Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Zoya Wicked and Wonderful Collections Fall 2010

They're here!! Yay! Zoya has been teasing everyone one picture at a time... but now they're here in all of their sparkly fall glory.

First up- Wonderful (the cremes).

Burke. Kind of a... soft red-mulberry creme... The only one out of the entire fall line I'm not crazy about. Berry shades just don't catch my eye for some reason. This one has a very autumnal look to it though, I think it's the softness. And I always thought the name of this polish was a naughty British slang... isn't it? Hehe.

Cola. A warm red-toned brown creme. It seems more red than brown on my skintone, but in the bottle it looks more brown than red. It also looks darker on me than it seems in the bottle. I think the name Cola suits this... it sort of reminds me of Dr. Pepper!

Kelly. This is my favorite from Wonderful. It's amazing. It's a medium borderline dark grey creme but it has purple tones to it. In certain lights it looks more purple than grey, and in others it seems pure neutral grey. Definitely my new favorite grey. Even looks good on my skintone, and I don't think I usually pull off grey all that well (doesn't stop me from wearing them, ha!). And you know what? I'm glad this color isn't green. Kelly green would have been too obvious! I'm also glad that Zoya Jade is red and not green... but back on topic...

Shawn. Oooooh. Here's the green. And what a nice green! It's a little darker for fall, not quite as dark as Envy or something like Orly Enchanted Forest. It's yellow based and a little murky. These types of greens are usually my favorite. Yellowy and murky. Is it just me or has Zoya done a green in every collection this year? Hmm... I don't think there was one in Spring, but it seems like there have been a lot lately!

Stacy. A purple burgundy... Not quite berry... seems more wine to me than berry but mostly purple toned. It deepens with every coat... I'm noticing that my ring finger is lighter than all the others... Somehow I think I missed the second coat on that nail....

Kristi. Pure red. I really like this. I have actually been wearing this for the past couple days and only took it off to swatch Wicked! It's bright but not super bright. More on the medium side. Really crisp looking.

That's it for the creme portion of this collection... now on to the glitter! Zoya Wicked!

Carrie Ann. This one is so sparkly my camera freaked out instead of focusing! It's a light red, cool toned, PACKED with sparkles. Too small to be plain glitter, more like a really reflective glass fleck. Very very sparkly.

Cheryl. You know, it's bound to happen when every polish is named a person's name... Sometimes you get the name of a person you don't want to be reminded of! But anyway... I think I'd have to call this my favorite from Wicked. It's a warm rustic chestnut type of shade. Brown with lots of reddish shimmer/glitter/glass fleck. It's divine. Divine Brown. Hee hee. Way to keep it classy, Scrangie. But seriously... this color is gorgeous, it's almost a duochrome there's so much flashy sparkle in it!

Edyta. Another green! Well, sort of green. This is like green plus. Green and bronze and smoke. Pretty complex. Very sparkly in the sunlight. Kinda like a cross between China Glaze Gussied-Up Green and that awesome Bourjois that looks like starling feathers.

Julieanne. But then... you get one named after someone you really like! This one is a really wicked cool dark purple duochrome glitter. I know, it looks so blue in my pictures, but it's actually purple. It's like if Zoya Mimi and OPI Designer Series Mystery had a baby. Or maybe LA Girl Groupie and Color Club With Abandon? It's a unique shade and kinda hard to describe! Glittery, dark, purple, duochromey with gold and copper and a little green.

Karina. Second picture (indoors) shows the color truer. Another sparkly red, this one is deeper and richer than Carrie Ann. Still cool toned to my eye. I think I prefer this one, it has more of a fall feeling.

Kym. Ahh. This makes me so relaxed to look at. It's the color of fall. The leaves changing... clothes getting heavier... apples and maple leaves. *sigh* So pretty.

The formula on these was good. The Wonderful cremes were all perfect- nice even texture, great coverage (I only did two coats and didn't need a third at all) and quick dry time. The Wicked glitters were a bit on the thick side and had a much longer dry time than the cremes. Coverage was still good at two coats, but I found that they looked a little dull without topcoat so I applied topcoat for my swatches.

