Monday, April 11th, 2011


Coat Azure, French Affair, Nice is Nice

Essie A French Affair Collection

For Spring, Essie has launched six shades ranging from blue to nude in their A French Affair Collection. Essie can be found at various etailers and salons, but also through beauty.com ($8 per bottle).

Coat Azure (breathing taking medium blue with shimmer), French Affair (sophisticated soft lavender pink), Nice is Nice (whimsical light lavender), Sand Tropez (soft sandy beige), Topless & Barefoot (barely there soft beige pink), and Kisses & Bisses (kiss of pink shimmer – perfect to layer over any color).

  • Coat Azure is a dusty cornflower blue with soft microshimmer. I used two coats. China Glaze Sky High Top seems similar but brighter.
  • French Affair is a pale pink with cool undertones and a cream finish. I used three coats. It is cooler-toned than Essie Neo Whimsical.
  • Nice is Nice is a pinked lavender with a cream finish. I used two coats, and there was a hint of visible nail line. It is similar to MAC’s Little Girl Type, but darker and not as cool-toned. It’s also more pigmented and less cool-toned than Essie Lilacism.
  • Sand Tropez is a muted, beige with a touch of gray in a cream finish. I used three coats. It seems a bit similar to Essie Body Language.
  • Topless & Barefoot is a warmed over light-medium beige cream. I used two coats. I couldn’t think of a possible dupe for this one.
  • Kisses & Bisses is a sheer, warmed white base with a duochromed, opalescent shimmer that flashes pink and gold. I used three coats in the swatches. Essie recommends it for layering, and if you’re not into sheer polishes, it would work well as a layering polish. I did like it on its own; it gave a soft, sheer look but the duochrome finish of the shimmer added interest. Zoya Bailey seems similar, perhaps not as much of a duochrome.

my thoughts on the formula: Essie’s spring shades is a good mix of soft colors and pastels with a formula that applies easily and none of the pastel shades have a chalky look to them. I found about half needed two coats, but overall, three seemed like the ideal amount. The formula wasn’t too thick or thin, and it flowed evenly onto the nail. With a base/top coat, I had only minor tip wear after a week’s wear of Essie’s formula.

The Glossover

product

Essie A French Affair Collection Swatches, Photos, Review

B+
It's a very spring-themed collection, and I think Essie did it without going full throttle on pastels, too. I like the inclusion of two shimmers amongst four creams, too.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4/5

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Thursday, April 7th, 2011

Estee Lauder Shimmering Bronze Nail Lacquer
Estee Lauder Shimmering Bronze Nail Lacquer

Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess: Shimmering Bronze

Estee Lauder Shimmering Bronze Nail Lacquer ($19.00 for 0.30 fl. oz.) is a shimmering, red-enriched bronze with subtle metallic threads running through an otherwise copper and bronze shimmered finish. I used two coats for complete opacity, and it applied easily. The polish flowed without being too thick or thin, and each coat was nicely pigmented. I have no problem achieving a full week’s worth of wear out of Estee Lauder’s formula (with a proper base/top coat, of course). For swatches, I used Zoya’s Anchor and Armor for my base and top coats.

A major downside to the product is the quantity: a mere 0.30 fl. oz., while most lacquers weigh in at 0.50 fl. oz. It seems customary for some of the higher-end brands to average just below that at 0.40 fl. oz., but it still makes this bottle seem small (even though you’d never think it, based on packaging’s appearance).

The Glossover

LE
product

Shimmering Bronze

A-
It's a decadent, summery bronze. I like that the finish isn't a full-on metallic but part-shimmer, part-metallic (Estee Lauder calls it "pearl"). I think it gives it luster while maintaining a sleek look.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

Rescue Beauty Lounge Recherche Nail Lacquer
Rescue Beauty Lounge Recherche Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Recherche Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Recherche Nail Lacquer ($18.00 for 0.4 fl. oz.) is a new and limited shade from the Iconic/Ironic Collection. It’s described as “a purplish dark brown.” I almost re-took the photos for this polish, because on my desk, it looked rather brownish when I peeked at it from the corner of my eye, but upon closer inspection, it does have this purpled murkiness.

It looks like muddied eggplant purple in the bottle, but on nails, it’s much more sophisticated than that. The subtle red undertones seemed to pull out quite a bit for me, despite my warmer skin tone, but it gave it a brightened quality that added interest. It’s a smoky, blackened eggplant with a little red, little brown.

my thoughts on the formula: These are richly pigmented lacquers that have nuances in both the color and finishes. Each color is well-thought out, and I’ve yet to come across a poor performer in the brand’s color range. I used two coats for opaque coverage.

The Glossover

rescueBeautyRecherche

Rescue Beauty Lounge Recherche Nail Lacquer

A
I think this is a great dark shade for spring, because there is a little dustiness within the smoky purple that makes it less intimidating as your traditional vamp.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Monday, April 4th, 2011

Rescue Beauty Lounge Iconoclast Nail Lacquer
Rescue Beauty Lounge Iconoclast Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Iconoclast Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Iconoclast Nail Lacquer ($18.00 for 0.4 fl. oz.) is a new and limited shade from the Iconic/Ironic Collection. It’s described as “a richly pigmented ebony with layers of fine glitter, giving it depth and a metallic, mica-like finish.” Iconoclast is an inky black with moments of purple and blue, depending on just how the light hits the lacquer and the strength of the light. In natural light, you can clearly see the micro-shimmer but the iridescence and play of color doesn’t really come through until you’re in the sunlight–then the multi-colored shimmers reflect and shine.

my thoughts on the formula: These are richly pigmented lacquers that have nuances in both the color and finishes. Each color is well-thought out, and I’ve yet to come across a poor performer in the brand’s color range. I used two coats for opaque coverage.

