Category Archives: blue

Cabin Fever

Winter been too long for you?  Had too much snow?  (Boston, I’m lookin’ at you.)  Been indoors too much?

Then you have cabin fever.  Actual cabin is not required.  Cabin fever is an all-too-real phenomenon here in Montana — in the winter, days are short, nights are long, skies are often gray, and the snow is often piled upon piles.  Sometimes you feel like if you don’t get out and do something different soon you’ll go nuts.

You can only watch so much Netflix and only check Facebook a finite number of times per day.  What you need, my friends, is to get out to Cabin Fever Days!  This annual event takes place among the metropolises of Martin City, Coram, and Hungry Horse, all of which are scattered in their cultural glory throughout Badrock Canyon, the gauntlet between the wide and beautiful Flathead Valley and Glacier National Park.

Narrow Badrock Canyon gets very little sunlight in the winter and is not recommended for those with Seasonal Affective Disorder (fancy schmancy name for cabin fever).  The hardy residents cope with the conditions by using various and handy aids — alcohol, trips out of state, alcohol, ice fishing, and alcohol.  Often firearms are involved.  Maybe arson.

The highlight of Cabin Fever Days is the world famous (so they tell me) BarStool Ski Races.  “It’s pretty easy to get yourself into the Barstool Ski Races. Mount some skis on something you can ride and put on a costume if the mood strikes you.”  What could be easier?  If you’re wondering about the difference between Steerable, Non-Steerable, Open, and Show Classes — and I know you are — you can read all about that too.

Need some video coaching?

[Warning:  alcohol may have been consumed by participants, judges, onlookers, and various pets.]

What does this have to do with nail polish?  Nothing.  But since I don’t have my flying barstool quite ready yet, I often combat cabin fever by playing with my nail polish and having an at-home spa day.  Here’s a new-to-me polish from Zoya, Crystal.

Crystal is from the 2010 winter/holiday collection called Fire & Ice, and man, was this set a winner!  Sarah, Tiffany, Gloria, Valerie, and Lisa were all gorgeous, not a runt in the litter.

Crystal is a clear base with tons of silvery blue and gold foil particles or microglitter.  The first coat was so sheer and streaky that I thought I’d have a hard time building up opacity but I didn’t.  Three coats, no top coat, under bright indirect outdoor light and then with the fill flash:


Crystal flash

Very wintry, but the gold sparkles keep it from being just another blue.

Now, get out and get busy!

Zoya’s Delight polishes – comparisons, Part 2

Disclosure:  Most of these polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

Two days ago I showed comparisons for the three shimmers in Zoya’s new spring collection, Delight.  Today let’s look at comps for the three cremes.

All photos are under indirect bright outdoor light.  Two to three coats of polish (I forgot to write each one down, duh) and no top coat.

First, the second blue polish in the set, Lillian.  It’s an aquamarine-leaning light blue.

Delight comp blue b

Delight comp blue b2

Blu, from last year’s Lovely Collection, is a lighter and more powder blue or baby blue.  Kristen’s an older polish, from the 2011 Feel Collection, and is a beautiful light grayish-blue.  I feel Blu looks a bit chalky on my skin tone and prefer Lillian or Kristen.

Now the pistachio green Tiana.

Delight comp green

I was asked to compare Tiana to Wednesday, but as you can tell, Wednesday is much darker and a definite teal, not light green, so I didn’t swatch it.

Delight comp green2

Tiana’s more yellowish and Neely is very slightly grayish.  Tiana had a better, thicker formula for me too.

Now the pink creme Eden.  So many possible comparisons!

Delight comp pink

I pulled these four other polishes and except for Kitridge they’re close but there are no complete dupes.  With the two lightest pinks in the group:

Delight comp pink2

Eden’s closest to Shelby but is a bit darker.  Both have a cool orchid tone.  Kitridge is a warmer bubble gum pink.

Delight comp pink3

Jolene and Rooney are near-dupes for each other but not for Eden, which is lighter and less fuchsia than the other two.

Of all these pinks, I like Shelby and Eden the best on my hands.  My bottle of Shelby is almost three years old and is starting to go “off” (as is Jolene) so I’m happy to replace it with Eden.

Disclosure:  Most of these polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

Zoya’s Delight polishes – comparisons, Part 1

Disclosure:  Most of these polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

It’s been a weird couple of days.  Our credit card number was stolen and getting that cleared up is a mountain of paperwork, a bunch of phone calls, and NO FUN.

Word to the wise —  check your bank/card statements often.  Set up email alerts for any deductions to your accounts (I had them for my checking account but not the credit card — lesson learned).  We’ve learned that hackers often start by making small charges to your account and if those slip through they try larger and larger amounts, maybe within a few hours.  $49.99 became $500 real fast but fortunately our wonderful bank caught it early.

Enough of that, let’s play with some polish.  Just a few comparisons aka comps today because my nails and cuticles are still not in the best shape.

The other day I showed you the new Delight Collection from Zoya and today I’ll do comps of the three shimmers.  All photos are under indirect outdoor light and I used three coats of every polish.

First, the lavender Leslie.

