Friday, November 29, 2013

Sally Hansen Reverse French Salon Effects in Red My Tulips

Sally Hansen's nail wraps are some of the best on the market so I was very excited to see them introduce reverse French designs to their line-up. I'm not a fan of traditional French manis, but these more contemporary takes on the idea are totally my style! I picked up two of the new reverse French wraps and the first one I'll be showing you is Red My Tulips, a metallic silver with a red reverse French accent. I love this design and I've gotten a ton of compliments on it, even from strangers! It's simple but still eye-catching.

If you've never tried any of the Sally Hansen Salon Effects before, then you're in for a treat. They are a dream to work with and, along with Incoco, are my favorite nail wraps. They have are very thin and flexible and I think they're much easier to apply than some of the thicker, sticker-like wraps, which can require some extra finesse when you're trying to avoid creases or bubbles. These apply effortlessly, with no wrinkles whatsoever. If you've striggled with some of the thicker wraps in the past, I think you'll find these much easier to work with. For how thin they are, they're also impressively sturdy. I had some initial tipwear after one day of wear (I had this same problem with Incoco's Heavy Metal wraps--something about metallic silvers, maybe?) but after that, they held up admirably over four days of wear, with no peeling or major tears.

I'm glad I was able to hunt these wraps down. (I had to go to a couple different stores to find them.) I'm not sure if these reverse French designs are going to be a permanent edition to the Salon Effects line or if they're limited edition, but I hope they'll stick around!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

OPI You Don't Know Jacques

Today's polish is an oldie but a goodie: OPI You Don't Know Jacques. This deep taupe was one of my first OPIs and it's still a favorite palette cleanser of mine. It's understated without being snooze-worthy, which makes for a classic neutral in my book. This is a deceptively simple shade that pulls differently on every skin tone, while still flattering each one.

The formula goes on a little thin with the first coat, but builds to opacity in three. You Don't Know Jacques is a fabulous staple shade to have in your stash. I highly suggest picking this one up if you haven't already!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Twinsie Tuesday: Chelsea Can't Read

So I'm a jackass and got my Twinsie Tuesday schedule mixed up by accidentally posting what was supposed to be next week's theme this week. I took down the post I had up earlier today, but don't worry if you missed it; you'll be seeing it next week! If you did happen to catch it, then congrats, you got a sneak peek at next week's theme on account of my inability to read.

So no TT post from me this week, but please do check out what my fellow Twinsies are posting today. I'm so sorry for the mix-up, everyone!

Amanda at Amandalandish
Amber at Nails Like Lace
Chelsea at Nailed Blog
Cordia at Seriously Swatched
Elizabeth at Did My Nails
Kelly at Tuxarina
Lakeisha at Refined and Polished
Marisa at Polish Obsession
Meredith at Polish and Charms
Rachel at Top Coat It
Róisín at Cuti-CLUE-les
Traci at DrinkCitra

Monday, November 25, 2013

Review: Lush Catastrophe Cosmetic Fresh Face Mask

Hope you all had a fun weekend! I have been nursing a bitch of a head cold today, so I'm about to curl up with some tea and Captain America comics before calling it a night. Good thing I have the day off tomorrow so I can hopefully catch some extra sleep.

Anywho, I'm gradually working my way through Lush's entire Fresh Face Mask line and sharing my impressions on each mask. So I'm excited to talk about one of my very favorites today: the blueberry bliss that is Catastrophe Cosmetic! All of the Fresh Face Masks are geared toward a specific set of concerns and Catastrophe Cosmetic is Lush's soothing, balancing mask for skin that's prone to irritation and blemishes.

Catastrophe Cosmetic contains calamine (soothing), talc (cleansing), Irish moss gel (softens skin) and, as you might have inferred from the picture, fresh blueberries (rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals). It's gentler mask but that doesn't mean it's not effective. I like to think of it as a chill pill for your skin. When you're struggling with chapped skin, redness or impending breakouts, Catastrophe Cosmetic helps soothe and restore you skin to a balanced state, without agitating it any further.

