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I’ve been trying lots of blues and turquoises, but now I have on something that’s solely green. Essie First Timer (Resort Collection, 2013) is a bright spring green creme:
Picture taken in sunlight. The formula was thick yet runny. It didn’t apply very smoothly but was quite pigmented, so I only needed two coats for full coverage, with some touchups in between to make sure there would be no uneven spots. The formula wasn’t perfect, but I love this color. In terms of blue vs. yellow toned, I think this sits right in the middle; it doesn’t seem to lean either way (which I appreciate, because I feel like I don’t see that so often.) This green is light and springy, but it also has a great, almost neon-like vibrancy. It has a bold, stark quality on the nail, which I love to see in any season, but especially around summertime (I imagine this would look amazing against a tan.) I paired this with Sephora by OPI Alley Cat on my toes.
I tried one half of this collection in May, and this month I’ll wear the second half, starting with Essie In the Cab-ana (Resort Collection, 2013), a bright, aqua-turquoise creme:
Picture taken in sunlight. The formula was nicely thick and pigmented, and I got full coverage in two coats, with some touchups in between. When I bought this I thought the color would be really similar to Where’s My Chauffeur?. They are, in the sense that they’re both in the same broad color family, but they’re not as close as I thought. Where’s My Chauffeur? leans on the green side of turquoise, while In the Cab-ana leans more on the blue side. There are also differences in formula; In the Cab-ana has a thicker, more solidly opaque consistency. Both are bold and really pretty; this one makes me think of lovely turquoise seas as well. I paired it with Illamasqua Purity on my toes.
Most of the blues and greens I’ve tried so far this month have been really spring/summer-appropriate shades, so I’m trying one that’s a little unexpected for the season. Illamasqua Venous (Spring 2013) is a medium greenish teal creme:
Picture taken in weak sunlight (Please pardon the injury! I hope it heals fast so it won’t appear in many more of my NOTDs.) The formula was smooth and applied well in two coats. At first this struck me as a more fall-appropriate shade, since it wasn’t light and bright like the polishes I’ve been wearing recently. The more I look at it, though, the more I see it as spring-appropriate. It’s dusty, but not very muted. It’s kind of like a springy version of Essie School of Hard Rocks (both remind me of chalkboards.) It’s not the first shade I picture when I think of teal, but it just fits under that category, as one that has more green than blue. The name intrigues me; I normally wouldn’t think of this as the color of veins, but when I looked at my wrist, the shade seems like a match! I paired this with OPI Wooden Shoe Like to Know? on my toes.
I put on this color as it matches Novak Djokovic’s kit during this year’s French Open. I was really hoping to see him win today’s semifinal against Rafa Nadal and compete for the title on Sunday to complete the career slam, but it was not to be. I guess I’m particularly devastated because he practically had the match in his hands! Anyway, Ciaté Pepperminty is a cool, mint pastel creme:
Picture taken in natural light. (Pardon the blurriness of this photo; the weather matches my current mood.) This applied pretty well, and as expected for a pastel. It was streaky so I needed three coats for complete, even coverage. This isn’t the starkest of pastels, but it’s still light and nicely pigmented, so it qualifies. I probably already have something similar enough, but I do love mint polishes; they’re always pretty and they make me think of sweets. This one leans on the cool side, but it isn’t so blue that it looks turquoise. I paired this with OPI Pink Friday on my toes.
I’m finally finished trying this collection with Essie Where’s My Chauffeur (Winter 2012), a bright, greenish turquoise creme:
Picture taken in sunlight. (This looks just a little greener in real life.) This applied smoothly, though the formula didn’t quite have that really solid pigmentation. I needed three coats for full, streak-free coverage. It did turn out to have a pretty strong presence on the nail, even without that creamy, solid, pigmented type of formula. It’s kind of strange to think of this as part of a winter release, since this color seems so summery. I can’t resist a turquoise! This one leans a little on the green side. Turquoise shades are typically light, but I like that this one is actually pretty bold and bright, and not washed-out and pale. I feel more at home trying it at this time of year. It’s so pretty and makes me think of a gorgeous turquoise sea. I paired this with Sephora by OPI It’s My Pink on my toes.
