swatch: china glaze fortune teller

my halloween mani! i didn't have a costume this year, so i figured it was important that i at least wear a festive polish. this is one coat of (the absolutely amazing) illamasqua boosh, topped with two coats of fortune teller (which i believe is a sally's exclusive):

fortune teller features a number of different kinds of orange glitter (as far as i can tell, regular glitter, small hex glitter, and larger hex glitter) in a black jelly base. here's a closeup shot to better show the varying sizes of glitter in this polish:

also, i'm very tempted to get a backup of boosh - i've worn it three times in the last five weeks, which has got to be some sort of record for me (given that i'm normally a die-hard daily polish changer). it's just sooo glossy and sooo magical to apply...


comparison swatch: rescue beauty lounge scrangie and brucci typhoon lagoon

just did this for one of the nb girls, so figured i'd post it here as well.

scrangie is on my index and ring fingers; typhoon lagoon is on my middle finger and pinky. irl, they generally appear more different than they do in this pic (i think because the shimmer takes over in photos and makes it harder to see the differences in base color), but at some angles/in some lighting they do look quite similar.

main differences:

- opacity: this swatch is 3 coats of scrangie and 4 of typhoon lagoon. i bet scrangie would've only needed 2 though, had i been more careful.

- shimmer particles: the shimmer in typhoon lagoon is more "frosty" (which imo makes it more cheap-looking), whereas the shimmer in scrangie appears in larger, distinct particles. this difference is seen better in the pic below than in the one above.

- color of shimmer/duochrome effect: typhoon lagoon's is plain light blue, whereas scrangie's is green/greenish (which makes it, imo, more interesting).

- base purple color: scrangie has a slightly darker purple base color than typhoon lagoon, and then the fact that scrangie's shimmer is in particles rather than an all-permeating frost makes it look darker still (because the overall appearance of the polish isn't lightened by the shimmer in the way that typhoon lagoon's is). here's a pic that shows this well:

overall, i greatly prefer scrangie, not only for its ease of application but also for its darker purple color and its distinct shimmer particles rather than frosty appearance.


swatch: color club wild at heart

from the archives...

this polish applied like a dream and was very nicely pigmented - this is two coats. in the sunlight the holo comes alive, but unfortunately no sunlight was getting into my apartment the day i took this photo! boooo to gloomy nyc weather. even with its holo less than visible, however, wild at heart is a gorgeous shade of purple.


swatch: rescue beauty lounge mismas + maybelline colorama ruby rays

in love with this combo!

two coats of mismas topped with two coats of ruby rays


swatch: rescue beauty lounge mismas

the most amazingly smooth, amazingly pigmented purple creme evaaaaar.

this photo is of two coats, but mismas was practically opaque in just one. when i originally saw pics of this polish, i was worried it would be too cool-toned for me, but now that i'm wearing it i don't find that to be a problem at all (and i have very strong yellow/green undertones). in dim/indoor light mismas does get quite a bit darker - and with that, quite a bit cooler - but i don't find that it looks 'off' with my skin tone even then.

swatch: zoya sloane + rescue beauty lounge matte top coat

as per the request of my loyal reader micah (a fan of all things matte), here's an update on yesterday's notd of zoya sloane:

excuse the photo's low quality; this picture was taken under my desk lamp at two a.m. btw, i received the rbl matte top coat from a very generous friend today, and i have to say - it's amazing, if you like the matte look. super easy application, a very pronounced matte effect, and lightning-quick drying time.


swatch: zoya sloane

what a gorgeous vampy!

the shimmer in this is subtle, but really nice in the sun... although i'm afraid i didn't do the best job of capturing it in this photo. application on this was amazing - very thin and "flowy," and even in two coats.

sloane does go almost black in the shade and indoor lighting, but i don't mind that at all - i looove super-dark polishes, as they give the general look of black but without pure black's harshness/starkness.


swatch: china glaze stroll

a photo from the archives... stroll is a gorgeous crimson jelly jam-packed with microglitter. here it is with three coats:

p.s. nails night out was a blast! will post pics of the polishes i got as soon as i have a chance.


swatch: nails inc. the serpentine

now *this* had the amazing nails inc. formula that i love. two coats to total creamy, opaque perfection.

a rich, deep blue with a hint of dustiness...

