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Essie Breast Cancer Awareness Collection 2014 from HB Beauty Bar

22 October 2014

As most of you know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, promoting awareness for the 1 in every 8 women who suffer from breast cancer. People raise awareness by wearing pink, donating to the cause, and performing self checks (you can learn how to check yourself here.) This is a cause that's very near and dear to me, so I am happy to be showing you swatches today of the Essie Breast Cancer Awareness Collection, which consists of three pink polishes. In addition to releasing the collection to raise awareness, Essie is making a $10,000 donation
to City of Hope.


These three polishes are in various shades of pink, and they all have incredible formulas! Let's take a look at them individually:


I Pink I Can is a soft, creamy pastel pink with a gorgeous shine. Normally, light colors like this can be difficult to work with, but I found that this one was really easy to use! The formula was slightly jelly-like, so it dried with a nice shine and leveled itself out. Shown above is two quick coats with top coat.


Pink Happy is a gorgeous hot pink cream. Again, this one had a perfect formula, as you can expect from Essie! The polish dried to a lovely shine and it was fully opaque in just two coats. Shown above is two coats with top coat.


And finally, we have the glitter topper of the collection, Pinking About You. This topper features soft pastel pink matte hexes in various sizes. I loved the glitter payoff in this polish! This is similar to the metallic glitter toppers that Essie has, but I love the softness of the matte glitter. Shown above is only one coat painted over Pink Happy.

Overall, I really enjoyed this collection, and I am happy to add more pink polishes to my stash! These would be perfect for some breast cancer awareness nail art.

This collection is available from HB Beauty Bar for $8.50 USD per bottle, but you can get an additional 15% off with the code POLISHCHALLENGE at checkout.



For those of you who do not know about breast cancer, I urge you to do some research and learn how you can help. There are a ton of great websites where you can learn more!

Are you picking up any of these polishes? Which is your favorite?

These polishes were provided for my honest review.
I am not affiliated with any of the above breast cancer research foundations.

Zoya Matte Velvet Collection Swatches

21 October 2014

Hi guys! Today I have swatches of the Zoya Matte Velvet Collection - these best-selling polishes have been around for a few years, and they get re-released every so often. I've always thought these colors were gorgeous, and I finally got my hands on them! Let me tell you, they did not disappoint.


This collection consists of six matte polishes with a subtle shimmer that are perfect for winter! They had flawless formulas, and I loved the velvety matte finish on all of these, but the shimmer in them was gorgeous, so I had to try them with top coat too. Let's look at them individually:


Veruschka is a deep forest green shimmer with a matte finish. This was the first matte velvet I tried, and I instantly fell in love! This color is so rich and beautiful, and the formula was perfection. Shown above is two coats, no top coat.


Of course I had to see what this color looked like with top coat! It looks so beautiful both ways.


Posh is a stunning berry red shimmer with a matte finish. Another beautiful color! I think this one is perfect for the upcoming months, especially Christmas time! Again, the formula was incredible (I'm sure I will be repeating myself a lot in this post, but these polishes are just impressive!). Shown above is two coats without top coat.


Here is Posh with top coat. The glitters in this polish really come to life with a shiny finish!


Harlow is a vibrant orchid matte with a ton of silver sparkle. I thought it was interesting to see that this color had so much more shimmer than the others, but I think the effect is really nice! Just like the others, the formula was perfection. Shown above is two coats without top coat.


And here it is with top coat! I didn't think this polish actually looked much different with top coat, unlike some of the others, but the sparkle definitely becomes deeper and more vibrant!


Savita is a breathtaking cool toned rich purple matte with red and gold shimmer. This color is just amazing! I love the addition of the different colored shimmer in this polish, it really makes it so mysterious and rich. Shown above is two coats without top coat.


And here it is with top coat! Wow! Doesn't this color look like it belongs to royalty? It's perfect!


Next, we have Dovima, a beautiful smoky black with a matte finish. With the silver shimmer in this, it reminds me of a dark night sky! I love this one, and I can see myself wearing it for a classy but elegant look. Shown above is two coats without top coat.


Here it is with top coat, which makes it look even more like the night sky! Can anyone say "galaxy nails"?!


