Sunday, 27 March 2016

Essie 'Midnight Cami' Blue Swatch, Review and Comparison

My 'Midnight Cami' came in a twin box, along with Jazzy Jubilant, and I absolutely love it! I have the wide European style brush, and it goes on beautifully! Introduced in the Fall 2009 Cuddle with Color collection (along with other favourites like Chinchilly and Angora Cardi), it's described as a shimmering, deep twilight blue.
Although it's nearer the dark end of the Essie blues spectrum, when the light hits it, you can really see the blue come through, as well as a subtle but gorgeous shimmer.
I like the formula - not too thick (though apply carefully to avoid seeping into the cuticle) and it levels reasonable well. I used an undercoat (and had only very minor staining issues), two coats of Midnight Cami. and a top coat of Seche Vite.

I don't have any dupes of Midnight Cami, but here it is with some of my other Essie Blues. After School Boy Blazer is more of a black/blue, Style Cartel is a shade lighter, Mezmerised and Hide & Go Chic are significantly lighter, and while Bell-Bottom Blues has the same tonal value and shimmer as Midnight Cami, BBB is much greener.

I seem to have worn a lot of blues and grey/greens lately, so while I was taking swatch photos of them, I took some 'just for fun' photos too!

 My Essie polishes are currently stored in a couple of 'Really Useful Box' A4 boxes, which are the perfect depth.

And finally, this is how I keep track of my polishes. I got as close to my nail bed coloured card stock as possible, and stapled a piece of clear acetate over the top. I swatched all the polishes on the actetate and wrote the names on the cardstock underneath. If I want to audition any polishes, I can put my nail under the acetate, and get a rough idea of what the polish will look like. It's great being able to see everything in one place! I keep the polishes in the same order in their boxes, as they are on this sheet, so they are easier to find.

Saturday, 5 March 2016

Essie 'Eternal Optimist' Swatch, Review and Comparison

I bought a twin pack of Essie polishes called 'Bridal Bliss' which included Eternal Optimist and Allure. Eternal Optimist is a mid dusky pink, with a hint of peach, and was bought out by Essie in their Spring 2009 collection. Essie describe it as a spiced tea rose with a dash of cream.
I don't think the colour is particularly flattering on me, but it is quite pretty and neutral for when you need something not too in-your-face, with a bit more colour than a nude.

The photo below is taken indoors in natural light. It's not a great photo, but the colour is quite true to life.
The application of Eternal Optimist is good - it's moderately well pigmented, and covered nicely in two coats. It has a lovely cream finish. My bottle has the wide Essie brush, which I prefer.
I used Orly Bonder undercoat, two coats of Eternal Optimist, and Seche Vite Top Coat.

 This photo comes up a bit pink - Eternal Optimist is slightly more peach coloured in real life.

 I don't have any other polishes very similar to Eternal Optimist, but here are some of the closest: In Stitches, Stones n Roses, Spin the Bottle, Lady Like and Island Hopping.
(Incidentally, yes - the little bottle in the group below does drive me nuts, but I ordered a box set thinking they were full sized, and alas they were not!!)

Swatches of the above shades:

Eternal Optimist from further away, so you can get a more general impression of it.

Saturday, 27 February 2016

Essie 'It's Genius' Swatch, Review and Comparison

It's Genius is described by Essie as a violet quartz shimmer with beige undertones, and was introduced in the Winter 2008 Collection. I'd describe it as a deep purple-berry, with a very fine golden shimmer. Purples are among my least favourite nail colours, but I found It's Genius on Ebay last week for just over £3.00 including postage, so thought I'd give it a go. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I liked it - probably because it leans to a dark pinky berry.

The photo below is taken in natural light, indoors.
I used a base coat of Orly Bonder, two thick coats of It's Genius, and a top coat of Seche Vite.
The consistency is a little on the thin side - it isn't that strongly pigmented, and it ran into my cuticles a bit (I might have been better off with three thin coats), but saying that, it wasn't too bad to work with, and leveled quite nicely.

A selection of my closest purple/pink/berry Essie shades: Warm & Toasty Turtleneck, Play Date, Sexy Divide, It's Genius, Flowerista, Big Spender and Bahama Mama.

And again in different lighting:

Swatches of the above shades:

When I was busying choosing which Essie polishes to buy and using Pinterest for reference, one of the things which I wanted to see more of were pictures of the polish from a distance. I wanted to get more of a general impression of what the colour looked like being worn, rather than just close up hand shots, so here is It's Genius at a distance.

Those chunky glass bottles are irresistible!