Friday, November 30, 2012

Pearly Whites


I was in the mood this week for an opaque white manicure, but didn't want my nails to look like I had painted them with white out. Duri Moonlight Glow, a milky white sheer polish with a pearly blue glow, was just the right polish to satisfy my craving! Two coats of Moonlight Glow gave Sally Hansen Hard As Nails Hard As Wraps White Tip On a really neat blue flash (that was quite challenging to photograph) and kept this opaque white manicure from looking like I had done my nails in my locker between 6th and 7th period. Moonlight Glow also looks great over black.


Do you have a go-to one coat white nail polish? Is there a white nail polish equivalent to Wet & Wild Black Creme? Sally Hansen Hard As Nails Hard As Wraps White Tip On is my whitest-white, but it is hardly a one-coater. It's not terribly streaky, but it is a globby mess, not a one coater, and the brush is too long. It isn't often that I reach for a white polish, but it makes for a great base and if I had one that I loved, I'd create more white based manicures.

Speaking of pearly whites, I just finished whitening my teeth...

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Two Birds Polish: Fly-Ceratops


I have another matte glitter from Two Birds and I think you're going to love it! Fly-Ceratops consists of tiny neon green specks, larger vivid blue squares, and black squares. This concoction of glitter shapes and colors is SO amazing! It's a matte glitter because the "glitter" doesn't have a reflective finish, which makes for a really awesome manicure.


Like Vel-Awesome-RaptorFly-Ceratops was a breeze to apply. The glitter flowed easily and evenly and I didn't have to fish around in the bottle to pull out the larger pieces.

Fly-Ceratops is best worn as a top coat. Here are (2) coats of Fly-Ceratops over Sephora by OPI Domestic Goddess. I received many compliments on this manicure!


I was quite intrigued by the idea of a "matte" matte glitter manicure and had to give it a try. Here are (2) coats of Fly-Ceratops over CND Asphalt (a really excellent grey) and topped with my favorite matte top coat Essie Matte About You. LOVE this!

 

Fly-Ceratops is pure fun and adds something extra to your manicure. What polish would you wear it over?

Two Birds polishes are $8.00, are 3 Free, and can be purchased on Etsy: http://www.etsy.com/shop/twobirdsonestore. Fly-Ceratops is not in stock at the moment, but I spy some AMAZING holiday colors you might want to check out. Head over to the Two Birds Facebook page for all the latest updates.

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

Monday, November 26, 2012

Inspired By: Bloomingdale's Holiday Windows 2012


I hope you had a great Thanksgiving break! Over the weekend, the city transformed into a holiday wonderland - the giant star is shining over 5th Ave, the Rockefeller Center tree is ready to be lit, and the store windows are full of dazzling spectacles which are FULL of inspiration for another season of holiday window manicures here on Gotham Polish! [last year's wrap up post]

This year the Bloomingdale's windows were inspired by Cirque du Soleil: Worlds Away.  Each window features fantastic acrobatics and had all the elements that make holiday windows so exciting - bright colors, moving parts, and lots to look at!

The window I chose to use as the inspiration for my manicure is an underwater fantasy with jellyfish acrobats floating above a dancer in a dazzling red dress.






I loved the colors in the background and came up with this gradient dot manicure. I'm quite pleased with the result - it came out exactly as I envisioned it!





navy blue base: China Glaze First Mate
pink dots: Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Hard as Wraps Magenta Creme
purple dots: China Glaze Grape Pop
blue dots: China Glaze Shower Together
aqua dots: Color Club [no name on bottle - Edie? Age of Aquarius?]

More holiday window manicures to come - can't wait to share them with you :)

See more pictures of Bloomingdale's holiday windows...

