Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Interview with a Polish Blogger: Nicole (MagicMaid)

I thought it would be fun to do a series of interviews with Polish Bloggers so that you all can get to know a little bit more about the ladies behind the polish swatches! If you're interested in being featured please shoot me an email at

I am starting the series off with Nicole, or Niki. I've "known" Niki for a while now, ever since she made videos on YouTube. She's one of the nicest people I have "met" online, and one of the faces who helps make the polish community a welcoming and positive place to hang around. I hit Niki with some fun questions and she was kind enough to send me her answers! So let's meet Nicole shall we...

Answer: Well. I actually have always loved nail polish - but I never got into it to this extent! I started my blog last spring as an alternative to doing YouTube videos about makeup, and it just seemed more interesting to post about my nail polishes. Before I knew it, I was posting solely about nail polish - and I had to have more, more, more!

Answer: I think I started out having maybe 10 or so polishes last spring. After cruising the nail polish blogs, and then of course the steady build up of polish, I have somewhere in the vicinity of 600 nail polishes - last official count was 528. Roughly 9 months!

Answer: I'd have to vote China Glaze as my favorite brand! They have such a variety of colors and finishes.

Answer: 5! Talk about asking a tough question. Well, at least you gave me five, and not one, or three! China Glaze Lubu Heels has always been a huge favorite of mine, so that goes on the list - and I'd also pick a hot red in Misa's Poison Kiss. I have a purple weakness, so I'd have to also have my brand new Nfu Oh # 51, a good blue would be China Glaze Blue Sparrow, and then lastly, a gorgeous gray - China Glaze Recycle. I think I could do a lot with those!

Answer: Although I love my purples, I've really started expanding my pinks and peaches, and loving them! Especially the peaches, they're a fun, juicy shade and make me long for spring.

Answer: I'm all about color. I don't really shy away from shades but definitely certain finishes I'm not fond of, such as frosty and very sheer shades.

Answer: I've always liked blogging - I've had a Live Journal forever, it seems, and before that I had websites. I grew bored with those, and then I found YouTube - I fell out of love with the whole idea of that, though. Long story! I had started a blog, thinking I'd have a place to write about products away from the video world, but I grew more interested in nail polish, and - you will probably relate to this, I think most of us will - the nail polish community is a very friendly, positive place, and I truly LOVE blogging about polish. It's fun to read other folks' blogs, and everyone is so encouraging. I think that is what motivates me the most.

As to the name - well, my "handle" for almost everything has been a form of Magic Maid in some way, for quite a while - I tried to even use that on YT but it wasn't available, so I signed up as "magicxmaid". Anyway, it was just kind of cute together, I've always liked it, so I keep using it.

Answer: I need to experiment more! I just tried to franken my own "mannequin hands" but it came out - well, not so good. I don't really have a color that works for that in my collection, but I thought for sure I could mix one up. Not so much! I've always found it hard to match my skin type anyway. Waste of polish, that was. I need to pick up some clear polish, my next experiment will be some cute jelly polishes.

Answer: Hah! I probably am, that's why I don't go get manicures. But I have to say that when I have had them "done", they shape them pretty much the way I shape them myself - I've never had a single manicurist shape my nails round or oval. About the only thing I picked up was the sugar scrub thing - and I just bought my own sugar scrubs, I use them all the time! Plus, the ones I get smell amazing.

Answer: A crystal file, for sure. I don't know how I ever, ever lived without it. And find yourself a good, cheap brush that you can dip in acetone or remover and do your cleanup with - it's really a lifesaver for us "messy gals".

Answer:Oh boy, with the tough questions, Gina! Haha! I can't pick one, can I pick two? Good. The Stand - the extended version, (Stephen King, if you don't know), and The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley. That was fiction, so non fiction? Probably the most haunting book I've read was the story of Alexandra Romanov - Last Empress by Greg King. I picked it up one day while browsing my local library's biography section, and I immediately became obsessed with the last chapter in Romanov history.
I also really LOVE historical fiction. Probably my favorite category of books.

