Tag Archives: red

Let’s Chunky Dunk some more

A few weeks ago I saw a four-piece set of chubby lip crayons from Nyx Cosmetics at the local Ulta.  Since I really liked the one Chunky Dunk Nyx lip crayon I’ve tried, Rum Punch, and have become enamored of lip crayons in general, I was tempted.  But I put it back and decided to think about it.

Nyx chunky set

I searched out swatches and decided that yes, worth buying.  The full name of the set is Chunky Dunk Hydrating Lippie 4 Piece Collection XOXO and it’s $14.99 in-store and online, and you can use Ulta’s coupons on it since Nyx is not a prestige brand.  With each Nyx lip crayon now having an SRP of about $6.50, a set of four full-sized ones for$14.99 works out to $3.75 each.  I was able to use a 20% off coupon which brought the price down to a fantastic $3.00 each.

The set has a good color variety; it’s not all pinks or all reds.  There’s a pink, a red, a nude/beige, and a warm brown.  All the Chunky Dunk crayons are named after drinks and these are:

  • Pink Bikini
  • Cherry Smash
  • Hibiscus Tea Punch
  • Caramel Martini

Nyx chunky set2

Nyx chunky set3

In some lights Caramel Martini looks purplish but it really isn’t.

As I’ve mentioned before, I love that these twist up and don’t require sharpening.  Trying to sharpen soft makeup crayons can bring me to tears.  Can you say, “What a mess, what a waste!”???

Here are some quick swatches on my inner arm, under indirect outdoor light and then with the flash.

Nyx chunky swatch outd

Nyx chunky swatch flash

In the second swatch picture, the two darker colors appear to settle into the fine lines, but I don’t see that at all on my lips which are much darker/redder than my very pale inner arm skin.

On my lips these feel very light and moisturizing, not dry at all, with no scent or taste.  These are basically gloss crayons and are not heavy opaque lipsticks.  They’re for when you want a sheer wash of color that’s not drying.  Can’t wait to wear Caramel Martini with some fall sweaters!

Matte Rouge — new collection from Color Club

Well, this is intriguing — an all-matte seven-polish set from Color Club called Matte Rouge.

You’d guess from the name that all the shades are red or reddish, wouldn’t you?  Here’s a pic of the bottles from Color Club’s web site, where each one costs $8.50.

CC Matte Rouge

I find the official photos at CC’s site to be less than accurate when it comes to the real color of the polish.  For what I suspect is a better look, check out this Instagram picture from Ink361.  Whoa.  Much more vibrant!  I know lighting can vary, and so on, but this shot is IMO better for gauging the colors.

If you’re interested, this set is out now, and Head2ToeBeauty has it for $3.50 per polish.  I’ve ordered from H2TB in the past and been very pleased, no affiliation.

Essie Winter 2015 Collection preview

Hello all.  Still living under a heavy pall of wildfire smoke, which is no tragedy but which means I have zero energy.  Honestly, as soon as I wake up in the morning I want to go back to sleep.  We had one clear night and morning recently (last Saturday morning) and I felt like a new person that day.

Anyhoo, I’m dragging myself around and don’t even have the energy to swatch.  Typing seems to be about my limit.  So howzabout some news?

Pictures of Essie’s Winter/Holiday 2015 set have been blowing around on the internet for about a month but I didn’t feel like talking about them until now.  So here we go.

The set is called Virgin Snow and looks comme ça:

Essie Virgin Snow display

I see what you did with the sexual innuendo there, Essie.

Essie Virgin Snow

Very, um, winter-into-spring-ish.  But not, I’d say, particularly exciting.  Two reds so close to each other in the same collection?  Yeah, I’ve seen that before; doesn’t mean I like it.  Can’t really tell if the last one is strictly dark gray or partly another color, like the recent fall shade Frock ‘n Roll, which I did like a lot.

The colors are:

  • Virgin Snow
  • Après Chic
  • Peak Snow
  • Altitude Attitude
  • Shall We Chalet?
  • Haute Tub

There will be a mini set, too.

Essie Virgin Snow minis

No release date known yet.  Photos via Instagram and Pinterest.

Name that Zoya!

Official news release from Zoya:

Zoya name contest

Have you ever dreamed of naming a Zoya Color? This is your big chance to join in on the color naming fun… Zoya Creative Director, Rebecca Isa has created 3 gorgeous, new colors for Redbook and the magazine is running a naming contest for them in the September 15 Issue (page 60).

The colors are:

·         Creamy Cherry Red

·         Metallic Plum

·         Sheer Sparkly Gold

Zoya name contest4

As you may know, Zoya names all of our colors after women – so submit your Mom or Bestie or Idol or even your own name to maybe become the next new Zoya!