And finally, we have Loredana, a gorgeous gunmetal gray with a matte finish. This polish had a similar finish as Harlow - it featured much more sparkle than the other polishes. I think it works perfectly with this shade of gray! Shown above is two easy coats without top coat.


Here it is with top coat. With the vibrant shimmer, I didn't think it looked too different with top coat, but I love it both ways!

Overall, I think it's safe to say I'm in love with this collection. No wonder Zoya keeps bringing them back! Matte polishes aren't generally that easy to work with, but these were smooth and flawless. And the colors were just wonderful. I just started typing out my favorites, but then I realized I was listing the entire collection... Basically, you need them all!

The Matte Velvet polishes are available from Zoya's website for $9 USD per bottle, or $54 for the entire collection. You can follow Zoya on Facebook and Twitter for updates and photos!

Do you own any Zoya Matte Velvets? Which one is your favorite?

These polishes were provided for my honest review.

HB Beauty Bar: China Glaze Apocalypse of Color Collection Review

20 October 2014

Hi guys! Today I have the new China Glaze Apocalypse of Color collection to show you - it's a Halloween inspired collection of six polishes, including one re-release of a glow in the dark top coat. I'm really impressed with this collection because it's really unique - usually, brands go for the vampy, "sexy" monsters for Halloween, but this collection is inspired by... ZOMBIES! I mentioned it before, but China Glaze is really killing it (no pun intended!) with the unique polishes this season.


The Apocalypse of Color collection consists of two textured polishes, one glitter topper, two glitter packed crellies, and a glow in the dark top coat. The colors really are appropriate for Halloween, and some of them might even scare you a bit! Let's have a look:


But Of Corpse is a super unique textured green polish with black microglitters. I almost didn't know what to make of this polish when I first saw it, but I decided it's awesome! It reminds me of Frankenstein's monster. I should note that this polish did react slightly with my base coat, and it cracked on the first coat, but it smoothed out with the next coat. (Although it might have just been the particular brand of base coat I used, Rejuvacote, because I spoke to a couple other bloggers and they said they had no problems with base coat!) Shown above is three coats without top coat - it was opaque in two, but I added a third thin one to cover up any cracking issues.


Next is I Love Your Guts, a pink-red textured polish with black microglitters, the sister to But Of Corpse. Again, I think this color is super unique and I loved it. I decided to skip the base coat for this swatch, and there was no cracking this time! Shown above is two easy coats without top coat.


Rest in Pieces is the glitter topper of this collection, and it features some orange and brown holographic hex and bar glitters, as well as small black hex glitters. I was pleasantly surprised with this topper, as I am not usually a fan of bar glitters, but this one applied perfectly - no placing or dabbing required, I just painted it on like a normal polish - without any effort! It reminds me of a hayride, and I love it paired over brown. Shown above is one easy coat over Zoya Emilia, with top coat.


Don't Let the Dead Bite is a unique soft nude crelly packed with metallic pink hexes in various sizes. This is one of the polishes that really surprised me from China Glaze! I've never seen a mainstream polish like this, and I love that they aren't afraid to "go there" - doesn't this totally look like brains to you? What a cool concept for a nail polish! Shown above is two easy coats with top coat.


Getting to Gnaw You is probably the most Halloween appropriate of the entire collection, a black fully opaque crelly filled with mini metallic orange hex glitters. This one is a classic, and a must have, especially if you want to get into the Halloween spirit without having a crazy color or design on your nails. Shown above is two easy coats and top coat.


And finally, we have the re-released Ghoulish Glow top coat, which can make any polish glow in the dark! This the first glow in the dark polish I ever owned (when I purchased it a couple years ago!) and it's still the brightest glow in the dark polish I've ever used! I always do funky designs with this glowing top coat to give people a good scare in the dark. It's so easy to charge, too - I find that some glow in the dark polishes take minutes or even hours to charge, but this one hardly needs any time before it's got that eerie glow. I paired it over 100% Pure Seafoam, because I wanted my nails to match the color in the bottle (but if you layer it over white, it'll look white, etc). It does dry to a slightly matte finish, but one quick coat of top coat fixed that up perfectly.

And I couldn't review this without trying to get a good glow in the dark shot!


