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I definitely had to fit in one more red creme before the end of February. China Glaze Red Satin (Holiday Joy, Holiday 2012) is a cool cherry red creme:
Picture taken in sunlight. The formula was smooth and applied well. It’s more of a jelly-creme than a solid creme, so it has a slightly squishy, translucent look, but I still only used two coats for full coverage. This is the cool counterpart to With Love. If that sort of red makes me think of pin-ups, this sort of red makes me think of classic, old Hollywood glamour. The sunlight in my photo is really brightening the shade, but in low light it does look darker. Although I’m sure I have other similar polishes, I’m glad I didn’t skip this one either! My nails are a little longer now and I just love how this red looks on them. Its finish makes me think of maraschino cherries. I paired this with China Glaze Blue Paradise on my toes.
I’m concluding a week of reds with Lippmann Ruby Red Slippers (“Celebrate” 10th Anniversary Set), a black base with red glitter and hex sequins:
Picture taken in sunlight. The black base is on the sheer side but it’s absolutely loaded with red glitter. This applied well, and I managed to get an even distribution of glitter on the nail. I got full coverage in three coats. This requires two coats of topcoat to smooth the finish out, but one is enough to set it nicely. I love how much red glitter there is; it’s definitely not just sprinkled in there! It’s so densely packed that from a distance, it can almost look like a just a dark red glitter. Even without the suggestion of the name, this makes me think of Dorothy’s ruby slippers, with a gothic twist. It seems like a Christmasy color scheme, but I was thinking Oz when I paired this with Barielle Date Night on my toes.
I’m jumping the gun by a few hours, but Happy Valentine’s Day! Last year I wore Love Marilyn and I really loved it, so this time I thought I’d wear what looks to be its gold counterpart. China Glaze Pure Joy (Holiday Joy, Holiday 2012) is a red and gold hexagonal glitter packed in a clear base:
Picture taken in sunlight. The glitter is dense enough to build to opacity on its own. It looked almost there in two coats, but I needed a third for full, even coverage. The surface stays pretty rough after only one coat of topcoat, but I just wanted to set the polish and I wasn’t really after a glassy-smooth finish. This pretty much looks like Love Marilyn but with gold hex glitter instead of silver. There’s a good amount of gold glitter, more than the silver in Love Marilyn, so it provides more than just sparse pops of a contrasting color. The gold breaks up the red nicely without overtaking it. The shade of red glitter appears warmer than in Love Marilyn. I’m not sure if it’s actually a different red, or if the gold glitter just gives a warmer overall cast to the color. I’m not complaining about the similarity, because I love this polish too! It’s very sparkly and absolutely gorgeous. I paired this with China Glaze Midnight Kiss on my toes.
I thought it’d be perfect to kick off Valentine’s week not just with a red creme, but one that has a name like this. China Glaze With Love (Holiday Joy, Holiday 2012) is a bright warm red creme:
Picture taken in sunlight. The formula was smooth and very pigmented; I got full coverage in two coats. This is a very warm shade, as warm as a red can be before veering off into red-orange territory. It’s also very bright and falls under that fantastic pin-up red category. Although I have many bright red cremes already, I’m glad I didn’t skip this one; it just has a great presence on the nail. It may have been released with a holiday collection, but with the color and name, it just screams “valentine” to me. It’s probably because I’m wearing it around this time of year, but it has me feeling amorous. I paired this with Sephora by OPI Forever Wild on my toes.
