Posts tagged ‘Uslu Airlines’

Tonal play with new-to-me H&M

When I received my long-awaited H&M parcel today, my intent was indeed to play … but gee, did this turn out to be a lot of work!

Perhaps it was ill-fated from its inception — none of the varnishes and only a few of the eye shadows shown here were the ones I had chosen in my original, never-arrived order, placed way before Thanksgiving. By the time I re-placed the order (for which I am *still* awaiting a refund), the original shades I had ordered were no longer available — they had sold out.

I’m more than content with what I’ve received, but things started going awry from the get-go. My backdrop fell on top of the nail wheel with the four freshly painted H&M chips, so they have more coats than the other 14 chips, in order to remedy the dents.

It was very windy here in Northern California today, which caused me a number of problems, even though I was indoors. First, lack of light (my house is rather gloomy, even though it faces south). Then, there were the bubbles and/or debris appearing from nowhere on the chips. Especially with Giorgio Armani Parma Greige, which when I had used it for a manicure, was an utterly flawless formula! Enormously frustrating. I almost threw in the towel, since the images looked horrendous on my camera viewing screen.

I still don’t think the images I halfheartedly captured do any justice to what I see in person, but I posted anyway, because in the process I learned a lot about each varnish. Some of these I’ve had for years and hadn’t even used yet.

Below are my field notes:

1 – H&M Cloudburst and 4 – H&M Volcanic Mud required a third coat to reach evenness and opacity, whilst 2 – H&M Taiga and 3 – H&M Cobblestones were opaque at two coats. Cloudburst and Volcanic Mud also had, like, dried varnish specks in their more transparent formulae, which were no longer visible after the final third coat. Volcanic Mud is a much more interesting shade than it appears in the bottle, with green-blue undertones somewhere in that medium grey.

I probably should have included Chanel Khaki Vert to compare to the beautiful H&M Taiga (opaque at 2x), but I just grabbed whatever was staring me in the face on one of my varnish shelves. Khaki Vert was tucked in the back of the lineup somewhere. (As an afterthought, I should have included all of the Les Khakis here!)

H&M Cobblestones (opaque at 2x) is more of a neutral taupe with lilac undertones (as I had hoped it would be) — online swatches I referenced show it as a much warmer, yellower-leaning shade, with no cool purple undertone whatsoever.

5 – D&G Jaipur Blue – bliss at two coats. Great brush, colour, smooth formula. Shade is slightly dustier than you see here. This brand is worth every extra shekel you pay.

6 – Giorgio Armani Parma Greige – same as above accolades for D&G, including the dusty comment, although today the chip looked hideous. Debris, bubbles, ugh … only because I’ve used it before for a full mani do I know that it is indeed a thing of beauty.

7 – Chanel Horizon Line – this is a tester bottle, recently purchased in a panic on the auction site at a discount. I knew it was limited edition, but I had no idea back in August it would sell out so quickly. I don’t like the brush or the formula at two coats, same thoughts I had when I first tried Turban (the only one I’ve actually tried of these new Chanel bottles, although I have others). It’s like they’re heavy on plasticizers and that thin brush just wallows in and drags them around. Note to self: test your other new bottle Chanels before acquiring any more. Another thing: does anyone know how OPI Taupe-less Beach stacks up to Chanel New Dawn?

8-11 – Kure Bazaar Chloe, Boyfriend, Khaki, Hipster, all at two coats. Colours are smooth, opaque and pretty, but I don’t reach for these often. They’re touted as safe and natural, but they still smell just as strong and nauseating as the chemical-laden varnishes. I could not imagine using these while pregnant. Plus, on me, they never, ever dry — even on my toes at the height of summer. I must be doing something wrong.

12-13 – YSL Call Me Grey and Fur Green, both at two coats. Call Me Grey’s brush had a few wonky hairs. I left the tolerable wonkies and pulled out the worst offender. Stuff like this bothers me, as M. Saint Laurent’s image should not be allowed to tarnish in even the smallest detail, and it’s too late. A few years ago, when I ordered a Black Opium sample from the faux-luxe website, it never arrived. Then suddenly I received several, one after the other, each bearing a slightly different version of my name on the address label. They must have young marketing interns with no idea of the brand’s heritage in charge of this stuff. Fur Green, on the other hand, was perfection. Love this one.