Answer: Cooking! I love to cook. I know, that's just weird, I work in the food industry - but I do love to cook, it's so much fun.

Answer: I wear a lot of Sinful Colors, and have a lot - it's one of my favorite drugstore polishes. I think that also Color Club is a GREAT polish - it gets play from us in the polish world, but outside of that, not a lot of folks have heard of it. Also, it's only available online that I've seen, but Diamond Cosmetics polishes are made of awesome!


You can visit Nicole at and follow her on Twitter as well. Thanks so much for the great interview Niki! It was fun getting to know you!

Prim and Polished

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China Glaze: "Light as Air" (Up & Away Collection)

"Light as Air" is part of China Glaze's Up & Away collection. Transdesign describes it as periwinkle which I guess makes sense. I think it's a lilac/lavender color, very pastel, leans a bit gray. It's beautiful! My husband was not a fan of it though. I said "do you like this?" he said "ehhhhh" LOL. Colors like this are right up my alley though. Purple cremes and me are best friends. Not sure this particular shade is best for my skintone but I will rock it nonetheless because I love it too much.

The formula on this is on the thick side. I didn't find it particularly difficult to apply. I was anticipating streaks but I didn't really get any. It's pretty much opaque in one coat, this is two just to fix any minor imperfections. I love two coaters. I die a little inside when I have to do more than two coats.

How do you feel about "Light as Air"? Did you pick this up yet? Are you planning to?

P.S. sorry about the nubbins, I had two bad breaks this week.

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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Orly "Snowcone": Spring II 2010 Sweet Collection

"Snowcone" by Orly is part of the Spring II 2010 Sweet Collection. This collection will be available in April 2010. "Snowcone" is described as a "baby blue creme" which is pretty accurate. I'd call it "Cornflower Blue" if I wanted to be fancy about it. These photos were taken indoors because we had horrible rain yesterday, but they are pretty accurate color wise.

The formula on this color is thick and pigmented. It is actually opaque in just one coat but I applied two to even out my mistakes. Someone with a better application technique will absolutely be able to get away with one coat with no visible nail line.

The polishes in the sweet line come with a free mini key chain lip gloss as well. This one came with a blue frosty one. I think the flavor/scent is supposed to be blueberry snow-cone but to me this smells exactly like red Twizzlers, which is a great fun smell. As for flavor I don't get much. The color of the gloss is pretty much clear with a tenny hit of blue, but you don't have blue lips or anything LOL. Just a glossy, sparkly frost.

I think this is a nice blue for spring. I love a Robin's Egg, pastel style blue around Easter time. Will you be checking "Snowcone" out when it hits stores in April?

Disclosure: This product was furnished to me by Orly for consideration. All reviews published on this blog are at my own discretion. Please refer to my Disclosure Policy.

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Sunday, January 24, 2010

OPI "Mad As a Hatter" (Alice in Wonderland Collection)

Now if you know anything about me you'd know I am a HUGE Disney fan! Alice in Wonderland is one of my all time favorite Disney animated classics and what lacquer fanatic and Disneyphile wouldn't love a nail polish inspired by a favorite childhood film? Alright, or the Tim Burton version, still Disney! (Which by the way, I am excited for and scared of his version at the same time. HATED what he did with Wonka)

"Mad as a Hatter" is one of the four nail polishes in OPI's Alice In Wonderland Collection. OPI describes the color as "a madly marvelous black multi-glitter" which I think is fairly accurate. To be clear though, OPI makes it sound like it is a rainbow glitter in a black polish base, and it is not. It is a clear base with black and rainbow glitter, black glitter, not black polish. Does that make sense?

The black glitter in this helps to make the color pretty opaque in three coats. I'd say what I see mostly in this polish is heavy black and silver glitter with teal, red, purple and yellow glitter. The black and silver dominate but the other colors are still quite visible.

