In the same rounds of shopping that netted me the OPI finds I shared a couple weeks ago, I came across some Ciate polishes at discount prices. The biggest find was the Mini Mani Month advent calendar from I think 2013. This was the last one in the store; it had been opened and some of the little doors ripped off inside, but all the polishes seemed to be there, so I brought it home.
The contents were shown on back of box (of course this didn't keep folks from opening—maybe it was that mystery polish, but that wasn't one of the doors that was ripped off, so I don't know):
I picked a trio of the minis to play with: Party Shoes, Encore, and Snow Globe.
Encore is an orange red creme; I put two coats on as a base. The formula was very smooth. On my middle finger, I added two coats of Party Shoes, which has gold and iridescent glitter in a clear base. On my ring finger, I layered one coat of Party Shoes then one of Snow Globe, which is a shredded iridescent glitter. My pinky got two coats of Snow Globe on top of Encore. All fingers got clear topcoat.
One of the minis was a pastel peach shimmer that reminded me very strongly of the sort of polish I lived in during my conservative phase in the mid-80s, when I was working as an accountant just out of college and trying very hard to be a proper, respectable grownup. (I got over pretty much all of that eventually.) For old times' sake, I put on three coats of this one, called Members Only. Looking at it closely, it's got some tiny coppery flecks that might have been just too flashy for my buttoned up former self, but current me looks at it and finds it incredibly subdued.
The mystery full size polish in the set was Serendipity, which has a clear base filled with small wood rose glitter. I wasn't sure how opaque it would be, so I put it on top of Members Only, doing two coats of Serendipity plus clear topcoat.
I won't pay full price for Ciate because I'm still miffed about how they handled the caviar manicure issue (The PolishAholic did a great post on it back in the day), but at TJ Maxx/Marshalls prices, I will. I do like the bottles, how they nestle together so nicely, and a lot of the formulas are quite good (Snow Globe was harder to work with, but shredded glitters tend to be that way).