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Nubar 2010 10th Anniversary Color Swatches, Review and Comparison

By on May 19, 2010
in Glitter, Nubar, Summer 2010 with 40 Comments
nubar-2010-bottle To celebrate 10 years of creating beautiful 3-Free polishes, Nubar has released a special edition color called Nubar 2010.  A clear polish filled with iridescent flake glitter, this lacquer will make those of you who have yet to hunt down Sally Hansen Hidden Treasure very very happy.

Not only does Nubar continually put out collection after collection of gorgeous colors, they have some of the best treatment products on the market.  Their Foundation Base Coat has achieved “holy grail” status in my book and the Diamont top coat is one of the few quick drys in my arsenal that isn’t thick or tricky to apply.  In my opinion, that’s more than enough reason to celebrate their 10th Anniversary in style.  And Nubar 2010 has plenty of style.  Check it out after the jump!

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Nubar Royal Gems Collection – Coming Soon

By on August 24, 2009
in Fall 2009, Nubar with 0 Comments

If you’ve been wondering how Nubar would follow up the utlra stunning Going Green collection, I’ve got the answer. Next month Nubar will launch the Royal Gems collection; a set of seven rich jewel tones and one glitter bomb that can be worn alone or layered.

The Royal Gems collection includes:
24k – pure glimmering gold shimmer with gold glitter accents
Ruby – shimmering red with red glitter
Tiger’s Eye – warm medium brown shimmer
Emerald – sparkling green shimmer with green glitter
Sapphire – blue glitter in a base of royal blue shimmer
Platinum – lustrous silver with silver glitter accents
Amethyst – rich royal purple shimmer with subtle blue micro glitter accents
Tiara – rich multi-faceted glitter which can either be used alone or as a top coat that takes on the color of any shade with which it is paired.


The Royal Gems Collection will release on September 15th. Nubar polishes retail for $7.49/ea and can be purchased on ByNubar.com.

I will have swatches of these and the Modern Matte collection for you soon so stay tuned.

Matte Top Coats – Let’s Compare

Love it or hate it, Matte Nails are the big trend for Fall. With all the matte nail polish collections coming out, it will be a hard style to ignore. If you’re not ready to jump in feet first, why not try a matte top coat instead? Using them to mattify any polish in your arsenal makes it a more versatile and budget friendly way to embrace the look. Give your tried and true shades an update with a new finish.

From flat to satin there are a plethora of choices in the non-glossy top coat realm and I’ve tried them all so you don’t have to. Check out the results after the jump!

First things first. There are certain things you give up in using a matte top coat.

  1. These are not fast drying products so you have to be willing to put in the time to get the look.
  2. The more matte the top coat, the more unforgiving it is. Brush strokes or unevenness can plague you if your application isn’t perfect. As with all new things, practice, practice, practice.
  3. Matte top coats absorb oil and water as you go about your daily routine so the finish will become more satin over time.

Essie Matte About You ($10, essie.com) and Rescue Beauty Lounge Matte Top Coat ($18, RescueBeauty.com) are the most mattifying top coats I’ve come across. If you desire that truly flat finish this is your best option. The cloudiness does lighten the shade a touch but not significantly.

Nubar V For Men Matte Finish Nail Protector ($8.99, ByNubar.com) comes in a close 2nd to Essie and RBL in terms matte-ness and I love that it’s more forgiving in terms of application. It applies smooth and even every time.


Now for those wanting a satin style nail, the next three options are ideal. They take down the gloss giving a more buffed look. Orly Matte Top Coat is actually discontinued but still available on Head2ToeBeauty.com for $4.95 so get it while supplies last.
Orly Nails for Males ($6.99, SallyBeauty.com) performs similarly to the Matte Top Coat in spite of its dark appearance.

Finally, Barielle’s Matte-inee Top Coat will be launching soon on Barielle.com.

I received quite a few questions regarding InStyle’s June issue. One of the tips in the Summer beauty section was about matte nails. They suggested using “your base coat as a top coat to remove the shine from your lacquer.”

Here’s my problem with that. They showed ="font-weight: bold;">butter London’s Nail Foundation ($18, butterLondon.com) as an example yet they neglected to explain that only ridge filling base coats dry matte. Using your clear or tacky base coats won’t achieve that look. Overly opaque or shimmery ridge fillers won’t get it done either.

Nonie Creme of butter London used her Nail Foundation over Yummy Mummy backstage at Alexander Wang to matte down the shine and in this instance using a base coat totally worked. She even sent me a pic from her iPhone to share with you (above).

However when I used it over my test shade, OPI No Room For The Blues, it didn’t turn out as well. The nude pigmentation in the base changed the color drastically. If you don’t mind that, it’s a simple mattifying solution but I still prefer a matte top coat.

So did this clear up a lot of your questions reagarding matte top coats? Which do you prefer… matte top coats or matte polish? Or do you wish this whole matte thing would just go away already? Sound off Fanatics!

