Sunday, February 28, 2010

MAC Viva Glam Gaga comparision + Show Orchid & Cyber swatches

I admittedly love Lady Gaga, I also love pink lipsticks, so I had to pick up Viva Glam Gaga. Here is a comparison and swatch. When I picked it up at the counter I thought it would be too similar to Saint Germain but I'm glad to say it isn't. It is more sheer and wearable. This may actually be the first lipstick I grab a backup tube for.Isn't the tube cute? I love the Viva Glam packaging.
Left to right: Saint Germain, Viva Glam Gaga, Snob
Left to right: Saint Germain, Viva Glam Gaga, Snob
As you can see it isn't an exact match for either, it has a more sheer coverage and is more of a true pink.
Viva Glam Gaga swatched. This is applied pretty heavy and you can wear it lighter for a perfect sheer pink.
Show Orchid swatched- very pretty bright pink! I wanted to compare it to Girl About Town but I couldn't find my tube.
Cyber swatched. This is meant to be dark purple but seems a little brown toned to me? This is over lip balm because the tube I have is extremely dry.
Saturday, February 27, 2010

Fail manicure: halfmoon manicure

I don't know if it was the french tip decals not being round enough or my nails aren't shaped right but this does not please me. The base french color I put down for the halfmoon got peeled off by the french tip decals, this always happens and it is why I never use them! Does anyone else have this problem? I also did this right after removing the yellow polish from the last post and did a really crappy job, excuse all the yellow around the edges- I didn't realize it was there until I saw these pictures! Nail color is Zoya Casey- 3 coats and it is really vampy red! I love it.

Claire's Yellow Brick Road

Just a quick post- I need to upload and crop photos and I'm lazy! This is Claire's Yellow Brick Road which was the biggest pain the butt to apply and I hated it so much on me that I removed it. I even added glitter to it in an attempt to like it better (Sally Hansen In the Spotlight). In the bottle this looked so pretty, yellow mustard yellow with silver flecks. Something about the application just made it horrible, thus the mess (which, please excuse, I wasn't going to clean this up if I was going to remove it).

I keep trying yellow but it never seems to work for me :(
Sunday, February 21, 2010

3 fake nail designs

A friend of mine wears press-on nails and I get to decorate them :) Here are three sets that I have done:
Chameleon polish in Calypso (I found this at Rite Aid) stamped with Wet n Wild Black Creme on the thumbs and ring fingers. 3 coats, no top coat. This is beautiful glowy foil goodness!
2 coats of China Glaze Bermuda Breakaway with stars stamped in pointer fingers with Wet n Wild French White and Sally Hansen In The Spotlight on pinky and middles. This was hard to photograph- 2 coats of Fingerpaints in Easel Come, Easel Go! and 2 coats of Sinful All About You. These photos do not give the glitter and color combination credit!

Sinful San Francisco Konad'ed with China Glaze Millenium

Sinful San Francisco is a pretty popular polish. I never picked it up until a little while ago and I have to say it is pretty...but not uncommon. I will have to swatch and compare but I think I have a dupe to it in my collection.

This is three coats + Essie Matte About You + Konad (must look up plate...) done with China Glaze Millenium. And I will say again how FANTASTIC the China Glaze metallics are for Konad. I will be picking the rest of them up for this reason alone :)
With flash

In direct sunlight
Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Lime Crime lipstick review- Cosmopop and D' Lilac

This is something a little different. I wrote this review a couple months back for a community on Livejournal but I figured others might be interested in reading since there aren't many reviews on this company.

If you aren't familiar with the brand, Lime Crime was started by blogger Doe Deere aka Xenia sometime in the last couple of years. There has been a lot of controversy with her in general and with her company. I'm not going to go into much further details here (a simple google search will turn up a lot) but because I mention it- there are a lot of claims that she repackages loose eye shadow straight from the package and charges a ridiculous price for a minuscule amount. She also likes to threaten bloggers to take down reviews on her products.

Now I will start by saying I really don't like Xenia, I can't believe I parted with my money for her product. However, I've yet to see a review that didn't seem out to dislike these from the start so I'm going to try and forget where these came from for the most part. I'm going to compare these to MAC a bit because there they are probably the best known all around.

