Thursday, August 28, 2014

RickyColor "Hot Spots" Summer 2014 Collection

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

Summer is not over! There are still four glorious days left until Labor Day, aka the unofficial yet generally accepted end of summer. Four days to have the #bestsummerever and get sick on watermelon, develop an ear infection from swimming in the public pool, eat sand as you attempt to body surf, and end up with a rash from poison ivy. And four days to (seasonally) rock an obnoxious neon glitter mani.

New from RickyColor (local beauty/inappropriate birthday card shop Ricky's NYC's house brand of nail polish) for summer 2014 is the Hot Spots collection, made up of five neon satin glitter polishes. The formula was consistently easy to apply and I was able to pull lots of glitter from the bottle without any weird clumping. Let's take a look!


Governors Island Circus


Governors* Island Circus is a neon pink and white satin glitter nail polish. I'm wearing one coat over American Apparel Neon Yellow.


*that's right - it really is "Governors Island", not Governor's or Governors' Island


Sunday Morning Murray Hill


Sunday Morning Murray Hill is a neon pink, neon yellow, and white satin glitter nail polish. Nope, there's no orange in here - it's just a trick an illusion! I'm wearing one coat over OCC Wasabi.



Off Duty


Off Duty is a neon yellow and white satin glitter nail polish. I'm wearing one coat over American Apparel Neon Coral.



Central Park Boat Basin


Central Park Boat Basin is a bright blue and white satin glitter nail polish. Side note: is there actually a Central Park Boat Basin? There's the Central Park Boathouse and 79th St Boat Basin... anyway, your SAT word of the day is "portmanteau". I'm wearing one coat of Central Park Boat Basin over Sinful Colors Dream On.



Sample Sale Line


Raise your hand if you've ever waited in line at a sample sale. Got any good stories? My experiences have been pretty civil - I find getting on and off the subway during rush hour far worse. Sample Sale Line is a neon pink, bright blue, and white satin glitter nail polish. I'm wearing one coat over Cirque Colors Memento Mori.


These neon glitters are so much fun and I appreciate the hyperlocal names. RickyColor nail polishes retail for $6.50 each and in stores I've seen a 2/$10 promo. The formula is formaldehyde, toluene, and DBP free. RickyColor nail polish is sold in Ricky's stores (store locator) and online.

Go have the best last four days of summer ever!

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Cirque Colors Back to Basics: "Memento Mori" and "Carpe Diem"

Cirque Colors Back to Basics: "Memento Mori" and "Carpe Diem"
Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

An arsenal of mani basics is a must-have for every beauty maven. We are excited to introduce our Back to Basics collection which include our essential Holdfast™ Base Coat and Liquid Laminate™ Top Coat. Additionally, two new creme colors will be available which make the perfect backdrop to our festive glitter lacquers. [from the press release]

With the release of the Back to Basics collection, Cirque Colors is on its way to becoming a one-stop indie nail polish powerhouse. With so many colorful glitters available, having the "basics" - a black cream and a white cream - is a Cirque Colors' purist's dream come true. What better way to complement an interesting indie glitter than with a black or white base? I'm still testing the Holdfast™ Base Coat and Liquid Laminate™ Top Coat, but today let's talk about Cirque Colors' debut cream color nail polishes: Memento Mori and Carpe Diem!


Memento Mori


Memento Mori, with a grim translation of "remember that you will die" (and the name of an X-Files episode), is an amazing one coat black. The formula was easy to apply and will make you forget this is a hand-mixed nail polish. There isn't anything more you could ask for in a black cream nail polish. Memento Mori dries to a decently shiny finish, however I still added a coat of Liquid Laminate top coat.

Cirque Colors Memento Mori

Here's Memento Mori with a glitter gradient of Electric Circus:

Cirque Colors Memento Mori and Electric Circus


Carpe Diem


Carpe Diem is a stark white cream nail polish. As found with many white polishes, the first coat is streaky. But with Carpe Diem, all is forgiven with the second coat and any imperfections disappear. My expectations for a hand-mixed white nail polish were low and I was prepared for the worst, but instead I am pleasantly surprised to report that Carpe Diem is one of the better white nail polishes I've tried! I'm wearing two coats with Liquid Laminate top coat.

Cirque Colors Carpe Diem

Here's Carpe Diem with two coats of Au:

Cirque Colors Carpe Diem and Au

Though my expectations weren't very high for hand-mixed cream nail polishes (especially white!), Memento Mori and Carpe Diem won me over. They are as good if not better than commercial cream nail polishes. Memento Mori and Carpe Diem will delight the indie nail polish purists of the world and will be a welcome addition to anyone's collection.

