combination.

I couldn't find it online, so I am not sure if it's just gone. If you are an "old school" Milani fan, it might pop up every now and then. You just never know. I often see random things I think I'll never find then suddenly: boom drops in my lap.

Thank you for reading my little nail polish journal!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Red Glass Fleck Swatch Fest

That trove of 2014 photos yielded a ton of colors I was sure I'd swatched. Finding these photos has been fun.

Here are a pack of jelly based glass fleck reds to share.


OPI Wing It!

From OPI's Summer Flutter collection of around 2010, it is a beautiful bright cherry red packed with red, amber and purple glass fleck. It shifts from pinkish red, to orange red, depending on the light.

I found mine originally when it came out through an online etailer. The good news is that it's still floating around online, though not on OPI's site itself.

The mix of colors is splendid.

It's a three coater, with vaguely visible nail line, but truly a beautiful creation by OPI.

China Glaze Cherry Pie

From China Glaze's 2009 Summer Days collection, this is a beautiful red on red glass fleck in jelly base.
More of a sheer polish, though I have three coats, it's bright and fresh like a perfect summer day.
Still available online, but at a fairly HTF price point.

I won't lie, I miss that China Glaze used to put together whole collections of one type of finish. This was part of one such collection.

Borghese Colosseo Crimson

Now pretty much defunct in the nail polish realm, Borghese three out some unique shades.
This is a fairly generic red jelly packed to the rafters with gold glass fleck.

Three coats and scant visible nail line.

The red is bright, and it covers the glass fleck very well. Quite affordable on eBay at this writing.

Sephora Go With The Flow-er

Bright red with a generous, but scattered array of glass fleck in purple, amber and red. Lovely and almost full coverage at three coats.

I like the substantial SOPI bottles, but they don't grab my attention for some reason when I am reaching for a polish.

I found mine at the Big Lots! near me, since Sephora by OPI was phased out a few years ago and replaced by Formula X. Unable to find it online, it might show up, though I would opt for Wing It! should you be wanting this kind of polish since they have a lot of the same backbone with the amber, purple, and red glass fleck.

Nicole By OPI Fuchsia Wife

Not dissimilar to OPI Wing It!, but much more sheer and really more of a topper than anything else. Although not to discount it's capabilities as a topper. It can rock on its own dime admirably. Personally I like it a lot. I toss it over red and purple as well as any think vampy.

Not impossible to find, either. I will say this whole collection did have a lot of cool stuff that really never surprises me from Nicole by OPI. People hate on the bottles, but they do a nice job of keeping their head above water in a competitive drug store environment. I've got a lot of NOPIs and I have very few that give me a problem.

Milani Just Peachy

Perhaps the most obscure of the bunch, but still online for the having.

Found at the Dollar Tree, this one is loaded with silvery color changing glass fleck in a warm red base. In no way to I consider this "peach" at all, but really just a bright red.

The jelly red is strong and just zings. I think it, here at three coats, can stand alone and work as a topper.

This is part of the discontinued Milani as they've changed their bottles and tightened up their look into a much more modern and visually arresting one than they had in the past. I will say I've seen people comment on the look of the bottles, but I've never been too bugged by the look of a bottle if the polish inside works for me.

All right, there you have it. A bunch of zingy reds. I had tried to do a comparison, but my camera settings make my hands look red and even with access to real Photoshop, there was just no fixing any of the comparisons.

In a nutshell I'd say if you are like glass fleck, grab Wing It! if you like cool toned and Cherry Pie if you are warm toned, or the Milani (eBay for a song, btw).

Thank you for reading my little nail polish museum!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

More Something With Something Else

The allure of glass fleck shimmers is hard to pass up.

I recently acquired a couple that are unique in there combination of shades.

First up Nars Algonquin

Three coats, no top coat.

This is from the Nars Holiday 2014 collection. It's a rich glass fleck blue in a warm taupe that reveals a pink undertone in some light. I know nothing of the origin of this collection, but years ago when I went to NYC I went to the Algonquin. Mainly because of the early 20th century writers that favored it. I won't lie, it was pretty neat for me.

This polish thrills me. It's got enough oomph to show up really beautifully blue and then it shifts a bit purple and a bit silver, depending on the light.

Still on eBay. Nice!

OPI Next Stop...The Bikini Zone

Three coats, no top coat. A pretty little glass fleck with pops of shine that really grab the light. It is supposedly a duochrome, but really feels more like a pink glass fleck in a taupe/gray shimmer. 

I think it's subtle, but when the sunshine or a bright light hits it, it really is quite a beauty. 

This is from the Brazil collection and pretty easy to find still.

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Friday, October 14, 2016

Misa Lavender Trio

Another find from my 2014 photo stash!

Three polishes from Misa that tick the lavender box quite nicely.

Misa Shop Til You Drop

Three coats, no top coat. A soft, frosted creamy shimmer. The silvery frost brightens up a cool almost neutral lavender.

