Friday, August 28, 2009

Zoya Guest Post by the amazing KarlaSugar!

I have a fun surprise for you! Today, KarlaSugar, aka "The Arm", the genius behind the blog The Next Best Thing To Going Shopping Yourself , is blogging about polish on my blog today! If you're not familiar with The Next Best Thing To Going Shopping Yourself, it is an incredible beauty blog. Not only is KarlaSugar a total sweetie, she's one of the hardest working bloggers out there- she SWATCHES EVERYTHING! And, in turn, makes me BUY EVERYTHING! Really, her blog is a bit of a dangerous place to be.... But it's so, so wonderful. Anyway, the bottom line is- KarlaSugar rocks and here she is on the topic of Zoya's Fall collections.

There are plenty of reasons to get excited for fall: the weather starts to cool down, kids go back to school, and — as a result of the first two — I associate the time of year with shopping.

Zoya is a new-to-me brand of nail polish, and I love both the quality and the price (in my head, OPIs froze at $6, and it hurts me to pay more). When I saw the Truth and Dare Collections on their site, a lightbulb went off in my head. Cheaper than buying clothes (or even makeup), I could have an entirely new "polish wardrobe" for fall.

These 12 polishes are, in my opinion, a work of genius. Every color in a winner, and between the lot of them, I think I have everything I could possibly need until spring. I want to build a tiny closet for them, so I can fling open the little doors and ask myself, "what to wear today?"
Dare is an assortment of cremes — with the exception of a little shimmer in Ibiza. Truth is all shimmers (so festive!); look for the pretty little sparkles in Anaka. And of course, Scrangie has taken gorgeous on-nail photos of these.

Zoya polishes are $6; the collections are $36 — so you're free to make substitutions or order shades individually with no penalty on price. You can order online at Zoya's website (free shipping at $55!), and their site has a salon locator, in case you're one of the insanely lucky people to have a brick-and-mortar near you.

Lippmann Collection 10th Anniversary promotion

Lippmann Collection is celebrating their 10 year anniversary next month! To kick off the celebration, they are giving away a $50 gift certificate to every 10th customer who makes a purchase on on September 1, 2009. The promotion only lasts one day so act fast! To commemorate this milestone, fashion manicurist to the stars Deborah Lippmann created a limited-edition collection of glitz and glamour shades available for just $35. Celebs are flocking to the colors; Lady Gaga loves Ruby Red Slippers.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

New Shades from Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics!

Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics ('OCC') has just released a few new shades of nail lacquer! The cool part is that they call correspond to a matching shade of Lip Tar (which is just about the coolest lip product ever, but that's a review for another post!) so you can match your lips and your nails exactly.

To see the rest of the shades:

Click here for Blackboard, Dangerous, Grandma, Traffic, Swamped (Swamp Thing), Wasabi.

Click here for Anime, Bone Daddy, NSFW (Lucretia), Rhythm Box, Spanglemaker, Uber.

Anime. Medium neon pink. I reviewed this one previously, so click the link above for the full review. I need to make a correction, though! Last time I mentioned that the name was being changed to Pageant- it isn't! Well... maybe it was? I think it used to be Pageant but now it's Anime? Well, doesn't matter... This retina-searing hot pink is Anime and you'll see Pageant below.

Conquest. Pale beige. This is a very milky, delicate looking shade. It seems to be maybe an antique white or a cream shade with a few drops of peach- at least I feel like it has a peachy look to it!

Fondue. Melted chocolate. This is gorgeous for fall. It really does remind me of melted dark chocolate! It's not the power of suggestion. This is a chocolatey shade for sure.

Hush. Girly peachy pink. This is a really cute and flattering color. It reminds me of MAC Seasonal Peach's baby sister. Very soft and feminine. It also has a bit of a retro look to it.

Pageant. Intense fuchsia. This is *almost* neon. Almost! It's really bright! Bright, yet, somehow soft looking at the same time. It's noticeable but not neon.

Petty Beige. Creamy light brown. This reminds me of a few things... Caramel... mustard... Band-Aids? I love these unusual golden shades. They're so fascinating! On certain skintones this would probably be a nice nude or neutral but on me it's more of a conversation piece.