14-18 – Uslu Airlines MYK, NIM, SBT, ACE, ABS. Perfection in a bottle, all. Two smooth coats. Beautiful brush, excepting SBT — it has the skinny old one. I can no longer purchase these in the U.S.; good thing I made a run while I could, although there are still several I yearn for that I missed. Oftentimes I imagine having to forsake my entire collection and being forced to choose only one brand for keeps. Uslu Airlines would be my choice.

xx blueberry milk tea

In the red — a teaser

Overwhelmed not only me, but my camera!

What a sight, what a task …

Organized by brand.

Once I get my hands on some sticks, I’ll swatch first by brand, then move the sticks around by shade as I have them in my drawer.

Yes, that drawer is on the verge of collapse! 🙂

Can never do these bottles justice.  They’re so much more beautiful in person.

Dior Lucky, Glory, Tie & Dye, Star, Pandore

Chanel Dragon, Coromandel, Lotus Rouge, Barcelona Red

Deborah Lippmann Sexyback, It’s Raining Men, Girls Jessa

Givenchy Carmin Escarpin

Rescue Beauty Lounge Gondoliere

Paul & Joe Annatto, Paprika

The bottom row, above, consists of flashy sparklers:

L’Apogee Be Happy Delicia

OPI You Only Live Twice, Ali’s Big Break

Dance Legend Red Show 06, 07, 09

Estee Lauder Fiery Hot

Shu Uemura x Maison Kitsune # plum glitz

Misa Forgive, Forget, For Me I Will

Uslu Airlines KBJ Kings Canyon

Orly Precisely Poppy

American Apparel Lipstick

Sation Pink Fury, Baron Red

NYC Pink Promenade Crème, Times Square

CQ Pink Candy, Crème Berry, Cardinal

Revlon – Colorstay Delicious, Fearless, Revlon Red

Nails Inc. Festival Hyde Park, Kensington High Street

Barry M Raspberry

SH Insta-Dri Quick Fire, Ablazing!, Sonic Bloom, Rapid Red

SH X-treme Wear Heritage Red

Next up, a brand row-by-row with higher quality photos 🙂

xx blueberry milk tea

More Mavala reds on the way from Canada, and I’ve since realized I forgot to raid my Asian drawer for the above photos …

Dusty surprises ft. Uslu Airlines NIM – Niamey

Am I grey or am I blue? Or greygreen-bluegray? Lol!

Take a gander below:

What say you?

L to R in lineup and on nail wheel:

Essie Parka Perfect
Sally Hansen Miracle Gel Grey Matters

Essie Truth or Flare (bluest of the tribe)
Sinful Shine Blue Suede Shoes

Urban Outfitters Barstool
Uslu Airlines NIM Niamey

All are initially two coats on the nail wheel.

I later added a third to Truth or Flare and Barstool, as they were very sheer formulae in comparison to the others.

(They look and feel like jellies/crellies but haven’t done my homework down computer way re these two…)

Wondering if MAC Blue India and Catrice Big City Life New York would fit here… although they seem like dusty yet definitive blues.

(Doubt I will ever see Blue India and New York in real life…)

Uslu Airlines NIM is such a shade-shifter. At times grey, greygreen, bluegray, dusty bluegreen…

xx dusty blueberry milk tea

Quasi-random beauty shots

*Utterly dazzled, faints*

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This lineup wasn’t what I had intended to show you as the star of the post, but it turned out best, so it got bumped up to first place! 🙂

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Photo belongs to Hanatsuki blog.  Thank you!

I have really tried to get my paws on Smelly varnishes, but Japanese mail and package services will not ship nail varnish out of Japan, in spite of my having successfully navigated the Urban Research web site and managing to fill my online shopping cart with a selection of lovely Smelly bottles.

Grrr…

So I bought Revlon Colorstay Hold ‘Em to tide me over.  In real life, it looks very close to Hanatsuki’s image above.

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Misa Fashionista, Zoya Odette, Revlon Colorstay Hold ‘Em, Barry M Vintage Violet, Peripera PP109

Below, the front part of the above train:

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Dior Lady, Uslu Airlines TXL Berlin Tegel, Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Rush Hour

The two lineups below are what I had initially plucked for this post.

