Friday, 26 August 2011

Orly Fancy Fuchsia

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I'm still feeling lazy and tomorrow I'll be heading for the snow - Hooray!

The first photo is 2 coats of FF - perfect application, nice thick opaque Orly formula. Very bright pink, my camera played it down majorly. This would look hot with a tan in the summer. In zee zecond pic I was trying out CG Solar Flare (on thumb and ring funger) and CG Glam (pink glitter on rest of my fingers). Fun times.

I doubt you'll hear from me for a week, tear. I shall miss blogging

xxx NPA

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Color Club Untamned Luxury

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Today I'm feeling short and sweet. Here's some shots of Untamned Luxury from the collection of the same name.

 All the pics were taken indoors because the sun didn't want to play ball that day! I used 3 coats & there is a bit of VNL but it looks ok and I'm fairly confident ridge filler would make this opaque. It's a really cool blue green jelly (a BRIGHT SEA GREEN?) with lots of glitter packed in. It does dry ultra gritty so I recommend 2 layers of top coat.

I love this polish, she's a gem :)

xxx Michaela

Monday, 22 August 2011

China Glaze Metro Collection Swatches & Review Part 2 - Shimmah & Glittah!

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Hehehehe... (cackles) on to the fun half of the collection!

 CG in the City has a clear base, with bronze, silver & purple (I think, it's hard to tell) glitter pieces in it. I think they call it micro-glitter (very fine pieces). Quite pretty, takes 3-4 coats to be opaque so it'll make a good layering polish. I have seen it over Urban Night and it looks very pretty!

 Skyscraper is like Dorothy Who?'s older, darker sister! A dark blue jelly base, with navy & silver micro-glitter (same size as in CG in the City). Only 2-3 coats to be opaque hooray! I used 3 in the photo above but if I wasn't photographing it I could have left it at 2 coats. Not at all gritty, either.

Midtown Magic is an extremely dark plum (so appears dark brown) with gold glass fleck like glitter/shimmer throughout. This reminds me of Side Saddle but they are not at the same.Side Saddle is winey in colour  & only has shimmer, no glitter flecks. MM is gorgeous & sophisticated! 2 coat was perfection.

Trendsetter is one of those ugly colours that I adore!!! Sort of a mustard but darker, murkier, a bit more green to it than the usual mustard offerings. And it has glass fleck shimmer going on!!!! Same style as Classic Camel, which I LOVED! 2 coater also.

The formulas were awesome on these 4 too. On the thick side but very manoeuvrable and fantastic pigmentation. I wish all CG's were like this! Fingers crossed for future releases. I have no regrets about these guys & would recommend them to everyone!

xxx Michaela

P.S I had a very sad Sunday evening; had to perform a lengthy Nubbin-ectomy on all my nails because most of them had split below the tip :( The upside? Starting tomorrow I will be starting THE NUBBIN DIARIES! Basically a series of posts trying out polish looks for fellow nubbin-ites (solidarity!) & tracking the regrowth & maintenance of my nails. They have never been this short before :(
But, do not fear ye of feminine, lengthy nails! I have lots of swatches in the vault from my last few hauls & shall be showcasing them also.

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Jelly Sandwich Attempt #1

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Greetings faithful readers,

Everyone seems to be doing jelly sandwiches lately so I had to join in & try it out. BTW a few weeks before I started the blog I wanted to see what putting a glitter under OPI Do You Think I'm Tex-y? would look like (without ever seeing or knowing what a jelly sandwich was) and my sister talked me out of it. I'll have to tell her it's actually all the rage. Ha! Shum-a-lum-a-lum, kiss my bum! Oh primary school, how sophisticated our comebacks were!

Here's 2 coats of OPI Last Friday Night sandwiched either side with 2 coats of BYS Blue Bang & China Glaze Broken Hearted on my thumb and ring fingers as an accent. I topped it with Seche Vite which accounts for the tip shrinkage - I always get that when there are too many layers of polish under the SV. It's not usually too bad if it's a 2 coater or a thin 3 coater.


flash - shows the glitter more clearly

Click the photos for a better view. It's not the best first attempt, ideally I would have just put one coat of Blue Bang on top; but I had to put 2 layers over Last Friday Night because I did an extra thick coat on my of my fingers and it looked stupid, so I had to add another layer to all the rest. I love how awesome LFN is for layering, whenever blues need extra POW! I added the Broken Hearted crackle cos my I buggered up the left thumb and didn't want to start over on it!!!