The glitter in the Wickeds is really nice. It's a bit like the Sparkle collection but they seem less foily and more dense glass fleck. So hard to describe! A little like the Sally Hansen HD ones... You know those big shiny particles that have a duochrome look to them? It's like that in these. Gorgeous, just totally and absolutely gorgeous. Zoya is really on a roll with these amazing sparkle/glitter/foily/glass fleck hybrid shades. I really hope they do more in the future because they all look STUNNING!

And I can't give the glitters all the praise, cause the cremes were great too. Perfect fall colors. Great formula. Good variety. Notice how in each set of cremes and shimmers they do three interesting colors and three more conservative shades? I kinda like how they do that- they don't ignore us hardcore polish addicts- they seem to try to cater to the more traditional less adventurous crowd and the nailies at the same time. I appreciate that.

So... there it is. Zoya fall 2010. I have no complaints, I'm actually really content with both these sets of colors, they had everything I wanted for fall! Now if October would get here already...

(These were sent to me for review.)

Red Creme Spam

I'm actually really liking red cremes lately. I know... where is Scrangie and what have I done with her? So why not have some red creme spam?

Maybelline Express Finish Speedy Hot Tamale

Essie Pama

Chanel Lotus Rouge

MAC Kid Orange (okay... it's orange, but it's reddish orange!)

Maybelline Wet Shine Cherry Rain

Essie Red Nouveau

Misa Single and Ready To Limbo

Zoya America

Rescue beauty Lounge Killa Red (with bubbles and decal)

BB Couture Poppy Passion

Um... so now I've just realized that I don't have any more pictures of red cremes that I haven't already posted!


Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Sneak preview of Illamasqua contest winners!

Illamasqua has chosen the winners of their polish design contest! Since they received so many amazing entries (over 6,000!) they couldn't pick just one- they chose three winners!

I have the names and pictures of the bottles below. Once I have more info I'll be sure to post it! But, WOW, these look awesome. I'm especially digging Eclipse. I can not wait to see how these look on the nail. Congratulations to all the winners!

"Shrapnel" by Loren Perry – a pink-based metallic copper inspired by the dazzling shine of a new penny and a beautiful pair of copper shoes she owns.

Raindrops by Ann Black – a creamy pale grey with a sheer silver sparkle inspired by watching raindrops running down the window while riding the monorail in Seattle. [her blog post is at]

Eclipse by Dami Lawai – a deep blue/purple/grey that reflects the theatricality of a lunar eclipse.

(These are currently in production and will be available in October)

Monday, June 21, 2010

Essie The Summer Collection 2010

I think this collection is actually called "The Summer Collection." Seriously! It's printed on the little display box and everything.

Anyway, this collection was one heck of a surprise. You will see why shortly....

Demure Vixen. What a strange color. Not in a bad way, though! It's a mauvey, putty-ish light purple but it has a really interesting contrasting violet shimmer. They describe it as a duochrome, I don't think I'd quite call it a duochrome, but it does have competing base and shimmer- it's like they don't look like they're part of one polish, you see both the base color and the shimmer separately, fighting for attention. I rather like it.

Miss Matched. A milky pale lavender-toned pink. Not bad but not really that interesting. Doesn't particularly say 'summer' to me either. The soft lavender shade is even paler than all the pastel ones we've been seeing lately, and it has a lot more pink to it.

Knockout Pout. Okay, this is where things get weird. You see the color in the bottle? It is a pale milky pink. Looks like the standard Essie sheer pink. I was not really enthusiastic about swatching it, but I'm glad I did.. because.. when you open the bottle and put it on, it's really BRIGHT NEON PINK!! Yeah, seriously!! Isn't that crazy??? I was so confused. Anyway, this particular neon pink is of the light variety very much like China Glaze Shocking Pink.

Haute As Hello. This was the same way as Knockout Pout. I'm looking at the bottle this whole time thinking, "More pastels for summer? Didn't we just see this same color in Spring?" and then I open the bottle to apply it... And it turns out it's semi-neon orange coral. That was a really nice surprise. I was pretty relieved to see it wasn't another pastel. So... this color... coral. This says coral to me, but it's very orange toned. Call it coral, salmon, orange-pink... This shade has a strange brightness. It's bold and punchy but it doesn't seem like a 'true' neon to me. It does dry matte, interestingly enough, so maybe it does have some neon pigment in it. You know what this reminds me of? My new Make Up For Ever eyeshadow in #5.

Pretty Edgy. Hell. Yes. OMG. I can't believe I'm seeing this. Essie did a true green! Finally! I've been really hoping for this for a long time! This particular shade did not disappoint. It is a medium yellow-toned grass green/leaf green creme. Very obvious green. Noticeable. Fresh looking. The only downside is I don't think it suits my skintone particularly well- makes my hands take on a yellow cast. But, that doesn't really bother me... I like this color too much to care.

Vermillionaire. I always thought vermilion was redder. But this color is pure orange. Sweet, sweet orange. I have a thing for orange polish. Maybe it's my obsession with Halloween or fall or pumpkins... but I love orange. Very happy about this shade. It's very very bright. I don't think this one is a 'true' neon either because it lacks that bright burning glow that makes neons special, but it is bright. Very rich color.

The formula was good. On the thin side but it didn't give me any trouble. The brushes seemed bigger than the winter collection but still small- no Pro-Wide style brushes here! I did three coats of all, I think they needed the three coats. Vermillionaire and Knockout Pout would be fine with two, but I had a little visible nail line on the others. Dry time was very good. Some of these were mostly dry by the time I was done taking the picture.

This collection really was a surprise. I was looking at the polishes in the box thinking... Summer collection... four pale/sheers in a summer collection? Where's the color? At least there's a green. And then I swatched it. There was much confusion and rejoicing. No sheers. One or two pale colors, but also some neon! Haute as Hello is pretty unique. I have orangey corals, but none seem to have that neon glow to them. I'm sure there are matches for the rest of the colors here, maybe not Demure Vixen, that seems pretty unique too... but I can't think of any at the moment. Oh yeah, China Glaze Shocking Pink and Knockout Pout seemed a little similar to me. If I'm remembering my China Glaze neons correctly... Shocking Pink was the light pink creme one, right? I'm probably not even remembering the right one. But I do prefer the formula of the Essie for this particular shade anyway.

So... Essie finally did a green. A real green, not pastel and not sheer. That's pretty cool. When are they going to bring Dominica Green back? *pokes Essie*

(These were sent to me for review.)

Friday, June 18, 2010

BB Couture Vampy Varnish Collection

I know this came out ages ago... I have been wanting to post it but I've had such crazy anxiety about it. Let me explain my messed up head... This collection isn't like some regular collection the mostly faceless polish companies spit out every three months. This collection is special and important because it was designed by not just a fellow blogger but a friend. Therefore, it deserves perfect pictures.. special attention to detail... Keen observation... I've actually been afraid I'd mess up my review or pictures and miss some great detail that the creator intended to be noticed, or maybe my pictures would be bad and I wouldn't do the polishes justice. So yes... performance anxiety... I haz it. I'm like this with anything special. I don't even consider myself a perfectionist, but if it's something someone I know made I always want to get it just right.

But, in honor of Kelly aka Vampy Varnish's birthday, here it is, the BB Couture collection she created.

Kelly's Green. A vintage muted avocado green base with flecks of silver, pale iridescent green and black microglitter. You may need to enlarge to see the black glitter. The glitter particles are small and don't take center stage in this polish- it works as a whole package and gives me them impression of stones. Are there green stones? Like river rocks with veins of granite.

Mendocino Midnight. A very tricky polish. Sometimes I think it looks mostly green... sometimes I think it looks grey-green... sometimes it looks like blue-green with a faint pink flash. It's deep and dark and does have a subtle pink shimmer to it, and to make it even more interesting it's packed with green and gold and blue slightly iridescent glitter. Very complex.

Napa Valley Red. Now this is a red I can love. It is slightly deeper than this in real life but I wanted to be able to capture all of the glittery goodness of this polish in bright light. It's a deep wine red jelly base with a little bit of a purple undertone and lots of sparkly pink-toned red glitter. When I look at it in direct light I can even see very tiny flashes of violet sparkle. This is the type of color I think of when I hear 'vampy'.

