Sunday, December 17, 2017

Seche Buttoned Up and Some PolyGel Chat

Very unseasonal manicure, but a color I really couldn't help but reach for!

Seche Buttoned Up 

Here is a polish that does three things very well:
1) it has contrasting shimmer that doesn't get buried
2) it has a gorgeous formula (no clean up despite my best efforts to slip slop it around!
3) it shines without a top coat

It has a real changeling feel about it. It looks periwinkle in the bottle, but then it looks very lavender. The blue shimmer just works its little buns off.

I adore this polish!

I wore it for several days and didn't give me any real issues save a bit of tip wear, which is normal for me, since I seem to type with the tips of my nails. I also wore a normal top coat, an old Milani double duty. I will just say, as I've said before, top coats aren't a big thing for me because I change my nails a lot, but I've been well served by drugstore brands.

A gander at the Seche site and I see that they have dumped their round bottles and gone with a modified hourglass shape and co-opted the new "system" thing that a number of brands are espousing.

Not tried the system, and it appears they are at Sally Beauty, too. 

Ok, but here's the thing: if you want to try this brand and are planning a bigger order, check out Head2Toe Beauty: they have the old bottles (this one is from the Perfectly Poised collection) and a ton of beautiful colors. 
Old price: $3
New price: $4.95


Well, they are a salon brand and that's a normal evolution in what must be a super competitive market.

Meanwhile, there's always eBay (and there are a lot, including this one, listed)

I did try some stamping:

This is from a forgotten plate and I also need to realize that my nails are bigger and longer, so fitting patterns on is different. I have assiduously collected small patterns. The news flash is that I just need to flex some of my bigger patterns that I still have.

The color, against this Color Club Nail Art blue really goes soft pink/lavender. I had to triple check my notes to make sure that I was getting the right photo. It really changes in comparison to a strong blue.

I highly suggest picking up some Seche polish. I am always pleased with it.

I wanted to show some behind the scenes with my nails.

Here is a shot of the back and sort of a look at the "sandwich".

So you can see that I layer it over my natural nails and while shaping is still an issue, I like that my nails is there, too.

The way it looks from the front, or the longitudinal side shows how my nails have a bit of a wonky shape, but I try to balance the shape I get out of the PolyGel though it sometimes can be thick.

I was watching some videos of application and they have it very thin, compared to mine, so I might experiment with thinning it down. Though I have no issues with the thickness, I can see when I begin to layer it can get rather "chiclet" ish.

I usually spend the first night doing the fill, then a quick manicure. Then the second manicure I do add a lot of shaping and filing because the filing isn't just around the edges its over the top, along the side wall, and creating that arch shape.

I will post some application photos down the pike. 

Right now I use clear - it came in the pack I got - and I will say that I think it is fine for me, especially as my yellow nails grow out and I can really use sheer stuff and enjoy.

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!!!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Layering: New and Old

I wanted to throw some stuff together in the layering realm. Here are three that turned my head a bit.
One is totally new, one has old with new, and one has old with old.

Glam Gloriumptious over Color Club Power Play

Inspired by Roald Dahl, this limited edition set is loaded with glass fleck, flakies and some holo. It is hard not to love this baby.

I don't store it with my holos, it just doesn't give up that as much as the sweet glass fleck-edness.

Limited edition, but at this writing, on sale at Glam polish. In my opinion, a great polish o its own or layered. I think the Color Club brings brightness to this, which I enjoy.

Here's a redo of Color Club power play.

I sure love it a lot. It's got zing! Three coats here and a true classic neon.

El Corazon Kaleidoscope Night Dreams: Leo over Misa Love Bite

This is part of that El Corazone order I put in last year. Holy Cow! I need to order again!

May I just say WOW!!!!! This photo does no justice to this darling polish. It's over a vamp, Misa Love Bite and it just says Step Aside, I am HERE!
Great coverage and a blue shimmer that is so perfect: so vibrant!

This whole Night Dreams collection is still available and I need to wear more of these. The payoff is amazing: two coats over a vamp.

Here is Misa Love Bite

I mean, seriously, right? So dark. Ha. Kaleidoscope Leo just laughed in its face.

This is a three coat deep warm wine vamp. From the Misa Poisoned Passion collection, I know that I love how it's very dark, yet not cheating into the black too hard. Nice!

