Category Archives: green

The best polishes of 2015

Posted on

Disclosure:  The Zoya and SinfulColors polishes were previously supplied by the company for review.

I started doing a “best of the year” post last year and thought I’d do it again.  Once again, I’m only covering nail polish because I don’t think I reviewed enough makeup to have a “best of” for that.

Roll film!

Best Pink:  Cherry Blossom from SinfulColors

Cherry Blossom flash

I didn’t see as many foils this year as usual, and it’s my favorite finish.  Sparkly yet not glittery, and no brushstrokes.  Cherry Blossom’s shade of pink made me happy just to look at it.

Best Red:  Ember from Zoya

FlairEmber

What a glowing red, nothing plain about Ember.  Excellent formula too.

Best Gold:  Date Night from Nonie Creme Color Prevails

Date Night outd

Foil.  Give me more foil.

Best Green:  Honor from Zoya

MV15 Honor outd

Honor, from the Winter MatteVelvet Collection, is obviously matte (duh) and in the photo I show it compared to Zoya’s previous Veruschka.  They were almost exact duplicates, and Veruschka is no longer available.

Best Blue:  Yves from Zoya

MV15 Yves outd

Yves is another from the Winter MatteVelvet set.  It and Honor both had a fantastic formula.

Best Lavender:  Rose Dust from SinfulColors

Rose Dust

This baby applied like a dream and was perfect for spring.

Best Purple:  Giada from Zoya

Flair Giada

I’m addicted to these shimmery, violet-toned purples.

Best Blue-Purple:  Yeah, it’s a new category for me.  I loathe the term “blurple,” which sounds like a rude digestive noise, but that’s what many people call that color in between blue and purple.  Anyway, I loved OPI’s Cosmo With A Twist.  Here it is both without and then with a matte top coat.

Cosmo waT outd2

Cosmo waT mattified

Best White, Gray, or Silver:  Aspen from Zoya

MV15 Aspen outd

Like sparkling snow!

Best Brown:  Cinnamon from Zoya

Flair Cinnamon

Best Duochrome or Multichrome:  Cabin Fever from China Glaze

Cabin Fever outd

Cabin Fever flash

Pink, copper, gold, green — Cabin Fever had it all.

Best Top Coat and Best Glitter:  Mr. Wrong from Nonie Creme Colour Prevails

ColPrev Mr. Wrong two coats

This is two coats of Mr. Wrong over a black creme.

Overall, I felt 2015 was kind of an off year for polish, even though there were many individual ones I loved.  First — and this is purely personal preference — there was a yawn-inducing, mind-numbing prevalence of sheer and/or skin-toned neutrals in the fashion world and for the most part I say BORING.  Secondly, where was the innovation, new finishes, new and exciting colors?  (That’s a rhetorical question — they were buried in mannequin-hands neutrals).

But still, the final winners of BEST POLISH:  It’s a tie between Ember and Cabin Fever, pictured above.  Ember, while “only” a red, is not plain by any stretch of the imagination.  It seems to glow with an inner light.  Cabin Fever was so interesting and different that I want to keep it as a pet in a cage and stare at it.

Picking a BEST COLLECTION of the year was difficult, as there was no one set where I loved every single color.  But the closest was the fall Flair Collection from Zoya:

ZP_FLAIR_GROUP SHOT_RGB

 

Yep, I love fall and fall polishes, the rich colors, the anti-neutrals.  Hope I chose some of your favorites too.  Happy New Year!!

Disclosure:  The Zoya and SinfulColors polishes were previously supplied by the company for review.

Whispers Collection from Zoya — comparisons

Posted on

Disclosure:  The Whispers Collection and the comparison polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

I hope my review yesterday of the new Whispers Collection, while brief, was helpful.

Whispers set

Left to right:  Cala, April, Eastyn, Misty, Ireland, and Lake

After thinking it over, I believe I should have used a third coat for several of the polishes for better results, particularly the two lightest colors, Cala and April.  Also, April has grown on me; it’s a very pretty pale rose, but I still think it would look better on someone with very light or very dark skin.

Well, let’s do some comps.  I’m reading that Whispers reminds many people of the Naturel Satins set from one year ago, and I think that too.  The finish is different; Naturel Satins was all semi-mattes and Whispers is all glossy cremes.  Also, I’ll only be comparing Zoyas.

I’m going to show old photos of the comparison polishes along with the new Whispers ones because I’ve done a major stash purge (to benefit local homeless teens) and no longer own most of these older shades.

