Tag Archives: Nail

Nicole by OPI | First Impressions

Nicole by OPI

I’m a big fan of OPI but I had never tried anything from their Nicole by OPI diffusion line. Originally designed for US drugstores, it’s now easily available on the UK high street with Superdrug carrying it. It is cheaper than the OPI range at £7.99. I was sent the above by Direct Cosmetics who have a selection of shades for just £1.99 each.

I’ve been using the Strengthener Plus* under my nail polish for about two weeks now and I am finding that my nails are peeling a lot less. They still not super strong but we’re getting there gradually.  And the treatment itself doesn’t effect how long nail polish lasts which is a good thing, nothing worse than base or top coats which peels your polish.

Nicole by OPI

This is the appropriately named ‘I Orchid You Not’* – nice to see OPI continue their punderful names to all their ranges. This is a darker take on the 2014 colour of the year, Radiant Orchid. I used two coats with applied really easily and dried well. One thing I would say is that it’s quite a bit darker than it looks in the bottle and I’m not too sure why.

Nicole by OPI

The second colour I have is ‘I’m A Pool For Love’*. I tried really hard to take a decent photo of this and failed miserably so sorry about that. It is actually a dark, duochrome shimmer with purple base which flashes electric blue and bronze. It really reminds me of OPI’s ‘Ink’ but with an added golden bronze shimmer. I love this kind of ‘black but not black’ look so I love this.

Both polishes benefit from having the same kind of brush as the main OPI range – flattish, a slight fan and not too wide which is my favourite kind of brush. This makes application super easy and quick. I used three coats for each and they dried fairly quickly between coats and didn’t drag. Staying power was pretty standard for me – about three or four days before it was badly chipped.

Overall, I can’t see much difference between OPI and Nicole by OPI. The main OPI range has more shades but Nicole is definitely catching up so I will definitely be keeping my eye on this more affordable option.


China Glaze | Point Me to the Party

China Glaze Point Me to the Party

I have to share this as it’s my new favourite thing ever! It’s China Glaze’s ‘Point Me to the Party’ from their new Electric Nights summer 2015 collection.

China Glaze Point Me to the Party China Glaze Point Me to the Party

I paired it with the pure white ‘Cotton’ from the Barry M Gelly collection to really make the neon pop. ‘Point Me to the Party’ is a clear base with hexagonal glitter in neon pink, orange, blue and purple. The glitter is in two sizes and gives fairly even coverages. This is one coat applied normally, and then some deliberate glitter placement on the second coat.

Summer nails sorted! I bought this from Nail Polish Direct for £3.95 (£5 off RRP) which is a website I really rate.

Topshop White Speckle Nail Polish

Topshop Speckle Nail Polish

I don’t buy a lot in Topshop, but I cannot resist their nail polishes. They’re among my favourite brands, both for the colour range and quality. On my last visit I noticed these pastel white speckles. There were an orange, blue, yellow, pink and white as well, but I plumped for the lilac and grey. These were £6 each.

Topshop Nail Polish

The lilac shade is ‘Everybody Get Up’. The formula is very sheer, this is three coats and you can still see the nail tip line. It has a glossy finish but one which is dulled down by the matte particles in the polish.

Topshop Dancing in the Dark

The grey is ‘Dancing in the Dark’. This is more of a greige than a straightforward grey. Again, it is very sheer. I find that a little disappointing as I was hoping for more of an opaque finish but I think that pairing this with a coloured base coat would help a lot.

Despite this, I do like these. I no longer really do much nail art, but I enjoy having something a bit different on my nails. This kind of matte, speckle effect is right up my street.

Seventeen Black Cat

Seventeen Black CatHere’s a super summery colour for you! In all fairness, everyone need a good quality black nail polish in their stash. I’m fairly loyal to Nails Inc ‘Black Taxi’ but it’s a tad pricey so I’m always open to cheaper alternatives. Seventeen had a 3 for 2 offer on the other week so I decided to try out their new gel range. Gel nail colours are all the rage nowadays with everyone trying to recreate a salon finish at home. Seventeen have been pretty bold by writing “up to 8 days wear” on the lid so let’s see how it holds up.

Seventeen Black CatApplication is nice and easy. It has a small, flat brush with rounded off corners which you can’t go wrong with. It was opaque and smooth in two coats. I didn’t apply a topcoat as I don’t think you should need to with gel effect polishes but I did use Orly Rubberised Basecoat. The finish had a good shine as you can see above. The first day was great, no chips, but… it did chip on day two. Not too badly, but on a couple of nails and black looks bad with chips so I removed it at the end of the second day. So no, it won’t last 8 days. I have never found a polish that does, even with base and topcoat so I’m not fussed about this but it might put some off. However, at £3.99 a bottle, I think it is a good buy and there are loads of colours to choose from. I really like the look of the grey ‘Long Island’ also.

So, not quite as great as the Models Own HyperGel, but the only black gel colour I’ve seen so ‘Black Cat’ gets a goth thumbs up from me.

