Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Geographically Diverse Displays

As promised yesterday, today I have displays I came across in my recent travels, starting with Houston, where I was glad to be able to meet up with my friend Mel, who writes Delicious Color. She very kindly indulged my desire to go to an HEB store. The main thing I saw there that I can't get here were the Orchid polishes, of which there were multiple displays (and a sale going on, so I picked up several colors to bring home with me).

All About the Bling had Funky Monkey, Wine-O, Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time, High Maintenance, You Can't Afford Me, Hot Mess, He Loves Me I Love Him Not, and Bling It On.

Top Picks contained Lone Star Blue, Cougarville, Black Tie Affair, Go Bananas, Orange You Glad I'm Here, The Teal Thing, Sugar and Spice and Nothing Nice, and Steel Guitar.

Show Your Team Spirit had You Complete Me Top Coat, Orange You Glad You're From Texas, I Bleed Maroon, Grass Stains, MVP, Playmaker, Coin Toss, and Black Tie Affair.

Many Shades of Blue held Robin's Egg, The Teal Thing, Off the Deep End, Teal Me A Secret, Royal Engagement, Starry Night, Lone Star Blue, and When Lightning Strikes.

Oui Bit French was comprised of Love at First White, Glass of Bubbly, I Met Him in Prism, Bedazzled, Pretty in Pink, French Kiss, Barely There, and Mother of Pearl.

HEB also had Minnie and Hello Kitty polish in bottles with elaborate tops which I'd never seen anywhere else before. Despite the adorableness of the bottles, I didn't buy any because it said it was non-toxic and peelable, which generally means the polish is for play, not for a grown up to wear for a full mani and expect it to hold up.

Not even a week after I got home from Houston, I left for my return trip to Minsk. As before, most of my time was spent working or sleeping, and this time I had a male colleague traveling with me, but I still managed to make some time for nail polish shopping. The stock in the places I looked at last time was pretty similar to what I saw on my last visit, though there were enough new things to pique my interest. A couple of the mall kiosks had glittery Golden Rose colors:

Given the disappearance of the old version of Sally Hansen Pacific Blue stateside, I got a little thrill when I saw a bottle in the mall in Minsk:

On my last visit, the Dance Legend colors I saw were pretty much limited to plain cremes and shimmers but this time there were some glitters and textures on offer:

I was pleased with myself that I managed to buy some of the Golden Rose and some of the Dance Legend from the kiosks even though neither of the ladies I had to talk to spoke English, and I don't speak or read Russian—there was a lot of pointing and pantomiming painting my nails, and I even took photos at one place so I could point at those. Happy as that made me, I was equally thrilled to find a cosmetics store with open stock that I hadn't been to on my last trip even though it was fairly close to the hotel. At first I thought it was a perfume store, since that's what I could mostly see as I walked by one night.

Something made me look more closely, though, and you can imagine how my heart beat faster when I saw a big Essence display, right out in an aisle where anyone could look at and pick up the polish regardless of any language barrier.

The store was closed for the day but you can bet I took a photo of the sign on the door so I'd know when to go back (fortunately hours are posted in numerals same as here so I knew what they meant, though it got a little confusing when places had different schedules on different days of the week). And go back I did, to find a veritable jackpot of polish. The Essence display I'd spied through the window turned out to have a whole second side to it, with even more Colour & Go colors, some Nail Art toppers, and a sadly picked over Beach Cruisers display.

I was in such a frenzy that I failed to take a photo of that whole first side, but I did get this detail shot with the Nail Candies and Cracking colors.

I was in a frenzy because everywhere I turned, there was more polish, most of it brands I hadn't seen (or hadn't seen up close) before, like the Podium Gel Effect by BelorDesign.

I think maybe something got lost in translation with the Happy Nails Trend Color line, as I saw only pinks and red and mauves, which are classic colors, not so much trendy, but maybe the other shades had sold out already.

I have seen Rimmel polish before, of course, but not the Brit Manicure line.

Max Factor hasn't sold polish in the States in I don't know how long, but there were plenty of shades in this Glossfinity display in Minsk.

