July 26, 2019

My Picks from OPI Tokyo Spring/Summer 2019

*Purchased by me*

Happy Friday everyone! I've had these OPI Tokyo shades for ages, not sure why it took me so long to post them, but better late than never, right? I figured I should get the post up before I get the Scotland shades! Let's start off with OPI I'm On a Sushi Roll is a great slightly dusty teal creme. It leans more green than blue. Fantastic color for spring and summer, I've worn it several times already.

This was three thin coats. If you tend towards thicker coats, two should be fine. Nice consistency and the formula was easy to control for precise application.

OPI Samurai Breaks a Nail is a vibrant, glowing purple packed with blue shimmer. The shade just pops beautifully. It's such a rich jewel-toned purple and then you get that flash of blue. Just gorgeous!

This was three thin coats and I did think I needed the full three coats. Two coats still had some VNL at the tips. You also want to make sure your coats are all the same thickness on each nail, it can make the color look very different if one nail had a thin third coat vs. a thicker third coat.

OPI How Does Your Zen Garden Grow? is a bright whitened lime creme. It's a fun shade for summer, it has that white base that really pops against tan skin (LOL not mine obviously). This is one of those colors that really catches your eye and stands out of the crowd. 

This as three thin coats as well and I was pleasantly surprised by the application. Sometimes these chalkier shades can be streaky and uneven looking, but this came out nice and smooth. Application was easy and it was very opaque in three coats.

OPI Suzi-san Climbs Fuji-san is a blue-based teal creme. Looking at the bottles of this and I'm On a Sushi Roll, I wondered why these two would be in a collection together. Once they are on the nails, they are very different polishes and I am happy to have them both. Suzi-san is much more blue and just screams summer pedi to me. I've worn it a bunch of times already and it makes me happy every time!

This was just two coats. Nicely opaque and good formula.

OPI Chopstix and Stones... 😍😍😍 I'm in love. The first polish that got me really in love with OPI was Russian Navy from the Russia collection 2007. So I have a major soft spot with dark blue OPI polishes and Chopstix and Stones may have just jumped to the #1 dark blue love of my life. This is a deep, rich ultramarine blue packed with glowing shimmer. I don't think swatches do it justice, I have yet to see one that really captures the depth of this polish. LOVE!

This is three coats. I think three coats are a must here. It looks good and opaque with two coats, but the third really brings out the shimmer to it's full potential. Definitely use a nice shiny top coat to further accent the glow.

Overall, I think Tokyo was my favorite OPI collection in quite a long time. I definitely purchased more polishes than any collection in ages, and I plan to pick up one or two more (Tempura-ture is Rising is calling my name). I was happy to see blues, greens, and pretty purples instead of a sea of red and pinks. What are you loving from this collection?

May 19, 2019

Maple Holistics Silk18 Conditioner Review!

*Sent for review*

I'm excited to introduce you all today to a new to me brand, Maple Holistics, and their fabulous Silk18 Conditioner. I have been using this conditioner for over a month now and am really loving it. I took the picture above after using it for all that time, so you can see this will be a long-lasting product. Let me start off by being honest about my current hair situation. I haven't had it cut since January and it is a wild and unruly mane right now. I am WAY overdue for a cut, but have been feeling very uninspired in the hair department. Despite all of this, I have received several compliments on my hair in the last few weeks and I suspect I have Maple Holistics to thank for that!

When Maple Holistics first contacted me to see if I'd like to try this conditioner, I visited their website and was pleased to find that they are PETA-certified cruelty-free. All of their hair products are sulfate and paraben free, and the Silk18 Conditioner is silicone-free too! This was great news for me, as my skin is very sensitive to silicones of any kind and I try to avoid them at all costs. Maple Holistics says the Silk18 Conditioner contains a blend of eighteen silk amino acids that "are enhanced with a nourishing blend of argan oil, shea butter, organic pomegranate, and jojoba oil which deliver nutrients to promote softer, smoother, more lustrous looking tresses". I have definitely noticed shinier hair in the weeks since I started using this conditioner and I normally would not describe my hair as shiny.

Aside from my hair feeling softer and looking shinier, this conditioner smells AMAZING!! The soft, natural vanilla scent is incredible and makes me want to eat it! I don't notice a lot of the scent lingering on my hair all day, but that's fine with me as I prefer to not have a strongly scented hair product. Here's a pic of the wild, yet shiny, mane in the wind yesterday 😂. Now I'm off to make a hair appointment so I can see how great my hair looks when it's been cut and I use this conditioner!

