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Green and Brown Water Marble!

Hi folks!

THE POLISH INFLUENZA IS MOVING. CLICK HERE TO BE REDIRECTED.

I hope that all of my US readers had a fantastic Thanksgiving, and that all of my Jewish readers are having a fantastic Hannukah! The holiday season is all about bringing family and friends together in celebration, and it was wonderful seeing my extended family last night. I’m so thankful for all of the wonderful people I have in my life, and I’m most certainly thankful for the support I’ve gotten since starting The Polish Influenza. You all are amazing, and I can’t thank you enough for the amazing feedback I’ve gotten. I hope you’ll continue to enjoy my nail reviews and designs through the holiday season and into the new year!

For Thanksgiving weekend, I wanted to do a water marble in order to bring some festivity to my hands. I recently picked up Essie’s Shake Your $$ Maker, a bright green, from Walgreens for $4 (a bargain for Essie, I know), so I knew I wanted to incorporate it into the design. I thought that a dark, coffee brown would go well with the green, so I settled on Rue Beauté 063. Unfortunately, I soon found out that Shake Your $$ Maker would not spread in the water. I still wanted to use it, though, so I devised a plan.

I painted my nails with a base of Ulta’s Snow White, and then painted two coats of Shake Your $$ Maker overtop. Once that dried, I marbled 063 and OPI Topcoat in the water, so that the clear part of the marble would show the green. It worked wonderfully, and I’m super happy with the result! Pictures below are with OPI topcoat sealing the design.

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I am so happy with this design, I especially love the green! What do you think of the design? And what are you doing this holiday weekend? Taking advantage of any of the nail polish Black Friday sales (Zoya has some AMAZING deals on their website!)? Let me know in the comments below!

~Beth~

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Fall 2013 Polish Comparisons and Swatches!

Hi everyone!

I’m back! I’ve been majorly busy this week and have not had the time nor energy to even think about blogging. I missed swatching and sharing my lacquers with you, so I’m super glad to be back (and super glad my crazy schedule has FINALLY calmed down again!) I should be back to my normal posting schedule from this point forward!

Today I’m going to be showing you some of my favorite fall nail polishes, and some dupes I’ve found. Not all polishes from this post are from a fall 2013 collection (though most are), instead, they’re just colors I like to wear in the winter! My goal is to provide you with an inexpensive alternative to some of the more high end polishes (though sometimes, you have to splurge!) It’s also to help weed through my nail polish collection…. So let’s get started!

Essie For the Twill of it v. Color Club Port-folio v. Wet n’ Wild Gray’s Anatomy 

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Well, it’s pretty obvious: no dupes here. Especially not the Wet n’ Wild- it’s really sheer and nowhere near the same as the deep, grayed out base of the Essie. Port-folio gets closer to Essie, but it’s a much redder purple, and has a stronger green duochrome, whereas FTTOI has green, pink, blue, gray, silver, and more. I couldn’t recommend one over the other, so they’re all worth it in my book!

NOTE: OPI’s Peace, Love, and OPI (not owned) is a completely spot-on dupe of For the Twill of it. You only need one or the other in your collection.

Zoya Giovanna v. Sephora by OPI Mermaid to Order

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While these two are close, they’re not dupes. Giovanna is a much deeper color than Mermaid, and Mermaid is much more metallic than Giovanna, which causes more brushstroke issues. Giovanna also has a more green base than the bluish Mermaid. They are close enough that you don’t really need both, and if I had to recommend one, I’d recommend the Zoya, because it’s just a better, more workable formula.

Essie Tart Deco v. Wet n’ Wild Blazed v. Sephora by OPI How Cute is That?

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How Cute is That? is the oddball of the bunch- it’s got a shimmer in its base and is a much cooler coral tone than the others. It’s also a lot sheerer than the other two, so I’m not really a big fan. Blazed is a bit cooler, darker, and more jelly-like than Tart Deco, but besides that, they’re pretty similar. Depending on how bright you want your coral (Tart Deco is definitely more eye-searing than Blazed), either would make a good choice (though Wet n’ Wild is $0.99, and Essie is $7.99).

Zoya Sarah v. Pink Ice 069

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Definitely no dupes here, despite them looking somewhat similar in the picture. Sarah dries much smoother than 069, and is much warmer and more red-based than the blue-based 69. Sarah also has a gorgeous gold shimmer in it that 069 lacks. Zoya wins hands down here.

Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Nightwatcher v. Rue Beauté 043

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These two are pretty much spot on. In person, there’s a slight difference in that Nightwatcher is more black than 043, but honestly, it’s so subtle that either gives the same effect. I’d recommend Rue Beauté for the $3.99 price tag, but the Sally Hansen most definitely has the best brush and formula. It’s up to you!

Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear Supernova v. NYC Sparkle Top Coat

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They look pretty similar in the picture, but NYC definitely is different from its Sally Hansen counterpart. NYC has a lot of silver and blue glitter mixed into a semi-pink base, while the Sally Hansen has pink glitter as the dominant color. Both are less than $3, so it’s really up to you which you prefer. I personally pick NYC because you don’t have to place any of the glitter, whereas Sally Hansen can be a bit fickle.

Do you have any suggestions for more comparisons in the future? I can’t promise I can do all of them (some polishes are just too expensive to get my hands on at the moment), but if I have the polishes available to me, I’d love to do a comparison. Let me know what you’d like to see in the comments!

~Beth~


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Nail Art- Fall Stamping!

Hi guys!

Finally Friday. It couldn’t come soon enough, this week has been insane. I can’t wait to finally get some sleep! I’m going out to a (post) Halloween party tonight, so my post today will be brief. But hopefully, what it lacks in length it will make for in creativity! So let’s get started!

Remember when I reviewed the Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure fall 2013 trios a little while back? I commented that I couldn’t wait to stamp with Gold Roses, that delicious coppery shade I swooned over. Well, that time to stamp is now. I started by painting my nails with Rue Beauté 063, a lovely dark brown that screams hot chocolate and warmth. It’s amazing on its own, but it was just begging for more. So I took Konad Stamping plate M-60 and used the paisley design (shown below) to create the design.

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I painted the plate with Gold Roses, scraped off the excess, picked it up on the stamper, and BAM instant nail art. I’m so pleased with how the design turned out! Pictures below are without topcoat.

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I love this color combination. It looks vintage to me. The pattern came out so well! I actually did this design on one of my best friends, Tory, recently as well, with a color combo of Aeropostale Live Love Dream in Key Lime Pie and Essie’s For the Twill of it. Here’s her design!

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Artificial, indoor light

Isn’t she a great hand model, too?! Which of these color combos was your favorite? Let me know in the comments!

~Beth~

 


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MOTD- Essie “The Lace is On”

Hiya!

Whew, has it been a busy day. That seems to be my M.O. recently- I’m always busy doing something. It’s tiring, but I like being on the go. It’s much more exciting than just sitting around!

Today I have a gorgeous polish to show you from Essie’s fall 2013 “For the Twill of it” collection. I know I’m a bit late showing these fall polishes, but hey, better late than never, right? I actually used this color recently in my cotton candy water marble, but I’ve never shown it on its own. The Lace is On (the color du jour) is a deep purple/magenta metallic. It’s almost blackened in some light on the nail, which adds a great 3D depth to the manicure. But there’s also some subtle pink shimmer running through the polish, as well. It’s definitely a stunner. Formula wise? Um… definitely not a fan. First of all, the brush seems to be really stiff. I’ve never had that problem with an Essie polish before, so I have to wonder if it’s just a bad bottle. The polish was also kinda gloopy and hard to apply (which you can tell by my swatch pictures). It’s pretty uneven and kinda patchy, even after the second coat, and it’s so thick I wouldn’t want to apply a 3rd. It’s a shame, because the color itself is such a stunner. Pictures below are 2 coats of The Lace is On, no topcoat.

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I wanted to hide some of the imperfections of the polish, so I decided to layer a glitter over it. I picked OPI’s Lights of Emerald City, which is a matte white square glitter with iridescent small square glitters interspersed. I’ve reviewed it before, here. I really like the combo. Pictures below are one coat of LOEC over 2 coats of TLIO.

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I like how the iridescent squares look firey red against the magenta base of the Essie polish. So, I guess all in all, it is a win-manicure today. Have you had the same issues with The Lace is On as I have? Let me know in the comments.

Essie polishes retail for between $7-$9 a bottle, and can be found at most drugstores, beauty supply stores, and on their website, here.

~Beth~


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NYC In a New York Color Minute Topcoats Review and Swatches

Press Sample

Hi everyone!

Recently, with my busy schedule, I have not had the time to do my usual nail art on my nails. There just isn’t time between schoolwork, extracurriculars, and work to take time out of my day for an artistic manicure. It’s disappointing, because there’s nothing I like more than having an intriguing design on my nails. I’m not the kind of person who likes to wear a “plain” manicure (though there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that!) Fortunately, the new NYC In a New York City Special Effects Topcoats provide a quick and easy element of pizzazz to any  manicure, in a flash!