When I wanted to use this as a base for Leo, I thought it would swallow the pink base and leave more blue, but Kaleidoscope just worked it out.

Princessa Violet Dream over Maybelline Ultra Violet

Yes, I know. Old and blogged, but I wanted to share this because I feel like the bright base finally made a fit for this polish.

I blogged it here in September, but I just wanted to toss it out again. I know: ramshackle!

Here's Maybelline Ultra Violet alone (again...hehehe)

Slightly over saturated and less pale than it was in its earlier swatch.

There it is, a mix of old and new. I recommend the Glam (on sale!) and if you missed my big El Corazon post, check it out, it discusses how easy it was to order and I really think the payoff on these polishes is in a class alone.

I have mixed feelings about Glam, they have stunning photos, but seeing what I see in the photos has been a challenge. I have a lot of Glam polishes, but mostly holos, though their take on the ultra mix of finish/color really is quite a unique perspective and I totally respect the bleeding edge. I love Gloriumptious without reserve and it's just as stunning on the nail as in the bottle, a feat that can be hard to beat when it comes to a lot of complex finishes. I guess mixed is more like a big glass ove LOVE and a drop of "darn it!"

Of course Maybelline Ultra Violet and Color Club Power Play are findable online, just hit your search engine of choice.

Thanks so much for reading my little nail polish journal!

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Indigo Banana Duo

Now that I am wearing the Polygel and able to get some consistent length on my nails, I will be trotting out some more of the polishes that I love so much, and hoping to finally do some justice to them!

If you've read my blog, you know that over the years it's been often a case of nubs, building to longer nails, only to nub again. And again. And again. 

While perfection is distant horizon that one may enjoy during a beautiful sunset, life is for the living now and as I tighten my filing game, I am thoroughly enjoying the work Polygel does to help my nails stay long.

Back to Indigo Bananas! 

Here is a great one, Wise Up, Janet!

Can we talk?


This is two coats over Color Club Secret Rendezvous (blogged here).

It is a holo flakie that has an orchid pink base and tons of holo and lots of little flakies.

No top coat here and it's gleaming!

I love the ringed flame around my nails and the little darker purple/pink flakies.

This is a two coater, perhaps three if you don't have a base, but there is so much going on you won't get visible nail line.

I love how Secret Rendezvous brightens it up a bit. I think over a dark purple it would be a different animal. Delightful!

Next up is Indigo Montoya

A scattered linear holo in my shot, but there is a flame and it's not shy.

Two coats over a Sally Beauty polish called Nina Ultra Pro Sailor

I like the blurple quality of this navy and it's why I snapped it right up.

To me Indigo Montoya (love the nod to Princess Bride) is a delightful indigo blue that pulls both navy and purple depending on the light.

Although the two IB polishes I have up are sold out, I highly recommend checking the shop out. Just google Indigo Bananas and you will find it!

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Navy Shimmer Worth Owning

As per usual, we were basking in a warm wet autumn and them WHAM!!! Freezing cold, winds that cut into your soul, and snow.

If my luck holds, it will be the kind of winter I like: cold, dry, and light snow. If not, well, I'll be schooled by the snow and ice.

Here is a navy shimmer I have not worn, but I now think surpasses several others in my collection.

Misa A Sin Worth Committing

Three coats, two really only needed, no top coat.

The shimmer is delightful and the gloss finish works up some magic.

This is from a Misa collection from at least 8-9 years ago called Poisoned Passion. I saw it on Transdesign and probably purchased it there...with of course influence from the Scrangie blog!

Meanwhile, I can't seem to find this polish for sale, although I didn't do a thorough search, I did hit 8ty8, Head2Toe, Transdesign, and eBay, but not Amazon.

But!!! I did find it at Misa Cosmetics website! It's $7.50! So, it's not hard to find and the price is very good.

I am not sure what is up with Misa, they are super slow with collections. Every time I swatch a polish, I halfway expect the site to be dead. 

Meanwhile, if you need a blue shimmer, this is a doozy. 

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

The Unexpected Dupe

I've got a quick one: Sally Hansen Insta Dri Ruby rush and Sparitual Against the Grain.

Left to right:
Sally Hansen Insta Dri Ruby Rush
Sparitual Against The Grain
Sally Hansen Insta Dri Ruby Rush
Sparitual Against The Grain

Both are deep red wine shades, but both are so identical I really had to take notes on application.