Delight comp lav2

I pulled several colors but thought that Zara and Dannii were obviously much darker than Leslie and not really close enough to need swatching.  Zara has a pretty golden shimmer to it; check my review here.  Dannii’s a great purple but not a lavender.

Here are Hudson and Julie compared to Leslie:

Delight comp lav

As you can see, Leslie almost looks pinkish by comparison and it has a turquoise shimmer.  Hudson is a heavier, more blue-toned foil, and Julie is a slightly grayish, lighter foil.

Now the shimmery blue of Rayne.

Delight comp blue2

I was asked to comp Jo but it’s so much darker and more periwinkle that I didn’t swatch it.  Jo’s been one of my fave blues for years.

Delight comp blue

Rayne and Rebel are fairly close, but Rebel is a thicker and darker foil.

Finally, the yellow Daisy.

Delight comp yellow2

Delight comp yellow

Brooklyn is more of a frost and brushstrokes are a bother.  Daisy and Piaf are very similar in color but Daisy has the Delight Collection’s turquoise shimmer.

Which should you get?  I can’t tell you.  Hudson and Rebel were two of my favorite polishes from 2014, and I think their slightly darker pastels look better on my skin tone.  Just a personal preference.

More comps later this week!

Disclosure:  Most of these polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

Delight Collection from Zoya — full review

Disclosure:  These polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

Wow, the Delight Collection — it’s like an Easter parade on your nails, a bag of jellybeans, a bouquet of flowers…. what other spring pastel clichés can I possible come up with?  There are three cremes and three shimmers; in each of the shimmers the metallic flash is a turquoise blue, a nice change from gold or silver.

The official press release:

Get ready for mouth-watering spring delights from Zoya!  Inspired by the soft and airy colors of the season, Zoya Delight serves up three cheerful creams and three turquoise flash metallics for an updated, flirty way to wear pastels!  All in the full-coverage, long-wearing, Big5Free* formula Zoya Nail Polish is famous for.


Delight bottles

Now it’s time for — as the country song says — a lot less talk and a little more action.  Photos are under indirect outdoor light with three coats of polish unless otherwise noted, and no top coat.  First the cremes.


Delight Lillian

Lillian is a sky blue with a hint of turquoise or aquamarine; it’s not a powder blue.


Delight Tiana

A light pistachio green, Tiana reminded me a bit of lime sherbet.  Which is a good thing.


Delight Eden

A bright, cool-toned medium pink that I love.  Two coats gave good coverage.

For each shimmer, the first photo is under indirect outdoor light and the second is with a fill flash.


Delight Leslie

Delight Leslie flash

I thought the shimmer might show up a bit more here, but it’s still a good spring pastel.


Delight Rayne

Delight Rayne flash

The turquoise shimmer seems to be the most visible in Rayne, but I suspect that’s because the base color is also blue.


Delight Daisy

Delight Daisy flash

Yellows have got to be THE toughest polish color to wear successfully!  I like Daisy much more than, say, a bright taxi cab yellow.

Some of these colors seem to make my skin look red but to be very honest with you, between all the swatching I’ve done in the last two days and the cold weather, I think my skin is going to look red no matter what.  So it’s hard for me to judge the polishes as fairly as they deserve.

I actually like them all.  Eden is great especially if you don’t already have a similar pink.  The turquoise shimmer makes Leslie, Rayne, and Daisy a bit different, and I like that too.

Compared to the new Naturel Satins that I swatched yesterday, the Delight Collection is so bright and cheerful-looking.  Not that one is better than the other, since it depends on what you need and what you’re in the mood for.  Arguing a case in court?  Maybe Ana from the Naturel Satins.  Going on an Easter egg hunt?  Perhaps Eden.

This weekend or early next week I plan to post a lot of comparisons of the Delights to older Zoya polishes.  Right now my nails need a rest, and there’s a pizza calling my name, too!


*As always, Zoya polish is BIG5FREE:  contains no formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, dibutyl phthalate, toluene, or camphor.

$9 (US)
Available in top salons, spas, and on

Disclosure:  These polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

Zoya Naturel Satins — full review

Disclosure:  These polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

Just received my Zoya Naturel Satins Collection today and you better believe I swatched them as fast as I could.  Many bloggers received their media samples last week, but through some glitch mine traveled via slow standard shipping instead of the usual express shipping.  Water under the bridge, though!

Zoya calls the Naturel Satins “a collection of six new, neutral nail polish colors in an ultra-wearable, low-sheen, chic satin finish.  A hybrid between matte and glossy polishes, the new Zoya Satin formula provides opaque coverage and is longer lasting than traditional matte shades. The flawlessly smooth finish hides imperfections and creates a luxurious, satin finish nail look.

It does seem that this satiny, semi-matte finish is the new trend this year.  The Naturel Satins are marketed as winter-into-spring colors.

Naturel Satins sampler

  • Leah: Lavender tinged taupe
  • Rowan: Creamy suede taupe
  • Sage: Mossy sage green
  • Tove: Misty slate grey
  • Brittany: Rose mauve cream
  • Ana: Light toasted almond

Naturel Satins spill

I was excited to get these.  As much as I love bright colors, this time of year I’m winding down from holiday hoopla and want something calm and serene.

