Sunday, 9 November 2014

Crown of Thistles by AEngland

Hello ladies! Today I have a gorgeous polish to share with you from the brand new A England "Elizabeth + Mary" collection.  A new A England collection is something to get very excited about, and this one is no exception.  Taking inspiration from two of Britain's most famous Queens - Elizabeth the 1st, and Mary Queen of Scots. The history of these two women is steeped in murder, betrayal and intrigue.  Mary was considered by many to be the rightful heir to the English throne, and Elizabeth in turn kept her cousin imprisoned for 18 years before finally having her beheaded for treason. 
A England - Crown of Thistles - artificial light
A England - Crown of Thistles - artificial light
Today's polish is 'Crown of Thistles', a shade inspired by Mary, the Queen of Scotland, whose national emblem is the thistle.  This is a beautiful shade of Orchid (pinky purple) that really captures the colour of the tufted top of the thistle:

Crown of Thistles is also a very strong holo finish, far more prominent than the usual soft dusty holo finish that A England are famous for.  Seen here in the bottle shot you can see the polish comes alive with a rainbow of colour from that dense holo finish.

A England - Crown of Thistles - artificial light

Crown of Thistles was a lovely polish to wear, and for someone that owns a lot of pink and purple shades this one also has managed to be unique in my collection which is quite some feat.  I'm in awe of Adina at A England and her creative polishes.  Each one is truly a piece of art in a bottle.  Application is butter smooth, glossy and flawless.  Pictured here I'm wearing a couple of coats with NE base and Essie GTG, although this polish is easily a one-coater.

A England - Crown of Thistles - artificial light
A England - Crown of Thistles - artificial light
I love this shade, and I'm looking forward to getting more from this collection.  I particularly fancy Fotheringay and Virgin Queen, so expect to see those at some point in future! In the meantime, UK customers can head over to A England where I picked up my bottle of Crown of Thistles for £9.  They are also currently having a special offer for November on the Gothic collection, with individual shades for £6 or bundled for even less.  With free P&P on all orders it's a bargain for polish of this pedigree.

Friday, 7 November 2014

Spotted : Barry M Glitteratti !

Barry M Glitteratti polishes have arrived! What's even better is that they are currently 3 for 2 in Boots :-) well it seemed rude not too...these look perfect for the party season but I'll definitely be breaking out the peel off base coat for these!

Have you tried any of these yet? What's your favorite? In the bottle I'm loving the purple Fashion Icon. Can't wait to try these out!

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

A England Promotion! Gothic November, on now...

Hello ladies! Just a quick post to let you know that A England are having another of their legendary promotions with shades for just £6, and special bundles for even lower than that! With free UK P&P it's s steal. 

This promotion is called Gothic November and contains all the Gothic collection shades.  Go to for details.

I have one of the Gothic collection polish - Lady of Shallot - which I have worn but haven't swatched yet. TBH I was a bit disappointed with it, it was a blackened shade that to my eye just looked black all the time on the nail. I have a friend with the Jane Eyre shade and she had the same experience. If that's what you like in a blackened polish, that it's more black than the accent shade, then crack on this promo is for you :-) there are also non blackened shades in the offer too...

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Nine Realms by Crowstoes : Nidavellir

Hello ladies! Tonight I have the final post from the Crowstoes 9 Realms collection.  Tonight's polish, "Nidavellir", takes its name from the homeworld of the dwarves in Norse Mythology.

Nidavellir by Crowstoes - natural light (shade)
Nidavellir by Crowstoes - natural light (shade)
  Like collection-mates Muspelheim and Vanaheim, Nidavellir is a duochrome micro-glitter polish.  Densely packed with colour shifting glitters this shade shifts from teal blue to purple.  Pictured here in natural light (in the shade) you can see all the colours on the nail at once, but in all other lighting conditions one of the three shades will dominate depending on the angle of the nail to the light source.

Nidavellir by Crowstoes - artificial light
Nidavellir by Crowstoes - artificial light
 The microglitter duochrome formula is really intriguing in these polishes....they remind me of pointillist paintings, tiny spots of colour coming together to make something beautiful.  In artificial lighting (below) you can see the lovely jewel tones of the blue-indigo-purple shades in transition.  The bottom of the bottle lets you see the full spectrum in the polish, but the gold tone you see peeking through doesn't translate to the nail (nails aren't as curved as the inside of a bottle!)

Nidavellir by Crowstoes - artificial light
Nidavellir by Crowstoes - artificial light
In these pics I'm wearing two coats over black undies, with NE base and HK Girl topcoat.  No issues with formula and application, all Crowstoes polishes are top notch in the quality stakes.  Below you can see the final swatches which are taken in direct sunlight.  Here you can see that the main shade is far more of a teal green/blue than the royal blue shade you get under artificial light.  Also, the end tone is much more of a magenta than the purple you get under artificial light. This polish, like its collection mates, is a real chameleon.  I really liked this one.

Nidavellir by Crowstoes - sunlight
Nidavellir by Crowstoes - sunlight
I picked up my bottle for £10.25 from Rainbow Connection (link in the suppliers page).   This is my last post in the 9 Realms collection series, I hope you've enjoyed it :) This is a very special collection, and well worth a look if you can find it in stock.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Nine Realms by Crowstoes : Muspelheim

Hello Ladies! Today I have another of the fabulous polishes from the Crowstoes 9 Realms collection - tonight's offering is the lovely (but unpronounceable) "Muspelheim":

In Norse legend Muspelheim is the flaming inferno volcanic home of the fire giants.  I don't know that I would have picked a blue based shade to represent a fire planet, by hey I'm not the creative at work here.  Muspelheim the polish is a multichrome glitter in a blurple base.  It is packed with teeny tiny glitter particles in royal blue and golden yellow that produce a multichrome spectrum from royal blue to purple.  The golden particles don't really show on the nail as clearly as in the bottle (except in the closeup thumb nail shots below).

Pictured here I'm wearing my customary two coats with NE base and HK girl topcoat.  In the swatches at the top of this post you can see Muspelheim in the sunshine - in the shade is the only time you'll see both colours on the nail at once, otherwise the main colour is either the royal blue shade or the blurple. The magenta shade here is really hard to capture because it's not really seen except at really high angles to the light source.

In the thumbshots below you can see all the lovely details of this polish.  Unfortunately these details aren't quite so obvious on the nail unless you look quite closely.  I really did like this shade a lot, but it's one of those that's just not quite as fabulous as it promises in the bottle.

I bought my bottle of Muspelheim for £10.25 from Rainbow Connection (link in the Suppliers page). This is a lovely shade, I think I was just a little spoiled by this point because I'd tried collection-mates Huginn and Muninn, and Vanaheim, right before - and those are bonkers good!  I do recommend Muspelheim, especially if like me you're a big fan of purple/blurple shades.

Saturday, 1 November 2014

Nail mail : Colors by Llarowe Fall 2014

I just couldn't wait to swatch these before sharing :-) The colors by llarowe Fall collection is out now in the UK (@ rainbow connection) and I was so excited to grab three of the shades (although if I had the money I'd buy them all!). I picked (left to right) Burning Embers, Midnight in Montana and Obsession.  I can't wait to try these out!

Shown here are all the shades in natural and artificial light. My initial thoughts are that Midnight is the clear standout of the bunch. Obsession reminded me of A England Briarwood but a quick side by side comparison shows that Briarwood is much redder. I'll compare these properly when I post swatches.