Hope your weekend was full of scrummy food. I just had some heavenly tiramisu!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, 20 August 2011

China Glaze Metro Collection Swatches & Review Part 1 - Cremes

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Hey ladies
If you remember I was really bummed when I saw the promo shots for this collection. Then some swatches started popping up and I was dead keen! So keen that I got 8/12! That's a bit insane of me but being only $3 US I felt very justified. Come on NZ - price some polish under $10

Street Chic is a brown taupe, I found it quite chocolate for a taupe. Like creamy milk chocolate but a bit greyer. Will have to compare it to OPI You Don't Know Jacques and Over The Taupe, perhaps even Misa Coffee Break?

Westside Warrior is a military-esque green but a bit greener & less dusky compared with OPI Uh-Oh, Roll Down The Window IMO. I really like it. Again with the yellow toned green thank you China Glaze.

Urban Night, I was fairly excited for. Every collection this fall seems to have a dark purple like this in it. But this is the brightest of them all. I didn't bother with Honk If You Love OPI because I already had Essie Carry On and I couldn't take another almost black purple creme!!! Urban night definitely has some red to it, looks a bit plummy. It was LOVE at first swatch...

Traffic Jam is a bright, rich fuchsia pink creme. Just beautiful. I doubt it is at all unique but it is definitely a staple you need!

Okay, on to the formula and application. AMAZING. These four could have been pulled off with 1 coat they are that pigmented & opaque. I did 2 of them all though, for swatching purposes (and because I'm no application expert!). The formula is on the thick side but super manoeuvrable. The brushes are wonderful too. Most of my nails only need 2 swipes.

Next time I will post the shimmahs & glitters!!!!
Do these cremes make you melt, like me? 

xxx NPA

Friday, 19 August 2011

OPI Touring America Swatches & Review

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I love road trips! The snacks, the toilet stops (sometimes on the side of the road), the drinking (Undie 500 you were a beaut, nothing like travelling to Dunedin with a keg of ice breaker to keep 8 girls company!), the sun, the tunes!

The point is, this collection already had a head start with me. I bought 6 of the 12 polishes released - I tried to stay clear of the super dark colours that really just look black at the end of the day & sadly I also left out the greys. Part of me always wants more, the other part says - 'you have a few already & grey isn't really your colour' - and I might end up splurging on the more yellow toned one - Suzi takes the wheel, is it?

Anyway here are the ones I did buy! (from Sale Nail)
First shot is flash or in sunlight
Second is indoor

A-taupe The Space Needle
Isn't what I would class as a taupe, though I'm fairly sure the simply named this for the pun! It has a military camo feel to me. Like the browny/green colour they have on fatigues. It has some yellow in it so it went quite nicely with my skin tone. You know I'm a fan because it is fugly!!! I think this was only 2 coats, no problem with the formula, but in the bottle the base colour separates (like most of my Barielle polishes do) from the rest of the polish so it looks a bit unappealing. It dried to a fairly glossy finish.

Uh-Oh, Roll Down The Window
Has a fantastic name! This is the military green-esque colour most fall collections seem to have this year. It has a bit of olive in it too I think and I adore it! It's so awesome to have yellow toned greens around - the last wee while has been all about blue greens & teals, which I never shine in - still wear though! Same application and formula separation as the first. A-taupe & this look like they are related base colour wise, they complement each other really well and I think I will have to incorporate them into a mani together. I love the dusty grey factor both have.

Road House Blues
Is a beautiful dark blue - past navy - with a decent amount of purple in it. It is a creme of course like the two above. Nice application, 2 coats. Have you noticed that I've started cleaning my cuticles up when I swatch?! This is a big deal for me considering my motto is "Near enough is good enough" - shocking I know but I am deeply lazy! RHB has been likened to OPI Sapphire in the Snow excepting that SINTS has noticeably more purple in it. I had been lemming it for a long time & this has sort of sorted me out! SINTS is pretty much impossible to find anyway. I love that RHB manages to stay looking blue & never black (to the discernible eye, ie. not your boyfriend) even in low light.

