ZOYA Pixie Dust Special Texture Edition Collection Review, Photos, Swatches


Texture is the new big thing in nail polish, and ZOYA brings us their take on this trend with the Pixie Dust Collection. This special edition collection is comprised of six shades; all of which sparkle beautifully, dry matte, and have a textured look and feel. With Pixie Dust, you’ll want to use base coat, but you’ll skip top coat. The use of top coat will eliminate the special textured effect. (ZOYA actually recommends skipping base coat too, but I didn’t find that the use of one hurt the final look. I’d personally still wear it.)

When I first spied this trend, I wasn’t entirely sold on it—and you’ll see it from several brands this season. But as usual, ZOYA sealed the deal for me, because I think theirs turned out beautifully. I love the sugary, sparkling look!

Zoya Pixie Dust Special Texture Edition

In terms of application, these are actually pretty easily. The flow of the polish is consistent and even, and it takes about 10 minutes for the product to dry to a completely matte-textured finish. You’ll want to allow each coat to dry before applying the next. (For example, wait five minutes before applying coat two, then wait five more minutes to dry.)

The shade will actually determine how many coats to apply. I used two coats in all of the swatches below, but in hindsight, I wish I had used three on a few of the pale shades. While you can feel the textured bumps with these on the nail surface, I find that the ZOYA Pixie Dust formula is smoother than the OPI Liquid Sand finish, and that the effect is much more dynamic. Actual length of wear is still questionable for me with these since I haven’t had them long enough for a proper wear test, but I’m hearing around the blogosphere that the wear is still pretty decent, considering you’re not using a top coat. [Read more…]

OPI ‘Oz The Great and Powerful’ Collection Review, Photos, Swatches


In an exciting new collaboration with Disney, this time OPI channels the upcoming film, Oz The Great and Powerful with a limited edition 7-shade collection. This collection is a little bit of a mix of textures and finishes; with three SoftShades, three glitters, and one with the new Liquid Sand textured finish. With the exception of the Liquid Sand shade, I think this collection is best for layering—but I have to say I think the SoftShades stand strong on their own.

 “OPI is very excited to take this fantastical journey with Disney,” explains Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, OPI Executive VP & Artistic Director.  “Inspired by the magic of Oz The Great and Powerful, this SoftShades collection captures the whimsy seen in the film, from glittery shades packed with white, gold and silvery iridescent confetti – Lights of Emerald City, When Monkeys Fly! and Which is Witch? – to soft neutrals in white, beige and pink – Don’t Burst My Bubble, Glints of Glinda and I Theodora You.

“The new Liquid Sand nail lacquer – What Wizardry is This? – features OPI’s groundbreaking technology for a textured, matte finish infused with reflective sparkle,” adds Weiss-Fischmann.  “This rich taupe hue was designed for James Franco’s character, the great Wizard of Oz, and is sure to make a bold statement this spring.”

Soft Shades — Don’t Burst My Bubble, I Theodora You, Glints of Glinda [Read more…]

My Favorites: MAC Archie’s Girls Collection “Betty”


I am so sorry, and I realize this is a little after-the-fact, but my MAC Archie’s Girls samples arrived after most of the products were sold out on the MAC site. This collection is so comprehensive, that it really took me some extra time to go through and pick my favorites for both the Betty and Veronica portions. Just because some of it is sold out online, doesn’t mean you won’t find it at a counter! So I feel this info is still relevant and wanted to make sure you didn’t miss the pieces I really loved.

I’ve decided to break Archie’s Girls up into two posts; this one—my “Betty” favorites, and in an upcoming post, my “Veronica” favorites. (UPDATE: Veronica is featured here.) These “favorites” aren’t super-comprehensive reviews, but please consider them more as “highlights”. I hope you see some pieces you like, and that you’re able to make them your own!

MAC Flatter Me Pearlmatte Face Powder & Betty Bright Lipstick

What spoke to me most about the Betty products, was the sheer femininity and everyday wear-ability of the pieces. Nothing here is too over-the-top, and they all sing spring to me. I’m so ready for fresh, pretty, girlie color! I know a lot of you in the Midwest and on the East coast are over the cold already too, and want to break out your sandals and short sleeves. I feel like Betty gives us that glimmer of hope that it’s coming soon! [Read more…]

OPI Euro Centrale Collection Review, Swatches, Photos for Spring/Summer 2013


opi euro centrale collection

I’ve been pretty excited about this release from OPI for Spring/Summer 2013—the Euro Centrale Collection! It features a mix of both classic and contemporary shades, in bright playful hues, to creamy dark shades. From the palest shades, to the deepest blues, Euro Centrale will be the easiest fashion accessory you can wear this spring.