Nubar Going Green Collection Review & Swatches

nubar, going green collection, nail polish, nail color, 3freeWe interrupt your regularly scheduled programming to bring you…. GREENS!!! I know I promised to show you the other half of Retro Diva but I’m sorry, a collection of GREENS trumps all. As soon as I got my hands on Nubar’s Going Green eco-themed collection I knew I couldn’t (more like shouldn’t) wait to show them to you.

A whole collection of green polish. It’s like a dream come true. Did Nubar employ stealth psychics to stalk me and read my mind? Is this the result of years of MUA nail board begging for more fabulous greens than we can handle? Who cares, they’re gorgeous and they’re real! Check them out after the jump!


I’m not going to bog you down with a lot of chatter about these. In regards to the formula the bottom line is this; smooth, thin, well pigmented, two coat coverage, fast drying. In other words, pretty damn perfect. Each color glided on with ease. Now can we talk color?? I know you wanna!

I don’t know that I’ve seen a more gorgeous polish in my life than Greener and I’m not exaggerating. It’s heart stopping stunning and as incredible as it looks in pictures, it’s even more jaw-dropping in person. A true emerald shimmer, this exemplifies jewel tone and I own NOTHING like it.
Forest is a slightly mossy green creme. Can you even stand how flawless it is? Can you?? Just when I thought I’d never love another green creme the way I swoon over RBL Recycle, along comes Forest trying to steal my affections.
Speaking of Recycle, I knew the first question from you guys would be about how they compare. Recycle is decidedly darker and a bit bluer in its base tone. And if you ask me to choose a favorite between them, I’ll cut you! Seriously, it’s not a fair question!

Earth is a sparkling jade green. The light green micro-shimmer dances over the blue-green hue giving it depth and character. It’s very rich yet serene. Staring at it puts me at peace.

Conserve is a deep teal shimmer with slightly chunky glitter. It dries with a satin finish and bit of texture from the sparkle.

Can I get a HOLLA for the HOLO Reclaim? Don’t judge my cheesiness people, I’ve been waiting for a great green holo polish. The ones I have are all pretty light and not noticeably green. This one is a fabulous springy, grassy hue packed with fine holographic glitter. I wish it had been sunny so I could show its full holographic power but it’s a gloomy, rainy day in the Cleveburg.

Wildlife is a duochrome that flashes both bronze and fern shades depending on the angle. I don’t know fanatics, this one just isn’t grabbing me. I think it’s the alien-esque glow at the sides that are turning me off. It’s definitely got that “in the wild” type feel, I just don’t think it’s for me.

Nubar recently announced that they’ve partnered with PETA and have been certified as Vegan & Cruelty-Free. So you’ll soon see this cute little guy appearing on Nubar’s web site and packaging. Congrats Nubar!

Nubar polishes retail for $7.49 each and can be purchased online at ByNubar.com. The Going Green collection is listed as Coming Soon so keep your eyes peeled for an announcement of its on sale date.

Are you all totally flipping for these or WHAT? Share!

Playing with Texture – Matte and Glossy Nail Art

Happy Memorial Day Weekend Fanatics!

Mr. ALU is spending the weekend studying for the last part of the CPA exam (please wish him luck) which gives me plenty of time to play in the polish room. Not the most thrilling holiday weekend ever but at least after Tuesday we’ll be free to enjoy the rest of the summer. The rest of our lives really! Plus my pal Jamie from The Beauty of Life is home so I won’t be high on polish fumes all weekend long.

Anywho after posting details on OPI’s upcoming Matte polish collection, Suzi’s suggestion about combining finishes prompted me to experiment. Using the black, textured nails I saw at the CND production suite during Fashion Week as inspiration, I got to work. Check out the products I used to recreate the look and see the finished result after the jump!


Tools

Technique
I chose to do an alternating effect. With two coats of Sinful Black on Black as the base color, I used matte and shiny top coats on every other finger and, when dry, placed shiny and matte stripes (respectively) over top. Just to see if there was a difference in the look, I did one set of shiny stripes with the black nail art polish (middle finger) and the other set with the glossy top coat (pinkie finger) using the nail stripping brush. I had better control with the brush but it’s really a matter of preference.

Because these top coats aren’t quick drying, I waited a good 5-10 minutes for each one to set up before applying the stripes. The matte top coat applies glossy and dries to a satin/flat finish. Using two coats intensifies the effect.

Using the nail art brush, dip into the matte/glossy top coat and gently drag across the nail. I find it easier to hold the brush relatively steady and roll the nail underneath. Experiment to find the method that works best for you. What you see below is my first attempt so my lines aren’t as clean and even as they should be.




What I love about this look is that it’s subtle and unique. It’s not over the top nail art but it’s distinctive. I did a glossy tip using OPI A Grape Fit! last night and it looked really cool. Too bad sheet marks wrecked it by morning.

So what do you think? Are you into it?

Oh and stay tuned for Swatch Requests, I’m gonna try and bang as many of the most requested comparisons as I can. Toodles for now!

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