Category Archives: Brands: Indie

Nail Pattern Boldness Glitter A-Peel Review

Press Sample – No Affiliate Links

npb glitter a-peel - header2

This post is way, way overdue. About a year ago, the very kind Allison of Nail Pattern Boldness sent me a bottle of her Glitter A-Peel peel-off basecoat for review.  Now that OPI has released a Glitter Off base coat, I am (finally) going to review the Nail Pattern Boldness version.

First, let’s talk about OPI Glitter Off (which I don’t see for sale online anywhere – but there are several blogger reviews). It’s basically watered down PVC glue (in the US, the most common brand of PVC glue is Elmer’s Glue). I haven’t used the OPI, but I’ve used slightly watered down PVC glue  several times as a base coat. It does work in that it peels off easily when it’s time to remove, but overall I find using it a frustrating experience.  My manicure peels off best if I use either one thick coat of glue or two very thin coats, and either way, the glue takes several minutes to dry — and I can’t apply my polish until it’s totally dry without making a mess. Continue reading

Weekly Loves #1

Purchased – No Affiliate Links

Weekly Loves

I decided to start a new series, Weekly Loves.  I’ll be (hopefully!) posting it every week on Sunday so I can discuss my loves / favorites from the week.  I’ll use the following four prompts to structure the post:

  1. A newly purchased product I am loving;
  2. A long-time or rediscovered favorite I am loving;
  3. My most-wanted wishlist item; and
  4. A blog post I especially enjoyed reading.

Let’s get started –

A newly purchased product I am loving

I really love thermal nail polish right now, and Polished by KPT makes my favorites ones.  The newest addition to my thermal polish family Harvest Moon, which is especially great because it’s work appropriate – nude/beige when warm & orange when cold (and holo, too!).

Continue reading

Ninja Polish Divinity, New Drugstore Collections, and Coming Soon!

Ninja Polish Divinity

Ninja Polish Divinity

Ninja Polish Divinity: purple & red with a green shift. In the photo above, I freehanded the black pattern with Stripe Rite paint from Sally Beauty. The photo is from my Instagram, which (as I think I’ve mentioned before) is entirely photographs of my nails and my kittens.

There are lots of new collections landing at the drugstore, but I haven’t spotted any of them myself yet – Nouveau Cheap has all the details! I’m most excited about L’oreal’s new Miss Candy collection, which has “Gellie” – aka jelly – finish nail polishes and LE infallible eyeshadows. Maybelline’s LE Colors Tattoos have potential too – Seashore Frosts is the most intriguing to me.

And coming up soon (or soon-ish) on Project Swatch:

– I will, of course, be purchasing and reviewing a selection of items from the new drugstore collections;

– Swatches of all my purple & berry lipsticks;

– A comparison of nine (!) different eyeshadow primers (I was surprised to find out I had so many);

And more!

*I purchased Ninja Polish Divinity.   Please see my disclosure policy for more information.

Contrary Polish – Aint No Sunshine – Swatch of the Day

Contrary Polish Ain't No Sunshine Swatch

Contrary Polish – Ain’t No Sunshine
 – click to enlarge –

I am utterly in love with this polish. This is three coats with topcoat.

For a comparison to Illamasqua Raindrops (as well as LOTS of gorgeous Contrary Polish swatches), please see this post on Spaz & Squee – the comparison is near the bottom of the page.

contrary polish aint no sunshine - 2

You can buy full-size bottle of Contrary Polish on Llarowe here. You can buy mini-bottles directly from Carrie, who makes the polishes – information on how to do that is on the sidebar of Carrie’s blog here. My bottle of Ain’t No Sunshine is a mini-bottle that I bought from Carrie – but I love it so much that I think I’ll be ordering a full size one as well.

Nail Pattern Boldness Glitter Food / Fix a Flat Review, Comparisons, Test

Nail Pattern Boldness collection

My Nail Pattern Boldness collection – Glitter Food on the left

One of my favorite indie nail polish brands is Nail Pattern Boldness, which you can buy directly on Etsy or via Llarowe.  NPB makes a variety of polishes, but her signature product is Glitter Food / Fix a Flat, which is a hand made multipurpose product that smooths out glitter polishes and can also be used to fix polishes with sinking glitter.  I will be reviewing Glitter Food today!

Nail Pattern Boldness Glitter Food

Nail Pattern Boldness Glitter Food

I initially bought Glitter Food because of some sinking glitters in my own franken polishes.  It’s very easy to use; just pour out some of the polish (or use an eyedropper to remove polish). Pour in some of the Glitter food, shake, and you’re done! Below, I have a photograph of my polish before Glitter Food, immediately after adding & shaking, and five days later, after sitting still and upright.

Nail Pattern Boldness Glitter Food - test

Before / Immediately after adding Glitter Food & shaking / After

As you can see, even though I used suspension base, the glitters were just too heavy, and sank quite badly.  After, they are much more suspended. They aren’t perfectly suspended – they are concentrated near the bottom – but they’re doing much better than before the Glitter Food. I removed only a little bit of the polish base; I’m sure that if I had removed more polish and added more Glitter Food, it would have worked better.

Verdict? A must have for sinking glitters!

