Monday, September 26th, 2011


Izzy, Kissy, Holly

Zoya Gems & Jewels Collection for Holiday 2011

Zoya Gems & Jewels Collection includes three shimmery shades along with three glittery shades. Each color retails for $8.00.

  • Izzy is a darkened pink with bright fuchsia-pink shimmer and a metallic-like finish. I used two coats for opaque color. China Glaze Endurance is similar but has silvery-white micro-glitter so the finishes are quite different. It’s not as red-based as Zoya Gilda.
  • Holly is a luxurious emerald green with lighter green shimmer. Really rich and decadent–opaque in nearly one coat but I used two for swatches. Very Christmas-y green. It’s not like China Glaze Mistletoe Kisses, which has a lot of silvery-white glitter, nor China Glaze Emerald Sparkle, which has a much darker base. It is darker and smoother compared to Zoya Ivanka.
  • Noel is a metallic medium-dark silvered blue with silver shimmer. It was opaque in two coats. The base color seems similar to Zoya Crystal, but Crystal has gold sparkle in it.
  • Kissy is a pink and ruby red glittery layering coat with holographic bar glitter. I used two coats, and it was mostly opaque.
  • Rina is an emerald green shimmered base with emerald green and teal bar glitter. I used two coats, and it was more opaque than not but you could see some nail visible in spots.
  • Twila is a medium-dark blue shimmered base with brighter blue bar glitter.

The formula on the shimmery shades (Izzy, Holly, and Noel) is beyond phenomenal. I don’t know if I’ve ever used such a perfectly applying polish before. Each coat is extremely pigmented (I used two for all six shades here, but one is almost enough on the shimmery shades), but the consistency is fluid and flowing without being watery nor thick. I had really good wear out of Holly layered with Twila (seven days with minimal tip wear and no chips).

I was surprised at how opaque the layering shades were, actually. You could easily wear them alone, though I think they work really well layered, too. The only downside is removal is a bit messy–you can see as I swatch through more and more combinations using the glittery shades how I still have residue on my skin. It’s not impossible, but they take a little more work and time than a cream finish (which is par for the course).

I found the bar glitter to be fun and something I’ve personally never tried before, so I had some experimenting to do (will have a whole post up next with various combinations and layering, so stay tuned!). It’s perfect for the holidays, and it reminds me of tinsel.  You’ll need to make sure to take care of the edges so you don’t have any stray glitter pieces extending past the edge of your nail, but the glitter spreads evenly without trouble.  I can’t wait to rock these closer to the holidays!

The Glossover

product

Zoya Gems & Jewels Collection Swatches, Photos, Reviews

A+
The glitter shades are the most unique out of the bunch, but I still think the way the shimmery shades came out is great--and not necessarily shades I have dupes of. The formula is so easy to work with. I knew when I saw these at Cosmoprof, they would be good, but they're even better.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

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Sunday, September 25th, 2011

Nubar Pink Flame Nail Lacquer
Nubar Pink Flame Nail Lacquer

Nubar Pink Flame Nail Lacquer

Nubar Pink Flame Nail Lacquer ($7.49 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is a red and orange duochrome. First it’s a vibrant, pinky-red, then it shifts to a coppery orange. I love the intensity of the polish; it’s so vibrant that it looks like it glows, which is difficult to capture in a photo! It’s shimmering without being metallic or overly frosty. The formula was a good balance between thick and thin, so the polish flowed easily and evenly across the nail and yielded opaque results in two coats. I usually get a full week of wear with minimal tip wear with Nubar’s polishes, including Pink Flame, which I tested a few months ago (and yes, only just reviewed now).

The Glossover

P
product

Pink Flame

A+
This is a really lovely polish, and the fact that it is duochrome makes it more fun! The duochrome is noticeable, too.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

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Saturday, September 24th, 2011

bareMinerals Bare Minerals The Paradise Found Eyeshadow Duo
bareMinerals Bare Minerals The Paradise Found Eyeshadow Duo

Debuting at the beginning of October, bareMinerals Bare Minerals The Paradise Found Eyeshadow Duo ($20.00 for 0.10 oz.) is a mix of orange and green with Nirvana and Utopia. The new pressed eyeshadow formula has a SeaNutritive Mineral Complex that gives the shadow a “creamy, silky smooth” texture with “seamless blendability” and “stay-true color.” It’s supposed to be long-wearing whether worn alone or with primer–you shouldn’t see any creasing or fading. I’ve tested various combinations of shades from the duos and quads, and I’ve happily achieved ten hours of solid wear without a primer underneath. For a review of the packaging, please read my original review.

Nirvana is a softened orange with a frosted finish. It’s not a full-on orange but it’s more orange than peach. It has good pigmentation and the texture is smooth, but it’s not as buttery as other shades in the range. theBalm Mischievous Marissa is a bit more copper. Inglot #368 is more orange and matte in finish.

Utopia is deep, dark forest green with subtle olive-brown undertones. It has a satiny finish with a drier texture that’s still smooth but not as buttery or as dense. Despite the dryness, it yields good color payoff. It’s browner compared to shades that seem similar, like OCC Poison. However, it’s less green compared to shades like MAC Femme Noir and MAC Diana Undercover.

The Glossover

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bareMinerals Paradise Found Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

B
The duo is still good, but it's one of the weaker duos I've tried from Bare Escentuals' new pressed line-up. It is, however, a very unusual pairing of colors!

