Thursday, November 29, 2012

Colour by TBN Passion and Peri Winkle

I'm sick today and my nose is all blocked up... Perfect for swatching cheap, toxic-smelling polishes! Colour by TBN is a brand I've only seen in Terry White chemists. They're apparently made by the same brand that produces Designer Brands cosmetics, another "drugstore" brand (I use the quotation marks because they aren't called drugstores in Australia). They have a wide variety of colours available, and today I swatched two of them.

Passion is a purple with silver shimmery flecks. It's actually quite pretty and the formula is pretty good for a cheap polish. I didn't experience any gloopiness or dragging, and it's smooth and opaque in 3 coats. I used a top coat for this swatch.



Indoors, Natural Light

Peri Winkle is a pale greyish periwinkle colour. It started off with a watery jelly consistency, but evened out to be opaque in 3 coats. I do like that glossy, squishy look. I used a top coat for this swatch. Sorry about the sparkle on my index finger - some of the sparkle from Passion came off in the top coat and I accidentally applied it to this swatch. There is definitely no sparkle in Peri Winkle!


Indoors, Natural Light
These only cost about $2.50 each from Terry White chemist. They smell awful and probably have all sorts of toxic carcinogenic chemicals in them, but they're pretty good value and the colours are nice.
Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Emily de Molly It's Complicated

Emily de Molly It's Complicated is such an interesting and unique polish. It features a slightly grey white crelly base with black, silver, rich purple and holo glitters. I love the way that the glitter in the layers underneath peeks through and gives it a real sense of depth.

The formula was unexpectedly good. The glitters didn't need any careful placement, and the polish itself was easy to apply and self-leveling. This is one of those polishes to wear when you want a little bit of bling but don't want to wear a full on glitterbomb. My only complaint is that there aren't enough holo glitters, and that the holo doesn't show if they aren't on the top layer. But I do love the speckled egg look! This is 3 coats.

Emily de Molly polishes are available to Australian ladies from her etsy store, and international ladies can buy them from Llarowe and Shoppe Eclecticco.
Monday, November 26, 2012

Aussie Nails Monday - Weather - Sephora by OPI Spark-tacular!

Today's Aussie Nails Monday theme is Weather. I was thinking about doing a clouds nail art mani but I unfortunately ran out of time. So I decided to go with a polish that matches the current weather in Sydney. The weather is so ridiculously hot and sunny right now, so I went for an over-cheerful polish, Sephora by OPI Spark-tacular! Even the name exudes desperate enthusiasm.

Spark-tacular! is a bright multi-coloured glitter top coat. It is predominantly silver with multi-sized green, pink, yellow, orange and light blue glitters. It has really good glitter payoff, but some of the glitters needed a bit of placement. This is one coat over Eclipse 135 with one coat of Seche Vite.


Check out the manis of the other girls participating in Aussie Nails Monday:

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Eclipse Nail Polish 135 - Swatch and Review

On a recent shopping trip I remembered that there was a Morning Glory nearby, a Korean store that sells cute Asian stationary, toys and makeup. I haven't been to one since high school, but I thought I might drop by to see if they had any Tony Moly polishes. Unfortunately, they didn't have any in stock, but I found some Eclipse polishes instead at 3 for $15.

Eclipse is a Korean nail polish brand. The one I have to show you today is 135, a peachy orange with gold shimmer and small golden flakes. Although it's apparently 3 free, it smells absolutely toxic. It's surprisingly pigmented but a bit gloopy as well, so application works best in thin coats. This is 3 coats with no top coat.



Indoors, Natural Light

Indoors, Natural Light
Saturday, November 24, 2012

Illamasqua Poke

I broke my no-buy this morning. This is the first year that I've really taken notice of Black Friday sales. Obviously it's a huge thing in America, but not so much over here. But thanks to the wonders of the internet, people all over the world can participate in the same sales! Unfortunately most of those sales took place while I was asleep, but I awoke to find everything on Beauty Bay at 20% off, so I splurged on some Nail Inc polishes. Did anyone else nab any Black Friday bargains?

Today I am wearing my first (and only) Illamasqua polish, a rich red-toned purple with a milky silver shimmer called Poke. I was lucky enough to pick this one up cheap in a blog sale, because although Illamasqua have recently lowered their prices, they still retail for $26 a bottle!

I love that against the red toned shade of purple, the silver shimmer looks almost blue. It becomes perfectly opaque in 2 coats, but it does dry a little dull so I would definitely recommend a top coat.



Illamasqua polishes are available at Myer and directly from their website. In fact, right now they have 20% off their entire range... Go forth and splurge!
Friday, November 23, 2012

Butter London Two Fingered Salute

Butter London Two Fingered Salute is a gorgeous muted green with copper flecks. The copper leans towards rose, which lends it an elegant tone, rather than a yellow-toned blingy feel. The copper flecks are subtle enough to not be immediately noticeable, but make enough of a difference. Again, Butter London has nailed sophisticated colour with an interesting twist.

