Monday, October 4, 2010

K2K's Drugstore happened.

I have insomnia. I've had it all my life. In the last year or so I've found some drugs that work beautifully, helping me to sleep at night without being habit-forming. However, if I miss the time I need to take them, I just skip it because taking my pills late makes it hard for me to get my booty up for work in the morning - consequently I get no sleep.

Such a sleepless night occurred recently, and I had this itch - nay, urge - to buy polish. I had secretly been lusting after a couple of drug store beauties, but I didn't want to stray from my very strict "brand rule". (Created to limit my spending, and, more importantly, so all the bottles look pretty and uniform in their little box...Yeah.) I broke down - for the first time, really - and drove around the town(s) like a madwoman.

Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear Mystic Lilac:

(in normal light)

(washed out, but you can see the green shimmer nicely here)

Murky lavender with a very interesting green shimmer. Pretty, unique, but it might be a little too "My Little Pony" for me? I know its really popular, and I can see why, but I'm not totally feeling it for some reason. I honestly thought this would be my fav of the bunch.

Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear Purple Gala:

(two-finger swatch!)

(check out how glittery this is - wow!)

Dense but fine purple and gold glitter in a purple base. Totally not me, but kind of appealing and definitely fun. The fine grain of the glitter makes this one much more wearable, but like ML, it also reminds me of the days of Lisa Frank and I'm not sure if I can pull it off!

Maybelline Express Finish Gray-T Glamour:

(OK I swapped for this one - I went to like 4 drugstores this fateful night trying to find it. I was in a frenzy of rage.)

I've been looking for a good grey, and I had high hopes for this one. While I do like it - and I really like that it has a little secret shimmer - it is probably a little too blue-toned for my taste. (Keep in mind everything turns bluer on me...I was hoping it would look gorgeous like it did on Adrienne here, but no dice.) This will stay in my arsenal until a better grey comes along.

Drugstore binge verdict? Meh. I know I can't judge all drugstore polishes by these 3, but the brushes on both brands annoyed me - not the brushes themselves, but the wands pick up so much product, making it difficult to get the right amount of polish onto your nail. Also, even though I used my normal base coat/top coat combos, my Gray-T Glamour full mani chipped on day 2. Lamesauce.

This kind of feels like the morning after a night out. I drank too much, ate greasy food, and now I've woken up and I'm not sure if I regret the whole thing, even if it was fun. I figured, for a couple bucks each (I think the Xtreme Wears were $3 a pop?), I could try them out, and if I fell in love, fab - if not, then I can just swap them or give them to someone and I'll still have gotten my moneys worth. Still, I'm not sure I'm going to do this ever again...I feel a little full and bloated.

What do you think of my drugstore binge? Do you have a 'brand rule' or any rule you stick to in order to limit your spending?


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Lucy said...

Unfortunately I don't stick to any budget or have brand loyalty. This weekend was one of those bloated weekends for me also. My girlfriend was going to the drugstore and I asked her to pick up a few polishes. I gave her my debit card and a list. I didn't have too much on that list. Well she called and told me all the different polishes at Rite Aide and I caved and said get them all. She bought all of the latest Sally Hansen Salon collection. WetnWild has new polishes. They are so bad since there 99 cents. None of them were on sale! Good thing I like all of the shades. I bought these Xtreme Wear polishes a few weeks ago. I haven't worn them yet. I like them all on you. You can pull off the glitter.

Kathy said...

I just can't bring myself to buy polish costing more than $5 unless it is BOGO half or free (i.e., Sally Hansen). So, I've been lemming for OPI, Essie, and RBL for quite a while. I checked out Ulta Saturday and they had Essie BOGO half...BUT, all the polishes I liked were gone. :-( So to justify buying OPI, Essie, or RBL it is going to have to be a very special day--my B-Day, Christmas, or me passing my final two exams for my CGFM certification.

Ivan McK said...

That grey looks great...although, I see your point about the tinge of blue. I also really like the lilac....looks adult to me (the "My Little Pony" comment was priceless). Hopefully, you'll get some sleep next time, but if not I know we can look forward to another great "binge" post. :-)


Grace said...

The dark purple almost looks like a foil in that pic. It's very pretty.

I just can't do Maybelline polishes. I've been burned too many times in the past with their consistency, application and wear, that my collection is Maybelline free and will likely stay that way. I have one Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear. It's OLD. I think it's called Music Note? It was my first navy shimmer, and it's pretty, but very sheer and so I have to layer it over something else. I think Bruccis and the new Sally Hansen Complete Manicure polishes are the only "drug store" brands I have anymore (drug store in quotes because Duane Reade drug stores in NYC actually carry OPI and Essie).

My stash is mostly OPI, Essie and China Glaze, with a few RBLs and other brands in the mix. I wish it were more organized, but there's no way my husband is going to tolerate me purchasing a Helmer or anything like it. Our apartment is tiny, so there's no place to put it, and I'd rather not draw any extra attention to the amount of polish I buy. Right now they are sorted by color into 3 clear storage boxes... which are bursting at the seams.

Re: gray polishes - I love SH Gray by Gray, but it is pretty blue toned for a gray polish. So far China Glaze Recycle is my favorite gray, but I've got CND Asphalt waiting to be worn, so we'll see.

ggggg said...

Maybelline polishes chip on me within HOURS of application. I just can't buy them no matter what the color.

On the other hand, SH Xtreme Wears are long lasting for me. I have some really beautiful shades and they are fantastically cheap when on sale (or even when they are not for that matter)as I am on an extremely unbelieveably tighter than tight budet - which is about $1 a month.

I think the Sally Hansens look great on you. Give them another try!

Hook Prism Power said...

I've had so much bad luck with drugstore polishes I just avoid them. And I know what u mean about bottles looking pretty and even so I'm kind of a brand whore myself...

Anonymous said...

I used to have brand loyalty (mainly just OPI), but have started branching out after seeing soo many gorgeous polishes on blogs. I've found some keepers and found some duds too along the way. I bought the new Maybelline fashion week polishes, but they were soo bad (bad brushes, bad formula, and bad wear) I didn't even blog about them and just returned them. :(

Apriltini said...

Purple Gala looks great on you!

I buy whatever looks good if I don't already have a similar color. The most expensive polish I ever bought was MAC's Blue India and don't regret it one bit. I'd have trouble buying anything more expensive than that.

TropicalChrome said...

No brand loyalty here...just some disloyalty, as in there are a few brands I try very hard not to buy for various reasons. But a color I fall in love with that is unlike anything I already have trumps almost everything (but the love has to be commensurate with the price, which for certain brands all but rules them out).

I'm sorry people are having such issues with Maybelline, because I find they're one of the sturdiest, longest lasting drugstore brands on me. I have Pretty In Purple (took me 4 drugstores to find it!) on my toes with no base or top coat, and it's still just about perfect. I guess different brands work differently on different people!

The Phalanges Friend said...

I don't really have brand only hard and fast rule is no buying from companies that test on animals. And I do have a little rule about money..if it's $10+, then it better be some magical life-altering ish if it's coming home with me.
But outside of those two rules, nope...I buy whatever warms the cockles of my heart, whether I have to order it online or buy it in a crackhouse.

Incidentally, I did cave on the Maybelline FW polishes, (they test on animals) and I liked them. The formula wasn't the best, but it wasn't bad either. It's so funny how the same polish doesn't work for some people and works for others.

In any case, I hope you keep Purple Gala. It looks amazing on you!

kittytokaren said...

@Lucy - Haha you totally went bananas!! Love it.. And thanks for saying you like these on me - I dunno what it is, but I'm not super super into any of them.

@Kathy - Yay someone else with rules!! We have the opposite system though - I don't limit price, more like quantity is very limited. (I have an embarassingly small stash for a blogger.) I don't pay retail for hardly anything. I either swap for it, get it in a big sale, wholesaler, etc. OPI for $8.50 a pop?! Yikes...

@Ivan McK - Hehee glad you liked the My Little Pony comment!! I don't think I'll be bingeing again any time soon...

@Grace - Purple Gala is almost a foil - the glitter is so fine it like melts together...That makes no sense. The way you talk about Maybelline is like me with China Glaze! I wasn't impressed with the quality of any of these polishes to be honest. My collection is all OPI, Essie, Chanel, and a couple randoms. I'll be saving my $$ for those from now on :)

@ggggg - Ugh yeah the chipping was annoying. And I think I will try Mystic Lilac out again! Thanks!! :)

@Let them have polish - I am such a brand whore...ugh. But whatever, we like what we like, right?

@Mocha Mish Mash - Along your brand diverse journey what are the winners that you have found?? I'm curious because I'm such a n00b when it comes to brands outside of OPI, Essie or Chanel.

@Apriltini - Thank you!! Blue India was gorgeous and I've yet to see a polish like it, so I think your splurge was a well-placed one. :)

@TropicalChrome - Haha I like "brand disloyalty". Describes my relationship with China Glaze perfectly. It's always amazing to me how different brands react differently to different people. I don't think its fair to judge a whole brand by one polish, but Maybelline has a couple minus points in my book after this....

@ChaosButterfly - Do you know of anywhere that says explicitly which products are and are not tested on animals??? I would love to stick to cruelty free polishes, but the lists I've found are strange. For example Essie - one of my fav brands - didn't test on animals. But now they are owned by L'Oreal which does. I'm sure they aren't changing their production system so the polishes won't be tested on animals, but Essie is now listed as non cruelty-free...its dizzying and I'd appreciate any extra info!!!! (Also LOL @ buy it in a crackhouse!!!!!)


Sandi said...

Pixiwoo recently posted two entries about their efforts to discover who is and who isn't using animal testing (9/14/10 and 9/21/10). Apparently, it appears some companies (L'Oreal being one of several they listed) proudly claim that their products (as in finished products) are not tested on animals but refuse to provide info about whether their separate components are being animal tested by their suppliers. That silence seems deafening and damning to me.

I'm not brand loyal either although I have a lot of ChG and would have a lot more CND had I found them before they torpedoed their core line (I will not pay what they want for their downsized, overpriced 'Color & Effects' line, polish altering top coats are easily found in every brand). I didn't realize it until Grace mentioned it but all my Maybelline polishes (save one) went to Zoya heaven this summer. Guess that says something, lol.

I don't think the Mystic Lilac looks My Little Pony, I seem to remember those as being more of a conversation heart lavender. It's too bad you don't care for ChG. Purple Gala makes an gorgeous gradient with Bogie and Swing Baby from the VV collection. It looks like it could have been their love child.

My test for expensive polishes is 'Do I really want this more than 3 or 4 less expensive polishes and is there a reasonably close dupe out there?'. I doubt I'll ever own a Chanel since I've never seen one that really grabs me (that's still available, some of the old ones are a different story but will remain lemmings forever...three figures for a polish is absolutely out of the question for me), other than that, my budget is more about my willpower (weak) then my wallet.

Zara said...

I would say your "breakdown" was definitely worth it! :) I've never been brand loyal...I probably have more OPIs and Sally Hansens than any other brand, but not by a whole lot.

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