Redwood Forest. My picture makes this look more blue-toned than it really is. In real life it's more vibrant and has a lot more yellow to it. It's a medium saturated forest green with a sprinkling of fine silvery glitter. Some of the glitter looks blue to me, but I can't tell if it's actually blue glitter if it's cause I'm looking at it through green polish. Either way, it's a dream color for me. Glittery forest green. I've been looking for a color like this for a long time! It's really beautiful, I don't think my picture captures it at all. I really need to re-do this one again. It keeps coming out so blue!

Union Square. Super super sparkly bronzed taupe foil. This one is hard for me to describe! Being a foil, it's made up of little metallic particles, and this has a few different colors swirling around to make one color on the nail. It has some lighter champagne colored flecks, some deeper bronze colored ones and some in-between taupe gold ones. The end result is this shimmering earth toned foil.

Vampy Varnish. The crown jewel of the collection. Seriously. This is *amazing*. I have put a massive dent in my bottle of this, I even wore it back-to-back for almost two weeks. How do I describe this? The base is a deep, dark, foreboding green jelly- deeper and darker than NARS Zulu. It has glitter. Boy, does it ever have glitter. It has blue glitter. It has green glitter. It has gold glitter and even what looks to be a tiny bit of silver glitter. And it sparkles, majorly. The sparkling glitter lights up the vampy green base and makes a really nice contrast. I love when there are jelly polishes with glitter because you can see the glitter in the lower layers of the polish and it adds a lot of depth and just looks freakin' sweet. This is like the forest in summer on a moonless midnight. All you can see are the flashes of the fireflies against dark green foliage.

The formula on these was good. BB Couture standard, pretty much. Not thick, not thin, nice medium texture. I did three coats of all and that was pretty much perfect. You could do two coats with most of these, but I think the third coat added more depth and color to the glittery dark shades. Dry time is a little longer than I'm used to, but not really what I'd call long. Longer than OPI (with Seche) but not anywhere near as long as something like Orly or Barielle. I'd say about half an hour for complete dryness. Because the glitter is so fine, removal wasn't too difficult either. All around solid formula, good bottles and brushes, good wear time.

I think it goes without saying that I love this collection. I mean, look at it... It's all green and glitter! And it's unique! The only polish in this collection that I can think of something similar is Kelly's Green. Golf Pro looks a little bit like Kelly's Green but it's definitely not a match, and it came out months after... I wonder if it was an early prototype? Now I'm curious. But anyway, all around amazing collection. It seems like Kelly and I have similar taste because I'm majorly digging these. I think she did a great job on these.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Illamasqua Spam

I feel like posting some massive Illamasqua spam. They stole my heart the minute I saw their products and have easily made my top five favorite brands.... Awesome colors... awesome name... formula like liquid glass... *dreamy sigh* I'm in an Illamasqua mood right now.

I might have posted some of these before, I can't remember.

Boo! Amazing purple, blue, pink and gold-ish multi glitter. Looks a bajillion times less blue in real life. More purple. Purple glitter. It's not a match to any of the recent purple-pink-blue glitter combination polishes as far as I can tell. This is unique- the glitter is teeny tiny and pretty sparse. Very sparkly, though. Possibly better for layering- this is four coats.

Boo over Sally Hansen Purple Heart. These Halloween ones (Boo and Hiss) were meant to be paired with Baptiste and Boosh for layering. I didn't have either at the time I took these pictures so I grabbed the nearest purple shimmer and tried layering. Looks awesome. Looks even better over black, I think. I don't have a picture of that, though.

Hiss! I don't have another glitter like this! It's gold based with really flashy pieces of hot pink and more subtle dark purple, blue and yellowy looking particles. The pink and gold seem dominant on me. Again, über sparkly, flashy, colorful but a bit sparse. Four coats pictured here.

Hiss over Wet n Wild Black. One coat over black looks pretty dense, doesn't it? But it doesn't seems as dense alone. Maybe I need to shake better next time. I love this even more over black. The glitter stays crisp and shiny looking.

