Thursday, July 31, 2008

Duochromes, part two of...?

Well, technically, this polish is not even a duochrome. It's a deep burgundy with aqua-teal-blue shimmer; but this shimmer is so strong that one really can call this amazing concoction a duochrome.

One of my favorite polishes - it's definitely on my top 5 - and one of the best Misa's creations ever. Embroidered Emerald, ladies and gentlemen (mostly ladies, I guess).

This nail polish is absolutely flawless: color, consistency, application - everything is perfect.

Enough words, though.

I made this picture to show off an amazing blue undertone of EE. It's visible under very extreme angle only, but the blue is superb; it reminds me about peacock feathers or maybe blue silk - very exotic kind of blue.

This picture has been taken with ridiculously exaggerated flash - this is why polish looks patchy. Flash brings out both teal shimmer and burgundy base.

And this is how Embroidered Emeralds looks like in normal daylight:

I hope that Misa will never, ever discontinue one of the best colors ever created. I'm going to get a back-up bottle, though - better safe than sorry.


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Duochromes, part one of...?

Don't ask me what's my favorite Misa polish; unless you want to hear tiny "bop-bop-bop", accompanying my brain exploding. I do know, thou, what is Misa signature - it's duochromes. Duochrome in a nail world means color-changing polish. One can see two - or more - different colors under different angles, depending on lighting. Change can be rather dramatic (from lilac to green, for instance) or within the same color range (from a pale pink to a dark pink).

Haute Hippie is a part of a great Misa duochrome collection. Not the best example, in my humble opinion. Beige color is very anemic, or should I say boring and non-flattering?
Pink face of this polish is OK...yeh, just OK:
/I'm biased - I hate three-coaters and this one is really, really sheer. 4 coats to achieve the bottle color./

Bojangles, on the other hand, (no pun intended) is one of my summer favorites. Flashing from a very wearable metallic orange to a hot pink. Epitome of a fun summer color.
Wearable, right? And orange is difficult to pull off - for me at least.

And for desert today - beautiful Foxy and Folksy. From a colder lilac to spectacular golden amber. Can you believe this is the same polish?
Bonus: it's a dupe of hard to find OPI Merryberry Mauve. I have them both, and like Misa better. Not that I'm biased...

To be continued.


Monday, July 28, 2008

Random thought and random swatches

Blueberry Glaze (I would never understand why they decided to discontinue this color.)

I love nail polish because it can hardly fail you. It always fits; it won't make you ass look fat; it won't make you feet hurt. It can tell "I'm shy" or make in your face kind of statement. Any damage is reversible with a help of remover. It's even better than shoes.

Hand Spun Silk


Sunday, July 27, 2008

Tools of the trade, or my must-haves - Part 1

What do I use to keep my hands, cuticles and mani in a good shape?

1. Disposable gloves. All the time. No, I'm not talking about "dirty chores", like dishes or floor scrubbing - it's kinda given. Try using gloves all the time: for dusting, for instance, or strawberry hulling. You are not going to believe the difference.

3 excuses I hear all the time:
1. I cannot do dishes in gloves. It's just uncomfortable!
- Tell it to a surgeon, performing...well - brain surgery. Peeling a potato is a bit less tricky.

2. I feel like a stupid character from a stupid commercial.
- I'd rather look stupid than have bad cuticles.

3. It's expensive.

All in all - go and get them.

2. Cuticle remover. Weekly.
I use ol' good (and inexpensive) Sally Hansen in a blue bottle. Advertised 15 seconds is definitely not enough; don't be afraid to leave remover on your cuticles for longer. Exercise your common sense, thou - this staff literally dissolves raggedy, dry cuticles and can dissolve a thin (or not so thin) layer of your nails as well. And this would be a warm, friendly welcome to any nail infection - ask me how I know. After a painful lesson I use cuticle remover on polished nails only: polish creates a protective barrier for the nail.

