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Illamasqua Radium Nail Varnish

Illamasqua Radium Nail Varnish
Illamasqua Radium Nail Varnish

Illamasqua Toxic Nature Collection: Radium

Illamasqua Radium Nail Varnish (£13.50 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as an “acidic lime, shimmer finish” shade, which is new for the Toxic Nature collection. It’s a beautiful neon chartreuse green with yellow undertones and iridescent green and chartreuse micro-shimmer. Though currently only available through Illamasqua directly, it should make its way to Sephora next month.

my thoughts on the formula: Illamasqua’s formula is richly pigmented, smooth, and easy to apply. It’s a thicker formula but not gloppy. I did notice very slight brush strokes in the finish under really bright light. Radium is almost opaque in one coat, though I swatched with two for good measure. I get a full week of wear with Illamasqua Nail Varnishes with minimal tip wear and no chips.

Illamasqua Nail Varnish Radium
Radium
Radium
9.5
Product
10
Pigmentation
9.5
Texture
10
Longevity
4.5
Application
97%
Total

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Zoya Mod Mattes Swatches, Reviews, Photos


Phoebe, Mitzi, Lolly

Zoya Mod Mattes Swatches, Reviews, Photos

Zoya Mod Mattes Collection includes three limited edition, matte shades for summer. These shades include: Phoebe (shimmered blue with a matte finish), Mitzi (chartreuse with a matte finish), and Lolly (pink with a matte finish).

  • Phoebe is a bright cerulean blue with very faint white micro-shimmer and has a matte finish. It was opaque in two coats.
  • Mitzi is a bright yellow-based chartreuse green with a matte finish. I used three coats, but I still could not get a nice smooth, even finish. This shade was the hardest to apply without getting an uneven surface.
  • Lolly is a medium-dark pink–almost neon but not quite there–with a matte finish. I used two coats for opaque color, and this shade applied the smoothest of three, because it was also the most pigmented.

Make sure you check out the swatches for my final attempt with Mitzi–hopefully you can see the difference between the variations of coat thickness and use.

my thoughts on the formula: I had a lot of trouble with these; I could not figure out the trick to an even, smooth finish. I expected some of the contouring of my natural nails to peek through but didn’t expect so much unevenness as a reslt of the polish drying down. Even though the shades are opaque on the nail, they look almost streaky.   After five or six attempts, I did find that thick coats were key–one thinner coat followed by a much thicker coat (and maybe even another) gave it a must smoother finish.  Mattes, without a top coat, tend to wear for shorter periods of time; I wore Mitzi for three days before it chipped a bit (no top coat).

Zoya Mod Mattes Swatches, Reviews, Photos

C+
7.5
Product
8.5
Pigmentation
7.5
Texture
8
Longevity
3.5
Application
78%
Total

Zoya Summertime Swatches, Reviews, Photos


Areej, Breezi, Kieko

Zoya Summertime Swatches, Reviews, Photos

Zoya Summertime Collection includes six cream finish shades for the summer. The shades include: Areej (pink with an opaque cream finish), Breezi (soft, dusty medium cerulean blue with an opaque cream finish), Kieko (warm, red toned dusty oilght purple with berry tones with an opaque cream finish), Mira (blue-toned medium purple with dusty lavender tone an an opaque cream finish), Sooki (bright, clean, crisp cool cherry red cream with subtle jelly finish), and Tamsen (medium warm brick red with strong orange tones with an opaque cream finish).

  • Areej is a medium-dark magenta pink with a creamy finish. I used two coats. It reminded me of Barielle’s Daring Dahlia without the shimmer.
  • Breezi is a medium-dark cerulean blue with a creamy finish. I used three coats. It is a dustier, more muted version of SpaRitual’s Crystal Eyes. It is darker and more muted than Zoya’s Robyn.
  • Kieko is a medium magenta-tinged purple with red undertones and a creamy finish. I used two coats. It seemed similar to an older limited edition shade by MAC called For Fun.
  • Mira is a dusty grape purple with a blue-base and creamy finish. I used two coats. It darker and less blue-based than Orly Charged Up and SpaRitual Illume.
  • Sooki is a bright cherry red with a creamy finish. I used two coats, but it was almost opaque in one. It’s similar to China Glaze Cherry Pie without the shimmer and China Glaze Hey Sailor.
  • Tamsen is a rich, orange-based red with a creamy finish. I used two coats. Essie’s Red Nouveau and Rescue Beauty Lounge Chinoise are a touch lighter and China Glaze Ruby Deer and Butter London Pillar Box Red are quite similar.

my thoughts on the formula: Zoya’s cream formula is beautiful here–thin without being runny or watery or too sheer. With the exception of Breezi, they applied in two coats for a creamy, opaque look.