The formula is fantastic, and nothing less than expected. This is 2 easy coats.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Butter London Fishwife

Butter London Fishwife is a greyed out sage green holographic nail polish with turquoise undertones. This polish is exactly why I love BL - they create such on trend yet sophisticated colours. Out of direct light, it's work appropriate and the green hue makes it a bit more interesting than a plain grey. But when you get it into the sunlight it has a beautiful holographic glow. Not the most vibrant of holos, but still enough sparkle to keep me happy.

This is 3 coats that still showed a tiny bit of VNL. One thing that struck me about this polish is how quickly and incredibly shiny it dried.



This arrived in my order with Dodgy Barnett and Trustafarian, the other holo offerings from Butter London. They're all in the same sort of colour family so I hope to do a comparison post soon.

In Australia, Butter London retails for around $20 and is available from selected pharmacies. They are also often available on Ozsale and Brandsexclusive for around $14. Elsewhere in the world, Butter London can be purchased directly from their website.
Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Aussie Nails Monday - Glitter

I can't believe it's already been a week since I last posted! And I missed Monday so I'm just going to have to post this Aussie Nails Monday mani a day late... Oops! I didn't want to miss it completely though because this week's theme is Glitter, and I glitter is my absolute vice when it comes to nail polish. What can I say... I'm like a magpie, I love anything that sparkles!

I decided to create a glitter gradient mani using Essie Dive Bar as the base coat, and OPI Last Friday Night, BYS Diamond Glitter Aquamarine and a random old silver glitter I have in my stash. It didn't turn out as gradient-y as I'd hoped, but I still like the end result.

Thanks for reading! Here are the other girls participating in Aussie Nails Monday:

Monday, November 12, 2012

Aussie Nails Monday - Birthday Nails

Welcome to my very first Aussie Nails Monday post! Basically it's a weekly nail art challenge a couple of us Aussie girls are doing, with a different theme each week, organised by the lovely Elissa from Lissa's Polish Addiction. I've never done nail art before so this is the perfect opportunity for me to get into it :)

This week's theme is Birthday. When I think of birthdays, the first thing that comes to my mind is a Tiffany's box. Every year, my boyfriend gives me a gorgeous piece of Tiffany's jewellery on my birthday. His choices are always perfect, and I love every single piece.

Nah, just kidding. I don't own a single item of Tiffany's jewellery. But a girl can dream, right? I've been hinting heavily that I would like something from Tiffany's for my birthday, so I suppose my nails are still somewhat birthday related. As I said earlier, I've never done nail art before so I thought I'd start with something dead simple - a Tiffany's themed french manicure. The blue is Sportsgirl Lagoon, with Ulta3 Lily White tips.



Thanks for reading! Here are the other ladies participating in Aussie Nails Monday (with entries infinitely better than mine!)

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Emily de Molly Blue Moon + Essence Hard to Resist

I'm ashamed to say that I only recently made my first Emily de Molly order... Great Aussie indie polish supporter I am, right? But now that they've arrived, I'm totally hooked. I was lucky enough to be able to get my hands on a special polish called Blue Moon, made exclusively for the members of an Aussie nail polish addicts group.

As you may or may not know, Lynns are very difficult to come by in Australia, because she doesn't ship internationally from her ebay store. Hayley from Emily de Molly was kind enough to create an alternative to When the Moon was a Star for us, and dare I say... I actually like her version better. Blasphemy! Lynn dupe aside, this is actually a gorgeous polish. It has bright blue multi-sized hex glitters, small light blue and purple holo glitters, and holo moons and stars in a clear base. It applies smoothly and dries only slightly bumpy, and the moons and stars were easy to get on the nail. This is one coat over Essence Hard to Resist.

The blue of this was difficult to capture in photographs - it's actually a lighter, more saturated blue. Once I get my lightbox fixed and my good camera up and running, I'll update these photos.

The undies deserve a special mention. Essence Hard to Resist is the most gorgeous navy blue I've ever used. It's a one coater with a lit-from-within shimmer, and it only cost me a couple of dollars as well. If you see this in stores, buy it immediately. You won't regret it.

Emily de Molly polishes are available from her etsy store, and for international ladies they'll soon be available from Llarowe. Essence is available from Target and Priceline.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Pretty Serious They Came From Beyond Space! Collection

Yes I know... Another Pretty Serious collection! My wallet is crying. They Came From Beyond Space! is a mini collection of 3 sparkling multichromes which look different depending on how you layer them and in what lighting you look at them. They are such versatile chameleon colours!

With these 3 polishes, the colour is much softer and smoother when worn on its own. It also has more depth to its shimmer. However, when layered over black, the colours really pop and the sparkle is much stronger. They all applied fairly sheer and needed 3 coats for full opacity on their own, but over black only one thick coat (or two thin coats) is needed. The formulas are all really smooth and easy to apply with barely any patchiness or streaking. They have an almost foil-like finish.

Anyway, enough of my talking - I will let the pictures speak for themselves.

Galaxy Invader is an aqua with a light purple shift.

