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ALU’s 365 of Untrieds – Revlon Vixen

By on June 17, 2011
in 365 of Untrieds, Revlon, Vampy with 65 Comments
revlon vixen nail polish a known chanel vamp dupe 365 of Untrieds is my personal challenge to weed through the polishes in the ALU stash that I’ve been wanting to try but just haven’t gotten around to.

Back when the Makeup Alley Nail Board first started, one of its members started a list of “known dupes.” Revlon Vixen was one of the first on the list as a twin for the original Chanel Vamp, not the shimmery version that it became.

Now I had been wanting a bottle of Vamp ever since it first appeared on Uma Thurman’s nails in Pulp Fiction but, at the time, Chanel was not in my budget. So I ran out and bought a bottle of Vixen and it has literally sat in my collection ever since. At the time it wasn’t necessarily a color I was into, it was more that I just needed to own it. Since then, I guess I’ve just forgotten about it. So much for that “need” I thought I had.

Outside of its dupe status, Vixen is a staple shade in its own right. One of those classics that most nail fanatics have. Here’s the deal though. My bottle is probably seven years old but since it’s unopened you would think it would be fine to use. Um, not so much. What a disaster of bubbles. I actually went out to buy a new bottle of Vixen just to see if it is worthy of stashing. So if I say “share” that will be two bottles worth of money I’ll have wasted.

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OPI Burlesque Collection for Holiday 2010 Swatches, Review & Comparisons

By on October 1, 2010
in Bronze, Holiday 2010, OPI, Red, Vampy with 120 Comments
opi-burlesque-holiday-2010 This holiday, OPI hits a high note with the release of Sony Pictures’ upcoming film Burlesque. With an all-star cast including Cher and Christina Aguilera, this musical written and directed by Steven Antin opens nationwide in theaters on November 24, 2010.

OPI’s Holiday 2010 collection marks the third film collaboration for the brand this year.  Following up the sell out successes of Alice In Wonderland and Shrek, the Burlesque lineup is sure to follow suit.  This year OPI has flipped the script by forgoing their usual six reds in varying finishes to give us six shimmers in warm metallics, a vampy plum and some more traditional reds.

“OPI is thrilled to partner with Sony Pictures’ Screen Gems on this exciting movie release,” said Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, OPI Executive VP & Artistic Director. “The colors were modeled off the majestic glamour, over-the-top costumes and mesmerizing Cabaret that are typically seen in Burlesque performances. The resulting bright, dazzling shades are perfect for the holiday season.”

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CND Monday – Dark Ruby Colour & Jade Sparkle Effect

By on November 2, 2009
in CND, CND Monday, Glitter, Vampy with 14 Comments
Welcome to CND Monday, a new feature here on ALU. Each week I’ll be sharing a new layering combination from CND Colour & Effects to show you the versatility and creativity of the line.

This week’s CND Monday look is a reader request from Fanatic Strawberimilk. She wanted to see how Dark Ruby would look with Jade Sparkle layered on top. In my head I was thinking it sounded holiday-ish; red and green but I was way off base. Check out the combo after the jump!

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OPI Spain (aka Coleccion de España) – Primera Parte

By on August 24, 2009
in Berry, Fall 2009, Gray, Green, Nude, OPI, Red, Vampy with 36 Comments

Doesn’t “primera parte” sound much more interesting than “part one”? Ah the beauty of the Spanish language. OPI is transporting us to Spain for their fall color story and after reading your numerous pleas and comments, I have swatches of the collection for you.

I’ll be honest, I haven’t been chomping at the bit to review OPI Spain. It’s not that the colors aren’t pretty or well made, it’s just that, with a few notable exceptions, they don’t give me a thrill. Normally I pass on a collection if I’m not “in like” with a majority of the shades but I couldn’t ignore the overwhelming number of you wanting to see these colors. Check them out!

With six polishes in the berry family I chose to start with the more diverse and unique shades from the collection. Now while I’ve applauded OPI’s formula over the past year I noticed that the pigmentation with most of these are off. Even a polish as dark as Here Today… Aragon Tomorrow required three coats.

Here Today… Aragon Tomorrow is a blackened forest green. This is the season of dark green and I’m sure this color will be an instant hit. Consider this the green LPAD. I’m sure it will have that same kind of fan base. What I found odd was the grainy texture of the formula. It’s visible in the first and second coats but disappeared by coat three. If I had to compare it, Zoya Envy would be its closest relative though Envy has a brighter, less blackened base.

Suzi Skis In The Pyrenees really surprised me. I was expecting it to look black when dried but it’s actually a stunning bluish charcoal creme. I tried to find something similar in my collection but came up short. If you’re looking for “the new black” try this!

Give Me Moor! is a rich aubergine creme. It looks like there is shimmer in the bottle but it dries creamy on the nail. It’s pretty and vampy but feels recycled. Like Black Cherry Chutney redux.

Can You Tapas This? is best described by OPI as “raisin” and I won’t try to top that. This is another one that surprised me. It looks very understated in the bottle but pretty scrumptious on the nail. This color is so outside of my wheelhouse but I’m diggin it.

Bullish On OPI has a slightly browned appearance in person but it just didn’t translate in pictures. It’s definitely better than your typical cherry red creme. It feels a bit vintage a la Dita Von Teese. If you’re into reds I suggest checking this one out in person.

Barefoot in Barcelona
is deeper than your typical nude. It’s darker and more pink than last fall’s Tickle My France-y? Think of it as the cool toned version of CND Cocoa which is very yellow based. Deep nudes and mushroom hues have been popping up on celebrity toes and this shade would fit right in with the trend.
The OPI Coleccion de España is on shelves now and retails for $8.50/ea. Look for OPI at fine salons nationwide including chains like ULTA, Beauty First, Beauty Brands, Trade Secret and JCPenney.

What are we feeling about OPI Spain so far? Have you picked any of them up yet? Which ones are going on your shopping list? Sound off Fanatics!

The ALU Archives – Chanel Vamp and Metallic Vamp

By on August 6, 2009
in Chanel, Vampy with 21 Comments
The ALU Archives focuses on older, beloved shades from the All Lacquered Up stash.

I’m not a regular Craigslist reader but for the heck of it I did a search last winter for nail polish. Much to my surprise there was a listing for a box of random polish for only $5. When I found out the seller lived two streets from me, I figured it couldn’t hurt to check it out. Let me say, it was TOTALLY worth it. I found a couple treasures in that box including a bottle of Chanel Metallic Vamp. Score!

Check out this fun discontinued find along with the current version of Vamp after the jump!


Chanel Vamp first hit the scene in the early 90s and was an instant sell-out hit. Uma Thurman wearing it in Pulp Fiction only added it its cult status. Though back then Vamp was a creme. Then in 1995 they released Metallic Vamp and Very Very Vamp as sister shades similar to how there are multiple “Satins” in the Le Vernis lineup.

A few years back Chanel relaunched Vamp in the US but with shimmer. They also released a creme European version with the same product number (#18) only named Rouge Noir. Rouge Noir has been released here in sets but hasn’t been added to the perm lineup. So if you want the original 90s Vamp you want Rouge Noir. If you want a hint of shimmer get Vamp. Confused, you won’t be after this episode of Soap. Sorry, it just popped in my head. Did anyone else watch that show? Enough history, let’s check out the polish.

This is the current version of Vamp. It’s a deep berry with just a hint of shimmer. Though the shimmer is more apparent in the bottle than when it’s dry on the nail. For all intents and purposes, I’d consider it a creme. The formula applies perfectly. It flows so smoothly and is so well pigmented I wish I had more nails to paint.

And here’s my Craigslist gem, Metallic Vamp, a deep plum metallic. I would have paid more than $5 just for this one alone. Granted the formula isn’t at its best. It’s a bit goopy and brush stroke-y but as a collector I can overlook that. I may add a drop or two of thinner and see what happens. Regardless it’s a keeper.

Chanel Vamp retails for $23 and is available on Chanel.com and at most department stores both online and on counter.

How many of you own Vamp? Which version? Do you prefer it as a creme or shimmer? Anyone have a bottle of Very Very Vamp?

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