Thursday, January 31, 2013

Mint Polish: Bleeker St. Babe

Erin and Anna have already reviewed Dirty Shirley and Original Mint, so now I'm showing the third of the polishes Mint sent for us to review, a gorgeous dusty sage green called Bleeker St. Babe. We all know how much I love greens, but this one is extra special! When I first opened the box and saw the color I thought it was just like all the other greens I've reviewed lately, but it was not (and look for a comparison post soon to see why not.)
Mint Bleeker St. Babe
Wow. You can see how deliciously creamy this polish is just by looking at the photo. I can't think of another polish I've used recently that had such a perfect formula — it practically poured itself on my nails and settled into shape. The only bone I have to pick with them is the description of it on their web site: "This moss gray-green, named after our favorite West Village street, is opaque, modern, and ultra glossy. Bleeker St. Babe is a gorgeous and transformative hue that changes from gray to green to purple, depending on the light. Bottle color in one coat."

Moss gray-green? Yeah, OK, I'll give them that, although I'd call it sage myself. Ultra glossy? Absolutely — no top coat in these photos. Transform from gray to green? You betcha. But transform to purple??? Not in any light in my house. There aren't even any purple shimmers in the polish that might catch the light. But I'll forgive them because this is practically perfect in every other way. Love this polish. It probably was bottle color in one coat but I did two out of habit. No top coat needed, however, and look at how glossy it is!
Label shot
Pros: The formula and application were flawless and the grayed-out green color is different from any of the other greens I have (and I have a lot!)

Cons: The limited number of colors they have available on their web site. When a polish is this good, I want ALL THE COLORS!

Overall: I'm really impressed with them and I look forward to trying more colors.

Mint polish is available at their web site,, and retails for $10. Be sure to check out their cute nail stickers, too. If you enter the code LOVEMINT2013 at checkout you will get a 30% discount! I know I'm going to be getting Lavender Macaron!

Keep up with Mint by liking them on Facebook, and following them on Tumblr, Twitter and Pinterest.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Zoya Lovely Collection- Piaf & Blu

Last month we got our hands on the new Zoya Lovely collection for the Spring and Robin showed you her picks from the collection here. Well since we share at Polished Cousins and we also don't all live in the same city, sometimes it takes us awhile to send polishes to each other! Here are my picks from the collection, Piaf and Blu

For some reason, yellow nail polishes actually work against my pale skin. To be honest, I really hate yellow. So of course, since I'm the only one of us who yellow actually works on, and we want to show you guys every polish in the best way we can, I'm the one who gets to use the yellow polishes! Zoya describes Piaf as a forsythia yellow metallic. I wouldn't necessarily describe this as metallic but there is definitely a lot of the famous Zoya glass flecks going on here. The flecks are a pretty white/gold shade. I used two coats of Piaf for the swatches below and you can see a bit of VNL (visible nail line) but I think it adds to the softness.

Zoya describes Blu as a soft delicate pale baby blue with a glossy creme finish. This is a pretty basic polish but that description is pretty much it. I was really interested in trying Blu because I'm getting married next year and I'm determined to find the perfect "something blue" shade to paint on my toes.

A lot of people were worried that Zoya was duping themselves by releasing Blu (myself included) but we were way wrong. The color I thought would be closest is Kristen but they really can't be compared. Kristen is much darker with a strong grey tint. I pulled out out all of my light blue polishes and found Essie Borrowed & Blue from their wedding collection. In the bottles, these two are identical. On the nail I realized they aren't dupes! Similar, but not the same. Though if you have one I don't think you need the other. Borrowed & Blue is a tad lighter and brighter than Blu.

Close but not quite

Pros- These two polishes gave us the same dreamy formula we are used to seeing from Zoya. 
Cons- While Piaf is a pretty color in its own way, I really hate yellow. It's not Piaf's fault though.
Overall- The Lovely Collection is giving us a nice mix of pastel cremes and shimmers that remind us all of Spring. Just looking at these pictures makes me wish it wasn't 20 degrees outside!

You can purchase Piaf here and Blu here for $8 a piece. Don't forget to like Zoya on Facebook and follow them on Twitter!

***This polish was sent for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.***

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

BB Couture

I'm pleased to present to you a new-to-us line of polishes, BB Couture and BB Couture For Men. They're a family-owned company started in 2006 and their formulas are vegan, cruelty free and free of formaldehyde, toluene, and DBP. In 2009 they pioneered a line of men's polishes, which now has over 60 colors! (But we ladies can wear them, too...) This post is covering four polishes, so it's picture heavy. Enjoy!

