Monday, January 31, 2011

Jesse's Girl Confetti

Since I'm not made of stone, I did pick up a few things from the displays I shared in my last entry. One of those things was Jesse's Girl Confetti, a blue and purple flecked shimmer, the sort of combination that activates the "yes, please" center in my brain. These new Jesse's Girl bottles tout the contents as "high intensity nail color", so I wasn't entirely prepared for needing to use four coats; that's not very intense in my book.

In the bottle, this has a very nice blue to purple shift which I wanted to see more of on my nails, so I turned them this way and that for the camera but never quite got the look I was hoping for.

I then turned my old friend layering to help me out, putting one coat of Confetti over a black creme (in this case Rimmel's Black Satin). Ah, that's more like it; I could see the purple and the blue and even, in some lights, a few pops of green. It was quite a dramatic difference from Confetti alone.

Since I'm always on the lookout for a cheaper dupe of RBL Scrangie, I couldn't resist doing a quick comparison. In the bottles, at some angles I could almost convince myself they might be close, but they're not. Scrangie is more pigmented (I used two coats to Confetti's four) with a finer shimmer and more complex coloring. That's not to say I don't like Confetti—I do and am looking forward to trying it out over other base colors besides black.

Confetti (left), Scrangie (right).

Top to bottom: Confetti, Scrangie, Confetti, Scrangie.

The only place I've seen Jesse's Girl is at Rite Aid stores; I don't know of an online source but of course there's always swapping. I get so many swap packages at work that I'm pretty sure my coworkers are convinced I'm running a side business out of the office, but I'll let them keep wondering.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Post-Holiday Displays

There seems to be a bit of a lull in new nail polish displays being put out in the stores I frequent, but there have been a few different ones pop up in recent weeks.

Rite Aid has a new to them (and me) brand, oke doke (the fact that the name has both horizontal lines over the e's and periods after each word annoys me so I'm protesting by not putting them in).

Left to right: Steal This Teal, Hot Tomato, Goldilocks, Pink This, Purple Nurple, Camo Loco.

The oke doke are $1.99; I didn't note how big the bottles are, not especially tiny at any rate.

Also at Rite Aid, there's the relaunch of Jesse's Girl, in new bottles that I like much better than the old rectangular ones with the boxy caps.

I believe sixteen colors were released in these new bottles, though this first display I saw only had fifteen of them. Here's the list: Riff-Raff (brown shimmer), Glee (turquoise flecked shimmer that looks like Zoya Charla & its dupes), Confetti (purple/blue flecked shimmer), Fire Fly (winter white flecked shimmer), Spring Break (warm lilac creme), Crush (bright orange creme), JulieG (bright coral creme), Wham Bam (warm red creme), Blue Moon (blue/purple shimmer), Wild Thing (bright plum creme), Baby Cakes (bright pink creme), Beach Baby (neon pink creme), Midori (bright green frost), Fools Gold (warm gold shimmer), Breathless (fuchsia shimmer), Flirt (dusty rose shimmer—this is one missing from the display). These are priced at $2.99 and the bottles hold .35 ounces (10 ml).

Borghese is doing a relaunch as well; I first saw the display at Rite Aid but have since seen it at Ulta, too. There are new core colors and a new quick dry line, Rapido, which has white caps. Seems like this would have been a good time to redesign the bottles to update the look, but they didn't ask me. There's a line on the display that says "If you like Chanel, Lancôme, or Estée Lauder nail lacquer, try Borghese nail lacquer." I guess that might be a response to the complaints some have made that their price point (usually $8.00) is too high for a drugstore polish.

There are nine Rapido colors in the display (though I saw the new permanent display at Ulta and there were slots for more Rapido colors than this, so I'll be stalking that to see when they fill it). This batch of Rapido includes: Maraschino (cherry pink creme), Marino (bright blue creme), Mochaccino (taupe shimmer), Rosso (red creme), Menta (mint green shimmer), Chroma (silver foil), Vigneto (purple shimmer), Anemone (red violet shimmer with blue flash), and Limoncello (medium olive green shimmer). The new core colors are: Riviera Sunset (coppery bronze shimmer), Arrivederci Mist (taupe creme), Buon Viaggio Mauve (mauve creme), Tempesta Black (black with silver shimmer), and Euro Green (deep olive green shimmer). I'm not sure why they decided to use some of the names from last year's Tutti Gelati collection for the Rapidos; these new Menta and Limoncello don't look anything like the old ones, for instance.

