Sunday, April 29, 2012

Revlon Mint Gelato

Hello everyone! I'm happy to report my exams are OVER and I have graduated from college! Thank you for bearing with me during my slightly sporadic posting schedule this last week or so. Things should be getting back to normal around here now that my exams are through.

Anyways, have you seen the newest Revlon collection? The display images for it feature macaroons, which are both delicious and adorable, and the entire line is dessert-themed and scented! I was hooked at macaroons; I have an odd fixation with them. Ultimately I picked up two polishes from the collection: a purple-y pink called Sugar Glaze and the polish I'll be showing you today, Mint Gelato.

Mint Gelato is a green-leaning turquoise creme. It's kind of like China Glaze For Audrey's greener, mint-scented little sister! I absolutely adore this polish. It's a cute color and totally on-trend for the season.

I'd never used any of Revlon's scented polishes before so I wasn't sure what to expect in terms of smell. I don't really like the smell of mint so I was a little wary but thankfully the scent is actually quite pleasant--and it actually smells a whole lot like mint gelato! The smell was noticeable while I painted my nails and when my hands are by my face, I can still smell it now that the polish has dried. It's not overpowering but it is there, so if you're sensitive to scented products you might want to take a whiff of this polish before you buy it to make sure it's not something that will bother you.

The formula is on the runny side but not unworkable. It took three coats to cover completely for this mani. I was afraid I might have a dupe of this but it actually doesn't look like I do. It's more blue than polishes like OPI Mermaid's Tears but as I mentioned above, more green than polishes like China Glaze For Audrey--at least to my eye.

Overall I'm extremely happy with Mint Gelato. It's just such a fun color. The whole collection looked really nice so I'd suggest keeping an eye out for it next time you're at the grocery store or drugstore. Just look for the yummy dessert display. :) All of you modern-day Marie Antoinettes out there will love it!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Essie Summer 2012 Collection Preview

I had kind of assumed that Essie's neon collection would be their summer offering but it looks like we've got some more polishes to be on the lookout for! As you can see from the shot below, Essie's official summer collection is slated to hit shelves on June 1. Take a look!

So clearly I need Mojito Madness in my life. Whenever Essie does a green, I pretty much have to have it. I'll wait on swatches for the rest before making my final picks but overall this looks like a fun set! (I dunno if it's just me though but does All Tied Up look out of place to anyone else?)

Will you be picking any of these up?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Get a FREE bottle of Deborah Lippmann Yellow Brick Road!

Want a FREE bottle of Deborah Lippmann's Yellow Brick Road?! This yellow jelly was first revealed to the world last year on the digits of none other than Lady Gaga.

Well, with any order placed on Deborah Lippmann's official site before 11:59 EST today will get a free bottle of Yellow Brick Road included in their order! You do not need to add Yellow Brick Road to your online cart or use any special coupon code. Per Deborah Lippmann's official Facebook page, any orders placed today will automatically have Yellow Brick Road added to them after the fact. How cool is that?!

You know I jumped on this deal in a hot second. It was the perfect excuse for me to finally pick up Mermaid's Dream, which I've been lusting after from the moment I first saw it. Plus I've kinda been eyeing YBR but was unsure if I could really pull it off. I guess now is my opportunity to find out! Also I'm currently slaving away on a take-home multi-essay final exam due tomorrow afternoon. Sounds like an "I deserve a treat" scenario to me hahaha.

Will you be hitting up this deal?

Revlon Moon Candy Preview

I think we all knew it was only a matter of time until one of the drugstore brands busted out their own line of flakies. Flakies came back in a huge way this year and now Revlon is jumping in on the action with their own line of flakie polishes, Moon Candy. These look to be more on the chunkier shredded mylar end of the flakie spectrum (think Studio M Covered In Diamonds), as opposed to tiny duochrome flakes. Take a look!

These duos will be hitting the shelves in August and retailing for $8.95. I'm not usually a big fan of these double-ended polish bottles but it makes sense for a flakie combo. Personally, I'm intrigued. Revlon is one of my favorite drugstore brands and they make some great, affordable polish.
Have you picked up some flakie polishes yet this year? Will you be adding any of the Moon Candy polishes to your fall wishlists?

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Deborah Lippmann Run The World (Girls) Preview

Deborah Lippmann is releasing a fun new set of neon minis just in time for summer! Neon nails seem like they're going to be a huge nail trend once the weather really heats up and as usual, Deborah has her fingers right on the pulse of fashion.