The formula on these is good. The formula is on the thin side but is nicely pigmented. Not streaky! The only one that gave me a little trouble was Conquest, it seemed thick. Conquest is probably meant to be worn as a sheer, but you all know how I feel about wearing sheer polish, so I did three coats. If you choose to wear it sheer, one coat would be fine. They vary in the amount of coats needed for opacity. Anime is the sheerest and Pageant is the most opaque (you could get away with one coat). The drying time is good- I'd say it about average- not long, not lightning fast either. All around, it's a good quality polish.

Now we've seen both ends of the color spectrum- the funky shades like Blackboard which are my favorites, and the more toned-down 'natural' shades like the ones seen here.

Overall, I've really loved everything I've tried from Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics. The quality is great, the color selection is great, and HELLO! Blackboard! Enough said.

The nail lacquers can be purchased here, and if you want to check out the matching Lip Tars (which I highly recommend because they ROCK), click here. Also, all of Obsessive Compulsive's products are vegan and cruelty-free.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

OPI Holiday Wishes Collection Winter/Holiday 2009

Okay, here it is, finally! I had a few hours of nearly cloudless sky and I managed to get these photographed.

Here we go!

All A-Bordeaux The Sled. Very dark vampy brownish wine creme. This one is pretty straightforward. It's dark, it's shiny, it's vampy. Seems more brown than burgundy.

Comet Loves Cupid. Bright holiday red creme. This is so bright and pretty! The sunlight picture makes it look a lot warmer than it really is. This is another one of those bright flashy retro-looking reds.

Crimson Carol. Light crimson red with gold and opalescent microglitter. This is a light, cool-toned red base with some strong pink tones from the glitter. The glitter in this is much more dense and a lot finer than the other glitters in this collection- I'm calling it microglitter.

Dear Santa. Medium red with golden glitter. Dear Santa is a red glitter along the same lines as China Glaze Ruby Pumps. This is more golden than Ruby Pumps, but it has that same hot coals under water look from the glitter in the jelly-like red base. Gorgeous.

Ginger Bells. Warm orangey creme. OPI and Apple Pie v2.0? Kidding! (Well, actually, I really like OPI and Apple Pie...) This really reminds me of gingerbread men! Not the actual kind, but the illustrated kind on cards and decorations. I have a ceramic Gingerbread Man ornament that's almost this exact color. It's more of a soft pumpkin pie shade- it dries a lot darker on the nail than it looks in the bottle. Pumpkin pie... *dreamy sigh*

Glove You So Much. Maroon red shimmer. Another pretty wine shade! Sorry about the bubbles :( Again, the sun brings out the warm tones while the indoor picture picks up on the cool tones. This one looks velvety.

Holiday Glow. Awesome. That's how I would describe this color. It's a little more complicated than that- this shade is pretty complex. It appears to be a rich brownish base with red toned pearl shimmer. It also has lots and lots of gold microglitter. The pictures don't really capture how cool this is. Totally unique.

Meet And Jingle. Medium shimmery red. The shimmer in this one is especially nice- it doesn't look like much indoors, but outdoors it has a lot of sparkle to it. Not horribly memorable, but not awful either.

Merry Midnight. Deep warm purple base with opalescent glitter and opal flakes. Another awesome one. Very hard to capture! This is the first time I've ever seen OPI do flakes! Perhaps some of the Asia-exclusives had some.... But I've never seen them. Good job, OPI! Were you reading my Nail Polish Wishes post when you created this? Hahahaha! Anyway, this color is totally unique and I'd call it the must-have from the collection.

Sapphire In The Snow. Dark blurple. Heh, I said blurple. I think that's what I'd call this- not entirely blue and not entirely purple, like a fusion of the two. These pictures are not entirely accurate- these types of colors are nearly impossible to photograph. In real life it's darker and much less blue- more purple with red tones.

Shim-Merry Chic. Bronzed golden shimmer base with opalescent glitter and opal flakes. Another flaky polish! Sweet! Very sparkly. I love the brown-gold shade. Again, totally unique, I don't have another polish that's anything like this.

Smitten With Mittens. Deep red with gold glitter. This is a darker and richer shade of red than the rest of the reds, and the glitter is bigger. So gorgeous. I love red glitters. So fun to look at, aren't they?

The formula on these is good. It seems thinner than the last few OPI collections. I did three coats on all of these, most only needed two but a few looked better with three (Crimson Carol, Glove You So Much, Merry Midnight). They're all mostly opaque at two, but I find that the colors have more impact at three coats. They dry fairly quickly, but this particular collection takes a little longer to dry than recent OPI collections. It seems like they've been tweaking the formula again!

