Friday, September 24th, 2010


Zoya Fire & Ice Preview

Sneak Peek: Zoya Fire & Ice

I’ll have a full review with swatches of Zoya’s Fire & Ice collection on October 1st (can’t post anything more than this until then!), but for now, here’s a sneak peek at the nail plates for the collection.  How are we feeling about the six new shades so far?

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010

Zoya Wicked Collection
Nail Lacquers:: Kelly, Stacy, Burke

Less Wicked, More Wonderful

Zoya Wonderful Collection ($36.00 for all 6, or $7 each) is second of two fall collections from Zoya. It contains six shades: Kelly (rich gray shade with soft purple and blue undertones), Stacy (dark raspberry creme with purple and wine undertones), Burke (soft, dusty light red mulberry with very subtle brick and mauve tones), Kristi (pure, true crisp medium red cream with no strong warm or cool undertones), Cola (warm light brown cream with strong terracotta undertones), Shawn (warm, mossy yellow-toned medium green cream with olive undertones).

  • Kelly is a smoky, grayish blue that looks stormy and smoky at the same time. It’s not gray, it’s not blue, it’s not purple – it’s some variation that includes all three. Two coats.
  • Stacy is a dark burgundy wine–very vampy and dark. I like that it still looks like a wine; it never looks so dark that you can’t distinguish it from black. Two coats.
  • Burke is a softened berry red. I’ve seen this look dustier in other swatches, but it comes out pretty red for me. Two coats.
  • Kristi is a bright pop of neutral cherry red. Very close to pure/true red. Two coats.
  • Cola is a red-toned medium-dark brown–kind of reminds me of what cola looks like when it stains a white shirt, ha.
  • Shawn is a dark, mossy green with yellow undertones. Two coats.

All six have a cream finish, so there is absolutely no shimmer or glitter in these.  They dry down to a slightly glossy finish, but I always finish with a top coat in a regular manicure, though.  I didn’t need more than two coats for crisp, opaque color, and each shade was a dream to apply–pigmented, smooth, and even.   There really isn’t anything to complain about — either you love the colors or you don’t, but the formula will not disappoint!  My must-haves from this collection would be Kelly and Shawn.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 30/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 5/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: Excellent pigmentation for all six shades, easy to apply, and none needed more than two coats for a smooth, opaque finish. If you see a color you like, I think you’ll be happy with it.

AVAILABILITY: Zoya

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010

Zoya Wicked Collection
Nail Lacquers:: Edyta, Julieanne, Cheryl

Oh… So… Wicked

Zoya Wicked Collection ($36.00 for all 6, or $7 each) is one of two fall collections from Zoya.  It contains six shades:
Edyta (complex mixture of gold, olive, blue-green, and smoky grey with a sparkling metallic finish), Julieanne (unique purple sparkles with gold, peach, and yellow-green duochrome in a dark blue-purple base), Cheryl (smoky brown base completely packed with metallic copper, gold, and mahogany metallic microglitter), Karina (cool medium crimson red with swirls of pink, gold, and red foil metallic glitter), Carrie Ann (light warm scarlet red with copper, gold and pink-red foil metallic glitter), Kym (antique copper base with gold, copper, and pink reflective metallic sparkles).

  • Edyta is a tarnished, deep green with gold and green micro-shimmer. At first glance, it seems similar to Nubar Verde, but the latter is significantly greener–much more forest green. Just two coats.
  • Julieanne is a deep violet purple with blue undertones and gold and glowing violet shimmer flecks. Two coats.
  • Cheryl is a darkened chocolate brown base with warmer, amber and copper shimmer. It looks very rich and luxe. Two coats.
  • Karina is a ruby red with flecks of scarlet and ruby shimmer–more blue-based. Two coats.
  • Carrie Ann is a brightened cherry red with fiery red shimmer–more orange-based. Two coats.
  • Kym is a pinked/mauvey brown with gold and bronze shimmer. Almost metallic. Two coats.

The formula is just as you’d expect from Zoya:  smooth, nicely pigmented, and dries down beautifully.  The colors are very true-to-bottle, and I had no issues with application whatsoever.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: Excellent pigmentation for all six shades, easy to apply, and none needed more than two coats for a smooth, opaque finish. If you see a color you like, I think you’ll be happy with it.

AVAILABILITY: Zoya

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

Zoya Remove+

A Love Letter to Zoya Remove+

Dear Zoya Remove+,

I doubted your prowess once, but I never will again. I thought, “Surely, there are other polish removers that can do just as good of a job… maybe even better… and more readily available.” But no, I was wrong. So, so wrong.  Why did I stray?  Why did I try to fix something that wasn’t broken just to save a couple of bucks?

