Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Hello Kitty Turquise

Up today is one of the lovely Hello Kitty that arrived in the package from the lovely Felizarine from Alizarine’s Claws, you can see the rest of that package here.

Hello Kitty Turquise is as the name suggests a lovely turquoise coloured polish, it has an almost imperctible shimmer to it. Even as I look at the polish, I know there is glitter in it and I can hardly make it out, but it lends an extra depth to the polish. I’ve included a blown up picture of the bottle to show the glitter.

Now on the nails, 
Natural light, no flash.

Natural light, flash

I had planned to take more pictures of this but I managed to chip the mani after a couple of hours.  Application was great these pictures are two coats. The wear wasn’t great as I’ve mentioned I managed to get a chip less than 12 hours after I applied it and I was asleep for many of those hours!

As I said,this polish was part of the package I received from Felizarine for winning her giveaway, so I’m not sure of the price. The bottle is bigger ( 16 ml) than the normal H&M polishes (9ml) so I don’t know if that makes it more expensive. I'm pretty sure the normal H&M polishes retail at €4.50.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Topshop Gypsy Night

So I celebrated a birthday recently and among all the other lovely presents I received, little sis bought me some nail varnish. One Topshop polish and two Essence from the Return to Paradise collection.

From L-R Topshop Gypsy Night, Essence Back to Paradise and Essence Jungle Drum. 

They are all beautiful, little sis  has great taste! But the minute, I saw the Topshop polish I knew that was my next mani. It didn’t disappoint.  This is my first Topshop polish in since I was about 14, I remember going to London and coming back with the most amazing aubergine colour Topshop polish and wearing it all the time.  

While I was wearing this I couldn’t keep my eyes off it, every time I glanced at it the colours it threw up were slightly different. I couldn't decide if the base was black or a had a brownish tint to it. There are flakies and glitter in the polish. In the bottle there are orange and green flashes from the flakies. I’m pretty sure these are what give the brownish tint to the base colour in the polish. The glitter then flashes every colour of the rainbow. I’ve included some out of focus pictures to give and idea of the colour of the glitters in the polish.

This picture shows the orange flakes on the ring finger and in the bottle, 

The out of focus pictures show more of the colours.

The one downside on this polish was the wear was quite rubbish, but the polish was so amazing I can live with that.  (There’s tipwear evident in the photos taken a few hours after I applied it.)  Since the polish was a present, I can’t be totally sure of the price but I think it was about €8, and the bottles hold 8ml. (The essence polishes pictured above are 10ml)

I’ll do a post soon on the other two polishes.  Comments as always are welcome! 

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Prudence Beauty Awards

On Thursday night, the Prudence Beauty Awards where held in the new (and very lovely looking) Gibson's hotel in Dublin. Your's truly couldn't go because work got in the way and I was going to treat myself to a stay in the lovely hotel too :( It looks like a great night was had by all. Prudence is a bimonthly Irish magazine, which as the name suggests centers on spending money wisely. I personally love Irish magazines mostly because items featured are *usually* easy enough to obtain. There's nothing worse than reading about something and thinking I want that, only to find it's impossible to get in Ireland.

The full list of winners are in the magazine released on the 1st September, but here's a peak at some of the winners. (Pictures and text from the press release)

Independently judged by a panel of industry experts, Prudence’s beauty awards are now in their second year and are dedicated to rewarding great beauty buys that perform for pocket-friendly prices. The awards also feature ‘splurges’ – more expensive treat buys which are worth the cost because of their high performance.

The Prudence Best Buy Beauty Awards will be published in a special handbag-sized booklet along with the September issue, in stores on September 1st.

Aldi's Lacura Face Care Double Lift Regeneration Cream (€6.99)won the Day and Night Creams category, beating off competition from established skincare brands like L’Oréal Paris, RoC and Bliss. A peptide, retinol and vitamin E mix convinced judges that this performance skincare product is a great buy for Irish women who are crying out for quality products that don’t break the bank.

nail polish remover
Irish brand L’Onglex, which cleaned up in the Hands and Nails category for its excellent Acetone-Free Nail Polish Remover, €3.67

sun cream

Penneys (Primark), which scored two gongs for its SPF30 Sun Lotion, €2.70, and Ta Ta for Now Concealer, €3, which judges said mimicked much more expensive brush concealers.

Want to know the rest of the winners? Well go get the magazine on the first of September, I know I will!