Are We There Yet?
Is a wee bit pinker than the photo shows but as my camera despises corals & oranges this is the best I could get; the flash just made it crazy pink! So this is an orange/peach leaning coral shimmer. Very pretty, the shimmer is kind of gold but also appears to be coral to me. It is a fairly subtle shimmer, but noticeable in the sun. I needed 3 coats because it is thin formula with very average pigmentation :( Lots of bloggers have mentioned that they got cuticle drag if they didn't wait for ages in between coats but happily, I didn't have that problem!

I Eat Mainely Lobster
Another coral shimmer, but this one is darker & pinker. I was so annoyed at how similar this was to Misa Bop Til You Drop that I didn't even swatch it! They both even needed 3 coats. I did feel that when I compared them Misa looked a touch pinker but I couldn't be sure. The shimmer is even the same in these guys! It did look nice on me though!

Color To Diner For
A beautiful dusky red shimmer that I would describe as a ruby wine with gold shimmah! Another great colour for warm skin tones!!! Thank you OPI! It did need 3 coats but the application was easy IMO. Sorry about the weird 2nd pic - I didn't edit it "officially" so what I rotated to be horizontal ended up looking like that.

Overall, I am very happy with this collection. Yes, it would have been nice for the shimmers to be more opaque/pigmented but most of my OPIs end up being 3 coaters unless I'm on fire with my manicuring skilled so it isn't really a problem.  I really loved the cremes, the corals weren't that special at the end of the day but they are flattering and great for summer. CTDF is a great addition to my collection in that I have nothing like it!

How do you feel about this Autumn offering from OPI? Anyone not a fan?

xxx NPA

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Heaven & Pink Wednesday

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I'm never going to worry about the 'after life' ever again. I've already had my reward here on earth. Funnily enough it came in the form of 2 massive hauls arriving on the same day!

L-R Top Row: CC Yum Gum, Wicked Sweet, CC White Cap, Life              Top Centre: OPI I Eat Mainely Lobster
Preserver, Solar Flare, Glam                                                                               2nd Row L-R: Sheer Your Toys, Are We There Yet?,
Middle Row: CC Wild Orchid, CG Trendsetter, Westside Warrior,            Color To Diner For, Zoya Gemma
Urban Night, CG In The City, Skyscraper, Street Chic, CC Untamed         Bottom Centre: Uh-Oh Roll Down The Window
Luxury                                                                                                                  Bottom Row L-R: A-taupe The Space Needle
Bottom Row: CG Midtown Magic, Traffic Jam, Grape Pop, High                Roadhouse Blues
Hopes, Sugar High, Orly Fancy Fuchsia

Boo-yah! Amongst all this general polish goodness I have enamels from the Fall Collections: OPI Touring America & China Glaze Metro. I think the next week or two will be a lot of fun!

I got slack yesterday & forgot to post a Pink Wednesday, so here it is, better late than never!

Nubar Sphinx Purple - 3 coats

Nubar Sphinx Purple using flash
I know Nubar included Sphinx Purple in their purple Cleopatra collection but this is way more of a pink! In person it is sooooo gorgeous it really glows. In my opinion it's not really a fuchsia - I'd classify it as a purple pink (the same thing I know but trust me!). Anyway it's on the thin side and needed 3 coats to get to this opacity & if you hadn't already noticed there's a small amount of VNL! But I'm sure a base of ridge filler would sort that out. I love it! Reminds me I must wear it again soon - but so many new polishes - where to begin?!

xxx NPA

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

CND Perfectly Bare Color & Effect Swatch

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Brrrrrrrrrr, it's cold in here. There must be an Antartic chill in the air.
I have never been so cold in Auckland in my life! It's kind of nice/we don't get to enjoy the snow so I'd like the sunshine to come back now please! I'm quite jealous that Wellington has so much snow!!!!

I bought CND The Look Spring/Summer 2011 which came with Perfectly Bare - a beige creme nude & co-ordinating shimmer/sparkle effect. This is the first CND I've ever tried so I was excited and had high hopes.
So what did I think?

The pics were taken indoors, without flash with 1 coat colour & one coat effect.

I like it - incredibly pigmented & opaque - a one coater! Perfectly Bare is a beige with a hint of pink in it. I wouldn't recommend it to people with yellow undertones. I've got a bit more warmth in my skin but my mum's completely olive and it was pretty unflattering. The brush was a bit iffy, felt like it was a bit stiff. The formula was pretty darn thick, but the cap wasn't screwed on tightly enough & a bit of my colour bottle leaked in transit so, it might not be an accurate example of the polish formula. The effect is a slightly milky transparent shimmer with little irregular shaped opalescent flecks.It helps to soften the starkness of the beige (only because it is completely opaque unlike most nudes!!!!).

