Saturday, October 15, 2011

Claire's Try at Dupes

Let's be honest, hype is hype. Hype is also fun.

When Orly came out with their revolutionary Cosmic FX collection heads turned. Then heads kept turning toward all the brands that kept coming out with dupes, or at least the same basic polishes.
I wonder at the company that made those special little polymer glassy glitter particles with all their color changing properties and their smarty-pants marketing.

Well, as usual I ponder arenas that I have no privy to.

Meanwhile, MAC, as we know, came out with their Disney-branded Venomous Villains. Soon thereafter Claires came out with some very similar polishes! I have more on "Mean and Green" (aka Orly Space Cadet and Hard Candy Beetle), but for now I just grabbed the blue and the red, because as much as I enjoy MAC packaging, I wasn't going to get into a sweat over it. Some people collect Disneyana, but I don't.

OK, to the Claires.

First up is Claire's Poison Apple, which is a supposed dupe of MAC Bad Fairy.

The problem with me of all people calling "dupe" when I don't have the original to compare it to, is, well, the problem! I did use All Lacquered Up's blog entry as a peek, and they really aren't dupes at all. This one is definitely darker, warmer and less foil-y.

This is three coats.

Perhaps the density of the glitter particles is less? The lack of a brighter particle? I will say the MAC is richer, more berry tinged and brighter.

This polish is more like OPI Designer Series Perfection's deeper cousin.

So, perhaps there is something to the whole MAC thing. You never know!

Up next is Claire's answer to MAC's Formidable!, Evil Queen.

In the MAC polish Formidable! The glitter has a duochromosity that is quite stellar. I've seen it in the Vampy Varnish blog go from blue to purple to even some teal! Win!

Three coats, by the way!

This seems to have a blue and a purple glassy glitter and perhaps not enough.

Here is the bottle:

No shift, just blue and some demure purple flash. Not feeling it on the nail though.

So I pulled out my Revlon Glimmer Gloss Grape Shimmer:

This is a strong blue glassy particle that is in a pale plummy purple jelly. The base is invisible unless you layer THE HECK out of it over white, and even then, it's a challenge!

I added two coats:

Now you get that blue flash.

I think I could poke around my "glassy top coat" collection and find something with a range of colors. I could also layer a dose of L.A. Girl Punk over it, but I really am not sure about getting the range I saw on Vampy Varnish's page.

In essence the only one that is really close, by comparing photos, is MAC's Mean and Green and Orly's Space Cadet. Though, further research reveals that Orly is probably the one to go to for the dupes of this, and not Claire's. So, can we just say Orly Cosmic FX for the win on dupes? I think that Claire's tried, but swung and missed.

Price point-wise: Orly was hanging their shingle out at $10 a bottle, MAC $13, and Claire's 2 for $6.
Now Orly seems to be more affordable, MAC was a LE and now is in the $20 and up range on eBay (unless you get lucky!), and I don't see the Claire's store carrying them any longer, though eBay has them at a slight mark up.

There you go. What I know about these polishes, not a lot, but hope this round up helps you if you passed on the hot MAC release or even the Orly. Personally, I kind of regret not picking up more of the Orly, hunting pale dupes is not as rewarding when you get into the bang for the buck category!

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!


  1. I like Poison Apple even if it's not a dupe but Evil Queen is quite pathetic! I thought Orly duped Chanel? I like the brand but I don't think the other companies look to them to set the trend. What I wouldn't give to be a fly on the wall when companies decide this kind of stuff.

  2. I didn't know there was a Chanel like that!
    What is it?
    I love the finish and kind of want the MAC set though!
    I am the same way, so curious about the industry!

    I wonder if it is such a secret how they come out with the same colors and similae collection!

    We need a field trip!

  3. *facepalm* I mean I think Orly duped MAC. Sorry, I've got Chanel on the brain because of Peridot and MAC Chroma Green Garter. If you ever do go on a nail polish expedition you should swing by my place. :O I'm always up for a road trip. :D Too bad you live on the wrong coast. *grumble grumble*

  4. LOL!
    Man, if Chanel came out with a funky finish like these, people would be crazy over them!
    I think a Mr. Rogers type of factory tour would be great!


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