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Saturday, March 17, 2012

Polish Round Up: the Greens

After my last post, I realized it wasn't fair not to give my other major green collection a little nod today. Nail polish! As I've said green is my colour... I mean take a look at my bedside table. You don't get much more green than that.

I love green nail polish. I've said (numerous times?) that I could seriously marry OPI Jade is the New Black. I love it that much. There is one more polish I just realized I left out of this little green love-fest: China Glaze It's Alive. Poor guy, left out of the fun. Click images for full size.

OPI Fresh Frog of Bel Air, OPI Jade is the New Black, OPI Zom Body to Love, OPI Gargantuan Green Grape, OPI Did it On Em

China Glaze Optical Illusion, China Glaze Mistletoe Kisses, China Glaze Holly-Day, China Glaze Jolly Holly, China Glaze Agro, China Glaze Four Leaf Clover, China Glaze Re-Fresh Mint

Julep Diane, Julep Leah, Nubar Reclaim, Zoya Gemma, Butter London Wallis, Milani Hi-Tech

KleanColor Green Grass, KleanColor Peaceful Heart, KleanColor Starry Meteor, Avon Electric Green, Sally Hansen Emerald City, MUA Shade 13

Nicole by OPI My Lifesaver, Cheeky Monkey Get Wet, Technic Moonlit Jade, Essie Turquoise and Caicos, Mark. Ibeza Sol Mojito

 Everybody got a little nap in before going back to the drawer. I'm an awesome polish parent.

Do you have a fave green polish you'll be sporting today?

*Bold font indicates a link to swatches*

Shadow Round Up: the Greens

I kind of wish every colour had it's own celebration day. Green, obviously has St. Patrick's Day (which I totally thought was yesterday...) so why can't other colours get some love too?

Oh well. I happen to love green, so it's all good. As you can see in the photo above, even my little swatch journal is green too. I use it to keep notes on products as I test them and swatch them. I'd be so lost without it. Today seemed like the perfect day to do a bit of colour inventory, so I went through my stash to see just how many green shadows I have. I did forget to add Urban Decay Bender, which is a really gorgeous shadow. I tend not to buy many individual eyeshadows any more, as palettes are just easier to store and use, so it is easy to forget a shade every now and then.

Wet n Wild "Cool as a Cucumber" Colour Icon Palette
I haven't used this palette in a while, but it does make a nice green look when paired with a neutral highlight shade. There are two greens in this palette, the first being a pale celery green, matte shade. This shade is a touch powdery and not as pigmented as other WnW shadows, but still applies easily. The second shade is a deep green with a slight velvet  finish.

Maybelline EyeStudio "Ivy Icon" Colour Pearls Marbelized Eyeshadow
I have a ton of these shadows, and up until not that long ago never used them. I found there was just too much fall out. Other than they were great. Then I had an "a-ha" moment and tried using them wet. Perfection! The solid side is a slightly dust green shimmer, while the marbleized side is a darker, golden olive shade.

Sula "Why Not?" Natural Creme Shadow
Sula is a Canadian brand that is relatively new to me, but I have gotten a few items and have been trying them out. Their cream shadows, unfortunately don't set, so they are prone to creasing, but a good primer helps them last about 4-6 hours. "Why Not?" is a pale golden toned medium green.

The Balm "Woman, Woman" (from Cast Your Shadow Face Palette)
I've started to notice a trend in which the best green shadows have a golden lean to them. "Woman, Woman" is no exception. This shade is a bit grassier than others, and has a gorgeous sheen.

Wet n Wild "Comfort Zone" Colour Icon Palette
This is becoming one of my favourite palettes. The quality is great and the shades are super wearable. This shade has two green(ish) shades, the first being the true green, a pale grass green and the second being the ish shade, as it leans green in the pan but is more of a sooty deep brown/black with olive shimmer.

Sleek "Storm" Palette
Another great palette, can you tell I really like my palettes? There is a great deep forest like green that lives in Storm. I love to use it in the crease on neutral campaign-ish looks for a bit of interest.

Avon "Celadon" Big Colour Eye Pencil
This is a combo pencil that can be used as liner or shadow. It acutally works best as a smudged liner as it does tend to crease as a shadow. The colour is a medium dusty kelly green.