First, Cala:

Whispers Cala

Ana from Naturel Satins:

Naturel Satins Ana

Taylor and Chantal from the original Naturel Collection:

Chantal and Taylor w Chantal bottle

Of these three comps, I think Chantal is the closest to Cala.  I liked Chantal’s formula better and thought it was much smoother.  Ana is paler, a tad pinker, and semi-matte, and Taylor is more tan.

April:

Whispers April

Brittany:

Naturel Satins Brittany

Rue:

Rue

Dot:

Awaken Dot

Brittany is very close except for its finish.  Rue is darker and more lavender.  Dot is darker (although still a very pale pink) and much peachier-toned.

Eastyn:

Whispers Eastyn

Leah:

Naturel Satins Leah

Very similar except for the finish.  Both were more gray than purple or lavender to me.

Misty:

Whispers Misty

Rowan:

Naturel Satins Rowan

Rowan was gray-taupe without Misty’s greenish tint.

Ireland:

Whispers Ireland

Sage:

Naturel Satins Sage

Tiana:

Delight Tiana

Not that close but I wanted to show them anyway.  Sage has a slight teal tone and Tiana is much brighter, kind of like lime sherbet.

Lake:

Whispers Lake

Tove:

Naturel Satins Tove

Blu, Lillian, and Kristen:

Delight comp blue b2

Tove is close although slightly more gray.  Blu is paler and chalkier, Lillian is more teal, and Kristen is only a hair darker.

Of all these comparisons, I found no true duplicates.  Nevertheless, some are very close.  Probably the most similar ones are Cala to Chantal, and Eastyn to Leah.  Remember, you can always put a satin top coat on a glossy polish or vice versa.

Did I forget any?  Ask away, and if I have pictures I’ll post them.

The Whispers Collection is available for pre-order at ZOYA.COM , and there is a sale too.  Check my review yesterday for details.

**BIG5FREE, TOXIN FREE: Zoya Nail Polish Formula contains no formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, dibutyl phthalate, toluene, or camphor.

Disclosure:  The Whispers Collection and the comparison polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

Whispers Collection from Zoya — full review

Posted on

Disclosure:  These polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

They’re here!  Just got my media samples of the Whispers Collection.  Without further ado (’cause I’m fresh out of ado):

Whispers set

Here are Zoya’s official color descriptions:

  • Cala – ZP823: A soft nude with a kiss of warmth that will flatter most skin tones.
  • April – ZP824: A light, rosy toned neutral that is a modern take on blush.
  • Eastyn – ZP825: A subtle grayed grape that is more interesting than mauve and gives a modern alternative that is ever so wearable.
  • Misty – ZP827: An easy to wear taupe that is an updated version of gray with just a touch of green to make it daring.
  • Ireland – ZP826: A uniquely wearable green that is muted enough to make it subtle yet still interesting. This green is well balanced between blue & yellow so it’s flattering on all skin tones.
  • Lake – ZP828: A softened blue that gives the effect of serene water with just a hint of vibrancy to preserve its luminosity.

All pictures show two coats of polish with no top coat and are photographed under indirect outdoor light.

Whispers Cala

Cala is indeed nude.

Whispers April

April is rosier than Cala, but still what I’d call a neutral.

Whispers Eastyn

Eastyn, hmmm.  Looked more lavender in the bottle but appears more gray on my nails.

Whispers Misty

Misty.  Well, Zoya’s description of taupe with a grayish and greenish tint is spot on.  What to say, what to say.  We had walls painted this color when we moved into our current house.

They were the first to go.

Whispers Ireland

I’m glad they gave the name Ireland to this green.  It’s a pretty pale sage that would probably look better on warmer-toned skin but I still like it.

Whispers Lake

And Lake for the blue.  Ooh, now we’re talkin’!  I love this one, and pale blues often look chalky on me but I don’t think Lake does.  It’s rather a grayish-blue and I think it looks great.  Lake is definitely my favorite of the set.

I found the formula to be a bit thin and streaky for all six polishes.  Dry time was fast but not unusually so.

This is an appropriate set for late winter and early spring, a calm bridge between the jewel tones of winter and the brighter pastels of spring.  Will it be to everyone’s taste?  No, but then nothing is.  Frankly, this has been a hard collection to review because I feel few of the colors look good on my skin tone, and I don’t work in an office or situation where such muted neutrals would be just the ticket.  You may have lighter/darker/different skin, though, and love them.  I hope so!

