Friday, August 30, 2013

Adore: My Happily Ever After

**This product was provided for an unbiased review. All opinions are my own.**

My Happily Ever After is from Adore's Wedding Collection and this rich plum shade is one I've seen in several bridesmaid outfits recently, in addition to many of the new fall lines of polish. Is plum the next trendy color? I think it might be!
My Happily Ever After, two coats plus topcoat
On their website they describe My Happily Ever After as a matte dark purple but my bottle didn't dry to a matte finish, although I did eventually put on a quick-dry topcoat anyway. The formula was easy to apply, requiring minimal cleanup, and the brush is flat, but not as wide as the OPI or Sally Hansen CSM brushes so it was a breeze to maneuver around the nail. To my eye the color leans more toward the red zone so I'd call it more of a plum than a purple, but no matter what you call it, it's gorgeous!

On their site they show several gift ideas for packaging their polishes as shower favors or bridesmaids' gifts (I know I'd love to get one of these!) Polish can be purchased from their website for USD$8 a bottle, with free shipping on orders over $40. Follow Adore on Facebook for updates and sales!

**This product was provided for an unbiased review. All opinions are my own.**

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Pretty & Polished Fall Collection

Good morning! Anna here. I'm pretty excited today because I'm starting a new semester for my Master's program. The first day of school is always nerve wrecking, even if we're all grown ups. Anyway, on to the polish!

 Today I have some pretties from the new Pretty & Polished Fall Collection plus an unreleased thermal polish to show you. I have been dying to try a thermal polish since I saw Erin's post about P&P Dreams of Mermaids.

First up is Leaf Me Breathless. This is a sheer bright yellow jelly polish loaded with leaf-colored hexes and diamonds. I wanted to show you how much glitter is in this baby so I used two coats of Sation- AbbacaDazzle (full review here) first and dabbed a coat of Leaf Me Breathless on top. This polish definitely reminds me of fall leaves and if you love yellow, you need this polish.

Next up is H-equinox My Socks Off, a taupe crelly base with blue and gold hexes throughout. I used three coats for the swatch below. I thought this shade of taupe would clash with my skin tone but this polish ended up being a surprise favorite!

The last polish I have to show you from the Fall Collection is Forever My Pumpking, a bright orange jelly with tiny gold flakes. This polish dries to a satin matte finish. I had some trouble with the formula. It went on a little streaky and I needed three coats to level it out. I wasn't able to see the flakes on the nail so I tried adding a topcoat to see if I could get them to shine. They were definitely more visible under a topcoat but I still couldn't get my camera to show them. My camera has a deep fear of bright orange polishes!

Now, I'm sorry to say that I don't know much about this polish. I know that it's called Flashdance. I know that it's a thermal polish that goes from sparkly dusty baby blue to sparkly white. And I know that I really love it. I just don't know when it will be released for you all to enjoy!

I was running a little warm this day and I had a hard time capturing the blue! I tried to use hot and cool water to show the effect, which is why you can see drops on my fingers. But my sink is at the other end of my house from my light box. You should have seen me running back and forth trying to get pictures before the color changed back!

So what do you think? This is definitely a collection that screams Fall to me and I LOVE this thermal polish. The Fall Collection will be available to purchase on September 5th :)

Instagram: Pretty & Polished

Sunday, August 25, 2013

NOTD: SinfulColors Ablaze

SinfulColors has several new collections out now, fortunately coinciding with the 2/$3 promotion at Walgreens through September, and I spotted this lovely in the Bright Essentials collection. Ablaze is a bright, juicy watermelon shade that is perfect for the end of the summer!
SinfulColors Ablaze, three coats plus topcoat
This formula was not quite a crelly — very shiny and needing three coats to cover, but not having the same sort of transparent shininess that a crelly has. It's sort of a cross between their regular SinfulColors line and the new SinfulShine line. In any case, it's a gorgeous shade and you all should get it while the Walgreens sale is still on!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Zoya 2013 Fall PixieDust Collection

**Products provided for an unbiased review. All opinions are my own.**

Textured polishes are still wildly popular and Zoya is building on their base of colors with their new release of the 2013 Fall PixieDust Collection, which has some of their very best colors if you ask me. The colors are intense and most of them were one-coaters, although you could certainly use two or more if you wanted more texture. (I love how their web site tells you to allow product to dry completely in between layers OR ELSE!) You could also choose to use a top coat to smooth it out but I rather like the suede-like texture of the PixieDusts.
Zoya 2013 Fall PixieDust Collection
I'll start off with my favorite of the collection, Arabella, a rich raspberry color. Two coats and it was easy to manipulate so no cleanup was required. The color is primarily berry with touches of silver to spice it up. I love this one so much!
Arabella, two coats
Next is Sunshine, one of the best navy colors I've ever come across. This one was the most matte of the collection although there is still plenty of silver sparkle, as you can see in the bottle. Simply stunning!
Sunshine, one coat
Tomoko really needs a video to show off its true beauty! It's like watching bubbles rise to the top in a flute of champagne and the result is breathtaking. Truly a polish worthy of a special event! I used three coats here only because I smudged one nail and had to apply another coat and I wanted them all to match but two were just fine. A warning, though, that the glitter on this is nearly impossible to clean up so it's better to stay away from the edges of your nails than it is to let the polish touch the skin and try to clean up after. Even after removing it I had to scrub at my fingers with a nail brush to get rid of the glitter and I still kept finding it all over my hands.
Tomoko, three coats
You all know how I love greens and Chita doesn't disappoint. It's a rich forest-y hunter green with highlights that glint gold, like lightning bugs on a summer evening. Another favorite for me!
Chita, one coat
Dhara is a deeper orange than Beatrix, from the Summer Collection but not as red as Destiny. It has glints of gold that make it look aflame (doesn't the bottle almost look like burning coals?) Even though summer is nearly over this would make an awesome summer pedicure.
Dhara, two coats
Purple is another of my favorite colors and Carter is an amazingly rich shade due to the bits of red in with the various shades of violet. Unfortunately, the formula on this one was difficult to handle and globbed on, but since this bottle shipped with a loose cap and some had leaked out I'm blaming the shipping for that and not the polish, especially since it was the only problematic one of the collection.
Carter, two coats
If you've been put off of trying textured polishes, give the PixieDusts a try — their texture is more suede-like than some of the others out there and less likely to catch on fabrics as long as you buff the tips to smooth out any rough edges.

Zoyas can be purchased at any Ulta store as well as the Zoya website and retail for USD$9 per bottle. Follow them on Twitter to keep up-to-date with their products and like them on Facebook for the latest on nail care and style!

**Products provided for an unbiased review. All opinions are my own.**

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Sally Hansen Cuticle Eraser + Balm

**Product provided for review. All opinions are my own.**

Caution! Naked nails ahead!

As you can imagine, swatching a lot of polish can be rough on your cuticles so it's good to have a lot of options for repair. Sally Hansen's Salon Manicure Cuticle Eraser + Balm is the one I keep on my nightstand because it provides deep-down moisturizing relief. It is also a bit greasy and takes a while to soak in so overnight works best for me.
You really don't need a lot — this amount will do five nails.
I swirl my finger along the spiral to get a good mix of the colors and dab it along the base of each nail (I don't know which color is the eraser and which is the balm or if there even is a difference, but I do it just to be sure.) I don't have much of a cuticle problem as far as removal goes because I do daily maintenance but I need to moisturize constantly!
I put extra on each nail for photo purposes.
Then I massage it into each nail and the surrounding cuticle area. I really work it into the cuticles!
I leave this amount along the cuticle edges overnight.
Next I apply hand lotion and go to sleep. The little bit I leave on the cuticles soaks in overnight and I wake up to beautifully moisturized cuticles. Now if it would only work on whitening my yellowed nails along with it!
How they look by morning.
Sally Hansen Salon Manicure Cuticle Eraser + Balm is available at drug and department stores nationwide and retails for about USD$8.00.

**Product provided for review. All opinions are my own.** 

Friday, August 16, 2013

KB Shimmer - No Whine Left & Witch Way?

***Products provided for review.  All opinions are  my own.***

Two days of KB Shimmer posts!  Yay for you!  I have a couple new to me KB Shimmers to show you today, No Whine Left and Witch Way?  I've been coveting both of these for a while and I'm really excited to add them to my collection.

No Whine Left:  A deep plum, almost burgundy wine color, this polish is  loaded with blue, aqua, fuchsia, and purple hex glitters in several sizes. The  glitters in this polish seem to pop out in different lights, adding a fun depth  to it.  This polish is more of a “crelly”, a cream with jelly  properties.  I really love the mix of colors in this polish.  So deep and mysterious and perfect for fall.  I used 3 coats for full opacity and Out The Door top coat.  

Witch Way?:  After midnight, a full moon is lighting the night sky making it almost purple in color. Stars in different sizes sparkle and shine, like diamonds. This polish, with its deep grape color is full of holographic glitters made to mimic those diamond like stars.  Oh this polish.  OH!!  I just love it.  I wore it to the Justin Timberlake and Jay-Z concert and they were the perfect dark, bling nails for that show.  I got a ton of compliments on it.  I used 2 coats and Nubar Diamont top coat to seal it off.

Both of these sweet babies are available on KB Shimmer's website for $8.75 and they are perfect for fall!  Make sure you also take a look at my post from yesterday with swatches of the new fall collection releasing September 1, 2013! 

***Products provided for review.  All opinions are  my own.***

Thursday, August 15, 2013

KB Shimmer Fall 2013 Collection

***Product provided for review.  All opinions are my own.***

Happy Thursday!  I have a super exciting post for you today, KB Shimmer Fall 2013 Collection.  I've had these polishes for about a week and I've been dying to share them!  Let's get right to the swatches.

Excuse Me, I Blurpled:  A shade not quite blue, not quite purple shade with glitters in many shades of blue, purple, with a hint of copper.  Best in 2 coats.  I'm really not great with Photoshop to color correct but this is more of a true 'blurple' in person.  These pictures show it leaning more blue.  It's really in the middle.  I love this one. I used 2 coats and Out The Door for this and all swatches.

You Autumn Know:  Crunchy leaves in shades of red, burgundy, yellow and brown litter the sidewalks, white flakes of snow slowly cover the autumn shades.  You Autumn Know was inspired by the that first snow of the year.  A white crelly polish is loaded with fuchsia, gold and orange glitters.  Micro bars accent the fall pallet of this polish.  Best in three coats, or 2 coats over white.  Isn't that description divine?  Totally perfect for this polish.  Since I've been swatching on nubs, I really only needed 2 coats of this one.

Every Nook and Cranberry:  A cranberry satin matte polish with a subtle pink and gold shimmer.  This polish with its blue undertones is one that will work on many skin tones.  Best in two coats.  This is hands down my favorite of the collection and I've been wearing it for 3 days with zero chipping or tip wear.  In love!

Love that shimmer!

Vicious Circles:  A blood red jelly loaded with silver holographic circles in two sizes, silver holographic hex glitters and holographic silver micro slices.  This jelly polish works best in three thin coats, but those with shorter nails might get away with two.  This was a surprise favorite.  I liked it in the bottle but it didn't wow me.  But when I put it on, I didn't want to take it off!  So gorgeous and sparkly.  Vicious Circles will get a lot of wear in the fall and winter. 

There are 3 other polishes in this collection and you can check them all out over at The Nail Network (P.S. Chelsea's blog makes me SICK because her nails are so perfect).  I am in love with Turbulence and Teal Another Tail.

The Fall Collection will be available on KB Shimmer website on September 1, 2013 for $8.75.  What are your favorites from this collection??

***Product provided for review.  All opinions are my own.***

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

butter LONDON Bespoke Color Cosmetics

***Products provided for review.  All opinions are my own.***

Hey all. Today I have my first makeup post ever on Polished Cousins!  Be kind to me...I'm new at this.  I was so excited when I heard that butter LONDON launched a makeup line because everyone knows about our bL love affair here at Polished Cousins!  Here is a little about the new Bespoke Color Cosmetics Collection from butter LONDON.  

The Bespoke Colour Cosmetics collection introduces WINK Mascara (6 Shades, $20 each), WINK Cream Eye Shadow (6 Shades, $18 each), WINK Eye Pencil (6 Shades, $18 each), LIPPY Tinted Balm (6 Shades, $20 each), and CHEEKY Cream Blush (4 Shades, $20 each). Along with the new cosmetics, five new Nail Lacquer shades ($15 each) will also be added to butter LONDON’s famous collection of nail colour.

The collection launched August 1st on and

I received a sample of the WINK Cream Eye Shadow in Sun Kiss, a muted gold shimmer.  I'm really in love with this gorgeous gold shimmer and the packaging is stunning.  I wasn't in love with the doe foot applicator so after I applied it on my lids, I smoothed it out with a flat eye shadow brush.  It gives just a slight wash of gold shimmer, very pretty.  I will probably use it as a highlighter or blend it with another gold shadow since it is so light.

I also received a sample of the WINK Eye Pencil in Brown Sugar, a chocolate brown creme.  While this may look like an ordinary brown eyeliner, this baby has staying power.  I swatched this on my (hairy? wtf) inner arm around 7 pm and it was still there at noon the next day.  Let's not discuss how often I shower.  Thanks.  But seriously!  Not even smudged.  I had to use makeup remover to get it off.  Win!

I really don't think I could have asked for better samples to do my first makeup review on!  I loved them!  Do you have any of the new butter LONDON Bespoke Color Collection?  If so, let me know your thoughts!

***Products provided for review.  All opinions are my own.***

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

OPI Tickle My France-y

I love pale neutrals because they give my stubby little fingers the illusion of length, especially after I've filed my nails down to nubbins, and OPI Tickle My France-y is one of my favorites. I like that it's a warm pink, so it fits in well with summer tanned skin (not that I actually tan to a noticeable degree.) Originally from the Fall 2008 La Collection De France it has become part of their core line so it shouldn't be as hard to find as, say, Parlez-Vous OPI?
OPI Tickle My France-y, two coats plus topcoat
This warm pink is a wonderful nude nail so it would be a great choice for a wedding, where you don't want to upstage the rings, or for a vacation, when you don't want to have to worry about obvious chips. Definitely worth adding to your collection!
Label shot for the numbers

Monday, August 12, 2013

Mint Pass The Scone and Comparisons

You would think that by now I have every pale neutral gray-beige-taupe polish on the market, wouldn't you? But, no, I keep finding new ones and they are all just different enough! Today I've got Mint Polish Pass The Scone for you, as well as comparisons to some Essie colors in the same range.
Mint Pass The Scone, two coats plus topcoat
Pass The Scone has the same awesome formula as the other Mint polishes we've reviewed, although this one seemed thin on the first coat and I was afraid I'd need to do three, but the second coat evened everything out to perfection. What more can I say? So let's get on to the comparisons...
Tow coats plus topcoat on all nails
As you can see, Pass The Scone is closest to Essie Jazz but it's slightly more yellow, whereas Master Plan is clearly more gray and Miss Fancy Pants almost seems taupe by comparison. I would say that if you already have Jazz you don't need Pass The Scone unless your skin tone is flattered by a more yellow tone. Formula-wise they were all great.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Essie Hot Coco

Yes, I know it's August and still summer, but the mornings here in New England have that crisp fall feeling to them now before the day heats up to summer temperatures and I've been having hot chocolate  instead of my coffee now and then, so Essie Hot Coco is totally appropriate for this time of year!
Essie Hot Coco, two coats plus topcoat
The color is a pale milk chocolate color with a slight reddish tinge, more like instant coco than the kind I make from scratch (probably because I use way more coco when I make it myself!) This makes it different enough from my other taupes like SinfulColors Nirvana or Revlon VIP to need it! The formula was a bit thin but two coats covered smoothly, although it did show tip wear within the first day even though I wrapped my nails, so that was kind of disappointing, but it's very elegant and definitely business appropriate so it still gets a thumbs up from me.
Label shot for the numbers

Friday, August 9, 2013

Dandy Nails - Chilled Down

Happy Friday! The Justin Timberlake/Jay-Z concert was so, so fun but I am exhausted today! Today I have an indie polish for you that I'd been coveting for months. I saw it in a blog sale and snapped it up.

Chilled Down is described as: Blue and Gold flakes suspended in an off-white, milky base, for a perfect winter feel. I used two coats for opacity, one coat of Gelous and one coat of Out The Door. Sometimes milk bases don't look great on my skin but I think the gold in this one helped. I love it!!

Couldn't you just swoon??  I LOVE it! What do you think?  What's on your nails this weekend??