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Urban Decay Holiday 2011 Nail Kit

Urban Decay Holiday 2011 Nail Kit: Mars, Gunmetal, Hot Mess, Ziggy, Wrecked, Barlust

Urban Decay Holiday 2011 Nail Kit

Urban Decay Holiday 2011 Nail Kit ($28.00 for 6 x 0.17 fl oz.) is a set that features six miniature-sized bottles of polish with colors designed with the season in mind. Urban Decay’s formula is free from toluene, formaldehyde, and DBP. The applicator brush is still full-sized, even if the rest of the packaging is not. The six shades included are: Mars (emerald green with green and silver micro-glitter), Gunmetal (shimmery dark grey), Hot Mess (bright fuchsia with fuchsia micro-glitter), Ziggy (gold and multi-colored glitter), Wrecked (deep red wine), and Barlust (whiskey brown with brown shimmer).  It is a limited edition set that will only be available at select Macy’s in-store and online at urbandecay.com around October.

  • Mars is a greenish teal with teal shimmer and silver micro-glitter. It was opaque in two coats. It reminded me of Illamasqua Viridian, which has a blacker base and no chunky shimmer. Other shades I considered ended up looking too green in comparison (like MAC Jade Dragon, Duri Paparazzi).
  • Gunmetal is taupe brown with silvery micro-shimmer strewn through the creamier base color. I used two coats for opaque color. I have no idea why this is described as a dark gray, because it’s barely gray on me at all. It does not resemble the Gunmetal eyeshadow shade at all (which is a dark gray with silver shimmer). I couldn’t think of a good dupe, though – I thought maybe China Glaze Ingrid, but it’s lighter and browner.
  • Hot Mess is a fuchsia-red with fuchsia micro-glitter. The formula on this was really nice and very pigmented. It looks like there is gold shimmer in the bottle, and there seems to be the tiniest reflectio of it if you angle your nails just right. I used two coats for opaque coverage. It’s pinker compared to China Glaze Ahoy! and Nubar Prize. Zoya Gilda is pinker with less red.
  • Ziggy is multi-colored glitter suspended in a clear base–it’s dominated by gold, blue, and pink. It’s actually rather opaque; I did swatches with just two coats, and it was nearly opaque. I blanked when trying to think of a dupe; I was reminded of Deborah Lippmann’s Happy Birthday, but they’re nothing alike.
  • Wrecked is a deep, dark brown-red with cream finish. It’s nearly opaque in two coats, but the formula was a touch on the thin side. This is the most dupeable shade of the six to me, as all of these shades are similar: Zoya Anja, MAC Purple Majesty, Rescue Beauty Lounge Drifter, and MAC Vintage Vamp.
  • Barlust is a dark brown with bronze and green-teal shimmer threaded through the shade. I used two coats for opaque color coverage. China Glaze Goin’ My Way was the closest I could think of, but it’s a warmer brown–more bronze in it.

The kit contains the equivalent of two full-sized polishes (the average polish is about 0.50 fl. oz.), and if Urban Decay sold individual, full-sized polishes (they don’t!), it probably breaks even or you come out a couple bucks ahead. Personally, I love mini nail kits; it’s rare that I fall so head-over-heels for a color that I’ll wear it for months on end, so more bottles for less money total works out for me. It is, though, a bummer if you do fall in love and aren’t able to buy a full-size of it.  Urban Decay actually mentions breaking up the set and giving out individual polishes to friends/family as stocking stuffers, and I actually love that idea.  How cute is it to receive a baby bottle of polish?

I have long fingers (must be from all that piano playing as a kid), so I’m often clumsy with really small bottles, but it’s not too awkward to hold and polish nails. The brush worked fine and did its job without murmur. In reality, a lot of higher end polishes have removable caps such that you’re actually polishing with something about the size of the full cap on this polish (think Chanel, Dior, etc. where the outer cap is large, but the one attached to the brush itself is significantly smaller).