I love the shade and think that the depth of the shimmer just makes me agog. It flames and dips into black. Gorgeous.

Against the Grain you can find on eBay, it is no longer on the Sparitual site that I can see.
Insta Dri is no longer in the Sally Hansen line up, either, so, too, eBay may be a good source.

Personally I love both, so I will say the difference my be the brush: Insta Dri brush is not for the faint hearted - or the small nail-bedded! 

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!!!

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Topper Show Stopper

I think it's hard to find the right indie at the right time. You need to trawl the social media, keep up with the indie sellers, resellers, and boutique sellers. Its imperative to keep abreast or you either miss the polishes or never even knew they existed.

Here's one you need to know exists. Especially if you are a topper lover like me.

Bees Knees House on Haunted Chill is a very amazing color shifting glass fleck loaded with every shade it seems, but set in a "blurple base" per their site.

Here it is over Sally Hansen Pacific Blue to emphasize the base shade

This reveals a strong pink shimmer, but it also has at the top of my nail, washed out by the light, a terrific aqua blue shimmer. Stunning.

I love it!

Here it is over a navy (Borghese navy, can't recall the name):

Suddenly it's all woody greens and amber with a touch of red.

Shifting into an emerald green for the gawds!!!

My camera did it no justice. It has a red on this end and a Christmas green on the other.

Here is Diamond Cosmetics Froggy:

A decent sheer jelly.  Blogged here a long time ago (I won't lie, the polygel has enabled me to enjoy polishes like this!)

Here it is with House on Haunted Chill:


The blue base doesn't really interfere the way you'd think it would, and it is easy to apply.

I wore it over navy for a week on a trip out of town and it just never gave me a bit of a hassle.

I think my photos in super strong light did wash out the more subtle tricks this polish has up its sleeves, that's for sure.

Still available at the Bees Knees Lacquer website.

If you, like me, have been keeping your toppers close to you, this new generation is a stunner.

Will note that it is sheer alone, its a worker bee over virtually anything. Even a tomato red wasn't untoward!

Thanks so much for reading my little nail polish journal!

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

A Little Purple There, A Little Purple Here...

I have some things that are in dire need of swatching, but I've been wanting to tone up the old Polygel game before I went full bore.

Getting there, and thought, I better start somewhere!

First up is Zoya Mira

Mira is a rich plum purple. Not really a red purple, but has those roots, but still, a purple nonetheless.

Three coats. 

I got this on Zoya's big annual sale (that they seem to be doing much more often), which puts Zoya cheaper than most drugstore polishes these days.

A gorgeous creme, faultless application, though I didn't wear it out to see how it wore, traditionally Zoya is not a strong wearing polish. I use a normal top coat. To clarify, when I say not strong wearing, while it doesn't chip - as it seemed to do a lot when I first started wearing it - it does rub off more easily.

Still I love this shade. Gorgeous.

Zoya Serenity

Dreamy, smokey, and luscious. If you like purple, you will like this one.
It's dowsed, but not crushed into a neutral.

So great.

Typical three coats. I won't lie, this one moved to the head of the class for me.

Color Club Pucci-licious

Blogged a million years ago, here.

A classic, bright, clear, and neon-esque (I think it's hard to get this shade into a real neon)

I've had this bottle forever, but I love it a lot. I think I had a backup that I moved on down the road.

This is topcoated, as it it will dry more matte.

Here's a comparison:

Left to right:
Zoya Mira
Zoya Serenity
Color Club Pucci-licious.

I love all three. They are not alike, although in a pinch you can do Serendipity versus Pucci-licious and be perfectly fine.

All three have been topcoated. I always have mixed feelings about doing it, but most of the time I wear a topcoat, so here I thought it more natural.

Mira and Serenity are still available on Zoya's site as is Pucci-licious.

Quick note about polygel: I am loving the strength of it and learning to be a better "filer" and making the shape the best I can do, but I notice as soon as I put the polish on I notice some sort of oddball shape issue, or curve or edge. It's almost like 3-D filing.
My hope is to do a post with application, but I want some more practice under my belt before I go there. In the meantime, I love the results, the low cost, and the ease of use.

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

p.s. all photos are taken with my iPhone. I think they are pretty accurate, but perhaps they pull a little blue. 