Have you tried any of these products? What do you think of them? What product would you vote as a winner in beauty awards? Let me know! 

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Things I'm loving and Things I'm not loving so much

And now for something a bit different...........

Things I’m loving

  • My new jacket. I knew the minute I started seeing all the aviator jackets coming through for AW I’d end up with one. Although I was trying to hold off on buying one I saw this and love ensued, less than 5 minutes later I was leaving the shop with the jacket (and minus the boots I’d actually gone in to buy!)

Source: River Island

  • Lovely soap and candles from the dolly tub. They do lovely candles in teacups, which are extremely pretty and lovely goats milk soaps. There’s pictures on their website although the website doesn’t seem to be working too well. http://www.thedollytub.com/index.html

  • All the lovely irish bloggers! They’ll either cost you money or make you hungry. Check out my blog roll. (I was going to make a list but was afraid I'd leave someone out!)

  • Books. I love reading, although I tend to read non-improving books, because I spend so much time reading for uni and it’s nice to switch off. (That’s my excuse anyway!)

Things I’m not loving quite so much

  • My ability to be swayed by pretty things, for example see jacket above!

  • My age, I *celebrated* a birthday recently and I’m now into the final year of my twenties!

  • My cuticles, are being extremely badly behaved, lately!

  • My inability (or maybe my camera's inability) to photograph blues and purples, true to life.

Is there anything you are loving (or not loving) at the moment? Well share it, don't keep it bottled up inside!

China Glaze For Audrey

Let me introduce you to the lovely China Glaze For Audrey. For Audrey ofen comes up when people mention their favourite polishes and is a lovely Tiffany blue, so when doing my last internet order it was one of the first that came to mind. Well, this one definitely didn’t disappoint, two coats of creamy loveliness!
Artificial light with Flash

There isn't much more to say other than I LOVE this polish! What’s more this colour didn't give me lovely red hands, which is always a bonus. This is two coats with a layer of Seche Vite.
Have you tried For Audrey? What do think?

Monday, August 23, 2010

Essence - All Access

Today is Essence All Access, a beautiful deep green, glass flecked polish. The polish is a lovely dark green, not so green that is appears black (OPI here today Aragon tomorrow, I’m looking at you!) and the glass fleck makes it appear ‘lit from within’. I’m gonna let the pictures speak for themselves with this one.

This two coats of polish with a coat of seche vite. I'm sorry about the rubbish pics of this, I never got one in natural light but I love this polish and even better this one was half price so cost me the grand total of ONE euro, in a random pharmacy. (If only I could get the pink sticker off). The wear was good on this I think I wore it for 5 days before I got a chip.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

ELF Desert Haze

Elf Desert Haze is another one of these nude polishes that I love, they are very work appropriate and when you’re in a hurry they are much easier to put on than some of the unforgiving darker colours.
Right for the picture, this is flash and artificial light.

I love the colour of this polish but I found the polish a complete and utter nightmare to apply, it seemed to lack the ‘self-levelling’ properties of most polishes and while a big thick layer of Seche Vite, over 3 coats of polish, helped it didn’t completely work! I haven’t had this issue with any of the other polishes that came in this order and I was in a hurry to go out as I was doing this mani, so I will try it again and see if application is any better.

But back to the colour of this polish, this sparked a lot of conversation over a couple of glasses of vino with my friends we decided, it’s a lovely cafe au lait type colour, with maybe a little bit of grey in it. It’s a little like OPI Tickle My France-y, but I think that's more peachy in colour. I’ll do a comparision soon.

So, do you know of a polish a similar colour without the application issues? Have you tried this, did I just get a dud bottle? 

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Orly Mirror Mirror V Collection 2000 Wham

Today a comparison between Orly Mirror Mirror and Collection 2000 Wham. Both polishes are light grey creams. Check out the cute Orly bottle with the little mirror charm, it's too cute!
First up a picture of the two bottles,

Looking at the bottle, you can see that the two polishes look similar.
Next up, on the nails. From L-R Mirror Mirror, Wham, Mirror Mirror and Wham.

On the nail Mirror Mirror looks a bit lighter than Wham. I like this colour, so I'm glad I have both but they are very close.
For these swatches, I did three coats of each polish and both polishes needed all three coats. There’s no top coat on these swatches. I love the handle of Orly’s polish it’s very easy to hold whereas the Collection 2000 handle is a pain to hold I think it’s not long enough. However I think I preferred the Collection 2000 brush.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Nubar 2010

Up today is Nubar 2010, this is a flaky polish in the vein of Gosh Rainbow, which must be sold out the length and breadth of Ireland! Not only is Nubar 2010 a dupe for Gosh Rainbow, it’s also a dupe to Sally Hansen Hidden Treasure which has all the American nail junkies on a hunt for elusive bottles!