First thing on a Saturday morning, totally spontaneously and completely forgetting about my a.m. exercises and the scads of other things I had planned for the nail café this weekend…

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Chanel Tenderly, OPI Hello Hawaii Ya?, Nails Inc. Regents Row, Morgan Taylor Met My Match

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RBL Forgiveness (they sent me a new bottle to replace the broken but “rescued” one)

EL Insatiable (The varnish to end all varnishes.  I don’t know where my eyeballs were when this came out, but I only recently discovered it and of course had to have it.  I obtained it for a great price on the auction site, from a seller in Germany who sent it to me completely unsecured in a basic file envelope, half falling out of its beaten-up-by-the-international-postal-service box, but still intact and unbroken.  The flimsy unpadded envelope also had “nail polish” listed on the customs label, so I’m relieved and grateful I even have it to show to you here!)

Color Club Shabby Drab.  Been seeing lots of images of this lately and every time I do, I think, gotta get that one…

Of course I already have it, untried among my scads of dusty greyed blurples.

Givenchy Lilas d’Exception.  Truly an exceptional varnish, and difficult to photograph accurately enough to do justice to its beauty.

And below we have the outliers I had originally chosen for the above lineups.

They were either too bright, too blue, too red, too saturated, too dusty, too something to be featured above, yet still all kinds of gorge in their own right.

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Orly Cashmere Cardigan, obtained via swap on good ol’ MUA

Peripera BL608

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Dior Spring, H&M Misty Plum, OPI Planks A Lot

I have swatches, I do!  That’s for Sunday, and it’s still Saturday here on the West Coast of the U.S. 🙂

xx blueberry milk tea

More green (eggs &) spam

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Misa Got It Made in the Shade, Essie Da Bush, SH Miracle Gel Camo Queen, Barry M GHS Olive

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Kure Bazaar Boyfriend.  A rich hippie version of Essie Sew Psyched (which I don’t like, but have a habit of reacquiring and giving away).

So I don’t know why I paid $16 USD for a shade I keep getting rid of in its commoner and more economical incarnation…

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Boyfriend, Dance Legend 420, Colour Alike 442

Colour Alike is an excellent, affordable Polish brand; this came out around the time of Chanel Khaki Vert and Essie Sew Psyched…

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GOSH Lazy Green, Ginger + Liz Sam-Poole Sale, Zoya Dree, Dior Amazonia

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Uslu Airlines ACE Arrecife, Floss Gloss Faded, China Glaze Don’t Get Derailed, Misa Trust Fund

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One must be careful what she wishes for, especially when in the vicinity of a discount retailer.

Just found four items this afternoon that have been on my radar, for $4 USD each.  Essie Vested Interest was one.

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In these batches of green eggs and spam, turns out there isn’t anything quite like her… so good on me!

xx blueberry milk tea

Inspiration: beautiful Japanese disposable chopsticks

Could not wait to pluck the corresponding varnishes from my collection this morning and post these images before embarking on a manicure inspired by two pairs of chopsticks I will never, ever throw away…

In brand alpha order:

American Apparel MacArthur Park

Butter London Tea & Toast

Essie No More Film

Misa Pay Days Are Happy Days

Nails Inc. White Horse Street

OPI A Piers To Be Tan

Peripera GR313

Uslu Airlines ACE Arrecife

xx blueberry milk tea

Box of bonbons, part one

Intended for Valentine’s Day, so a little overdue…

Meanwhile, lunch is served at the café, before we partake in some dessert-like varnishes!

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Baked tofu gratin over Thai jasmine rice.

Other kitchen sink ingredients include uncured pastrami, shaved broccoli stalks and carrot, organic tofu, Japanese kokumaro stew cream, artisanal bacon cheddar cheese, French fleur de sel.

vanilla buttercream

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I was absolutely smitten by these two SH CSM varnishes from the new NYFW collection.

When I brought them home together last week, I had no idea they would be so close to OPI and Essie…

milk bordeaux

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Any idea yet which filling you’re going to choose?

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cherry nut buttercream

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dark choco raspberry heart

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dark soft centers

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Ugh, I’m stuffed!

This post took forever (way past Valentine’s Day, yes?) to put together, and the display of sweets isn’t over yet — I omitted Essie Cashmere Matte Wrap Me Up from the Vanilla Buttercream lineup, so will include her in part two, where I’ll swatch and compare the assortments above.

The Skinfood trio set also deserves its own post and commentary — después de haberme desempalagado (after getting rid of this sickeningly sweet feeling). 🙂

Love,
xx blueberry milk tea