Top Ten glittery polishes and top coats

It’s Top Ten Tuesday time and this week we’re exploring glittery, shimmery polishes and top coats. With holidays and New Year’s this is the perfect time to show off the fun side of nail polish. Even if you don’t wear this to your workplace, these occasions are perfect to shine at all of your parties. I’ve chosen 10 in my collection and all but one are still available but I love it too much not to include it.
1418587443_img_20140309_183616-340x340KB SHIMMER PRISM BREAK – This is a shimmery though not glittery top coat. It’s wonderful for every shade of polish you own so it’s great to own. You can jazz up what you are already wearing with this subtle shimmer. I love it!!
1418587171_the_black_knight_lacquer_11142014BUTTER LONDON THE BLACK KNIGHT – I picked this up during one of Ulta’s BOGO sales and it’s gorgeous. It has a black base and then is loaded with black, pink, blue, and silver glitter. Very deluxe.
1418587012_ice_duo_lacquer_set_11172014BUTTER LONDON DOUBLE TAKE ICE DUO – This is on last call at Butter London. It contains 2 polishes. Bluecoat Nail Lacquer: an opaque, navy shimmer and Leccy Overcoat: a sheer, blue opal fleck overcoat. As striking as Bluecoat is, it’s Leccy that’s the star of the show. The opal fleck is beautiful over so many polishes year round. BL sent this and I instantly bought the red set (Fire) that they were selling last year.*

butter London Leccy top coat

butter London Leccy top coat

1418586852_vinylux-night-glimmerCND VINYLUX NIGHT GLIMMER  CND Vinylux are great polishes because you don’t need a base coat, only their top coat. They last one to two weeks. Night Glimmer is deceiving since it looks like a pretty brown in the bottle but there’s a subtle shimmer once applied.*
1418586802_vinylux-gilded-pleasureCND VINYLUX GILDED PLEASURE  There is no shimmer or glitter in this but it’s a gorgeous color for the holidays. It’s gold – it’s green – it’s brass – it’s gold again. I love the changes of this polish.*
1418586538_img_20140913_125205-180x180KB SHIMMER PINE-ING FOR YULE  Not only is this absolutely gorgeous but it’s KB Shimmer’s 2014 Toys for Tots Charity Polish ($4 of the $8.75 will be donated to Toys for Tots). This is a glitter top coat with evergreen triangle trees and red stars, there’s holographic silver and red glitters in this. It’s a stunner.*

1418586061_arsenic_black_square_4_grandeOCC (Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics) ARSENIC NAIL LACQUER is the true glitter in this group. It’s the most glittery polish I own. It’s New Year’s Eve in a bottle.*

OCC Arsenic

OCC Arsenic

1418585886_5042847609NUANCE GOLDSTONE is the polish I wore last year for New Year’s. A wonderful blogger sent this to me as a gift when I couldn’t find it. I love it because it’s gold but not garish. It’s a satin metallic. It doesn’t exactly fit today’s post but not everyone loves glitter so this is a great alternative.

Nuance Goldstone polish

Nuance Goldstone polish

1396315823_jammy_thumbBUTTER LONDON LOLLY aka JAMMY This polish had two names. When it was sent to me it had the name Lolly but online I believe it was called Jammy. Sadly this is discontinued but if you can find it, grab it. This sparkly red is wonderful. I love Butter LONDON polishes anyway but when you get a color like this it’s even better.*

butter LONDON Stroppy bottle with Lolly nails

butter LONDON Stroppy bottle with Lolly nails

1396315762_stroppy_thumbBUTTER LONDON STROPPY This is an OMG polish. It was in the LOLLY BRIGHT collection like Lolly aka Jammy but luckily this is still available. It’s a full coverage polish with bright purple flaring shimmers in gel-like base. This metallic shimmer polish is one of my all time favorites. *

So there I am – 10 polishes that range from metallic to shimmer to glitter. All gorgeous ones that wear well. Are any of these on your to buy list?  Move on to my fellow nail polish lovers to see what they have to share. — Marcia


*some polishes had been sent for editorial consideration

Lisa’s new and improved top ten primers list

I wrote my original ‘Top ten primers‘ post back in 2010, a few years after my primer obsession began. Finding an excellent primer was life-altering for me because for the very first time my makeup actually lasted all day.  I’ve always had strange skin, products don’t last long on me at all – I put blush on and an hour later, it’s completely gone.  For a long time I thought there was nothing I could do about it – until I found a primer that actually made my makeup (and most happily my blush) last a whole day.  I think I bought every primer on the market for the next few years after that. I have owned and used so many different primers I am ashamed to put a number on it. 

Lisas top ten primersThis list is a long overdue update of my personal choices for the top ten primers – each one is unique, they all have their advantages, and they are all excellent.  Which primer I choose is determined by the condition of my skin that day, my skin tone, and the foundation I am going to use. (A side note – I was astounded by the price increases when I updated them!)

My top ten list is not in any particular order – these are my top favorites, but they are all equal in terms of play time they get.

Kevyn Aucoin The Primed Skin Developer

Kevyn Aucoin The Primed Skin Developer

1.  Kevyn Aucoin The Primed Skin Developer ($68)

The earlier version, called The Sensual Skin Primer, was actually the primer that began my obsession.  I used it one day and could not believe how vibrant and fresh my makeup was 10 hours later. The new version is even better – I use the Normal to Oily one.  The texture has slip but it doesn’t feel extremely silicone heavy.  It dries quickly to a satin finish.  It keeps makeup on like no other.  There are some drawbacks, though – it is an expensive item, so expensive that it hurts to buy it.  I tend to use this on special occasions only to try to make it last as long as possible.  And while I love the hygienic pump bottle, it drives me crazy that I never know how much I have left.  Regardless, I will never be without a bottle – and a back up.

Grand Central Beauty Skin Perfecting Primer

2.  Grand Central Beauty S.M.A.R.T. Skin Perfecting SERUM+PRIMER ($68)

I like to say that the only time I have ever been wrong was that one time I thought I made a mistake.  Unfortunately, in reality I have been wrong on a few more occasions than that…and I was completely wrong about the S.M.A.R.T. Skin Perfecting SERUM+PRIMER.  While it has a slew of cool ingredients, including squalane from brazilian sugar cane, apple, watermelon, lentil, rice and soybean protein, I initially thought it worked better as a serum than a primer…totally incorrect.  This is a kick ass primer.  It keeps makeup looking totally perfect for 12 hours.  Every time I use it I think, “How could I have been so wrong??”

Reviva Labs Makeup Primer

Reviva Labs Makeup Primer

3.  Reviva Labs Makeup Primer ($19.50) This is absolutely one of my favorite primers of all time.  It has silicone, but it isn’t super thick.  I find that it works best if I apply the primer and then let it sit for about three minutes.  It has a slightly wet texture at first that will collide with your concealer and foundation application. If you wait a few minutes it dries down to a beautiful finish that helps concealer and foundation apply and wear perfectly.  It does everything a primer should do:  makes skin super smooth, allows even application of concealer and foundation, and increases longevity.  

Pur Minerals green_primer

4.  Pur Minerals Colour Correcting Foundation Primer in Green ($31):

This is the primer I reach for when I’m broken out.  The green color balances out redness from acne, broken capillaries, and rosacea.  It doesn’t make me look like an alien – the green transforms into a beautiful, even skin tone color.  Less is more with this primer. You don’t need much to neutralize redness and create a perfect canvas for foundation.

OCC Skin Primer

5.  OCC Skin Primer ($27.50):This is a really cool primer.  Not only is it great for the face, but you can also use it as a lid primer for mineral eyeshadows.  It’s unlike most primers.  You HAVE to shake the bottle before squeezing some out – and then be careful when you do, because it has a thin, liquid consistency.  Once applied, wait until it dries because it applies quite wet, but does dry down to a super smooth, satiny finish.  And boy does makeup stick to this stuff!

Paul and Joe Protecting Foundation Primer

6.  Paul and Joe Protective Foundation Primer ($32)

This is, by far, the strangest primer I have ever used.  And I love it.  It has an SPF of 30.  It’s also super watery – it must be properly shaken before squeezing the product out.   It has a very thin consistency that dries down to a satiny finish.  It also has super fine, really tiny microshimmers in it, which gives skin the best natural looking glow.  The primer looks really yellow, but it goes on colorless – aside from the glow.  Makeup lasts and lasts with this primer.  I find that I reach for it when I am using very matte, oil-inhibiting foundations like Clarins Truly Matte Foundation because the microshimmers counteract the flatness.

Cle de Peau Correcting Cream Veil

7.  Cle de Peau Correcting Cream Veil ($76)

I have a love-hate relationship with Cle de Peau.  Some products I adore and will buy despite the exorbitant price tag.  Other products I can’t stand, and I get offended at the price of items that do absolutely nothing for you.  This primer, however, is well worth the price.  At the same time, I get the sample sizes at the counter when I can…they are great for travel and give several weeks of use. This primer is a thick, creamy lotion.  You don’t need a lot of it – a little goes a very long way.  In fact, if you use too much you will get a distinctly white cast to your skin.  Use the right amount and it sinks into your skin nicely, leaving no white or greyish cast.  Skin is super smooth, lines are filled in, and makeup goes on beautifully and lasts all day.  Pores look smaller and it lessens oil production throughout the day.  Get a sample at the counter before investing, but I’ll bet once you try it, you’ll want the full size version.  I love this under cream foundation.

IT Cosmetics Feel the Moment Primer

8.  IT Cosmetics Feel the Moment Anti-Aging Primer Serum ($38)

The Feel the Moment Anti-Aging Primer Serum is a thick, super hydrating primer that makes skin baby smooth.  Ingredients include caviar extract, hydrolyzed collagen, peptides, hyaluronic acid, vitamins A, E, and C, argan and jojoba oils, and avocado.  The serum is in glass jar with a dropper,  and two drops is more than enough to prime and hydrate.  It goes on slightly tacky then dries down to create a perfect canvas for makeup. This is just what I need for perfect makeup when I have dry skin.  I have gone through two bottles of this and am halfway through my third!

Algenist Pore Corrector Anti Aging Primer

9.  Algenist Pore Corrector Anti-Aging Primer ($42)

This primer comes in an opaque airless pump which keeps the product integrity and effectiveness safe and sound.  It does everything a great primer should do – it reduces the look of pores, creates a satin finish for easy makeup application, and it keeps that makeup in place and reduces fading throughout the day.

Ingredients include Alguronic Acid, which ramps up the anti-aging quotient. I am thrilled that over time it actually improves my skin – but I am even more thrilled with the immediate results of perfectly primed skin. And, of course, not looking like a sad clown with melted makeup at the end of the day is a huge plus!! The Pore Corrector Anti-Aging Primer has a beautifully lightweight texture that doesn’t feel heavy on the skin. While liquidy, it dries quickly and truly makes that beautiful canvas you need to happily play with all the rest of your cosmetics art supplies.

Fyrinnae Pixie Epoxy

10.  Fyrinnae Pixie Epoxy ($7)  So this is a bit of a cheat…it’s not a face primer, but it is such a fantastic eye primer I had to put it on the list.  If you like pigment eyeshadows, you need this.  If you have oily lids, you need this.  Heck, it’s only seven bucks…try it out!  A tiny dab makes eyeshadow not only cling to your lids for dear life, it also brings out a vibrancy you never knew the eyeshadow had in the first place.  I think of my Pixie Epoxy as liquid gold.

The biggest difference I notice between my original list from five years ago and the one I have now (beside the price increases!) is the addition of primer/serums.  Primers don’t just prime anymore, they also treat the skin.  Most people probably only need or want one, maybe two different primers.  I happen to be just a *little* obsessive about makeup, so my collection is extreme – but if you are looking for a primer, I am sure you can find something perfect for your needs on this list.

Ok ladies, what is your favorite primer?  Is there another amazing primer out there that I just have to try??  There’s always room for one more!  – Lisa

Top Ten Tuesday – favorite concealers

Every other Tuesday the Top Ten bloggers share items we’d like you to know about. Concealers are something very few of us can live without. As I age it seems that there’s more to conceal. I’m not ready to give up the fight. These are concealers that I own and use all the time. Can you find 10 that you love? — Marcia

1. YSL Touche Eclat – Technically this is not a concealer, it’s a highlighter. But I find that it gives me a lift with its luminizing quality that takes people’s eyes (or my mind) away from the dark circles. Unfortunately the price keeps going up on this but one can last me for a year so the $40 that it costs is more than worth it. I buy and I try every product like this but none seem to compare.

2. IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Concealer – I’ve mentioned this concealer about 254,690 times on Beauty Info Zone. It was a miracle when I first discovered it and it remains a miracle to this day. Absolutely a favorite of mine.

3. IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Corrector Concentrate* – This is the newest concealer from IT Cosmetics and it’s much more heavy duty than the original. It’s actually a “corrector” which you can use to conceal or correct.

4. Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Skin Conceal* –  When I need true concealing then I pull out this OCC Concealer. It’s incredible since it comes in 12 multi-ethnic shades, is paraben free, is cruelty free and is free of all the other nasties. This $20 pot will last you forever since it’s so concentrated. I wear this in Y1 (light yellow based skintone) and in RO (palest red based skintone) though not at the same time.

5. Benefit Fake-Up – When I bought this I had some misgivings. I hadn’t had a lot of luck with Benefit but there was something about it that appealed to me. I ended up using it almost every day this past summer. The outer core is an eye balm with the inner core being the concealer. It’s moisturizing and a double duty product. I probably need more moisturizing now that it’s colder so I should start using it again.

6. Senna Highlight Concealer – As much as I love this Senna Concealer in Lite, I miss the original concealer that got me stuck on Senna – Cameo. Luckily I have some in my possession. The light peach of Cameo counteracts my dark circles. I’ve used up at least 3 of them. Lite is close but not quite peachy enough. Yet it’s a great creamy concealer.

7. Three Custom Colors aka 3CC – This is another concealer that I’ve used for quite a while though I haven’t bought it recently. It’s very creamy and doesn’t settle into my undereye creases. It also can be used as a foundation using a damp sponge and patting it on your skin. On the 3CC website it comes in 10 colors including two very dark shades which is nice for a change.

8. Tarte Smooth Operator* – Tarte’s concealer in stick form is an affordable alternative to Cle de Peau and Le Metier de Beaute in my opinion. They feel and look similar on my eyes yet Smooth Operator won’t hurt your credit card. It’s one of their more full coverage concealers. I’ve been using this so much lately that I’m worried about finishing it which means more shopping (what a hardship!).

9. Tarte Maracuja Creaseless Waterproof Concealer* – Maracuja Concealer was my first Tarte concealer love and I haven’t forgotten it, I just cheat on it at times. I had to buy a backup since I’m so close to finishing my original. I love this creamy liquid for under my eyes especially.

10.  Dior Nude Skin Perfecting Hydrating Concealer – That’s a mouthful but it does what it says. This is a revamp of their original Dior Nude Concealer and this newer one is more hydrating than it used to be. Color and texture are the same so if you loved the original, you’ll love this one more. It was recommended to me by a Nordstrom MA that I trust and she was absolutely right about it.

Well I could go on and on since I haven’t mentioned Dior Skinflash or any of my half dozen MAC Concealers but I decided not to cheat (this time). Have you used any of my Top Ten? Which concealer is your favorite? — Marcia

* items were sent for review
Now it’s time to find out what concealers the other bloggers love and want us to buy!!