L'Oreal "Permanent Kaki" Colour Infallible Eyeshadow
If you haven't tried these shadows, put down whatever you're doing and get a few. Now. They're great. Permanent Kaki is a dusty golden olive shade with a gorgeous shimmer.

1. Wet n Wild 'Cool as a Cucumber' 2. Maybelline 'Ivy Icon' Colour Pearls 3. Sula 'Why Not?' Creme Shadow 4. Sleek 'Storm'

1. Avon 'Celadon' Big Color Eye Pencil 2. L'Oreal 'Permanent Kaki' Colour Infallible 5. The Balm 'Woman, Woman' 4. Wet n Wild 'Comfort Zone' 5. Maybelline Eyestudio 'Green With Envy' Quad (not mentioned above... oops)

Do you have a favourite green eye shade that you'll be sporting today?

Friday, March 16, 2012

NOTD: Accidental St. Patrick's Day

Last week I got a massive haul of KleanColor nail polish. I found a seller on eBay who was selling 24 bottles for $27 with your choice of colours. Steal? I wasn't sure about the brand as I'd never used it, but there were some interesting glitters that looked too good to pass up. Obviously, I went for it and now have so many glitters I don't know where to start first.

The first glitter I went for is Starry Meteor (130) which has iridescent micro glitter, small, round, holographic green pieces and silver bar glitter in a sheer green base. While the base does have a bit of tint, you have to layer this, as you would never build to anything opaque enough to fully cover.

I layered Starry Meteor over OPI Gargantuan Green Grape for what ended up being a subtle St. Patrick's Day look. I'll be honest and admit that I totally forgot about St. Patrick's day... oooops!
Are you sporting green today?

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Swatched: China Glaze Hunger Games Collection

"May the odds be ever in your favour."

Are you sick of these yet? I must say, I think I've seen my fill of of this collection (blog wise). That is one thing that kind of irks me about the whole polish racquet. By the time us regular, non-press-sample receiving bloggers get our hands on a collection, it's old news and everyone has seen the swatches a thousand times over. Oh, well. You're seeing them again. That mini-rant aside, I do love this collection. I was not a Harry Potter freak ( I read the first book, saw two of the movies and that's it), nor have I been a fan of any other series (Lord of the Rings, Twilight.... whatever) but I do love me some Hunger Games. I read the books around the Christmas season not expecting to be blown away, but three days later and all three books finished, I was a convert.

 original polish names and inspirations, click for full size

 current shade names

If you've been following the collection since the beginning, you'll know that after the initial info was released there were licensing issues and the whole thing was almost scrapped. In the end, the polish shades stayed the same, but the names changed and each shade now represents one of the districts. Hunger Games fanatics will take note that there is no District 13 polish. They should have made it a base coat, you know? Since it's the underground/hidden district? Anyway...

True to China Glaze, the quality of these polishes are spot on. The creams are exactly what you want in your dream polish: creamy and opaque and almost perfect with one coat. Yes, one! None of these were 'problem' polishes. Even the colours I wasn't thinking I'd be into have found a space in my heart. Even the oranges... that's a pretty tough feat to accomplish.

Dress Me Up represents District 8 (textiles) and is a dusty, nude tinted rose colour. This colour was originally meant to named Primrose after the character in the books, which worked well as the soft colour matched her delicate nature.Two coats are shown.

Foie Gras represents District 10 (livestock) and is a dusty deep taupe shade. It's verging on almost being just a dusty brown with a slight purple lean, due to it's depth, so the taupe title is really just a matter of personal preference. Like all the creams in this collection, this shade was amazing to apply and pretty much perfect in one coat. I used two just for perfect coverage.

Fast Track represents District 6 (transportation) and is a cool beige packed with golden micro shimmer. I love this shade, it's definitely one of my favourites out of this collection. This shade was a bit thinner than the others and required three coats to be fully opaque.