I will definitely be buying more CNDs in the future. I used to be put off by the 0.33 oz bottles but now I know they are 1 coaters I won't mind spending the money!

xxx NPA

P.S. Does anyone have any favourite CNDs to recommend?

Monday, 15 August 2011

OPI Grape... Set... Match Swatch & Review

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I just realised I hadn't posted this beaut yet, so I thought I'd better get it up quick!

Indoors no flash

Sunlight - shows blue shimmer duochrome

Indoors without flash - shows pink shimmer duochrome

I was pleasantly surprised by GSM from the Wimbledon leg of the Serena Glam Slam releases. It looked so gorgeous in the swatches I had seen & ta da... it looked gorgeous in person too! It has the same formula/finish as OPI Ink but it is a Violet with duochrome shimmer. In sunlight the blue shimmer was most obvious, but in the shade I saw a lot more of the pretty pink shimmer! The pinkiness warms the violet up (kind of makes it look like there is some red in the formula) so it actually suits more skintone - bonus! I would have worn it anyway!!! This was 3 coats, but I could have got away with 2.
The one downside? The brush was crazy wide. First I just thought OPI had redesigned their Prowide brushes. Then upon application I realised it just must be a brush anomaly. It must have been squished extra tight when attached to the brush end because it was barely able to fit down the neck of the bottle & I could only apply it to my pinkie side on (that covered it in 1 stroke!) or the whole tip of my pinkie would have been covered in polish. It was kind of a mission but very entertaining to my friend to watch me apply, then clean-up!
While this made me a bit reluctant to wear GSM again, the formula was lovely & with a bit of a technique adjustment I could probably cut down on the clean-up.

Seeing as it was probably just my brush that had this issue -  have heard of quite a few OPI brush inconsistencies - I would definitely recommend GSM - probably the best of the Serena Glam Slam colours thus far.

xxx NPA

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Misa Hip to my Jive Collection Swatches & Review

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I got three of the six polishes from this collection in my last order; Bop Til You Drop, Catch A Flick & Pop The Clutch.
I chose those 3 because they looked the most interesting to me/ I wanted to see if CAF was a dupe for OPI Mermaid Tears

Turns out... it is, well kinda. Suffice it to say I do not recommend buying 1 if you already have the other:

Misa Catch A Flick & on middle finger OPI Mermaid Tears
A pastel-like sea-foam green creme; this was 2 coats of CAF on the index, ring & pinky & 2 coats of MT on my middle finger. As you can see Misa's formula is a shade lighter & OPI's might have a touch more blue/grey in it. Certainly not worth having both. I couldn't decide which formula I liked more. But because I have narrow nail beds I prefer the Misa brush. CAF wasn't as pigmented as most Misa's I own but in person the hint of VNL you can see in the photo wasn't obvious. If I knew they were this close I wouldn't have bothered getting it, but if you missed out on MT this one is cheaper!

Misa Pop The Clutch 2 coats

I really like Pop The Clutch. It is pretty much the best pink neutral shimmer I have. Okay I only have like 2 or 3 but I think this is quite flattering on me. Not too stark & the silvery shimmer manages to somehow give this a  yellow tint so it becomes a warm pink. It has a grey quality to it that I like too, it prevents me from feeling like an elderly lady who will only paints her nail 1 colour!

Misa Bop Til You Drop 3 coats - flash

indoor lighting, no flash

I love it! A super bright coral with shimmer that looks orangey-gold, Bop Til You Drop is certainly  a must have pedicure colour!. Excuse the dents in my first two nails, I was lying in bed with tacky nails so of course I munted them a bit!!!! As you can see from the two photos this polish can look quite radically different in different lighting situations - either a very pink coral or that orange coral. It doesn't look as orange as the non-flash photo shows it though, just my camera freaking out as it likes to do when a coral or orange says Howdy! Such a pain in the bumhol-eo. I feel like watching Beavis & Butthead Do America now!!!! Getting back to the subject though - when I first got  BTYD I swatched it on my big toe & in sunlight I was like 'Holy Smoke it's pretty much neon - it can look that bright. Not really a fall colour more of a summer but heck I'll wear it year round!!!!

