Monday, March 28, 2011

Essie Smokin' Hot Comparison

The other day I came across an Amazon seller who had Essie Smokin' Hot from this past winter's collection listed for $49.99, which I thought was insane. I'm hoping it was a data entry error, but the same seller has Merino Cool listed for $39.80 so maybe not. I took that as a sign that I needed to get my much procrastinated about Smokin' Hot comparison done. First, Smokin' Hot on its own.





Smokin' Hot is a nice polish, no doubt about that. It's deep grey creme with hints of purple and brown in it, covers in two coats, and is shiny even without top coat. Is it "I must have this or I will die" unique? No, most certainly not. I found three candidates for substitution in my stash: Sally Hansen Grey Area, Nina Ultra Pro Never Glum Plum, and Models Own Purple Grey.



All of these other polishes also covered in two coats.



Top to bottom: Smokin' Hot, Grey Area, Never Glum Plum, Purple Grey.


Grey Area is the closest to a dupe of Smokin' Hot in this group. It, like the Essie, is a limited edition that first appeared near the end of last year, but I have seem it in some stores recently, ones that maybe didn't put out a bunch of new displays during the Christmas season thanks to the glut of fragrance sets they seem to think people need for gifts. I also spotted it on eBay for a buy it now price of $4.99, still over retail but not what I'd consider a ridiculous markup if you really like the color. Never Glum Plum is close, too, just a touch lighter than Grey Area. That's core at Sally Beauty as far as I know. Purple Grey is a hint lighter and more purple, but still a fine stand in if you missed Smokin' Hot and wanted it. This overexposed flash picture shows the differences better, but you need to ask yourself how often you are subject to flash photography. I know I'm rarely in the glare of cameras like that.



I can't stop people from paying super inflated prices for Essie if they choose to, but it makes me happy to be able to share alternatives.

13 comments:

  1. I'm sure people will be happy for the alternatives you posted. $50 for nail polish is INSANE!! I can buy Merino Cool at CVS for $8.00...but I guess the seller is targeting people who have zero access to Essie.

    I have Gray Area and love it...it's certainly a great dupe for Smoking Hot. Thanks for the comparison and saving people moola! :D

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  2. Thanks! You saved me some money ebcause I have Grey Area and it looks close enough for me :) My wallet says you are it's hero :)

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  3. Dang! I have both Grey Area and Smokin' Hot! Oh well, I guess I have a backup!

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  4. so glad you did this post! I have smokin' hot and love it but Grey Area has been on my want list for a while but now I can cross it off.
    :)

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  5. 49.99 for a bottle of nail polish? That's just... so wrong!
    Thank you for this post and all the alternatives :)

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  6. I love comparison posts like these, so thanks for taking the time! I'd much rather find an easily available dupe than make my self crazy over a lemming that is HTF. Nail polish scalpers on Ebay have gone crazy in the past 18 months or so-what is going on there?!?

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  7. I so agree. I love these excellent posts. Thanks much for taking the time to keep us informed. :D

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  8. I love these comparison posts! Thx so much for them...keeps my wallet happy!

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  9. Smokin hot is indeed smokin hot!! Love it

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  10. I bought Smokin Hot on ebay and payed something like 3 euro for it.
    I love it, it is a nice shades. But I wouldn't have paid more than 5 € for it. :)

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  11. $50?! Is this a HTF one?! Inflated prices like that makes me sad....then mad!

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  12. SOoo expensive the sellers really sometimes try to earn too much.It is a lovely colour but we always can get a close dupe. Thank you for the dupes:)

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  13. At first I thought, it just came out, it can't be that hard to find! But then I started to look around and it looks like many etailers is out of stock of Smokin' Hot. Might be a HTF but no way I'd pay $50 :)

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