Friday, September 14, 2012

Time to Go Shopping

I think I might need to put myself on a schedule for display posts because somehow I never seem to manage to do one until my photo folder is filled to overflowing (well, it would be overflowing if it were a real folder rather than a computer file, but you know what I mean). I get paid twice a month; maybe a shopping post twice a month makes sense, too. For today, though, settle in for a long journey with me through stores in four states.

Let's start in Michigan at a Walgreens. This particular store had the Black Radiance Girls Rock collection I shared in my last display post, but this one was setup correctly instead of having the cardboard shoved underneath the polishes.

Moving on to Rite Aid (still in Michigan, as we will be for the rest of this entry with a handful of exceptions, which I will note when we get to them), there were two new displays from City Color. The first is called Masquerade. That has some crazy long false eyelashes and four polish colors in square bottles (a shape they've used before, which with this brand isn't a given). I didn't see any shades names on these.

There were no shade names on the bottles in the other City Color display, either. This one's called Flutter, and has eight colors in rose shaped bottles.

On the shelf below the City Color roses was L'Oreal New York Nudes, six skintone shades ranging from pale to dark. Left to right: Park Avenue Luncheon, Broadway Boogie, Til the Sun Comes Up, Hudson Sunset, Downtown Chic, and Brownie Points. The display says these are limited edition, which seems odd for colors that might otherwise become staples in one's nail polish wardrobe. We all need good underwear, after all.

Next to the nudes was the four-color version of the Essie Stylenomics collection for fall 2012. Left to right: Head Mistress, Stylenomics, Skirting the Issue, and Miss Fancy Pants.

At this point, I went back to Illinois to visit my mom. In a Jewel-Osco where I'd gone to pick up a few things before I went back to the hospital, I saw the Maybelline Fall 2012 Scene on the Runway display for the first time. There are six polish colors here: Boho Gold (olive/green duochrome), Auburn Ablaze (deep orangey red shimmer), Downtown Brown (warm brown with green shimmer), Metal Icon (brown/silver metallic), Avante Green (green/lime duochrome), Pink Cosmo (gold/pink duochrome).

Later that weekend, I was in a Meijer doing grocery shopping for my mom's return home. I tried to take a photo of the six-shade version of the Essie Yogaga display when I discovered my camera wasn't working and had to resort to using my phone, which made the colors warmer than they should be. Left to right: Gym Dandy, Marathin, Boxer Shorts, Pilates Hottie, Yogaga, and Spinning Again.

Back at Mom's house, I discovered my camera didn't just need a battery charge, it was broken. It'd been having some issues, bad enough that I'd done some poking around looking for a replacement, so I went out and bought a new camera when I picked up Mom's prescriptions later that day. I used that new camera to shoot the Wet 'n' Wild Fergie display that I spotted at a Meijer back in Michigan on my drive home (I figure if I'm going to stop for a bathroom break, I might as well do it in a place that also sells nail polish). This is the five-row version that eluded me for so long when I was searching Walgreens after the line debuted. The difference is Meijer has put $2.99 price stickers over all the $3.49 ones that come preprinted on the display.

At Ulta, OPI Germany had arrived. I won't rehash the color list here since there are swatches all over, including in my OPI Germany post.

Also at Ulta, the six-color version of Essie Stylenomics. Left to right: Stylenomics, Miss Fancy Pants, Don't Sweater It, Head Mistress, Recessionista, and Skirting the Issue.

Continuing our wander around Ulta, here's the Piggy Polish Fall Softly display. These three colors don't say autumn to me. Left to right: When Leaves Leave, Goodbye Blue Sky, and Autumn Acoustics.

I believe all three of these are re-named re-promotes. Why do I say this? Because I could see the old color name stickers under the new ones. Based on that, I'd say if you've got Blue Me Away, you don't need Autumn Acoustics. Same with Goodbye Blue Sky, which used to be known as Tic Tac TOES. I couldn't quite make out what was under When Leaves Leave; it might be Coral Reef, something that starts with Co anyway.

Time to go back to Walgreens and see if there's anything new. And lo, there is—Sinful Hot Flash. As usual with Sinful, I don't know if these are new colors or repromotes or what, but I am sure there are eight of them: Super Nova, Heavy Metal, Gone Platinum, Hot Hot Heat, Precious Metal, Zincing of You, Hot Wired, and Moss Have.

Walgreens also had a big Maybelline display that included the six fall limited edition polishes.