I thought it’d be perfect to wear a polish named after Avenue Montaigne during Roland Garros. Essie Avenue Maintain (Spring 2013) is a French blue creme:
Picture taken in weak sunlight. This was well pigmented and applied smoothly; I got solid, opaque coverage in two coats. I am probably more inclined to call this polish a French blue because of its name, but this really does seem to match the shade you see when you look up “Bleu de France.” When I first looked at this indoors, I thought it was dusty, but seeing this outdoors, I see that it’s actually pretty bright. It’s not that sort of vibrant-bright, but it is very fresh and springy. A crisp, clean, clear blue. I paired this with OPI Gouda Gouda Two Shoes on my toes.
Following my own little personal tradition, I have a slew of shades in the blue/green family to try this month, starting with Essie Butler Please (Winter 2012), a bright cobalt blue creme:
Picture taken in sunlight. The formula was not as smooth as I hoped it’d be; it was nicely pigmented, but it was on the thick side and a little cuticle draggy. I got full coverage in two coats plus touchups, and topcoat helped level everything out. I think this must have neon pigment in it, because it dries satiny and its consistency kind of reminded me of a neon polish. Formula issues aside, I do love the color! It’s really bold and vibrant, and it does have that electric feel (hehe) to it, though not quite as much as Nails Inc. Baker Street, which is my favorite of this type of blue. I almost forgot that this is actually part of a winter collection, but it’s great for summer, too. I paired this with Sephora by OPI Pushing Your Luck on my toes.
Naturally, I had to follow up my previous NOTD with Illamasqua Harem (Spring 2013), an orchid pink creme:
Picture taken in natural light. This applied smoothly and was solidly pigmented, but had a streaky appearance, being a light color and all. I needed three coats for even coverage. This isn’t exactly a pastel, I’d just call it a light yet bright color, but it has the same quality of creme finish like Caress, with those sort of powdery particles. It’s something you notice more while painting than in the finished mani. I love the color, especially because it’s really pigmented. It’s a delicate, springy shade but its starkness gives it a strong look on the nail. I immediately thought of Crayola orchid when I saw this. I paired it with OPI Did It On ‘Em on my toes.
After a whole week of orange/coral/pink polishes, I switched over to something cooler in tone. Illamasqua Superstition (Spring 2013) is a fuchsia creme:
Picture taken in weak sunlight. This applied well, though it wasn’t one of those solidly pigmented cremes, so I needed three coats for full coverage. On the first coat, it looks really pink, then takes on more of a purple tone with additional coats, and it ends up looking fuchsia. This is pretty, but not unique; it’s in the same family as Grab and Obsess. There’s not much to say about it, but it’s still worth getting, particularly if you don’t already own the other two. I didn’t really need this, but I just liked getting all three polishes from this collection. I’m not exactly sure which collection this belongs to; it seems to go along with Harem and Venous, but unlike the other two, which are also available on Illamasqua’s site, this one is only available through Sephora. I paired it with OPI Fly on my toes.
I previously said that my NOTDs this week would’ve made for a great ombre manicure. The first was the most orange, and this is the most pink. Ciaté Kiss Chase is a pinky coral, or corally pink creme (I couldn’t decide):
Picture taken in natural light. (Again, I lament the lack of sunlight for picture-taking.) This applied well in three coats. I couldn’t quite pin this color down, as it looked so different in various lighting conditions. Whenever I was indoors, it seemed like a really pink-toned coral, but when I was outdoors, it seemed like a pink, with perhaps a drop of coral tone (as it appears in my photo). Either way, it’s a very pretty and sweet color. I think I actually like its indoor “face” better, as I adore the really pink corals. I see this as a flirty color, but the name may be a contributing factor to that. I do like that it’s girly, but not in the more obvious Barbie-pink way; I appreciate seeing more warm pinks out there! I paired this with China Glaze Caribbean Blue on my toes.