There's no burning or tingling sensation that you sometimes experience with other deep cleansing masks, so it's a nice mask for wintertime when I need to baby my combination skin to keep it from veering into dry, flaky territory but it's also very refreshing in warmer weather too. Once I remove the mask, my skin feels clean, soft and supple. If you've found other acne spot treatments or masks tend to dry your skin out, give this one a shot. It's not so harsh that it'll make your face feel tight but it's not so mild that it feels like it didn't do anything.

I love how Catastrophe Cosmetic soothes and clears my skin, plus the smell is absolutely amazing--assuming you enjoy blueberries, of course. It smells like real blueberries instead of some fake fruit scent like blueberry Runts. I always crave fruit after I use this, which I suppose isn't a bad thing.

If you're new to Lush face masks, Catastrophe Cosmetic is a fabulous mask to start with, because it's nice and mild, plus it has ingredients that will potentially benefit all skin types. Whether you're dry, oily or somewhere in between, this mask will sort your skin out and bring it right back where it needs to be!

A single pot costs $6.95 and you can get about six to eight masks per pot, depending on how thickly you apply them, so it really is a great value. The masks need to be refrigerated because they contain fresh ingredients with no preservatives, so the only place you can buy them is in-store. They have a shelf life of three weeks, but personally I just treat them like food: So long as you store them properly and check for changes in scent and consistency, you can get away with using them a bit longer than the official shelf life. Or, as my friend Ash has suggested, you can also try freezing them!

If you're curious to learn more about all of the different Fresh Face Masks, check out my other reviews too: Cupcake, Love Lettuce, BB Seaweed and Cosmetic Warrior.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Zoya Dhara

Zoya Dhara is a bright orange PixieDust polish with gold glitter. This would work great as both a citrus-y orange for summer or as companion to the changing leaves for fall. Maybe it's because everything is so grey and somber here this time of year in Michigan, but I find that Dhara's cheery orange is a nice little pick-me-up.

The formula is excellent and covers in three coats. Like Liquid Sand, PixieDust polishes are virtually bulletproof on me and Dhara is no exception. I find myself reaching for textured polishes on days when I know I'm going to be hard on my hands and I don't want to worry about chips or breaks. I've been wearing Dhara for more than four days now (this is an ETERNITY for me, but my schedule's been too crazy lately for me to re-paint my nails) and it still looks good as new!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Born Pretty Pikachu Water Decals: Review & Swatches

What child of the 90s doesn't have a soft spot in their heart for Pikachu? From trekking to Veridian City together in Pokémon Yellow to huddling around the N64 with my cousins to hurl verbal abuse at him in "Hey You, Pikachu!" (Am I the only one who remembers this game?), the electric rat and I go way back. So I might have squealed just a little bit when I saw these adorable Pikachu water decals on the Born Pretty Store website.

The decals are super easy to use. Just wet them, peel off the paper backing and place them on the nail. The decals themselves are yellow and shaped so that you could wear them as a funky French of sorts, but I had a little trouble getting them to lie flat around my tips, so I decided to paint my nails to match the decals.

I started with a white base of Illamasqua Scorch, then layered Deborah Lippmann Yellow Brick Road (which is a bitch and a half to work with--any lumpiness or unevenness you see here is because of Yellow Brick Road's difficult formula, not the decals) over top. Yellow Brick Road may be a pain in the ass to apply, but it matched Pikachu perfectly!

Aren't these cute? I love his little winky face best!

If you would like to purchase anything from Born Pretty, they offer 10% off for Nailed readers:

Disclosure: This product was sent to me for my honest review. For more information, please see my disclosure policy.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Review: Lush Sea Vegetable Soap

Sea Vegetable is one of my favorite Lush soaps ever! It's really more than just a soap though--you also get a gentle exfoliant too! One end of the soap is soft and creamy, while the other end has a crust of seaweed and sea salt. The sea salt brushes away dead skin and other nasties, while the seaweed softens and hydrates. I love the way the sea salt feels. It's not overly harsh or scratchy and it doesn't leave behind that tight, stripped feeling you get with some soaps. Sea Vegetable lathers well too.

