Friday, October 25, 2013


I love Creative Nail Design's nail polishes.

A quick browse through their website tells me they aren't even listing nail polish, just shellac (14 day wear) and Vinylux (week long wear). Zero nail polish discussed. Why? You were so good at it!

I commend them for seriously creating top coats or Effects polishes. I guess people just didn't enjoy it enough to buy it.

To be honest I see maaaaaany polishes that could be achieved with a layering technique versus buying one bottle. OTOH, not a lot of people like multiple bottles of polish, hence the demise of the Color and Effects, by my deduction through its absence on their site.

The three categories CND offered was kind of genius: sparkle (glass fleck), shimmer (fine shimmer) and pearl (fine iridescent/pearlescent shimmers). Pretty fabulous and rather useful. Rather!

Back in 2010 they came out with there teal set of Color and Effects called Night Factory, featuring Urban Oasis and Teal Sparkle. It's a constant reminder that I should just buy what I love and not skip it and wait until later. I still rue missing that one.

In fall 2011 I purchased their The Look trio, Midnight Sapphire (navy creme) and Dark Amethyst (deep wine) which came with a topper called 24K Sparkle.

Generic base colors - inasmuch if you have them, you don't need them, but if you don't have them, these are good to have - and a topper that was pretty unique.

Then Essie came out with holiday crazy awesome Luxeffects and As Gold as it Gets was declared a dupe. I picked up all the holiday colors, then just let my CND set languish.

So, thinking As Gold as it Gets was a dupe of 24K Sparkle, I thought, I better examine what I've got!

Let's start with the macro:

Left: Midnight Sapphire, three coats each topper.  Right: Dark Amethyst, one coat each topper.

I did each polish side by side on the same nail.

In every photo on the left side of the nail is CND 24K Sparkle on the right side of the nail is Essie As Gold As It Gets.

They are similar. They do have a similar golden shade, CND appears to impart more of that flakey iridescence. CND's offering is more solid, Essie's more translucent.


Here is a one coat of each topper over Dark Amethyst. Again: Left CND, right Essie.

When adding a golden topper, it warms up the Dark Amethyst considerably. It's labeled "warm" on the bottom of the bottle, but definitely in the purple family of vampies rather than the red/brown.
It's deep, but not a near black, which makes it a nice shade on its own.

Essie's big different, is that it has a ton of fine pieces in the mix, whereas CND has fewer, larger pieces.

Here are three coats each over Midnight Sapphire:

On each nail:
Left: CND
Right: Essie.

Essie becomes very dense, and, though CND definitely builds, you can still see the more mosaic effect that these flakes impart.
Midnight Sapphire is a pretty normal navy, not so terribly blackened, but definitely navy. Nothing to suggest a purple, blurple, or grape at all. Just blue. ;D

My personal preference?

Well, I've got the CND filed under "flake" and the Essie filed under "fleck top coat". Although the Essie particles are less uniform than a glass fleck, it's really not vibing a true flakie in my estimation.

They are similar, though, but not entirely dupes.

Here are the bottle shots:

Right now the CND is on Amazon, alone not in a set. A bit expensive at $11.99 plus shipping. Essie As Gold as it Gets is being rereleased with the Luxeffects again pretty soon, so if you missed it, it'll be around. Retail runs $8, but it can be found on etailer sites for less, plus their's Amazon and eBay.

I will say that gold flakies are hard to find, so of you find the CND at a nice price point for your wallet it would be something unique. 
24K Sparkle straddles flake and gold leaf territory and fills that niche nicely.

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!


  1. The CND looks amazing! I've got the Essie though, so that will be good enough for me. Great comparison!

  2. I hate to be the bearer of bad news but you may have already figured out that their regular polish line was discontinued many months ago, long before the launch of their replacement - Vinylux. I loved the Effects polishes as well but since they're discontinued you can now find them fairly easily in the clearance bins. CND is a pro brand and they have to keep up with pro demands - which with the recent soak off gel rage, has seen the steady decline of demand for regular nail polish. In my opinion, these polishes were better than Vinylux...but what can you do?

    1. I finally figure it out, more like! :D

      I think you nailed it: salons rule roost, I see so many salon manicures. I get the convenience.
      What can I do? Tempt people with luscious manis!

      Or try, anyhow!


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