Overall, I love this. I guess it doesn't take much to make me happy- just throw some glitter at me and I'll love you forever. This collection has lots of glitter! Red glitter, purple with glitter, gold with glitter- and don't forget the FLAKIES! I like the delicious pumpkin shade of Ginger Bells, I like the rich velvety look of Glove You So Much, I like the playful and bright Comet Loves Cupid. The only ones I'm really indifferent about are All A-Bordeaux The Sled and Meet and Jingle because they're not really flashy enough and they don't seem totally unique. They could have used a snowy silver or white or even a rich garland green instead of one of the reds, but I'm still satisfied.

I knew OPI had it in them.... Go OPI! Flakies, woohoo!!!

I believe the release date for this is September 1st, but I'm not 100% sure. Sometime in September.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

BB Couture For Men

BB Couture For Nails has just released a collection of polishes designed specifically for men. I am beyond excited about this. This is awesome!!

45 Caliber. Silver chrome frost. This is a very smooth, opaque, fast-drying silver chrome. It's not a completely smooth chrome, this one dries with a few brushstrokes and a bit of shimmer. It's not a super light-bright silver, either. It's a nice medium silver which is more flattering on me than the super light varieties. I love it. Some girls match their polish with their purse... But this one goes perfectly with my 21.

Blue Steel. A deep charcoal metallic frost. This is a pretty interesting shade! It's kind of chrome-like but it's really dark. Dark chromes are cool. I don't see many of those. This one is really on the frosty side, but in this particular shade, it looks right. It's a little brushstrokey and has a little sparkle. I know this is probably named after the Bluing on firearms, but I can't help but think of this:

Grenade. Dark olive green with gold shimmer. HO. LY. CRAP. This is amazing!!! This one makes it to my top favorite greens list. Grenade is nice and dark- no wimpy light green that polish companies seem to bombard us with even though we have a million already... This is deep, mossy, murky, like green with a splash of black. The gold shimmer gives it dimension and makes it look kind of antique. If they sold nail polish at the Army Surplus store, I'm sure they'd sell this one.

Military Blues. Medium/Dark blue shimmer. I say medium/dark because this one seems to change on me. It looks pretty dark when there's no light hitting it, but it becomes much brighter when the sun hits the shimmer- it lights up. Very cool. This is another frost, but this one is less frosty than Blue Steel. The frost in this one is like light veins of silvery shimmer.

Night Ops. Blackened blue with large particle shimmer. This looks like a night sky. Super vampy. It's a very dark navy blue, but it has a very slight dark purple duochrome from the shimmer. The shimmer isn't really glittery- these are really thin translucent flakes, not little metal discs or flakes like traditional glitter. While this is a blackened blue, to me it still looks blue indoors, unlike a lot of other blackened blues like Wet n Wild Craze Nocturnal or Lippmann Devil In A Blue Dress. Dark blue, yes, but still blue.

Widow Maker. Grey shimmer with subtle black glitter. Very unique! A pale warm grey with silver shimmer, somewhat similar to Zoya Harley, but this has a few particles of black glitter thrown in. Black glitter! That's something you don't see often. There's not much of it in here- you'll have to enlarge the picture to see any- but it's there and I like it. I'm not sure what in particular this is named after- I'm sure there are many, many things called Widow Maker, including a band with these two guys:

But when I see "Widowmaker", I can't help but think of my favorite thing to order at Claim Jumper.

Photo property of Julia Z.

The formula on these is great. A little on the thick side, but not unmanageable. I did three coats of each- some polishes needed only two but I like the way they look with three coats. They dry pretty fast even without topcoat. BB Couture claims to have a 4-in-1 formula (treatment, color, basecoat and topcoat) and I'm not sure if it's true, but these do dry to a shiny finish without topcoat. These come in a new style of bottle- they're heavy square bottles with the trademark metallic blue cap. They really look nice! And they stand out from the rest of the line for sure.

I absolutely adore this collection of colors for many reasons. First and most importantly, the colors rock. Plain and simple. These are great colors. Colors that I love to wear. Hopefully also colors that men love to wear.

This is a collection of polishes made for men- it even says so on the bottle. One of the things that surprised me is that they aren't mattes. It seems like matte color has become the standard for men's polish, but it doesn't have to be. I think it's like suggesting that women should only wear pink polish. I'm happy that these aren't matte.