Hook and Line represents District 4 (fishing) and is a metallic silver with a taupe lean. I was happy to see that this wasn't just another silver polish. The tint of taupe makes it much more unique. While two coats were all that I needed for this to be opaque, it is a bit of a streak-fest. If you carefully apply the second layer, and apply it as thin as possible, you can majorly reduce the number of streaks, but you won't get a perfectly smooth finish

Stone Cold- no top coat

Stone Cold- with top coat

Stone Cold represents District 2 (masonry) and is a concrete like glitter with a matte finish. The matte finish is unexpected, but makes total sense as it gives the polish a look like graphite or concrete. While one coat was all I needed with this polish, I did find that it didn't wear that well. It scratched easily and looked really worn by the end of the day. When topped with a top coat, the shimmer glows through more, and scraping isn't an issue.

Smoke and Ashes represents District 12 (mining) and is a deep blue black packed with blue and teal micro glitter. The swatch does this shade no justice. In person, the shimmer glows from within and is so much more unique than it sounds. As you can see from when I removed it, there is plenty of shimmer hidden in this polish.

Agro represents District 11 (agriculture) and is an olive hued metallic green with ultra fine gold shimmer. Unfortunately this doesn't apply as a foil, and can be prone to brush strokes if you don't take some care. Other than that, the formula is nice, two coats for full opacity. I love this shade.

Mahogany Magic represents District 7 (lumber) and is a yellow toned brown. I didn't think that I would like this shade at all, but it does have a chocolatey look, and is super glossy (almost jelly like) that I've started to like it. The formula of this shade is perfection and almost a one coater. The above picture is one coat, but you can see a small bald spot on the middle finger.

Harvest Moon represents District 9 (grain) and is a metallic copper. This isn't your average copper, but a more burnt shade. This shade has a foil finish giving it a smooth finish with no brush strokes to be seen.

Riveting represents District 3 (technology) and is a bright orange with fiery golden micro shimmer. I'm not too into oranges, but this polish is so vivid it is hard not to like it. The formula is great, almost like a jelly, and super shiny when dry.

Electrify represents District 5 (power) and is a full glitter. Gold and red glitter packed in a clear base. This applied easier than I expected, as it only really needs two coats to be opaque. I would still use this over  a base polish (red, probably.) This polish was a bit thick and gluey, but nothing out of the ordinary for a glitter.

Luxe and Lush represents the Capital (District 1- Luxury/Government) and is a chunky flakie. This is a bit different than your average flakie, as it is large flakes that are more like glitter. They don't lay as flat on the nail and have a bit of texture, so you'll want a good top coat to smooth everything out. I layered it over Dress Me Up in the photo above.

Overall, I'm quite happy with this collection. It will likely be that last full collection I pick up as I've filled my polish drawer and have 30+ bottles that are currently homeless. My top picks from this collection are Agro, Smoke and Ashes, Fast Track and Dress Me Up. Will you be buying any of these polishes? 

Saturday, March 10, 2012

"She’s sending virtual livestock to random men on the internet"

I love The Big Bang Theory. The episode that happens to have one of my top 10 Sheldon quotes is on right now (season 2, episode 9 "The White Asparagus Triangulation".)

Swatching the China Glaze Hunger Games Collection (looove Fast Track, haven't gotten too far yet. Still 8 to go) and watching TBBT. A lazy night in, but totally enjoyable. I'm getting old.....

 'baaaah!" source

Hopefully someone gets this...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Perfect Couple: Revlon Whimsical & China Glaze Sea Spray

Oh, the glorious dupe. It can be a wonderful thing...

Unless the dupe becomes just as popular as the dupee. I had the hardest time finding Revlon Whimsical. Actually, I gave up and had a friend of a friend who travels to the US keep an eye out for it in her travels. She was awesome enough to not only find it, but also bring one back to Canada for me. In case you've lived under a rock and have no clue as to what I'm rambling about (you most likely are used to my ramblings if you've read this far...) Revlon Whimsical is a spot on dupe of Deborah Lippmann's Glitter in the Air.

But, before we get to the goodness of Whimsical, we have the little matter of a base colour. You see, Whimisical has a sheer, milky blue base. Nail line is most def going show through. In comes the perfect couple part of this post: China Glaze Sea Spray.

