Category Archives: purple

The best polishes of 2015

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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


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:



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.

Another Mineral Fusion — Amethyst

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Some quick swatches today.  Yesterday I had my first post about the brand Mineral Fusion that I picked up at Ulta so please read that one if you’re curious about size of bottle, price, etc.  I showed the beautiful red-brown polish Brownstone.

Here’s the other MF polish I bought, Amethyst.

Amethyst bottle

Application and formula were great and most other details such as the brush are like I posted yesterday.  Amethyst, though, was a sweet one-coater.  It’s a plum-purple shimmer that’s slightly red-toned.  With no top coat and under indirect cloudy outdoor light, you don’t really see the subtle sparkle:

Amethyst outd

But you do with the flash:

Amethyst flash

I’m sure you’d also see the shimmer in bright sunlight.

A close-up:

Amethyst closeup

Gorgeous!  I love dark, inky colors like this when my nails are very short.  Fashionable without being witchy (I hope).  The one-coat advantage makes this a highly recommended polish, and now I want even more Mineral Fusions!

Cosmo with a Twist

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Woo, got a new holiday shade to show off!  Recently — well, a month ago already… time flies when you’re waiting for your local stores to get new releases in — Canadian beauty blogger BeautyGeeks swatched the entire Starlight holiday collection from OPI, all 18 shades.  Quite a few beautiful ones there, but the only one I was dying to have was the blue-purple shimmer Cosmo With A Twist (CWAT).

Finallyfinallyfinally my Ulta got the set.  I almost bought the deep red shimmer Let Your Love Shine, picked it up and put it back twice.  Really don’t need another shimmery red, though.  I have enough to paint Santa’s workshop as it is.

Cosmo With A Twist is a sheer grape purple base with loads of blue and purple sparkles.  OPI always has such good sturdy brushes and handles, too.  The first coat was sheer and streaky, and the second was still patchy in spots so I used three.  With no top  coat under indirect cloudy outdoor light:

Cosmo waT outd

This looked more blue than I thought it appeared in person, so I moved closer to the window and snapped this:

Cosmo waT outd2

Hmmm, still looks more blue than purple but I see more purple in the bottle.  With a fill flash:

Cosmo waT flash

Ooh, aah.  Starry night sky!  I wouldn’t call CWAT a duochrome because the color does not change at different angles.

I decided to try one quick coat of my Butter London matte top coat and got this.  Indirect outdoor light:

Cosmo waT mattified

Doesn’t look super-matte but I love it anyway.

CWAT and the other OPI shades were $9.50 at Ulta, but they are having a sale of two OPIs for $16 if you’re interested.  Plus if you buy at least two you get a gift with purchase, which in my store was a little pink scarf (participation may vary).

Cosmo With A Twist isn’t the most Christmasy of colors, but when it comes to blue-purples, what can I say; I’m a pig.  I must have been deprived of blue and purple crayons in childhood.

Winter 2015 Matte Velvets from Zoya – Part 3

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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 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.

The Power of Positive Inking

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Quick swatch today.  Have you been taking advantage of this week’s 99-cent sale at Walgreens on SinfulColors polishes?  Hope you were smarter than I — despite my telling you to hurry down before the displays were picked over, I waited an extra day myself.  Idjit.  The selection was verrrrry limited and I didn’t get any of the newest colors.

A few weeks earlier, though, I bought a handful from the Oh Snap! Collection.  Love me some pinky-purples.  One of the cremes is called Ink Positive (#1543).

Ink Positive is a light plum or berry color, pretty any time.  It was more sheer than I prefer and I used three coats.  Thought that was OK but as I look at this photo, an additional coat or two would have been much better.  It dried quickly and very glossy.  With the camera flash:

Ink Positive flash

When I shook my bottle of Ink Positive, I couldn’t tell if there were any mixing beads in it, so perhaps that was part of the problem.  At any rate, it’s a beautiful berry color, reminds me a lot of how your fingers look when you’ve been out picking huckleberries, most of which seem to go in your mouth instead of in your gathering bucket.  And yes, I considered naming this post Huckleberry Fin… gernails.  [rim shot]

Have a great weekend!