On my pre-Labor Day trip out west, I of course did some polish shopping. When I met up with the lady behind Lilacquer Polishes, one of the things we did was go to a nail supply store. There was a lot to look at there, but I didn't want to be obnoxious about taking too many photos, so just snapped one of the China Glaze Magnetix II display, which I'd never seen before (I've since seen it at Sally Beauty back here at home). I left a lot of the background here so you can get a taste for how very much stuff there was in that store. Six colors here: Con-fused (green), Sparks Will Fly (blue), Get Charged (purple), Positively in Love (pink), Gold Fusion (gold), Bond-tastic (orange). There's also a new magnet in this display, with three new for China Glaze designs: concentric circles, a nine-patch grid (to this quilter's eye), and vertical lines.

While in Washington and Idaho, I also got the chance to visit a couple different Fred Meyer stores (which are only in the northwest U.S. and are not to be confused with Meijer stores, which are only in the midwest U.S., though it would be easy to mix them up since the names are similar and they both sell the same sorts of things). Fred Meyer seems to have gotten rid of LA Girl line since my last visit, but I got over that quick when I saw what they'd added: Essence. The section was twice as wide as the one at Ulta and had not just the Colour & Go line (in the new bottle style) but crackle and magnetics and nail art toppers and double ended duos and stickers and stamping plats and a space for a limited edition display (in this instance, Marble Mania). I was incredibly tempted to buy one of each polish, but managed talk myself down.

Of course Fred Meyer had other displays, too. There was a L'Oreal New York Nudes that included not just the polish but lip stuff, too.

They had one of the seasonal Sally Hansen groupings of Hard as Nails core colors. This was called Seaside Shades and contained Rock Star, Frozen Solid, Made in Jade, Stonewall, Sticks and Stones, and Die Hard Fan.

I was intrigued by the Absolute Magnetic ring magnet display. This had four magnet designs but no polish, nor did the display make it clear that you'd need magnetic polish for the designs to show up; it just says "hold magnet over wet polish". If they'd had a design I didn't have from someone else already, I would have bought one, but they didn't so I didn't.

At Northwest Beauty Supply, which was in the same building as Fred Meyer, I saw my first Nubar display in person.

After I got back from Idaho, I had only not many days at home before I headed to Illinois to check up on my Mom, and I didn't spot any new displays in that short time. I don't remember if I even went into any drugstores that week. Maybe not. It seems implausible, but I think it might be true. Mom is doing so well that I heeded her wishes and started my drive home earlier in the day than I'd planned (she was worried about me getting home too late). I took advantage of that extra time to swing into Chicago proper to check out the flagship concept Walgreens store that Alli McBally tipped me off about in a comment last month. I was so jazzed about it that I took a shot of the building:

This Walgreens is definitely not like any other one I've been to. It's two floors, for one thing. The first floor is a food market, with a lot of fresh stuff. I zoomed by that part to get on the escalator to where the beauty stuff was. At first, it seemed similar to any Walgreens, with the familiar drugstore brands. But then I got to the higher end brands. There was this display with Essie and OPI, just like Alli said there'd be.

Next to that, there was the first GOSH display I've seen in real life. I was puzzled by the polish bottles being in there upside down. Sure, you can see the colors better, but that invites polish to drip into the threads and stick the bottle shut. Ladies who live where GOSH is common, is this the done thing in a GOSH display?

There was more GOSH on the other side of the display, too:

At this point in my visit, a sales associate appeared from behind the display and told me "no pictures". She said it was corporate policy and was not swayed by my trying to chat her up about how excited I was to see my first GOSH display and all the other things this store had. From then on, she watched me like I was a corporate spy or shoplifter or both. I did manage to sneak one more photo, of the tini beauty section, another brand I'd never seen in a store before, mostly to see if I could get away with it—if I couldn't, I figured I'd at least have a good story about getting thrown out of a Walgreens.

It felt like I was pressing my luck, so I didn't try to document the other displays, which is sad because there was the biggest and prettiest Pop Beauty one I'd ever seen, and one of The Balm, which I'd never seen anywhere. There might have been a couple more, but I was feeling so unwelcome by that point that I put back the two GOSH I'd been carrying around and left the store without buying anything. That's sad, because I feel like I'm the perfect customer for that store—I buy tons of polish and they have tons of it I don't already own. I'm not sure if I never want to go back or want to try again to see if I get a friendlier sales associate. I wonder whether I should write Walgreens to see if I can get permission to take photos (obviously they sometimes allow it, because I found a whole gallery about the first floor on I know it's their right to not allow photos. I also know there are better ways the sales associate could have handled the situation that didn't leave me feeling so iffy about going back. Ah well, it's not like I can't get polish seventy hundred other places. In fact, I walked down the street from that Walgreens to Sephora, which was a lot more comfortable (had more customers, too). I'm not a huge fan of the nail bar, as the lighting from below makes it hard to see the polish, but the sales associates left me alone to play when I told them I wasn't in need of help.