I may have tried another red glitter just a couple of manis ago, but this is a different animal. My last glitterbomb of the year is a sure stunner. Nails Inc. Covent Garden Market (The After Party Set) is a bright ruby red glitter packed in a clear base:
Picture taken in sunlight. (I actually did this mani yesterday but it’d have been a shame to not photograph this without decent light.) There’s a sticker on the bottle cap that says this is a full coverage glitter, and that claim is definitely accurate! I got full coverage in two coats. While still wet, the glitter tends to get pushed to the nail tip with a normal brush stroke, so I filled in bald spots between coats with a dabbing motion instead. I also painted and did cleanup on each nail one by one, since wet glitter is much easier to manipulate. The formula was good, though it did thicken up as I continued to use it, as is typical of this kind of glitter. It does dry flat on its own, but even a single coat of topcoat will bring out its lovely depth. (More coats of topcoat would be needed to achieve a glassy smooth surface.) This is probably the best clear-based glitter I’ve ever tried! Not only does it achieve full coverage in only two coats, but both the color and finish are gorgeous! This shade of red is not just bright, but very vibrant. It has this glow that I don’t typically see in glitterbomb finishes. Obviously it sparkles beautifully under bright light, but it still looks so dimensional even in low light. It’s not obvious on the finished mani, but there are different sizes of glitter in there. It may only be small and smaller sizes, but this subtle difference goes a long way in making the overall finish more interesting. This polish looks so glamorous and sexy; it’s definitely distracting because I find myself staring at my nails too often. I paired this with China Glaze Little Drummer Boy on my toes.
For my last red creme of the year, I chose Essie She’s Pampered (Winter 2012), a bright cherry red creme:
Picture taken in natural light. The formula is not of the solid creme variety, but more like a milky jelly. I still got full coverage in two smooth coats. It’s not terribly unique but this sort of pin-up red will always be exciting to me. The shade is bright but not orangey at all. It doesn’t seem to be that cool-toned either, so I think this is a pretty neutral red. I love how bright it is, especially for a winter collection. The name just makes me want to go to the spa! I paired this with Color Club Fresh Mint over Sally Hansen Mint Sprint (Insta-Dri) on my toes.
Happy Christmas! On this occasion I’m wearing another stunning red. Essie Leading Lady (Winter 2012) is a garnet red shimmer packed with ruby red glitter:
Picture taken in sunlight. This applied well, and pretty smoothly for a glitter-loaded formula. I got full coverage in two coats, with some touchups. As soon as I got this polish, I knew I’d end up wearing it for Christmas. I love it; it’s absolutely gorgeous! I didn’t expect the base to be a shimmer, so that was a nice, unique twist. I like that overall, the color looks darker than your typical, Christmasy ruby red. It’s a little vampy! The brightness comes from the glitter, which looks great against the darker red base. It kind of gives the finish that burning ember quality. It has that lit-from-within look as well. This is a glitter, after all, so it has a beautiful sparkle. I can see why this is called “Leading Lady,” it definitely looks glamorous. I paired it with China Glaze Jolly Holly on my toes.
Starting with this pre-Christmas mani, I have a slew of reds to try through the end of December. Chanel Malice (Éclats du Soir, Holiday 2012) is a deep, ruby-burgundy shimmer:
Picture taken in weak sunlight. The formula was so smooth and glided on effortlessly in two coats. This is breathtakingly gorgeous! The contrast between the darker red base and the brighter red shimmer is perfect. It’s deep and vampy but not almost-black. It definitely has that lit-from within look, where the color looks brighter in the center and darker around the edges. It also has a subtle metallic glow (the brushstrokes are totally covered up by the shimmer and are imperceptible as long as you paint in straight lines.) I catch myself staring at my nails a lot, especially when the delicate shimmer is illuminated by the light. The name may not be cheerful and holiday-like, but I love it anyway, and I think it’s very fitting for this wickedly sultry color. I paired it with OPI Tease-y Does It on my toes.
So far this month I’ve been trying one red polish per week, so I’m continuing the pattern with OPI The Spy Who Loved Me (Skyfall Collection, Holiday 2012), a bright candy apple red with red and gold microglitter:
Picture taken in natural light. (Unfortunately the lack of sunlight doesn’t show off how it sparkles, but with the depth this polish has, you can still see that it’s there.) This applied well; even with the slight jelly-ness of the base, the formula was still pigmented and I got complete coverage in two coats. This type of polish is not unique, but I still get at least one every time the holiday collections roll around because red microglitters are gorgeous! I love how the formula is strongly pigmented but still appears sheer enough to let the microglitter shine through. The depth of finish combined with the smooth and glossy surface makes it seem like I’m looking at the glitter through glass.Perhaps I’m being influenced by the gloomy weather but this looks extra bright and cheery. I can see why this shade of red has the word “love” in the name; in addition to being very holiday-appropriate, it also looks Valentine-y. I paired this with China Glaze Poinsettia on my toes.