I have a sneaking suspicion that BTYD is very very similar to OPI I Eat Mainely Lobster. Time will tell as I can't find any comparisons on the interwebs & my Touring America polishes probably won't turn up for another week or 2 :( I wish fast shipping to NZ was cheaper. I can never justify the expense considering I'm never hurting for polish - I have too many draw fulls to need a new one pronto!

I hope these swatches help you - I could only find 1 other blogger who had put this collection up so far. I wonder if that means everyone else has boycotted it? To be fair it kind of looks like Misa checked out everyone's spring & summer collections & made some copies! I forgot to mention formula! They were less pigmented than my other Misa lacquers. Usually I only need 2 coats,while these ones kind of hurt for 3 - or two if you don't mind VNL, and anyone who has read my blog before will know I find ignoring VNL very difficult indeed!

xxx NPA

Saturday, 13 August 2011

China Glaze Emerald Sparkle

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Isn't my puppy gorgeous?! He'd been sleeping on Mum when I took this photo so he looks a bit dopey & super cute.

It's been a lazy Saturday for me - could not get to sleep last for the life of me so I had a mid-morning 'nap' and woke up in time for lunch. Of course sleeping half the day means that I feel fatigued and have a headache so I've achieved nothing yet! Just been entertaining the dogs. Charlie has started to get a bit jealous of the puppy so he's ultra needy! Lots of cuddles, geez louise he's a sissy! But I love him.

 Due to my laziness I'm just going to show you a swatch of China Glaze Emerald Sparkle. Gorgeous emerald (really a darker bluer green than true emerald) jelly base with lots of green glitter - just like Ruby Slippers. I'm in love.  Can't wait to do xmas manis with the two!

3 coats Emerald Sparkle - flash

indoors without flash

xxx NPA

Friday, 12 August 2011

Check this out if you're a fan of the ALL BLACKS

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Steph from Nail Juice has some very exciting OPI news relating to the RWC, click here to check it out. Only 28 days to go! Go Black!

xxx NPA

Thursday, 11 August 2011

Essie Braziliant Swatches Revisited

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Today the sun came out to play & went away & came again & went away & repeated this same pattern every half hour so I was madly dashing out to snap photos of these 3 polishes/ watching the new pup & entertaining a few preschoolers & trying to give Charlie enough attention so he doesn't get jealous of no-name.

This is the first day that I have got in to bed physically tired in a long, long time! And no-name is crying loudly about being in his crate tonight :( I can see why new mothers have a hard time Ferberising their babies! You feel so guilty!!!!  Watching the little guy & 2 little girls at the same time certainly made me think about delaying the birth of my own future babies (2 max, maybe even 1 if I can remember the pain of childbirth after baby #1).

Indoor sunlight


Indoor shade

Braziliant is truly brilliant. A super bright medium orange that leans coral, probably because it has a gorgeous coral/pink shimmer running through it. The pink shimmer is really obvious in the indoor photos. Such a summer stunner. I used 3 thin coats here but 2 was opaque. Also had on a layer of SV (because I was picking up dogs left right and centre and couldn't afford normal dry time).


outdoors - shade

Essie Super Bossa Nova is a gorgeous fuchsia (reminds me of OPI Flashbulb Fuchsia) with a slight purple-ish/blue shimmer and small flakies - I think. I'm not sure if it's glass fleck but in a creme base rather than jelly or if they are called glitter flakes. Anyways, so bright and attention grabbing - good in 2 coats. I put SV on top of this one too because I knocked the middle finger a bit while attending to the dogs and wanted to even it out rather than paint another layer of colour!


outdoors in shade

Essie Smooth Sailing is the perfect cornflower blue creme packed with silvery/white flakes of shimmer. Like Super Bossa Nova but the flakes of glitter/glass fleck are bigger and more abundant. This matches a dress of mine perfectly. The finish makes me think of Picture Polish Denim - a polish I aspire to purchase! Two coats again - I don't think I used SV - but I might have, it looks super shiny so I probably did :p

These summer shimmers had fabulous formulas - richly pigmented, on the thicker side & very workable with good brushes that fan out well on my nail. Highly recommend these 3 shades!

Can't wait for another day of puppy love!

xxx NPA

P.S. Super Bossa Nova counts as Pink Wednesday for this week since I forgot yesterday/didn't have enough time.


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