I picked up a couple colors to try from the LA Colors Color Craze display, even though the main benefit touted on the display—high shine—is not really a concern since for a full mani, I'd use topcoat anyway and get my shine from that. But you know I'm a sucker for pretty colors, and these were pretty and $2.49 so it's quite remarkable I only got two: Magical and Masquerade.
Magical is a lilac with pink and gold shimmer.
Magical is on the sheer side; I used three coats for my swatch and could still see some visibile nail line at most angles. I think four might have made it opaque, as I did an extra swipe on the outside of my pinky nail and that seemed to cover the nail line.
Sheer polish means layering fun, so I tried Magical over some base colors. Top to bottom: three coats of Magical alone for comparison purposes, one coat of Magical over Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Cafe au Lait (skintone color for me), one coat of Magical over L'Oreal High Spirits (lilac creme), one coat of Magical over unknown white creme.
I'd wear any of those combinations. Over the skintone creme, it's subtle; over the lilac, it looks like the bottle color without having to do so many coats, and over the white, it's surprisingly and delightfully blue-toned (though I'd need to work harder on getting an even coat of Magical since the bright white base shows up where I got sloppy).
Masquerade is a dark warm brown shimmer that reminds me of black cherry soda.
Masquerade was not sheer; I used only one coat for my swatch. It dried a bit on the satin side, which I found odd given all the references to "shine" on the display. The shimer pretty much disappeard on the nail, which was disappointing.
I added some topcoat and put my nails in direct light, which did coax a bit more of the shimmer to show, but still wasn't what I was hoping for. I wish the base were less dark and the shimmer a touch more prominent.
But wait, I had some prominent shimmer in layering form quite handy, so I popped a coat of Magical on top of Masquerade. Now we're talking.
I loved this combination. When I added topcoat and popped my nails into direct light, I really really loved it.
It's very early in the year, but I'm going to go ahead and say that Magical is in the running for my 2016 Top 20. Masquerade, not so much.