3 coats on its own

3 coats on its own

Index & Middle: 2 thin coats over black, Ring & Pinky: 1 thick coat over black

Index & Middle: 2 thin coats over black, Ring & Pinky: 1 thick coat over black
Phantom Planet is a muted mossy green with a blue shift.

3 coats on its own

3 coats on its own

1 thick coat over black

1 thick coat over black
 I love all of these, but I think Atomic Brain is my favourite. It's a purple-pink with a golden coppery shift.

3 coats on its own

3 coats on its own

1 thick coat over black

1 thick coat over black
The They Came From Beyond Space! collection is available from the Pretty Serious website for $9.95 a bottle, or 10% off for the full set.

Thanks for reading!
Friday, November 9, 2012

Sneak Peek: Pretty Serious Galaxy Invader

I feel a bit guilty about neglecting to post for a couple of days so here is a sneak peek for an upcoming post: my review and swatches of the Pretty Serious They Came From Beyond Space collection. This one is Galaxy Invader, an aqua with a pretty purple duochrome shift. I wore this to my graduation dinner on Wednesday night and got many compliments on it.

Stay tuned for a full review coming soon!
Tuesday, November 6, 2012

HITS Apolo Swatches

HITS Apolo is the polish I chose to wear for my trip up to the Gold Coast a few weeks ago. What could be more appropriate for a holiday with overpowering sunlight and sweltering heat than a holo?

I'm happy to report that it lasted the full 4 days with minimal tipwear. Apolo is a dark blue holo. The holo isn't as strong as some of my OPI DS's, but it's very pretty nonetheless. The formula was smooth and easy to apply, with no patchiness, and it dried quickly. This is 3 coats with one coat of Cult Nails Wicked Fast.



More holo!
HITS polishes are available at Llarowe and Ninja Polish for around the $8 mark.
Monday, November 5, 2012

Ulta3 Greetings from Paradise Candy Cane Collection Swatches

Phew, that's a long title! To start off, let me just apologise for the crappiness of the post you are about to read. My lightbox light got smashed yesterday so all these photos are taken on my extremely attractive brick front porch. To add to that, these have got to have the worst formula I have ever experienced in a nail polish. Thick, gloopy, sheer, streaky - name a problem, this collection has it. I seriously reswatched these about 3 times to try and get them to look good but I eventually just gave up and did them on swatch sticks.

These are the Greetings from Paradise collection by Ulta3, which come in both a giant metre-tall candy cane for $12.95 and there are some also available as a mini collection of 4 polishes. I picked up the candy cane at Terry White at Bondi Junction, and let me say, it was pretty embarassing being judged by that crowd, carrying it through the shopping centre because they didn't have bags big enough. Anyway, onto the actual polish:

All of these were somewhat sheer and watery, and also very streaky. They all needed 3 coats for full opacity, but streaks and patches were still visible.

Click "Read More" to continue reading!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Ulta3 New 2012 Glitters

A quick reminder that I'm having a giveaway! If you haven't entered yet, do so here :)

I'm not sure if this is actually a named collection, so I'll just refer to them as "the new Ulta3 glitters". Ulta3 released a glitter collection last year which were made up of uniform sized small glitters. This time around, they've packed in a variety of sizes. The result is a collection of six polishes that I think are great staples.

First up is Twinkle Toes, a silver glitter. It's a bit difficult to see exactly what sizes of hex glitter are in this, but I think I counted 4 different sizes. There's also a sneaky diamond shaped glitter on my ring finger, can you spot it? This is one dabbled coat over Ulta3 Blue Marlin.

Pot of Gold is a gold glitter. Not to be confused with the vastly inferior BYS Pot of Gold, which contains larger gold glitters, but is really sparse. Unlike the BYS polish, this one went on easily and there was no problem getting the glitter onto the nail. This is one dabbled coat over Sephora + Pantone Parachute Purple.

Over the Rainbow is the gem of this collection. Multi-coloured, multi-sized glitters! Of course there are already dozens of dupes of this out there, but one can never have enough multi-coloured glittery top coats. This is 2 dabbled coats on the index and middle finger, and 2 wiped coats on the ring and pinky fingers, over Ulta3 Melted Marshmallow. (At the Terry White where I picked these up there was a little stand with some suggested undies for each of the glitters, and this was one of the combos. I also used the combo for the red glitter, but I can't for the life of me remember what the other combos were and I can't find them online anywhere.)

New Year's Eve comes a close second favourite. It's an almost-dupe of piCture pOlish Splash, but Splash only has 2 different sizes of glitter, while New Year's Eve has 3 or 4. Am I the only person who thinks of Blue Year's Eve every time I read that name? This is 2 wiped coats over Ulta3 Sweet Violet.

Luck of the Irish is a straight forward green glitter. This is one dabbled coat over Ulta3 Corsican Rose.

And last but not least, here is Disco Fever, a red glitter. Fairly self-explanatory. This is one dabbled coat over Ulta3 Orchid (another one of the suggested combos).

Ulta3 polishes are available in pharmacies Australia-wide, and cost around $2 each.


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