I have never ever seen a Catrice display in person before, despite having many of their colors thanks to kind laides who have swapped with me over the years. Faced with this bounty, my brain nearly shorted out; it was a struggle to decide which I could take home with me given how many other pretties I also wanted.

It did help somewhat that the featured collection was Une, Deux, Trois, which is all cremes in shades I feel I have an excess of already.

There was a huge Eveline display with both a Colour Instant line of polish and one called miniMAX in amongst a lot of other makeup; to the left you can see part of a bowl of polishes which is where the LuxVisage colors were (I shared some of those in the display post from my previous trip and in swatches during Texture Week).

Finally, there was a spinning rack with polishes and nail art decals from MILV, another new-to-me brand.

I have no idea what the sales associates at the register thought of me buying so much nail stuff at this last store—we didn't share enough common words to discuss it, which maybe is for the best. They seemed amused, if anything, which is fine by me. I did buy some more typcial souvenirs on my trip, like chocolate and handcrafted items, but the bulk of my spending was on polish, which I do hope to swatch at some point, though I can't promise it will be soon.


  1. WOW that looks like somewhere I would have spent way too much time and money! Can't wait to see swatches :)

  2. Great displays! Loving the DLs :-D

  3. OHHH - so many pretties - *feeling a bit envious LOL*

  4. I love reading your posts! So entertaining. :)

  5. This was an amazing post... so many wonderful nail polishes!!
    I love Golden Rose polishes and MaxFactor :)

  6. Jealous! Those extended essence displays always make my heart race. <3

  7. It would be so hard not to buy one of everything when you don't have easy access to them like the Catrices....look forward to seeing what you picked up!

  8. I love these posts!
    And I had both a Minnie and a Hello Kitty polish in two different swaps recently. I love the bottles! :)

  9. I don't know the Orchid brand... Many Golden Rose nail polishes, I find the brand quite cheap and often of a good quality. Eveline is a Polish brand. I'd love to see Dance Legends in our stores!

  10. I think I would have lost my mind and bought everything. I'm a somewhat picky polish buyer at home, but when I'm away all that goes out the window!

  11. Max Factor's full size and mini bottles, luckily, are sold even here in Italy. They're not that cheap, though, and they hardly go further than a simple shimmer. Full size ones are usually pastels only, here.
    That Brit Manicure range by Rimmel here is called Salon PRO and they retail a quite high price, usually around 5€ even if I happen to find them for sale at 2,99€.

    1. Oh, well. I had a quick search and this Brit Manicure line is meant to be part of the SalonPro line and should be sold here too, but I've actually never found it around. On their website they state it retails 7,90€ a bottle...a bit too expensive for their quality :D

  12. Oh how awesome!! I can totally imagine your excitement about all the new polishes and brands - yesterday I found Models Own polishes for the first time EVER in a store near where I live! :D

  13. Anyone near an HEB, they have the Orchid polishes for 2.97 this week.

  14. I felt a sudden need to go to Russia.

  15. Polish frenzy! I would have been in one too, that store looks like fun! Thanks for sharing, I can't wait to see what lovely colors you picked up!

  16. How did I miss seeing this til now? You guys, I got to watch Karen in action taking pictures, and it's pretty awesome. She does it FAST.

    I probably wouldn't have been brave enough to shop in the kiosks where you had to try to talk to people. I love the big store though. I really loved Max Factor when I was in high school, although in later years I do remember thinking that they were way too conservative with their colors.

    I'm looking forward to seeing the Minsk swatchfest and also eventually the Orchid one - I think I was too busy playing tour guide to pay much attention to what you actually bought!

  17. I can just imagine your excitement when you found out all the "free to touch-foreign brand" displays, I would feel the same visiting a Ulta (or any beauty store) in the US!!

  18. Is essence European? Because I don't usually find much of it in San Diego. Right now I'm in Germany & there is a display at my local supermarket full of stuff, some of which I had never seen back home.

    1. Valeria, yes, Essence is European--I want to say German based but I'm not sure on that.

  19. i love many shades of blues :D
    and those minnie and kitty bottles are so delightful, gotta love them *.*


Thank you for reading and commenting! I greatly appreciate knowing I'm not just talking to myself here. :)