Archive - Nails

Cleanse, Prime and Shine Your Claws With Sephora’s Formula X “The System”

Published in: Nails, Product Reviews, Sephora

Sephora Formula X The System

Sephora Formula X The System

I usually lack the wherewithal for multi-step manis involving a base and top coat when I’m painting my paws (read: I’m too lazy, yo), even though my rational mind fully recognizes the prudence of taking the extra time to extend the life of my polish.

But ever since I started using Sephora’s Formula X “The System” $32 nail kit, I don’t mind going the extra mile at all.

Sephora Formula X the System Nail Cleanser

Nail Cleanser

This is partly due to thinking that the bottles in the kit look kind of sci-fi and cool, like they belong in an Apple store beside the latest iMacs, and also because they just plain work.

Sephora Formula X The System Base Coat

Base Coat

The kit gets high marks from reviewers on sephora.com, and I can see why. I used the Nail Cleanser (a brush-on liquid that helps remove residue from your nails so the products you layer on top bind better), Base Coat and Top Coat with Tom Ford’s Viper Nail Lacquer this week, and my nails have definitely handled the hell I regularly put them through better.

Sephora Formula X The System Top Coat

Top Coat

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Unsung Makeup Heroes: Tom Ford Nail Lacquer in Viper

Published in: Nails, Tom Ford Beauty, Unsung Heroes

Tom Ford Viper Nail Lacquer

Two coatsssss of Tom Ford Nail Lacquer in Viper ($32), writhing and hissing now at Tom Ford counters and online

Tom Ford Nail Lacquer in ViperNot even seasoned snake charmers could tame Tom Ford’s Nail Lacquer in Viper ($32).

OK, so I’ve been on a personal quest, Indiana Jones-style, to find the Tom Ford Nail Lacquer that shouts the loudest to my soul. Before I started, I estimated that this would take approximately forever, or roughly three months, whichever came first, but then I got bit by Viper, which may have ended my personal beauty mission forthright…

Tom Ford Viper Nail Lacquer

Halp! I’ve been bitten by Viper!

Why?

Well, this creamy blackened purplish berry stalks Tom’s permanent line like a cobra stalks a mouse in a field… It’s dangerous! — and if you drop your guard for a second, you’ll be hypnotized.

Equally at home on a bad@ss gal’s nails in a bar fight (a gal who artfully escapes the melee on her Harley without anyone noticing), or a lady in box seats at the opera, or a girl wearing pleather leggings and black Chucks. It’s elegant, tough and edgy — and surprisingly approachable — all at the same time.

The long-running Unsung Heroes series features some of my favorite permanent collection products from a variety of bodacious beauty brands.

It’s also dynamic. When I tilt my fingers juuust right, I see a shiny, vibrant purple, like wet grapes on a vine. A second later, it’s deeper, like a bowl of ripe blackberries about to be devoured by greedy, hungry mouths…

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Magical Pixies Promise Sparkling Nails This Spring Thanks to the Zoya Magical Pixie Collection

Published in: Nails, Zoya

Zoya Magical Pixie Spring 2014 collection

The new three-piece Zoya Magical Pixie Spring 2014 collection

The new PixieDust polishes in Zoya’s Magical Pixie collection sparkle like Ryan Gosling’s pearly whites on the red carpet, *zing!*

Hexagonal flecks of iridescent goodness combine with finer flecks of shimmer to create a dazzling effect more powerful than the gravitational pull of J. Lo’s butt.

You have no choice but to stare…

Ain’t no party like a glitter party, so of course I had to go there. :) And this glitter does not mess around.

I think Zoya’s regular PixieDust formula is pretty flashy on its own, but the addition of extra hex pieces here takes it to the next level. Totally worthy of a bacchanalian bachelorette par-taaaaay in Vegas, or perhaps a cat fight on Real Housewives of Atlanta.

Rosy Lux, silver Cosmo and blue Vega are all full coverage, and Zoya recommends 2-3 coats on clean nails (no base coat needed), although, I bet if you could get away with a single layer if you were in a hurry.

For each of these swatches below, I used two… Force of habit, ya know?

Zoya Vega

Vega, a cool-toned shimmery textured blue (two coats)

I love the way cool-toned blue Vega, my favorite of the bunch, shimmers… It takes me back to when El Hub and I had just started dating.

We’d visit his family in Hawaii over the holidays, and I’d wake up early in the mornings to sneak in a pre-dawn surf session. Vega glimmers just like those teal blue waters sparkled as the sun came up.