Shipping:
I ordered from Lime Crime Tuesday night and it was waiting for me Friday morning. Shipping was actually a flat $5 which is nice when it's usually so jacked up. The previous review I had read (which I cannot locate ATM- let me know if it was yours) stated the package came with the lipsticks bouncing around. Since then they seem to have added some festive star tissue paper. Basic cardboard box packaging. Some small companies will personalize your order form with a little thank you but since I'm sure she herself never touched any of the process I wasn't expecting even a forged thank you. Not a big deal at all.

Packaging and appearance:

If you haven't seen it, think bright pink and sparkling unicorns. Seeing it in person I still can't decide if I like it or it's the gaudiest thing ever. Personally I don't give a crap if my lipstick tube is classy or not. The tube is the same shape but a little bigger than a MAC lipstick. I must say the packaging is a plus compared to most small makeup companies who don't put any effort into packaging (can't say I blame them, must be expensive).

Obviously the lipstick formula is not original, it is made by a lab and we all know Xenia isn't in there mixing chemicals (which she likes to pretend she is). I don't see how this is a con to the product as lipstick is a pretty standard formula. From what I understood what was meant to be original here was not the formula but the colors and coverage. It smells similar to MAC and a lot of other lipsticks- light vanilla scent. She probably did use the same scent note on purpose but really what should it smell like otherwise? Roses? Crayon? Chicken? I can't think of any other lipstick that smelled good and wasn't vanilla. But I may also be partial to vanilla myself.

Application and wear:
Her advertising says tube to lips color in one stroke so I tested this. It actually covers pretty well in one coat and I have pretty pigmented lips. But who applies lipstick in a single stroke? That slogan is kinda stupid. Maybe I just have annoying lips. They can still be easily blotted down to a lighter coverage. Do I think these are any more pigmented and cover better than any other brand? No.

From everything I had read I expected these to be thick and difficult to apply like a cheap halloween lipstick, something I wanted off my lips immediately. The texture going on feels a lot like MAC amplified cream lipsticks (a little thick but not unpleasant, pretty well textured and good coverage). I'd read complaints that it is drying but I've been wearing it for a few hours and I've yet to feel uncomfortable or dry and the wear is pretty decent. The color doesn't feel like it's slip-sliding all over the place, application doesn't seem very streaky and is rather even for the amount of coverage. It wears decently and just as well as my MAC lipstick. The only wear issue I had with these was one I have with all lipstick- it pulls away from the middle of my lip (I don't know if this is just me being a freak or what). Do they cover as well and thick as the swatches show? No.

Example of coverage in one stroke:


The colors:
Obviously the swatches on the site are photoshopped. Most of them are the same pair of lips- of course it is. I truthfully never expect swatches to look like they do on the site. I have been extremely disappointed by swatches from every company I've ever ordered from. Neither swatch is accurate but neither is extremely far off either.

Her description of Cosmopop: Buttery, softened orange. Think creamsicle, yum
My description of Cosmopop: Softened orange. Think easy-mac powdered cheese, yum.

Swatch on lips with actual website swatch for comparison:


You can see how very different her swatch and the true color are. I was hoping this would be more like the swatch and am a little disappointed. But it is a softer orange then I have been able to find so I'm not totally. Nothing really remarkable to say otherwise about it.

Swatches below of closest colors I own: Rimmel Celeb, Lime Crime Cosmopop, MAC M'Orange


Here is a photo of me in all my bad makeup and duck lips glory wearing Cosmopop.


Her description of D' Lilac: Boutique crème de lavender dessert in a tube. For post-modern Marie Antoinettes only! (whatever that means)
My description of D' Lilac: Light lavender cream, pure and simple.



I don't have any other lipsticks to swatch against this but I had previously owned MACs Lavender Whip (which when I was searching for a lavender lipstick would always be recommended) and it was much more pink toned than purple- so close to MAC Snob that I swapped it away.

Here is a full face shot so you can see how odd this looks even in my tastes. Probably doesn't help my sweater matches but whatever:


I thought this would really wash me out or make me look yellow seeing as how pale I am but it didn't. It did not however flatter my not-hollywood-perfect teeth by making them appear ridiculously yellow.

