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Summer 2007

Essie Bahamas Swatches

By on July 15, 2007
in Essie, Summer 2007 with 3 Comments

Essie has teamed up with the Atlantis Resort on Paradise Island, the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and Kamalame Cay to create a special summer collection. As part of the It’s Better In The Bahamas promotion you can win a trip to the gorgeous tropical locale. Check out the Essie website for an entry form and details.

Ok, I’ll be honest with you. When I see the colors in this collection, I don’t think Bahamas or beach or ocean. With the exception of Jumpin’ Junkanoo and The Cove Copper the rest of the colors seem like typical safe shades for the company that has built an empire on pinks, reds and sheers.

Now I haven’t been to the Bahamas myself but I have been to many of the Caribbean islands and if I had created a collection based on the culture and area it would be filled with hot pink, coral, sea green, opalescent shell pink and a sandy shimmer. But we all have different visions and this is Essie’s. It seems to me that she decided to create shades that flatter the women of the islands rather than reflect on their surroundings.

(l-r) Island Hopping, Bahama Mama, Atlantis Pearl
(l-r) The Cove Copper, Lyford Lilac and Jumpin’ Junkanoo
Right off the bat I knew I would love Jumpin Junkanoo. It’s vibrant with a subtle pink shimmer. Slightly rose toned and extremely glossy. I couldn’t wait to put it on my toes and let me tell you, it’s a fabulous pedicure shade. Two quick coats and I was good to go.

The Cove Copper’s metallic bronziness is very hot for summer. It leaves some slight brush strokes but nothing extreme and it was opaque with two coats. For the most part this collection is highly pigmented.

Lyford Lilac is what the nail board would call a “pukey mauve.” No disrespect to the folks at Essie but these type of shades are extremely hard to pull off. I really think this shade is best intended for women of color.

Island Hopping is another shade that would work better on darker skin tones. It’s described as a rum raisin but, with my coloring, it’s just a muted purple nightmare. I must say that since so many cosmetics are geared toward fairer skinned ladies, I applaud Essie for making a collection that has something for everyone.

The name Bahama Mama makes me think of a fruity rum concoction but this berry shade doesn’t quite match the fun and frisky moniker. This berry shade is pretty and glossy but it applied streaky and took three coats to become opaque. Of all the colors in this collection, this is the one I would suggest you pass on.

Atlantis Pearl is slightly paler and less opalescent than the shell pink I would imagine being in this collection but it’s soft and pretty. The only issue I had was with streakiness. I applied two coats in the swatch above but I’m sure that with three coats you could even it out.

Alright, so now it’s your turn to weigh in. I’m sure by now some of you have tried these. What are your “must have” and “I’ll pass” shades? Help keep your fellow polish junkies from missing out on a “holy grail” or wasting money.

NOTD – China Glaze For Audrey

I decided to wear China Glaze For Audrey during the photo shoot for the article coming out this Sunday. It’s very on trend and a brilliant tribute to Audrey Hepburn and Tiffany & Co. What girl doesn’t love Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Audrey Hepburn?

For Audrey is inspired by the famous Tiffany blue not a dead on dupe. I find the polish to be a bit more muted and dusty though definitely in the same vein.

I picked up For Audrey from Head2Toe Beauty. 8ty8 Beauty carries it as well. If it is out of stock, don’t give up hope. Email both suppliers to see if there is more bottles on order before you give in to the eBay scalpers.

Let’s Talk Trends – Summer 2007

By on June 21, 2007
in Summer 2007, Trends with 6 Comments

So we’ve seen the summer collections, I’ve tested them and picked my favorites. Now let’s talk about the trends for this summer. While I still find a shiny black nail very chic, the trend is dead people. Time to move on.

Today is the summer solstice, the longest day of the year and the official start of Summer in the northern hemisphere. It’s going to reach a balmy 80 degrees here in the burbs of Cleveland, Ohio and I’m ready to talk trends.

I’m calling this summer as being all about Blues, Whites and Brights. And you can quote me on that. I know there’s been talk of a metallic trend and yes the OPI Night Brights has a silvery lavender and two gold tones but, I just don’t think it’s hitting like expected.

For the Blue trend people will transition from black to navy, go outside their comfort zone with royal shimmery blue and for the color shy, it’ll be baby blue on tips and toes. I’ve selected my favorite blues from my collection. Some are new, some are old and the majority are still available for purchase.

So you still want to be vampy but not dated? Check out these dark blues. Revlon Midnight Affair is a limited edition shade, part of the Dark Pleasures collection. I’ve seen it at Ulta and other drug store chains. Fingerpaints Summer Nights is only carried at Sally Beauty Supply. It came out with their summer collection but Fingerpaints tend to sell out fast so this one may be hard to come by. China Glaze Up All Night is a classic navy blue. Even though it’s technically a shimmer, it looks like a gorgeous creme when applied. As part of the Patent Leather In The City collection, Up All Night fits the bill with it’s high gloss shine.
Wanting a little glitz with your blue? Then check out OPI Ink from the Night Brights. It’s smooth purple and blue glitter will get you noticed. The holographic glitter in Glamour from the Designer Series will turn your toes into rainbows while you lay out at the pool. NYX Sapphire has a somewhat foil appearance that is bound to get attention.

Feeling brave and wanting to go full on blue? You’re a gal after my own heart. These next 3 sets of pics will fill that need.

Creative Blue Nirvana from this spring’s Optix collection is a unique periwinkle shade. OPI Blue My Mind is from the original Brights collection but is still readily available. China Glaze Drinkin’ My Blues Away from the Tequila Toes collection has that famous glass flecked formula and can be found easily online. Zoya Tart is from the Candy collection. Check the Zoya site for salon locations and purchase info. N.Y.C. Skin Tight Denim is a great drugstore find. A blue for the budget minded polish fanatic.

China Glaze Sexy In The City is also from Patent Leather In The City. I feel it was overshadowed by Beauty & The Beach from the Fiji Fling collection but that it’s a much better blue. Nubar Mali-Blue can be purchased directly from Nubar. NYX South Sea can be found in many beauty supply stores, outlet malls and online. Color Club All In is a bold blue creme, very unique. I buy Color Club online from e-tailers like Head2Toe Beauty & 8ty8 Beauty.

OPI Just Groovy from the Psychedelic Summer collection and Zoya Yummy from the Candy collection are both cremes and could be sisters their shades are so close. Orly Turquoise Charm is from the Year In Rocks collection. The 12 shades are all inspired by birthstones. Turquoise Charm is my favorite of all the twelve and if you can find it, a must have in my opinion. The glitter is a pain to remove but the color is gorgeous.

Ok, so blue scares you a bit but you’re still curious. You prefer pale shades but want something different. You like sparkle but not dark blue. Well, here are the polishes for you.

Creative Aqua Jet from the Optix collection has a great iridescence to keep it from looking chalky. China Glaze Moody Blue from the original Patent Leather collection gives off an amazing high gloss shine and makes a for a gorgeous pedicure. And China Glaze Kaleidoscope Him Out from last fall’s Kaleidoscope collection is blingtastic.

When I think of White polish, my first flash is to the sheer boring shades that my mother wore for the majority of my childhood. Pearly, dated and blah. My second flash is to white out chalky tips. Very mod but so hard to pull off. This summer white is making a comeback in a bold and fun way that’s still extremely wearable. Whites should be opaque with iridescence or sparkle.

The three main shades for this summer are China Glaze White-Kwik-Silvr from the Surf collection, Creative Hyper Fresh from the Optix collection and OPI Fit For A Queensland from the Australia collection. White-Kwik-Silvr is my favorite. It’s a glass flecked white that will suit most skin tones. Hyper Fresh and Fit For A Queensland are bit trickier to pull off but they both have iridescence to make them wearable.

If you can find those three polishes, pick up any old white creme and make it better with a sparkly sheer white layered on top. These three aren’t the easiest to find but there are lots of alternatives out there. I just happen to own and like China Glaze Straight Up, OPI Elle’s Pearls and OPI What’s Dune? What’s Dune? from the Summer for Shore collection has a fine holographic shimmer that I adore.

Fit For A Queensland Photo Credit: 15 Minute Beauty Fanatic

I know, I know, Brights for summer is nothing new. Brights and warm weather go hand in hand. I’m not exactly Kreskin by calling them a summer trend. However, instead of the typical bright pinks, corals and reds that tend to be the norm, this year yellow, orange and turquoise are in the spotlight. Fluorescent is the way to go. It’s not like we haven’t seen these colors before, they just haven’t been mainstream.

Being a green lover, turquoise and teal are a great way for me to be summery and get my green fix. Nocti Nip Tuck, China Glaze Passion in the Pacific from the Fiji Fling collection and Turned Up Turquoise from the ongoing Wow Factor collection are all shimmery bold turquoise shades while Creative Hotski To Tchotcke leans more towards teal.

I know yellow is a bit too much for most people. It was a bit too much for me until I wore it. But, yellow is everywhere. Even it the idea of yellow on your nails makes you squeamish, you should at least pick up a yellow accented bag or shoe for the season. China Glaze Yell-O Neil from the Surf collection & OPI Cabana Banana from the Summer Splash collection can look like you had an accident with some Gulden’s mustard but I think they’re fun. Zoya Creamy is a much gentler yellow with a glossy finish.

Where would warm toned gals be without orange or coral in the summer? While these shades may suit the cooler skin tones, they are designed with the warmer gal in mind. Nocti Bikini is a traffic stopping day glo orange while OPI Tangerine Scene from the Psychedelic collection is a bit more subdued. Misa Um You’re Too Delicious from the Love Connections colletion reminds me of a nectarine and China Glaze Orange-Pacific from the Surf collection has smatters of glorious gold glitter.

What you thought I’d leave out pink and fuchsia? Don’t be silly. They’ll always be big in the summer. These just happen to be my favorites. Divine from the Designer Series is one of my all time favorite shades. The holo glitter and bold shade are to die for. Misa Ur Beautiful is a bit on the cool side for me but still a gorgeous fuchsia creme. Creative Scorch from this summer’s Flash Point collection has hot pink shimmer and the name says it all for China Glaze Shocking Pink from the Wow Factor collection.

So now that I’ve made my picks, what are your favorite colors for summer? Do you agree with my trends choices or think I’m way off base? Chime in with your thoughts!

Essie’s Going To The Bahamas

By on June 20, 2007
in Essie, Summer 2007 with 4 Comments
Launching July 1, 2007, the “It’s Better in the Bahamas” collection from Essie.
Information courtesy of Essie PR:
Miles of sugary sand beaches, pristine turquoise water, luxurious resorts and colorful, spirited festivals that can only be found in one place… The Islands Of The Bahamas.

Essie brings the technicolor dreams of The Bahamas to life with six fantastic new nail polish shades inspired by the beauty of this tropical paradise and its people.”

The “It’s Better In The Bahamas” Collection includes:
The Cove Copper – rich, shimmery copper
Atlantis Pearl – sheer pink with a hint of pearl
Bahama Mama – deep plum
Lyford Lilac – mauve-lilac
Jumpin’ Junkanoo – blooming brownish-pink
Island Hopping – rum-raisin

In addition to creating this beautiful new collection, essie is offering an island hopping escape to The Islands Of The Bahamas, courtesy of the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Atlantis Paradise Island and Kamalame Cay. One lucky winner will receive a relaxing six-night/seven-day stay in The Bahamas, spending three nights each at two of the destination’s most luxurious resorts, Atlantis Paradise Island and Kamalame Cay on the laid back Out Island of Andros. Fifty second-place winners will receive a deluxe beach bag stuffed with island getaway goodies.

To enter and for official rules, visit any fine salon, retailer of professional beauty products or log onto starting July 1, 2007.

Dashing Diva

By on June 3, 2007
in Dashing Diva, Summer 2007 with 3 Comments

A reader suggested I check out Dashing Diva products and I have to say thank you for the suggestion. Not only am I impressed with their polish line but, after speaking with a Dashing Diva rep, I’m totally jealous of anyone that lives near one of their salons. I mean, who wouldn’t want to spend a Girls’ Night Out sipping cosmos while getting a pampering pedi? If any of you have been to a Dashing Diva salon, you must spill about the experience. Inquiring minds want to know.

Alrighty, so let’s dish about the polish. Dashing Diva carries over 150 shades ranging from cremes to sheers to shimmers and frosts, so there’s a finish and color for everyone. While I’m normally drawn to the “crazy colors,” I was quite pleased to test out some of the more standard nail shades in addition to their 3 new summer colors.

I received 4 of Dashing Diva’s most popular shades that are now part of the Extra Virgin collection. They’ve taken their 8 most popular shades and made them Big 3 Free.

First up, Convertible Red Connie (misspelled in the photo, oops). All I have to say is 3 words, listen up everyone, “ONE COAT COVERAGE!” I’m not kidding. A red creme that is true, glossy and streak free in one coat. I’m flabbergasted and wowed beyond belief. I’m telling you, pictures do not do it justice and you will not regret purchasing this one. In fact, I don’t blame you for leaving the site to go order it immediately. Just make sure you come back and read the rest later.

So on to Prima Donna Pink. A bold fuchsia creme, this would be a great summer pedi color for the cool toned. It didn’t have the same jaw-dropping wow factor as Convertible Red Connie but it applied smoothly and evenly and was true to the bottle color with 2 coats.

Pink Martini Marni is a dusty shell pink with a hint of pearl. It’s on the sheerer side but totally buildable. This is a very safe, everyday color. What I would call an “interview polish” An elegant, classic, clean pink regardless of the slight bubble-gummy appearance it has below.

Chelsea In The Buff has a grayish cast to it in the bottle. On the nail, it’s a creamy sheer. The Dashing Diva site describes it as a “sheer light dusty pink,” but I don’t see that at all. It just looked dirty on me and is not my type of color.

Next up, Dashing Diva’s summer collection. An Italian themed collection of sheers filled with glitz. As you can see from the nail swatch pic below, you can get them semi-opaque with enough coats. I used two coats and could still see my tips below. They all applied smoothly but I did have a bit of an issue with View From Anacapri. It pooled a bit at my tips.

View From Anacapri was not as blue as I was hoping. The bottle color never really came to life on my nails. Instead, it’s a silvery sheer shimmer with a hint of blue that shows up in direct light.

Fellini Bellini is my favorite due to it’s peachiness. You might call it a golden pink but it reminds me of the setting sun.

Paparazzi Pink is an iridescent metallic mid-tone pink. It looks a bit Barbie-ish in direct sunlight and more rosy indoors.

I’ll be honest, none of these 3 really won me over. They’re just not my cup of tea.

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