Tag Archives: honor

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.

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 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.

Zoya’s Winter 2015 Matte Velvets available now

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Although the pre-release sale price is past, the new Winter 2015 Matte Velvet Collection from Zoya is now available for general sale at Zoya.com.

Zoya winter mattes banner

Zoya winter mattes triple spill 2


Zoya winter mattes triple spill

Official press release:

Six new MATTEVELVET Nail Colors to slip into this WINTER/HOLIDAY season.

The best-selling, MATTEVELVET finish returns this holiday season with six new shades. Each nail polish perfectly opaque, matte color with that extra special ZOYA MATTEVELVET fleck finish everyone loves.

  • Aspen (ZP814) – a sparkling artic white with a micronized diamond pearl fleck.
  • Sue (ZP815) – a soft champagne gold with a multi-hued oyster shell pearl fleck.
  • Amal (ZP816) – a classic crimson red with a ruby red pearl fleck.
  • Iris (ZP817) – a deep amethyst with a fuchsia pearl fleck.
  • Yves (ZP818) – a deep sapphire that’s midway in between indigo and royal blue with a blue pearl fleck.
  • Honor (ZP819) – a true emerald green with a tone on tone emerald pearl fleck.

NOTE: MATTEVELVET nail color by Zoya is not intended to be worn with a base coat, glossy top coat or speed dryer. Due to the unique matte formulation, color is not as long-wearing as traditional nail color. A completely clean, dry surface yields the best results for matte nail color wear. To extend wear, apply one coat of the Zoya Matte Velvet Topcoat over your favorite matte shades after polish is completely dry.


Zoya MATTEVELVET Colors, 0.5 oz. –  $10 (US) ea.
Zoya MATTEVELVET Color Sampler, 6 – 0.5 oz. bottles –  $60 (US)

Available in top salons, spas and on zoya.com

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


Watch LIVE as Zoya Nail Polish on Periscope.
Follow Zoya on Periscope: @ZoyaNailPolish



Zoya winter mattes Aspen


Zoya winter mattes Sue


Zoya winter mattes Amal


Zoya winter mattes Iris


Zoya winter mattes Yves


Zoya winter mattes Honor

Hope I will be able to review these and compare them to Zoya’s previous Matte Velvets such as Posh and Veruschka.

Sneak peek and a great deal from Zoya — Winter 2015 Matte Velvets!

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Look what landed in my inbox.  And since Zoya is freely discussing it and advertising the code on their Facebook page, ain’t no secret!

Zoya winter mattes

Sneak Peek + VIP First Access! The highly coveted and anticipated, MatteVelvet formula is back by popular demand for Holiday/Winter 2015 in 6 NEW matte shades – which become officially available on 10/1/2015!  As a special thank-you to our valued customers, we’re giving you first access to the entire set at a special pre-order price of $40 + FREE Shipping (regular retail price $60) through Monday 9/28. Pre-order the set HERE.

Pre-Order the NEW MatteVelvet Sampler
Special Price $40 (Original Price $60)
NOW – 9/28 (11:59pm EST)

How it Works:

1. Add the Matte Velvet Winter/Holiday Sampler to your shopping cart.
2. Enter Code: MATTEUP into the coupon code field in cart and press “Apply Code”
3. Complete check-out, review and submit order

*Terms & Conditions
Valid online only at www.zoya.com 9/25/15 – 9/28/15 (11:59pm EST). Special pre-order price only applies to the new MatteVelvet Sampler (ZPSAMPLER1507). Continental US and Canada ONLY. Not valid in conjunction with other coupons, codes or gift with purchase items. Returns or exchanges of promotional items not permitted. Art of Beauty is not responsible for incorrect addresses, credit card entry errors, declined credit cards or web related issues. Code must be entered at the time of purchase – code cannot be reinstated on canceled orders


$40 for a full-sized set of six plus free shipping is an awesome deal.  I’ve often wished Zoya would have a discount for ordering an entire set.  Please note this sale price is now through Monday 9/28 ONLY!  You snooze, you lose.

Here are more pix:


Zoya winter mattes Aspen


Zoya winter mattes Sue


Zoya winter mattes Amal


Zoya winter mattes Iris


Zoya winter mattes Yves


Zoya winter mattes Honor

I think the colors look very festive, don’t you?  I wonder how close the red, green, and purple ones are to previous MatteVelvets from Zoya.  I don’t think they’re dupes.

Not sure yet if I’ll get media samples for review.  Hope so.  And I am extremely selfishly pleased that there’s finally a “Sue”!!  😀

The SquareHue July box — The Salute Collection

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Disclosure:  one polish in the comparison pictures was supplied by SquareHue.

My polish-of-the-month club July box from SquareHue arrived a couple of days ago — The Salute Collection — and from the first preview picture, I was expecting the stereotypical red, white, and blue.


But then they showed a second preview picture with an Armed Services look:

SqH Salute 2

I’m happy to report that the set is NOT red, white, and blue, and I say thank goodness for that.  There are enough 4th of July clichés already, and the 4th is only one day of the month.

So let’s see what we did get:

SqH July box

SqH July bottles

SqH July bottles 2

First up, Valor, an olive green or Army green creme.  The first two coats were rather streaky but three gave good coverage.  I didn’t use a clear top coat in any of my swatches today.  Under indirect outdoor light:


This is a very fashionable color (I’ve read Chanel has a similar one in their new fall line) but one I’d probably wait ’til fall to wear.  You could do some fun camouflage-type nail art with it.

I wondered if I had a dupe in Zoya’s Evvie.  No — close, but not a dupe.  Evvie is slightly cooler in tone.  Valor on my ring finger and two coats of Evvie on my little finger:

Valor and Evvie

Patriot is a bright, clear cobalt blue creme, and again I needed three coats.


Wow, a real eye-catcher!  Despite the fact that I own a truckload of blue polishes, I don’t have a dupe in my stash.  The closest is Blue Eyed Girl from Rimmel, but it’s grayer and not nearly as bright and clear.

Patriot and Blue Eyed Girl

The third color, Honor, is really gorgeous.  It’s a very fine foil, light gold and not too yellowish.  Two coats were enough, and here it is under indirect outdoor light and then with the flash:

Honor outd

Honor flash

So pretty!  Would look great at the beach or at a holiday party months from now.

I was a bit surprised to get another gold from SquareHue so soon, though.  We got a yellow-beige shimmer called Blond Ale in the March box, and the introductory box in December had a silver-gold foil/metallic called Champagne Toast.  For comparisons, I pulled these polishes plus Peterhof Palace (aka Ziv) from Zoya.  Left to right:  Peterhof Palace (Ziv), Blond Ale, Champagne Toast, and Honor:

4 golds

And in the same order on my nails.  Reflected outdoor light and then the flash:

4 golds outd

4 golds flash

As you can see, there are no dupes.  Blond Ale had a thin consistency and the color seems to disappear on my skin.  Champagne Toast and Honor are very similar in their fine foil look, but the former is more silver.  The Zoya color is a flakier foil and a darker gold.

Overall, I like the three July SquareHue colors a lot, but as I said last month, I’m ready for something new like a glitter or a holo or a duochrome.  I wanted to be wowed, and I wasn’t wowed.

Here’s the preview picture for the August box, the Endless Summer Collection.  I’m guessing warm, bronze-y, beach colors but don’t know that for a fact.

SqH EndlessSummer banner

Disclosure:  one polish in the comparison pictures was supplied by SquareHue.

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