Archive for Sephora

St. John’s Wood by nails inc.

Posted in Original Posts Archive with tags , , , , on November 14, 2011 by clairesayswhat

It was my birthday recently, and my cousin Carolyn surprised me with the perfect present–a giftcard to Sephora, of course! And it was perfect timing, too, because those little Sephora fairies kindly sent me an e-mail informing me that a $25 online purchase would entitle me to a deluxe sample bag. Woohoo!

So I perused the website for a little while but, needless to say, I spent the giftcard on polish. All the better to blog about! I chose 3 colors by the British brand, nails inc., which recently launched stateside at Sephora. This is St. John’s Wood:

Image by clairesayswhat

(Pardon the not-so-fantastic photo, please. I was having a tough time getting the lighting right on that day for some reason, hence the slightly naff flower border to distract you!)

As I was scrolling through the nails inc. colors, St. John’s Wood immediately got my attention because it’s such a unique shade of blue. Now, I’m not a blue polish person at all, but I decided to try this shade since it’s so pretty and unique to my collection.

The color also reminds me of one of my favorite Britcoms, Keeping Up Appearances, and its main character, Hyacinth Bucket (“It’s boo-kay, dear”), and her infamous collection of Royal Daulton china with the hand-painted periwinkles. Indeed, after checking back at the Sephora website, St. John’s Wood is described as “dark periwinkle” so I must’ve chosen it subconsciously! I’m well chuffed (as the Brits would say) with it, too. The cool gray undertones of this blue, as opposed to darker shades, work nicely with my skin tone.

St. John’s Wood is a highly pigmented creme polish, and you could get away with 1 coat if you are very careful in applying it and have a light touch with the brush to prevent dragging. I went with 2 coats, of course. You don’t get very much polish in the bottle, but the fact that it’s so highly pigmented mostly makes up for that. Also, the silver cap is all there is, meaning it does not come off to reveal a smaller, black cap underneath (like the magnetic polish cap). I thought this would be an issue, but it surprisingly wasn’t. I’ve been wearing this shade for going on 3 days, too, and there is absolutely no tip wear or chipping. Overall, the formula of St. John’s Wood is spot on.

I really like the nails inc. brand. All of their polishes have fun, British-centric and Anglophile names, and most of the colors are unique compared to everything else on the market. I was also very impressed with the quality of their polish. At $9.50 a bottle and with less product inside than other brands at similar price points, you definitely want to get your money’s worth and nails inc. does not disappoint so far. I can’t wait to try the other two colors I ordered and review them for you all! Stay tuned!

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Magnetic Polish Is Here!

Posted in Original Posts Archive with tags , , , on October 16, 2011 by clairesayswhat

Magnetic nail polish is one of the hottest new trends, and it’s been making the rounds on all the nail polish blogs for the past few months. I’ve been intrigued from the start, of course, but most of the brands available were either foreign or quite expensive. One of the few US brands to make it, LCN, also required you to buy a separate magnet to complete the effect. And at $9.90 for the polish and a whopping $19.90 for the magnet, I decided it was  a trend I could wait on. Plus, I just wasn’t excited by any of their colors.

But then along came the British brand, nails inc., with their new Sephora line which includes 2 shades of Magnetic Polish priced at $16 each and I was sold!

Image by clairesayswhat

Not that $16 is that far away from the LCN price but the difference is kind of an issue of principle for me. You see, the nails inc. polish includes the magnet on the top of the cap! And this cap comes off to reveal the brush lid (much like the Butter polishes). The magnet even has a curved, raised edge as part of the cap to help you position and hold the magnet correctly over your nail. Genius!

So there are two shades so far, Trafalgar Square (silver) and Houses of Parliament (purple). I chose the latter. I painted two coats of Houses of Parliament and did the magnetize effect with the second coat. The polish is kind of thick and not very forgiving, so don’t be afraid to glop it on there. Plus, you want the polish to be fairly thick in order to get the full effect of the magnetized design. I had to add a third coat to some nails because the polish also dries fairly quick. You want to be swift with that magnet! I only smudged one nail with the magnet, too, which I think is pretty good. If you don’t paint your nails regularly, you might experience a bit of a learning curve with magnetic polish. But it’s definitely less so than with something like the Konad stamper. If you don’t get enough an effect with the magnet the first time, just slop on another coat and try again!

The saleslady at Sephora showed me how you can use the magnet in different ways to create different designs, but I decided to just hold it straight above my nail. The effect is a sort of wavy design. I really like it! It’s not something I’ll wear all the time, and I’ll probably hold off on buying any more magnetic polishes until there are some better colors, but it’s fun!