The scent is a fresh blend of lime and lavender oils. (The lavender acts an antiseptic too!) The smell is simultaneously invigorating and soothing, just like the soap itself. I consider it a pretty gender-neutral scent, so this might make a good gift for guys, although my boyfriend thought it was a little too feminine for his tastes. (He likes minty stuff like Dirty and Ice Blue better.)

I've still got a big block of this but I plan on re-purchasing once I run out! This is one of Lush's permanent products, so thankfully it's available year-round.

Have you ever tried Sea Vegetable? If so, what'd you think?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Twinsie Tuesday: East Coast Vs. West Coast

With Twinsie Tuesday, we have bloggers not only across the country, but all over the world! So we're having some fun with that this week by squaring off with an East Coast vs. West Coast swatch-off! Our west coast bloggers will show their favorite shimmer, while the east coast bloggers will wear their favorite glitters. I'm from the Midwest--Michigan, to be precise--so I'm kinda in between. We decided that our Midwest bloggers would fall in with the west coast crew, so I'll be Team Shimmer today!

After some debating, I decided that OPI Movin' Out deserves the "favorite shimmer" title, for a couple of reasons. First of all, this polish is full of multichrome, color-shifting, amazeballs awesomeness. It has a sheer, rose-tinted base that shifts from green to gold, plus these incredible red sparks that practically sizzle in the light. This is the kind of polish you just don't see made anymore now that everything is 3-free. Those nasty chemicals sure did make for some kickass polishes!

This is two coats of Movin' Out over OPI You Don't Know Jacques, a dark taupe. (I've also swatched it over black before, which you can check out HERE.)

The other reason this polish is special to me is because it was a birthday gift from my boyfriend! I've spoken before on here about our shared love of Billy Joel, so this polish, named for a Billy Joel song as well as the Broadway musical that features his music, was the perfect gift between two huge dorks in love.

So there you have it: my favorite shimmer! What's yours?

Amanda at Amandalandish
Amber at Nails Like Lace
Chelsea at Nailed Blog
Cordia at Seriously Swatched
Elizabeth at Did My Nails
Kelly at Tuxarina
Lakeisha at Refined and Polished
Marisa at Polish Obsession
Meredith at Polish and Charms
Rachel at Top Coat It
Róisín at Cuti-CLUE-les
Traci at DrinkCitra

Monday, November 18, 2013

OPI Jinx

I have worn many a textured polish this year and I don't think it would be hyperbole to say that OPI Jinx is the most jaw-droppingly gorgeous of them all. This intensely vibrant red with glimmers of gold is, quite simply, perfect. It's not only perhaps my favorite textured polish ever (OPI Tiffany Case and Zoya Stevie would be the other contenders) but one of my all-time favorite OPIs, period.

Jinx applies as marvelously as she looks. She's pretty much opaque in two coats, but I wound up applying three, because I'm super anal retentive about VNL. I love how the second pic came out a little blurred, as it helps show off that amazing gold shimmer that makes Jinx so special. It's insane how much this polish glows! I really cannot say enough about how beautiful Jinx is.

If you're still on the fence about the whole texture thing, give Jinx a try. I think she'll win you over! The wonderful formula and gorgeous mix of red and gold are a prime example of textured polish done right. Or if you're already a convert, then Jinx needs to have a place in your collection, plain and simple!

Do you love Jinx as much as I do? What's YOUR favorite textured polish?

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Lumina Lacquer Desfile de Mickey

Who amongst us could resist a rainbow glitterbomb complete with Mickey Mouse glitter? Who, I ask you?! So naturally you can see how I was powerless to resist the adorable awesomeness that is Lumina Lacquer Desfile de Mickey.