I’m also prejudiced because I think the polish world in general has waaaaay overdone neutrals in the past year or two, and they are not my cup of acetone.  How similar is Whispers to last year’s Naturel Satins?  The finish is different, glossy vs. satin, and while the two collections are by no means duplicates, some of the shades are similar.  I will be posting comparisons later in the week.

AVAILABLE NOW FOR PRE-ORDER at ZOYA.COM

**BIG5FREE, TOXIN FREE: Zoya Nail Polish Formula contains no formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, dibutyl phthalate, toluene, or camphor.

But hold the phone, I mean the mouse!

Zoya is having a big sale on this set, even though it’s brand new.

unnamed

Get all six shades now at a special pre-order price of just $33, plus free shipping!  Orders will start shipping 1/15/16.  See details below and click HERE to pre-order the collection sampler.

Pre-Order the NEW Whispers Sampler
Special Price $33 (Original Price $54)
NOW – 1/3 (11:59pm EST)
Use Code: PSST

Terms & Conditions:
Valid online only at www.zoya.com through 1/03/15 (11:59pm EST).  Not valid in conjunction with other coupons, codes or promotions.  Continental US & Canada ONLY.  Art of Beauty is not responsible for incorrect addresses, credit card entry errors, web related issues or any errors associated with declined credit cards.  Returns or exchanges of promotional items not permitted.  Code must be entered at time of purchase – code cannot be reinstated on canceled orders.  Please allow up to 4 weeks for processing if volume warrants it.

Read all the fine print and rules.  It’s a great deal but amazingly it will not work if you try to use an expired credit card, etc.

Disclosure:  These polishes were supplied by Zoya for review.

Freefall with Zoya

Posted on

Hey, Zoya’s having another one of their great sales!  This time, a select but large group of fall shades is BOGO — buy one get one free.  So it’s a free fall.  Freefall.  Get it?  😉

Zoya free fall

Read all about ‘er:

The leaves are changing, and so should your nails! Fall in love with the colors of the season with an awesome autumn BOGO. Now you can Buy One Get One FREE on select shades from the Fall Nail Polish Page HERE, for a limited time only.

Buy Any Fall Nail Polish Shade Get One FREE*!

NOW – 11/01/15 (11:59pm EST)
USE CODE: FBG

How it works:
1. Add at least two (2) nail polish colors to your cart from the Fall Nail Polish Page HERE.
2. Enter code FBG into the coupon code field and press “Apply Code”.
3. Complete check out, review and submit order. Codes cannot be reinstated on canceled orders.

*Terms and Conditions
Valid for items on the Fall Nail Polish page at www.zoya.com through 11/01/15 (11:59pm EST). Not valid in conjunction with other coupons, codes or promotions. Shipping & Handling fees apply. Continental US & Canada ONLY. Free items valid on open stock nail polish bottles only for equal or lesser value. Excludes Zoya Nail Treatments and Naked Manicure Products. Art of Beauty is not responsible for incorrect addresses, credit card entry errors, web related issues or any errors associated with declined credit cards. Returns or exchanges of promotional items not permitted. Code must be entered at time of purchase – code cannot be reinstated for canceled orders. One code per account. Please allow up to 4 weeks for processing if volume warrants it.

**********************

This is awesome, so many good colors to choose from, including some of my all-time Zoya favorites:  Cinnamon, Autumn, India, and many more.  Plus Zoya has said on their Facebook page that if your order after the discount is over $20 you get free shipping.

Please note all the fine print.  You cannot combine coupons, which is nothing new.  Also let me hit you over the head with the fact that the sale is only good on the select fall shades — 65 of them! — shown on the Fall Nail Polish Page linked above.  So the new Winter Mattes are not included nor are other colors/polishes.  So of course people online are complaining.  They will only be happy when Zoya pays them to get polish.  Sheesh.

One older polish on the sale page that I’ve had for a while but not reviewed is Edyta.  It’s from the Fall 2010 Wicked Collection.  And it is kinda wicked, in a good way.  Edyta is a dark golden green foil in a blackened base, a rather unusual color.

The formula was a bit thin and the first coat was streaky.  Second coat was better with the first coat to grab on to, and the third coat gave good coverage.  Under indirect outdoor light (sorry it’s fuzzy; the light is very dark and gloomy today) and then with the flash:

Edyta outd

Edyta flash

Different!  It reminds me of Pretty Poison from CND Vinylux, but I think Edyta is more black and Pretty Poison is more green.  Now, knock yourselves out with that sale.  It’s not too early to be getting some great polish to give for the holidays, and the Fall Sale Page has lots of reds, greens, and not-just-for-fall colors.

