Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Christmas Manis and Top Polishes of the Year

First, an end of the year recap:

One of my favorite new polishes this year was Zoya Rebel, a sky blue shimmer that I only got to wear for a single day because I suddenly had a job interview scheduled the next day. This color made me sooo happy to look at, and it was a pleasure to apply. Other favorite blues was the not-new Zoya Blu (powder blue, dream formula!!! unbelievable for such a pale pastel), Essie In the Cab-Ana (bright pool liner blue, super summery), and China Glaze So Blue Without You (bright blue foil, gorgeous, but stains like a mutha).

I loved funky greens this year: Urban Outfitters Gotta Have It (you really do gotta have it), China Glaze Highlight of My Summer, China Glaze Be More Pacific, Finger Paints Margarita Mambo, and China Glaze It's Alive! I believe I was also a fan of China Glaze Grass is Lime Greener and China Glaze I'm With the Lifeguard.

My favorite collections were China Glaze's Spring Flourish and Crinkled Chrome. I may very well be the only person in the world to say either. I got all the Crinkled Chromes I saw on clearance (use two coats and apply a top coat to prevent chips; the aluminum foil texture will stay intact). I eventually got almost all of the Spring Flourishes besides the ones that weren't ultra bright. My favorite was Lotus Begin; I went nuts over it. I was also a huge fan of Spring in My Step, a peachy-pink I believe China Glaze will come very close to replicating a few times during their 2015 spring collection.

And assorted: OPI Do You Have this Color in Stock-holm? and Snow Globetrotter.

Other older ones: China Glaze High Hopes (electric guava, perfect formula), OPI Mrs. O'Leary's BBQ (finally I swatched this! my new favorite vamp, and it doesn't require 2 coats, praise), and Sally Hansen Diamond Strength Diamonds and Rubies (easy and opaque, perfect retro red).

And dun-dun-dun, favorite indies: KBShimmer Pine-ing for Yule (sure to be a Christmas favorite for years to come) and Sand in My Stocking (a summer fave, despite being a Christmas glitter). Speaking of...

Christmas manis:

China Glaze Phat Santa
I know you love my indoor, nighttime, flash-lighting photo. This is pretty color-accurate. A much darker red than SH Diamonds & Rubies, but still glamorous. I was very frustrated to find that it requires 3 coats, but the application wasn't difficult, and now I find the 3 coats tolerable.

OPI Christmas Gone Plaid topped with Urban Outfitters Champagne Toast
 Christmas Gone Plaid is a very dark cool green, I daresay a bit too dark for me. Champagne Toast is a glitter topper with white in varying sizes and large gold. The gold sometimes sticks out, so I would use two layers of top coat next time. I was going through a "evergreen with popcorn garland" look, and I believe I accomplished that.

Jindie Nails Candy Cane
Sheer white with red and green glitter.  I used 3 coats on most nails, but my right middle and ring have 4. You may notice that those look the most white. Next time I would layer this over a white polish. A white polish may require as many coats to get looking decent, but I would rather have that than covering up the glitter. I would prefer a glitter topper in a clear base, but overall it was a really cute peppermint bark look, even though some of the nails looked more pink up close.

Jindie Nails Noel over China Glaze Holly-Day
Noel is micro glitter in red, white, and sparkly light green, easy to apply. Holly-Day is a comfortably dark green creme that needed 2-3 coats. Together they were a subtle, but suitable Christmas look. I associate this manicure with a failed attempt to have an ultra-Christmasy night out. Nothing went my way! I missed out on the hours that the Willard Hotel sold their amazing mulled wine (it is pure heaven that cannot be explained), the White House Christmas tree was fricking turned off by the time I got there (what the frick!), and the Four Seasons hotel bar did NOT stud the orange peel in my drink with cloves. Those cloves were the reason I ordered it! None of the drinks I ordered that night were worth the luxury-level prices, but the one my friend got at the Four Seasons was. Of course now I can't remember what the name of it was, but it was a dessert, and it was luxurious.

Wet 'n' Wild 2% Milk
Another gorgeous nighttime indoor photo. This was for another job interview. Whether or not I got it is still up in the air.  3 coats, and the streaks were pretty minimal for a sheer. My bottle leans towards beige, I believe, and it comes out as lighter and brighter than my natural nail color, though conservatively so.

My go-to Christmas manicure! OPI In My Santa Suit with silver stripes (Sally Hansen striper), China Glaze Jolly Holly and Mingle with the Kringle topped with Party Hearty. The OPI and the gold are among my favorite polishes, Party Hearty is something I use every single year, I love the wrapping paper look it has over the gold here, I love the candy cane look, aaaaand I need to use Jolly Holly way more this season because it is a wintry green that does NOT look black under any light.

Zoya Ginessa (silver shimmer that is a lovely sheer at 1 coat, and completely opaque at 2) topped with KB Shimmer Pine-ing for Yule. PfY, which was a Christmas gift, has smaller red stars, holographic green triangles, and holo silver glitter in various sizes. Two layers of top coat made the pointy edges not stick out off of the nail. This was worn post-Christmas during NYE, because guess what? That's still the Christmas season. I loved it. Another KBShimmer I received for Christmas and wore the weekend after the holiday was All Decked Out; next time I would layer that over another green, because it requires many coats for an even, opaque color, and use two layers of top coat.

China Glaze Peace on Earth topped with Urban Outfitters Midnight KissPeace on Earth, a Christmas gift, is a metallic shimmer that varies between bronze and olive. Easy formula. It feels very similar to the base color of all those Chanel Peridot types from recent times. Midnight Kiss is glitter topper with gold hexes and holographic silver shards. The mixed metal was a good combo with the warm tone of Peace on Earth, and the two together are carrying on a holiday festiveness (both are holiday polishes) without being too overt.