First up a bottle pic,

I’m not quite sure if Nubar is trying to insult me or encourage to revert back to my previous sluttish state, but anyhow for best resluts! Right time to compose myself and get over my nail polish insulting me, didn’t it know I was never a slut, hence no need to reslut myself!

So when I had the skittles from the giveaway win post on, I thought this would be an ideal time to try out the Nubar 2010 and kept them on for an extra day to try and do the 2010 swatches. (I got some very strange looks at work!) Since I’m a little late to this party, I thought I it was an easy way to try it out on a wide range of colours.

Of course all day when I was in work with my multicoloured nails the weather was lovely and sunny and I knew this polish would need sunlight to photograph properly, on my way home the sun went in. The next day I had a meeting with my boss so it had to come off, but I held off to see if it would be sunny in the morning and just as I had remover in my hand, the sun came out for a brief minute so I got 2 not very good sunlight photos, so I’ve put a few photos in to try and capture the flakey goodness!

Artifical light, flash

No Flash, artifical light

Finally sunshine (through the window!) and no flash

Each of these is one coat of Nubar 2010 over the polish, I didn't apply topcoat as I didn't want to dull the flakies, it dried extremely quickly anyway. This was an absolute pain to photograph and I took over 150 photos of it and these were the best! When I use this again I'll try 2 coats of 2010 and find a sunny day!

I had heard about people loving this over pastel colours, I personally wasn't feeling it so much but I loved it over the darker colours, especially the Hello Kitty pink on my pinkie. Expect to see a few more colours 2010'd in the upcoming weeks while I decide if I love it or I'm just meh about it.

Have you any suggestions for good colours to try with 2010?

Friday, August 13, 2010

A Small Haul

Recently, I switched to an acetone remover from non-acetone and it was having an effect on my cuticles, so I decided that some cuticle remover was possibly in order and since I was doing an etailer order I thought I better through in a few other things to make in worth my while.  So here’s what arrived.

CND cuticle eraser, I’ve started to use this I’ll let you know more about this when I’ve used it for a little longer. China Glaze For Audrey, a lovely tiffany blue colour and my first two Nubars. Nubar 2010 is a dupe of the famous Gosh Rainbow (or if you are US based Sally Hansen Hidden Treasure) since I owned neither of the other two I thought that it was time to get my hands on it. Nubar Violet Sparkle is a purple glittery bottle of goodness.  I did a quick swatch of this when the package arrived and it’s fab but it’s going to be hell to take off so while I’m dying to wear this I’m also a bit hesitant! 

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A Great Start to the Weekend

So, last week I got an email from the lovely Felizarine from Alizarine’s Claws, informing me I had won her giveaway. Check out her fab blog here. Now, this was a surprise of the best kind not least because I'm known for never winning anything, so much so that everyone remembers (in my family at least) when I won a raffle in 6th class (when I was 11!) because it's the only thing I've ever won! So I did go a little mad doing the lotto and the like thinking lady luck had finally found me and I was about to make up for years of being mucho unlucky alas it was not to be! However, a couple of days later, this package arrived on my doorstep, completely erasing the pain of not winning the lotto!

I couldn’t believe how quickly it arrived, all the way from Sweden. There were 11 fab nail polishes, 2 eyeshadows and 2 lipsticks.6 of the polishes and the makeup were from a Swedish brand called Viva la Diva. When my sister saw the makeup she swiftly decided I wasn’t going to wear it (!) and it was much better in her hot little hands, before I had time to object she was gone. I’ll track her down and demand a review!

So on to the polishes there were 11 polishes in total and since I actually already owned the lovely blue my mind I thought I’d swatch the other 10 polishes. The Viva la Diva polishes had no names only numbers. I’ve put Blue my mind away for a giveaway in future.

On my left hand, I swatched these (From L-R) Viva La Diva 13-17

No flash, from Thumb to pinky Viva La Diva 13-17

Flash, from Thumb to pinky Viva La Diva 13-17

The formula of these was really really good for pastels only the yellow (17) and the peach(15) were 3 coaters. (actually I dinged the yellow and it became 4 coats)

On my right hand, from L-R Viva La Diva 18, H&M Bella’s Choice, H&M Check Me Out, Hello Kitty Turquise Kitty, Hello Kitty Pink Kitty.

