L'Oreal Brit Invasion -limited edition - $6 at most drugstores -
Last week I showed you pics of another polish from the L'Oreal "London Fall" collection, Tea and Crumpets. This polish, Brit Invasion, is the other that I picked up at that time. I picked up T&C because I'm always searching for The Perfect Nude Polish, and I keep thinking I've found nirvana, but something better always comes along. Or I hope it will... I picked up Brit Invasion simply because it looked sort of unique. Well, that and the name, but I think I've covered that before.
Brit Invasion is a smoky plum, a la Chanel Paradoxal, China Glaze Jungle Queen and Essie Smokin' Hot, but it's got a little something extra. Namely a generous glaze of bronzey shimmer. The coverage is excellent, you'll only need two moderate coats and wear is pretty good. I think it's the epitome of Fall polishes, and since metallics are big this summer, it'll make a nice polish to wear during the transitional period that comes in August between Summer brights and Fall vamps.
Essie Armed & Ready - $8 at drugstores
I randomly found A&R at Target the other day, and I was super happy. I'd been looking forward to finding it. I'd also anticipated an army green, but what I got was a deep warm grey with bronze shimmer. Gorgeous nonetheless, but definitely a bit different than I was expecting. I asked my hubby what color he thought it was... He came up with "grey-greenish" while we were sitting in the car in traffic, so in indirect sunlight. Yeah in some lights it has a whisper, a mere suggestion, of green, but mostly it's grey. The bronze shimmer is hidden in most lights, but it does pop out nicely in bright light, so it's a nice bonus. In low light, the base is really nice and creamy and really looked nice next to my beigey skin. It applies VERY nicely, two coats is more than enough. You know what it really reminds me of as far as finish? Chanel Paradoxal! It's creamy, dark, dusky and has the hidden shimmer. It's a grey Paradoxal!
I recently came across a photo of Rihanna's tiger print nails, and knew immediately I wanted to try to re-create it. I'm a big fan of Rihanna's nail choices; her nails are always rad. I think hers may be Minx or something because look at her left (your right) hand... The middle and ring fingers look identical. Either way, this is a super simple nail look to re-create. I used China Glaze Snow for the base, then I used China Glaze Classic Camel and Goin' My Way from last year's Vintage Vixens collection to sponge random spot on my nails. I did barely any on some, and lots on others to help with that random look Rihanna's nails have going on. Then I used a black nail art striper polish by Art Deco to make the stripes. I finished off with a layer of Seche Vite to seal it in.
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Sephora by OPI Havana Nights Mini Collection - $18 at sephora.com
There are some great and not-so-great things about this set I want to share with you. I'm going to start with the bad, just to get it out of the way, then we'll get on to the good stuff. Regular ol' OPI full-size bottles will run you $8.50 retail, and the Sephora by OPI polishes will only set you back an extra fifty cents at $9. No biggie there, right? Well, then you look at the difference in price between this 4-piece mini set versus a 4-piece mini set of the regular OPI. The SOPI set of minis will set you back $18, whereas you can cop a OPI mini collection, with bottles the same size, for a low price ranging online from about $10-12. Why the huge yawning chasm between mini collection price points? I dunno, but it's ridiculous in this girl's humble opinion. At the least, I'd expect to see mini versions of all six polishes from the Havana Nights collection in this box for the extra six or eight bucks, am I right? This frustrates me, but let's move on, shall we?
These four polishes are all very nice in their own right, if not entirely unique. The Sephora by OPI formula is quite nice and these minis are no exception. At just the right balance between thick and thin, and they apply beautifully into the bargain. If you'd like to see the swatches and my thoughts, please check out the jump.
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Index to pinkie: China Glaze Unplugged, Petites Bronze Baby, OPI Espresso Your Style, China Glaze Unplugged
China Glaze Unplugged: I love this warm bronze because it screams "Summer!" but also would work beautifully for Fall. The bright copper shimmer really brightens it up in the light. It applies great and it's pretty unique, at least to my collection. Three coats are seen here.
Petites Bronze Baby: I thought this was amazing when I saw it at Wal-mart. I like the neutral bronze shade, but I'm a little bummed that it takes four coats to become anywhere near opaque. It's got almost a green cast to it when put up against Unplugged.
OPI Espresso Your Style: Nope, it's not bronze, but I thought it was like a deeper version of Unplugged. The base is the color of black coffee and the bronze shimmer really enhances it. Two medium or three thin coats will do ya.
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China Glaze Unplugged - available at Sally Beauty stores and online at transdesign.com
Unplugged was originally released with the Spring Ecollection a couple years ago, and initially I passed on it in favor of more traditionally Springy shades like Shower Together. However, this Spring, I've found myself looking for beautiful and bold bronzes in addition to my usual brights and neons, and so I found myself wondering about Unplugged... I have previously owned China Glaze Soft Sienna Silks, and while I like the idea of Spring bronzes and always have, I found it too midtoned for my skin. I like bright, light or dark; nothing that blends too much with my skintone. Luckily, Unplugged strikes a nice balance in that it's not vampy or overwhelming for warmer months, and yet it's still bold. The base is a neutral brown with rusty and copper shimmer making the overall appearance a deep bronze. I love the name and the shade, and the application is pretty decent as well. If you'd like to see more photos of Unplugged, jump on it... More pics of Unplugged