Zoya Lux

Lux, a cool-toned textured glittery pink (two coats)

Can you see the purple pieces of glitter in cool-toned pink Lux (my second favorite one)? I think they give it a dainty, feminine touch.

Zoya Cosmo

Cosmo, a glittery textured silver (two coats)

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The OPI Brazil Beach Sandies Mini Kit Says Bye-Bye to Boring With Four Vivid Textured Polishes

Published in: Collections, Nails, OPI

The new four-piece OPI Brazil Beach Sandies Mini Kit

The new four-piece OPI Brazil Beach Sandies Mini Kit, $12.95

Very clever, OPI. Very clever. :)

The part of me that lives to over-think the symbolic significance of everything loves the juxtaposition of gritty sand, neutrals and bright pigments in the OPI Brazil collection.

On one end, there are the sandy-colored neutral polishes in the overarching 12-piece OPI Brazil collection, which all have a smooth, creamy finish.

On the other, there are the four vivacious mini polishes here in the accompanying Brazil Beach Sandies Kit ($12.95), all of which have OPI’s pebbled, textured Liquid Sand finish in bright, eye-catching shades, also known as psychedelic party sand for your paws.

Even if you aren’t a big fan of textured polishes, I think these vivid shades are still worth a try if you like playful, cheerful colors. They’re seriously smile-inducing, and the names — You’re So Flippy Floppy, What’s a Little Rain Forest, Samba-dy Loves Purple and I’m Brazil Nuts Over You — are catchy, too.

In each of the swatches below, I’m wearing two coats…

OPI You're So Flippy Floppy

You’re So Flippy Floppy

OPI What's A Little Rain Forest

What’s A Little Rain Forest


OPI Samba-dy Loves Purple

Samba-dy Loves Purple

OPI I'm Brazil Nuts Over You

I’m Brazil Nuts Over You

OPI Brazil Beach Sandies Mini Kit

The front of the box

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It’s a Carnival of Color as Vivid Brights Samba on Tips and Toes in OPI’s New Brazil Collection

Published in: Collections, Nails, OPI

The OPI Brazil collection

Next time I enjoy a plate of feijoada while beautiful women in colorful bejeweled thongs and feathered headdresses dance around my table, you better believe I’ll be wearing one or two (or 12!) of the shades in OPI’s new Brazil collection on my nails!

The OPI Brazil collection, available now

The OPI Brazil collection, available now

Where am I going with this?

One word: Brazil (by way of San Francisco).

One of my favorite places to eat in the city is a Brazilian restaurant called Canto do Brazil, and dining there is a total experience. First, the food — beyond yummy, and not overpriced (the plantains, beans and rice, OMG!).

But that’s not all. There’s also the show. :) While you eat, gorgeous Brazilian showgirls in Carnival regalia dance around the tables and try to coax diners to dance with them.

Last time I was there, I was too focused on the mountain of carb-tacular goodness in front of me to shake my groove thang, but next time, it’s ON! Because I’ll have an extra reason — the beautiful brights in OPI’s new 12-piece collection ($9 each), which I love, love, LOVE.

OK, sure, I think the neutrals in the collection are pretty, too. I mean, I appreciate elegant neutral nails as much as the next girl, especially when worn with a bright lipstick, and I think the muted pewter, taupe, mocha, nude and chocolate shades here play off bolder colors nicely.

But the brights! Oh, the brights… Inspired by rainforest flowers, the creamy yellow, coral, orange, pink, red and deep jungle green, are just so blasted rich and vivid that you may feel the urge to hop on a flight to Rio right meow. :)

OPI I Just Can't Cope-Acabana, a creamy sunshine yellow

Just Can’t Cope-Acabana, a creamy sunshine yellow

OPI AmazON...AmazOFF, a creamy deep jungle green

AmazON…AmazOFF, a creamy deep jungle green

OPI Where Did Suzi's Man-Go?, a creamy mango orange

Where Did Suzi’s Man-Go?, a creamy mango orange

OPI Kiss Me I'm Brazilian, a creamy warm pink

Kiss Me I’m Brazilian, a creamy warm pink

OPI Toucan Do It If You Try, a creamy confidant orange

Toucan Do It If You Try, a creamy confidant orange

OPI Live.Love.Carnaval, a vibrant coral

Live.Love.Carnaval, a vibrant coral

OPI Red Hot Rio, a ruby red

Red Hot Rio, a ruby red

OPI Scores a Goal, a creamy rich chocolate

OPI Scores a Goal, a creamy rich chocolate

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