Ready to take a closer look at some of the shades that have stolen my heart? Let’s go! [Read more…]

China Glaze Glitz—Bitz ’N Pieces Collection Review, Photos, Swatches


Launching in February from China Glaze, you’ll find a new, limited-edition collection of six unique glitter nail lacquers, the Glitz—Bitz ‘N Pieces Collection. This is a new generation of three-dimensional glitters, in which a combination of black glitter particles (micro-glitter, small round, hexagonal, and bar glitter) meet with a single highlight color of glitters in each shade. Let’s take a closer look…

In the bottle, looks can be deceiving, as they look pretty much like any other glitter with a transparent base. But once you apply them, the effect is pretty cool—almost like a paint-splat manicure, but with 3D glitter, instead. Most of the time (and with glitters that have larger particles or bar glitter), you have to not only coax the glitter out of the bottle, but then onto your nails too—practically getting into a fight with the brush as you try to lay the polish down on the nail. I’m happy to report that with Glitz—Bitz ’N Pieces, I didn’t have that issue. The glitter came out decently in one coat, but did look best with two.  [Read more…]

essie Sleek Stick Review, Photos, Swatches


essie enters the nail wrap arena with their first-ever textured sticker collection. While I love to paint my nails (I find it really relaxing!), I also like the time-saving convenience of polish strips. They’re great for a quick manicure on the fly, and are a lifesaver for those who like nail art, but don’t want to pay hefty salon prices for more comprehensive designs. essie is taking the polish strip a little further, by adding three-dimensional textures and lavish patterns to their collection of new Sleek Sticks.

Essie Sleek Stick in Stickers and Stones

Available in 12 patterns, each strip is UV-cured, allowing the colors and textures to stay looking fresh for as many as 10 days. I’m on my second run of Sleek Sticks, at first trying the pretty peach-pearled “Glam it On”, and yesterday, I applied my favorite—“Stickers and Stones”. Application is pretty simple, too. What’s cool about these, is that the “art” seems like it’s professionally hand-applied. Everywhere I’ve gone in the past 24 hours, there hasn’t been at least one person commenting on how pretty my nails look. Prepare for your hands to receive positive attention!  [Read more…]

Review & Swatches: Urban Decay NAKED Nail Kit


As part of Urban Decay’s early spring releases, you’ll find the NAKED Nail Kit at Sephora now. This set of six travel size (.16 oz each) nail polishes is part of their ever-expanding NAKED family; joining the collection of existing eyeshadow palettes, liquid foundation, cheek palette (to be reviewed soon!), and beauty balm. These beautiful neutral shades were inspired by their Facebook fan favorite eyeshadow shades from the original NAKED Palette, each one new and exclusive to this set! Let’s take a closer look…

Urban Decay NAKED Nail Kit

What’s inside:

  • Naked — opaque nude cream
  • Sidecar — sheer nude pink shimmer with silver micro-glitter
  • Toasted — pearlescent light mauve/champagne
  • Smog — metallic copper with gold shift
  • Hustle — metallic deep brown/eggplant
  • Creep — gunmetal shimmer with silver micro-glitter  [Read more…]

Review & Swatches: OPI Mariah Carey Collection


For January 2013, OPI introduces an 8-piece nail lacquer collection inspired by iconic Grammy Award-winning songstress, Mariah Carey. Mariah Carey by OPI also marks the introduction of a new polish finish for OPI—Liquid Sand.

Liquid Sand is a unique matte nail polish with a textured finish, infused with plenty of sparkle. I have a feeling this is just the start of mass-market availability of one-step textured polish finishes, so keep an eye out! Half of the Mariah Carey by OPI collection features the Liquid Sand finish (“Stage Shades”), while the remaining four shades (“Studio Shades”) feature traditional polish finishes—so don’t worry! If texture just isn’t your thing, there’s something else for you to choose from. Ready for a closer look?

 Mariah Carey by OPI

“OPI is extremely excited to work with Mariah,” says Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, OPI Executive VP & Artistic Director. “She’s very passionate about beauty and her nails in particular. Her music, which includes 18 Billboard No. 1 singles, served as a wonderful inspiration for glamorous, sultry, vibrant colors.

“To pay homage to her iconic status, we wanted to launch her collection with something completely new and exciting. OPI Liquid Sand nail lacquer offers a never-before-seen look with a pebbled finish that lightly shimmers with fine glitter particles. Worn without top coat, Liquid Sand lacquer gives nails a unique textured matte finish worthy of a superstar.”

See more photos, swatches, and details… [Read more…]

Review & Swatches: ZOYA Lovely Collection for Spring 2013


Isn’t it lovely?

This is one of the first signs that the holidays are nearly over and spring is on the way—pastel nail polish! ZOYA isn’t messing around, and they’re first out of the gate with the Lovely Collection for Spring 2013, which features designer shades for both the Peter Som and Zang Toi Spring/Summer 2013 New York Fashion Week shows. Let’s take a closer look!

zoya lovely collection 2

Zoya Lovely Collection

The collection features three cremes, and three metallics. The cremes immediately remind me of Jordan almonds, and the metallics make me think of Easter eggs! [Read more…]