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Cirque Objet d'Art Collection Part 2: Au, Galinda, Hellebore, Lapis, and XX


Click here for Part 1 and a bit of an introduction to this collection :)
Cirque’s sophomore release, Objet d’Art, consists of 11 opulent colors that exude luxury and decadence. Inspired by works of art, such as Hirst’s “For the Love of God” and McQueen’s “Savage Beauty” exhibition, the collection features a multitude of finishes from vibrant micro glitters to sparkling neutrals, all suited to creating an art piece on one’s own canvas.
Part 2 - aka glitters and magical topcoats! In this post, I will review Au, Galinda, Hellebore, Lapis, and XX. Here is my post with reviews of Book of Shadows, Cape Liz, Curiosity, Cypress, Lonesome George, and Planet Caravan.

Au


Oh, Au! What says 'extravagant' more than painting your nails with 23 karat gold? Gold topcoats are a huge trend right now and Au seems to be one of the best out there. The big gold flakes were surprisingly easy to apply - no 'fishing out' needed. I used (1) coat and then filled in some spots that I thought could use a little more. The Gold Rush boys better not hear about this trend* - I think there is more gold in this bottle than they found in Season 1 up in Alaska. If you haven't added a gold topper to your collection, take a good look at Au.

*No turbo trommels or 100,000 pound excavators were broken in the making of this manicure.

 '
Au over Curiosity

Au over Planet Caravan

Galinda


Galinda is the stuff nail polish dreams are made of (mine, at least!) Silvery white hexagonal pieces of different sizes float a midst pink and blue micro shimmer to create a frosty and ethereal manicure. Doesn't this look like delicate snow falling from the sky? Galinda is very easy to apply and I used (1) coat. LOVE!

Galinda over Cape Liz

Hellebore


Did you know hellebore is a species of flowers, many of which are poisonous? I didn't! When I looked up images of hellebore (hellebores?), the resemblance to Hellebore the polish was quite striking - the grass green glitter with  just a dash of pink glitter captures the flowers quite well, minus the glitter ;) There are some larger green glitter pieces in the polish that add some complexity to the texture. Hellebore is very unique and would make an interesting non-traditional accent nail color. I used (3) coats below, but in real life I would only use (2) as the light box tends to expose bald spots much more than real lighting would reveal.


Lapis


Lapis is for everyone who dreams of blue glitter polish! This shade of blue is so rich and vivid. There are some brighter and deeper toned colors mixed in which really make this multi-faceted. The glitter in Lapis isn't as concentrated as the glitter in Hellebore and I used (3) coat. This is the polish used on the skull in Cirque's promotional material (shown at the top of this post and also below).


XX


*Speechless* XX is an amazing glitter topcoat made up of hexagonal and square shaped holographic glitter in varying sizes, a dash of rectangular holo glitter, and teeny tiny glitter. In these photos, the glitter appears to be a solid color but in real life you would see that it's very reflective and color shifting. XX is easy to apply - I used (1) coat and added a few more dabs of glitter where I felt it would look better. XX over black is stunning. A cool pink or a vivid sky blue would also look lovely with XX, as the holographic glitter has a pastel look to is. XX is so much fun and one of my favorite polishes in this collection.


XX over Wet & Wild Black Creme


Here is a close up shot of these five polish bottles and Annie's Lapis painted skull image (via Cirque's Facebook page):




It's clear that much thought went into creating each of the eleven polishes in the Objet d'Art Collection. Annie understands what nail polish lovers want to see and has given us even more colors to adore and enjoy wearing.

I'd love to hear what you think! Which colors are going on your wish list? How would you wear Au, Galinda, and XX?

Cirque polishes can be purchased online: http://www.cirquecolors.com/objet-dart-collection/GalindaHelleboreLapis, and XX retail for $13. Au retails for $28.

About Cirque
Creator, Annie Pham, sought to develop nail polish colors that transcend those of conventional brands. By experimenting with unique pigments and raw materials, a distinctive handcrafted product was born. Cirque products are 3-free, which means it does not contain the toxic trio of toluene, formaldehyde and dibutyl phthalate. They are also scented with lavender and clary sage essential oils to lend hands a subtle scent as the polish dries.