I liked this polish but I would have been more excited if it were truly a black polish base with rainbow glitter. Perhaps I need to check out NYX "Asphalt" which looks to be what I was looking for. I wore this for a day and 1/2 and it chipped a ton!!! I did go bowling with it on, but honestly it was chipped well before that. I got a nice compliment from my sister in law at dinner though. She said "Let me see your nails!!" all excited and said "that is gorgeous". I always get a kick out of nail polish compliments because besides my husband I am not sure if anyone realizes how much time and effort I actually put into lacquer LOL.

This was a NIGHTMARE to remove, as most glitters are. Oh my, tons of acetone, tons of cotton, and some glitter residue.

Of the polishes in this collection I do think this and "Absolutely Alice" are my favorites. I only purchased this one though. Did you purchase anything from the collection?

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Friday, January 22, 2010

China Glaze: Sugar High (Up & Away Collection)

China Glaze's "Sugar High" is part of the Spring 2010 Up & Away Collection. It's described as a "petal pink". I think this pink is really beautiful the name totally suits it, it's a sweet as sugar pink! It has a VERY slight melon/coral tone to it but reads in most lighting as a toned down hot pink.

The formula in this one is thick and pigmented, but not too thick that it's difficult to work with. In fact, this is one of the easier ones to work with in the collection (so far). Two coats gives you a smooth opaque finish as shown in the photos below.

This color is going to be a fantastic pedicure color for the summer. Imagine this one with bronzed beachy skin. A winner for sure.

What do you think of "Sugar High"? Love it or leave it??

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Polish Bloggers Network: Lacquer Link Love 1/22/10

Chromatic Misadventures has put together a wonderful array of swatches that include nail colors from Nails Inc., Zoya, Butter London, Essie, and so many more.

Polish Up brings you the sparkled beauty OPI Blues in the Night.

Can you appreciate a good haul? Well if so, let Black Nail Polish and Lipgloss show off the awesome goodies that she received from Lisa of Glammed Up.

The Nail Nerd has a polish sweet tooth caused by Orly's Sweet Collection.

Happy Vamp Valentines Day! The Swatchaholic shares a wonderful Konad sweet... I mean treat with all of you.

Raz from Manicure Mommas swatches her CND survey goodies and gives you an up close and personal preview.

Are you quite unfond of the scent of polish remover and feel you could live without the smell?! Well if so, Polish Galore gives a wonderful review of the lavendar scented polish removers Seche Erase & Zoya Remove.

Kellie from "Also Known As" dazzles us with the gorgeous new shades of OPI's Designer Series featuring polishes infused with diamond dust.

Probably one of the most popular colors in the China Glaze Up & Away Collection, Prim and Polished brings you gorgeous swatches of Four Leaf Clover.

Naive Nails gives us a little Absolutely Alice from OPI's Alice in Wonderland

Green is the hottest color of the season... and polishSWATCHES brings you a shade you'll adore.

and now for the goodies....

Bring on the Network Giveaways!!!

How would you like to add 3 bottles of China Glaze polish to your collection? Well, let Polish Galore show you how!

You'll definitely want to be sure and check out the Nail Nerd Giveaway... she's giving away some gorgeous Viva la Diva Nail Lacquers.

Black Nail Polish and Lipgloss is having a fun and creative contest that you just have to see for yourself. I just can't spill the beans on this one!

And lastly, have you been dying to get your hands on polishes from the China Glaze Up & Away Collection?! Well, if your answer is yes... check out the Polish Freak and she'll be glad to give some to you.

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Thursday, January 21, 2010

China Glaze: Re-Fresh Mint (Up & Away Collection)

China Glaze's "Re-Fresh Mint" is another polish from the new Up & Away collection. Mint green is a popular color among nail polish fanatics and on the runways so this color is right on time.

Mint green is my favorite color. My wedding colors were mint and chocolate brown. I haven't purchased a mint polish before this one because the swatches I'd seen online always leaned a bit too blue, or a bit too lime. I was excited to see this one on the previews because it seemed to be that perfect "mint" color and I have to say it certainly didn't disappoint.