The Glossover

LE
product

Iconoclast

A
In natural light, you can clearly see the micro-shimmer but the iridescence and play of color doesn’t really come through until you’re in the sunlight–then the multi-colored shimmers reflect and shine.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Thursday, March 31st, 2011

MAC Quite Cute Nail Lacquers
Ice Cream Cake, Little Girl Type, Mischievous Mint

MAC Quite Cute Collection: Nail Lacquers

MAC Quite Cute Collection ($14.00 for 0.4 fl. oz.) features three light shades of limited edition nail lacquer. They include: Ice Cream Cake (creamy blue pink), Little Girl Type (creamy pale lavender), and Mischievous Mint (creamy pale blue mint).

  • Ice Cream Cake is a darkened cotton candy pink with a strong blue base with a cream finish. I used two coats. It is similar to Essie’s Splash of Grenandine–slightly more blue-based.
  • Little Girl Type is a light lavender with a cream finish. I used two coats. It is similar to China Glaze’s Light as Air.
  • Mischievous Mint is a bluish mint green with a cream finish. I used two coats. It is bluer but similar in lightness to China Glaze’s Re-Fresh Mint. This is much, much lighter than last year’s Peppermint Patti, and it is a blue-based mint green.

my thoughts on the formula: The consistency was thick but watery–not terribly so, but noteworthy nonetheless. I used two coats on all, because it was difficult to get thin to medium-thin coats because of how the brush splayed out. In all three polishes, the bristles of each brush were a bit wonky, which made it more difficult to get really clean, even coats. I recommend being patient, because the slight wateriness in the formula will cause streaking if you apply before the coat dries down.

The Glossover

macQuiteCuteNail

MAC Quite Cute Nail Lacquers Swatches, Photos, Review

B-
The formula wasn't too difficult to work with, but it could be improved. Make sure you roll these before applying, because these definitely needed some mixing to minimize the watery consistency.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

3.5/5

Results
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Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

Urban Decay Rollergirl Nail Kit
Urban Decay Rollergirl Nail Kit

Urban Decay Rollergirl Nail Kit

Urban Decay Rollergirl Nail Kit ($28.00 for 6 x 0.17 fl. oz.) features six miniature-sized nail polishes. It includes these shades: Fame (champagne shimmer), Love Train (opalescent shimmer), Miss T (bright orchid fuchsia), Superfreak (gold shimmer base with gold micro-glitter), Woodstock (hot pink), and Xanadu (sheer purple base with purple glitter). Each polish is 0.17 fl. oz, so the total amount of polish in the kit is the equivalent of 1.02 fl. oz, or about two full-sized nail polishes.  I used Zoya’s Anchor & Armor as my base/top coats unless otherwise specified.

  • Fame is a soft champagne with subtle pink undertones and white shimmer. I used three coats and still had a hint of visible nail line. China Glaze Hybrid is a bit darker and more opaque but similar.
  • Superfreak is a tarnished gold with micro-glitter and a metallic finish. It dries to a matte metallic finish (I didn’t use a top coat in the photos, to show you the natural finish). It is very similar to Dior Timeless Gold–maybe a smidgen lighter but they’re quite close. This shade was nicely pigmented so I only needed two coats.
  • Xanadu is a fuchsia-tinted jelly base with violet and fuchsia glitter. I used three coats, and it still had a sheerness in the base color, but it was expected based on the description (it is not meant to be opaque).  It’s like a red-toned version of Illamasqua Boo.
  • Miss T is a vibrant fuchsia magenta with subtle fuchsia micro-shimmer strewn through the base.  Essie’s Bermuda Shorts was the closest I could think of, but it is pinker (not as magenta).
  • Woodstock is a neon hot pink, and it dries to a matte finish–almost like patent leather. I used two coats–the flash photo is taken without a top coat to show the finish.  Zoya’s Gilda is similar in color but not in finish.  China Glaze Rich & Famous also seems similar but perhaps a bit darker.
  • Love Train is a sheer, muted white with subtle opal iridescence and micro-shimmer. Think Chanel Pearl Drop but cool-toned.

my thoughts on the formula: The formula on these was really easy to work with–it applied smoothly, evenly, and nothing took too long to dry. Both Xanadu and Love Train are sheerer shades but the descriptions say exactly that–can’t fault them there–while Superfreak, Miss T, and Woodstock have excellent color pay off.

I love the concept of miniature-sized nail polishes, because you get to try a variety of shades without committing to the price tag of full bottles.  However, as someone with longer fingers and bigger hands, it can take some getting used to holding the small-sized caps, even though the brush applicator is full-sized (thankfully!).

The Glossover

udRollergirlNail

Urban Decay Rollergirl Nail Kit Swatches, Photos, Review

A-
It seems like this year is bringing out quite a few cool-toned collections, and the new Rollergirl Nail Kit from Urban Decay definitely leans cool, but what I like about it is the finishes and vibrancies make them easy to wear against warmer skin tones, too.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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