Memento Mori and Carpe Diem retail for $13 each and are available online at CirqueColors.com. You can also purchase them in a set with Cirque's new Holdfast™ Base Coat and Liquid Laminate™ Top Coat for $36. Refer to the Stockists page for participating retailers.

Cirque Colors Back to Basics: "Memento Mori" and "Carpe Diem"

About
Cirque Colors™ is line of hand-blended nail lacquers based in New York. The name Cirque, meaning ring or circle, represents the color wheel and the endless color possibilities in the continuum. Founder/Creative Director, Annie Pham, sought to develop colors that transcend those of conventional brands by experimenting with unique pigments and raw materials. All nail lacquers are 3-free, which means they do not contain toluene, formaldehyde or dibutyl phthalate (DBP). They are also scented with a blend essential oils that leave a light floral aroma after the polish dries. Made in the USA. For more information, please email info@cirquecolors.com.

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Maybelline: "Plum As You Are" & "Fuchsia Fever" (from the Fall 2014 "Fashion Rocks" collection)

Maybelline Plum As You Are and Fuchsia Fever

I went to Harmon just for mascara*. But of course, there was a brand new Maybelline display out and I instantly "needed" two items: a nail polish called Plum As You Are and a lipstick called Fuchsia Fever. I was in such a post-work fog that I didn't pay attention to name of the collection - yep, my eyes went right to the polish - but now I know thanks to Nouveau Cheap that these are from the Fall 2014 Fashion Rocks collection (check out the display pictures here).

Let's take a look!


Plum As You Are


Let's just get this out of the way right up front: Plum As You Are is not as awesome as the bottle may lead you to believe. The pink shimmer sadly does not really show unless you're looking for it, and even then it's very faint. The base color is a bit of a chameleon - it's dark but not black, however it's not exactly "just" a dark grey. It has some purple, brown, and olive tones. Sounds weird, I know. Maybe that's what the (hidden) shimmer does? Picture Chanel Paradoxal (or any of it's dupes) - now, take away the shimmer - and that's pretty much what Plum As You Are looks like. The pigmentation is decent but I still needed two coats for an opaque finish. And speaking of application - the neck of the little 0.23 fl oz Color Show bottle felt long, so it took me a few tries to get the feel for where the nail polish was inside the bottle (aka how far to stick the brush in). Just something to get used to, I guess. Plum As You Are dries to a decently shiny finish, but I'm still testing Cirque Colors' new Liquid Laminate top coat so I'm wearing top coat in these swatches.

Maybelline Plum As You Are

Maybelline Plum As You Are

Plum As You Are y u no look like this on my nails!

Maybelline Plum As You Are

Plum As You Are is an OK polish but it's not worth going out of your way to track down. Don't be sad if you can't find it at all.

The lipstick, however, is a big win. I really love Maybelline's Color Sensational line, which is why I was so quick to pick up Fuchsia Fever. After trying Pink Pop (designated a "Vivid" and in a neon orange tube), I went back and added two more Vivids - Fuchsia Flash and Vivid Rose - to my conservatively sized lipstick stash. I find the formulas smooth, easy to apply, and long lasting. How many hours, you ask? Well... let's just say I put it on before work and it still looks OK until I eat lunch. These lipsticks don't wear off in an hour or two. I don't find them too drying, although I have noticed that after hours of wear my lips start tasting soapy. I don't know what that's about.

Even though Fuchsia Fever isn't considered a "Vivid", it's still super bright!

Maybelline Fuchsia Fever

There's even a little bit of shimmer action happening (but don't look too hard for it on your lips):


If you know the Color Sensational lipsticks well, you might be thinking that Fuchsia Fever looks like Fuchsia Flash - and you'd be right! Compared to Fuchsia Flash, Fuchsia Fever is slightly less intense, has a tiny bit of shimmer, and is a touch more purple. But really, you probably don't need both.

Maybelline Fuchsia Fever vs Fuchsia Flash

I'm a little irked though because I thought Fuchsia Fever was a new lipstick, and maybe even a limited edition one. It turns out that aside from the nail polishes, the rest of the products taking up space in the Fashion Rocks display are from the permanent line. I'm very happy to have it, but I wouldn't have impulse bought it if I knew I could get it any day.

I found Maybelline's Fashion Rocks display at Harmon Face Values in Chelsea. The nail polish was $2.99 and the lipstick was $5.49.

*Is the Cover Girl Last Blast Luxe line no more? I haven't seen it anywhere recently!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Cirque Colors NYC Sample Sale: August 21st - 24th

Cirque Colors sample sale

Calling all New York City Cirque Colors fans! Cirque Colors will be holding a sample sale at International Playground's Lower East Side boutique from August 21st - 24th. Creator Annie Pham says that you can expect to find "deeply discounted bottles of samples, overstock, discontinued and exclusive colors for only $7.00 each" - but while supplies last!