Desfile de Mickey has a slew of matte black hexes accompanied by pretty much every color and shape of glitter imaginable. It would be hard to list all of the shapes of glitter in this polish, but a few I've noticed are: circles, hexes, stars, squares, diamonds, butteflies and of course those adorable silver holo Mickey Mouse glitters! This is three coats over OPI If You Moust You Moust from last year's Minnie Mouse Collection. (I swear I didn't even realize that connection until just now! I just thought they would look cool together.)

I was pleasantly surprised that I didn't have to fish for the Mickeys. A lot of times with glitterbombs that have a ton of different shapes in them, those bigger glitters can be frustratingly elusive, but there were plenty of Mickeys to go around here! :) The overall formula is excellent and I didn't have to do any placing either!

Unfortunately I don't think Desfile is being produced anymore, but Lumina Lacquer does carry other Mickey-themed glitters! You can purchase Lumina Lacquer from the brand's website.

Friday, November 15, 2013

CND Vinylux Pretty Poison

I've got another CND Vinylux polish to share from Beyond Polish today. The Vinylux line is designed to mimic the high-shine look and long wear time of Shellac polish, without the UV light. The shade I'll be showing you is called Pretty Poison. It's a blackened forest green with flecks of gold, bronze and green glitter. I love a good dark green! This is a truly gorgeous shade and would make a great polish for Christmas time too!

Pretty Poison applied beautifully and was opaque in two coats. Like the other Vinylux shade I tried, Limeade, Pretty Poison dries down to a satin finish, so topcoat is a must. There's a special Vinylux topcoat designed to give you the longest wear time, but I just used my old stand-by, Seche Vite, and the polish still wore fine, although I did experience the bane of any Seche lover's existence: shrinkage! UGH!

I can't wait to layer some Christmas-y looking glitters over this! I think it would make the perfect base!

Disclosure: This polish was provided to me for my honest review. For more information, please see my disclosure policy.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

China Glaze City Flourish Preview

We just got our first big frost here on Wednesday, so I'm not quite in the mood to look at spring colors yet, but hey, it's never too early to get your wishlist (and your wallet) ready! See if you find anything lust-worthy in China Glaze's upcoming spring collection, City Flourish!
L to R: Petal to the Metal, Peonies & Park Ave, Spring In My Step, In A Lily Bit, Lotus Begin, At Vase Value

L to R: Don't Honk Your Thorn, Strike A Rose, What A Pansy, Thistle Do Nicely, Grass Is Lime Greener, Metro Pollen-tin

Is it just me or is China Glaze getting even worse than OPI with the terrible puns? Lotus Begin and Metro Pollen-tin in particular made me want to rage vomit. But the colors themselves look very nice. I think this collection has a very similar vibe to the Avant Garden Collection from earlier this year, which is a plus in my books!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

CND Vinylux Limeade

I've got another review from etailer Beyond Polish today! If you're not familiar with the site, they carry a variety of brands from Essie to OPI to China Glaze, including their newest collections and older polishes too.

Today I'll be sharing CND Limeade with you, from CND's Vinylux line. The line is designed to mimic the high-shine look and extended wear-time of a Shellac mani, but without the UV light. This was also my very first time trying out a CND polish period, so I was extra excited to try it!

Limeade is a super bright lime green shimmer with a golden yellow shift to it. I can't remember the last time I wore a polish that glows like this one does! It's such a vibrant shade of green to begin with, then the shimmer really pops out at you and gives this polish an almost electric glow!

Pictures don't do justice to how insanely bright Limeade truly is. One of my co-workers told me the color reminded her of the Grinch and I kinda like that comparison for some reason! Anyways, the formula here was okay. I found it thick and a little brushstroke-y. What you see above is three coats. Limeade dries down to a satin finish, like how you see with a lot of neons, so you'll need to add a topcoat if you want to make that crazy beautiful shimmer really sing.

CND has dubbed the Vinylux polishes as "weekly polish" and I could easily see it lasting that long and still looking good as new. This polish wore like iron! Technically you are supposed to use the special CND Vinylux Weekly Topcoat to see the best results, but I just paired Limeade with my regular Seche Vite and still enjoyed three days of chip-free, zero-tipwear nails before I decided it was time to change things up. I took these shots on day three and my manicure looked just as good as it did on day one.