Let's end today's journey here. I do have more displays to share, but since many of them are Halloween themed and I'm planning a Halloween giveaway, I'll save them for next week or the week after (depending on when I get organized for the contest). Thanks for reading this far and have a great weekend!


  1. This post makes me want to cry!!! We dont have a store like this where I am from :( But it gives me something to look forward to when we go on vacation in a few months! BTW thanks for the comment awhile back.

    PS I am from a tropical island called GUAM ;)

  2. Wow Im speachless! I never see half the stuff you post ad if I do the display is empty! Thanks!

  3. I felt the same about the "Fancy Walgreens." I went there not long after they opened to check out the nail stuff, and was followed around by a sales associate, although I said I just wanted to look. It made me feel so edgy that it didn't take long for me to leave. Pity, because like you, I could probably have dropped a bundle there!

  4. I had to laugh when I was reading about the Walgreens in Chicago - we were recently there for a convention and it was the nearest "doc in the box" :). I had no idea it was their new concept store - I was just unhappy because I was feeling too bad to participate in the wine tasting going on downstairs. The concept of a wine tasting at Walgreens amused me so. And I did buy two nail polishes...:)

  5. Wow, that Walgreebs looks amazing!! Pity about the jerkface employee, though. I had an annoying experience at Sephora yesterday - how many times in a 15 minute period must I tell the same person I don't need help?! I hate hovering SA's.

  6. I've never seen Gosh polishes upside down before!

  7. AIGYAAA!!! *pouts* I never could have walked away from the extended essence display without grabbing the ones I'm missing. :( Also, I really really really wish we had a Rite Aid.... *sigh*

  8. Wow that Walgreens is awesome! It's a shame that the sales associate was so rude. There definitely could have been a nicer way to say that to you. And I hate she said that because I would have loved to see more pictures of all the awesome polish!

  9. When I see your display posts I always imagine to travel to the US with an empty suitcase and then just shop like crazy and go home when the suitcase is stuffed :D

  10. Aww, now you made me drool on my lap top AGAIN LOL
    I love these posts (even if the make me soo green with envy...)

  11. omg the rose shapes bottles are gorgeous! We never get anything like that over here (Australia)!

  12. Ouch those posts are always dangerous, Karen! They make me want to buy each and every polish I see... And I have my eye on some of them, it's just, hey, I am in Spain :'( haha!

  13. o-m-g my heart is going bang-bang now *.*

  14. That Essence display is great, we only have small ones around here. Those Special Effect Toppers are my favourite of their products!

  15. In Canada they display GOSH polishes up-right. Great post!! did you haul any gosh np while you wer there?? lol sneaky sneaky!!!!

  16. Great pictures! That Walgreens seemed huge! Too bad you couldn't get any more pictures after the ones you got.
    I'm not a fan of the nail display at Sephora either lol

  17. I've seen the GOSH polishes stored upside down too and thought the same thing. In the shop nearest me they're on a clear display that slants backward so they're all sort of on their side but not enough for the polish to get into the threads, which is better. Also I have decided that I need to visit Chicago. Or just anywhere in America lol it was the Nubar display that got me. xx

  18. Great post! This is always very informative for us in Europe, I like to see what you guys have!
    I'm surprised to see New Essence Color & Go, is great that they came to US in same time they came out in Europe!

  19. This is epic! I am in the US but I don't get to see all these where I live, so it is fun to go shopping with you!

    I totally love that you took ONE more picture, I absolutely agree with doing that HAhahahaha. Good for you!

    I also agree with making that trek into Chicago just for that Walgreens. It could have been an amazing experience if that sales associate had been friendly to you.

    Those Piggy Polish re-promotes as fall polishes are just so very sad looking. Were they thinking at all when they picked those colors or did someones child or cat do it?

  20. I love reading your display posts- thanks for keeping track of all these for us! And sorry to hear about your experience in the one store- how frustrating to feel like you're under surveillance!

    1. Oh, also: I've never seen Gosh bottles displayed upside down (I'm from Canada, for reference).

  21. First time reader and you've already got me commenting! I really hate salespeople with weird attitudes. Seems like they are in the wrong profession; aren't they supposed to help people and be nice? Why would anyone give a F if u took pics? I really enjoyed seeing them. I've got a wonky ankle and don't get to walk around all the stores anymore( sob) so you are really sweet to share. Now I can tell my daughter what to look for!

  22. I can't believe they just pasted a new sticker over the old one, lol! In better news, I'm finally heading over to Detroit this Saturday for some shopping, woohoo! Oh my poor, poor credit cards...

  23. Woooowwww. I want to buy them all. lol. especially the rose-shaped bottles.


Thank you for reading and commenting! I greatly appreciate knowing I'm not just talking to myself here. :) I'm moderating most comments now due to the spate of spammers who claim to be looking for sexy times.