I bought this years ago through Head2Toe Beauty. While I can't figure out what Misa is up to now (a day late and a dollar short on collections, collections that lack much imagination, and so little promotion that as I see new nail polish aficionados come up in the ranks, they never even see this brand, but I digress), I do feel like they had a lot of cool nail polishes that were both ahead of the curve and positively prescient.

Meanwhile this one does push into brushstroke territory, but the color does redeem itself.

No longer on Head2Toe, but still on Misa's website!

Misa Denim and Lace

Similar to China Glaze's Anklets of Amethyst and Grape Juice, it's a polish who truly let me down.

Three coats here and it was patchy, balding, and just plain sheer.

It's available at Misa's website and appears to be - perhaps - reformulated to look more like a taupe based purple with shimmer and glass fleck. I can see why it's been changed up, it just won't apply nicely.

I did try it over a dark purple and it was really just a patchy, balding mess. So, while it's sheer, it's not really a topper. Can't win them all.

Russian Sage

Akin to Shop Til You Drop in that it's a creamy shimmer but that's where the resemblence ends with a strong violet punch that shifts from pink to blue.

Les demure, much more luminous. A favorite of mine, that's for sure.

Still on the Misa's website, good job, Misa!

Here's a comparison:

I have to admit that Misa's Denim and Lace is not something I'd recommend, but Shop Til You Drop and Russian Sage are quite amazing.

All of these that I own are Big Three chemistry, but currently their website states that they are now 5-Free, which is great.

Thank you so much for reading my little nail polish journal!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

When Rare Is Not So Rare Anymore

Back in 2009 OPI came out with a pretty epic collection, Holiday Wishes, that set a lot of nail polish fans in a lather over several of the polishes.

Sapphire in the Snow was one stand out, a deep, vamped out blurple.

It's a gorgeous polish. Here are three coats with no top coat.

This polish has become a classic favorite and still garners quite a price on eBay at this writing. It is no longer carried by OPI, so your options are limited.

Can't find it? One popular option is Essie No More Film

Left to right:
Essie NMF
Essie NMF

Personally I prefer the Essie, but dupes they are not, that's for sure.
I'd say that they have the similar blurple thing going on, but SitS is more purple leaning.
Essie No More Film is still readily available, which is good. It's even at Rite Aid and other drug stores. Win!

You could try Zoya Pinta

Left to right:
Zoya Pinta
Zoya Pinta

I find that these are super close. Pinta is a bit less dark, but not by a whole lot.
Not only is it readily available at Zoya, they frequently run sales so it's often as little as $3.50 - $5.00 per bottle. Not bad.

In more recent collections, from the Euro Centrale Vant To Bite My Neck?

Left to right:

OPI VtBmN? is somewhat more flat, perhaps a bit deeper and more violet than blurple, but it's fairly similar, though I won't call it a dupe.

I can't find this shade nor can I find the collection on the OPI website, so this must have been phased out, though it's readily available online. Nice!

Of the bunch, I have to say SitS isn't the true irreplacable dame of center stage I thought it was. I have it and (crazily enough) a back up, and it's odd that it's held such an iconic status in my collection when it has got a fair bit of stand up competition.

Of the bunch my personal favorite for the shade is Essie No More Film. The one I would not buy again would be Zoya Pinta: the formula is bit thick and unwieldy and for some reason it just isn't as hearty for wear on me. Though I will try it again with my Seche Vive gel top coat again to give it another break.

Final note: all are three coats, no top coat and I pretty much passed on clean up.

Thank you for reading my little nail polish journal!

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Who Is It?

I thought I had actually blogged this, but when I used it as a stamping polish, I realized I hadn't. This is part of the 2014 photo find.

No wonder I thought I'd blogged it, though, because I did take photos:

Finger Paints Hue Rang

Three coats, but two would have done nicely.

Part of the core line of Finger Paints through Sally Beauty, or at least was, as it appears they are phasing out some colors, and bringing on the new "thing" which is basically versions of Vinylux.

It's understandable as people like the idea of nail polish but the extras like painting and removal are kind of a drag for some. Personally I find it relaxing.

So, it looks like Hue Rang is no longer on the Sally Beauty web site, nor is it easily available on line. I know that to get mine, back in 2011 or so, I asked someone to do a custom purchase because it wasn't at my regional Sally Beauty.

I did use it as a stamping polish, too, and it does quite a good job. Very impressive. I am a little less than thrilled with the color, but that's more personal taste.

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Friday, October 7, 2016


I was going through my flash drive and found an untitled folder packed with photos. A veritable trove.

These are dated back to 2014. It was a pretty tough year and I think things were a little crazy. I will be dropping these out on my blog over the next few weeks. Kind of a nice mix up. Especially since a number of these I was so sure I'd blogged!

Here's OPI How to Jamaica Million

Three coats, no top coat.

This is from the 1996 Carribean collection, as my research shows, and a frostier thing you won't see here!

I don't know where I got it, but I no longer seem to own it. Apparently it is a super HTF black label polish that is super expensive on eBay right now. 

Don't be fooled: it must have been something that didn't impress me with its formula if I didn't keep it. I may have hidden troves of photos, but I don't have hidden bottles of polish, that's for sure.