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Today, I have two “effects” to show you: the Sparkle Topcoat, and the matte topcoat called Matte Me Crazy. Both come in 0.33 fl. oz. bottles, which should last for PLENTY of manicures. Each has a thin application brush for precision, which especially helps in the glitter placement of the Sparkle topcoat. I was so excited when these came in the mail, so let’s get to the review!

The Sparkle topcoat is a small blue and pink hex glitter mixed with a very fine silver glitter, all in a sheer pink base. It looks very similar to Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear’s Supernova in the bottle, but Supernova isn’t nearly as glitter-dense as this NYC beauty, and Supernova doesn’t have a pink base, either- it’s base is clear. Since the base of the polish is pink, I thought it would look best over other pink polishes (though I also wanted to see it over a blue since there is blue glitter in the polish itself). The colors I chose to test the Sparkle topcoat with are below:

From thumb to pinky: Ulta "Fuchsiamania", Love and Beauty "Pink", Claire's "Hot Stuff", NYC "Empire State Blue", Revlon Scented Parfum "Cotton Candy"

From thumb to pinky: Ulta “Fuchsiamania”, Love and Beauty “Pink”, Claire’s “Hot Stuff”, NYC “Empire State Blue”, Revlon Scented Parfum “Cotton Candy”

Then, I applied one coat of Sparkle topcoat over all of them…

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Holy glitter Batman! I love this over all of these combos except over Hot Stuff. I think the base is just too coral-y for the cooler pink and blue to really stand out. Now, over Revlon Cotton Candy, this glitter is divine! I also love how the pink is played up over a blue polish base. I can’t wait to experiment with more color combos! Overall, the glitter requires minimal placement, if any at all, and looks great in one coat, though, the more coats you add, the more of a “punch” you’ll give your nails! Formula was nice, not too thick or thin. Love this!

Matte Me Crazy I will admit I was dubious about. I have an Ulta matte topcoat that I got for about $10 in a set of 4, and I really hate it. It turns my nails satin, not matte at all- the shine still peaks through. So when I found out this polish was under $2 at drugstores, I really had my doubts. Nonetheless, I decided to give it a whirl. To fully test it, I picked some really shiny base colors to layer it with:

From thumb to pinky: Fresh Paints "Dragon Lady", Revlon "Scandalous", OPI "A Woman's Prague-ative", Love and Beauty "Peacock", Essie "For the Twill of it"

From thumb to pinky: Fresh Paints “Dragon Lady”, Revlon “Scandalous”, OPI “A Woman’s Prague-ative”, Love and Beauty “Peacock”, Essie “For the Twill of it”

All are super pretty on their own, but let’s see what mattifying them with Matte Me Crazy does…

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Um, wow. Just wow. I have no words. THIS IS FANTASTIC. Look how matte they all got! I love it over Love and Beauty Peacock because it really brings out the subtle purple duochrome of the polish (which my camera refused to pick up on, but I promise it’s there in real life). And please, do NOT get me started on how much I love Matte Me Crazy over Revlon Scandalous. It really emphasizes the pink hex glitters against the black jelly background. I really love every single one of these pairings! Formula-wise, Matte Me Crazy is pretty identical to Sparkle Topcoat, easy to apply, not too thick or thin, and super fast drying because of its matte nature. A real winner, easily beats Ulta as my favorite topcoat of all time.

I’m in awe at both of these polishes. They seriously blew me away, and far exceeded my expectations of a drugstore brand. They’re worth every penny (and they don’t cost that many pennies, either!) Applause to NYC, you very well might have made me a matte lover. And that is not an easy task to do.

So what do you think of these two special effect polishes? Will they be making their way into your stash in the near future? And are you a fan of nail art? Let me know in the comments!

NYC polishes retail for $0.99-$1.99 a bottle, and can be found at drugstores, Target, and on their website, here.

~Beth~

Product featured in this post was sent to me for review by a brand representative. For more information, please see my Disclosure Policy.


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Friday Fun Nail Art- Cotton Candy Water Marble!

Hi all!

It’s Friday, Friday, gotta get down on Friday… sorry for that, I’m just so glad this week is over! SUCH a relief! I hope you all have fun plans for this weekend, I have a 6 hour rehearsal for my school’s fall play tomorrow! Long, but I love the cast, so it’ll be a great time!