Can you believe how much that bottle was glowing?! It was practically like holding a flashlight. My nails did look a bit brighter in real life, but I am no expert at taking photos in the dark, so please forgive the amateur photography!

Overall, I am really digging this collection! I honestly don't think I can pick a favorite, since they are all so cool and bring something unique to the table, and I am pleasantly surprised to say that I really like all of them.

These polishes are all available from HB Beauty Bar for $3.95 USD per bottle, and you can get an additional 15% off with the code POLISHCHALLENGE at checkout!


What do you think of this collection? Would you rock any of these for Halloween?!


These polishes were provided for my honest review.

31 Day Nail Art Challenge 2.0, Day 11: Flowers

19 October 2014

I bet you all thought I forgot about the challenge, huh?! Nope, the girls and I decided we needed to take a short break for other blogging duties, but we will be back this week for the rest of the prompts! (Although let me warn you now, mine will probably be late because I have so many exciting new polishes to review for you guys!) Anyway, today is Day 11 which is floral print, and I decided to try something pretty unique, inspired by this stock image, which combines cute cartoony florals with leopard print:


I couldn't decide if I loved this manicure or hated it, but I'm happy to say that it actually looks like the design it was inspired by, which is a big accomplishment to me! Another accomplishment is that I actually used all nail polish for this design, rather than acrylic paint (which I find to be a tad easier to work with), because I loved the color scheme so much and didn't think I could mix the right colors together for it.


Anyway, I did end up using ten (!!) different polishes, which you can see in my bottle photos below, but the base color is Essie Urban Jungle (of course). I used a small nail art brush for the flowers, and an orangewood stick to dot on the leopard print.


I do think that these look super unique and I really like the flower aspect - I might have to recreate these with a different color scheme and try it without the leopard spots, as I think they make the design slightly too busy.

And here is the massive load of polishes I used for this manicure, plus matte top coat:


And the massive amounts of links for review/purchase:
KBShimmer Life Rose On, review here
Cult Cosmetics Belmont Shore, review and nail art here
China Glaze If In Doubt, Surf it Out; China Glaze Sun Upon My Skin; China Glaze Shore Enuff; review here
Essie Urban Jungle, review here, nail art here, here and here
Zoya Ryan, review here
KBShimmer Stonewashed, review here
Essie Truth or Flare, review here
100% Pure Cornflower, purchase here

What do you think of today's floral nail art? Make sure you visit Lindsey and Meghan to see what they came up with for today's challenge!




Sweet Addictions Subscription Box: November Swatches and Review

18 October 2014

Hello everyone! The new Sweet Addictions subscription box will be available a bit early this month, so I've got swatches up today - November's theme is gemstones, so we have three full sized polishes inspired by some gorgeous stones.


And with this month's theme comes two new-to-me indie brands! I was really impressed with the formulas of all of them, and I loved the colors. They are rich and definitely appropriate for fall/winter. There was no little extra this month, but the three polishes are full sized and high quality, so it's still a valuable deal. Let's have an individual look at the colors:


Different Dimension Saphir Rose is a deep pink linear holographic polish with added pink shimmer. This shade was inspired by the pink saphire gemstone. I was really impressed with this polish - although the color is nothing new, I think the formula was really smooth. Slightly thick but easy to apply! Shown above is two easy coats without top coat.


Cupcake Polish Emerald Isle is a stunning forest green linear holographic polish. This shade was inspired by the emerald gemstone. I'm completely in love with this color! It seems completely appropriate for Christmas, as it reminds me of evergreen trees. And of course, the formula was wonderful, as I've come to expect with Cupcake Polish. Shown above is two easy coats without top coat.


Darling Diva Polish Tina the Labradorite is a beautiful medium blue linear holographic polish packed with blue and iridescent flakes. This polish was inspired by the labradorite stone. I love this one! It's definitely unique to my collection with the added flakes - they had an incredible shimmery effect in the light. The formula was slightly thick but easy to apply. Shown above is two easy coats with top coat.

Overall, I am really liking this month's box! If you enjoy holographic polishes in rich, deep colors, you will love it too. This box retails for $30 USD on the Cupcake Polish online shop, and includes the three polishes reviewed above. It will be available starting tomorrow, October 19th.

What do you think of these colors? Which is your favorite?


These polishes were provided for my honest review.