Tag Archives: swatch


No, I’m not talking about today’s Black Friday stampedes.  I’m skipping that brouhaha again this year and am more into Small Business Saturday and CyberMonday.

Untamed is a relatively new polish from Revlon and comes in the old style “bell” bottle.  It’s rather complex — at first I thought it was brown but found it to be a blackened base full of gold and dark pink shimmer, along with some larger, irregularly-shaped pieces of gold glitter.  Together, those colors give a plummy bronze look.

My bottle of Untamed had horribly thick polish that was very difficult to use.  Since I’ve never had a problem with Revlon in the years I’ve been using the brand, I suspect my bottle was opened in the store and not closed properly.  Some thinning drops, which I always keep on hand, will fix that.

I picked up Untamed at Ulta, where it was $5.99 but there was either a BOGO sale or BOGOHO sale going on so I got it for less.  Revlon is of course widely available at big box stores, drugstores, and probably your local bar ‘n’ grill; it’s that popular.  The bottle is full-sized and contains 0.5 oz/14.7 mL.

Two coats covered very well although I had the thickness problem mentioned above.  Under very gloomy outdoor light and then with the flash:

Untamed outd

(Sorry that’s blurry; the light really is dim today.)

Untamed flash

You can see that with the flash it appears darker and more brown compared to the daylight view, where I see more pink and gold.

I decided to mattify Untamed for comparison.  Here it is on my ring and little fingers (two right-most) with two coats of Butter London Matte Top Coat.

Untamed w 2 matte outd

I think I like it mattified better.  Gives it kind of a leather look, in a good way.

Have a great weekend!

Another Mineral Fusion — Amethyst

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!

The last of the autumn leaves

It’s that time of year — sunny days of autumn, complete with blue skies and bright leaves, are in the rear view mirror, and winter is saying, “Hey, remember me?”  I’m less about light jackets and more about heavy coats.  And of course, seasonal polish.  The holiday collections are calling to me but I can’t quite say goodbye to my favorite fall colors just yet.

Look here, a new-to-me brand!  Mineral Fusion is a brand that, while not exclusive to Ulta, I’ve only seen at that store.  Previously I always walked by the display without really seeing it, but a few weeks ago a big “SALE!” tag caught my eye, and I browsed the brand for the first time.

Mineral Fusion polish comes in an ovoid bottle with a tapering oval handle.  It’s not what I’d call full-size but neither is it a mini.  Each bottle contains 0.33 oz/10 mL, and the SRP is $7.99.  With the sale and a coupon, I got mine for about $4.25 each.  Mineral Fusion is 100% vegan and is 4-free; that is, free of formaldehyde, camphor, DBP, and toluene.  Here’s one of the two colors I bought, Brownstone.

Brownstone bottle

Brownstone looks copper-bronze in the bottle and I got a nice surprise when I found it looks different on my nails!  Because after I brought it home I thought, shoot, I have enough coppers.  A little buyer’s remorse, doncha know.

The brush stem and brush are good size, the oval handle is surprisingly comfortable, and the brush holds a lot of polish, almost too much for my newly-shortened nails.  Polish smell was average as was dry time.  The first coat was sheer and patchy and showed obvious tip shrinkage, but the second coat covered well.  No visible brushstrokes.

My pleasant surprise was that Brownstone is a lovely shade of dark red-brown on my nails.  Under indirect outdoor sunshine and then with the flash, dig it:

Brownstone outd

Brownstone flash

I just love this color.  Doesn’t make my skin look weirdly colored, although perhaps a bit pale.  If you did want more of a copper color, MF has one called Pretty Penny that might fit the bill.

I’d buy more Mineral Fusion polishes but probably not at full SRP, considering the smallish bottle size.  But next time they’re on sale, and armed with a handy Ulta coupon, I want to try Azurite and perhaps a berry or pink shade.  The other color I bought is the purple Amethyst — want to see it?

Cosmo with a Twist

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.

I’m Trifling with you

Trifle — it’s a rich dessert (Google images of “English trifle dessert” and gain virtual weight with me).  It can mean something of little value or something small.  It can be a verb, meaning to treat someone or something with little or no respect.

But it’s a polish too, one from Butter London.  And since they go with Brit-speak I’ll guess they mean the dessert.  Maybe one like this:

Chocolate Trifle

Photo via Taste of Home.  Recipe HERE.  You’ll want a special trifle bowl.

Trifle the polish is on BL’s web site but is listed as “On Holiday” which is a nice way of saying out of stock or discontinued, don’t know which.  It came out in the Spring 2014 Collection called Boho Rock, and I kept meaning to get it but when I remembered to look for it in person, it was sold out.  Then I frankly forgot about it.  And since BL’s price increase to $15 per 0.4 oz/11 ml bottle, I rarely buy their products any more.

One of The Silver Nail’s readers to the rescue!  Someone — and I’m sorry I can’t remember your name, feel free to jump-start my memory — commented that discount stores TJMaxx and/or Ross sometimes have BL polishes at great savings.  Lo and behold the last time I went to TJMaxx I checked, and sure enough, there were a handful of BL colors at $4.99 each.  They had one bottle of Trifle and I snatched it.

