Friday, March 21st, 2014

Cult Nails Casual Elegance Collection
Cult Nails Casual Elegance Collection

Cult Nails Casual Elegance Nail Lacquer ($15.00 for 0.30 fl. oz.) is described as a “lilac creme.” It’s a cool-toned, bluish-lavender with a cream finish. It was nearly opaque in a single coat, though I applied two to be sure. The consistency was slightly thicker, but it applied evenly, didn’t pool along the edges, and didn’t bubble. MAC Bleu Velvet (LE, $16.00) is more muted, almost gray-ish. Essie Rock the Boat (P, $8.00) is lighter, less purple. See comparison swatches.

Cult Nails Intriguing Nail Lacquer ($15.00 for 0.30 fl. oz.) is described as a “periwinkle with gray tones and some holographic shimmer.” It’s a faded, medium, gray-tinged blue with very fine white shimmer. The shimmer appeared holographic in the bottle, but I couldn’t see it on the nail at all, no matter whether I was outdoors or indoors. The consistency wasn’t too thick or too thin, and it was opaque after two coats. Chanel Sky Line (LE, $27.00) is metallic, lighter. Zoya Skylar (P, $9.00) is darker, more shimmery. See comparison swatches.

Cult Nails Winter’s Light Nail Lacquer ($15.00 for 0.30 fl. oz.) is described as a “top coat with fine grain glitter.” It has a fuchsia-magenta jelly base with purple micro-glitter. In the initial release I read for this collection, it was recommended as a layering shade but could also be worn alone. On my index and middle fingers, I used three coats, and on my ring and pinky, I used two coats. I also showed one layer over black. The consistency is a little thick, and this one seemed to take longer to dry down. Once dry, it has a more matte finish that had some shine, but it was bumpy, so you’ll want to use two layers of top coat or a thicker top coat to smooth it out. Anna Sui Minnie Mouse Midnight Purple (200) (LE, $16.00) is cooler-toned, less glittery, more pigmented. See comparison swatches.

P.S. — If you’ve never purchased from Cult Nails before, if shop through this referral link, you’ll get $12 off $24 your first purchase.

The Glossover

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Casual Elegance

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Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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LE
product

Intriguing

A

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Winter's Light

A-

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Thursday, March 20th, 2014

Urban Decay Chaos Nail Color
Urban Decay Chaos & Bang Nail Colors

Urban Decay Chaos Nail Color ($15.00 for 0.30 fl. oz.) is described as a “vibrant cobalt blue with floating tonal pearl.” It’s a brightened, medum-dark blue with a purple tint–just enough to make it a cobalt blue–with lighter blue micro-shimmer. It had a glossy finish when it dried down, and it was mostly opaque after two coats–there was a shadow of visible nail line that sometimes was apparent depending on the angle/light. Formula X Beacon (P, $12.50) is darker. MAC Blue Gaze (LE, $16.00) is darker, less shimmery. Illamasqua Force (P, $17.00) is darker, less shimmery. Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Pond (P, $10.00) is less shimmery, slightly darker. China Glaze Blue Year’s Eve (LE, $7.50) is a touch darker. See comparison swatches.

Urban Decay Bang Nail Color ($15.00 for 0.30 fl. oz.) is described as a “bright orange with subtle floating iridescent pearl.” It’s a bright, medium orange with warm, orange-red undertones and molten gold micro-shimmer. It was opaque after two coats, and it applied evenly without visible brush strokes. Zoya Amy (P, $9.00) is more shimmery, brighter. Cult Nails Ay Poppy (DC, $12.00) is less shimmery. NARS TV Party (LE, $19.00) is less shimmery. MAC Morange (P, $16.00) is less shimmery. Illamasqua Gamma (P, $17.00) is brighter, less shimmery. China Glaze Riveting (LE, $7.50) has larger shimmer. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

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Chaos

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Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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LE
product

Bang

A

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

Formula X Spectrum Nail Lacquer
Formula X Spectrum Nail Lacquer

Formula X Spectrum Nail Lacquer ($12.50 for 0.40 fl. oz.) is described as a “red + gold micro-glitter in sheer crimson.” It’s a cool-toned, medium pinky-red with flecks of gold sparkle. It was mostly opaque after two coats, and the consistency was a little thin but not enough to impact the application negatively. This has gold sparkle, as compared to the cooler-toned, pinky-white sparkle of Solar Flare, but they were still very close. Zoya Bobbi (P, $9.00) is more shimmery, more muted. L’Oreal The Queen’s Might (LE) is redder, warmer. China Glaze 108 Degrees (LE, $7.50) is darker, cooler-toned. See comparison swatches.

Formula X Solar Flare Nail Lacquer ($12.50 for 0.40 fl. oz.) is described as a “pink micro-glitter in sheer strawberry.” It’s a vibrant, pink-shimmered, pinky-red with a pearly, metallic finish and a glossy shine. It was fully opaque after two coats, and the consistency wasn’t too thick or too thin and covered smoothly and evenly. Zoya Bobbi (P, $9.00) is more shimmery, pinker. L’Oreal The Queen’s Might (LE) is less shimmery. China Glaze 108 Degrees (LE, $7.50) is cooler-toned. See comparison swatches.

Formula X Astrolady Nail Lacquer ($12.50 for 0.40 fl. oz.) is described as a “pink + gold textured glitter.” It’s a light-medium, cool-toned pink with warm, golden sparkle and glitter. The finish is mostly matte, textured, and glittery. It had opaque color coverage with two coats of polish, and the consistency wasn’t too thick or too thin. It feels fairly bumpy/textured, so depending on your preference, you might want a couple of layers of top coat (which will also make it shiny). I don’t have anything like this in my stash that I can recall, due to that textured finish, so no dupes to recommend.