I don't know what polishes will or won't be available, but the last time I hit up a Cirque Colors sale with exclusive polishes I came home with these gorgeous colors (#justsayin).

International Playground's LES boutique is located at 13 Stanton St in Manhattan. I'd love to hear what you find if you go!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Ruby Wing Color Changing Polish: "Sweet Fantasy" Spring 2014 Collection

Ruby Wing Sweet Fantasy
Ruby Wing "Sweet Fantasy" collection - inside!

Ruby Wing Sweet Fantasy
Ruby Wing "Sweet Fantasy" collection - outside!

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

For spring 2014 Ruby Wing released the Sweet Fantasy collection and introduced six new sunlight-activated color change nail polishes. Not familiar with Ruby Wing? Ruby Wing is the sibling brand to Color Club, with Forsythe Cosmetics being the parent company. Ruby Wing nail polishes are all color changing (the sunlight-activated kind).

In each swatch, I'm wearing one polish on my pointer/ring fingers and another on my middle/pinky fingers. I put the inside and outside pictures side by side so you can see the color change without scrolling up and down - the inside picture is on the left and the outside picture is on the right. Let's take a look!


Silk Sheets & Kitten Heels


Ruby Wing Silk Sheets Kitten Heels

Silk Sheets (pointer & ring fingers)

Inside: light pastel peach with fine golden shimmer
Outside: darker peachy-mauve with fine golden shimmer

The formula of Silk Sheets is sheer, which is somewhat expected for this kind of shimmery polish. I used three coats. The shimmer isn't concealed when this polish changes to the darker shade in sunlight.

Kitten Heels (middle & pinky fingers)

Inside: bright (almost neon) pink cream; very close to purple
Outside: bright (almost neon) reddish-orange cream

Kitten Heels is my favorite Ruby Wing polish to date. The formula is great and is almost opaque in one coat. I used two. Kitten Heels dries to a semi-matte finish. I adore the "indoor" color!


In Your Dreams & Deepest Desire


Ruby Wing In Your Dreams Deepest Desire

In Your Dreams (pointer & ring fingers)

Inside: pale greyish-periwinkle cream
Outside: darker and more saturated periwinkle cream

In Your Dreams required two thick coats, which actually isn't terrible considering the indoor color is so light.

Deepest Desire (middle & pinky fingers)

Inside: shimmery warm olive green
Outside: shimmery orangey bronze

Deepest Desire was easy to apply. I'm wearing two coats.


Dolled Up & Centerfold


Ruby Wing Dolled Up Centerfold

Dolled Up (pointer & ring fingers)

Inside: large blue, red, and yellow hexagonal glitter and smaller red glitter in a fleshy-pink base
Outside: the base color turns to a darker pink shade

Centerfold (middle & pinky fingers)

Inside: magenta pink jelly with silver and black hexagonal glitter and smaller silver glitter
Outside: the base color turns to a dark eggplant purple and the glitter looks blue

Gold star to Ruby Wing for creating two indie-esque glitter polishes, but I won't hide my dislike for them. In the bottle they look amazing, on the nail inside they look just OK, but outside they really don't look great. In sunlight, the base color turns dark and all but completely covers up the glitter. Formula-wise, these aren't too difficult to apply. There is so much glitter packed in each bottle that you won't have any trouble extracting it. But you will need to implement the "plop and blob" method for best results. I'm wearing two "coats" of plopping and blobbing.

With creams, shimmers, and glitters, the Sweet Fantasy collection has something for everyone. While Dolled Up and Centerfold aren't my jam, Kitten Heels has become a new favorite.

Ruby Wing nail polishes retail for $10 and are available online. In New York City, I've seen them at Ricky's.

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Cirque Colors: The Kontiki Collection Swatches & Reviews

Cirque Colors Kontiki Collection
Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

Whether you're sipping on mojitos, jet-setting across the country or catching up on some well-deserved R&R, explore our latest release that will keep your nails looking hot in the heat. Inspired by endless summer days, we've created 3 limited edition lacquers each with a special color-shifting shimmer in a vivid translucent base. If you like Coronation, you will love The Kontiki Collection. [from the press release]

The three new nail polishes of the Kontiki Collection from Cirque Colors are everything we love about the Brooklyn-based independent nail polish brand: unique, intriguing, and complex. Each polish is a vivid hue packed with color-shifting shimmer - a combination so fascinating you won't want to stop looking at your nails. But there's another adjective for the Kontiki Collection worth closely taking note of: limited edition. As you look at these pretties, keep the release date of August 5th in mind so you don't miss out if any speak to you :)