Trifle is a golden bronze metallic shimmer in a plum base.  Really beautiful for fall.  It applied well, with an average polish smell, and I needed three coats.  Brushstrokes were slightly problematic but not terrible.  Here under indirect cloudy outdoor light and with the flash, no top coat.  There is just one coat of Trifle on my little (right-most) finger so you can see the plum base.

Trifle outd

Trifle flash

Trifle begs comparison to BL’s own Brown Sugar, which is also a bronze in a plum base.  Brown Sugar, though, is more glittery and pink-toned.  Same lighting with Brown Sugar on my index (left-most) finger.

Trifle w BrSug outd

Trifle w BrSug flash

Butter London really does brown polishes well.  Scuppered, as I’ve mentioned tirelessly, is one of my favorite browns ever.  The glints of green and pink are unexpected and so pretty.  Unfortunately, Scuppered is loooong gone.  Here are my BL bronzes and browns; click on the photo for a larger view.

BL browns

Hmmm, I may have a slight hoarding problem….

Winter 2015 Matte Velvets from Zoya – Part 3

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.

Winter 2015 Matte Velvets from Zoya – Part 2

Disclosure:  These polishes were provided by Zoya for review.

Hope you saw the first part of my review of the new Matte Velvet polishes yesterday.  I hesitate to call it Part 1 since I only showed one of the polishes.  Let’s call it Part 0.5.

Today let’s look at a few more, plus some comparisons.  To review, here’s the set:

MV15 bottles

Left to right, with Zoya’s color descriptions:

  • Aspen – a sparkling arctic white with a micronized diamond pearl fleck
  • Sue – a soft champagne gold with a multi-hued oyster shell pearl fleck
  • Amal – a classic crimson red with a ruby red pearl fleck
  • Honor – a true emerald green with a tone-on-tone emerald pearl fleck
  • Yves – a deep sapphire that’s midway between indigo and royal blue with a blue pearl fleck
  • Iris – a deep amethyst with a fuchsia pearl fleck

After swatching Sue yesterday and being surprised at how light it was, I was looking forward to swatching the lightest and whitest, Aspen.  Lookie here, it’s snow in a bottle.  It applied very smoothly and despite its being white, I needed three coats, not four coats as I did yesterday and again today with Sue.  Under indirect outdoor light:

MV15 Aspen outd

I took a photo of it under the flash but it looked too washed out to post.  Usually I’m not big on pure white polishes, finding them too stark and too White-Out®-looking, but I love Aspen.  It looks so wintry and Christmas-y.  You could do some great nail art with it.

Sue on the left with two nails of Aspen, first matte with the bottle of Sue, then with a clear shiny top coat and the bottle of Aspen:

MV15 Aspen w Sue outd

MV15 Aspen w Sue top coat outd

Funny how I thought I’d love Sue more but it’s def Aspen for me!  Even compared to the pure snow white of Aspen, you can see that my Sue doesn’t look nearly as “champagne gold” as it does in Zoya’s promo pictures.  Perhaps I got an “off” bottle, which is a possibility when I also consider how unusually thin and sheer its formula was.

Moving on to a color that has no close relative in Zoya’s previous Matte Velvets (magenta, red, green, purple, dark gray, and black), let’s see Yves, the blue.  Fantastic formula and a mere two coats gave great coverage.  Remember, with mattes, several thin coats are much better than heavy ones — you want them to dry evenly and quickly for a better matte finish.  Under indirect outdoor light and then with the flash:

MV15 Yves outd

MV15 Yves flash

GORGEOUS!  I’m in love.  Zoya’s description of being between royal blue and indigo is spot on.  With a clear top coat:

MV15 Yves top coat outd

MV15 Yves top coat flash

I prefer Yves matte — looks more special, somehow.  Maybe ’cause I already have a boatload of shiny blue polishes.

Now let’s ponder the red Amal.  Again, very good formula and two coats were enough to cover well.  Indirect outdoor light and flash:

MV15 Amal outd

MV15 Amal flash

I thought in the bottle that it looked quite close to Posh.

MV15 Amal n Posh bottles

Uh, yeah… ya think?!?  Actually they are very close but are not complete dupes.  Amal is a bit lighter and is more of a true red or candy apple red.  Posh has a cool berry tone. Here is Posh on the left with two nails of Amal, flash:

MV15 Amal w Posh flash

With a clear shiny top coat they look even more similar:

MV15 Amal w Posh top coat flash

Both have a good formula and I can’t recommend one over the other; they’re both beautiful.  If you have Posh, are happy with it, and money is tight, the world will not end if you don’t buy Amal too.  However, if you want a beautiful matte red and never got Posh (it’s now discontinued, judging from Zoya’s site), I highly recommend Amal.  Maybe you go through red polish like nobody’s business around the holidays and want both!

Tomorrow I’ll finish up the set with the green Honor and the purple Iris.  Plus comparisons to Veruschka, Harlow, and Savita.

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.

Disclosure:  These polishes were provided by Zoya for review.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,232 other followers

%d bloggers like this: