Tuesday, August 31, 2010

MAC Trend F/W '10 Jade Dragon and Rain of Flowers

Here they are! Please excuse the short pinky (nail broke) and my dry cuticles, eek!
Jade Dragon (two coats):
A dark green cream w/ teal glass flecks.

Rain of Flowers (three coats):
Dark purple with blue and purple glass flecks.

Close-ups (in the shade):


The formulas on these were actually great! JD is more opaque than ROF; as I mentioned above, I used two and three coats respectively. They were easy to work with and dried quickly. The glass flecks (I think) are not all that noticeable except in the sun. They're both great fall colors, but not really unique. I have a couple of other dark greens that seem similar; I will do a comparison sometime in the future. Also, both of these colors stained pretty badly when I removed them. I use Orly Bonder so the nail itself seems okay, but my fingertips are tinged with some color so be sure to use downward swipes when removing. Also, Asami had a great tip: Hold the acetone-soaked cotton pad (or whatever you use) against the nail for ten seconds and then swipe.

Hope this helps with your purchases!

Orly Royal Navy

Didn't have time to post this before the trip, but here it is, Orly Royal Navy:

It's a very pretty blue if you're looking for something kind of plain. It looks like a bright royal blue in some lights (like in the picture), but dark navy in others. There's also some turquoise microglitter that didn't get captured in the photo. This is two coats and you can see VNL. I put on a third later and it was a little better. Because the color is so dark it's really not very noticeable.

Here's my recent haul!
L to R: MAC Jade Dragon and Rain of Flowers (from the current F/W trend collection), and Vestral White from the Hello Kitty collection (found it at an outlet).

While I was gone, I received my Orly Cosmic FX polishes from Transdesign:
L to R: Space Cadet, Lunar Eclipse, Out of this World, Halley's Comet, It's Not Rocket Science, Galaxy Girl

I'm really excited to try all of these! I will try to have swatches of the MAC ones w/in the next few days and then the Orly ones after that.

Hope everyone's ready for fall!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Back From Vacay!

Hi everyone! Sorry for the lack of posts lately but I'm back now and will have lots of swatches soon! I picked up a few polishes from the MAC F/W Trend collection by Jin Soon and a Hello Kitty/MAC collab polish as well! My Orly Cosmic FX polishes were delivered Friday but I won't be getting them until tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Dior Nude Chic

I have to admit that at first the whole "mannequin hands" trend didn't appeal to me, but now I think it looks very chic and modern with the right shade. Not sure if this is it for me, but here is Dior Nude Chic:
It looks a bit more peach in some lights, but I think overall it's an okay nude for me. I might look into something a little darker and less pinkish. The application was good, but pretty sheer; this is three coats. I scored this on ebay, unfortunately I do not think it is available in stores anymore.

Hope everyone has a nice weekend!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Stila Warehouse Sale Haul

The weekend before last, Stila had an online warehouse sale and I was sold as soon as I saw the Barbie stuff! It took quite a while for them to ship (over a week), but I finally got my stuff yesterday:

Barbie Loves Stila Smudge Pots in Cobalt Clutch and Purple Pumps, Brow Duo in Dark, Lip Glaze in Dragonfruit


Malibu Barbie paint can set w/ Lash Visor Waterproof Mascara, palette w/ two eyeshadows (light blue and super pale pink) and bronzer, Lip Glaze in Malibu

I played around with everything yesterday. I'm not quite sure how I like Dragonfruit or the pale blue eyeshadow on me; I've gotten pretty tan over the summer and I think these colors don't work too well with my skin tone. I love everything else, though, especially the Brow Duo! It really lets me fill in and define my sparse eyebrows without having them look fake and drawn in.

One week until I leave for Chicago, can't wait!

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Best Chanel Jade Dupes Head To Head: Catrice vs. Milani

My recent obsession with nail polish is fairly recent, and my willingness to pay for high-end polishes is an even more recent development. So, of course, I missed out on last year's Chanel Jade. I honestly don't have a strong preference for Chanel polishes, but I do love mint greens, so I was pretty disappointed to see that it sold in the hundreds on ebay. I was pleased, however, to find out that there were some great dupes out there! I first found out about Catrice Sold Out Forever here: http://www.lushiousbeauty.nl/2010/04/catrice-nieuwe-nagellakjes-chanel-jade-dupe/
SOFE is the closest dupe in the comparison picture. It is not readily available in the US, but a friend of mine from Belgium was kind enough to send me a bottle.

Recently, though, Milani came out with a color called Dress Maker, and after seeing the comparison pics on Steph's Closet, I had to have it. It's available at CVS in a special display (or wherever Milani is sold), and also on their website. If you can't find it in a brick-and-mortar store, I highly recommend ordering it from the website as it is selling for quite a bit on ebay.

So, after buying both, I had to do my own comparison of course. Here they are, side by side (please ignore the lumpiness on my pinky, I broke it and had to use the tea bag method):





Yikes, my hands look so red in the bright sun! I have an olive skin tone so "lobster hands" usually isn't a problem for me, but these pictures would have you believe otherwise!

In the bottle, SOFE is slightly more on the sage side while DM is more minty. DM has more shimmer, SOFE's shimmer is more subtle. DM is slightly more sheer; in the pictures I am wearing three coats of DM and two coats of SOFE. Both formulas were easy to work with, but SOFE comes with a wide brush while DM has a thinner, standard brush and took a bit longer to dry (probably because it required more coats). On the nail, it's really hard to tell the difference between them except for the shimmer.

Overall, I love both colors and formulas. Of course, most people will not have to worry about which to choose since it's hard to find a place where both Milani and Catrice polishes are easy obtainable.

Hope this helps!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Diamond Cosmetics Sparkling Sherry

Hooray for Thursdays! Less than two weeks until I leave for Chicago (well, actually Milwaukee).

Today's color is a beautiful magenta foil:
I really wish my photography skills were better, or that I had a better camera, or both. This color is really just gorgeous, more purplish than in the picture. Application was a dream! Perfect consistency, very easy to work with, and I'm only wearing one coat in the picture.

It's a bit early, but hope everyone has a good weekend!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Zoya Bekka

Here's today's mani:

I really like this color! I love yellows and this one is a bright, lemony frost with faint orange flash. It looks more like a chartreuse in the bottle but the greenish tint doesn't show up on the nail. As much as I love the color, the formula left something to be desired. Application was streaky and even after three coats there's still a bit of visible nail line. It also took quite a while to dry. Still, it's such a sunny, happy color that I can't resist!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Light Blue Comparison

I love blues and I love pastels! I have a fair number of pastel blues in my collection so I thought I'd do a comparison.

In the bottles:

L to R: Diamond Cosmetics Oh Tiff!, DC Tranquility, OPI What's With The Cattitude? (my doggy chewed the cap!), Studio M Whose That Girl/Color Club Take Me To Your Chateau (same company, same polish, different bottles), Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Dive Deeper (I believe this is from the limited-edition Tracy Reese collection, the one that included Hidden Treasure)

On the fingers:

Thumb to pinky (same as the order of the bottles): Diamond Cosmetics Oh Tiff!, DC Tranquility, OPI What's With The Cattitude?, Studio M Whose That Girl/Color Club Take Me To Your Chateau, Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Dive Deeper

With Dive Deeper on top;

Too bad you can't really see the shimmer effect!

Oh Tiff! is a true Tiffany blue, kind of a pastel blue-green or aqua. In fact, I put my thumb against a Tiffany box and it really looks like the exact shade to me, although the lighting here isn't that great right now. There's some kind of secret shimmer in it but it's pretty much impossible to see, even in the sun. I've mentioned this one in a previous post already but the application is good. A tiny bit streaky, but in two coats it was perfect.

Tranquility is bluer than Oh Tiff!, closer to a robin's egg blue but still a bit greenish compared to Cattitude. Application was similar to OT, but better. Two coats in the picture.

What's With The Cattitude? is a true robin's egg blue. This one is more of a jelly than a cream, I'd say. It was more sheer than the others (except Dive Deeper) and a bit more watery. Two coats was fine for me, though.

Take Me To Your Chateau is my favorite of the five right now, I think. It's a stark, mod pale blue with absolutely no shimmer or anything. I've been looking for something like this for a while, something similar to Hard Candy Sky, and I think this is it! Application on this one was perfect! I actually only used one coat of this one, and it dried very quickly. The finish was almost satin, so it definitely could use a top coat, although I did apply all of these alone without base or top coat.

Dive Deeper is a sheer, pearlescent pale blue with iridescent microglitter. I was excited to try it because it's so pretty in the bottle, but I was really disappointed. I used two coats in the picture but it could have used a third (nail line was still visible). Also, it never dried! I did put it on my pinky so maybe I painted it on a bit thick, but even when I put on a thin coat over the other colors it took quite a while.

Oh Tiff against a Tiffany box:

Very similar, no? It's kind of hard to compare because the box is textured while the nail polish is glossy. Oh Tiff! dries darker on the nail than it shows in the bottle. I believe China Glaze For Audrey is similar but a bit darker.

Hope this helped!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Vegas Haul

Hello everyone, back from Vegas! While I was there I stopped by the outlets and picked up some polishes. (Dior Sweet Orange is also included even though I bought it a little while ago):


Clockwise: American Apparel Mouse, Hassid, Butter, L'Esprit, Office, Hunter; MAC Beyond Jealous and Rich, Dark, Delicious; Chanel Paradoxal; Dior Sweet Orange


...and the elusive Dior Lemon Balm! I've wanted this for a few weeks now but of course it was sold out everywhere and selling for almost twice the retail on ebay. Luckily I won it for just a little more than retail!

I am super excited to try Lemon Balm of course, and Paradoxal is my first Chanel polish. Honestly, I don't necessarily think that high-end polishes are better than drugstore brands and I am often completely satisfied with cheaper dupes, but both the Dior colors and the Chanel are quite unique; I was unable to find anything just like them.

Okay, now I'm really going to try not to buy anymore until the next RBL sale, which I suspect is in December. It's only four months, right??