I did not realize how gentle you were on my cuticles and nails and fingers.  You never dried them out, but you always took care of business–you removed every last bit of polish without me having to exert much effort.  You made my life easy, and I didn’t even realize just how easy!   I would have people ask me, “What do you do to your nails? They are so healthy!” and I always answered so cavalierly… “Nothing!”  But it was you… all along it was you!

But I did stray, and I discovered how harsh other removers can be.  How cruel and cold and unloving!  They may remove the polish without much fuss, but they sure do leave a disaster in their wake.  Scaly, dried out skin, tortured cuticles, and the harsh scent of chemicals.

My dearest Remove+, you hold my heart, and I’ll stay true to you.  Know that you reign supreme in my heart of hearts!

All my love,
Temptalia

Zoya Remove+ is available in several sizes, depending on your polish removing needs. The bottle pictured above is their largest size at 32 oz., which retails for $25. I actually took advantage of Zoya’s deal where you can pick up their Color Lock System (which I love) PLUS the 32 oz. Remove+ for $40. (Which really means you end up with 40 oz. of Remove+ for the win!)

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 30/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 5/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

Recommendation:  In a convenient flip-top bottle that pumps out just enough remover, Zoya’s Remove+ does an excellent job at not only removing your polish but keeping your nails, cuticles, and fingertips soft, conditioned, and prepped for the next manicure/pedicure.

Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

When in doubt, use them all!

After reviewing Zoya’s Sparkle Collection, I couldn’t decide what color I wanted to wear.  I was totally torn!  So, instead, I decided to go for Skittles nails, which is pretty much what you’d expect–multi-colored nails resembling the colors of Skittles.  I’m a little OCD on some things, though, so I couldn’t use six; instead, I used five, so I could have one of each color on each hand.  Nice and even!  I used all the shades except Alegra (pretty, but it was my least favorite).  From thumb to pinky:  Nidhi, Gilda, Ivanka, Charla, and Mimi.  Just thought I’d share my fun for the week! :)

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010

Zoya Flash Collection
Zoya Nail Lacquer: Maura, Jolene, Jancyn, Robyn, Perrie, Dana (Natural Light)

Zoya Flash Collection Review, Photos, Swatches

Zoya Flash Collection includes six vibrant hues of cream finish polish. Each bottle will set you back $7 or you can grab the sampler (which is a set of all six in full-size) for $36.

  • Maura is a cherry tomato cream that goes opaque in one coat–seriously. You can easily use two or three, but this is one ultra pigmented red.
  • Jolene is a brightened blue-toned bubblegum pink. It’s very much a Barbie pink, and it only takes two coats to get solid color.
  • Jancyn is a brightened pumpkin orange cream with a slight lean towards yellow-orange. This is the only one of the six that I had slight formula problems with–it felt a little on the thick side, and I definitely needed three coats to get an even, streak-free look. It’s not a terrible polish, but compared to the others, it was a little more finnicky.
  • Robyn is a darkened, summer sky blue cream. It’s bright without being overwhelming or neon, and it’s easy to get total opaque color with just two coats.
  • Perrie is a darkened lilac cream with red undertones. Two coats is all you need for opaque color and a smooth, even finish.
  • Dana is a softly brightened fuchsia-red cream. It’s a pretty shade of rasperry-ish fuchsia that doesn’t look too bright, but it’s not going to hide in the background either. Like the other shades, this only needed two coats for full color coverage.

Had Zoya not also put out the Sparkle Collection, I could easily have seen myself enjoying these more, but I just find it pales in comparison to Sparkle. There are plenty of things to love about these brightened creams, but if I had to choose between the two collections, Sparkle gets my vote without question. Obviously, part of that is personal taste, but I felt like I hadn’t quite seen anything like the shades and finishes in Sparkle! Anyway…

The formula on all but Jancyn was smooth, even, and incredibly pigmented. You only needed two coats for solid, opaque color on each shade–again, with the exception of Jancyn–and on Maura, you could have gotten away with just one. It’s a smooth formula with a good consistency–not too thick, not too thin–which makes for an easy application. I didn’t have to experiment to find the “right” way to apply these. I liked that you could get nearly neon color without some of the application troubles neons pose. But to be clear, these are definitely creams and not neons, and they try with a slight glossiness rather than the near-matte of typical neons.

Even though the shades don’t seem completely unique or represent something new and totally different than ever before, the quality of the formula is excellent overall. Jancyn just felt a smidgen too thick, so perhaps a drop of thinner would solve that issue. Otherwise, these applied beautifully without streaking or bubbling and had a nice richness of color so you only needed two coats for full color.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: If you love cream finish polishes and are in need of some summery shades, Flash might be made for you!

Availability: Zoya

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

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