It’s been awhile since I’ve done nail art, so I decided to get back in the swing of things today and try my hand at a water marble design! I knew I wanted some brighter colors to counteract how gray it has been outside this week, and Essie’s The Lace is On from the fall 2013 “For the Twill of it” collection seemed like a great polish to start with! One of my favorite color combinations of all time is pinks/purples and blues/turquoises, so I decided to pair the beautiful purple sparkle of The Lace is On with Zoya’s Giovanna, which is from their fall 2013 “Satins” collection, and is a deep, rich green-based teal. I decided to mellow out the sparkles of both of those polishes with a minty creme, and Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear’s Mint Creme was the perfect color to complete the trio. I swirled them around in lukewarm tap water and got the design you see below! Pictures below are with NYC’s In a NYC Minute topcoat.

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What do you think of this color combination? Are you a fan of water marbling? Let me know in the comments below!

I love creating nail art like this, it’s easy and fun, and it impresses everyone who sees your nails! If you need an easy show stopper, this is the technique for you! Just make sure you tape your cuticles before dipping your fingers in the water, or you’ll get polish EVERYWHERE! Tape will help reduce the mess.

I’m currently taking suggestions- what would you like to see me do for nail art in the future? Please give me feedback so I can give all of you amazing readers what you want. I strive to make this blog enjoyable to a large audience, so don’t hesitate to let me know what I’m doing right and wrong (in a nice way, of course!). Once again (I say this ALL THE TIME), I love you all, and thank you for your continued support!

~Beth~


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MOTD- Essie “For the Twill of it”

Hi ladies!

HAPPY FRIDAY EVERYONE!!! We did it, we all survived! To celebrate, I have a fantastic polish to share with you today! It’s Essie’s For the Twill of it from the Fall 2013 collection. I’ve wanted this polish for FOREVER and I finally buckled down and just decided to get it. I kept telling myself I had sufficient dupes of it (I’ll make sure to have a comparison post later!), but the more I looked at my dupe polishes and FTTOI, the more I realized that I needed this Essie gem in my collection. And now that I have it, I have no regrets!

For the Twill of it is a chameleon of a color. It’s purple in the bottle, but deep in a gray way, like the sea right after a storm. It flashes between a teal-green, a pink, and a blue depending on the way the light hits it. I don’t think it’s possible for this polish to ever look quite the same twice because of the extreme duochrome. It’s actually quite opaque, despite the general tendency for polishes like this to be sheer. It’s also pretty thick for a polish like this, though still workable. The most common comparison for FTTOI is OPI’s Peace Love and OPI, from the fall 2013 San Francisco collection. I unfortunately do not own this polish, but from what I’ve seen, they’re essentially dead-on dupes. I really love this polish though. I used 2 coats for the pictures below!

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Sorry that this post is so picture heavy, but it was necessary to show off the multi-faceted color of the polish!

So what do you think of this stormy purple gray polish? Are you a fan of the color flashes? Let me know in the comments below!

Essie polishes generally retail for between $7-$9 a bottle, and can be found at most drugstores, beauty supply stores, and on their website, here.

~Beth~


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On Wednesdays We Wear Pink- Essie “Splash of Grenadine”

Hi everyone!

Today, I have a color for you that’s screaming for summer! How fitting, since today’s weather sure feels like summer, at least here (it’s 86 degrees today!). Regardless of the season, it’s a gorgeous bright polish that will satisfy your pink cravings, so let’s get started!

Essie Splash of Grenadine is from the 2010 Resort collection, and it is a hot magenta creme. It does lean a little purple in some lights, but I think it’s still pink enough to qualify for my Wednesday post. Consistency-wise, I’d probably call this formula a “crelly”, since it’s most definitely a creme, but it’s squishy enough to be a jelly as well. Best of both worlds! It’s a bit of a sheer color, but can be built to full opacity in 3 coats. It also dries pretty quickly, so it’s not a problem to do multiple coats. It is somewhat thin, so be careful not to flood your cuticles, but with a little patience, this polish applies beautifully! It’s also SOOO shiny! Pictures below are 3 coats of Splash of Grenadine, no topcoat.

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Sorry that the second picture is slightly blurry, but the color is still very true to life.

So what do you think of this bright magenta? I think it reminds me of raspberry sherbet, it looks like a great, fruity treat! Let me know in the comments if you like Essie pinks like this one!

Essie polishes can be found at most drugstores (like Walgreens, RiteAid, etc.) beauty supply stores (like Ulta) and on their website, here.

~Beth~


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31DC2013 Day 20- Water Marbled Nails!

Hi ladies!

¡Hola chicas!

I cannot believe it’s already day 20 of this challenge! I haven’t missed a day yet! I hope you guys are enjoying my designs so far, because I’m having so much fun making them! Your support has certainly been amazing!

¡No creo que ya sea día 20 de este desafío! ¡Todavía no me he saltado un día! Espero que todas las personas les encanten mis diseños, porque me gusta mucho hacerlos. Su apoyo me ayuda mucho 🙂

Since fall officially begins tomorrow (YAY sweater weather!) I felt inspired to use fall colors in my design. I started with a base of, what else, 1 coat of Sinful Colors Snow Me White. After that dried, I gathered my colors for the design. The colors I chose are as follows:

Si otoño empieza mañana, quiero usar colores del otoño en mi diseño. Empecé con una basa de Sinful Colors Snow Me White. Después, conseguí mis colores por el diseño. Los colores que elegí son:

OPI I Knead Sour Dough  (burnt burgundy-pink) (café-rosa)

Fresh Paints Dragon Lady (sparkly green) (verde con brillos)

Essie Tart Deco (hot coral) (coral brillante)

Rue Beauté 004 (dark brown) (marrón oscuro)

I tried a new water marble technique today. Instead of drawing lines in the polish when it was on the water, I swirled the polish. I really like how it turned out! The color combination really reminds me of an autumn pumpkin! Pictures below are with OPI topcoat.

Probé una técnica de water marble hoy. En vez de dibujar líneas en la esmalte cuando está en el agua, me la arremoliné en círculos. ¡Me gusta el diseño final! La combinación de los colores es similar a una calabaza. Imágenes son de OPI Topcoat.

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I love how my design turned out today! Water marble really isn’t a challenge for me, I do it really often, so I wanted to try the new technique to make it something new. I hope you like it!

Me gusta mucho este diseño hoy. Water marble no es un desafío para mi, porque me gusta hacerlo muchas veces. Pues, quería probar la técnica nueva para crear algo nuevo. ¡Espero que les guste!

If you love this look, make sure to share it on social media! I always appreciate your support 🙂

Si le gusta este look, por favor, compártalo en Facebook, Twitter, y otras redes sociales. Me gusta su apoyo 🙂

Tomorrow starts the “inspired by…” part of the challenge. Come visit tomorrow to see what I come up with!

Mañana empieza los “inspired by…” parte del desafío. ¡Visíteme mañana para ver que diseño!

31DC2013

CLICK HERE TO VIEW OTHER NAIL ARTISTS’ WATER MARBLE NAIL DESIGNS!!!

~Beth~


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Essie Winter 2013 Collection: Shearling Darling and Pink About It

Hi all!

Today I have for you the press release for Essie’s Winter 2013 collection: Shearling Darling! These rich, luxurious colors conjure up images of sitting around the fireplace with a warm cup of cocoa, enjoying the warmth of the fire and the holiday season. At least the colors do that for me! There are 6 gorgeous shades in this collection, and most look like they’re going to be shimmery and gorgeous (which I love for the holiday season). Here are some of the press release photos below!

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Here are the names of the colors!

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Here are my descriptions of the colors!

Shearling Darling: a rich, maroon creme perfect for the holdays

Toggle to the Top: a subtle red glitter that sparkles like even the brightest of Christmas lights

Sable Collar: a deep, burgundy-purple shade that glows subtly on the nail

Parka Perfect: a gorgeous navy creme that conjures images of a winter night

Mind Your Mittens: a frosty grey-blue shimmer that looks like shining fresh snow

Warm & Toasty Turtleneck: a warm lilac creme that counteracts the coldness of the winter season

I really like this collection, guys! I think Essie has really outdone themselves for this collection. I cannot wait to see what these colors look like on the nail! I’m wondering if Parka Perfect will be a dupe of either Essie School Boy Blazer from the For the Twill of it collection fall 2013, or of OPI Incognito in Sausalito from the fall 2013 San Francisco collection. I also think that Sable Collar could be very similar to OPI I Knead Sourdough from the San Fran Collection. Hopefully I’ll have swatch comparisons soon!

The other collection Essie is releasing this winter is a pink polish duo called Pink About it, in support of breast cancer research. The two colors in this collection are Pink About it, a subtle pink holo, and Pink Works, a lighter pink that glows subtly red. Here are some press release photos!

Right: Pink About it Left: Pink Works

Right: Pink About it
Left: Pink Works

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The Shearling Darling collection is scheduled to be released at salons, beauty supply stores, and drugstores in October 2013, and the Pink About it collection should be released in September 2013, but hey, we can always hope for sooner! Essie polishes generally retail for $8, and you can find out all about the brand on their website, here.

~Beth~