Barry M Gelly Nail Effects | New Pastel Shade

Barry M Pastel Gelly shadesHello gorgeous pastels! The Barry M Gelly range is probably my most favourite nail polish collection so I was most excited to see three new shades added. So much so that I wrote the release date in my diary. Yep, I’m that sad. The three shades in question are milky pastels, a notoriously difficult formula to master so I was interested to see how they’d perform.

Barry M Gelly Sugar AppleThis is ‘Sugar Apple’, a mint green which is actually brighter on the nails than I expected it to be. This is with three coats. I found it a lot harder to apply evenly than the brighter shades in the range but it looked ok by the third coat. I didn’t use a top coat, the high shine finish means this step isn’t necessary.

Barry M Gelly Rose Hip‘Rose Hip’ is my favourite of the bunch and is a delicate baby pink. Again, this was three coats but was much more even on application than the other two.

Barry M Gelly HuckleberryLastly, ‘Huckleberry’, a lovely pale blue. I struggled with this one the most and had to apply four coats to ensure it was even. However, the colour is beautiful so worth it if you have the patience.

Overall, the result is pretty much what I was expecting. Trickier to handle than the brighter colours but the final colour makes up for the additional time you have to spend over it and they deliver the high-shine, gel-like finish as promised. I love all three colours, especially ‘Rose Hip’ which is quite different to anything else I own.

Barry M Gelly CollectionThis is my complete collection. Top row, left to right: ‘Papaya’; ‘Prickly Pear’; ‘Dragonfruit’; ‘Guava’; ‘Greenberry’; ‘Blueberry’. Bottom row, left to right: ‘Key Lime’; ‘Mango’; ‘Lychee’; ‘Sugar Apple’; ‘Rose Hip’; ‘Huckleberry’.

Next on the shopping list is ‘Grapefruit’ – the bright pink. No such thing as too many nail polishes.

The ‘Mani Monday’ Wish List

Mani Monday wish listA girl can never have too many nail polishes right? Well cosmetics companies certainly seem to think so as they keep bringing out more and more must haves. Here’s a mixture of new and old polishes that currently at the top of my wish list. Oh, have I mentioned that it’s my birthday this month?

The Model’s Own Speckled Eggs range looks amazing! Like the Illamasqua I’mperfection range but just £5 a pop instead of £15. I think I need all 5 shades and a big bag of Cadbury Mini Eggs too of course.

I’ve been after Nails Inc’s ‘Haymarket’ and ‘Chelsea Square’ for ages. Nails Inc kindly sent me a discount code for use in March so I think I’ll finally be getting these.

I’m yet to try Sinful Colours and ‘Easy Going’ looks like a great shade to test out the range. At only £1.99 a bottle I can’t go far wrong.

The Rimmel Sweetie Crush range looks like a pastel version of the Space Dust collection which I loved. I’m especially liking the look of ‘Violet Swizzle’.

I can never choose which Topshop nail colours I want most, I just want them all! Along with the Barry M Gellys and Bourjois 1 Seconde, these are my favourite brand of polish, such great quality and gorgeous packaging. ‘Whizz Kid’ and ‘Rose Petal’ caught my eye during my last browse.

Chocolate scented nail polish remover. That is all. Thanks Ciate!

What’s on your mani wish list?

Maybelline Street Artist Top Coat Alley Attitude

Maybelline Color Show Street Artist Alley Attitude Top coatThe Maybelline Color Show Street Artist Top Coat in ‘Alley Attitude’ is the newest addition to my little nail polish collection. Seeing the name, I knew I definitely had to try this one. The base is clear with matte pale blue and black glitters suspended in it.

Maybelline Street Artist Top Coat Alley AttitudeThe glitters are a mixture of different sized hexagons and bars and are really dense in the bottle. The above is one coat with no fishing and minimal glitter placement required. This could be easily built up to near opacity in just 3 coats I’d think. The glitters lie nice and flat with no pesky ‘tacoing’.

Barry M Lychee and Maybelline Alley AttitudeI paired it with Barry M ‘Lychee’ and I really like this combination. ‘Alley Attitude’ would also look great over white and other pale colours such as pink or lilac.

Maybelline Colour Show Street Artist Top Coat Alley AttitudeOverall I’m really pleased with my bottle of ‘Alley Attitude’. I picked it up on a whim since it was in the Boots buy 1 get 1 half price offer when I was buying Baby Skin and I couldn’t resist the name. I actually like it on more than I thought I would and I’m sure I’ll get lots of wear out of it over spring and summer. At £3.99 a bottle you can’t really go wrong and I might also pick up ‘White Splatter’ from this range which looks like a mix of white, purple and blue. Also available are ‘Boombox Black’ (black and green) and ‘Urban Vibe’ (black and orange). Definitely something a bit different in the top coat world.

What do you think of the Street Artist Top Coat range from Maybelline? Will you be picking any up?