The Glossover

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Spectrum

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Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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P
product

Solar Flare

A

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Astrolady

A-

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

Formula X Nail Lacquers
Formula X Nail Lacquers

Formula X Free Fall Nail Lacquer ($12.50 for 0.40 fl. oz.) is described as a “light blue textured glitter.” It’s a pale, sky blue with a sugary, textured finish. It’s matte but shimmery, and this is one of the more textured polishes I’ve come across–it’s rough and almost gritty without being sharp. The color is really interesting, but the application and coverage were difficult and uneven. I couldn’t think of a dupe for this one, due to the more unique finish. When I tested this shade for wear, it did last for eight days with minor tip wear (almost as if the edge “sanded” away).

Formula X Photoelectric Nail Lacquer ($12.50 for 0.40 fl. oz.) is described as a “purple and blue micro glitter in sheer bright blue.” It’s a vibrant, just-shy-of-neon blue with green-ish undertones with blue and purple micro-glitter. It was mostly opaque after two coats, and it applied fairly evenly. Surprisingly, I wasn’t able to find any similar shades from what I’ve reviewed in the past (not to say there aren’t any, just that I don’t have any to share!). I typically get a full week of wear with very, very minor tip wear with this formula.

Formula X Prismatic Nail Lacquer ($12.50 for 0.40 fl. oz.) is described as a “emerald micro-glitter in sheer emerald.” It’s a muted, dusty, cool-toned green with lighter green and medium green micro-glitter. It was noticeably sheer with visible nail line after two coats. It didn’t apply as evenly as it should have. Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Man by Man (P, $10.00), Zoya Giovanna (P, $9.00), and Dior Samba (794) (LE, $24.00) are all darker and brighter. Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Chimera (P, $10.00) is less cool-toned. Zoya Zuza (P, $9.00) is still brighter. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

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Free Fall

B-

Product

6.5/10

Pigmentation

7.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

3/5

Results
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Dupes
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P
product

Photoelectric

A

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
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Prismatic

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Product

7/10

Pigmentation

7.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Monday, March 10th, 2014

Illamasqua PerfuzziNail Varnish
Illamasqua PerfuzziNail Varnish

Illamasqua PerfuzziNail Varnish ($17.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is a vibrant, sunshine yellow gold with gold micro-glitter and glitter. Zoya Kerry (P, $9.00) is metallic. MAC Immortal Gold (LE, $16.00) is less warm-toned. China Glaze Lighthouse (LE, $7.50) is similar but sheerer. China Glaze Champagne Bubbles (LE, $7.50) is less glittery. Zoya Solange (P, $9.00) is lighter. See comparison swatches.

This shade is exclusive to Bloomingdale’s, and it’s supposed to have a “Shattered Stars” formula/finish, but it was like glue. I don’t know if I’ve ever encountered such a thick polish before. I was more than a little surprised that it didn’t look like gluey, gloppy awfulness on the nails, as it actually looked half-decent, but it was noticeably thick. It was fairly opaque in a single coat but two are necessary for fully opaque color. It’s a gorgeous color, but something went very awry with the consistency, which made application more difficult, and you have to be really, really careful with how you place your hand as you wait for it to dry (which takes forever). I typically get a week or more out of Illamasqua’s formula.

The Glossover

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Perfuzzi

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Product

4/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

3/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

3/5

Results
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Sunday, March 9th, 2014

Illamasqua Fire Rose Shattered Star Nail Varnish
Illamasqua Shattered Star Nail Varnishes

Illamasqua Shattered Star Nail Varnish ($17.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is supposed to have a “multi-dimensional glitter finish.” These three shades had the same consistency: slightly thin but not watery, and they were easy to apply for even, smooth results. Trilliant wasn’t quite opaque after two coats, but Fire Rose and Marquise both were. The finish is somewhat shiny, sparkly, and glittery, but not as glossy as the traditional creams and frosts in the Nail Varnish range, so depending on the effect you’re after, you may want a top coat. Marquise was the most matte of the three, and it was also the most textured. This formula lasts a full seven days on me with minor tip wear but no chipping.

Fire Rose Shattered Star Nail Varnish ($17.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as a “shattered pink.” It’s a light-medium, rosy pink with silver shimmer and micro-glitter. It had opaque color coverage after two coats, and it was easy to apply and work with. I couldn’t think of any dupes for this one!

Marquise Shattered Star Nail Varnish ($17.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as a “shattered orange.” It’s a vibrant, medium-dark orange-red with lighter tangerine shimmer and micro-glitter. It had full coverage color with two coats of polish, and I didn’t have any issues applying it. This one was a bit more textured than the other three, so depending on what you like, you may want to use a thick top coat to smooth it out (which will also give it a glossy finish). Zoya Destiny (P, $9.00) is exactly the same. Zoya Myrta (P, $9.00) is less glittery. See comparison swatches.

Trilliant Shattered Star Nail Varnish ($17.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as a “shattered champagne.” It’s a muted, pinky-beige with silver shimmer and micro-glitter. It was mostly opaque after two coats, but there was a little sparseness overall that kept it from full coverage. Zoya Lux (P, $10.00) is lighter, pinker, and has holographic glitter. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

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Fire Rose

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Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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P
product

Marquise

A

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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product

Trilliant

A-

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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