China Glaze Sea Spray

Sea Spray is a pale icy blue with an almost dusty quality to it. It has a light shimmer, almost like a pearl finish, but with the finest texture. Two coats to perfect and easy to apply.

Revlon Whimsical over China Glaze Sea Spray

Revlon Whimsical over China Glaze Sea Spray

 Revlon Whimsical over China Glaze Sea Spray

Whimsical has a sheer milky base that is home to small silver glitter and medium sized pink and blue hexagonal glitter. The glitter floats around in the base, creating a dreamy layered effect. Sea Spray is a perfect match, as it sets the stage for Whimsical and disappears into the background.

                                        Revlon Whimsical over China Glaze Something Sweet = Sweet Whimsy

The pink glitter in Whimsical made me wonder what it would look like over a pale pink base. I went directly to my favourite pink polish, China Glaze Something Sweet to test it out. While I don't love it as much as the Sea Spray combo, it isn't without it's charms. Which combo do you like best? Have you been able to snag a bottle of Whimsical?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Swatched: Avon Colour Rich Spring Lipsticks

Did you know Avon makes an amazing lipstick?

It's totally true. They do! BUT, I find it can be hard to determine what finish you are going to get. Creams are very hard to come by, but boy do they deliver. The majority of their lipsticks have a varying degree of shimmer. Sometimes you get a beautifully glowing shade, other times it's a 1982 frost fest. It's a risk I usually take because if you buy these babies on sale they can dip as low as $2.99.

All that said, when I saw the four new shades being introduced for with the spring collection, I decided I might as well give them all a spin. While none of these are creams, they all fall into the beautifully glowing category. The finish of these lipsticks is sheer, but with a nice wash of colour. They remind me of MAC's glaze finish, as they have some shine, are sheer, and wear so easily. These would be great for anyone who wants some shine but isn't into gloss or anyone who isn't into the dryness of opaque lipstick.

Avon Colour Rich Lipstick in Nude and Infused, Apricot Mystery, Purple Hazed and Perplexed Purple

Avon Colour Rich Lipstick in Nude and Infused, Apricot Mystery, Purple Hazed and Perplexed Purple

Avon Colour Rich Lipstick in Nude and Infused, Apricot Mystery, Purple Hazed and Perplexed Purple

Avon Colour Rich Lipstick in Nude and Infused

Nude and Infused is a sheer nude with peachy undertones that has a fine gold/copper shimmer. I was nervous about this one, but on the lips it looks great and doesn't lean frosty at all. This will be a great shade to slick on quickly in the summer.

 Avon Colour Rich Lipstick in Apricot Mystery

Apricot Mystery is a sheer coral hued pink with a hint of golden shimmer. The shimmer doesn't really translate when worn on the lip so no frost issues here. The colour looks quite intimidating in the tube, but it is a very pretty, and wearable shade on the lips. Again, this will be a great colour for summer.

 Avon Colour Rich Lipstick in Purple Hazed

Purple Hazed is a sheer lavender shade with iridescent shimmer. This was the shade that initially caught my eye, as I'm always on the hunt for another great purple lip colour. The sheerness of this makes it read as more of a pinky purple, since my lip colour shows through, but there is still a hint of lavender. The shade is quite similar to MAC Pervette.

 Avon Colour Rich Lipstick in Perplexed Purple

Perplexed Purple is a sheer medium purple with golden shimmer. The shimmer doesn't stand out much when on the lips, which I am quite happy about, as the shimmer looks kind of extreme in the tube. The shade is a bit deeper than I would have figured from a fall collection, but it doesn't wear as dark as you would assume based on the colour in the tube. 

Avon Colour Rich Lipstick in Purple Hazed v.s MAC Pervette (Glaze)

Avon Colour Rich Lipstick in Purple Hazed v.s MAC Pervette (Glaze)

As I mentioned Purple Hazed is quite similar to MAC Pervette. Purple Hazed is a bit darker in the tube as is the swatch. On the lips you can see that Purple Hazed is just a touch darker, and that it has far less shimmer than Pervette. They aren't dupes, but they are quite close. I'd say you really don't need them both.

Overall, I'm quite happy with these and will get quite a lot of wear out of them. Do you have a favourite Avon lipstick?