Wet 'n' Wild has a new quick dry line also; it's called Fast Dry (or perhaps fastdry, but that looks weird to me). I've seen it both in special displays and in reset core displays. The first time I saw it was in a small display on an endcap at Meijer; that one only had about half the new colors, though all of them were available down the aisle in the new core display. I've also seen these at Walgreens in a side of the endcap display; that did seem to have all the colors.

There are 18 colors: FuchsiaRama (bright plum creme), Saved by the Blue (blue shimmer), Sage in the City (green shimmer), Ebony Hates Chris (black creme), Party of Five Glitters (multi glitter in clear base), Silvivor (silver foil), Buffy The Violet Slayer (purple shimmer), Gray's Anatomy (grey shimmer), Blue Wants to Be a Millionaire (light blue scattered holo glitter), SaGreena the Teenage Witch (green shimmer), Hannah Pinktana (purple-y pink scattered holo glitter), (orange shimmer), How I Met Your Magenta (bright pink shimmer), The Wonder Yellows (yellow shimmer), Teal Or No Teal (teal shimmer), Everybody Loves Redmond (red creme), The Gold & The Beautiful (gold shimmer), Teal of Fortune (turquoise flecked shimmer, another Charla-esque laquer). Like Borghese, some of these names are being re-used; I know I got a Gray's Anatomy and a Buffy the Violet Slayer from last year's Craze tv collection. Grrr. I don't need that kind of confusion.

Also spotted at Walgreens, a sticker I hadn't seen before on one of the displays:

I doubt it will work, as the clueless people who use polish in the store and mess up displays are probably too clueless (or self-absorbed) to read directions, but I give Walgreens credit for trying.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Paradoxal and Friends

I keep talking about de-duping my stash, yet I continue to acquire polishes that I know are likely dupes or near dupes to things I already have. Case in point, I bought Chanel Paradoxal fairly soon after it was released, yet that did not stop me from asking Lucy to get me Barry M Dusky Mauve when we did our swap, nor did it stop me from buying Revlon Perplex pretty much the minute I first saw it. I finally had a chance to swatch the copycats alongside the real thing recently. I know plenty of people have already done this, but I like to see for myself and figure more pictures means more information or at least confirmation available out in the world wide web.

First up, the Barry M. In the bottle, it looks very much like the Chanel.

On the nail (two coats for each), they continue to look very much alike. Very, very much alike, in a variety of lighting conditions. Bravo, Barry M!

Lightbox, top to bottom: Paradoxal, Dusky Mauve, Paradoxal, Dusky Mauve.

Room light, top to bottom: Paradoxal, Dusky Mauve.

Flash, top to bottom: Paradoxal, Dusky Mauve, Paradoxal, Dusky Mauve.

Next up, the Revlon. In the bottle, it looks pretty close, but not quite as close as the Barry M did.

On the nail (again two coats for each), it's same story as the bottles: close, but not quite. Bright light brings them closest to each other in appearance.

Lightbox, top to bottom: Paradoxal, Perplex, Paradoxal, Perplex.

Room light, top to bottom: Perplex, Paradoxal.

Flash, top to bottom: Paradoxal, Perplex.

The Revlon definitely leans more purple than the Chanel, and that's a fine thing as far as I'm concerned.

And finally, not at all a dupe but a polish I picked up because the brown and purple shimmer combination it had going on reminded me a bit of Paradoxal. CQ is a brand made by Scherer, the company that also makes Petites, Petites Color Fever, and Chameleon polishes. This particular shade is called Shimmering Bark; it's much warmer than Paradoxal but seems distantly related somehow.

Since I already had Paradoxal on two fingers, I went ahead and did a comparison even though I knew from the bottles that these were not close.

I don't need to tell you which is which, do I?

One big difference between Shimmering Bark and Paradoxal is Shimmering Bark is much more sheer; I used four coats of it versus two for Paradoxal. Hello, layering polish.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Stylish and Beautiful Awards

I'm flattered to have been tagged with the Stylish Blogger Award by several lovely ladies: Mirannie, Varnish Vixen, danussa, necessary★nails, Acetone Nail Blog, LadyLuck, and Nail Narcissism. Thanks so much!

Award Badge

I was also tagged by nailspotting with the Beautiful Blogger award.

Award Badge

Rules for this award:
- Copy the award image into a post
- Link to the person who gave you the award
- Give the award to 7 other bloggers and link to their blogs
- Write 7 things about yourself

Since I passed along the Stylish award when it was going around last summer, I'm just going to do just the Beautiful one today. Some versions of the rules ask for 7 "interesting" things, but that's too much pressure (and interesting, like beautiful, is in the eye of the beholder anyway).

1. I've got a food stain on my sweater that I'm trying to pretend I've rinsed out enough to wear the sweater the rest of the day (it's cold in my office), so I'm not feeling particularly stylish or beautiful at the moment.

2. I support the use of the serial comma.

3. I pierced my own ears with a sewing needle when I was about 11 years old. My mother was not pleased when she noticed, which of course she did even though I was trying to keep my hair over my ears when she was around so she wouldn't. Those holes are still in use today, decades later.

4. If I had it to do over again, I'd elope. My husband is great, and I'm glad we got married, but most of the wedding stuff was just a pain in the butt.

5. I have loved Eeyore, the glum donkey from Winnie the Pooh, since I was a little girl. I have pretty much stopped collecting Eeyore stuff since I have so much (mostly stuffed animals, watches, earrings, and clothes) but every once in a while I'll see something I just have to have.

6. I've visited 49 of the 50 states. At one point, I was planning on a 25th wedding anniversary trip to Hawaii to complete the set, but a relative decided to do that for her 25th anniversary the same year and invited family to join her (at our own expense) so now we're thinking about going to France instead because I don't find family reunions romantic in the least.

7. I played the oboe when I was younger. I was not very good at it but since so few people played the instrument I got to be first chair a lot of the time in school.

I'm tagging these sites with the Beautiful Blogger award:

Sparkle Sparkle Gemx posts a great mix of nail polihes, other beauty products, and snippets about her life as a student in the UK.

nails by bellan She shows a wide variety of polish brands, including some I can only cross my fingers and hope to swap for since she's from Sweden.

Suburban Beauty Her pictures make me think "yeah, I need that polish" so often.

Legally Polished She does wonderful nail art in a variety of styles from subtle to bold; if I ever get more time to play I'll be copying a bunch of her looks.

Frippery Digits Another one I read to drool over her nail art.

Love, Varnish, Chocolate, and more This Dutch blogger shares plenty of photos and does some great accent nail looks.

Ditch the Mittens Great photos of polish, nail art, and sometimes her handsome kitty.

Wheel X: Yellow Cremes (Mostly)

Nail wheel

(all 3 coats unless otherwise noted)

1. Ulta 3 Spring Blossom
2. Joe Fresh Butter
3. Rescue Beauty Lounge Square Pants
4. OPI Banana Bandanna [this one has a slight shimmer]
5. Essence Naughty But Nice
6. China Glaze Lemon Fizz
7. Orly Lemonade
8. Maybelline Express Finish Banana Bamba [another subtle shimmer here]
9. Sally Hansen Insta Dri Expresso Yellow (2 coats)
10. Ulta El Sol
11. OPI Need Sunglasses
12. Barry M Yellow
13. Wet 'n' Wild Lemon Drops
14. Revlon Street Wear Loud
15. Wet 'n' Wild Cancun
16. Essence Sundancer
17. OPI The "It" Color
18. L.A. Colors Shock (4 coats) [somehow fooled me into thinking it was darker than it is]
19. Revlon Street Wear Burnt
20. Barielle Aura Angora [which oddly seems darker now than when I swatched it; still not flattering to me, though]

As typical for Nail Wheel Wednesday, I see plenty of opportunity for destashing here. 1 and 2 are similar enough to not need both; it's the same story with 5 through 7. Keeping two or three of the 9 through 18 range would probably still leave me with a lifetime supply of those shades as seldom as I wear yellow. Number 20 has to go because it looks bad on me, but 19 can stay because a) I'm sentimental about Street Wear and b) the color is slightly more flattering than 20 so I might actually wear it as a full mani sometime.

Bottles 1 through 5:

6 through 10:

11 through 15:

16 through 20:

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Recent NOTD: OPI Pink of Hearts

Nails of the day posts have been scarce this month because I've been mostly just been wearing treatment products to try and help my nails recover from all the abuse I put them through on vacation—wearing wet gloves, helping out with condo improvement projects, that sort of thing. Right now I'm sporting two coats of Orly Nailtrition, but before that I went with a subtle pink so as not to attract attention to the peelie spots. This particular pink is OPI Pink of Hearts 2010, released for Breast Cancer Awareness Month this past October.