Maple Holistics Silk18 Conditioner is available here through their website and is actually sold by Amazon. Maple Holistics also has a great blog on their website with useful beauty tips and info, including this article on damaged hair. I spent awhile perusing the blog and came away with some good info. I have several other products I plan on ordering from Maple Holistics, so stay tuned for more reviews!

May 11, 2019

Zoya Innocence Collection Spring 2019 Swatches!

*Sent for review*

Happy spring! I have the Zoya Innocence Spring 2019 collection today and it's a great mix of soft neutrals and pops of bold colors. First up is Zoya Birch, a gorgeous soft grayed-out lavender creme.  This is a a perfect neutral for spring, soft, but still a little edgy looking thanks to the lavender tones. 

This is two easy coats. Birch was very pigmented, if you do thicker coats, it may be nearly opaque in one coat. I like to do thinner coats to prevent chipping. Really great coverage and effortless application.

Zoya Theo is an interesting dark gray slightly textured polish with silver flakes and black/dark blue glitters (Zoya says they are dark blue, but they are so dark they look black to me). Zoya says this is like "a spring thunderstorm in the night", love it. If you're not a fan of texture polish, this really isn't one. It feels mostly smooth and doesn't eat topcoat like a regular textured polish. But you can kind of see the texture, even under the shiny topcoat.

This was three thin coats of Theo. I had a little sheerness at the tips with two coats, so I added the third. It was easy to apply and only needed one layer of topcoat.

Zoya Agnes is a warm neutral pink creme. It's right about halfway between beige and pink, depending on lighting and skin tone it may lean more one way than the other.

This is two coats. Like Birch, Agnes is very pigmented and has fantastic full coverage. It was also easy to apply and streak-free.

Zoya Fern is a really interesting color and perfect for spring. If you've ever wanted a neutral green, here it is! Fern is a mixture of green and gray, with a hint of blue, with pearly gold shimmer. The shimmer is a little more obvious in the bottle than on the nail, but it still adds a nice element to the polish. Very unique and beautiful color!

Happily, this is also two easy coats. Fern was lovely to apply and had a great consistency, I didn't even need to do any clean up on this one.

Here's one of the two pops of color in the Innocence collection. Zoya Evette is a saturated grape creme with a hint of pink undertone. It's not too bright or too dark, just a nice bold purple. I think the slight pink undertone makes this one different from other purples in my collection.

Two coats again here. Evette is nicely opaque, great coverage. I did manage to flood my cuticles twice so don't load too much polish on the brush with this one.

I saved my favorite of the collection for last! Zoya Aire is a deepened periwinkle blue creme. This shade of blue is just absolutely perfect. It has the elements of a periwinkle, but in a bold dark color. This is the first polish I wore in the collection and I will be wearing it many more times this spring and summer!

I'm always happy when my favorite shade in the collection also performs well and Aire meets that challenge! Two effortless coats, fully pigmented, and no troubles applying. Love it!!

My top two in this collection are Aire and Fern, but honestly you can't go wrong with any of these polishes. The two neutrals have fabulous formulas, so those are a great pick if you are a neutral fan or just need to add some to your collection. Theo is such a unique polish and Evette is a stunning color. Well done Zoya!!

The Zoya Innocence Spring collection is available now on zoya.com.

February 1, 2019

Zoya Jubilee Holiday 2018 Swatches

*Sent for review*

I am so late with these swatches, but the good news is that this collection is filled with polishes that are perfect for year round wear. Forget your usual holiday collection with 6 red cremes, 5 red shimmers, and a green, this is a modern holiday filled with sparkle and unexpected pops of color. I'm going to start this post off with Zoya Astrid, a flashy gold foil. This is a great true gold polish and I love the finish. It almost looks like it's made up of real gold flakes. Astrid is a real eye-catching polish for sure and probably the most typical "holiday" shade in the group.

This is three thin coats. You could probably do two thicker coats, but I felt the tips of my nails needed a bit more coverage after two coats. It was easy to apply and very smooth to the touch, not chunky at all. I used one layer of quick dry top coat on all swatches in this post.

Zoya Leigh is a nice warm-toned pale beige creme. It's a flattering mix of yellow and peach tones in a buff colored base. Very work appropriate, and sort of cozy looking for winter.

This was two easy coats. I found most of the cremes in this collection to be opaque in two coats and very nice to apply.