3. Cuticle eraser. 256 times a day.
Cuticle eraser, despite its name, does not erase cuticles, but rather conditiones, moisturaises and gently exfoliates them. There are many available, and you can use whatever brand you prefer.
My favorites:
- Poshe AHA Citicles Care aka Poshe in a yellow tube
- Creative Nail Design Cuticle Eraser. Comes in a big, economy-size tube, but smells like dead lemons and has a tendency to break down to oil and white goo over time.
- Zoya Qtica Cuticle repair Balm. A bit greasy, but works wonderful for winter time or to revive dried, over-acetoned cuticles. Unlike Poshe and CND, does not contain exfoliating AHA.

Apply eraser as often as you can. I keep a huge tube in a car, to smack on my cuticles while in a traffic and near every sink in a house.

Think outside the box. Or, in this case, outside the tube.

I accidently discovered that Kerasal foot ointment works wonders for my cuticles. Better yet, its generic version from RiteAid does the same job for less $$!

My Nail Board buddy Ponchy introduced all nail boarders to the magic of cheap AHA care for the cuticles. Alpha Hydrox Foot & Problem Area cream with 12% AHA is an ideal solution for toes. For $8 plus change I use it on my feet very generously; it's good for fingernails as well. Just don't forget about your sunscreen: AHA makes skin very photosensitive.


Misa around the Globe blogs

Scrangie posted spectacular swatches of Poisoned Passion and some look-alikes for upcoming collection.

The Polish Addict did a very thorough review of Sugar Sugar collection. Check out her layering experiments with Sugar Sugar polishes! Did you know Sugar Girl was a duochrome? I sure did not.


Thursday, July 24, 2008

Told ya!..

Misa Fall Love Bite is indeed very dupable .
I thought it would be a twin of Essie Clutch Me If You Can, but I was wrong. Love Bite is almost an exact copy of Misa's older creation - Stiletto.

See for yourself! Thumb to pinky: Love Bite, Clutch me if you can, Love Bite, Stiletto and OPI Hollywood and Wine.

Love Bite has more bright red, almost magenta, in its base, while Stiletto's base is on a brownish side. Essie is completely different from Misa, they are cousins at best. By the way - as much as I adore this Essie's color, I have to admit that this is an epitome of bad application. I mean, it's really, really bad.

And I have good news for those who have been coveting hard to find OPI oldie Hollywood and Wine. Get yourself either Love Bite ot Stiletto. Or both, for that matter.


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Reader request:

This is for MUAer Shadowline, who wanted to take a closer look at Fatal Affair. Well, this polish is definitely worth looking at!

Indoor/in shadow shimmer is barely visible, and it looks like you wear a very dark, even blackened purple creme. Something like OPI Lincoln Park at Midnight, I would say:

Sunlight brings out gorgeous multicolored shimmer: you can see pink, blue and lilac.

It is multicolored, indeed, but it's not garish by any stretch of imagination.

Last pic is a bit off focus (well, it's well off focus), but I believe it wonderfully represents reach, velvety color.

By the way, I don't think this one has a dupe. It somewhat close to Flair by Sally Hansen (Scrangie has a great picture), but FA is much deeper and has less obvious shimmer. And certainly, it's not a re-do of Misa Dreamy Purple.


Monday, July 21, 2008

Misa Fall - comparisons

First comparison - by reader request, for Gymnastgirly - Misa A Sin Worth Committing and OPI Yogo-Ta Get This Blue.

Honestly, you have to be a nail polish fanatic to spot the difference.
Misa is a tad deeper and has less shimmer to it; and shimmer is aqua. YGGTB has more purple and shimmer in it is more teal than aqua.

Both pics, thumb to pinky: SWC, Orly Witch's Blue, SWC, OPI YGGTB, Misa Blueberry Glaze.

Even if you already have OPI, I would recommend SWC, for brush is so much better.