L to R: I Kissed A Girl, It Girl, Hollaback Girl, Nasty Girl, Party Girl

I love the idea of wearing these colors in a Skittles mani! Every shade is cute on its own yet still cohesive as a set. The Run The World (Girls) set retails for $45 and also comes with a free bottle of Flat Top, the brand's matte top coat.

The price is a bit steep for me but man, is this ever tempting! My wallet and I are going to do some serious debating over this set... What about you?

Monday, April 23, 2012

China Glaze Dorothy Who?

I thought I'd share a fabulous, classic glitter with you all today: China Glaze Dorothy Who? from the Wizard of Ooh Ahz Collection.  It's a blue jelly base packed full of silver microglitter. This one's a real stunner!

I love this polish. It reminds me of the night sky. In fact, Dorothy Who? is in kind of the same vein as the infamous Essie Starry Starry Night, although they're not dupes; Starry Starry Night is quite a bit darker and leans more purple. But considering the fact that unlike Starry Starry Night, Dorothy Who? is a core polish and you won't have to practically sell your firstborn son to get it, Dorothy Who? might make a nice substitute, even if it's not a very close one.

But Dorothy Who? is still a classic in its own right and for good reason: it's beautiful! I've only got a few minor quibbles about the formula--it's runny but still covers nicely in three coats--but otherwise this is a total winner.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Butter London Henley Regatta

I was in the mood for some sparkle today so I decided to bust out a glitter polish from my bevvy of untrieds: Butter London Henley Regatta. I had no idea what the name meant when I picked this beauty up, but through the magic of Google, I learned that Henley Regatta is apparently an annual rowing avent on the Thames River.

But enough learning--on to the polish! Henley Regatta is a positively gorgeous blue and teal glitterbomb. The glitter looks so lively and eye-catching on the nail. I love it!

The polish is gorgeous and I got many compliments on it at work. It looks like mermaid nails! However, there were some formula issues here. This was surprisingly sheer and took four coats to reach opacity. The glitter just didn't seem to want to come off the brush and spread evenly onto my nails. You could easily solve this by layering it over something else though. I think next time I may use OPI Fly as a base.

But what really disappointed me the most about this polish is the wear. Less than 24 hours into this manicure, I already had visable tipwear, a few small chips and one huge chip on my right ring finger where about half of the polish came off. Granted, I had a really busy day at work and my hands were getting more banged up than usual but given that Butter is a high-end (and pricey) brand, I expected better wear from this polish. Butter normally wears like iron on me so I'm not sure what happened here... I'll have to wear it more to figure out if this was just a fluke or if Henley Regatta is prone to chipping. I'm hoping that layering will be the solution to both the opacity and weartime issues, because it really is a stunning color.

Do you own Henley Regatta? How does it wear on you?

Friday, April 20, 2012

China Glaze Fast Track

Hello all! I hope you are having a good week so far and that all my fellow college ladies aren't TOO stressed with exams on the horizon! Things have died down for a day or so with my schoolwork but it's going to gear right back up again because I have a paper due Monday. I haven't had a chance to change up my polish as often as I would like, but last night I did manage to find a few minutes before bedtime to do a fresh mani with China Glaze Fast Track from the Hunger Games Collection. Fast Track is a taupe-y shade jam-packed with beautiful gold shimmer. It's like China Glaze Ingrid's blonde sister. It's more of a neutral shade but not boring by any means!

The shimmer in this is so lively and multidimensional. It's a lot of fun to look at and it gives the polish some "oomph" without making it too loud for a work environment. Most of you probably know by now that I like my neutrals to have an extra punch to them and Fast Track certainly falls in that category. The formula is fabulous and covered in three coats.

I took a bit of a chance on this polish because I wasn't sure I needed it, but I'm glad I got it since I wound up loving it! I think the color looks a touch "off" on my skintone because I'm quite cool-toned and the shimmer leans more warm, but it's so pretty that I don't really mind or care. Still, warm-toned ladies, you will rock this color.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Wet N Wild Born Into Privilege

Good ol' Wet N Wild is once again providing some dupes on the cheap for those of us who are young, broke and perpetually polished. Their latest collection, Bejeweled, features several dupes for China Glaze's prismatic glitters. (Just a note though that the Wet N Wild bottles are 0.3 oz, whereas the China Glaze ones are a standard-sized 0.5 oz.) Born Into Privilege appears to be along the same lines as China Glaze Ray-diant. There's a lot going on with Born Into Privilege. It's got a duochrome glitter base that alternately flashes green, gold and silver, as well as rainbow glitter sprinkles on top to really kick things into high gear. Think OPI Excuse Moi! meets Model's Own Gold Green. That's about the closest comparison I could come up with.