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Maybelline Colorama Plum Sparkle

When I first started collecting, I scored a ton of Coloramas at the Dollar tree.
Most I found a good home(s) for, but I kept a few.

Here is Maybelline Colorama Plum Sparkle:

It's a magenta shimmer with a scattered holo fine glitter running throughout.

Posted here with no top coat, which whould have smoothed out its slight texture.

Three coats, but two would be fine.

Dandy in the flash, even under the lamp it's demure smolder is a delight.

I find that the holo is super subtle, but the color and shimmer are ample payoffs.

Can still be found online, I found it with a fast search.

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Hare A Positive


It's that time of year!


Here's an oldie I've had forever, but finally got it blogged.

Hare A Positive.

Two coats over Sally Hansen Hollywood Cocktail

Hare is a berry red with silver glitter. It's an early example of indie genius for imaginative elegance. Lots of glitter, great jelly base.

Hollywood Cocktail is a deep red jelly. I wanted to support the whole blood thing!

Have a happy Hallowe'en!

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!


Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Red to Green Shifting Comparison: Clarins ILNP Liquid Euphoria

Wanted to toss out a a comparison I posted on the Makeup Alley message board and get it archived here.
Thanks for the indulgence.

Some background. It is warranted, trust me.

Back in the 90's, long before I was into nail polish, (maybe the early 00's) there began what is now known as red to green multichrome. It is a mica pigment that shifts from red into green, with a lot of time spent in a warm amber orange mode. 
When it shifts, it produces a gorgeous Christmas green and if you really push, you can get into blue. On the red side it will go to purple. It's stunning. 
It isn't a holographic, there is no flame, it just reflects a whole shade change of color, not a rainbow. It seems to have a longer range for its "rainbow" than a holo.

So there was Clarins 230, discontinued in 2008 according to my research, prior to that there was a Blue Cross Liquid Euphoria line, not sure when that one was discontinued, but it was gone by the time I got into it.

For several long dry years, there was a yearning for these pigments. They weren't around.

Then the auto paint and pigment industry became a source. I don't know the particulars, but suddenly people were mixing their own and it was kind of crazy. This was mostly started right after the spectraflair pigment burst on the holographic scene. 

Next thing indies were tossing out Clarins 230 dupes like crazy. Even Max Factor came out with one.
I grabbed a ton. Blog sales were my main avenue. It was like buying gold in a down market for me. The price of Clarins 230 stalled out, no longer a 3 figure deal, you could get it around $40 (I should have grabbed more!).

Then it seemed to be in short supply since about 2015. I never even noticed, it was the Rise of the Indies and holos/flakies/duochromes/glitter reigned supreme. Some red-green shift action mixed in with other stuff was barely a thing.

It wasn't the thing, it was just a thing to add to a polish.

Truth be told, it was even treated disinterestedly by many. Understandable. Taste is taste. And holos, flakies and other color shifting pigments were eye-popping. 

Now, apparently it's hard to find again. I browsed some pigment stuff, but if you want the real deal on pigments, you need to hit the amazing blog Polish and Pigments (I've linked a search)

It's daunting now, because once again this pigment is supposed to be rare. Clarin's is back up to three figures and only a handful of auctions are listed on eBay.

What happened? I do not know.

Meanwhile ILNP came back out with a polish called The Magician, a red/green color shifting polish.

I wanted to compare old and new. Mica versus manufactured (though I don't know what that might actually mean).

Left to right:
Clarins 230
ILNP The Magician
Blue Cross Liquid Euphoria Nirvana

These are all over a navy blue.

Difference? Not a lot. I think Nirvana is more dense. Nice!

Here are the bottles:

Same order.

Finally, the shift:

This is the money on this shift: the green. 

Left to right:
Blue Cross Liquid Euphoria Nirvana
ILNP The Magician
Clarins 230

I think, again, the Blue Cross is the stunner: more dense with the shimmer and therefore more green.

I think The Magician holds a strong second with Clarins pulling up in third, though it's nearly a trifecta. 

Where to find
Clarins 230 is now very expensive again and more scarce on eBay.
Magician is still very much available (after a frenzy of buying because it was thought to be limited edition, but more pigment was found).
Nirvana? Well, if you luck out and find it, then lucky you! 

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!