As far as customer service goes, I had a great experience with Beyond Polish. Their team did a fabulous job keeping me up-to-date on the status of my shipment, which arrived very quickly and without any issues!

Have you ever tried any Vinylux polishes? I'd love to hear your thoughts on the line!

Disclosure: This polish was provided to me for my honest review. For more information, please see my disclosure policy.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Twinsie Tuesday: Marching Orders - Take...4, Maybe?

We've done the Marching Orders challenge a number of times for Twinsie Tuesday. I can't remember how many exactly, as you might have noticed by this post's title. But with this challenge, we are all randomly paired off with a Twinsie who we get to assign a manicure to. We can choose a particular technique we want them to use, certain colors, whatever!

The fabulous Amanda got to give me my orders this time around and she meant business! Her marching orders had multiple requirements. I'll list them below, followed by how I chose to incorporate each step into my finished mani. Per Amanda's instructions, my mani had to include...

The color periwinkle: I chose a base of Essie Boxer Shorts to start things off.

A heart: I layered Glimmer by Erica I Heart You, which contains pearly pink heart glitters, over Boxer Shorts.

A touch of matte somewhere in the mani: I Heart You also has matte pink squares. Score!

Non-ring finger accent nail: Thumbs, this is your time to shine! I used Studio M Jingle Jangle for my accent nail, because it went well with I Heart You and, most important, also contained the final element I needed to complete Amanda's challenge, which was...

Purple glitter: Amanda is the purple queen, so I knew her instructions would include purple somehow! :) Jingle Jangle's mix of blue and purple glitter worked perfectly here.

So here is how all of those things came together for the final mani!

Aaaaannnnddd now that I post the photos I notice that I didn't do any clean-up on my pinky. Go me. But anyways, I am thrilled that I was able to get through this challenge without resorting to nail art. Yay! It did take some thinking and shifting through my stash to get all the right "ingredients" but that's half the fun!

I got to assign a mani to Anne, so be sure to sure to swing by her blog and see whether or not I chose to be mean and terrible with my marching orders for her. (I don't think I was, but Anne might see it differently, I dunno hahaha.) I can't wait to see what everyone else assigned each other too!

Amanda at Amandalandish
Amber at Nails Like Lace
Chelsea at Nailed Blog
Cordia at Seriously Swatched
Elizabeth at Did My Nails
Kelly at Tuxarina
Lakeisha at Refined and Polished
Marisa at Polish Obsession
Meredith at Polish and Charms
Rachel at Top Coat It
Róisín at Cuti-CLUE-les
Traci at DrinkCitra

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Review: Lush Prince Shaving Cream

I've been using Skintimate shave gel for years, but I always feel like I go through it really quickly, so I decided to try something new and check out Lush's Prince Shaving Cream. As you might have guessed by the name, Prince is intended for dudes, but that doesn't mean it won't work for us girls too!

Prince is filled with all kinds of softening and moisturizing ingredients to create a nice cushion for your blade and prevent razor burn and bumps. You've got cocoa butter, shea butter, rose water, flaxseed oil--all good stuff for a smooth, close shave. Prince also contains orange flower absolute and sweet orange oil, so it smells just like a fresh-picked orange. If you've ever used one of Lush's citrus-scented products in the past, then you know there's a huge difference between a product with artificial fruit fragrance in it and something that actually contains the real thing! It's a fresh, fruity scent, but not cloying or overly sweet--after all, this is a product for guys.

All of those wonderful butters and oils make for a shave that's as close as it is comfortable. My legs feel sooo smooth and soft after I use Prince! I can definitely feel and see a difference between this and regular shaving gel. The neat thing too is that once you're done shaving, you can rub any excess Prince into your legs to give them a nice mini conditioning treatment. I haven't had any issues with razor burn or bumps since I switched over to Prince. It is so rich that a little bit goes a long way. I've been using Prince for several months now and am only about halfway through my small container.