Second set is for my own pleasure: Zoya Jasmeen and Forbidden Lust.
I have to admit, while they are definitely sisters, Jasmeen is a more complex shade, thanks to amazing golden-bronze shimmer. But they do look very much alike (both pics - thumb FL, index - J middle - FL, ring - J, pinky - FL):


Misa Fall

Where do I begin?

First of all - this is an amazing collection. Unique colors (except for one, but I'll talk about it later) with a very decent application.

I start with the one I was sure would be my favorite - Love Bite. It's the only creme in entire collection; and to my surprise, I'm not so fond of it. It's not exactly a creme, it's closer to a jelly finish (= a bit tricky to apply). Love Bite is a good Fall color, but it's kinda ordinary.

As you can see, it's close to Essie Clutch me if you can; Misa's Stiletto; and, I suspect, many more vampies out there.

Dying Love. I hope gray lovers will be thrilled. It has an obvious yet sophisticated shimmer to it (mother of pearl-y), it's neutral on a warm side and completely opaque in one coat. I love a bit of a green-blue hue:

Can you see a distinctive green hue in the bottle?

Forbidden Lust. Fall version of my favorite Fuchsia Love. Purple with a hint of bronze. It reminds me of Zoya Jasmeen (I'm planning to post comparison pics in a couple of days).

Looks a lot like Jasmeen, right? But formula is much, much better.

Here comes three winners:

2nd place - Fatal Affair. Amazingly rich, velvety eggplant, loaded with multicolored microshimmer. Love, love, love this one!

1st place is a tie. I could not decide which one is better!
Toxic Seduction. Deep yet muted emerald. Imagine emerald with a sexy 5 o'clock shade - this would be Toxic Seduction (yes, it's difficult to imagine emerald with a razor, shaving, but I cannot come up with a better metaphor). See for yourself:

Second pic with a flash, to show off an amazing glow:

A Sin Worth Committing instantly hit the highest mark among all my blues. It's deep, it's velvet-like, it has a great aqua shimmer. Reminds me of Misa retired oldy - Blueberry Glaze, but without purple note. Sin totally kick my beloved Witch's Blue, let alone YGTTB by OPI.

Well... I would say it's a total recovery from rather blah Sugar Sugar collection. Formula seems a bit drippy (give me my bad chemicals back, Misa!), but all of them apply really well.

Please excuse my messy application, I was excited like... I don't even know, like who.

PS: All polishes are courtesy of Misa Cosmetics. Thank you so much!


Friday, July 18, 2008

Misa Fall preview is here!

I. Cannot. Wait. to get them!


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

I wish, I wish... (Fall collection)

Have no idea about upcoming collection (yet). I wish for 6 deep, vampy cremes. OK, one can be opaque gray - I don't care for such colors, but 50% of NB would be happy.

No shimmers for this fall, please, pretty please...


Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Calling all closet emos

I've been waiting impatiently for the Fall to come. Am I the only one? Anyone? Can you hear me? I want to wear my beloved vampies and do not look like I have problems fitting in.

OK, people, I have to admit: I would never be hired by certain companies, for I have minor problems with an uber-sunny attitude (more specifically - lack thereof). Pink and neon summer we've been having is great for sure, but I'm just a bit tired. Tired of smiley surfer dudes wearing shorty pants and tired of their fluorescent-painted girlfriends, all mod about brights.

All in all, I decided to break open my untried bottle of Misa Stiletto. And I don't care if I look like a prematurely aged emo, wearing this color in the middle of summer.

It's a deep, deep dark brown with a clotted-blood-red base. It's broody, moody and surely capable of a statement. Yes, I'm talking about Stiletto, not about Hugh Laurie.

Enough talk, here it goes -

Full sunlight:

Partial shade:

Glossy beauty, isn't it?

Application: 4 (a bit streaky)
Opacity: 5

PS: I'm going to take it off tomorrow. Today a really nice girl in a local coffee shop asked, staring at my nails: "Honey, how are you? Hanging in there?" I don't want to scare nice Atlanta gals - at least for a while.