If you love a pearl finish, this one certainly is very much the creature. It will give up each and every brushstroke with zero apologies, however.

Would I buy it again? Probably not. I kind of wish I'd kept it around for a stamping polish, though. I won't lie, I think it's very pretty and would have warranted trying to do sponging on the last layer to smooth it all out.

At this point it's gone, and I am not actively hunting it out!

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Getting The Ball Rolling

Hey Sweet People!

I took a little break since I misplaced my precious flash drive and then tried to take photos with my iPhone, but wasn't happy with the result. Plus my new job seemed to explode into a bigger one than I thought.

I've got my stuff together and I've got three purples that needed an outing.

Let's get at it!

Milani Purple Passion

Three coats, no top coat. This is an older Dollar Tree find and a fairly generic royal purple shimmer. I found the formula a little looser than too my personal taste, but not wholly unworkable.

I don't see Milani at my Dollar Tree any more, but it's pretty prevalent on eBay. Yay!

Brucci Grape Galaxy

Three coats and no top coat. A very deep grape purple glass fleck shimmer.

Not a super common brand, and I don't have much luck finding a real website. It's kind of weird. I thought they were an east coast US brand. They have had a few real gems. I thought I got this through their website, but it's now gone. Some is on Amazon and eBay.  Searches now are so peppered with retailers trying to grab anything to click you on through, it's almost a sure thing they don't have it.

Meanwhile a pretty shimmery vamp.

Impala Azul Aviador

A pretty little deep lavender that I found through an indie seller. It is a touch less blue in person, though. Three coats, no top coat.

Has more of a crelly feel to it and smells like Kleancolor, which is pretty much a no win for me.

I actually have given all of these away to a sweet person who I know will actually wear them. That is very exciting for me, because I had all these polishes for a long time and I never reached for them.

I suppose looking at it, I have a little regret over the's nice. OTOH, I have Orly Charged Up. Similar shade, better formula for me.

All right. I'm back in action and I truly thank you for reading my little nail polish journal!!!

Thursday, September 22, 2016

When You Reach September

The days grow short, but oh so mellow.

Ok, enough mixing lyrics of old standards.

Here is a great little polish from an older Essence Collection, Return to Paradise. It's from 2010 or 11 and pretty old, but I've had this little gem in my collection for a long time and wanted to share it.

Essence Back to Paradise

This is perhaps my new favorite green: dark as a vamp (here in the sun) but not blackened to the degree that "it might as well be just black nail polish" and yet, indoors it will go pretty deep.

Not able to find this online for sale, but it is not dissimilar to the new Essie Off Tropic. I will get a comparison done fairly soon. I found Off Tropic because the Essence is just not around unless I stumble onto a blog sale.

I think polishes like Nars Zulu and other deep greens are beautiful, but this is a deep pine green that pushes a little teal in the bottle, but on the nail stays beautiful pine green.

Good luck if you find it.

Formula is not a perfect one: it's rather thick, but coverage is pretty nice, it could be a two coater. Though I think if I were to reapply any time soon, I'd thin a bit, something I didn't do this time!

Have a wonderful autumn!

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Sea Glass Collection

I've seen the Pacific from both sides, east and west. I've been in it and over it, but never under it.

There are days when it is crystal blue and others where it is pale and ghost-like.

One morning, after a long drive that ended at night, I woke up at a campsite on the coast, just south of Kalaloch. I hadn't seen the Pacific for over a decade. I still remember walking over a bank of sand and there it was: wild and open and breathtaking. The wide pale beach, cobalt sky and high bright blue surf from the incoming tide. I was home.

So my homage to the sea with a sea glass collection. These are all holographic and vary from frankening existing polishes to tweaking others, to straight up mixes.

The holographic sparkle is courtesy of Spectraflair 4U. I bought a gram of 35 micron and it really went for miles and miles. 

Three coats, pale nude holo. Or, since "nude" runs the spectrum (despite what lingerie makers seem to think), I'll call this pale beige.

This is in the sunshine.

From a very old Markwin (WetnWild) polish I've had for years and years. Excellent formula and a polish I love a lot.

Here, under the lamp, it still has a good oomph.

Reminds me of the inside of a seashell.

I mixed a few things together to get this blue. I wanted to keep its personality with holo to shine on in the sun. Crisp blue sky and sparkling water.  Here it is in the sunshine.

I won't say that I captured the holo well, but this is a beautiful neutral gold, Borghese Trevi Gold, that reminded me of pale amber glass etched by the sand. I added a bit of silver to it as well as the holo.

This is Ulta Bam-blue-zled, a pretty, soft blue that was fairly sheer. Sheerness helps. I tweaked it with some other blue and some white and added the holo.

Three coats, taken in the sun.

Reminds me of a very PNW early spring day at the beach: cool, sunny, but the sun won't play very hard and wants to take a nap.

L.A. Girl Metallic Green frankened with spectraflair. A phenomenal win. Since this is a super sheer polish I have it over a dark green base.

Taken in the sun, three coats.

Reminds me of the deep woods off ShiShi beach.

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!