As these just arrived in yesterday’s mail, obviously I can’t report on the wear of these specific shades. I have, however, tried various Urban Decay polishes since they started putting out the kits, and I have no issues with wear. I get around a week of wear with the expected tip wear (hey, I type all day and really have no regard for maintaining a chip-free manicure; I will totally pry something open with my nails) but no chipping.

Urban Decay Holiday 2011 Nail Kit


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Urban Decay Summer of Love Nail Kit

Urban Decay Summer of Love Nail Kit

Summer of Nails with Urban Decay

Urban Decay Summer of Love Nail Kit ($28.00) includes seven miniature-sized bottles of nail polish in summery shades. Each bottle contains 5ml/0.17 fl. oz. of product in it.

  • Shine On is a brightened bronze with gilded bronze shimmer. You can see a few brush strokes in this one, but they’re not too bad. I found the formula on this one to be a little goop-y but watery. You can’t rush this one — you have to let it dry quite a bit between coats. I found three were necessary for overall smoothness and color.
  • Woodstock is a bright neon pink. Like most neons, it’ll dry on the matte side, but a shiny top coat like Seche Vite will give it a glossy look. This went opaque in two coats, and it was a fuss-free formula.
  • Love Light is a sheer champagne shimmer. Even with three coats, you’ll still see the nail beneath it, but there’s plenty of shimmer here. The formula is sheer but easy to work with.
  • Hashbury is a magenta-fuchsia purple. It has a lot of red in it, and in the light, it looks much lighter than it does in the dark (where it looks more like an eggplant-y purple). Compared to the other two shimmery/metallic shades like Shine On and Aquarius, this one was easy to use and was just a bit on the runny side but not difficult to work with.
  • Magic Bus is a darkened neon orange. It’s like construction cone orange to me. Like Woodstock, it has a very smooth, easy to use formula that applies opaque in two coats.
  • Aquarius is a metallic-y aqua blue with teal sheen/shimmer. This one is both a pain to photograph and apply. It applies sheerly, so you need at least three coats for an opaque look. The problem with the formula is that it’s both goop-y and watery — it’s difficult to get enough for a thin coat, because if you do a medium-thick or thick coat, you’ll end up with goop-y looking nails (see my index finger in the swatch) that looks terrible. This was the problem child of the bunch for sure. Like Shine On, make sure you give each coat time to dry.
  • Psychedelic Sister is a neon coral-red. Again, like the other two neons (Woodstock and Magic Bus) in this kit, Psychedelic Sister applies smoothly and evenly without any work.

Three of the seven shades have an excellent formula–Woodstock, Magic Bus, and Psychedelic Sister–while three aren’t so hot–Shine On, Hashbury, and Aquarius. Love Light was neither excellent nor problematic; it just was, you know? Shine On and Hashbury weren’t too bad, but the formulas had a bit of a goop-y yet watery feel to them. Aquarius had this issue, but it also showed brush strokes the most and required nearly four coats to look right. With my larger hands, I found the tiny bottles harder to work with (I felt like I had meathooks!), but I was able to get used to that pretty quickly so it wasn’t a huge issue.

I like that it comes in a cute little bag that you can reuse later on for whatever makeup essentials you might want to put in it. It’ll fit your 24/7 Eyeliners, a few eyeshadows, glosses, and a blush. It’s not huge, but it has enough space for an overnight adventure.

If it was just the neons, these would be an A! Unfortunately, the metallic shades are harder to work with, and between Shine On and Aquarius, they have more of a low-B/mid-C formula, respectively, to me.  The kit, in total, is thus somewhere in between–just to clarify how everything came together.  I didn’t feel that comfortable rating it as a whole, just because some were great, some weren’t so great!

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

  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: If you love trying lots of shades at once, this nail kit is a great way to grab some metallics and neons without breaking the bank. If you don’t mind a little patience, the metallics are workable, while the neons apply like a dream.

Availability: UrbanDecay.com on March 30th