Let's start off with Tequila Sunrise, a fabulously juicy, frosty red-orange loaded with gold shimmers. (This is totally an Erin color and I sent it on down to her after wearing it for a couple of days myself.) The formula was a little bit sheer, but two coats covered, with only a slight visible nail line. This polish flowed on like magic and the brush was so easy to control. Loved this one! Two coats over a base coat and no top coat.
BB Couture Tequila Sunrise
See all the gold shimmers?

Label shot

Next we have Zuma Wave Rider, a pastel blue creme, although it looked more like a periwinkle or lilac shade on their web site. Formula and application were also great, although the color is awfully similar to many of the other pale blue pastels out there. Two coats over a base coat and no top coat.
BB Couture Zuma Wave Rider

Label shot
Juliet is a dusty rose creme with subtle glass flecks. So subtle that I didn't even notice them until I was editing the photos, so I didn't take a bottle shot because they didn't even show up in the bottle. They were a nice surprise on the nail, though! Again, a great formula and application. Two coats over a base coat and no top coat.
BB Couture Juliet
Label shot
Finally, here we have Eros, from the BB Couture for Men line. This is an interesting polish — a dusty green creme with gold micro glitters and very sparse dark flecks of black? dark green? The finish on this one dried a wee bit gritty, so it's totally up to you if you want to smooth it out with a top coat. I did two coats over a base coat with no top coat and it was still nice and shiny.
BB Couture for Men Eros
You can see lots of gold micro glitter and random dark specks here.
Label shot
I was really impressed with the line — the formula was great on all of the finishes, the brush is long and flares out well when you press down on the nail so the polish flows on nicely and it's easy to control. Of the four colors, Tequila Sunrise was the most different from others I've seen out on the market and it's so lickable! The names for the men's line crack me up — Intake ValveShock AbsorberBlue Steel (BWA-ha-ha-ha-ha!)

BB Couture polishes sell for $10.95 on their web site and they have a buy three, get one free offer going on until January 31st, so head on over and check them out!

**These polished were provided by the manufacturer for an unbiased review**

Monday, January 28, 2013

Mint Polish- Original Mint

The other day Erin showed you guys a gorgeous bright pink polish from Mint. As soon as she applied that mani, she texted me and Robin about how amazing the polish was. Beautiful color, dreamy formula, and awesome packaging. Yeah? I'll believe it when I see it.

Ok. Fine. Erin was right. Mint Polish is pretty much amazing. The swatches below show two coats of Original Mint over OPI Ridge Filler base coat, topped with Poshe topcoat. I could have taken these photos with only one coat but I just need to do two out of habit. Mint describes Original Mint as- Part Tiffany Blue, part spearmint candy, and 100% gorgeous. Original Mint is a statement color, and the perfect addition to any polish collection. Bottle color in one coat.

Pros- I love the rectangular bottle and brush. The brush is fat enough without applying like a mop and wide enough without being wider than my pinky nail. And of course the awesome formula and color!
Cons- While this bright minty creme isn't exactly original, I don't think I have any dupes of it in my collection. If you guys can think of any comparable colors I will try and track them down for a comparison!
Overall- I'm now obsessed with Mint polish. I want them all!! Plus the mustache and cat decals.

Mint Polish retails for $10 a piece and can be purchased through their website. They also have some adorable decals for sale for $5. Keep up with Mint by liking them on Facebook, and following them on  Tumblr, Twitter and Pinterest.

***This polish was sent for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.***

Sunday, January 27, 2013

SinfulColors Ardoise

Ardoise is another one of the polishes I got from the SinfulColors Haute Rebel collection. I've already reviewed Mauve, Beau Khaki, and Rain Storm (from when it was part of the Muse collection) but I still have several more to swatch for you. I was in the mood for something edgy so I decided on Ardoise, which I think was the only actual new color in this collection.
SinfulColors Ardoise
Ardoise reminded me of the color of ripe olives — a deep, rich black. When I was a kid and my mom served black olives at Thanksgiving I always put one on the end of each finger and popped them off into my mouth. I had no table manners whatsoever. This polish looks like ripe olives on my fingers and as I was applying it I thought, "Hmmmmmmm. What other polish reminds me of ripe olives? Could it be OPI Nein! Nein! Nein! OK Fine!?" Let's see...
Very close, but not a dupe
As you can see, Nein! is a bit paler and warmer so Ardoise is not exactly a dupe for it, but if you have one you probably don't need the other. And since Nein! is a dupe for Zoya Noot, as well as dupe for China Glaze Concrete Catwalk, if you have either of those you're still covered. But if you somehow missed out on any of these fabulous deep, rich, dark grays then run out to your nearest Walgreens and grab Ardoise from the Haute Rebel collection while it's still available!
Here's the label for ya!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

SinfulColors Seaweed

I have been on such a green kick lately, for some reason — maybe hoping it will hurry Spring along so we can get out of this cold, colorless winter? Even though I've use Seaweed in a comparison before I haven't done a full mani with it, so it was well overdue.
SinfulColors Seaweed
Seaweed came out in the summer of 2011 as part of the Adventure Island collection which, as we all know, was a dupe of... an homage to OPI's Pirates of the Caribbean collection, with Seaweed being a twin to Stranger Tides. It's a lovely, dusty, pale yellow-green that surprisingly doesn't give me zombie hands. It's a fresh, spring-y green and I love how it looks on me. It's not part of the core line but SinfulColors is constantly recycling colors in different collections so it will probably turn up again sooner or later — maybe in a St. Patrick's Day release of greens? We can hope...
Label shot
I don't know why, but this color makes me want to wear it to a wedding. Maybe because it was the color of so many bridesmaids gowns I've worn?

Friday, January 25, 2013

Rainbow Honey - Be Mine

Hi everyone!  Happy Friday!  Today I have another polish from Rainbow Honey's Sweet Talk Collection, Be Mine.  Be Mine is described as:  A lovely kiss of pink on your nails with a dusting of microshimmer and gold flecks. I'm a huge fan of microshimmer and this does not disappoint! I love the sweet pink for Valentine's Day and I think it's a wearable pink that would work on most skin tones.

I used three coats for opacity but you could probably get away with two thicker coats. I also recommend letting each coat dry for a few minutes between coats to prevent dragging. The pay off at the end is worth it! I used one thick coat of Seche Vite for a high gloss shine.

Super cute bottle top

The Sweet Talk Collection is being released on 01/25/13 at 12:01AM EST at their website and through other participating retailers. Each polish retails for $10 a piece and Rainbow Honey shared a special promo code with us to share with our readers! 

Use the code SWEETTALK$5 to receive $5 off your next Rainbow Honey order! Offer expires 02/28/13.

***This polish was sent for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.***

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Rainbow Honey The Sweet Talk Collection- XOXO

Today I have a gorgeous polish to show you from Rainbow Honey's new The Sweet Talk Collection. This collection consists of three delicate colors that scream Valentine's Day. Here is XOXO- a ravishing blend of glitters and flakes in a clear base for easy use over any manicure, in all of its macro sparkly glory.

XOXO is loaded with tiny iridescent white/gold flakes and lots of small and medium red hexes. I wanted to try layering XOXO over a few different shades to give you an idea of how this baby sparkles. First up is one coat of XOXO over two coats of Mint Polish- Original Mint (don't worry! I've got a review post of Original Mint on its own coming up soon!)

Next is one coat of XOXO over four(!) coats of Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure- Polar Bare. I wanted to try XOXO over a soft white jelly so I grabbed Polar Bare since I hadn't tried it yet. I had no idea it would be so sheer! I do love the way this combo looks though. The gold tones in the sparkly flakes definitely shine against the white underwear.

Here is one coat of XOXO over two coats of Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure- Thinking of Blue. I'm pretty sure both of these Sally Hansen polishes I used have been discontinued and I got them for super cheap at Rite Aid or CVS. I think this whole line was just revamped with new colors so these two shades might not be readily available in your area.

The flakes also have a hint of pink shimmer going on!

Pros- I love the packaging that Rainbow Honey uses. Nice round bottles that come in a cute little box. The formula was a breeze to work with and I had no issues with glitter placement. I had a great amount of red hexes end up on each nail.
Cons- I don't like the way the iridescent flaky bits look over dark colors but that's definitely just me. 
Overall- This glitter topper is a winner in my book. You need it!

The Sweet Talk Collection is being released on 01/25/13 at 12:01AM EST at their website and through other participating retailers. Each polish retails for $10 a piece and Rainbow Honey shared a special promo code with us to share with our readers! 

Use the code SWEETTALK$5 to receive $5 off your next Rainbow Honey order! Offer expires 02/28/13.

***This polish was sent for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.***

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Aphrodite Lacquers - Violent Delights

Hi everyone!  Happy Wednesday and I hope you are staying warm wherever you are.  In Baltimore, it's in the 20's and that is COLD for us.  Crazy.  Today I have a sweet polish to warm you up, Aphrodite Lacquers Violent Delights.  We are big fans of Aphrodite here and Rebecca has created yet another creative, cohesive collection with her Romes and Jules Collection.  Romantic, yet violent.  I love it.

Violent Delights is described as:  white jelly polish, packed with white glitters of various sizes and all the different pink and purple glitters from this collection, and holo microglitters scattered throughout.  The description is perfect.  I really love the white glitters in the white jelly base.  I thought I would need three coats to reach the opacity that I wanted but it was good to go at 2 coats.  If you wanted a little more coverage, I would do one coat of Essie Marshmallow or another white jelly and then 2 coats of Violent Delights.  There is a lot of glitter in this polish and 3 coats maybe sort of thick.  I used one coat of Seche Ridge Filling base, 2 of Violent Delights and one coat of Out The Door topcoat.  I would recommend letting the first coat dry a little before applying the second so the glitters don't shift around.  I did that and I didn't have to do any glitter placement.  

See the pretty holo microglitter that's scattered throughout?  I really love that!

Pros:  The color combo is just gorgeous.  I love how it's a Valentine's Day polish and it could totally work for it or you could wear it any time. 
Cons:  None to speak of.  I was really happy with this polish.
Overall:  Another great polish from Aphrodite!  

Aphrodite Lacquer can be purchased on Etsy for $8 for a full size bottle.  Check their Facebook page for details and restocking updates.  There are a few bottles of Violent Delights left so hurry up and grab one!

***This polish was sent to me for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.***

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

SinfulColors Beau Khaki

Beau Khaki is another of the colors I got recently from the Haute Rebel collection and I swear I got it because I love greens and it's rumored to be a dupe of Chanel's Khaki Vert and not because the name sounds like that Japanese word for a sexual fetish. I'm not that kind of girl!
SinfulColors Beau Khaki
Beau Khaki is a rich, warm green that reminds me of the color of buttered peas. I thought it might be similar to China Glaze Westside Warrior, but it's much lighter and a teeny bit yellower. If they were a military uniform, Beau Khaki would be the shirt and Westside Warrior the jacket. They would make a great combination for stamping or gradients, though, so I'll have to keep that in mind, or even a funky French or half-moon mani. So many possibilities!
I'm not making up the name!
I really love this color on me and I got several comments on it at work, so it certainly is eye-catching. Application was a breeze and I had no issues with wear — SinfulColors really excels with their cremes, if you ask me, and I haven't been disappointed with the colors I've tried from this collection.
Like buttered peas...
This green looks so good on me it's almost enough to make me join the Army, but then I couldn't wear great colors like this on my nails. I think I'm too short, anyway...

Monday, January 21, 2013

Mint Polish - Dirty Shirley

Happy Martin Luther King, Jr. Monday!  I have today off work and I'm loving it.  Today I have one of a new to Polished Cousins line, Mint Polish Dirty Shirley.  This is one of three we have coming up but when I saw this color I knew I had to review it.  It screams ERIN COLOR.  This polish gives me a heart attack.  It's a heart attack in a bottle.  I love it. 

Dirty Shirley is described as:  This bright and sugary pink has fruity hints of maraschino and a gorgeous pearlescent sheen in the sunlight. Inspired by a best friend's cocktail of choice, Dirty Shirley is a classic pink with a kick. Bottle color in one coat.  All true.  I would call the "pearlescent sheen" a blue violet pink shimmer.  Cupcakes!  Hearts!  Stars!  I love this polish.  I could have easily left it at one coat but I love two coats and it just made it even better.  Let's talk about formula.  Like butter.  It's the closet I've ever used to the perfection that is RBL's formula.  I also really love the bottle.  It's very easy to hold between my knees when I polish my nails, hunched over, on my lap.  What?  You don't polish your nails on your couch?  I used one coat of CND Sticky base, 2 coats of Dirty Shirley and one coat of HK Girl. 

Are you kidding me with this shimmer?  I die.

Best bottles ever
What do you think?  Do you love this as much as I do? 

Mint Polish is ultra-formulated toxin free, retails for $10 and is available here.  And surprise! I have a code for 30% off your order!  Enter LOVEMINT2013 at checkout.  I know I'm stocking up.  I'm off to swatch stalk!

***This polish was sent to me for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.***

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Essence - Gray-t To Be Here

Hi everyone!  I'm having a major love affair with gray polish these days.  Gray and nude is really all I want to wear, with a little red thrown in for some variety!  So today I have Essence Gray-t To Be Here.  I saw swatches of this polish on a bunch of nail blogs and knew I needed it.  My Ulta has the crappiest selection of Essence polishes ever.  There are usually like 3 on the whole display and one bottle is usually yellow or something terrible.  So Robin (I think?  It could have been Anna too!) picked this up for me and I'm forever grateful.

Gray-t To Be Here is a light gray polish with the finest pink and copper shimmer.  I tried to capture the shimmer as much as I could while still keeping the look of the polish intact.  I don't want to you think that the shimmer is so bright because it's not.  But it's definitely there and you can see it in low light as well.  I used CND Sticky base, two coats of Gray-t To Be Here and one coat of Seche Vite.  I don't get the best wear of Essence polish and that's ok.  They are $2 so it's fine.  I had a couple big chips by the end of the first day.  Oh well!  It was gorgeous while it lasted!


More of a "real life" look.  You can still see the shimmer.

Do you have any tips for better wear with Essence?  Maybe a base and top coat that works better for you?