Winter 2015 Matte Velvets from Zoya – Part 3

Posted on

Disclosure:  These polishes were provided by Zoya for review.

Hope you enjoyed the first and second parts of my review of the new Winter Matte Velvet polishes from Zoya.  I showed Sue in the first part and then Aspen, Yves, and Amal in the second.  Here’s another pretty promo shot from the company.

Zoya matte velvets 15 bottles

Today let’s see the green, Honor.  Emerald is a great description of it, and the formula was excellent.  Two coats yielded good coverage.   I’m going to go ahead and show you Honor with an earlier Matte Velvet, Veruschka.  They are very close, near-dupes, but not total dupes because Honor is a hair lighter and brighter, and Veruschka has a sheerer blackened base that’s streakier on the first coat.  The bottles:

MV15 Honor and Ver bottles

Swatches under indirect outdoor light and with the flash, with the bottle of Honor:

MV15 Honor outd

MV15 Honor flash

And with a clear shiny top coat, the colors look even closer.  Same lighting:

MV15 Honor top coat outd

MV15 Honor top coat flash

SUPER close.  If you already have Veruschka then you’re easy bein’ green, but if you don’t have either then I think Honor’s formula is better.  The one time I can really tell a difference in the two colors is at a very sharp angle, which was hard to photograph.

MV15 Honor angle

Iris is a good name for a purple polish, wouldn’t you say?  Zoya had a different purple Matte Velvet shade previously called Savita and also had a magenta one called Harlow.  I’m going to show you all three together.

MV15 Iris Har Sav bottles

Iris’s formula was good but was a little thinner and streakier than Honor’s.  I used three coats of it and coincidentally also needed three coats of both Harlow and Savita.  Under indirect outdoor light and then with the flash, with the bottle of Iris:

MV15 Iris outd

MV15 Iris flash

Hopefully it’s obvious that Iris is not a dupe of either Savita or Harlow yet seems to be a blend of the two.  Savita is a dark blue-purple, Iris is dark pinkish-plum, and Harlow is a magenta that also has the most sparkle.  Pick your favorite shade!  Well, you can’t pick Harlow any more because it’s discontinued but Savita is still available.  With a clear shiny top coat:

MV15 Iris top coat outd

MV15 Iris top coat flash

Definitely not dupes whatsover.  I think all three are really pretty, but then I’m a purple hog.

*****************************

My overall impressions of the Winter 2015 Matte Velvet set are mostly positive.  I love all the colors but one, and ironically it’s the one I was looking forward to the most, Sue.  My bottle is not even close to the lovely light gold seen in the promo pics.  I don’t know if I got a bad bottle or what, but my Sue is an ultra-pale white gold that, while pretty, is not what I was expecting and which I don’t think is the greatest on my skin tone.  I still like it but am not nuts about it.

If you’re interested in Sue but really wanted more of a gold shade, I would seek out swatches from other bloggers and see what they say and show.  Maybe I’m all wet.  It’s also a good idea to look at polishes in person whenever possible before you buy.

My favorite color of the set?  That’s easy — Yves.  I don’t have a matte polish close to the beautiful royal/indigo blue there, and also I like that it’s a new color for Zoya to have in their matte lineup.  My second favorite is Aspen, because it looks so snow-like and wintry.  Pairing Yves with Aspen, either in nail art or in a manicure of all one color with the other as an accent nail?  Yes please!!

Amal and Honor are very beautiful, rich colors yet are close to ones that Zoya already had.  If you never got any of the old ones then that happily does not matter.  Iris is a great plum-purple, and it’s my third fave since it’s not like either the older colors of Savita or Harlow, yet is halfway between the two.

All the Matte Velvets are virtually scent-free, which is great.  I’ve had some mattes from other companies that smelled so harsh and chemical-y that they about knocked me out.

If I ran the polish world — which I most definitely do not nor do I expect to — then I would’ve picked some colors to be in this set that weren’t previously done.  How about a matte copper or bronze?  How about a matte silver or true gold?  Just ideas.

As always, Zoya nail polish formula contains no formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, dibutyl phthalate, toluene, or camphor.

Available NOW at Zoya.com and at salons and some retail outlets.  SRP $10 each.  There’s currently a special running in which you can get free shipping if you order any of the Mattes.  Use code MATTES and offer is good through 10/31/15 (11:59pm EST).  Codes cannot be combined and other restrictions may apply.  See Zoya’s Facebook page for the offer, too.