In conclusion TL, DR:
I'm surprised to say I am not disappointed. These provide decent coverage, wear well and while they are nothing spectacular they aren't bad and are better than a lot. I wouldn't order from her if I was looking for a common color (which most of them are) but if unique colors are your thing they are pretty decent. I don't really approve of the $16 price tag and I think if she docked them a couple bucks people would be more likely to order. Will I order again? Possibly. Do I still dislike Xenia? Yeah, I do.

If I didn't answer anything you were curious feel free to ask. I can't say I'm very good at reviews :P

Another Zoya sale!

Order $10 and up on artofbeauty.com and get any 2 Zoya polishes (your choice!) as a free gift with the code NYFW! Valid until 2/19 at 5PM

I'm on the fence about ordering, I just did on the last deal. The problem I have is there seems to be a lack of Zoya swatches floating around and most of what I've seen isn't worth ordering or I have it. Anyone have a Zoya polish that hold a special place in your collection? Unique colors?

I will rec to anyone interested:
Casey-gorgeous vampy dark red.
Sienna- that gorgeous orange I just swatched a few posts ago.
Paz- NEON traffic cone orange! I have some other neons but nothing like this one :)
Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Claire's Chunky Purple + hitting 50 followers!

Woo! I've hit 50 followers (52 actually)! Thank you everyone who follows :) You are all lovely, and thank you for all the wonderful comments! For hitting 50 I added a new banner so I can scratch that off the blog-to-do list. Next up is forming a blog roll finally.

If I can hit 100 followers I am planning a lovely giveaway!

I just have to say winter is finally catching up on my hands- my cuticles are a disaster and I started noticing it in pictures. What is your favorite cuticle cream/oil? I picked up China Glaze orange cuticle oil but I'm not really liking it (although it smells good) the application is really messy and it doesn't seem to help at all.

Here are some swatches of Claire's Chunky Purple. What a gross color name. Who wants to wear something CHUNKY on their nails? And really, it is more pink than purple. But they are right- it IS chunky. It is dark pink with chunky silver glitter and fine pink glitter mixed in a kinda sheer jelly pink base. This was 3 coats (plus top coat) and the application was kind of a pain in the butt. I think I just kinda hate the color of it though. I also picked up Chunky Blue and Chunky Gold (which was on clearance and gorgeous) so I will have swatches of those coming soon enough. Chunky Purple did some chipping the very next day so they don't wear very well but they are fun anyhow.


And with a coat of Essie Matte About You....

OPI Mad as a Hatter pic spam!

I know I'm late to the party but I finally got my hands on Mad as a Hatter and I'm in love with it. It is described as being black glitter in a clear base but I would say it is purple not black. The rest is multi-colored. There is so much going on I can't even tell you but I know there is green, silver and gold in there. It is like New Year's and Mardi Gras (something about the color combo just screams Mardi Gras to me) in a bottle and I love it. I just sat there and stared at my nails all night long :) Sadly I did some heavy cleaning the next day and ruined this mani but I think it will be going on my toesies later tonight!

Here are some swatches/pic spam. 3 coats with a coat of Seche Vite over the top.

These all get way bigger so you can see the delicious glitter!


Sunday, February 14, 2010

My Valentine nails- Peachy Keen franken & konad

I rarely create franken polish but this is one of those cases. When I bought Peachy Keen from China Glaze's Up & Away collection I expected a milkier peach than what I got. I still like Peachy Keen but I decided to make myself that creamy light peach I was searching for and couldn't find. Despite being married, I'm not big on Valentine's so no hearts from me, just something pretty and feminine.
What I used for this franken: about 1/2 bottle of Wet N Wild French White, about 1/4 bottle of China Glaze Peachy Keen and a splash of Zoya Sweet to give it a little extra pink tone. Didn't quite make a full bottle but pretty close and I've really happy with the results.

Remember you can always click the photos to see them bigger :) Stamped with Konad m56 plate using China Glaze 2030. I have to say that this was one of the easiest Konad manis I have ever done. Something about the metallics are just great for it!





Any suggestions on a name for this franken? I suck at naming them :P

Happy Valentine's Day everyone!
Saturday, February 13, 2010

Zoya Sienna

Click these babies bigger!