No flash, from Thumb - Pinky, Viva La Diva 18, H&M Bella’s Choice, H&M Check Me Out, Hello Kitty Turquise Kitty, Hello Kitty Pink Kitty.

Flash, from Thumb - Pinky, Viva La Diva 18, H&M Bella’s Choice, H&M Check Me Out, Hello Kitty Turquise Kitty, Hello Kitty Pink Kitty.

I loved them but Bella’s Choice deserves special mention as it was a one coater, and the colour was very simlar to China Glaze For Audrey (more of which tomorrow). The rest of the polishes were 2 coaters. There’s a shimmer in the Turquise Kitty colour, which I managed to fall to capture in the bottle picture and both of the swatch pictures, I’ll do a full mani with this and try and get better pictures. Here I should mention that Turquise Kitty is H&M's name for the polish and not my appalling spelling!

I’d never heard of Viva La Diva before and have no idea if they are available outside Sweden, the polishes are very pigmented and some the nicer pastels I’ve used. I don't live near a H&M but will be making a trip to one soon to pick up some more of their polishes.

Have you seen the Viva La Diva range before, are there more products we should be trying? Also, has anyone got any other recommendations for any other H&M polishes?

Sunday, August 8, 2010

OPI Tickle My France-y

Today’s NOTD is OPI Tickle my France-y (TMF) from the OPI French Collection. Usually with OPI collections although they are limited edition, one or two make it in to the permanent collection. I believe You Don’t Know Jacques and TMF both have been made permanent.
TMF is totally a work appropriate polish and is completely my go to when I have to go to serious meetings and/or I’m going somewhere and need to polish in a hurry. I find it much easier to put a nude colour in a hurry, even if it’s a 3 coater.

A lot of the flash pictures pulled a bit pink, so while this isn't the best photo it's probably the most colour accurate.

The photos show 3 coats with a coat of seche vite on top. I literally threw this polish on while I was waiting for a taxi to arrive and while I had the forethought to have the money ready, I completely destroyed my right hand putting on my seat belt. (Well two nails but it bugged me the whole day although I know no one else noticed!)
Although I didn’t leave this on long I know the wear time on this is good from previous wears. For some people this would their mannequin hands colour (the colour that makes their nails the same colour as their hands) but on me this isn’t the best match for my skin colour but I still love it.
I have a few more nude polishes coming up, what's you favourite mannequin hands shade?

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Essie Chinchilly V Claire's Unknown

Firstly, apologies for leaving it so long between posts, I've not been well, but I have a good few posts coming up to make up for the gap! I hope everyone is having a good start to their weekends. Today I have a comparison post for you.

So a few months ago I was going to a wedding and had popped into town to pick the last few bits to go with my gúna (or dress for non-Irish speakers!), when I realised that *gasp* I had no polish to go with the dress, I happened to pass Claire’s and picked up this unknown polish. Anyhow I got home and realised it was very similar to Essie Chinchilly which I already owned, so I thought I’d do a comparison of the two for you.

First up some bottle pics,

In the bottle, the polishes look quite similar with the Claire's one looking maybe a little lighter.

Now I said this Claire’s polish was unknown because for the life of me I can not find a name, I know from US blogs that claire’s polishes have names there. So am I being stupid and just can’t see it or do the European polishes have no name?

Now on nails, from L-R Chinchilly, Claire’s, Chinchilly, Claire’s, first up no flash,

The Claire's picture looks a little lighter here but they are quite close. Now a flash picture,

The flash washes the colour out a bit but it's a bit easier to see the difference but they are close.

So the two polishes are very similar, the size of bottles is similar. The Claire’s polish sells for €3.50. I’ve worn Chinchilly and never had any problem with wear time but I’ve never worn the Claire’s polish so can’t comment. Although it’s highly unlikely that I’ll ever wear the Claire's polish as it smells really bad. The Essie brush was as all essie’s quite thin while the brush in Claire's was extremely thick and wasn’t ideal to polish with.

In the end I wore a completely different dress to the wedding and went for a mani, so ended up with OPI off with her red on my tips, which I’ve been meaning to buy ever since.

So have you used Claire's polish? Can you find the elusive name on the polish? Did I get a bad bottle of polish or do all Claire's polishes smell similar?