And that brings me to the one thing I don't 100% love about Prince: it clogs my razor. Prince's rich texture does an excellent job of banishing razor burn, but a couple times each shave, my razor gets gunked up and I have to blast it under the faucet or hit it against the side of the tub to clean out the blades. It's an annoyance, but I love the super smooth shave I get with Prince, so I put up with it. I used up my last can of regular shaving gel and I can't see myself going back! Prince is pricier than traditional shave gel but it also lasts me much, much longer and delivers a better shave, so I think it's worth the extra money!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Born Pretty Moon and Stars Water Decals: Review & Swatches

I don't think I will ever get tired of Born Pretty Store's water decals. They're one of my all-time favorite nail art products and they come in a ton of different designs. The design I have to show you today features a crescent moon and some stars. You can check out the decals on Born Pretty's site HERE, where you also have the option of this same design but in white.

The decals are extremely easy to use and they work a lot like a temporary tattoo. You cut them out, dunk 'em in water for a few seconds, peel the backing off, then stick the decal to your nail. Seal with topcoat and then you have instant nail art! I love how simple they are to use and I always get a ton of compliments on them!

Here are the decals over Color Club Harp On It, a silver linear holo.

There's ten decals in this set, so it's a steal at less than $1.50! The decals were a bit large for my nails, so you can either do some trimming or just do what I did: wait until your topcoat dries, then pull off the excess parts of the decal.

As usual, I had an awesome experience with these water decals! The design is gorgeous and the quality is great. Whether you're a nail art n00b or a pro, I think anyone would love these! They're so quick and fun to use.

If you would like to order anything from Born Pretty, they offer a 10% discount to Nailed readers with this code:

Disclosure: This product was sent to me for my honest review. For more information, please see my disclosure policy.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

OPI Brazil Collection Preview

So we already know that OPI will be teaming up with Gwen Stefani for a new collection in January, but what about their big spring collection? Well, OPI selects a new destination each year for the theme of their spring collection and this year's is going to be inspired by Brazil! Take a look!


Minis Set - L to R: Next Stop...The Bikini Zone, Kiss Me I'm Brazilian, AmazON...AmazOFF, Where Did Suzi's Man-go?
Liquid Sand Minis Set: Samba-dy Loves Purple, I'm Brazil Nuts Over You, What's a Little Rain Forest, You're So Flippy Floppy

No word yet if the Liquid Sands seen in the mini set will be released in full sizes as well. The Brazil Collection is set for release this coming February. What do you think? I'm looking forward to Next Stop...The Bikini Zone and AmazON...AmazOFF!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Essie Mind Your Mittens

The fine folks at etailer Beyond Polish recently asked me if I would like to try out some of the new polishes on their website. They have an extremely well-rounded selection from brands like Essie, OPI and CND, with polishes from the latest collections as well as older ones. I received three polishes to try out and I'll be doing a separate review for each.

So first up we have Essie Mind Your Mittens from the Shearling Darling Collection. This is a gorgeous deep teal with a green undertone that sets it apart from other dark blues Essie has done in the past, like Bobbing For Baubles. I knew I'd like this polish, but I didn't expect to fall in love with it as much as I did! It's such a rich, sophisticated shade that fits right in with the classic jewel tones that are always popular this time of year.

The formula is fantastic and very nearly a one-coater. I used two here. Essie's formulas can be hit or miss, but when they really get it right, you'd have a hard time finding another polish that applies as effortlessly and smoothly. Mind Your Mittens is a prime example of this!

On the customer service front, my experience with Beyond Polish was excellent! Their team did a great job keeping me up-to-date on the status of my shipment, which arrived very quickly. My polishes were packaged securely and made it to me without any issues!

Disclosure: This polish was sent to me for my honest review. For more information, please see my disclosure policy.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Twinsie Tuesday: Cloud Mani

One of the many ways Twinsie Tuesday has improved my blogging experience is that it's made me more confident with nail art--not necessarily better, mind you, but more confident that I (hopefully) won't make a complete ass out of myself with nail art themes like this week's cloud mani.

