A England Nail Varnish in Rose Bower, swatch

A England — Rose Bower (Nail Varnish) Swatch & Review

Collection: A England 2013, Burne-Jones Dream

Indie brand A England‘s 2013 collection, Burne-Jones Dream, references the work of 19th century British artist Edward Burne-Jones. I’ve previously reviewed Sleeping Palace from this collection, where I talk more about the collection’s inspiration!

The Last Sleep of Arthur in Avalon (1898), Edward Burne-Jones
The Legend of Briar Rose: The Garden Court (1885–1890), Edward Burne-Jones.
Buscot Park, England.
Image: wikipedia.org

I’ve been trying to swatch some more romantically-inclined colors for Valentine’s Day, and Rose Bower struck me as a particularly lovely option. It’s a gorgeous azalea red—intense and pinked—with fine holographic shimmer.

A England Nail Varnish in Rose Bower
A England Nail Varnish in Rose Bower

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Pretty Woman Nail Polish in I'm Not a Ballerina, swatch

Pretty Woman — I’m Not a Ballerina (Nail Polish) Swatch & Review

Brand: Pretty Woman

My January Ipsy Glam Bag arrived with a nail polish, hooray! Unfortunately, it’s in the kind of color I almost never buy: a pastel pink cream. But, it is from a brand that’s new to me, Pretty Woman, so that’s something!

I’m Not a Ballerina is a pale, yogurt-y pastel raspberry pink cream. It leans a little blue so I’m not sure it’s the best color choice for my warm skintone.

Pretty Woman Nail Polish in I'm Not a Ballerina
Pretty Woman Nail Polish in I’m Not a Ballerina

In my Ipsy post, I mentioned that I thought the shade name was all wrong, but Stashy corrected me well! After all, just because you’re wearing ballet pink doesn’t mean you actually are a ballerina! Also, I missed the surely-deliberate play on OPI’s most famous polish, I’m Not Really a Waitress. Duh, how’d that elude me?

(More importantly, how have I not yet swatched that iconic shade?!)

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Essie Nail Lacquer in Oh Behave!, swatch

Essie — Oh Behave! (Nail Lacquer) Swatch & Review

Collection: Essie 2016 Winter

Last December, I picked up three of Essie’s Winter 2016 polishes from Shoppers Drug Mart when they were supposed to be on sale for CA$7.99. I suspect that because they were from the new collection, they rang up at regular price. I asked if they could check the price in the flyer, and they kindly honored it for me, which was cool. The shades I got were Oh Behave!, Party on a Platform, and Satin Sister.

Today, I’m reviewing Oh Behave! (1006)†. Essie describes it as a “minx peach frost”. It’s a very Essie shade to me: a semi-sheer pinked copper with warm golden shimmer. There’s a hint of milkiness to the color, but I wouldn’t go as far as calling it a pastel. I say it’s semi-sheer because you can easily wear it with one or two coats to get a sheer look, but it gets just about opaque with three coats as I have in my swatch.

[† The code is 1890 on my bottle sold at Shoppers Drug Mart. The retail bottles have shade name-and-code stickers on top of the bottle cap and a clear sticker on the front that says “Essie Nail Lacquer”. Essie bottles made for salons have an embossed “e” on top of the bottle cap, no clear logo sticker on the side of the bottle, and a shade name-and-code sticker on the bottom of the bottle. The salon sticker also folds out with an ingredient list, but I’ve never peeled it off as I like to keep the labels intact. The retail packaging also displays either no shade code or a different shade code from the salon packaging. I wish they wouldn’t do this! Currently, I just keep the salon codes in the database, but I should probably try to update it with the retail codes, too.]

Essie Nail Lacquer in Oh Behave!
Essie Nail Lacquer in Oh Behave! (retail bottle)
Essie Nail Lacquer in Oh Behave!
Essie Nail Lacquer in Oh Behave! (retail bottle)

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China Glaze Nail Lacquer in Eat, Drink, Be Merry, swatch

China Glaze — Eat, Pink, Be Merry (Nail Lacquer) Swatch & Review

Collection: China Glaze 2016 Winter, Seas & Greetings

I recently picked up a 6-pack of minis from China Glaze’s Holiday 2016 collection, Seas & Greetings.