ENTRY FORM: http://redbook.hearstmobile.com/sweepstakes/31602

CONTEST RULES: http://www.redbookmag.com/sweepstakes/rules/a39228/september-2015-contest-official-rules-5-beauty-tricks-i-just-learned-zoya-contest/


Zoya name contest2

Zoya name contest3

After the winning names are selected by the Redbook team, the colors will be available through December on Zoya.com as a full size (0.5 oz) trio – $27 (US) and as individual colors in salons and ULTA stores – $9 ea. (US).


Fun!  READ THE CONTEST RULES!!!  The rule that jumps out at me is ONE ENTRY PER PERSON.

Would I like to win?  Sure.  But what I’d love even more would be for one of my readers to win.  So here’s a possible tip (and I have no idea if it would actually help or not) — pick a name that Zoya hasn’t ever used.  If you need a list of most of the known Zoya names, I check this one at The Polish Garden.  Don’t know if it includes every name EVAH, but it’s a good start.

Be creative yet sensible.  Don’t name it after yourself with the reasoning that you’re a selfish beeyotch.  Somehow, I doubt that would resonate with the judges.


Comparisons for the Focus Collection from Zoya

Disclosure:  The Focus Collection polishes and some comparison polishes were provided by Zoya for review.

Warning, I’m going super-lazy today with my comparisons.  My nails and cuticles need a rest from all the polish and remover I’ve been subjecting them to in the last few days so I’m using swatch sticks.  And fewer photos.  Here’s my full review of Focus if you need a refresher.

Before I get to the Focus Collection comps, though, two reader suggestions regarding the Flair set.  Click on any of the following photos for bigger views.

Flair comp7

Jinx is an older discontinued metallic from Zoya, and it’s lighter and more coppery than the new Cinnamon.

Flair comp8

Had to photograph these two at more of an angle because the bright blue shimmer confuses my camera.  Tallulah is lighter and brighter than Estelle.

Moving on to Focus, first of all I have no other Zoyas like Charli for comparison… to which I say “Thank goodness.”  I reallyreallyreally did not like that color.

I got out several older red cremes and am putting three older ones in between the new Hannah and Janel.

Focus comp1

Hannah and Sooki are practically duplicates.  Livingston and Stella are darker than Hannah but lighter than Janel.

The blue one, Sia:

Focus comp2

Sia is darker than Ling from the 2014 summer set called Tickled.

For the purple Lidia, I had almost nothing from Zoya to compare.  I don’t own Pinta but I did dig up Casey.

Focus comp3

Both are so dark that it’s difficult to see a difference.  Casey’s formula was thinner, though, and let’s look at the bottles.

Focus comp6

Well, that didn’t help much!  They’re near-dupes although Lidia’s formula is thicker and IMO better.  If you already have and like Casey I’d say you don’t need Lidia.  HOWEVER, if you look at the two on Zoya’s site, Casey is more red-toned than Lidia.  I didn’t see it in person myself; both are so dark and inky, in a good way.

Similarly, it’s hard to see a difference between the new brown Desiree and the older Louise.

Focus comp4

Focus comp5

Louise is more warm-toned and Desiree is slightly gray-toned.  Not a huge difference though.  I no longer own the brown Emilia, but that was much grayer than Louise.  Here’s my old photo under much different lighting:

Zoya Nat2 comp4

I wasn’t wowed by the Focus Collection but if you want to fill in some holes in your creme polish collection or need to replace some old colors, there ya go.

Don’t forget that Zoya announced mini sets of both the Flair and Focus Collections.  Each mini sampler is $30 and includes a free Mini Color Lock System and free shipping.

Zoya Flair Focus mini sets

Disclosure:  The Focus Collection polishes and some comparison polishes were provided by Zoya for review.

Comparisons for the Flair Collection from Zoya

Disclosure:  The Flair Collection polishes and some comparison polishes were provided by Zoya for review.

Hope you enjoyed my Flair review the other day.  Time for comps (on my newly-cut nails)!

Flair bottles

To recap, the new shimmery colors are:

Tris (ZP813) – blackened brushed nickel
Cinnamon (ZP812) – classic bronze
Aggie (ZP811) – gold liquid metal with bronze microglitter
Ember (ZP810) – fiery red
Giada (ZP809) – purple with a hint of fuchsia pearl
Estelle (ZP808) – blue liquid metal with a blackened base

Zoya’s had several dark shimmery grays in recent years:  Freja, Cassedy, Claudine, and Yuna.  I’ve never owned Freja and I did have Cassedy but gave it away.  Here is Tris compared to Yuna and Claudine.

Flair comp5

No dupes.  Claudine is neutral and was a one-coater.  Tris required three coats and like the other day, brushstrokes were a bother.  Yuna has gold flecks that, when seen against the dark gray, give it a greenish tint.  Cassedy was also greenish and I don’t care for that in a gray polish.  For more gray comps without Tris, see this older post, especially the pictures submitted by a guest reader at the end.  Very helpful!