Zoya Sienna is a semi-sheer bright and true orange with golden flakes. Reminds me of both summer and even more so goldfish. This is one of those colors I just kept looking at in the light- beautiful! I know I don't have anything close to it in my collection. At 3 coats it is still kinda sheer. I didn't attempt a 4th but something tells me it wouldn't have made much of a difference. This is one of those colors I don't mind being a little sheer though, it doesn't effect the color payoff.

Excuse the kitty fur on my hand. I have a fluffy black baby and his fur gets EVERYWHERE. There is no escape!
Friday, February 12, 2010

Zoya Zara

Zoya Zara is a medium purple leaning towards mauve with gold shimmer in it. This was gorgeous in the bottle but on my nails I thought it was kinda meh. It looked lighter in the bottle, I'm personally not very happy with the outcome of it :/ Still, makes for pretty swatches though! This is 3 coats.
Monday, February 8, 2010

China Glaze Light As Air + Lemon Fizz from Up & Away


I really like this manicure but totally wrecked it doing my friends nails before I got more pictures :P Oh well! 2 coats of Light As Air. I was shocked how well it applied, not streaky at all. I expected at least a 3-coater for this. Lemon fizz is only a coat, could have used an extra coat but what can I say, I'm lazy.

And if anyone is looking for another awesome nail blog to follow check out Perrypie's nail polish adventures!
Sunday, February 7, 2010

N.Y.C.- Chinatown

How did I miss this color for so long? Chinatown is such a gorgeous shimmery dark blue. Something about the shimmer in it I just love. There is nothing else similar to it in my collection but I just can't put my finger on what makes it stand out.

This is 2 coats, went on nice and easy except for being a little bit runny. Wore fantastic, little tip wear but nothing dramatic before removing. Typical NYC brush, could use a nicer one but nothing horrible. I can't wait to wear this again.

I recommend clicking these bigger to see the gorgeous shimmer! Excuse the mess, these were taken before clean up :)


Look at that fantastic shimmer!
Friday, February 5, 2010

Wet n Wild- Jade




I suggest clicking the last one bigger! Three coats, pretty light olive green with golden shimmer. Application on this was surprisingly nice, not streaky at all. Brush was nice for Wet n Wild- not stiff but nice and flexible and not splayed all over. I was expecting this one to stain when I removed it but it didn't at all! Wear on it wasn't great but I wasn't expecting it to be.

Now, this is from that "craze" line of Wet n Wild with the pretty little bottles with the nice design on the handle. And I don't plan to buy another. This brush is sooo short and tiny. The handle is fat, big and clumbsy. When I paint my nails I usually hold the bottle between my fingers so I can dip back in easy. With this bottle I cannot do this without ripping a chunk out of my already painted nails. Even not holding the bottle the large size of the handle is annoying. Even the little tiny mini polishes from Sally's are easier to use than this. Here are some comparisons of the brushes and handles.

Wet N Wild Craze, Pure Ice, Sally Hansen, China Glaze, OPI
Wet N Wild Craze, Pure Ice, Sally Hansen, China Glaze, OPI

"Night Sky" nails

I think this kinda failed hard but I figure I'd post them anyways :)

I've been playing too much Mass Effect 2 and was inspired.



Base- 2 coats of NYC Chinatown
Glitter- Holographic nail art polish
Yellow- sponged on China Glaze Lemon Fizz
"Planets"- Ti Tan Your Toga by OPI, white nail art polish for ring
Glitter top coat- Pure Ice Don't You Wish

China Glaze High Hopes from Up & Away


This color is kinda meh to me. From the swatches I was expecting it to be less red. In the bottle it looks like it leans a little more towards pink but on the nails it is very red. Application was nice, a simple 2 coater. You can still see the nail line through but I think another coat would have covered it. No chips before removing but I honestly didn't wear this long. Probably going to swap this one out!

After applying it I realized I had a couple colors that were basically the same so here are some comparisons.OPI Most Honorable Red, China Glaze High Hopes, Avon Coral Bikini

OPI Most Honorable Red, China Glaze High Hopes, Avon Coral Bikini- 2 coats each

As you can see these are almost exactly the same, maybe a shade off either way. OPI and CG even had the same coverage.

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Dainty Darling Digits
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