This is a very tough polish to photograph because there are so many different elements at play here. I couldn't really capture the duochrome on camera but it is there. It's not an in-your-face color shift but the base color's dominant shade does visibly change with the light.

Despite the ass-ton (that's a technical term, by the way) of glitter in this shade, I had a surprisingly tough time building this polish to opacity. The polish just didn't seem to want to come off the brush. In the end, it took four coats to cover. It's not a deal breaker for me by any means but it was annoying enough that I wanted to mention it.

That being said though, there's honestly no way I'm not going to love a duochrome glitter base with rainbow glitter. How has it taken the polish industry this long to come out with duochrome glitters?! They're amazing! Born Into Privilege is ridiculously cool and at just $2.99, you can't beat the price either. I snagged this and Speak When Spoken To from the collection. These Wet N Wild limited edition collections can be obscenely hard to find (I spotted these at Meijer), but if you come across the Bejeweled polishes, I think you'd be more than happy with picking up a bottle or two as well. They're quite unique and all kinds of gorgeous!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Twinsie Tuesday: Tape Manicure

This week's Twinsie Tuesday features something extremely foreign to me: nail art. *dun dun dun* The theme is a tape manicure and I'd never attempted one before. But like a good twinsie, I gave it the ol' college try. I paired OPI Fly and OPI Did It On 'Em, both from the Nicki Minaj Collection, together for this mani. I turned out much better than I expected, given my incredibly limited nail art skills, but I still don't think it looks too hot.

As you can see, I had a little bit of trouble with some polish seeping under the tape line on my index finger, so I tried to fix that freehand and I think I would up doing more harm than good. That line is seriously wonky-looking. I really like how this color combo turned out but I still have to refine my technique a lot more, although I honestly enjoy seeing other people's art creations much more than I would trying to replicate them myself. This was a fun look to try out for me though because I never would have attempted it on my own. I learned all the way back in elementary school art class that I am "artistically challenged." But a tape mani is straightforward enough that nail art n00bs like me can pull it off...or at least try to haha.

Fortunately though, the Twinsie Tuesday group is full of a lot of incredibly talented nail art fanatics, so I'm sure they came up with some much more impressive tape manicures for today! So check 'em out if you're feeling artsy. ;)


Monday, April 16, 2012

Essie Mirror Metallics Preview

Hot on the heels of Deborah Lippmann unveiling her new mirrored chromes, Essie will soon be unleashing five new chromes in a collection called Mirror Metallics. Check 'em out!

L to R: No Place Like Chrome, Blue Rhapsody, Nothing Else Metals, Good As Gold, Penny Talk

These intrigue me since I don't really have any true chromes, aside from a really old Covergirl polish that, judging by this preview, actually looks quite a bit like Penny Talk. I had some of the awesome old school Sally Hansen ones when I was in middle school that got lost/possibly thrown away somewhere along the line...blargh.

Are you feeling the recent chrome revival? Will you be picking up any of the Mirror Metallics? I'm eyeing No Place Like Chrome and Good As Gold (please be a China Glaze 2030 dupe!), myself.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

MAC Trés Cheek Blushes: Swatches & Review

I recently picked up two blushes from MAC's Trés Cheek Collection: Peony Petal and Modern Mandarin. MAC comes out with a ridiculous amount of collections that can be very overwhelming to keep up with, but these two colors really caught my eye. I'm a fan of bold cheek colors and these looked very fun and fresh, especially with warmer weather starting up.

Modern Mandarin is a soft, citrus-y orange with a satin finish. It's super silky and richly pigmented. The color can be built up for a dramatic look but also blends and diffuses extremely easily if you want something more subtle. All around, it's a really fantastic blush to work with and a pleasure to apply.

The swatch on the left is one swipe with a finger and on the right, I applied with a brush, going a bit heavy so that you could see the true color clearly.

Peony Petal is a bright, blue-based pink with a matte-esque finish. In the pan it looks completely matte but there is a very slight shimmer on the skin. Compared to Modern Mandarin, Peony Petal feels a bit chalkier in the pan but is still very blendable and workable to apply. The pigmentation is rich and flexible enough that, like Modern Mandarin, you could build the color up to pan intensity or do a lighter wash of color. (The swatch on the right below is somewhere in between.) The texture isn't quite as dreamy and smooth as Modern Mandarin but Peony Petal is still an excellent blush on its own merits.

I'm ridiculously pleased with both of these colors and can't wait to try out some new looks! My go-to blushes are NARS Orgasm and the long-discontinued MAC Merrily (I will be beyond sad when mine runs out!), so it'll be fun to have some new colors at my disposal. Either (or both!) of these blushes would make an excellent addition to your spring/summer beauty routine. They are currently available on the MAC and Nordstrom websites and you may also still be able to find them at your local MAC counter. Both shades are limited edition. Happy hunting, ladies!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Essie No More Film

Essie No More Film is the polish I wanted the most from Essie's new resort collection ever since the preview pics first came out. It's a rich indigo creme that reminds me a lot of one of my absolute favorite polishes, OPI Road House Blues from last year's Touring America Collection. No More Film looks to have just a hint more purple to it but if you already have Road House Blues then I'd say you probably don't need No More Film. But I totally needed them both...yeah, that's the logic we'll go with. ;)

The formula on No More Film is perfection. It's a one-coater with smooth, worry-free application. When Essie gets their cremes right, their formulas are practically beyond compare. I love this polish! I find these indigo shades so chic yet extremely wearable--maybe even a little sophisticated too.

Did you get any polishes from Essie's resort collection? This is the only one I picked up. I was extremely tempted by She's Picture Perfect, even though I have a ton of pastel purple Essies that I'm sure are fairly similar to it. Still, I may have to go back for that one...

Friday, April 13, 2012

China Glaze Magnetix II Preview

Looks like China Glaze will be releasing another round of Magnetix polishes later this year, along with another magnet featuring three new designs. As with the previous Magnetix Collection, the polish and magnets will be sold separately. Let's check 'em out!

Cold Fusion

Positively In Love


Get Charged

Sparks Will Fly


Of course, the real fun won't start until we can see what these colors look like with the magnet designs. I actually don't own any of the original Magnetix but I read a few reviews saying the magnet wasn't quite strong enough to make it as user-friendly as other magnetic polishes, so I wonder if China Glaze will make any changes to the magnet strength this time around. I couldn't find any information about an official release date for these yet. But man, China Glaze sure is cranking out a lot of collections this year! Not that that's a bad thing--far from it!

What's your take on magnetic polish? Will you be picking any of these up?

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Butter London Tart With A Heart

Butter London Tart With A Heart is a clear base polish with iridescent and black microglitter and larger iridescent hex glitter. I originally bought this polish because it came in an Ulta holiday set with The Black Knight, which is what I was really after at the time, but I'm extremely impressed with Tart With A Heart as well. (For the record, Ulta now carries these two polishes individually and you can also buy them separately on Butter London's website.) Tart With A Heart would probably take a lot of coats to build up to opacity on its own, as it does have a clear base, so I feel it's best suited for layering. For this particular look, I layered two coats of Tart With A Heart over my pre-existing Essie Ballet Slippers mani.

The formula here is typical Butter London dreamy goodness. The name could not be more appropriate for this brand because all of their polishes really do apply like butter. Tart With A Heart is a great way to spruce up a days-old mani or just sprinkle a little fairy dust on top of one of your favorite colors.

I love how delicate and girly the glitter is in Tart With A Heart, but the fact that Butter also added some black glitter in the mix gives this shade some extra complexity too. The effect almost reminds me of dirty snow--and I mean that in the prettiest way possible haha. There are lots of these iridescent layering glitters out there but I can't come up with any that also have black glitter in the mix. Very cool.

I think this polish would look fab over dark colors as well, which would probably bring out the iridescence even more. In fact, I saw Scrangie layered this over The Black Knight and it was mind blowingly beautiful! That's part of the fun of layering glitters: endless possibilities...

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Deborah Lippmann Summer 2012 Preview

Deborah Lippmann has unveiled three new polishes on her website that are already available for purchase. They all have what's been deemed a "mirrored chrome" finish and based on the preview pictures, they all look gorgeous too!

I'm lemming so many Lippmann polishes right now that it's not even funny, but my wallet rarely allows me to pull the trigger. (I am dying for Mermaid's Dream though!) But these look beyond fabulous. I'm curious to see if Swagga Like Us is yet another Chanel Peridot dupe or if it's a whole other animal. If it's not a match for my beloved Peridot, then I'm totally snagging it!

What about you? Have you picked up any Lippmann polishes lately? See any here that you need to add to your lemming list?

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Twinsie Tuesday: Essie Ballet Slippers

This week's Twinsie Tuesday theme is nude polish. This theme proved especially difficult for me, since I realized I don't own a true nude in my entire collection. I know some people love nude polishes but they're honestly not my thing. So I went with the closest thing I have in my stash: Essie Ballet Slippers, a very pale, soft pink. I've mentioned on here before that this is apparently the only nail polish Queen Elizabeth wears. So that makes this polish literally fit for a queen, right? ;)

The formula on this polish is sheer but very workable. I pretty much demand opacity from my polishes so I used four coats here, but you could easily stop at two if you want a more sheer look, which I would imagine is how this polish is intended to be worn anyways. Although it took four coats to cover, the formula is smooth and not at all runny or goopy.