I have nothing really close to Cinnamon in my Zoya stash.  Here’s Cinnamon along with Kalista and Cheryl, but you can see even without swatching that Cinnamon is lighter and more bronze, while the other two are darker.  Kalista has a plum tone and is still available at Zoya’s web site but Cheryl is discontinued.

Flair comp3

Aggie is also unique.  Here it is next to Ziv but they aren’t that similar.  Ziv is a straight-up light gold metallic/foil and Aggie is a multichrome with copper and green shifts.  My full review the other day showed Aggie at more angles.

Flair comp1

Ember has a slight orange tone that makes it different from true reds.  I don’t have Elisa for comparison but do have the maddeningly similarly named Lisa, along with a reader request of Knees Up from Butter London.  Both Lisa and Knees Up are darker and more cool-toned, and the latter is more glittery.

Flair comp2

I had lots of shimmery purples to pull for comparison with Giada.  While I don’t own 2012’s Suri, I do have Belinda, Hope, and Juno.

Flair comp6

Whoa.  Hope and Juno are obviously much more pink and frankly I wonder why I have both of them!  Belinda is more blue-toned than Giada and also has slight pink sparkles.  Giada seems like more of a straight purple, but again, I don’t have Suri to compare it to but feel other bloggers will do that.

Estelle just begs to be shown next to the very popular Song, also from 2012.

Flair comp4

Song is darker but is a sweet one-coater.  As you can see, Estelle is slightly lighter, and I used two coats.

Hope these pics help you to make buying decisions.  I feel Cinnamon and Aggie are unique in Zoya’s lineup, still love Ember, still don’t care for Tris, and like Giada more than I did the other day.  Estelle is a very pretty polish but I personally prefer Song.

Worth noting is that today Zoya announced mini sets of both the Flair and Focus Collections.  Each set of six minis is $30, which is slightly more expensive than buying three full-sized polishes, but you gotta remember that for any company, a lot of the cost is in the packaging.  And with either mini set, you get a free Mini Color Lock System and free shipping.  Maybe go in with a friend or relative and split the cost and polishes!

Zoya Flair Focus mini sets

Disclosure:  The Flair Collection polishes and some comparison polishes were provided by Zoya for review.

The Focus Collection from Zoya — full review

Disclosure:  These polishes were provided by Zoya for review.

I had fun swatching the shimmery Flair Collection yesterday.  Today, let’s Focus!


Charli (ZP807) – dusty taupe with a hint of green
Desiree (ZP806) – classic sable brown
Hannah (ZP805) – clear, classic red
Janel (ZP804) – deep warm red
Lidia (ZP803) – rich eggplant
Sia (ZP802) – true royal blue

All the Focus polishes are cremes.  Unless otherwise noted, all swatches are under indirect smoky outdoor light and are two coats, no top coat.

Focus bottles

Let’s get Charli out of the way first.  I’m guessing this grayish-brownish-greenish shade is considered stylish, but it’s not my style.  With apologies to Dr. Suess, I do not like it in a house.  I do not like it with a mouse.  I do not like it here or there.  I do not like it anywhere.

Focus Charli

It had a good, smooth formula, and I think if you worked in an office it could be a trendy neutral.  Bonus:  covered well in one thick coat!

Desiree is, as the description says, a sable brown.  Lovely.  Not bronze-toned, it has a slight grayish tint but is not overly grayed.

Focus Desiree

Hannah?  Bright medium red, clear and slightly warm-toned.  Excellent formula and almost but not quite a one-coater.

Focus Hannah

Janel is a brick red that doesn’t lean orange and it’s not muddy.

Focus Janel

Deep eggplant purple describes Lidia well.  It’s not blue-toned, and if I had to say it leaned a certain way I’d say slightly red or, more accurately, plum.

Focus Giada

Ooh, love it.  Dark.  Mysterious.  Inky.

Sia is a bright royal blue, and Zoya particularly warns about staining with this polish, so be sure to use a good base coat.  Blues seem especially prone to staining.

Focus Sia

Sia is such a bright blue that I think it makes my skin look yellowish.  Too bad, because it’s another one in the collection that was almost a one-coater.  Looks more summery than autumnal to me.

My favorite is the purple Lidia, and I also like Desiree and Janel a lot.  The two reds, Hannah and Janel, are pretty but not unique.  I really wish Zoya didn’t have two reds so close in color to each other in the same collection.  Couldn’t one of them have been much darker or persimmon red?  All six cremes had an excellent formula, very smooth and glossy.

Usually I take weekends off from blogging but I’m going to try to post lots of comparisons in the next few days, the new Zoyas to old Zoyas.  I don’t have every shade the company ever made, but I’ll do my best!

ZOYA IS THE HEALTHY COLOR OF FASHION!  The Focus and Flair Collections are shipping NOW!

$9 (US) Available on Zoya.com and at finer salons and spas.

*BIG5FREE: Formula contains no formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, dibutyl phthalate, toluene, or camphor, and is vegan-friendly.

Disclosure:  These polishes were provided by Zoya for review.


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