I'm actually curious to hear from the guys on this one. I know you're out there- don't be shy! Leave a comment- tell me what you think about BB Couture Nail Polish for Men.

Even though this polish says that it's just for men, there's no reason why women can't wear it. I think sometimes those specifications are a little restrictive. People who are not really into polish will see it and think that only men can wear it. Kinda like that DuWop Toe Polish that said it's just for toes, or OPI Feet. A lot of people actually thought that you couldn't wear it on your fingers. However, I'm happy that they designated these 'For Men'- it's about time that someone thought about them when creating polish.

This collection is right up my alley. I love every single color, I love the names, I love the ideas, I love the bottles... It's just... awesome. I am really not a girly-girl... Sure, I love makeup and nail polish and perfume, but I'm really more into traditionally masculine things than I am in stereotypical feminine things. If you dislike pink polish as much as I do, this is a collection for you.

Anyway, I think I'm rambling a little. My verdict on this collection: Awesome. Two thumbs up.

BB Couture For Men can be purchased from Overall Beauty and they retail for $9 each.

EDIT: Polish or Perish is having a BB Couture for Men giveaway where you can win three of these shades- take a look!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Urban Decay Overload

Okay, this is the last day of the Urban Decay Friends and Family Sale (30% off!!) so I've swatched another large chunk of my Urban Decay collection!

Be forewarned: This is very picture heavy. Here we go...

24/7 Pencil Liners. Left to right, starting from the top: Electric, Covet, Deviant, Lust, Yeyo, Bourbon, Lucky, 1999, Stash, Zero. I love these things. I've finished maybe 7 or 8 Zero pencils....

Liquid Liners in Ecstasy and Minx. The best liners in the whole universe. Ecstasy is like Nubar Pasadena Purple in liner form. You need these.

Urban Ammo Shadow Box Palette. Left to right, starting from the top: Smog, Mildew, Oil Slick, Last Call, Grifter, Chopper, Maui Wowie, Shattered, Polyester Bride, Sin.

Wallpaper Shadow Box: Grind, Shotgun, Last Call, Asphyxia, Uzi, Shattered, Midnight Cowboy, Chopper, Smog. Lots of repeats in these palettes. Asphyxia and Shattered are duochromes, Grind, Shotgun, Uzi, Chopper and Midnight Cowboy have lots of glitter.

Skull Shadow Box: Twice Baked, Cherry, Midnight Cowboy Rides Again, Grifter, Chopper, Vert, Oil Slick, Shattered, Blunt.

Some shadows from my Vault:

Purple Haze (matte), SWF, Blaze, Foxy (matte).

Eldorado, Urb, Chronic (matte).

Sellout, Midnight Cowgirl, X (super cool duochrome).

Acid Rain, Jones, Vapor, Gash, Flash.

Wicked lipstick, Ozone lipliner (can't see it but it's there!), Gash Lipstick, Gash Lipliner.

Look at the cool Urban Decay Logo and dagger stamped into the side of the lipstick. Nice touch! These smell and taste like pipe tobacco.

Sin Primer Potion, S&M (Sephora Exclusive), Heat Deluxe Shadow, Fishnets Deluxe Shadow.

Ink For Eyes: Binge, Loaded, Empire, Pyrotechnics. Honestly, I think these are awful. They don't work for me at all. They're sheer (these swatches are four coats of liner), they never set so they melt and smudge all day, it's hard to apply them and the colors don't show up- they just look dingy and dark. I'm returning mine.

Blushes: Score, Quickie, Fetish, Exhale. Love these. These are my favorite blushes.

Big Fatty Lip Plumper, Cosmopolitan, Mai Tai, Pina Colada, Asphyxia Lip Gunk.

Ultraglide lipgloss: Deep, Heat, Gash, O, Heavy. My Deep is totally defective- the part where the cap screws on is detached from the tube and leaky :(

And, just for fun, how about a trip down memory lane?

Vintage Cream shadows: Moonshine, Gotham, Midnight Cowboy, Knee High, Go Army, Purple Haze (cool duochrome!)

Vintage Liquid Liners: Chains, Smog, Thames, Shattered, Speed, Crash, Spare Change, Urban FX, Metal Head glitter liner. Some of these were dried out. I think Thames is growing something :O

When I went to remove them, this happened and it looked pretty cool:

And, just because I can: