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OPI On Her Majesty's Secret Service

By A Lacquered Affair · October 14, 2012 · 0 Comments ·

"On Her Majesty's Secret Service is the sixth spy film in the James Bond series, based on the 1963 novel of the same name by Ian Fleming." - Wikipedia

Good Sunday evening/ afternoon/ morning, lovelies! I've got so many posts to keep up with this month and with so much going on in October, it's the perfect opportunity to showcase some of the beauties that have been lining up.

With a new James Bond film, Skyfall, releasing very soon, OPI has launched a 12-piece Skyfall Holiday 2012 Collection to mark 50 years of James Bond 007, all named after Bond film titles. The 13th polish comes in a special limited edition bottle, a 18K gold leaf polish named Man With The Golden Gun (not released in Singapore yet, maybe ever?).

OPI Skyfall Counter @ Metro, Singapore
OPI Skyfall display at Metro Dept Store, Singapore (taken with iPhone 4S)

The promo shots for the collection were so promising, but upon looking at them in real life at the counter, only 2 screamed "buy me!" (thank goodness for testers). On Her Majesty's Secret Service was one of them.

OPI On Her Majesty's Secret Service

An intricate blend of blue-green, purple and gold-bronze flecks/ particles in a blue, charcoal grey shimmery base, this seems like the blue-grey cousin of Number One Nemesis (a favourite of mine) from their earlier The Amazing Spider-Man collection. This is 2 coats of On Her Majesty's Secret Service over 1 coat of Poshe 4-in-1 Treatment Basecoat, topped with 1 layer of Cult Nails Wicked Fast Topcoat:

OPI On Her Majesty's Secret ServiceIndoors, artificial light

Like most OPI polishes, the formula applies seamlessly. It's too sheer for a single coat, so a second coat is necessary. Without a topcoat, the glossy finish is acceptable, but a topcoat brings out the shimmers and sparkles more.

OPI On Her Majesty's Secret ServiceOutdoors, sunlight

A close-up at all the shimmers, flecks, specks, particles and all the goodness in the polish:

OPI On Her Majesty's Secret Service

It's been said (and compared) that On Her Majesty's Secret Service is a dead dupe for Zoya FeiFei, but I do not own it to compare. Because of the likeness, I struck FeiFei off my lemming list. So this remains a unique polish in my stash (for now).

Personally, I was a little disappointed that the collection did not present holiday shades/ finishes, which could be a nice twist, being inspired by Bond. But 80% of the shades aren't what I would gravitate towards. What are some of your picks from this collection?

Till next post, have a lovely weekend!

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

To Leave a Comment: I've noted that OnSugar's Comment feature has caused a few readers frustration by not accepting their input. While OnSugar works on rectifying it, I did a trial and error and found that comments don't get red-taped if you enter your information in the "Name" field without any space, ie. "ALacqueredAffair" instead of "A Lacquered Affair". I hope this works. As much as I want to, OnSugar doesn't allow the disabling of Captcha.

Disclaimer: I am not sponsored/ endorsed by any of the above-mentioned companies. All opinions expressed are my own, and will always be. All products were purchased by me.

Polish Days #5: Sentimental

By A Lacquered Affair · October 10, 2012 · 0 Comments ·

| sen-tuh-men-tl |
"expressive of or appealing to sentiment, especially the tender emotions and feelings, as love, pity or nostagia" - Dictionary.com

Hi again this week, lovelies!

I'm surprised at the shorter intervals between blog posts this month, despite being crazy busy at work and home! Sometimes, I'm glad some of these challenges and events exist. They bring people together, facilitate the discovery of more amazing polish people, and push you to the limits to get polishing/ posting!

Not too many photos for this installment of Polish Days as compared to words, I'm afraid (let the yawns begin).

I've chosen my 2 oldest polishes for this installment, because one came to my possession in hope of being an alternative 'back-up' for the other. These were pre-polish-obsessed days acquisitions, ie. when I was a muggle (as The Subtle Shimmer usually puts it).

Paul & Joe 06 Framboises
A pink mauve creme with the loveliest formula that glides on effortlessly in 1 coat (2 if one is obssessive). It is said that all Paul & Joe polishes are scented with their signature soft floral scent, and contain nourishing ingredients from a blend of Vitamin E, jojoba seed oil, and chamomile extract, among others.

Paul & Joe 06 Framboises

This was my very first polish splurge, in 2008. I've been loving Paul & Joe for its charming, vintage romantic floral motifs, and the occasional incorporation of cats into their themes. There was no way I could afford their clothing with designer label price tag, so I looked to their cosmetics when I was searching for a polish closest to this next polish.

Dior (unknown)
This is a pearlescent shade of dusky mauve, with blue and purple shimmers, and a frost finish (a no-no in my post-polish-obsession days). Brush strokes are unavoidable with this finish. It is so old that the label on the other side is completely faded, and there's no trace of the name or number to identify it.

Dior (unknown)
This little baby was a gift from a friend/ classmate some 7 to 8 years ago after she came back from Hong Kong. To receive something with a designer label was a huge deal as a struggling student. But more than that, it meant so much to me as she was trying to cheer me up. Those few years were the roughest that, sometimes, buried me to the lowest depths. But I was also thrusted to some of the highest points in my life then - all life experiences that no wealth can buy.

So this kinda of reflected my time then - I cringe at the shade and finish, especially now, after being exposed to a wide variety of amazing shades and finishes. The formula has gotten difficult to work with. But I treasure it because it is a meaningful gift and a luxury (kinda, back then, maybe now still, since I do not own polishes from designer labels).

Here's 1 coat of both (2 on the middle finger) without topcoat:

Paul & Joe 06 Framboises and Dior (unknown)
Alternate from left: Dior (unknown) and Paul & Joe 06 Framboises

I got the finish and shade so wrong, I really did not know better 4 years ago (and, sometimes, even now). And here's a feeble attempt at colour-blocking, freehand:

Paul & Joe 06 Framboises and Dior (unknown)

They do look pretty sweet together, but alone, too 'granny' even for me. But they are definitely staying put in my stash. These are polishes of sentimental value to me, though not what got me hoarding. Now, that is another story to be told.

So, what's your polish story? These ladies have their own too!

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Disclaimer: I am not sponsored/ endorsed by any of the above-mentioned companies. All opinions expressed are my own, and will always be. All products were purchased by me, unless stated otherwise.

Daring Digits Tweety & Sylvester

By A Lacquered Affair · October 6, 2012 · 0 Comments ·

Tweety & Sylvester
Popular illustrated characters that went from comic books in the 1960s, to children's animated TV series by Warner Bros from 1970s.
"Sylvester Cat is a lisping, inept, and often loud-mouthed cartoon alley cat with a penchant for chasing elusive mice and a weakness for various types of fowl, especially an innocent-looking but fiesty yellow canary named Tweety, whom Sylvester would like nothing better than to roast and eat." - IMDb

October is already here! There are so many noteworthy events going on in the nail polish world, mostly coinciding with or inspired by real-life events and observances. And I still think that's incredible how the polish world comes together for positive reasons. To name a few, there's #PolishUsPink for Breast Cancer Awareness month, #holothon to showcase all the amazing holographic polishes out there, and Halloween, of course! (Search these hashtags to view posts/ tweets related to these events on Instagram or Twitter). I'm terribly bummed that I can't be as involved as I want to due to hectic work and personal commitments.

Anyway, I'm honoured and excited to share this adorable pair of nail polishes, customed by Daring Digits for Mei Mei's Signatures, which retails exclusively on her online store; the limited edition Tweety & Sylvester Mini Duo Set. I have vivid recollections of staying glued to their cartoon series every Saturday or Sunday morning as a young kid. This set definitely brought back memories.

"I tawt I taw a puddy tat!"

Daring Digits Tweety & Sylvester"I did! I did taw a puddy tat!"

How are adorable are the feuding pair! Just like the characters they've been mixed to emulate, these glitter toppers are cartoony-cute.

"Sylvester J. Pussycat Sr., Sylvester the Cat, or simply Sylvester, or Puddy Tat, is a fictional character, a three-time Academy Award-winning anthropomorphic Tuxedo cat in the Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies repertory, often chasing Tweety Bird, Speedy Gonzales, or Hippety Hopper. The name "Sylvester" is a play on Felis silvestris, the scientific name for the wild cat species (domestic cats like Sylvester, though, are actually Felis catus)." - Wikipedia

Representing distinctive physical features of the character, Sylvester (the polish) is a mix of large red hex glitter (for his bulbous nose), large round black glitter (for his pupils), and small white and black hex glitter (for his fur) in a clear base.
I'm charmed by the round glitter as it rarely comes by (in my stash, at least). Here's one coat of Sylvester, solo:

Daring Digits SylvesterThe glitter may be sparse, but stark. The effect looks rather cute and cartoony on its own. The only issue was fishing for the black round glitter. My obsession with having it on my nails resulted in the clear base being stringy by the time I applied to my nails. A good roll of the bottle should bring the formula back to 'normal'.

Here's Sylvester layered over a canary yellow creme, Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Yellow Kitty:

Daring Digits Sylvester over Sally Hansen Yellow Kitty1 coat Poshe 4-in-1 Treatment basecoat
3 coats Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Yellow Kitty
1 coat Daring Digits Sylvester
1 coat Cult Nails Wicked Fast topcoat

Now why does the finished look remind me of Pikachu instead of Sylvester with Tweety?

Side note: Yellow Kitty's formula was incredibly streaky and the extra wide but slightly pointed brush was awkward to paint with.
Personal Fact: I'm a cat person, so out of the two, Sylvester's my favourite.

"Tweety Bird (also known as Tweety Pie, or simply Tweety) is a fictional Yellow Canary in the Warner Bros. Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies series of animated cartoons. The name "Tweety" is a play on words, as it originally meant "sweetie", along with "tweet" being a typical English onomatopoeia for the sounds of birds... Despite the perceptions that people may hold, owing to the long lashes and high pitched voice of Tweety, Tweety is male." - Wikipedia

Just like Sylvester, Tweety reflects the distinct physical attributes of the character - mid-sized yellow hex glitter (his feathers), mid-sized bright orange hex glitter (his beak and feet) and bright blue small and tiny hex glitters (his iris).
Here's a look at Tweety solo, in 1 coat:
Daring Digits TweetyLike Sylvester, the density is sparse, but works well on the nails with the dab-and-spread technique. No 'fishing' issue. Both are generously pumped with suspension base, probably the reason the formula gets thick and a little goopy after 'playing' around with it for a while. If you're not fussing over the glitter placement like I did, application should be easy.

Here's Tweety layered over a tuxedo black creme base - the glorious one-coater that is a-england Camelot (I have mindpolish to thank for constantly tempting me to get it):

Daring Digits Tweety over a-england Camelot

1 coat Poshe 4-in-1 Treatment basecoat
1 coat a-england Camelot
2 coats Daring Digits Tweety
1 coat Cult Nails Wicked Fast topcoat

I'm absolutely loving this combination the most! Tweety stands out vividly against the stark black beauty.

Personal Fact: I'm not too fond of cutesy characters, especially those who baby-talks.

Despite all their mad chases and scuffles, they are stuck together. So why not the namesake polishes too? Here's 1 coat of Tweety over 1 coat of Sylvester:

Daring Digits Tweety & Sylvester layered

Daring Digits Tweety over Sylvester
Together, they're like a whimsical funhouse on the nails!

I tried layering them over China Glaze Re-Fresh Mint, a mint green, but I'm not liking this combination at all. They would probably stand out better over an opaque nude.

Daring Digits Tweety & Sylvester over China Glaze Re-Fresh Mint

What do you reckon is a complementing base colour to layer Tweety and Sylvester over?

In my previous review of Daring Digits Punch Me Purple, the brush comparison was done here.

This exclusive-to-Mei Mei's Signatures limited edition Tweety & Sylvester Mini Duo Set comes in a 9ml bottle each, and retails at SGD 15.00. Also, from now till 7th October 2012, all regular-sized Daring Digits in the store are SGD 12.00 each (usual: SGD 15.00). Normal delivery within Singapore is free. International shipping is also available.

Enjoy your weekend, lovelies, perhaps over a nostalgic animated cartoon on TV!

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

To Leave a Comment: I've noted that OnSugar's Comment feature has caused a few readers frustration by not accepting their input. While OnSugar works on rectifying it, I did a trial and error and found that comments don't get red-taped if you enter your information in the "Name" field without any space, ie. "ALacqueredAffair" instead of "A Lacquered Affair". I hope this works. As much as I want to, OnSugar doesn't allow the disabling of Captcha.

Disclaimer: This product was sent for review. However, all opinions expressed are my own, and will always be.

Daring Digits Punch Me Purple

By A Lacquered Affair · September 26, 2012 · 0 Comments ·

"Purple fine holographic glitter purple medium hex and tiny white hexes are packed into this topper polish!" - Daring Digits

Hi lovelies!

This photo-heavy post features 2 of my favourites combined in a polish; purple and glitter!

Daring Digits is an indie nail polish brand by Ashley which started selling on Etsy since February 2012. Back in the first half of this year, I was introduced to the world of indie polishes (all thanks to Twitter) on Etsy. Daring Digits was one of the brands I kept in my 'Favourites', but could never get my hands on as international shipping is not an option. Fast-forward a few months, Mei Mei's Signatures (our local polish stockist) becomes the exclusive stockist for Daring Digits.

First Impressions
The first thing that grabbed my attention was the banner and logo - bright splashes of rainbow colours against a stark background that, to me, scream no-holds-barred creativity. Daring Digits is known for the adventurous glitter mixes, with the occasional inpiration from (geeky) pop culture (grins).Daring Digits Label

Label on the bottle

While the logo has been recently updated, the feel remains unchanged.

Punch Me Purple
...is predominantly a dense mix of mid-sized purple square and hex glitters, showered with small white hex glitter and with a dash of tiny holographic hex glitter in a clear base.

Daring Digits Punch Me Purple

The unique shape of the bottle makes it pretty memorable.

Meant as a glitter topper, the polish does not give a good coverage on the nails, but the consistency of the formula is easy to work with. As with most glitter toppers, the dab-and-spread method of application applies. Here's 1 coat, solo:

Daring Digits Punch Me Purple - 1 coatIndoors, daylight

I thought this looked pretty and feminine.
And if one has a tolerance for a thick 3-coat...

Daring Digits Punch Me Purple - 3 coats

Here are a couple of variations I enjoyed playing around with:

Over Cremes

a-england Camelot and GuinevereOutdoors, daylight

Daring Digits Punch Me Purple over a-england Camelot and Guinvere

1 coat Poshe 4-in-1 Treatment basecoat
Index and ring fingers - 2 coats a-england Guinevere
Middle finger and pinky - 2 coats a-england Camelot
1 coat Daring Digits Punch Me Purple
1 coat a-england The Shield topcoat

Over Jellies

Megan Miller Pink Lily, Lemon Ice, Caribbean & GanacheIndoors, daylight

Daring Digit Punch Me Purple Over Pastel Jellies1 coat Poshe 4-in-1 Treatment basecoat
Index finger - 3 coats Megan Miller Pink Lily
Middle finger - 2 coats Megan Miller Lemon Ice
Ring finger - 2 coats Megan Miller Caribbean
Pinky - 2 coats Megan Miller Ganache (creme)
1 coat Daring Digits Punch Me Purple

Okay, so I mistook Ganache for a jelly. Apparently, I don't read up enough. *hangs head in shame*

In a Jelly Sandwich
Well, since jellies are already in play...

Daring Digits Punch Me Purple in a Megan Miller Jelly SandwichIndoors, daylight

On top of the previous layers, I layered 1 coat of the same respective jellies. However, I did a layer of Lemon Ice over the Ganache combination (an awfully wrong choice, I must admit). No topcoat. I'm loving this look best!

The Brush
Brushes are an important factor to me. And while Daring Digits may not boast a wide brush, it is of decent width and length to get the job done. A little on the soft side.

OPI vs Daring Digits BrushFrom left: OPI and Daring Digits brushes

A 12ml Daring Digits retails for SGD 15.00 at Mei Mei's Signatures. The newer 16.5ml bottle also retails for the same price.
FYI, a-england and Megan Miller are also available at Mei Mei's Signatures at SGD 16.00 and SGD 18.00 respectively. International shipping is available.

That's all for today folks. I've got to catch me some snooze for the long mid-week ahead.


Disclaimer: This product was sent for review. However, all opinions expressed are my own, and will always be.

Models Own Purple Grey

By A Lacquered Affair · September 19, 2012 · 0 Comments ·

"Purple Grey is great for occasions that require a little restraint. This murky shade of purple gives a sense of mystery with a touch of class." - Pixelated Nails

How's the new week been, lovelies? Time just flies too fast! We're halfway through September. Time has been so tight, I'm actually drafting this post at work while on my break, ever-so-often looking over my shoulders for snooping eyes.

Here's somewhat of a back-to-basics post. I've been overwhelmed by all the fancy beauties that have found a home in my chaotic stash. For the first time in months, here's a straight-up creme. This one's from Models Own, a made-in-UK make-up brand known for their fashion and trendy colours.

 Models Own Purple Grey

Clean yet stark, simple yet stylish; this is Models Own Purple Grey:

Models Own Purple GreyIndoors, artificial light

1 coat Poshe 4-in-1 Treatment Basecoat
2 coats Models Own Purple Grey
No top coat

A dusky fusion of aubergine and grey, it dries to a rather plastic/ vinyl finish. I feel that this gives the wearer the option of a trendy vinyl look, or top it off with top coat for a classy manicure. The formula was a little on the thick side, but application was relatively easy. This is one fall-ready shade!

Compare & Contrast
I tried fishing for some possible Purple Grey dupes from my stash. Among the 'contenders' were
Barielle Get Mauve-ing, OPI Parlez-vous OPI?, China Glaze Below Deck and Sally Hansen Commander In Chic.

Models Own Purple Grey Comparisons

I found the closest to be Tony Moly TR09 Deep Purple and Essie Smokin' Hot.

Models Own Purple Grey vs Tony Moly TR09 Deep Purple vs Essie Smokin' Hot From left: Purple Grey, TR09 Deep Purple, Purple Grey, Smokin' Hot

1 coat Poshe 4-in-1 Treatment Basecoat
2 coats of respective polishes
Cult Nails Wicked Fast Top Coat

Tony Moly TR09 Deep Purple (ring finger) proves to be the closest dupe to Purple Grey. There's perhaps a slightest tinge more of grey  in TR09 Deep Purple. Essie Smokin' Hot is many shades deeper, with a slight blue tinge. While the application of TR09 Deep Purple was smooth, it dried to a dull, uninspiring finish without a top coat.

Brushes Aside
Now let's get their swords, I mean brushes, out and compare who's got the biggest of them all!

Models Own Brush Comparison

I'm aware that some prefer thinner brushes over wider ones. But to give an overview, Models Own's is very similar in thickness as Essie's (ie. thin), though a tad longer. The end of Tony Moly's brush fans out to the width of OPI's, but slightly shorter in length and softer in texture.

Models Own polishes are available online through Pixelated Nails, based in Singapore, for SGD 13.00. International shipping is also available.
As a treat, readers of 'A Lacquered Affair' enjoy 10% off storewide. Simply use the code PN-ALF upon checkout.


Toodles, folks, and have a great mid-week!

Disclaimer: This product was sent for review. However, all opinions expressed are my own, and will always be.

Jade Magia Negro feat. Darling Diva Polish Midnight Love Spell

By A Lacquered Affair · September 13, 2012 · 0 Comments ·

Greetings lovelies!

I've been so overwhelmed with work that I was forced to neglect this blog space (and to some extent, my nails). Lots of exciting content I'm bursting to share, but in all in good time. Promise.

For now, here's a quick post on what I (still) have on my nails; Jade Magia Negro with Darling Diva Polish Midnight Love Spell as an accent nail:

Jade Magia Negro feat. Darling Diva Polish Midnight Love SpellIndoors, artificial light

Pinky, middle and index fingers: 2 coats Magia Negro
Ringer finger: 3 coats Midnight Love Spell
All nails were lined with 1 coat of Poshe and sealed with 1 coat of Cult Nails Wicked Fast Top Coat.

Jade Magia Negro
A near-black charcoal grey polish with holographic pigments. It's not as smooth and consistent as say a Layla and does not require an aqua base, but the effect is near magnificent. The holo tends to shy away under strong white light, or natural daylight, but flashes holo goodness in direct sunlight or light source from one direction (not sure if I'm making any sense).

Application of Magia Negro was fuss-free and the formula was a pleasure to work with. In fact, it dried to a glossy finish! The top coat was just for protection.
Confession: I did not seal the nails on my right hand with top coat. At day 4, I'm only experiencing normal tip wear!
Jade Magia Negro was purchased from Shoppe Eclecticco.

Darling Diva Polish Midnight Love Spell
This is not the first DDP polish I intended to mention on my blog, but, oh well. Midnight Love Spell is all shapes, sizes and colours of glitter pieces thrown in a black jelly base. Here's what I could see:

♥ Large blue hex glitter
♥ Small blue hex glitter
♥ Large green hex glitter
♥ Small green hex glitter
♥ Large silver hex glitter
♥ Small silver hex glitter
♥ Extra large purple square glitter
♥ Large red heart glitter

With all that concoction of glitter, it is definitely gritty but pretty!
Midnight Love Spell is one of the earlier releases and I don't see it being available anymore in her store. This isn't the first DDP polish I've worn, so the strong smell threw me off when I opened the bottle. Very similar to a Models Own glitter polish. I'm not going to go all scientific and investigate. It's just on two nails after all.

Here's a parting shot in the sun:

Jade Magia Negro feat. Darling Diva Polish Midnight Love SpellOutdoors, sunlight

I hope to get a weekend post out. Till then, enjoy the last weekday and have a great weekend ahead!

Disclaimer: I am not sponsored/ endorsed by any of the above-mentioned companies. All opinions expressed are my own, and will always be. All products were purchased by me.

Enchanted Polish Stiletto Pumps

By A Lacquered Affair · August 25, 2012 · 0 Comments ·

| sti-let-oh puhms |
"Light dusty lavender holographic" - Mei Mei's Signatures

The weekend is here! Lovely! By the time this is posted, I'm well on my way on a short, but much-needed, road trip to a little historical state called Malacca in Malaysia for the weekend. All the mentions and photos of trips and getaways (I'm looking at Polly Polish, Saira, The Scarlet Nail Diaries and Polish Me Please) made me decide to go along with the short impromptu trip a group of relatives and family friends planned.

Back to business. Mei Mei's Signatures, who has been working non-stop in stocking popular indie polishes, adds a familiar name to her family - Enchanted Polish. Chelsea (the owner and creator of Enchanted Polish) is known for her sparkly holo polishes and previously sells on Etsy. When Mei Mei announced 4 Enchanted Polish names I've not heard of, my fingers worked to locate photos. Through bottle shots, I fell in love with Stiletto Pumps. It's such a sexy name, and I can never resist dusty shades of purple.

Enchanted Polish Stiletto PumpsJust look at the linear holo goodness! It looks very promising.

This being my first Enchanted Polish, I wasn't sure if it requires an aqua base for the formula to apply smoothly. I applied Nfu•Oh Aqua Base on the middle finger and pinky, Poshe base coat on the ring finger, and no base on my index finger. Here's 2 coats of Stiletto Pumps (no top coat):

Enchanted Polish Stiletto PumpsIndoors, daylight

"*GASP* Where's the holo?!" "Is this the same polish?" I bet you're wondering. The holos love playing hide-and-seek so under strong indoor lighting, it's almost non-existent and resemble a flat metallic lavender-silver.

Here's how it fares in the sun:

Enchanted Polish Stiletto PumpsOutdoors, sunlight

While some holo sparkles are picked up by the camera, it is nowhere near the linear holo intensity seen in the bottle. It seems to gravitate towards being a scattered holo. But under yet another lighting:

Enchanted Polish Stiletto PumpsIndoors, shade

The subtle linear holo creeped out and the shade more deep, dirty lavender. This my favourite view of Stiletto Pumps!
Note to self: layer Stiletto Pumps over a base colour one day.

Application was easy and streak-free when worn on its own or over a normal base coat. I had to deal with some streaking and dragging when applied over an aqua base. 2 coats gave a full opaque coverage.

The brush is set in a circular placement, much thinner, and shorter than OPI's. However, it fans out nicely to go over the nail in 3 - 4 strokes.

Enchanted Polish vs OPI brush
From left: OPI and Enchanted Polish brushes

Enchanted Polish is available at Mei Mei's Signatures at SGD 19.50 (I believe it is a promotional price for a limited time). FYI: Lost My Mind In A Sunrise is a shade exclusive to Mei Mei's Signatures. Shipping within Singapore is free and international shipping is available.

Have your tried any of Enchanted Polish's creations and what are your thoughts?

Have a great weekend, lovelies!

Disclaimer: I am not sponsored/ endorsed by any of the above-mentioned companies. All opinions expressed are my own, and will always be. All products were purchased by me.

Layla Emerald Divine feat. Holo Gradient

By A Lacquered Affair · August 21, 2012 · 0 Comments ·

| hoh-luh-|
An abbreviation of hologram - "A three-dimensional image formed by the interference of light beams from a laser or other coherent light source." - Google Dictionary.com

How's everyone enjoying the start of the week so far? It's the Hari Raya Aidilfitri (or internationally known as Eid ul-Fitr). weekend, marking the end of Ramadhan. This means visits to Muslim friends' and distant relatives' homes, where tantalising home-cooked spread and traditional sweet treats awaits! Public Holiday is observed on Monday = long weekend! *happy dance* Gotta love living in a multi-cultural country!

Without consciously realising it, my stash has been invaded by a handful of linear holo polishes this week (haul photos here, here and here). Shoppe EClecticCo is mainly to be blamed. If you haven't already heard, Shoppe EClecticCo now stocks Layla Cosmetics (from Italy) nail polishes (word is, most of them were sold out within a week!). Layla makes one of the best linear holo polishes, as I was about to experience why.

Here's the first from the recent Laylas I got - Emerald Divine:

Layla Emerald Divine with Flash Black & Mermaid Spell, bottle shotLayla Emerald Divine (foreground), Flash Black (left) and Mermaid Spell (right)

Described as a forest green holo, I instantly noted it down on my lemming list the moment I saw the promo shots. The shade stands out without being in-your-face.

Below is 2 coats of Emerald Divine over Nfu•Oh Aqua Base, topped with Cult Nails Wicked Fast Top Coat:

Layla Emerald Divine Indoors, artificial light

It didn't take too much effort to capture the holo in the above lighting. 3 clicks and I was done! And in the sun, the holo effect was magnifico!

Layla Emerald Divine in the sunOutdoors, sunlight (taken with iPhone 4S)

Like most linear holo polishes, wear time is extremely short. It's such a peeve. Such gorgeousness should adorn the nails for more than 24 hours. By the end of the next day, I experienced slight tip wear. Not wanting to remove it just yet, I sponged fellow Layla holos on the tips - Mermaid Spell and Flash Black as an accent on the ring finger.

Below is 2 coats of Mermaid Spell and Flash Black in a sponged gradient:

Layla Mermaid Spell & Flash Black sponged over Emerald DivineIndoors, artificial light

Mermaid Spell is a sky blue linear holo from Layla's earlier collection of Hologram Effects. Similarly with Flash Black, a charcoal-grey linear holo. While the blue-green gradient reminds me of the The Great Barrier Reef sparkling in the sun, the charcoal-green variation sort of resembles an oil-slick at sea.

Here's another shot in the sun:

Layla Mermaid Spell & Flash Black sponged over Emerald DivineOutdoors, sunlight

Over an aqua base, Emerald Divine's formula spread on evenly, without being streaky or leaving bald spots. It was a tad sheer to be a one-coater, so a second coat was necessary to set it right.

The Brush
I'm always curious about how different brands' brushes measure up to OPI's ProWide. And Layla's may just be the strongest competitor in this aspect.

Layla vs OPI brushFrom left: Layla and OPI

Layla's brush, much like OPI's, is flat, wide, even and of very similar length and density. In real life, it's just slightly slimmer than OPI's. The wand, though, is shorter than OPI's, which gave a little more control, I felt.

A few have asked about top coats and its effect on linear holo polishes. The concern was that some formulas dull the holo effect. With sound advise from fellow polish enthusiasts such as Annette of Shoppe EClecticCo, The Subtle Shimmer and Inky Polisholicious, I tried on Cult Nails' Wicked Fast Top Coat. Other top coats which have been tested to work well with linear holos are butter LONDON HardWear P.D. Top Coat, a-england The Shield, Seche Vite and Nubar Diamont Shine Top Coat. If you've tried any other top coats over linear holos, I'd love to know how they fared!

Layla Hologram Effect and Mirror Effect polishes are available at Shoppe EClecticCo at SGD 17.00 per 10ml bottle, and Ceramic Effect polishes at SGD 12.00 per 10ml bottle. International shipping is available.

Watch this space for more posts on other Layla Hologram and Mirror Effect polishes. Till then, have a wonderful week ahead!

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

To Leave a Comment: I've noted that the OnSugar platform's Comment box has caused a few readers frustration by not accepting their input. While OnSugar works on rectifying it, I did a trial and error and found that comments don't get red-taped if you enter your information in the "Name" field without any space, ie. "ALacqueredAffair" instead of "A Lacquered Affair". I hope this works :)

Disclaimer: I am not sponsored/ endorsed by any of the above-mentioned companies. All opinions expressed are my own, and will always be. All products were purchased by me.

China Glaze Halloween 2012 Wicked Collection

By A Lacquered Affair · August 6, 2012 · 0 Comments ·

<meta name="keywords" content="China" glaze="" halloween="" 2012="" wicked="" collection="" immortal="" bizarre="" blurple="" cast="" a="" spell="" make="" spectable="" glitter="" goblin="" nubar="" verde="" orly="" mysterious="" curse="" swatches="" reviews="" />

| hal-uh-ween |
"(a shortening of All Hallows’ Evening), also known as Hallowe'en or All Hallows' Eve, is a yearly holiday observed around the world on 31 October, the night before All Saints' Day.
Typical festive Halloween activities include trick-or-treating (also known as "guising"), attending costume parties, carving jack-o'-lanterns, lighting bonfires, apple bobbing, visiting haunted attractions, playing pranks, telling scary stories, and watching horror films" - Wikipedia
(I'd like to add Halloween-inspired nail art painting to the list)

This is not a trick, lovelies. China Glaze Halloween treats drifted in early this year! I've been eyeing them since March. Nail mail has never materialised into a blog post this fast for me.

This is a 6-piece collection, but Roguish Red was not on my to-buy list. Sorry to disappoint, but I won't have a swatch for it. If you know me well, you'll know that I tend to shy away from bright reds, corals and oranges, among a few others.China Glaze Wicked Collection Halloween 2012(I have no idea where I got this Russ Halloween kitty from, or why I still have it, but it's the only occasion-appropriate prop I could find)

Visually, this collection exudes a typical Halloween vibe. You've got a red for blood, a grey for tombstones (as mindpolish was quick to point out), a glittery orangey copper for Jack O'-Lantern, a blue-purple for the magic of witches and wizards, a sheer iridescent for ethereal apparitions, and a dingy green-gold for monsters, creepy crawlies and everything else in between.


Bizarre Blurple
From its name and promo shots, Bizarre Blurple suggests hints of duochrome or shimmer. In reality, it's a rich blue-purple shade with subtle blue shimmer, and an even subtler purple shimmer.

China Glaze Bizarre Blurple
Here's 2 coats of Bizarre Blurple (over 1 coat of butter LONDON Nail Foundation, with 1 coat of Cult Nails Wicked Fast top coat; for all subsequent swatches as well, unless indicated otherwise):

China Glaze Bizarre BlurpleIndoors, artifical light

On the first coat, it seems like intense blue pigments and shimmer particles were thrown into a purple jelly base. The formula was easy to work with, achieving full opacity in 2 coats. I was anxious about visible brush strokes, but it was self-leveling. It dried smooth and glossy, even without a top coat.
I'd like to think that the magical shimmery finish of Bizarre Blurple resembles the lush, velvety cloak of a wizard. Magical, because sometimes you see it (under bright lighting), sometimes you don't (under low lighting). But it is more impressive on the nails than in the bottle.

Bizarre Blurple is not a terribly unique shade to some, but the closest polish I have is Orly Mysterious Curse (the name's very Halloween-appropriate too!). Here's how they compare:

China Glaze Bizarre Blurple vs Orly Mysterious CursePinky & middle finger: China Glaze Bizarre Blurple. Ring and index fingers: Orly Mysterious Curse

While Bizarre Blurple is a (subtle) shimmer, Mysterious Curse is a metallic, two-coater (subtle) duochrome that shifts from teal to purple. Brush strokes are also slightly more visible with Mysterious Curse, but the formula was a breeze to work with.

(Note: Double up on the base coat with these 2 polishes for staining's a b*tch)


Cast A Spell
This one's a foil, rich with olive green, antique gold shimmer and fine glitter particles in a black base. I'm a sucker for such colours and finish, even though this might not be groundbreakingly new or unique.

China Glaze Cast A SpellBut this one casted a spell on me at first swipe. Lo and behold - one coat and top(coat)less!

China Glaze Cast A SpellOutdoors, daylight

China Glaze Cast A Spell (indoors)Indoors, daylight.

It is generously pigmented, and the consistency of the formula is divine. It leveled seamlessly on the nails. Once I'd gotten the hang of it, I didn't even need to clean up the ring finger and pinky (I work from index to pinky, most of the time).

Where have I seen a similar shade? *rummages through stash* The closest polish I have is Nubar Verde and here's a comparison:

China Glaze Cast A Spell vs Nubar VerdePinky & middle finger: China Glaze Cast A Spell. Ring & index fingers: Nubar Verde

Verde has a teal tinge to it, so it's nowhere close. Streaky on the first coat, but 2 coats and it's opaque. A layer of top coat was needed for gloss. Depth-wise, not as striking as Cast A Spell.


Never trust promo shots. It''s usually overwhelming or vice versa. In this case, the promo shots do not do this unique grey any justice. I loved Cast A Spell for obvious reasons, but Immortal is an unexpected surprise!

Immortal is a slate grey creme, with turqoise and fuchsia shimmer!

China Glaze ImmortalHere's Immortal in 2 coats:

China Glaze ImmortalOutdoors, daylight

China Glaze ImmortalIndoors, daylight

China Glaze Immortal macro shotIndoors, daylight

Although pretty pigmented, I find the viscosity a tad runny, but I'll take runny over goopy any day. It dries to some level of gloss, but nothing comparable to Cast A Spell's.
Immortal is edgy, without being vampy, with a hint of girliness.

Now, I don't have other polishes in a similar shade to compare this with. I take it as a sign of good-buy.


Glitter Goblin
What's a Halloween collection without glitter? This year's offering is a mix of small, orangey-copper and holographic hex glitter in a clear base. Again, do not trust promo shots. This one's disappointing. Orangey-copper shades aren't attractive to me, or on me. With a name like Glitter Goblin, I was expecting something more sneaky and intense.

China Glaze Glitter GoblinI do, however, like that it's packed with holo glitter that glows and does its magic in the sunlight. Unfortunately, the sun went down by the time I swatched this.

Nevertheless, here's Glitter Goblin in 2 coats:

China Glaze Glitter GoblinIndoors, artificial light

China Glaze Glitter GoblinIndoors, artficial light

This medium-density glitter spreads rather easily over the nails, without having to continually fish for glitter. So, you get the option of using it as a glitter top coat over a base colour, or 2 to 3 coats for a full glitter-bombed mani. The gritty texture was tamed with a layer of top coat.

Here are some variations over the other polishes from this collection (click on image to enlarge):

                        China Glaze Glitter Goblin over Cast A SpellChina Glaze Glitter Goblin over Immortal

Maybe I'll try it over black one day and call it "The Slutty Pumpkin" (guess what this is in reference to).
Continue on below for Glitter Goblin over Bizarre Blurple.


Make A Spectacle
I've noticed a few people speculating if Make A Spectacle is another Lush And Luxe from China Glaze's The Hunger Games Capitol Colors collection. Not quite.
Looking at it through the bottle, my first instinct was to grab Snow Globe to compare. They have that same iridescent hex glitter. Make A Spectacle has a frosty white glow to it, while Snow Globe's clear base seem more off-white.

China Glaze Make A SpectacleChina Glaze Snow Globe bottle shotBottle shot of China Glaze Snow Globe

Here's Make A Spectacle in 1 coat:

China Glaze Make A Spectacle (1 coat)Outdoors, daylight

Along with the iridescent hex glitter, this ethereal beauty also consists of tiny iridescent flecks. (I'm still debating if it's flakies, but flakies are larger, and colour-shifting, no?)

In 2 coats:

China Glaze Make A SpectacleOutdoors, daylight

(Oh gosh, feeling conscious of my irregular nail beds.)
LOVE how the flecks add a little twinkle to the areas not covered by glitter. The formula is thicker than the others, but manageable.

Here's a close-up showing the mentioned flecks:

China Glaze Make A SpectacleAnd here's how it compares with Snow Globe and Lush And Luxe (all in one coat over Bizarre Blurple):

China Glaze Snow Globe vs Make A Spectacle vs Lush And LuxeFrom left: China Glaze Snow Globe, Make A Spectacle and Lush And Luxe.

And before I put my Reynolds Wrap® Aluminum Foil to good use, here's a parting shot:

China Glaze Glitter Goblin over Make A Spectacle over Bizarre BlurpleFrom left: Glitter Goblin over Luush And Luze, Make A Spectacle and Snow Globe, (all over Bizarre Blurple)

So, will any part of China Glaze's Wicked Collection have a home in your stash? I'd love to know if you've spotted any dupes.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

For those outside the US, if you're keen on getting your hands on the full China Glaze Wicked Collection now, head to Star Trinkets and drop her an email. Priced at SGD 60 for a set of 6 (including Roguish Red) + SGD 15 for shipping.

Disclaimer: I am not sponsored/ endorsed by any of the above-mentioned companies. All opinions expressed are my own, and will always be. All products were purchased by me.

Star Trinkets: The Secret Garden Collection

By A Lacquered Affair · July 29, 2012 · 0 Comments ·

The Secret Garden
"The Secret Garden is a novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett. It was initially published in serial format starting in the autumn of 1910, and was first published in its entirety in 1911. It is now one of Burnett's most popular novels, and is considered to be a classic of English children's literature." - Wikipedia

How're you doing, lovelies?

This post is long overdue, and probably too late. Still, I'm proud to share with you a 'handmade in Singapore' polish collection by Susan of Star Trinkets (who also blogs under the pseudonym The Subtle Shimmer) - The Secret Garden. Urm, well, 3 of 4 polishes from the collection.

A collection inspired by a novel of the same name, the names of the polishes derived from distinctive quotes. When she released a preview of the collection, I was immediately drawn to these 3! Meet The Magic's in Me!, Silverbells & Cockleshells and It's Wick!

Star Trinkets: The Secret Garden - The Magic's in Me!, Silverbells & Cockleshells, It's Wick!

The Magic's in Me!
"The children described the things they could not explain as “magic” – nature, willpower, and love. Colin believed he will be able to start walking if he cast a spell by chanting “the magic is in me”. - Star Trinkets

This polish is described as being "full of holo glitter “hidden” in the sheer, shimmery reddish purple base" with "larger fuchsia and gold hex glitter".Star Trinkets The Magic's in Me!The specks in the macro inset aren't 'noise' but shimmer particles. The sheer jelly base is almost fluorescent, reflecting a purplish-blue glow. Perhaps it seems fluorescent to someone who isn't used to a bright fuchsia polish.
Initially, I layered it over a base colour, but later found it unnecessary. So I swatched this again another day.

Here's one coat of The Magic's in Me! (over a coat of Nail Tek Foundation III Ridge-filling base coat):

Star Trinkets The Magic's in Me! 1 coatYes, that much glitter spread over the nails, without any fuss! No glitter 'fishing' required. The formula went on smoothly. The consistency was not as thick as some glitter polishes.

A second coat, and I was done (finished with a layer of INM Northern Lights Hologram Top Coat, without the holo bits)!

Star Trinkets The Magic's in Me! 2 coatsThe shade is brighter than what I'm normally comfortable with but the glitter mix is whimsically girly and adorable! I also posted on Instagram how pretty it remained even during removal.
Here's one more shot in the shade, with a hint of daylight:

Star Trinkets The Magic's in Me!<span><strong>

Silverbells & Cockleshells</strong></span>
"When Mary got teased before coming to Misselthwaite, another child will recite the rhyme “Mary, Mary Quite Contrary” to her. The line “with silver bells and cockle shells” was what came to mind when this lacquer was created, so Silverbells & Cockleshells it became!" - Star Trinkets

This next polish is described as "a sheer dark greyish base full of micro silver glitter. There are also small gold and white squares, mid-sized gold and black glitter, and large white hex glitter."

Star Trinkets Silverbells & CockleshellsNew Year's Eve party immediately comes to mind when I look at this glitter mix. It's like a bunch of compressed confetti ready to be burst in the air at the stroke of midnight.
Again, I thought it needed to be layered over a base colour. The variations:

Ulta3 Black Satin, Jessica Iridescent Eye, Star Trinkets Silverbells & CockleshellsOver 1 coat of Nail Tek Foundation III, from left: 1 coat Ulta 3 Black Satin, 2 coats Jessica Iridescent Eye, 1 coat Silverbells & Cockleshells on both middle and index fingers.

After one more layer of Silverbells & Cockleshells over all 4 nails (finished with 1 coat of a-england The Shield top coat):

Star Trinkets Silverbells & CockleshellsOn its own, opacity is achieved in 2 coats (index and middle fingers). Over the ring finger and pinky, hints of the base colour is still visible.
Star Trinkets Silverbells & CockleshellsLeft: 2 coats of Silverbells & Cockleshells
Right: 1 coat of Silverbells & Cockleshells over 2 coats of Jessica Iridescent Eye

Personally, I prefer it on its own. 2 coats allow for more of the glittery, shimmery goodness to spread onto the nails. Like The Magic's in Me!, the glitter content is dense and spreads itself really well, except for the larger hex and squares. Still, a decent amount went on the nails without having to fish for them.


It's Wick!
“Wick” is used the describe a plant that’s still alive. Dickon determined this by cutting away some of the bark to reveal the green beneath. The children were so excited to discover than many of the plants in the secret garden were wick." - Star Trinkets

Saved the best for last. It's Wick! is a "shimmery green base full of micro glitter in two different shades of blue. It also has gold squares and a sprinkling of fuchsia, silver, and blue hex glitter, as well as the occasional black hex." Hmm, I did not find the rare black hex (yet).

Star Trinkets It's Wick!Again, check out the shimmer particles. There's a magical glow when the sunlight hits these particles. They're like pixie dust!
Not having learnt my lesson the third time, I started with a few base colours to see the effect when It's Wick is layered over them.

Ulta3 Black Satin, Megan Miller Caribbean, Pink Lily, Star Trinkets It's WickOver 1 coat of Nail Tak Foundation III, from left: 1 coat Ulta3 Black Satin, 2 coats Megan Miller Caribbean, 2 coats Megan Miller Pink Lily, 1 coat It's Wick!

Here's 1 coat of It's Wick over all 4 (finished with 1 coat of a-england The Shield top coat):

Star Trinkets It's Wick!Close-ups:

Star Trinkets It's Wick close-upsLeft: 2 coats of It's Wick!
Right: 1 coat of It's Wick! over 2 coats of Megan Miller Pink Lily

I commented on Instagram that this polish gives a flirty floral feel. Again, no problems getting a generous dose of glitter across the nails.
Which do I prefer? Tough call. But you can really get away with 2 coats of It's Wick on its own. It is rather gritty, so a top coat with thicker consistency, like Seche Vite or Poshe, is recommended. Or 2 coats of any thinner ones.

The fourth polish in this collection, which I did not get, is Fountains O' Roses.

The bottle and brush is identical to the mini bottles used by Girly Bits, which I've done a comparison with OPI minis here.

My only discontent - they only come in 5ml bottles. So I got a back-up for Silverbells & Cockleshells and It's Wick!
Star Trinkets will not be re-stocking these once they are sold out. And if I'm not mistaken, Silverbells & Cockleshells is sold out. So if they're calling out to you, head for Star Trinkets and grab them while they are still available. And they're on SALE too for SGD 7.00 each (usual: SGD 8.00). She ships internationally.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, lovelies!

Disclaimer: I am not sponsored/ endorsed by any of the above-mentioned companies. All opinions expressed are my own, and will always be. All products, with the exception of Ulta3 Black Satin (gifted by Kate of LacquerCareFactor) were purchased by me.

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