Ballet Slippers isn't exactly my style in terms of color but I can still recognize that for what it is, it's incredibly nice. I don't see myself becoming a nude polish devotee anytime soon but I actually like this particular polish. If you're looking for a milky neutral that works for any occasion or a color that would be perfect for French manicures, Ballet Slippers is it. I had an internship interview this morning so this was actually a marvelous color to wear today, since I like to keep my look professional and toned down for interviews.

Well, that's all from me today. Be sure to see what the other Twinsie Tuesday gals are sporting!


Monday, April 9, 2012

Kat Von D Mi Vida Loca Palette: Swatches & Review

I think I've watched like, two episodes of "Miami Ink" in my entire life but I recently became intrigued by the new Kat Von D Palette, Mi Vida Loca. I'd never bought anything from her line before but I'd read that her palettes are generally good quality. So after much wavering and debating, I finally took the plunge and ordered Mi Vida Loca online during Sephora's 15% off sale. The entire Kat Von D line is exclusive to Sephora. This palette can currently be purchased online and in stores for $36.

I'm normally an Urban Decay gal but I just couldn't resist the bright colors in this palette. Most of her previous palettes have darker shades that don't appeal to me quite as much but this one seemed unique and fun. Will this adventure in brand exploration be a great new discovery or will I be clinging to my beloved Urban Decay palettes for dear life? Let's find out...

The Packaging
The packaging is very bright and colorful; a perfect match for the colors inside.

The box

The back of the box, with colors and ingredients listed.

I love the inside of the packaging. It's a nice touch.

 The palette itself. It's made of metal and feels durable enough. It's also quite compact and smaller than palettes like, say, Urban Decay Naked, but the pan sizes inside are generous. The palette has a hinge opener and the top pops open all the way so that the top lies completely flat and the hinge makes it so you can't tilt the mirror towards you, which is a little irritating.

The Goods
From left to right, the colors are:
  • Swan Song - An opalescent white with pink duochrome shimmer that is much more interesting on than how it looks in the pan. Very pretty and would be especially great for highlighting and blending.
  • Marya - A pale pink shimmer. Has a frosty finish and good pigmentation.
  • No Regrets - A bright fuchsia with a hint of shimmer. I had some pigmentation issues with this one and it felt dry. This one was bit of a letdown for me because it's not as intense as it appears in the pan.
  • Drama For Yo Momma - A matte purple. This is the chalkiest of the bunch and has the most disappointing pigmentation. I was hoping for a rich, velvety purple but this is quite hard to work with because it's so dry.
  • Mad Max - A bright blue matte. I love this one. Although it's a matte it's not chalky at all and has great pigment and application.
  • Dublin - A bright Kelly green with a pinch of shimmer. This is another favorite of mine from this palette. It felt a bit chalky in the pan but actually applies very smoothly on the skin and has rich pigmentation.
  • Sparklehorse - A rich, warm-toned gold. The application feels silky smooth and soft. Another winner!
  • Altruism - A pale vanilla shade with gold shimmer. This would be great for highlighting but is also vibrant and pigmented enough to have a variety of uses. Like Sparklehorse, Altruism feels super soft and buttery.

All swatches are done on bare skin (no primer).

L to R: Swan Song, Marya, No Regrets, Drama For Yo Momma, Mad Max, Dublin, Sparklehorse, Altruism

L to R: Swan Song, Marya, No Regrets, Drama For Yo Momma

L to R: Mad Max, Dublin, Sparklehorse, Altruism

And here they all are with flash.

In addition to the eight eyeshadows, you also get Wonderchild, an electric blue travel-sized eyeliner pencil. The application is hassle-free and pigmentation is impressive. This pencil is supposed to be water-proof, but I haven't had a chance to test how it well it wears yet.

The Verdict
No Regrets and Drama For You Momma were a little disappointing in terms of application and pigmentation, but still workable. The rest of the shades all perform excellently, particularly the last four in the palette. Mad Max and Dublin are my two favorites. You get a nice variety of colors here and a great amount of product for the money.

I'm very happy with my first Kat Von D purchase and I'm intrigued and impressed enough to definitely purchase more of her palettes in the future! I love to wear bright make-up all year round, but especially during the summertime. I think this palette will be perfect for that!

Do you own Mi Vida Loca or any other Kat Von D products? What do you think of them? Are there any other products from her line that I should pick up ASAP? Clue me in, girls!