Naturel Satins bottles

I found each polish applied and self-leveled well.  Some colors seemed to dry slightly more matte than others did, and for each one I used two coats, no top coat, under indirect outdoor light.


Naturel Satins Leah

I didn’t get any lavender vibe from Leah and thought that in person it was more of a gray putty color.


Naturel Satins Rowan

I should have used a third coat for Rowan as I now see it didn’t cover quite as well, and it didn’t seem to have quite the same finish as the others.  Yes, it’s taupe in that it’s brownish-gray, but I was hoping for more of a very light coffee color.


Naturel Satins Sage

Sage green indeed!  Although it, like most greens, makes my skin look red, I like it.  It’s a way to wear green polish without being too outré (“Oh no, Grandma’s wearing emerald green glitter!”  “Bite me, kiddos.”)


Naturel Satins Tove

Oops, got a speck of dust on my middle fingernail, sorry.  Tove looked more gray to me in person but compared to Leah and Rowan it seems more blue-ish.  I think it’s a nice late winter color.


Naturel Satins Brittany

Very pretty!  Just a good dusty pale pink.


Naturel Satins Ana

I don’t often drink beer wear nude polishes, but if I did I’d drink Dos Equis wear Ana.  Lovely.

Here are all the swatches together for comparison:

Naturel Satins all swatches

Overall I think this is a great set if you want pale, dusty colors and want to try the recent semi-matte finish.  Any of these would be good work-appropriate colors, except perhaps Sage because it is, after all, still noticeably green.  I love the satin finish — not too shiny, not dead-flat matte.  Very flattering on older hands.

My favorites are Brittany and Ana, and Sage too if I can stop thinking it gives me lobster hands.  Tove is OK on my skin tone, but I’m not in love with Leah or Rowan.  I would’ve liked to have seen a true dusty lavender, but maybe another collection on another day.

Disclosure:  These polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

Shine on with OPI

Disclosure:  This polish was supplied by Sleek Nail for review.

Last month I mentioned how online retailer Beyond Polish is now Sleek Nail.  They are definitely “beyond polish” and I’m thrilled that they’re carrying a huge selection of Nyx Cosmetics makeup, my new favorite drugstore brand.

But let’s shine with some polish today, specifically a brand-new polish from OPI’s “Fifty Shades of Grey” line called Shine For Me.

Shine For Me is a silver and blue dazzler.  It’s a clear base with silver shimmer and tiny blue glitter.  The formula was comfortably thick, but since the base is clear I needed several coats for good coverage.  I used three coats of Shine For Me and then a clear top coat to smooth out the very slight grittiness of the glitter.

Under indirect snowy outdoor light and then with the flash:

Shine for Me

Shine for Me flash

The polish itself is so sparkly that the camera flash pic is almost too shiny!  The sheerness of Shine For Me means it would also make a great top coat for other colors — perhaps over black or over a medium gray such as another polish in this OPI collection, Embrace the Gray.  Grey.  Gray.  Whatever.

I love blue polish and I love silver polish, so I love Shine For Me.   It’s not just a wintery color either and would be great any time.

As previously posted, Sleek Nail has a deal especially for readers of The Silver Nail.  Use code SILVERNAIL10 to get 10% off your first order when you create an account.

Disclosure:  This polish was supplied by Sleek Nail for review.

Road Tripping with Boho Blues

A couple of weeks ago I previewed China Glaze’s new Spring 2015 collection, Road Trip.


It’s out now!  Yesterday I was at Ulta and saw a new, untouched display.  So I touched it.  A few times.

The shade that was calling to me was Boho Blues, which China Glaze describes as “soft indigo blue creme.”

CG Boho Blues

I would call it a sky blue with a faint periwinkle or lavender tint, and it is a creme with no shimmer.  It’s a really lovely color.  Three coats, no top coat, under indirect outdoor light and then with the flash:

Boho Blues

Boho Blues flash

Unfortunately I didn’t like the formula.  It was thin and patchy, and no matter how long I waited between coats, the brush dug into the coat underneath.  You can see some obvious pebbling near my cuticles in the first picture.

Maybe it was just my bottle or the weather affecting things today, who knows.  As I said, it’s such a pretty color.  But is it unique?  Nah.  I’ve swatched similar ones before.

Rebecca from Julep:


Castle of Dreams from Pure Ice:

Castle of Dreams outd

Also, looking at China Glaze’s own Avant Garden, the spring set from last year, Fade Into Hue looks close.  Here are swatches of that whole set from The Polishaholic.  Plus I’ve tried some shimmers that are close in color but which of course have a different finish.

Cremes pretty much have to have a “wow factor” for me any more, and while Boho Blues is pretty, it’s not wow because of the formula.  Price was $7.50 at Ulta for a full-sized bottle, 0.5 oz/14 ml.  They also had a set of six “micro minis” (0.125 oz, only enough for a couple of manis each) from the Road Trip Collection which included Boho Blues.  Its price wasn’t marked but at Ulta’s web site it’s $12.00.  Cute, and I wish I’d bought it instead to try some of the other shades.


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