Caress. Pastel baby blue creme. Love this. I had a polish like this in the 90s I use to love. Might have been a Hard Candy... Memory fails me. But yep, not too many other ways I can describe this other than stark creamy baby blue. Caress and Wink (below) were from the 2010 Spring collection.

Wink. This picture didn't come out so good. Hm. It's a pale lilac creme. Very white-based. Not as blue in real life. Pretty and delicate yet edgy because of the stark white crisp obviousness of it.

Force. AHHHH!!!! How hot is this?! It's super bold crayola blue. It's rich and pigmented and can change looks depending on the lighting. Here in the sunlight it looks almost neon bright, but indoors it tones down to a saturated and slightly darker looking blue. I layered Sally Hansen Hidden Treasure over this and it was one of the coolest flaky-layering combos I've ever done, couldn't stop looking at it. The girl at the museum with the chipped off gold glitter polish even raved over it when she was putting on my wristband! (Force, Jo'Mina and Prism are all from the current Summer 2010 collection- Body Electrics)

Jo'Mina (direct sunlight, outdoors)

Jo'Mina (ambient natural light, indoors). I am really upset about this one. Not about the polish, but about the pictures. I've been holding off on posting the Body Electrics collection because I couldn't get a good picture of this. It is extremely beautiful and it deserves an accurate representation. I'm failing to achieve that, so... Picture it less blue (getting tired of me saying that yet?), more red toned, more saturated and very IN YOUR FACE VIBRANT PURPLE!! It seems so much like a pastel is light but I wouldn't call it a pastel... but in real life it's just so electric looking! I can't even describe it. Glowy light purple. I've never seen another polish like it.

Prism. Sheer white pearl with super strong blue iridescence/duochrome and subtle pink/green duochrome. Like mother of pearl. Also reminds me of a polish I had in the 90s. The 90s were a good time for polish. So much cool stuff back then. But... this is now and Prism is right here on the screen so I guess I should get back on topic... Prism seemed like it would be really sheer, but it's not really. First coat is very sheer but it builds nicely. I like the way it looks alone and I have worn it alone. This is three coats, you can see visible nail line but not too bad. I do four when I wear it.

Prism over Force. No words. Too pretty.

Prism over Jo'Mina. It accentuates the purple-ness of it and some of the duochrome shows green. Love.

Collide. Now this is what it's like when worlds collide.... Yes. When worlds collide, they become neon pink.

Grab. Interesting bright fuchsia-pink. Really rich looking. Purple toned. Creamy.

Hectic. Have I posted this one? I swear I've posted this one. It's amazing. Murky olive green. Right up my alley. Perfection.

DWS. This one was a surprise gift from a buddy and it quickly became my favorite light grey. It goes really well with my skintone. Applies like butter. Very glossy.

Whack. Really glowy bright jelly-ish almost neon orange. Very noticeable. Maybe a little bit of a red tomato or coral undertone to this. Mainly orange. Extremely loud orange.

Propaganda. Super dark blue jelly. A little bit like NARS Midnight Express. I made a huge mess when applying this one. It was comedic. I knocked over my bottle of remover and it covered my entire kitchen table. Went on the floor. Melted my pen. Only messed up the mani a little bit!

Smash. HULK SMASH!!!!!! I wanna say that when I wear this. Another kickass green from Illamasqua. There's nothing I don't like about this. I especially like the name... Head over heels I've fit in before... Now I don't want to do it no more... I just want to be who I want to be... Guess that's hard for others to see... (That was kinda the theme song of my life for a while!)

Strike. Metallic aqua blue. A little frosty, actually. Sparkly and frosty. And blue.

Baptiste. Last but not least... Baptiste. I made a rhyme! I can't think of anything to say about this polish. It leaves me speechless. It's so pretty. Almost too pretty. Iridescent shimmery vampy multidimensional purple. *drool*

Can't wait to see what colors Illamasqua will do next. Hopefully they'll do more of those incredible glitters for Halloween... Only four months away... I'm crossing my fingers!

(This post contains items that were sent to me for review.)