Zoya Summertime Swatches, Reviews, Photos

A
9.5
Product
9.5
Pigmentation
9.5
Texture
9.5
Longevity
4
Application
93%
Total

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Zoya Sunshine Swatches, Reviews, Photos


Apple, Faye, Kimmy

Zoya Sunshine Swatches, Reviews, Photos

Zoya Sunshine Collection includes six metallic finish shades for the summer. The shades are: Apple (luminous yellow-toned apple green packed with gold metallic sparkle), Faye (bronzed mauve with purple and brown undertones flooded with rich gold sparkle), Kimmy (gleaming metallic candy apple red brightened by gold sparkle), Reva (cool-toned strawberry red with glowing golden metallic sparkle), Rica (warm light coral with pink and orange tones and heavy gold metallic sparkle), and Tanzy (light, bright tangerine orange with yellow gold metallic sparkle).

  • Apple is a lightened apple green with green and gold metallic sparkle. I used two coats, but I think three would have been better. Zoya’s Ivanka is a much darker shade of green — more emerald, while this is more spring-like.
  • Faye is a red-based a magenta mauve base with golden copper sparkle. I used three coats, but there was still some visible nail line. I couldn’t think of a dupe for this shade.
  • Kimmy is a bright pinky red (almost cherry red) with gold sparkle. This one was really rich and opaque–I used two coats but one was almost sufficient. It reminded me of Duri’s Bombshell but with more gold shimmer. It is similar to Zoya’s Nidhi though this has gold sparkle and is less orange-based. Nubar’s Rosso is also similar but it has less pronounced gold sparkle–more glass-flecked finish.
  • Reva is a plummy raspberry with red and copper sparkle. I used two coats. Zoya’s Alegra has a similar overall feel but they’re less dupes and more cousins–Alegra is lighter, pinker, and less nuanced. Zoya’s Gloria is a lighter, more multi-colored variation of Reva.
  • Rica is a darkened coraled pink with bright gold and copper sparkle. I used two coats, but the result wasn’t quite opaque. It’s a sparklier version of China Glaze Strawberry Fields.
  • Tanzy is a brightened, tangerine orange with orange-copper sparkle. I used three coats. It’s a sparkly version of China Glaze Cruisin’.

my thoughts on the formula: The formula here seemed a bit inconsistent. A couple–like Kimmy and Reva–were good with two coats while the majority needed three coats. I felt that these really required a full wait between coats, because otherwise the glitter looks patchy and some bald spots can appear–while shades from the Sparkle collection had a glitter formula that spread really evenly no matter what.  These seemed more finicky.

Zoya Sunshine Swatches, Reviews, Photos

B+
8.5
Product
8
Pigmentation
9
Texture
9.5
Longevity
4
Application
87%
Total

Rescue Beauty Lounge Ani Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Ani Nail Lacquer
Rescue Beauty Lounge Ani Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Ani Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Ani Nail Lacquer ($18.00 for 0.4 fl. oz.) is a semi-sheer champagne beige with white shimmer and almost metallic-like threads running through the color.  It’s officially described as, “shimmery, semi-transparent golden beige, as if you could dip your nails in nacre.”

my thoughts on the formula: Typically, Rescue Beauty Lounge’s lacquers are opaque, but this one is semi-sheer though deliberately so–you can’t fault something for being exactly what it claims.  It still applied smoothly and easily, while wearing a full week.

Rescue Beauty Lounge Nail Lacquer Ani
Ani
Ani
A

Limited Edition

10
Product
10
Pigmentation
10
Texture
10
Longevity
4
Application
98%
Total

butter LONDON Pillar Box Red Nail Lacquer

butter LONDON Pillar Box Red Nail Lacquer
butter LONDON Pillar Box Red Nail Lacquer

butter LONDON Pillar Box Red Nail Lacquer

butter LONDON Pillar Box Red Nail Lacquer ($14.00 for 0.40 fl. oz.) is a cherry red with a decadent cream finish.  It’s nearly pigmented enough to use only one coat, though I swatched with two.  This is only a slightly pink-based red but it’s much closer to a true red than blue or orange-based.  Though I’ve never seen a pillar box in real life, as far as I can tell, this seems quite similar in color!

my thoughts on the formula: This cream finished polish has such a smooth, maneuverable formula–nicely pigmented (needed only two coats) and applies beautifully without bubbling or streaking. It wore for a full seven days without chipping.  The formula was thin without being watery and made for really easy application.

Butter London Nail Lacquer Pillar Box Red
10
Product
10
Pigmentation
10
Texture
10
Longevity
4.5
Application
99%
Total

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