I started with a base of Sally Hansen All Fired Up (which photographed a little too red here--it has more of an orange tone to it in real life), then freehanded the clouds from there, using Essie Good As Gold and Essie Mind Your Mittens. I think it turned out pretty well! I even felt bold enough to do the design on both hands and wear it as a full mani.

This was a fun technique to try and I wouldn't mind doing it again with some other colors! It's pretty easy to do, even if you're like me and don't have the steadiest of hands. You just have to do some careful brushstroke placement to create the tops of the clouds, then you're good to go!

Amanda at Amandalandish
Amber at Nails Like Lace
Chelsea at Nailed Blog
Cordia at Seriously Swatched
Elizabeth at Did My Nails
Kelly at Tuxarina
Lakeisha at Refined and Polished
Marisa at Polish Obsession
Meredith at Polish and Charms
Rachel at Top Coat It
Róisín at Cuti-CLUE-les
Traci at DrinkCitra

Monday, November 4, 2013

Revlon By Marchesa Silk Rosette Nail Wraps: Review & Swatches

You might remember that I had a pretty disappointing experience with the Revlon by Marchesa Brocade Wraps. They were absolutely gorgeous but the wear time left a lot to be desired. Unlike the Brocade wraps, which are more like thick stickers, the Silk Rosette wraps are a clear-based decal meant to be worn over a polish base. So I was curious to see if these would wear any better than the Brocade wraps did. I really wanted to love these wraps, because I think they are some of the prettiest designs on the market! But unfortunately, this set of wraps had a lot of the same problems as the last set...

I have zero complaints about the design itself. It looks very sophisticated and ornate. The decals have a clear base, with delicate blue rosebuds and leaves. It reminds me of something you'd see on an antique rug or tapestry. Here are the wraps over Essie No Place Like Chrome.

While they look luxurious, the application was not as impressive. Like the Brocade wraps, these began to pucker and peel around the edges almost immediately after I applied them--and all I was doing was sitting at home, nothing that would have put any stress or strain on my hands and nails. (You can already see some of the decals creasing on my nails in these pictures and this was only a very short while after I had first applied them!) These didn't tear like the Brocade wraps did and overall these are a bit sturdier wraps, but they still got the same crinkly, creased look to them after only a day of wear. It was annoying to feel all the dents and puckered edges on my nails. The wraps apply reasonably well, but the adhesive is simply not strong enough to keep them lying flat and smooth against the nail.

So while these were an improvement over the Brocade wraps, I still cannot recommend these. Given the price (about $9-$10, depending on where you buy), it's extremely disappointing that these can't even make it through a day of wear intact. If you need a special manicure for a big event and only need it to last a few short hours (even then you might be pushing it with these staying 100% pristine), then yes, these are very pretty wraps. But if you need these to last you any longer than that, you're better off putting your money toward some Sally Hansen or Incoco wraps. They're about the same price and much better quality.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

OPI Honey Ryder

I had come to regret missing out on OPI Honey Ryder from this summer's Bond Girls Collection, so when I happened across a lone bottle at the store this past weekend, I snatched it up! Honey Ryder is named for the original Bond girl, portrayed by Ursula Andress in Dr. No. Due to her heavy accent, Andress' voice was actually dubbed over in the film. But she still managed to earn her place in cinematic history by making one hell of an entrance in the film. Get it, gurl.

With Honey embodying all things sun and sand, it makes perfect sense that the polish that bears her name is a gleaming shade of gold.

The formula here is outstanding; one of the nicest I've encountered in a textured polish, OPI or otherwise. It goes on flawlessly and is very nearly a one-coater, although I used two here. I'm pretty finicky about golds on me. I don't think they are the most flattering on my skin tone and I try to avoid any golds with too much yellow in them. But Honey Ryder is a perfect true gold and I absolutely love it! Not only does it make for a great summer shade, it also works well as a holiday metallic. I'm so glad I picked this one up!