Lately it seems Sally Beauty puts out a new Finger Paints display every month; the one for July was Enchanted Mermaid, which promised "mermaid tail texture". I didn't know what that meant, but the colors looked nice, so I grabbed all four: Sea Temptress (pearl), Underwater Enchantress (dusty olive green), Tails of Love (teal), and Sailor's Lure (blue).
By the time I got around to trying these, I'd seen some other people's swatches, and the colors didn't seem to look nearly as good on the nail as in the bottle. Thus instead of committing to full hand swatches of each, I Skittled them, and boy was I glad I did, as they looked yucky and lumpy to me. I used three coats of Sea Temptress (index finger, top in photo below) and two of the others (same order as bottles above).
After some initial skepticism—I wasn't ready when Jason Wu and CND did the Anna Effect back in 2011, for sure, and was in the "looks interesting but not sure it's for me" camp when the first OPI Liquid Sand colors showed up a couple years later in the Mariah Carey collection—I got on the textured nail polish train. I like texture now; I've got a Zoya PixieDust on my digits as I type, actually. That said, this texture looks wrong to me, because it's quite clearly glitter in there, and in my view, glitter should show, not be submerged in shimmer. At least when Sally Hansen did it with in the Xtreme Wear Fall 2010 release, the glitter was somewhat visible; here, it's just buried.
I added topcoat, which smoothed these out to the touch but not so much to the eye. I was still "nope" on these.
Since topcoat didn't work to make me like these, I decided to try layering. That didn't help. Top to bottom: Sea Temptress (3 coats alone, for comparison purposes), Sailor's Lure plus Sea Temptress, black creme plus Sea Temptress, black creme plus Sailor's Lure plus Underwater Enchantress. Just no.
I was feeling stubborn the day I swatched these, so pondered how I could use them in a way they wouldn't bother me. I decided the Pretty Woman Seashells nail art kit languishing in my stash was just the thing; mermaids and shells go together, after all.
I alternated Underwater Enchantress and Tails of Love on my nails, then patted on the crushed shell pieces from one of the pots in the kit while the polish was still wet. I didn't do a great job covering all my nails, but I could overlook that because I really liked how the colors coordinated.
Pretty as the shells were, they took texture to a whole 'nother level, the catching on my hair and clothes level, which does not work for me. To see if I could smooth things over and make this look even more mermaid-y, I topped the shells with a coat of Pure Ice Sparkling Seas (which you may remember from last week's Pure Ice and SinfulShine post) and then clear topcoat. Now this I liked; this I'd wear. The blue of Sparkling Seas did overpower most of the shell colors, and one layer of topcoat wasn't quite enough to level out all the spaces between the shells, but I've got ways to deal with that (i.e. Gelous). At this point, the Finger Paints were not really showing through at all, which was okay by me.
So yeah, I like the Enchante Mermaid colors best when they are covered up by a lot of other stuff so I don't have to see their texture. I'm not saying no one should wear these; I'm saying I don't think I will be, at least not on their own.