under the fluorescent lights at work today, it was a simpler/more straightforward dark blue creme, but still gorgeous:

and now, i'm off to nails night out nyc! will report back in my next post.


swatch: nails inc little venice

so i decided to suck it up and take a quick picture. any application issues are 100% my fault - the polish itself was fine (albeit sheer). this photo is of three coats:

this is a great example of a polish that really changes with skin tone. on me, little venice doesn't have even a hint of the peach/pale coral tones it has on others - it's straight up milky baby pink. it looks like a jelly on the first coat, simply because it's so sheer, but once the coats are built up it loses that translucence.

i have to say, this color isn't "me" at all - i only got it because i couldn't find a source to buy the cruise collection polishes separately. i caught a glimpse of my nails while blasting my old stp favorites on my ipod at the post office and felt super awkward... it's definitely coming off the first chance i get!

swatch: l'oreal ocean

all right, i made a major mess of today's notd (nails inc. little venice) - i was polishing while freaking out over top chef, which led to minimal mani focus and major cuticle flooding. so here's another photo from the archives:

i love night sky/outer space polishes like this one (which came to me courtesy of a sweet friend). my favorite of the old laquiresists!

bf says: "that is my favorite glitter."


swatch: zoya savita

from the winter 2009 mattevelvet collection. this is really gorgeous, especially with a glossy topcoat added - the shine makes the shimmer really come alive. here it is with two coats:

and here's a photo of savita in its original matte state:

the secret to applying mattes (which i unfortunately only figured out halfway through applying this one) is to load up your brush with polish, much more than you would normally use to apply a regular creme or shimmer. this helps you to avoid the lumps that can otherwise result from their thickness and quick-drying nature. once i got this down, savita was a breeze to apply.

swatch: illamasqua boosh + clarins 230

i was running late for work today and didn't get a chance to take a photo of my notd (l.a. girl rockstar), so here's one from the archives. boooooooooosh is glossy, gorgeous perfection. applies wonderfully too... goes *precisely* where you put it. boosh, i love you.

and here it is with clarins 230 accent nails. i got so much flak on the nb for wearing 230 alone instead of layered over the black but whatever. i tried both options and liked it better this way... although i'm dying to wear it over a purple thanks to the pics pretty random has up here.

two coats of boosh, four of 230.


swatch: zoya sam

i was in the mood for a vampy yesterday, and this zoya (one of the polishes i got in their recent bogo promotion) didn't disappoint. it's reminiscent of dried blood and went on smoothly in three thin coats.

btw, this photo is in indirect sunlight... the polish looks quite a bit darker indoors.


swatch: nails inc. festival pier

i was expecting this to be a creamy coral-pink based on pics, but it turned out to be pretty much a neon. tbh, i'm pretty bummed about this one; it was quite chalky and thick, and i expect better from a nails inc. creme. and of course, given its neon hue it was a major pain to photograph - i made a half-hearted attempt to photoshop this picture into color accuracy but gave up pretty quickly. in this picture we have 3 coats, plus touchups:

now off to do a quick mani - must think of something that will entertain me through a full day of teaching plus be party-appropriate for evening!


swatch: l.a. girl rock star punk

i've been wearing this for the past couple of days and i really like it (although i'm about to change to a pink or coral creme, i think - craving a return to my np roots). it's blue with a strong purple duochrome effect and gorgeous large shimmer. this polish went on quite sheer at first, so i used three coats in these photos.

here it is in natural light, on a very overcast day:

and here's a pic taken under my desk lamp that really shows the purple duochrome:

by the way, if you get this at forever 21 (which is where i got mine - trying to delay a cherryculture order as right now i have >100 untrieds), this is simply labeled "blue."


intro and swatch: bb couture night ops

hiii. :) there's such a dearth of darker-skinned bloggers in the nail polish world, so i'm hoping this notd log (i hesitate to call it a blog) will help other girls with my skintone who've struggled to visualize how certain polishes might look on them (btw, i'm ~mac nc42). i collect nails inc, love street wear, hard candy, and urban decay, and am a major sucker for a good vivid pink or orange-red creme.

anyway, here is yesterday's notd, bb couture for men night ops - a beautiful murky deep teal jelly full of microglitter. this photo is of 3 coats in indirect sunlight:

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