For more information about Cirque, please contact: info@cirquecolors.com.

Be sure to check out Cirque's Facebook page for news and updates.

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

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Cirque Objet d'Art Collection Part 1: Book of Shadows, Cape Liz, Curiosity, Cypress, Lonesome George, and Planet Caravan


The sophomore collection from New York City based nail polish line Cirque is nothing short of amazing. If you're not familiar with the brand, Cirque is an artisanal line of hand-blended nail polish made in New York by Annie Pham. The premiere Dark Horse collection received high praise from nail polish lovers around the world and established Cirque as a breakout independent brand to watch. When I heard Annie was creating a new collection, I could not wait to see what she would come up with next!
Cirque’s sophomore release, Objet d’Art, consists of 11 opulent colors that exude luxury and decadence. Inspired by works of art, such as Hirst’s “For the Love of God” and McQueen’s “Savage Beauty” exhibition, the collection features a multitude of finishes from vibrant micro glitters to sparkling neutrals, all suited to creating an art piece on one’s own canvas.
For the Objet d'Art collection, Annie created eleven new polishes! In this post, I will review Book of Shadows, Cape Liz, Curiosity, Cypress, Lonesome George, and Planet Caravan. A few of the polishes dried matte and were photographed with butter LONDON Hardwear P.D. Quick Topcoat, which I will note.

Book of Shadows


Book of Shadows is a metallic lavender with a bright foil finish that doesn't show any brush strokes. The formula was on the thin side and I used (3) coats. I love this look - it's a really flattering shade and a great alternative to a true silver foil.



Cape Liz


Cape Liz is a stormy desaturated sky blue with pink, blue, and icy white iridescent shimmer (which was difficult to photograph). I love how the flecks appear frozen in the polish and add elegance. The formula was thick but not opaque. I used (3) coats here as the light box was a bit unforgiving, but in real life I would wear (2). Shown with topcoat.




Curiosity


Curiosity is a bright cherry red with golden flecks. On the nail, the flecks appear less gold and instead look like glassy red flecks. This was quite pigmented and I used (2) coats. Curiosity dries almost to a matte finish and I used (2) coats of topcoat to add shine and smooth out some of the bumpy flecks.



Cypress


Cypress is a rosy-peach holo that glows from within. I think this is most intense holo of Cirque's holo polishes! The formula was thin and I used (3) coats. Cypress would look lovely on ladies with cooler skin tones - with my coloring, I felt it accentuated out the redness in my fingers.


 
Cypress, direct sunlight

This photo taken in the sun is the most color accurate swatch:



Lonesome George


Lonesome George is a leafy green ("Jungle Green", in Crayola crayon-terms) holo. This one was quite pigmented and I was pleased with the results after (2) coats. The holo isn't as strong as Cypress but still adds a lovely effect. Green holo nail polish seems to have a cult following and I think the fan base will love Lonesome George! Shown with topcoat.


Lonesome George, direct sunlight


Planet Caravan


*GASP!!!* Planet Caravan is a magical (dare I say... psychedelic?) polish with large pinky-purple duo-chrome flecks that flash orange in a deep purple base. I was very happy that this polish looks as wonderful on the nail as it does in the bottle. The formula was great and I used (2) coats. Planet Caravan dries to just about a completely matte finish and is shown here with topcoat.




Here is a close up shot of these six polish bottles:


And that's not all - here are FIVE more polishes in the Objet d'Art collection! Update: click here for part 2. Are any of these polishes going on your wish list?

Cirque polishes can be purchased online: http://www.cirquecolors.com/objet-dart-collection/Book of ShadowsCape LizCuriosity, and Planet Caravan retail for $13. Cypress and Lonesome George (the holos) retail for $15.

About Cirque
Creator, Annie Pham, sought to develop nail polish colors that transcend those of conventional brands. By experimenting with unique pigments and raw materials, a distinctive handcrafted product was born. Cirque products are 3-free, which means it does not contain the toxic trio of toluene, formaldehyde and dibutyl phthalate. They are also scented with lavender and clary sage essential oils to lend hands a subtle scent as the polish dries.

For more information about Cirque, please contact: info@cirquecolors.com.

Be sure to check out Cirque's Facebook page for news and updates.

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

Friday, November 16, 2012

Weekend Shopping: butter LONDON for goop.com, CIRQUE Objet d'Art, the Color Club holos have landed, and more!


A few things have changed around here this week. If you read Gotham Polish in a reader, you might want to check out the site. I made some pretty big design changes that I'm quite pleased with :) I also created a Facebook page so I can interact even more with readers and fellow bloggers. Hope to see you over there!

Let's talk polish! There is no shortage of new polishes available this weekend. What's on your list?

CIRQUE's new collection Objet d'Art is available today online. I posted a sneak peek here and hope to have swatches up soon :)

US readers! butter LONDON created an exclusive trio off three new colors for goop.com! Buy the set here. The mossy green Hampstead Heath looks quite interesting.

The polishes from the Cult Nails Behind Closed Doors Collection are available individually today on http://www.cultnails.com/ and according to Maria's blog, it's the best selling collection yet. Congrats, Maria and the Cult Nails team!

At last - the Color Club Halo Hues have landed at Ricky's stores! I picked up Blue Heaven and am in love.

Did you know you can buy Top Shop nail polish online from Nordstrom? The cream polishes are $10 and the glitters are $12.

You can also buy Deborah Lippmann Cleopatra in New York from Barney's online. Link!

...speaking of Deborah Lippmann... have you seen the holiday trios? STUNNING!

While it's listed in the latest Ulta flyer as an Ulta exclusive, Essentials on 33rd and 3rd has a few bottles of OPI Man with the Golden Gun. PS - they also had a couple of these on the counter in the front!

Happy weekend everyone :)

This post contains affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Color Club Halo Hues: "Blue Heaven"

Camera settings: automatic with flash. Post-editing: Post-editing: "Auto levels", set to 50% opacity

I stopped by Ricky's on Monday for no reason except I had some time to kill on my lunch break. Much to my surprise, there was a FULL display of the Color Club "Halo Hues" holo collection sitting out on the counter! After snapping some display pictures for Twitter and Facebook (yes, I'm on Facebook finally), I thought about what color holo polishes I was lacking and decided on Blue Heaven.

Blue Heaven is a powder blue hue with a strong linear holo. I love how soft this blue shade looks. The holo is quite intense and it shows up nicely inside. I am wearing (2) coats of Blue Heaven in all pictures in this post over butter LONDON 'Nail Foundation' Flawless Basecoat (received for review - disclosure policy here) and topped with Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat.

This is Blue Heaven seen in my light box. My light sources are a mix: I use a direct incandescent light, a diffused incandescent light, and a diffused halogen (because that's what I had around my apartment when my boyfriend built it).


In direct mid-day sunlight, Blue Heaven comes alive and strongly flashes a rainbow. These photos were taken around noon with an iPhone 5.

 


This photo was taken with flash (camera setting: 'automatic'):


What makes Blue Heaven a real winner is the formula. Until now, the most linear holo I owned was Layla Hologram Mercury Twilight. For those who haven't used a Layla holo, the application and formula is notoriously known as something to tolerate. The dense holo pigment has a tendency to clump on the brush, they apply patchy, show all the ridges in your nails, and don't play well with base coats. While this sounds rough, the Layla holos are so pretty in the end I can overlook these application issues :) That in mind, I was thrilled to discover that Blue Heaven applied perfectly- just like a "regular" polish - and is actually almost a one-coater, making it the most opaque holo I own. Blue Heaven is so amazing I'm considering going back to Ricky's and getting more...

A word about the price. The Halo Hues polishes retail for $10. Maybe you disagree, but I think the $10 price point borders on making this a high-end collection. However, these are actually some of the cheapest holo polishes out there. For example the Layla holos are $15.50 (and are smaller), the OPI DS holo polishes are $12, and the China Glaze OMG Collection is going for a ridiculous price on eBay.

The Halo Hues collection is available at Ricky's stores now (Tweet @Rickys_NYC if you want to confirm they are available in your local store) and will also be available on their website soon. Don't live near a Ricky's? You can buy them online now from Color Club and 8ty8 Beauty.

By the way... way to go Ricky's for stocking this collection. I heard that it was because of passionate NYC nail polish lovers that they decided to order this collection!

Bonus video, complete with street noise and a pigeon:

Sunday, November 11, 2012

butter LONDON Holiday 2012: Fairy Cake


Quick note - Gotham Polish is now on Facebook!

If Ellie Goulding's song "Lights" was a nail polish, Fairy Cake would be it. From butter LONDON's holiday 2012 collection, Fairy Cake is a "full coverage, silvery lacquer with multi-colored iridescent glitter in a light grey base". Glitter polish is always a hit during the holidays, and this is quite a complex one. While the iridescent (holo?) glitter throws around a rainbow of colors, the main color falls in the middle of being gold and silver at the same time.

The formula surprised me and was much more of a "full coverage" glitter than I expected. The thickness reminded me of the Milani one-coat glitters. Fairy Cake also dries quickly but unfortunately not in the good way - as I painted my nails, the brush became quite stiff. I had to give it some time back in the bottle to soften up before finishing my other hand. Despite the coverage being thick, after (3) coats and I still found some bald spots. Even after applying a thick top, the finish is gritty to the touch . Be careful not to snag your sweaters on your glittery nails!



Fairy Cake with flash:


Here is (1) coat of Fairy Cake over Jack the Lad (review here). Fairy Cake is definitely more of a "full-coverage" glitter than a dainty glitter top coat.


Fairy Cake makes an excellent polish to use in a glitter gradient. Here is Fairy Cake sponged over All Hail the Queen (instructions here). I'm not really crazy about this particular combo, but you get the idea!


According to butter LONDON, "fairy cake" is what the British call cupcakes. Any British readers care to validate? ;)

The Holiday 2012 lacquer collection includes Fiddlesticks, Scuppered, Jack the Lad, Fairy Cake, and Scallywag. butter LONDON polishes retail for $14.

In New York City, my favorite retailers of Butter products are C.O. Bigelow, Ricky's, and now Henri Bendel. There are many more! Here is a list of retailers in New York City that carry Butter nail polish. Buy online at http://www.butterlondon.com/, Nordstrom, and Beauty.com. Also part of this cute glitter trio for $36.

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

Friday, November 9, 2012

Weekend Shopping: new Cult Nails collection, get an ombre manicure at Bloomingdales, Snooki's nail polish line, and more!


What a week. Just as we are trying to return to our normal routines after the hurricane, New York City was covered in a few inches of really heavy and slippery snow. This weekend will be well spent cleaning and doing laundry and all the other chores that piled up while we were without power!

But let's get distracted momentarily and talk about some news in the nail polish world :)

If you're in the neighborhood, stop by the 59th St Bloomingdale's tonight from 5PM - 8PM for an ombre manicure. Info here.

Love this - Kate Spade New York 'Sprinkles' Mini Nail Polish Set

Have you seen this first look at CIRQUE's new collection Objet d'Art?

Snooki has a nail polish collection on HSN. No comment.

Bauble Bar & Essie's collaboration is a color-match made in heaven.

The Cult Nails Beyond Closed Doors collection is available for pre-order TODAY!

Check out the website for Alpha Nail, a new line of nail polish for men. I'm a big fan of reason #4.

Are you looking for ways to help New Yorkers in need after Hurricane Sandy? Here are ways you can volunteer: http://www.nycservice.org/#s

Have a great weekend, everyone!

This post contains an affiliate link. Read my full disclosure policy here.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Two Birds Polish: Vel-Awesome-Raptor


I have another awesome Two Birds polish to share with you! Vel-Awesome-Raptor is not only a fantastic name, but a fantastic "matte glitter" (glitter that is not shiny) made up of teeny tiny neon green and black specks. Vel-Awesome-Raptor isn't a dense one-coat glitter, but it also isn't a runny mess - it covers well and evenly. I love this speckled and gritty look! This is the kind of manicure that will have you staring at your nails in wonder.

Three coats of Vel-Awesome-Raptor over Mattese Elite Playa de Chrome

Here is one coat of Vel-Awesome-Raptor over the stone-washed cream polish Playa de Chrome by Mattese Elite, Ricky's discontinued house brand (Essie Playa del Platinum is very similar). You can see how well Vel-Awesome-Raptor covers. It's a great layering polish, isn't it? I'd like to try it over a blue or purple sometime.



I'm totally loving Vel-Awesome-Raptor. It creates such a fun look, applied easily, and I don't have anything else like it.

Two Birds polishes are $8.00, are 3 Free, and can be purchased on Etsy: http://www.etsy.com/shop/twobirdsonestore. As of today, Vel-Awesome-Raptor is in stock :) Head over to the Two Birds Facebook page for all the latest updates.

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

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

New CIRQUE Collection: Objet d'Art

Have you visited CIRQUE's website lately? If not, you may want to head over there ASAP to check out a preview of the latest polishes from the Objet d'Art collection! Need more motivation? There are holos...

http://www.cirquecolors.com/introducing-the-objet-dart-collection/

The Objet d’Art collection will be available online at www.cirquecolors.com starting November 16, 2012. Prices range from $13-28. For other retailers, please check the “Stockists” page of the website.

I'm super excited about XX and Planet Caravan! Which colors are on your wish list?

Monday, November 5, 2012

Zoya at NYFW: Zang Toi Spring 2013 Runway and Custom Colors


Nail polish lovers eagerly awaited the debut of Zoya's custom colors at Zang Toi's Spring 2013 fashion show. The creative minds at Zoya partnered with the designer to develop nail polishes to debut on the runway and release online in a limited edition collection.

The colors and fabrics used in the "ice princess" ballgowns - a pastel yellow, a cool toned lavender and a baby soft pink - were the inspiration for Zoya's custom colors. Three polishes were created: Piaf, an icy lemon, Julie, an icy cool lilac, and Gei Gei, an icy baby pink. All three shades have the micro diamond particle shimmer finish and perfectly capture the look of Zang Toi's ice princess.

While three polishes were created, the final look for the runway was the lavender polish Julie worn with a silver French tip Trixie (which was renamed Ice Princess for the occasion). I have Julie, Gie Gie, and Ice Princess to share with you!

Julie is a pastel lavender with fine micro shimmer. The formula was a little thinner than I expected, and I used (3) coats for full coverage. I love how soft this shade is. The shimmer gives Julie a little something else to set it apart from a pastel cream.


When I saw the manicurists painting perfectly silver tips on the models, I thought "there's no way I could do that". But Trixie/Ice Princess is so pigmented that it was actually quite easy. Yes, you read that right - I free-handed the tips! I painted a wide silver bar like the models wore, but a thinner silver tip would also look great.

 

Gie Gie is a baby soft pink with fine micro shimmer. The shimmer appears stronger than in Julie and gives Gie Gie a more pearly looking finish. Gie Gie is sheer so I used 3 coats. I love how soft and girly this polish is!


Take a look at the dresses that inspired the polishes:

 

 


If you ordered the Zang Toi polishes, you also received the yellow polish Piaf. Did you grab the Zang Toi polishes before they sold out? If not, hopefully Zoya will re-release some of these shades as part of their spring collection :)

See backstage pictures here.

Keep reading for more runway pictures (including my favorite dress)...