The formula on this one is thick and highly pigmented. I think it was a little difficult to apply streak free but it was not a disaster by any means. I think you can see in the photo, just two coats to an opaque and smooth finish.

The color, like I said, is the quintessential mint green, which I love, but I am not sure I love it on my nails... there, I said it, BAD polish blogger! I know, I know, it's IN right now but I am not sure it suits my skin tone. I doubt you can tell from the photos of my hands but I have a very slight olive undertone and I feel like the green pulls that out and sort of makes me look "dead". Will I wear this again, of course!! Is it my favorite color to rock? Sadly, no. I thought I would LOVE this, but to me it's just okay. It's just my skintone though, the formula is good and the color is probably the truest real pastel mint I have seen out, I just don't know how I feel about the color on me.

If you're loving the mint green trend I say RUN, don't walk, RUN to get this one. It's a true mint, not very blue, not lime, but mint. You won't regret the purchase.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Adventures in Konading IV: Four Leaf Clover & For Audrey M63 Plate

It's official. I HATE Konad. It's horrible to work with, never comes out right and take so much time. I HATE it. HATE HATE. I envy those of you with the ability to create flawless Konadicures but I am not one of you.

Today I tried China Glaze's "For Audrey" for my stamping polish. Before you tell me the reason I hate Konad is because I don't use their special polishes I assure you I have tried numerous times to use their special polishes with horrible results. To be honest, these came out better than those. I used plate M63 to stamp the design and as polishes go I think "For Audrey" worked pretty well. My bottle is a bit thick though as I have had it a long time, so perhaps that helped.

I topped the design with Matte Magic, which is wonderful.

I thought I'd share this photo with you. I took the polish off minutes after photographing. Even though this hand looks decent the other hand was a disaster. I seriously give up on this stupid stamping system and I am sick about wasting my money on it. Off to paint my nails...

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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

China Glaze: Four Leaf Clover (Up & Away Collection)

"Four Leaf Clover" by China Glaze is part of the new Up & Away Collection which launched this month. Like I have mentioned before I was super excited about this collection because I LOVE cremes and I love the color palette of this collection (soft pastels and a few brights). I ended up purchasing the entire collection, which is something I have never done before, but I couldn't resist. I almost skipped this color. I wasn't sure how I felt about a "kelly green" but I am so so happy I didn't skip this as it's actually one of my favorites from the collection.

This is a beautiful bright creme green. It borders on neon but is not quite as bright as a neon. The photos here are two coats which was perfect opacity. The formula is wonderful, I love China Glaze polishes. I love the normal sized brush (compared to the nightmare OPI brush) and I find the application to be easy and neat. Note, much less pooling around the cuticle. I think this polish is a true winner so if you think you'd like the color I say go pick this up.

(As always click on photos to enlarge. Please see below for comparison of "Four Leaf Clover" and "Turned up Turquoise").

Comparison: "Turned up Turquoise" & "Four Leaf Clover

Now I mentioned to Nicole yesterday on Twitter that "Four Leaf Clover" is like the creme version of "Turned Up Turquoise" so I thought I'd show you them side by side. In hindsight I should I have done a nail on nail comparison but I was lazy. You cannot see the differences very clearly in the photos below but what you can see is the similarities.

"Turned Up Turquoise" is a neon, which means it's super bright and highly pigmented. What you cannot see in the comparison photos is that "Turned up Turquoise" has a slight shimmer to it. I am not sure how to describe it but it's got some fine shimmer particles which are the same color as the polish, hence why you cannot see it in the pictures. I hope that makes sense.

"Four Leaf Clover" is a true creme. There is no shimmer in it whatsoever. It's a smooth green color.

Do you need both? I'd say yes. They are NOT dupes. They are the same "color" but they are not the same finish at all. One is a high gloss creme the other is a shimmery neon. I know the photos look similar but I assure you there is a HUGE difference in these colors.

What do you think of "Four Leaf Clover"?

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