I also tested Glitter Food as a topcoat for “hungry” glitters.  I started off with two coats of China Glaze Glistening Snow – one of the grittiest, hungriest glitters I own.  When I last wore it, it wasn’t smooth even with four coats of topcoat. I tested it with my go-to topcoat, NYC Grand Central Station, as well as Gelous (a basecoat which works quite well to smooth out glitters) and Glitter Food. Note that Glitter Food dries to a satin finish, so if you want a glossy finish, you need an additional topcoat.

Below, from left to right, I have:

1 – no topcoat
2 – one coat of topcoat
3 – two coats of topcoat
4 – one coat of Gelous + one coat of topcoat
5 – one coat of Glitter Food + one coat of topcoat
6 – two coats of Glitter Food + one coat of topcoat

Nail Patter Boldness Glitter Food - test

click to enlarge

It’s hard to see the subtleties, but I think it’s apparent that one coat of topcoat did almost nothing to smooth out the finish.   Two coats of topcoat was still gritty, though it was smooth enough to have some reflective properties.  Using either Gelous or Glitter Food made a significant improvement. Glitter Food worked better than Gelous, but not significantly better – just a little better.  Two coats of Glitter Food worked significantly better than one coat of Glitter Food (but do note that this is an exceptionally gritty polish – one that requires 4+ coats of normal topcoat to smooth out!)

The verdict? Glitter Food is significantly better at smoothing out glitter than regularly topcoat, but only slightly better than Gelous.   Gelous is a little cheaper if you have a Sally Beauty nearby, but Glitter Food may be easier to obtain if you are not in the US, since Llarowe ships internationally.

Is NPB’s Glitter Food something that you’re interested in buying?

Nail Polish Comparisons & Swatches: Linear & Scattered Holos

Holo Nail polish swatch sticks

Holo Nail polish swatch sticks

It’s time for part six of my nail polish series! Today I have my holos, both linear and scattered. I’ve also snuck in my indies at the end, just beacuse I don’t have very many of them.  I didn’t include my Starlight and Sparkles color shifting polishes and topcoats, because I have all them swatched here.  If you’d like to see the previous ones, I’m collecting all the links from the nail polish swatch series on my Project Swatch Roundup page (scroll to the bottom).

As before, I’ve included pictures that have the handle of the swatch stick, so you can more easily see the name of the polish. I also have a close-up of the polished tips only. In every set, the close-up of the tips is more color accurate. The number at the end of the stick is the number of coats, and no number means two coats. A couple of these have topcoat, and the swatch stick then says “+ TC.”

Again, I’ve left these pictures larger than usual – click to enlarge.

First, my linear holos. Magia Negra and FYI are my favorites here.

swatches - Jade Magia Negra, Layla Flash Black, Glitter Gal 707H, Starlight & Sparkles Starlight, China Glaze FYI

Jade Magia Negra, Layla Flash Black, Glitter Gal 707H, Starlight & Sparkles Starlight, China Glaze FYI

Some very strong scattered holos; I think my favorite here is OPI DS Classic. I really love neutral holos – they are classic with a twist!

swatches - OPI DS Classic, Milani 3D, Milani Hi-Res, Milani HD, China Glaze Glistening Snow, China Glaze Angel Wings

OPI DS Classic, Milani 3D, Milani Hi-Res, Milani HD,
China Glaze Glistening Snow, China Glaze Angel Wings

I love all of my A-Englands, but Tristam might be my favorite. I also like using them together – using one color as an accent nail with a manicure as another, doing a gradient, or things like that. I’ve been wanting to water marble with them, but haven’t tried it yet. These are much prettier in person than in my swatches here – they’re full of rainbows in the sun!

A-England: Bridal Veil, Saint George, Tristam, Lady of the Lake, Ascalon swatches

A-England: Bridal Veil, Saint George, Tristam, Lady of the Lake, Ascalon

And finally, three miscellaneous holos that didn’t fit in my other groups – weaker scattered holos. Catrice Dirty Berry is a new favorite, and Butter London All Hail the Queen is an old favorite. It’s also my fiancee’s favorite polish for me to wear, so I might wear it at my wedding next year.  It is a bit lighter and more holo in the sun than in my swatch.

Catrice Dirty Berry, Essence Can't Cheat on Me,  Butter London All Hail the Queen swatches

Catrice Dirty Berry, Essence Can’t Cheat on Me,
Butter London All Hail the Queen

And, some indies! As you can see, Nail Pattern Boldness makes my favorite indie polishes (I’ll have a review on her Glitter Food topcoat coming up in the next few days).  I also adore Hare Twilight Savings.

swatches - Nail Pattern Boldness "Silver" Flake Topcoat, Nail Pattern Boldness Oodiful, Nail Pattern Boldness Ignition (remix), Nail Pattern Boldness Seppuku (with a frisbee), Candeo Colors Jellybean, Hare Twilight Savings

Nail Pattern Boldness “Silver” Flake Topcoat, Nail Pattern Boldness Oodiful, Nail Pattern Boldness Ignition (remix), Nail Pattern Boldness Seppuku (with a frisbee), Candeo Colors Jellybean, Hare Twilight Savings

Anything in this post catch your eye?