The more complex the polish, the harder it is to fully capture in a photograph! But, I spent a great deal of time trying and hope you enjoy :) Two quick notes about all three swatches:

  • While many Cirque Colors polishes dry to a semi-matte finish, the three Kontiki polishes dry to a decently shiny finish. I was eager to test out Cirque's new Liquid Laminate top coat (which I will tell you all about after giving it a thorough testing!) so each swatch is shown with top coat.
  • If you're looking closely, you might see what appear to be tiny black spots in a few pictures. I assure you there aren't any black bits in these polishes - the "black spots" are the holo bits not getting along with the camera :)


Dear Dahlia


Dear Dahlia is a deep fuchsia polish with a green shimmer that shifts to blue and sparse tiny bits of holo. The semi-sheer jelly formula allows the shimmer to show through and was easy to work with. I'm wearing three coats. If you're viewing this post on a Mac, this color pink isn't as bright as it might look.

Cirque Colors Dear Dahlia

Cirque Colors Dear Dahlia


Thicker Than Water


Thicker Than Water is a "Caribbean sea" shade of turquoise polish with a warm golden shimmer that shifts to green and sparse tiny bits of holo. The formula is semi-sheer but very controllable. The pigmentation was good and I only needed two coats, although if you have longer nails, you might want to do three. The base color of Thicker Than Water is slightly greener than Cerrillos.

Cirque Colors Thicker Than Water

Cirque Colors Thicker Than Water


Midsummer Night


Midsummer Night is a vivid deep royal blue polish with a pinky-red shimmer that shifts to green and sparse tiny bits of holo. This is the kind of blue that some might consider purple. I found the formula to be slightly more runny than the other two; however, the pigmentation was good and I only needed two coats (if you have longer nails, you might want to do three). While the blue/purple color is quite vivid, it isn't as intense as it photographed (I even tried to tone it down in Photoshop!). My camera really liked this color. And if you're viewing this on an iPad, it's probably jumping out of your screen right now.

Cirque Colors Midsummer Night

Cirque Colors Midsummer Night

Just look at all that shimmery goodness! It's not as intense on the nail as it appears in the bottle, but you can get a better idea of the color of the shimmer.

Cirque Colors Kontiki Collection

I am delighted by the Kontiki Collection and each polish looks even more magical in person. Keep in mind that the Kontiki Collection is limited edition so if you're thinking about picking any up, you might not want to wait.

The Kontiki Collection will be available online at CirqueColors.com on August 5, 2014. Each polish retails for $13. Refer to the Stockists page for participating retailers.

Cirque Colors Kontiki Collection

Oh and PS - this collection debuts new packaging with great updates. The sleek black boxes are now equipped with a port hole to peek at the color inside. The words CIRQUE COLORS have a reflective holographic finish. Tres luxe, n'est-ce pas?

Cirque Colors Kontiki Collection

About
Cirque Colors™ is line of hand-blended nail lacquers based in New York. The name Cirque, meaning ring or circle, represents the color wheel and the endless color possibilities in the continuum. Founder/Creative Director, Annie Pham, sought to develop colors that transcend those of conventional brands by experimenting with unique pigments and raw materials. All nail lacquers are 3-free, which means they do not contain toluene, formaldehyde or dibutyl phthalate (DBP). They are also scented with a blend essential oils that leave a light floral aroma after the polish dries. Made in the USA. For more information, please email info@cirquecolors.com.

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Incoco's "Tribal Beats" Summer 2014 Nail Polish Appliqués

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

Just when I thought we'd seen the last of the new products for summer 2014, the new six piece Tribal Beats collection from Incoco landed in my mailbox! And what a perfect end of summer collection this is (not that I'm in any way implying that we are nearing the end of summer). With designs that remind me of summer camp and friendship bracelets, the Tribal Beats collection bring back memories of carefree summer days that would turn into carefree summer nights. Let's take a closer look!

Desert Sunset

Desert Jewel - reminds me of bed sheets you'd find at Urban Outfitters. This one has a pearly finish.

New Directions - also has a pearly finish

Bonfire Nights

Free Spirit - another one with a pearly finish

Tribal Beats - not an Easter egg. Has a pearly finish.

The Tribal Beats collection is one of my favorite Incoco collections yet. I adore the patterns and color palette. If you haven't tried Incoco Nail Polish Appliqués, I definitely recommend them. Read about my experience with application and wear time here.

Incoco products can be purchased online: http://www.incoco.com. The designs in the Tribal Beats collection retail for $8.99 each. For the latest, follow Incoco on Twitter and Facebook.

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.