The first nail-focused beauty blog

Summer 2009

Yellow Nail Trend – Blazin’ Hot or Nail Fail?

natalie portman, cassie, yellow nailsYellow is popping up everywhere these days. Celebs like Natalie Portman and Cassie have been spotted recently sporting bright yellow manicures. And who could forget Rihanna’s lemon smiley faces from last winter (below)?

Granted, yellow isn’t exactly new for nails. We’ve been talking about it here since ALU began and the writers over at one of my fave daily reads, the Nylon Blog, have been obsessing over it since early 2008 but it seems that right now, yellow is having its moment.

rihanna, yellow nails, smiley face nailsThe only major downside is that yellow is not an easy color to pull off. Wearing it will draw attention and choosing the wrong shade can make you look downright sickly. On the upside, a punch of lemon on your tips or toes can be the perfect accent to your summer wardrobe. Are you ready to make the leap and try the trend for yourself? Then you’ve come to the right place. My top yellow polishes are listed after the jump.


They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Last summer, the image of Selma Blair in InStyle rocking Chanel L.A. Sunrise from the Robertson Boulevard Collection was worth way more than a thousand bottles as nail fanatics flew to scoop one up the day it went on sale. This fanatic even went so far as to order two, the first time in years I’ve bought a backup.

Soft, buttery shades like this one are definitely the most flattering form of yellow and the least intimidating for newbies to the bright nail scene. You can still pick up a bottle of L.A. Sunrise on Chanel.com or opt for one of the alternatives below.

Chanel L.A. Sunrise, $25, Chanel.com


Rescue Beauty Lounge Square Pants, $18, RescueBeauty.com


Finger Paints Yellow Bikini, $4.99, Sally Beauty Supply


OPI Banana Bandanna, $8.95 (Coming Soon)


Each year Pantone, the authority on color, names its Color of The Year and for 2009 it’s Mimosa. A warm, golden shade chosen for the hope and reassurance it expresses, I was bit leery of Mimosa leaking over into the polish world. It’s a bit too warm for my skintone making me look sallow but against olive or dark skin it’s fantastic. My top rec’s for Mimosa-esque shades are…

CND Hot Pop Yellow, $2.99, Head2ToeBeauty.com


China Glaze Solar Power, $2.60, TransDesign.com


OPI The “It” Color, $4.48, 8ty8Beauty.com

Finally, if you’re ready to throw caution to the wind and really go for it with something sunny and vibrant, you can’t miss with one of these beauties.

Rescue Beauty Lounge Yellow Fever, $18, RescueBeauty.com


Misa Happy Happy, $3, Head2ToeBeauty.com


Barielle Lemon Drops, $8, Barielle.com


How do you feel about yellow nails? Is it the hot color of the summer or too scary for words? Do you have a fave I overlooked? Let us know in the comments.

Yellow Nail Trend – Blazin’ Hot or Nail Fail?

natalie portman, cassie, yellow nailsYellow is popping up everywhere these days. Celebs like Natalie Portman and Cassie have been spotted recently sporting bright yellow manicures. And who could forget Rihanna’s lemon smiley faces from last winter (below)?

Granted, yellow isn’t exactly new for nails. We’ve been talking about it here since ALU began and the writers over at one of my fave daily reads, the Nylon Blog, have been obsessing over it since early 2008 but it seems that right now, yellow is having its moment.

rihanna, yellow nails, smiley face nailsThe only major downside is that yellow is not an easy color to pull off. Wearing it will draw attention and choosing the wrong shade can make you look downright sickly. On the upside, a punch of lemon on your tips or toes can be the perfect accent to your summer wardrobe. Are you ready to make the leap and try the trend for yourself? Then you’ve come to the right place. My top yellow polishes are listed after the jump.


They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Last summer, the image of Selma Blair in InStyle rocking Chanel L.A. Sunrise from the Robertson Boulevard Collection was worth way more than a thousand bottles as nail fanatics flew to scoop one up the day it went on sale. This fanatic even went so far as to order two, the first time in years I’ve bought a backup.

Soft, buttery shades like this one are definitely the most flattering form of yellow and the least intimidating for newbies to the bright nail scene. You can still pick up a bottle of L.A. Sunrise on Chanel.com or opt for one of the alternatives below.

Chanel L.A. Sunrise, $25, Chanel.com


Rescue Beauty Lounge Square Pants, $18, RescueBeauty.com


Finger Paints Yellow Bikini, $4.99, Sally Beauty Supply


OPI Banana Bandanna, $8.95 (Coming Soon)


Each year Pantone, the authority on color, names its Color of The Year and for 2009 it’s Mimosa. A warm, golden shade chosen for the hope and reassurance it expresses, I was bit leery of Mimosa leaking over into the polish world. It’s a bit too warm for my skintone making me look sallow but against olive or dark skin it’s fantastic. My top rec’s for Mimosa-esque shades are…

CND Hot Pop Yellow, $2.99, Head2ToeBeauty.com


China Glaze Solar Power, $2.60, le="font-weight: bold;" href="http://www.transdesign.com/">TransDesign.com


OPI The “It” Color, $4.48, 8ty8Beauty.com

Finally, if you’re ready to throw caution to the wind and really go for it with something sunny and vibrant, you can’t miss with one of these beauties.

Rescue Beauty Lounge Yellow Fever, $18, RescueBeauty.com


Misa Happy Happy, $3, Head2ToeBeauty.com


Barielle Lemon Drops, $8, Barielle.com


How do you feel about yellow nails? Is it the hot color of the summer or too scary for words? Do you have a fave I overlooked? Let us know in the comments.

Illamasqua Sirens Collection – Muse Nail Varnish

By on May 12, 2009
in Illamasqua, Summer 2009, Teal with 14 Comments
A couple weeks ago when I announced the news that Illamasqua is now shipping to the States, I posted a preview of their summer collection, Sirens, with new teal and coral nail varnishes. When I first got word of their new colors, the rep from Illamasqua told me they made her “want to cry they are so beautiful!” Color that brings you to tears?? Sign me up!

After all these years of playing with polish I still get jazzed about new colors but it’s the rare bird that causes a major reaction like crying. Could Muse live up to the hype? Find out after the jump!


OK so I didn’t cry but when I opened the box to see the smokey teal but I did shriek a bit, freaking out our kitties, before I raced to the polish room to give it a whirl.

Everything about Muse is fantastic. Loads of pigment, check! Smooth, creamy formula, check! Two coat coverage, double check! High gloss shine, you see where I’m going with this, right? Its deep blue-green hue reminds me of this Gap cardigan I owned forever and a day ago that I just LOVED and kind of wish I still owned, just for wearing around the house of course.
Since I had to bail on the swatch requests last weekend, I thought I’d head you off at the path with some Muse comparisons. As you can see, Muse is deeper than China Glaze Shower Together (Aqua Baby’s twin) and nowhere near as dark as Rescue Beauty Lounge Teal which I swear looks more teal in person.
The Sirens collection is available now on Illamasqua.com and on shelves at Selfridges in the UK.

Thoughts? Anyone know of a good Muse dupe? Share in the comments.

OPI SUNBelievable Collection

SUNBelievable = Summer sun + unbelievable style!

Sunbelievable by OPI captures all the sizzling color and casual attitude of summer style in four playfully pretty shades for nails.

I’m loving all the fun yellows coming out this season. Whereas neon orange seemed to be the hit of Summer ’08, yellow is making its presence known this year. And even though blue has become relatively mainstream, I’m a sucker for anything offbeat so this collection is totally dialed into my taste.


I suspect OPI may have tinkered with its formula for this collection. It applied a bit different than I expected. The polishes are all thin and semi-sheer almost jelly-ish in consistency. With one noted exception, they all required three coats.

Sea? I Told You is what I had hoped the sheer Can’t You Sea? from the 2006 Brights collection would be. It’s a micro-glittery aquamarine gem that dries with a foil-like finish.

I’m His Coral-friend is the most pigmented of the bunch, the lone two-coater. I haven’t been into corals in a while but this one strikes a chord with me. I don’t know if it’s the finish that looks like I dipped my fingers in a bowl of thick jam or that it’s just a change of pace but I’m diggin’ it.

Banana Bandanna screams summer. This buttery creme looks like it’s supposed to have a shimmery sheen in the bottle but dries glossy and creamy on the nail. I wouldn’t call it a full on lemon yellow like Finger Paints Yellow Bikini. It’s more like the softer version of Chanel L.A. Sunrise.

If The Fuchsia Fits is a pretty typical hot pink shimmer along the lines of Ladies and Magenta-Men and Flashbulb Fuchsia. It applies well but is the most sheer of the bunch. It has a fun light pink flash but it’s not overly unique.
The Sunbelievable collection officially launches in June 2009 but I’ve heard that some stores already have them on shelves. OPI nail polish retails for $8.50 and is carried at professional salons including Beauty Brands, Beauty First, Dillard’s, JCPenney, Pure Beauty, Regis, Trade Secret, and Ulta.

Whatcha think kids? Is it SUNBelievable?

Big NEWS Illamasqua Fans!

By on April 24, 2009
in Illamasqua, Summer 2009 with 3 Comments
You asked for it and you GOT IT!! Illamasqua is now shipping to the US. No need for a petition, just some clicking and shopping. I just received word that Illamasqua’s online shop will start shipping to the US for a flat rate of £12.50. That’s a bit steep I know, so team up with your nail fanatic buddies and get some group orders going.

If you need some enabling, check out:

For My UK Fanatics – Illamasqua

St Patty’s Day NOTD 2009 – Illamasqua Elope

More Illamasqua Fun with Fern, Milf and Rampage

Also, I have the deets on Illamasqua’s summer collection, Sirens, after the jump!


Inspired by the powerful beauty of the Sirens, the captivating, brutal nature of their appeal and the undeniable pull of their decadent existence, Illamasqua has created a new make-up collection designed to glorify the divine being within us all.

The collection provides a cornucopia of sumptuous shades, from shimmering corals and aquamarines, to luscious golds and bronzed metallics. With products to enhance the face, eyes, lips and nails, Sirens lets you indulge your alter ego, and ensure that your summer nights are even hotter than the days.

Included in the collection are two hot new Nail Varnishes, Muse and Lament (below). If you look closely at the model’s nails, you’ll see that they used the shades to create a summery funky french. I’ll have swatches for you soon.

The Sirens collection was launched at the beginning of April as a Selfridges exclusive and is now available online.

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