For this mani, I used one coat each of Orly Nailtrition, American Classics Gelous (which I was trying out for the first time), Pink of Hearts, and Sally Hansen Insta Dri top coat. I was pleased that the color wasn't streaky with a single coat like pale shades can sometimes be. The Gelous did a pretty good job of smoothing out my peelies, though I'm not sure it's as effective as Instant Artificials at that task as it didn't seem quite as thick.

There was a time when I mostly wore pale and sheer colors like this; now I find them nice for a change of pace but am ready to get back to my glitters and more flashy shades. I'm trying to be patient and give the treatment a chance to work, but I'm not sure I'm going to make it the full two weeks called for on the bottle of Nailtrition.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Rub It!

I was on another ski trip last week; the snow wasn't as nice as the trip before but Mr. Karen and I still had plenty of fun. He and friend had driven our truck out to Idaho for the December trip; this trip he and I drove it back, which means I spent most of the last three days on the interstate highways. (It's going to take me a bit to catch up with answering comments as a result, since I didn't even boot up my laptop the whole time we were on the road.) In a truck stop in Wisconsin, I found some trucker's hand balm that I just couldn't resist. The little cartoon driver looks entirely too excited about the stuff.

The ingredients are listed as beeswax, olive oil, almond oil, comfrey, calendula, essentials oils, and tocopherol (vitamin E). That sounded pretty good. I opened the tin to find a waxy cake in a plastic liner. It looked similar to Burt's Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream, which wasn't surprising since the ingredients are similar.

Unlike the Burt's, this stuff pops right out of the tin in one piece so you can rub it right on your hands (or elbows or knees or whatever body part); it even tells you what to do right on the cake of wax.

I've only used this a few times so I've no idea how well it works, but can say it smells nice, rather like spiced cider but not too strong. It's not as melty as a Lush massage bar, so it drags a bit on my skin when I try to use it as a substitute for hand lotion. It applies nicely as a cuticle cream, though. The website listed on the tin appears to have been taken over by one of those scammy link aggregators, so I hope I don't end up liking this too much, since I can't just drive to Wisconsin whenever I run out of it.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Butter London: Henley Regatta

Given my fondness for glitter, Henley Regatta became a must have for me as soon as I saw it there in the airport. It's packed with fine blue and green glitter, but I've been fooled by sparkly polishes that look dense in the bottle but are very scattered on the nail, so I layered this one over Victoriana from yesterday's entry. I started with one coat of Henley Regatta over Victoriana on my index finger and added another for each finger until I got to my pinky, which has four coats of glitter (!). I did add a top coat as well, since it looked a tiny bit bumpy without.

I liked this at all the different numbers of coats. It does build nicely, but just one coat as a topper adds lots of sparkle. It looks great in low light, too:

I glad I indulged in these, and equally glad they're not that easy to get where I live as I'd be tempted to go get more.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Butter London: Victoriana

Victoriana is a dusty blue shimmer, a blue which leans decidedly toward the green side of its nature. The silver shimmer in this one is much more prominent than that in Marrow, which I posted yesterday. Like Marrow, Victoriana took only two coats.

The closest thing I can think of that I own to this is Rescue Beauty Lounge's 360, but that's nowhere near as shimmery as Victoriana. I'm happy to have both.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Butter London: Marrow

Marrow is a dusty purple shimmer. The shimmer is on the subtle end of the spectrum but does show up in most lighting conditions.

I used two coats to get bottle color. The brush on these is fine; I found the handle a bit stumpy but soon got used to it. Like some of the other premium brands, the part of the cap that shows is really a cover and pulls off to reveal the part you actually hold when you use the polish. Unlike some other brands, the Butter London caps have a label that tells you that.

Being a purple person, there was no way I was leaving Marrow behind, and it did not disappoint on the nail.

Not Nail Wheel Wednesday

I obviously don't have enough Butter London polishes to do a nail wheel for BL week, but that's not the main reason there's no wheel today. The main reason is that I used the time I'd normally have painted one to work on this baby quilt instead, so it would be ready in time for the shower at which the woman who paid me to make it will give it to her niece who's expecting a baby girl in a few months.

If you're into quilting, you can read more about this one over on my online journal in this entry.

Marrow will be along later today to continue Butter London Week.