Zoya Carson is described as a "muted nude pink creme". This is a mix of pink and brown and it's the kind of color that is never flattering on me. I have a feeling if you have a darker or even much lighter skin tone than I do, this would look amazing!

This was three coats. I felt the formula was a little thinner and I needed the extra coat.

😍 Zoya Taryn is my favorite from this collection! Taryn is described as a "fiery fuchsia micro-iridescent shimmer with blue undertones". It is absolutely glowing and so gorgeous! The blue flashes are very strong and the shimmer is so smooth looking, like pink lava. I am not a big pink polish fan, but I'm in love with this one! If you only order one polish from this collection, make it Taryn.

In addition to being gorgeous, Taryn is easy to apply and only needs two coats to be opaque!

I really enjoy this holiday collection because a lot of the colors are unexpected for the holidays (i.e. not all red and green), yet perfectly party ready. This also makes the collection more versatile for the rest of the year. I will be wearing Zoya Maxine now, in the spring, and of course in the summer. Maxine is a juicy coral pink toned red. It's bright and warm and everything that January is not, so I love it. This watermelon red is going to live on my toes until it is warm enough for people to actually see my toes.

Two effortless coats and just all around excellent formula!

Zoya Allison is described as a "plum-toned ruby cream". It is a pretty good mix of plum and red/pink tones. It's very flattering on my skin tone and I think it would look great on a wide variety of skin colors. It brings some warmth, but it also has a little cool plum. Again, this shade is perfect year round, not just for the holidays.

This is two coats, but I did have a little bit of transparency at the tips. If you want full opacity, I'd go with three, but I didn't mind the little bit of VNL with this glossy shade.

COOOKIE *in cookie monster voice* Zoya Cookie is a stunning amethyst PixieDust with plenty of gold flecks. This is a party on your nails for sure. I love Zoya PixieDust polishes and this one is up there with my favorites. I was really happy to see Zoya include two PixieDusts in this holiday collection and even happier when they turned out to be gorgeous! 

This is two coats of Cookie. I always find PixieDusts to be easy to apply very quickly and this is no exception.

Zoya Chiara is a nice deep blue-toned purple creme. It's a great jewel-toned purple and I like the depth of the color for the winter months. Maybe not the most unique shade in the collection, but it's beautiful!

Chiara also has a great formula, so if you need to add a deep purple to your collection, this is a winner. Two easy coats for full opacity.

Be still my green-loving heart 😍. Zoya Danica is a moody dark peacock green creme. It's the perfect deep green with blue undertones that Zoya describes as a "new twist on a holiday green". I love this for the holidays, but I will also love it in the fall and winter months too. It will make a lovely base for nail art of any kind. Gorgeous!

Two coats to greatness! Isn't it just perfect looking?

Zoya Kateri is a vampy dark brown creme. It can look almost black in low lighting, but has a little more warmth to it. Yummy dark chocolate!

This was also two coats and applied well. It was a bit thinner consistency, so just don't load up the brush too much or it will run towards your cuticles.

Zoya Juniper is a sparkly dark rainforest green PixieDust. Zoya calls it teal, but I think it leans more on the green side, with definite blue undertones. If you're a fan of the PixieDust formula, you will want this one for sure, it's stunning. I don't think I really let it dry down enough before these pictures. When it's completely dry, it's much more sparkly.

This is two coats and the application was easy. I think it took a bit longer to dry fully than other PixieDusts, just worth noting.

Last but not least, this is the new Zoya Leopard Spots Topper. This is a fun addition to the Zoya range and creates an interesting look with many of the polishes in this collection. Zoya suggest trying it over Juniper, the deep green PixieDust. I tried that combination, but found Juniper to be so dark that it didn't really make the Leopard Spots pop. So I tried it over Maxine instead and LOVED it! 

The key to the Leopard Spot Topper is to apply a really thin coat. On my middle nail here, I accidentally put on a slightly thicker coat and you can see it doesn't look as good as the other nails. Make sure you wipe that brush off a couple of times before applying. You can wear this alone for a matte spotted look like I did or layer on glossy top coat for a shiny leopard finish,

Overall, I love this collection for any time of the year, not just the holidays. There are great picks in here for the holidays, of course, but it's not exclusively a holiday look. My favorites are Taryn, Maxine, Cookie, and Danica. I've already worn a couple of those as full manis and have really enjoyed wearing them. Great job Zoya!

The Zoya Jubilee collection is available now at zoya.com.