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Friday, September 23rd, 2011

bareMinerals The Honeymoon Phase Eyeshadow Duo
bareMinerals The Honeymoon Phase Eyeshadow Duo

bareMinerals The Honeymoon Phase Eyeshadow Duo

Debuting at the beginning of October, bareMinerals The Honeymoon Phase Eyeshadow Duo ($20.00 for 0.10 oz.) is a mix of pink and gray with Giddy and Do Not Disturb. The new pressed eyeshadow formula has a SeaNutritive Mineral Complex that gives the shadow a “creamy, silky smooth” texture with “seamless blendability” and “stay-true color.” It’s supposed to be long-wearing whether worn alone or with primer–you shouldn’t see any creasing or fading. I’ve tested various combinations of shades from the duos and quads, and I’ve happily achieved ten hours of solid wear without a primer underneath. For a review of the packaging, please read my original review.

Giddy is a light-medium pink with yellow undertones and a satiny sheen. For such a light shade, it has surprisingly good color payoff without being powdery or chalky. It’s similar to Inglot #356, which is a degree lighter. MAC Pen ‘n’ Pink compares well, too, but has more of a matte finish.

Do Not Disturb is a charcoal gray with a soft, frosted finish. It’s a little drier than a lot of the other bareMinerals eyeshadows though it still has good pigmentation. It is similar to several other grays, like theBalm Inspirational and Urban Decay Gunmetal.

The Glossover

palette

bareMinerals Honeymoon Phase Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

A-
Pink and gray is an elegant and feminine combination of colors, and neither shade runs cool-toned, which is interesting. It's more neutral than warm, though the pink does have yellow undertones but they are subtle.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Thursday, September 22nd, 2011

bareMinerals The Escape Eyeshadow Duo
bareMinerals The Escape Eyeshadow Duo

bareMinerals The Escape Eyeshadow Duo

Debuting at the beginning of October, bareMinerals The Escape Eyeshadow Duo ($20.00 for 0.10 oz.) include Daydream and Wanderlust. The new pressed eyeshadow formula has a SeaNutritive Mineral Complex that gives the shadow a “creamy, silky smooth” texture with “seamless blendability” and “stay-true color.” It’s supposed to be long-wearing whether worn alone or with primer–you shouldn’t see any creasing or fading. I’ve tested various combinations of shades from the duos and quads, and I’ve happily achieved ten hours of solid wear without a primer underneath. For a review of the packaging, please read my original review.

Daydream is a light-medium beige with satiny sheen. The payoff is amazing, and it has a lovely dense and buttery texture that’s soft and silky smooth. MAC Brule is similar but less pigmented.

Wanderlust is a grayish gray-tinted brown–taupe–with a soft, frosted finish. It applied smoothly and evenly while delivering excellent pigmentation. It’s a shimmery version of bareMinerals Apropos. MAC Satin Taupe is similar but has a much redder base.

This is one of my favorite duos, because it’s so wearable and easy to use. It’s light and dark neutrals, which can give you brightened but smoldering eyes in thirty seconds flat. I keep this stashed next to a few of my go-to Hourglass’ duos, as it’s flattering and a total no-brainer when I’m in a rush!

The Glossover

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bareMinerals Escape Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

A
This is a perfect duo for traveling or storing in your makeup bag, because it can give you a quick and easy neutral eye (or go heavy on the darker brown for something smokier)--plus it has a mirror and sponge-tipped applicator.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Thursday, September 22nd, 2011


A Look at China Glaze Halloween 2011

Want a SPOOKTACULAR manicure? I couldn’t resist. :) I just had the chance to play with the Halloween kit, which contains one real color shade, two layering coats, and China Glaze’s Fast Forward Top Coat. I bought the other new color shades but am waiting for them to arrive still (boo, west coast!). The kit I have includes the top coat but there’s one available at Sally’s ($12.99) that also includes Cross Iron 360 instead of the top coat.

It’s Alive is a blackened-olive green base with murky olive green micro-glitter and larger particle glitter. I like how the base color looks like a pool of murkiness–I think the play of really light color compared to the base creates that effect. I only needed two coats for opaque color, and the formula was easy to work with; not too thick or thin, good flow, and coverage.  It is rather different from Zombie Zest, actually–darker and glittery.

Ghoulish Glow is a glow-in-the-dark top coat, which does really glow when the lights are all off. I didn’t like it much layered over It’s Alive; it gave It’s Alive a muted, washed-out quality and when I turned off the lights, it didn’t look significantly different than if I had just painted my nails with the top coat itself. I’d say if you want a day and night look, it’s not a bad compromise to layer, because when it’s worn alone, it’s not exactly the prettiest shade (an off-white). I had good results with both one and two coats of it (alone), but, as my boyfriend pointed out, it glows better if you let it soak up some light first.

Black Mesh is old news, but it’s a black crackling top coat. It crackled in large chunks and pieces when I did it over It’s Alive. I don’t feel like there is much to say on it; it crackled and dried quickly to a matte finish (so use a top coat for shine). It does have a cool effect over Ghoulish Glow, but I’d recommend doing two coats of Ghoulish Glow underneath and then layering Black Mesh on top.

It’s a fun set! I really liked It’s Alive’s formula and am happy to be able to report back on Ghoulish Glow… actually glowing. I attempted photos of it, but let’s just not revisit that–it was an exercise in futility and “this is so not worth it” amongst many expletives.

The Glossover

LE
coming-soon

It's Alive

A
Don't you want a BOO-tiful manicure for Halloween? What, no room for Halloween puns? The formula of It's Alive is amazing--one of the best China Glazes I've used, and I love their formula already--and Ghoulish Glow actually glows-in-the-dark!

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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