Why yes. Yes, I wood.

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Geeky madness here.  My favorite (currently only, as well) MMORPG is having a beta weekend starting now to test its new expansion pack, and I’m nerdily anxious to play.  So you get a short post from me.  But a good one!

China Glaze’s fall collection, The Great Outdoors, had me all excited when it was first announced.  As time went on and swatches appeared, my enthusiasm dimmed which is actually good for my wallet.  There was one shade, though, that I just had to have.  Wood You Wanna? is a silvery gray-purple-brown foil.

I love brown polishes yet am picky about them.  Don’t like them looking like dirt or…. other organic matter, if ya know what I mean.  A good way to avoid this with browns is to get a shimmer, foil, or glitter instead of a plain creme.

Ulta is currently having a BOGO sale on all China Glaze (CG) polishes, good through tomorrow, Saturday.  New releases are included.  That’s buy one get one free, a rare sale these days; usually things are buy one get one half off.  So two CGs that normally cost $7.50 each are $3.75 each.  ♪ ♫ Awwwwe-some! ♫ ♪

Wood You Wanna? applied extremely smoothly and gave good coverage in one coat.  Yes, it’s that rare bird, a one-coat wonder.  It also dried very shiny.  Under indirect bright outdoor light, with the flash, and under artificial indoor light:

Wood U outd

Wood U flash

Wood U ind

I love this polish.  LOVE IT.  Right up my alley for fall, and it’s a brown that looks good on my cool-toned skin.  Oh, and it begs a comparison to another new fall color I reviewed, Frock ‘n Roll from Essie.

Wood U comp

Not dupes.  Wood You Wanna? is more brown and silver, and Frock ‘n Roll is more purple.  I like both.

Have a great weekend!


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Yesterday I showed you some of the understated — if not downright underwhelming — sheer Naked Manicure products from Zoya.  What’s the opposite of demure?


Doing a 180 today with Interstellar (#1571) from SinfulColors.  It’s a new polish in their limited edition Truly Madly Sparkly line.  There are three polishes in this set plus an additional five that are Walgreens exclusives.  I often wait to buy SinfulColors polishes when Walgreens has a 99-cent sale, but I didn’t want to miss out on Interstellar and so paid the still-not-exorbitant price of $1.99 for a full 0.5 oz/15 mL bottle.  There are a couple of teals in the set that tempted me as well.

Interstellar is a sheer amethyst purple base packed with bright purple, blue, silver, and holo tiny glitter.  No hex glitter.  No large pieces of round glitter that “taco,” or fold up on themselves.

After I got home I found that my bottle had not been closed tightly — someone probably opened it to look at the polish — and so it was rather thick.  Still usable, however, and I can always add thinning drops later.  I put one coat of Interstellar alone on my little finger to show you how sheer it is, three coats of Interstellar alone on my ring finger, and one coat of it over a plain black creme on my middle (left-most) finger.  Under indirect bright outdoor light:

Interstellar indirect

With the flash:

Interstellar flash

These two photos show my camera’s maddening tendency to see blue-purples as mostly blue.  But Interstellar is really mostly purple.  A much more accurate color representation is visible here in direct sunlight:

Interstellar sun

You can see how sheer one coat is, and even three look patchy.  I love it over black, though.

As an aside, Interstellar is also the name of a recent scifi/dystopian movie starring Matthew McConaughey.  Makes you think.  Trailer here.  And “Truly Madly Sparkly” made me think of another film, Truly Madly Deeply from 1990.  This is one of those “be careful what you wish for” movies — heartbroken Nina cries to have her recently-deceased boyfriend Jamie back, and sure enough, he comes back as a ghost.  But he brings friends….. and won’t leave.  Trailer here.

Have a great weekend!

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