China Glaze Nail Lacquer Mini Set in Shell-ebration Time! (Seas & Greetings holiday 2016 collection)
China Glaze Nail Lacquer Mini Set in Shell-ebration Time!
(Seas & Greetings holiday 2016 collection)

Eat, Drink, Be Merry (83782, though the mini has a different code) isa semi-opaque, cool cupcake pink with a little sprinkling of sugary shimmer. Sometimes the shimmer looks a little golden, but it doesn’t always come through. I think if the gold shimmer was strong, this would be a much more interesting shade.

China Glaze Nail Lacquer in Eat, Pink, Be Merry
China Glaze Nail Lacquer in Eat, Pink, Be Merry

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China Glaze Nail Lacquer in The More the Berrier, swatch

China Glaze — The More the Berrier (Nail Lacquer) Swatch & Review

Collection: China Glaze 2016 Winter, Seas & Greetings

I recently picked up a 6-pack of minis from China Glaze’s Holiday 2016 collection, Seas & Greetings.

China Glaze Nail Lacquer Mini Set in Shell-ebration Time! (Seas & Greetings holiday 2016 collection)
China Glaze Nail Lacquer Mini Set in Shell-ebration Time!
(Seas & Greetings holiday 2016 collection)

The More the Berrier (83780, though the mini has a different code) is a metallic hot berry pink with purple-leaning magenta iridescence in certain light.

It’s way more stunning on the nail than I would have thought! Even when the iridescence doesn’t really show up, the finish is still beautiful.

China Glaze Nail Lacquer in The More the Berrier
China Glaze Nail Lacquer in The More the Berrier

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MAC Studio Nail Lacquer in Like My Gown?, swatch

MAC — Like My Gown? (Studio Nail Lacquer) Swatch & Review

Collection: MAC Spring 2016, Fashion Pack

I’m kind of on a roll, now, so here’s another clearanced MAC polish that I picked up for CA$6.

Like My Gown?, from this spring’s Fashion Pack collection, is a vibrant magenta cream. It reminds me of Essie Footloose, which I ought to swatch one of these Throwback Thursdays.

The color is midtoned, and I think it’s one of those seasonless shades, though it’d probably look especially hot as a summer pedi! However, it’d also be a perfect pop of purple-y pink against the usual whites, greys and blacks of winter gear.

MAC Studio Nail Lacquer in Like My Gown?
MAC Studio Nail Lacquer in Like My Gown?

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Sally Hansen Color Therapy in Powder Room, swatch

Sally Hansen — Powder Room (Color Therapy) Swatch & Review

Collection: Sally Hansen 2016 Summer, Color Therapy [Launch]

I know this isn’t very Halloween-y at all, but I decided that my nail polish backlog is too great, especially since I also just picked up a number of Sally Hansen, L’Oréal, and Trust Fund Beauty polishes.

I haven’t reviewed many Sally Hansen polishes in a very long time (my last one was a Throwback Thursday review of Mandarin Mantra), but I recently became more interested in the brand after their recent summer launch of Color Therapy, a nail color infused with argan oil. The bottles look like the existing Complete Salon Manicure line, except with rose gold caps. Yup. I’m sold. (Ridiculous of me, I am aware!)

Shoppers Drug Mart ran a sale a couple of weeks ago, so I picked up Powder Room (200), Slicks and Stones (390), and Therapewter (130). I must mention that one reason I tend not to buy Sally Hansen polishes is that their top-shelf lines like Complete Salon Manicure and MiracleGel are actually priced higher than, say Essie. And I will almost always pick an Essie (one of my favorite brands of polish) over a Sally Hansen. The Color Therapy polishes tend to retail for about CA$12, and I got them on sale for $9.99. By comparison, I can often get Essies on sale for around $7–8.

So, my hope for these new Color Therapy polishes is that they make a case for being chosen over a less expensive Essie. Their marketing gimmick of containing argan oil doesn’t move me—polish needs to harden up, and I doubt there can be any benefit to the presence of said oil, let alone provide “instant moisture”.

Introducing new Color Therapy™, gorgeous color that cares while you wear! The patented argan oil formula fuses intensive nourishment and instant moisture for healthy looking nails.

Powder Room (200) is a soft beige-pink opaque frost that has a touch of taupe. The finish gives it a satin ribbon look.

Sally Hansen Color Therapy in Powder Room

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