Disclosure:  These polishes were provided by Zoya for review.

Cabin Fever, the polish

Posted on

I’ve talked about cabin fever the mental state before; today let’s talk about a polish named Cabin Fever.

Really liked the new China Glaze (CG) I got the other day, Wood You Wanna? from the fall set called The Great Outdoors, and I mentioned that Ulta was having a BOGO sale (now expired as far as I know) on all CGs.  What fun is a BOGO if you only get one?  So of course I got two.

The other one I picked up was Cabin Fever, an interesting multichrome.  More than just a duochrome, it flashes mostly copper and rosy pink but also has a greenish-gold shift.  I don’t have anything quite like it.

The formula is good although upon first application it seems frosty and streaky.  However, as it dries it self-levels extremely well and made brushstrokes a non-issue.  Under indirect bright outdoor light, with the flash, and in direct sunlight:

Cabin Fever outd

Cabin Fever flash

Cabin Fever sun

Same lighting conditions but at a different angle:

Cabin Fever outd2

Cabin Fever flash2

Cabin Fever sun2

Wow, looks like I’m holding three different bottles but I assure you it’s just the one.  As you can see, different colors in Cabin Fever are visible under different light and at various angles.  In direct sunlight it even looks bronze.  Really a fun, interesting polish — it’s like the changing autumn leaves in a bottle.

Having a Blast with SinfulColors

Posted on

Disclosure:  These polishes were provided by SinfulColors for review.

Wanted to get this review up ASAP today, because it’s the last day to take advantage of Walgreens’ 99-cent sale on SinfulColors polishes.  Have you gotten some good ones?

SinfulColors has a small set for summer called Having a Blast.  At first glance it looks mostly 4th of July, but it could also be for Canada Day (July 1st) with its red and white, and there’s one polish that’s very beachy.  These are all re-promotes except I believe the red, white, and blue glitter called Star Blast Off is new, as my bottle has no number or bar code.  Still, SinfulColors usually has a similar glitter polish every summer.

SC Blast bottles

Left to right:

  • Ruby Ruby #369
  • Snow Me White #101
  • Hot Spot #943
  • Out of This World #842
  • Star Blast Off
  • Green Ocean #220

Ruby Ruby needs no introduction from me, as I liked it so much I already bought it two years ago!  My full review is here and here’s a photo again.  It’s a great true red creme, a classic.

Ruby Ruby flash

Snow Me White is a plain white creme, and I’ve found similar polishes problematic in the past, too streaky or patchy.  Snow Me White was neither of those things, had a good formula, and covered well in two coats.

Out of This World looks like a white shimmer in the bottle but is more of a silver-white.  It’s more sheer than Snow Me White and I used three coats but could still see my nail line, so I think it’s supposed to be a sparkly top coat.

All my photos today are with the camera flash.  Out of This World and Snow Me White with the bottle of Snow Me White:

SC Blast silver white

Hot Spot is an inky blue shimmer.  Two coats:

SC Blast blue

Star Blast Off, as I’ve said, is a red, white, and blue glitter in a clear base.  As with my bottle of Mamasita in the Street Fusion set, though, the base in Star Blast Off had turned a pale pink, even more so than my bottle of Mamasita.  I think the red glitter bled due to the hot weather in shipment but I can’t be sure.  Mamasita is also red, white, and blue, but Star Blast Off has large stars in it.

You have to fish for the stars with the brush, which is not difficult.  The stars are so big that they don’t lie flat to the curve of my nails, but a little extra clear base of the polish over them would help.

SC Blast glitter

I tried Star Blast Off over Snow Me White but didn’t like it due to (a) the pink-tinted base and (b) none of the white glitter showed up.  I like it over the dark blue Hot Spot.

Finally, Green Ocean is a very pale green sheer base with blue-green metallic glitter and tiny shards.  It really does give an ocean or mermaid look.  Also over Hot Spot:

SC Blast ocean

I like all these polishes and Hot Spot, the dark blue, is probably my fave.  It would be fun to experiment with Out of This World and Green Ocean over other colors, too.

SinfulColors does all that internet stuff:

SinfulColors.com

facebook.com/sinfulcolors

twitter.com/SinfulColors_NP

instagram.com/sinfulcolorsprofessional

Disclosure:  These polishes were provided by SinfulColors for review.

%d bloggers like this: