Tag Archives: nails

Spring Nails (SS16)

Spring is finally here with temperatures finally increasing and stabilizing.  Out with Fall/Winter vampy shades and in with bright, vibrant, pastel colors for spring.

(Clockwise from Top) Zoya Daisy, China Glaze Light as Air, Zoya Bevin, China Glaze Peachy Keen, China Glaze For Audrey, Zoya Blu, China Glaze Mimosas Before Mani’s, China Glaze Refresh Mint, Formula X Law of Attraction

Zoya Daisy+ (Creme with Glitter)– A pale yellow with light blue shimmer.

China Glaze Light as Air* (Creme) – A light lavender.

Zoya Bevin+ (Creme) – A muted light blueish green .

China Glaze Peachy Keen* (Creme) – A light peachy orange color.

China Glaze For Audrey* (Creme) – A classic and long time fave.  Similar to Tiffany & Co.’s signature blue boxes. 

Zoya Blu+ (Creme) – Pale light blue, similar to a robin’s egg.

China Glaze Mimosas Before Mani’s* (Creme with Glitter)- Bright Orange/Pink with subtle pink glitter.

China Glaze Refresh Mint* (Creme) – Beautiful Mint Green.

Formula X Law of Attraction (Metallic Gitter)- Ever just sit and stare at your nails as the light reflects on it?  Yes, this polish will have you doing that.  Gorgeous blue contrasts a yellow gold tone.

What are your favorite polishes for summer this year?

How to Read Cosmetic Ingredient Labels XLIII

It has been a particularly harsh winter, which has resulted in your hands being dry and rough.  You are ready for spring and want moisturized hands along with it!  You are looking for a high quality moisturizer, so you went to a health food store to explore their products.  You find a hand cream that has 4 ingredients!  There is nothing you cannot pronounce and nothing looks too chemical-ish, but is the product what it seems?  Remember, I am teaching you Label Poise–how to walk the walk, talk the talk, and buy products that meet YOUR standards, whether natural, organic, or safe enough.  For instructions on Label Poise visit our Label Poise page.

The Label


The Ingredients

Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter: Safe!  This ingredient is derived from the nut of the Shea Tree and is used for its moisturizing properties.  (MSDS)

Goat’s Milk: Safe! Goat’s Milk is used in cosmetics for its high moisturizing effects. Goat’s Milk contains various vitamins ((A, B6, B12, E), proteins, beta casein, and triglycerides which give it its moisturizing capabilities. Avoid!  if vegan, vegetarian, or you have a milk allergy. Goat’s Milk is not known to be toxic, nor a skin, eye, or lung irritant in individuals without a milk allergy. (MSDS; MSDS; MSDS)

Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Extract:  Beware! Green Tea extract is used for its antioxidant, antimicrobial, astringent, emollient, skin conditioning, uv absorption, and humectant properites. It is typically used in concentrations not exceeding 2% in leave-on products, and 1% in rinse-off products and are considered safe for use in cosmetics when formulated to be non sensitizing. Green Tea Extract is a slight skin, eye, and lung irritant in pure form.  No information on developmental, reproductive, or teratogenic toxicity available. (MSDS;CIR)

Rose Extract: Safe!/Beware! This ingredient is obtained from Rose buds and petals. It is typically used in concentrations of 5-10% as an astringent, anti-inflammatory, and emollient. This ingredient is not known to be an irritant to skin, eyes, or lungs, nor is it known to be carcinogenic. (MSDS)


Nature’s Pulchritude’s Verdict: 4 ingredients. The Green Tea and Rose extracts are likely in concentrations of less than 5% each and are likely of minimal concern!  Looks like your Label Poise is really developing!

Preview: Exclusive Zoya Mini Trio

In January Zoya ran a promotion that allowed its customers to get 3 exclusive mini polishes with their purchase.  The colors were made specifically for a NYFW collection and are not available for individual purchase.

(L to R) Severine, Anais, Charlott


I wasn’t sure what colors to expect.  My initial reaction was luke warm, however, that may change once I swatch the colors.  The most promising in the bottle are Severine and Charlott.


(L to R) Severine, Anais, Charlott


Severine is a golden olive metallic shimmer.

Anais is a black shimmer.

Charlott is a light cream.


What do you think of the trio?


Check back shortly for swatches!  Thank you for reading!

China Glaze Rodeo Fanatic (Swatches & Review)

Brand: China Glaze
Color: Rodeo Fanatic
Collection: Rodeo Diva Fall 2008


This shade has been in my collection for years, though it has been seldom used. Rodeo Diva is a quintessential fall collection filled with dark, vampy colors–and tons of shimmer! China Glaze has long been one of my favorite polish brands because of the versatility of their color offerings. China Glaze is now big 3 free, though Rodeo Fanatic is not due to age. Rodeo Fanatic is a blue-teal color with gorgeous microglitter shimmer.


The formula of this polish was good. The formula can be slightly runny causing the polish to pool a bit around the cuticle and outer nail bed. The shimmer is even throughout.

.8 Globe

China Glaze Rodeo Fanatic
China Glaze Rodeo Fanatic


This polish applied well. The polish was opaque in 2 coats. The application was not streaky at all and evened out beautifully.

1 Globe



This color is simply gorgeous in direct sunlight as it really showcases the shimmer and depth of the color. The color can fall a bit flat in the shade. It is a great color for fall and the shimmer gives it a different flare than a creme of a similar shade. It is cool toned would complement most skin tones.

.8 Globe


This polish wore pretty well. I did have some minor chipping after a few days of wear, but nothing very noticeable.

.9 Globe



Ingredients: Ethyl Acetate, Butyl Acetate, Nitrocellulose, Propyl Acetate, Tosylamide/Formaldehyde Resin, Isopropyl Alcohol, Tripheryl Phosphate, Trimethyl Pentanyl Diisobutyrate, Ethyl Tosylamide, Stearalkomium Bentonite, Camphor, Stearalkonium Hectorite, Benzophenone-1, Sucrose Acetate Isobutyrate, Phthalic Anhydride/Trimelic Anhydride/Glyrols Copolymer, Diethylhexyl Adenate, Acrylates Copolymer, Sucrose Benzoate, Citric Acid, Dimethicone, Kaolin (China Clay), Silica, [Pigments]

This product is big 3 free, as it contains formaldehyde resin and camphor. The other ingredients are typical of what you would find in a nail polish and some are likely toxic to the lungs and nervous system, which is not at all surprising considering it is nail polish. It is best to polish nails in a well ventilated area and do not inhale over an open bottle.

.6 Globe

Shimmers are not my ‘thing.’ It has taken me some time to truly appreciate this color. I bought this color not too long after it was released and have maybe worn it 3 times. I am pretty critical of shimmers but this one is a nice shade. It is a really pretty shade and quality product and is big 3 free.

4.1/5 Globes 

How to Read Cosmetic Ingredient Labels XXXI

Healthy nails are the foundation to a fabulous manicure! You have noticed that your nails are not as healthy as you would like and are looking for a product that will correct this issue. You see a product that sounds just up your alley, but aren’t sure if it will improve your nails and meet your standards. Remember, I am teaching you Label Poise–how to walk the walk, talk the talk, and buy products that meet YOUR standards, whether natural, organic, or safe enough.  For instructions on Label Poise visit our Label Poise page.

The Label


The Ingredients

Prunus Amygdalus (Sweet Almond) Oil:  Safe! Sweet Almond oil is high in oleic acid and is primarily used as an emollient.

Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil:  Safe! This ‘oil’ is a liquid wax and has a moderate fatty acid content.

Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Oil: Safe! This oil is extracted from the bran, grain husk, of rice. It is used as an emollient and skin conditioning agent. Rice Bran Oil is high in linoleic, oleic, palmetic and stearic fatty acids.

Parfum (Fragrance):  Beware! Fragrances are often synthetic. Though they are low in concentration in the product, there is still a small chance of having an allergic reaction.

Tocopheryl Acetate:  Safe!/Beware!  Tocpheryl Acetate is has antioxidant properties and can penetrate skin cells. It is generally regarded as safe, however, there is limited information (not on a MSDS) linking it to cancer so use your best discretion. (MSDS)




Nature’s Pulchritude’s Verdict: This product is a blend of natural oils, fragrance, and an antioxidant to extend the shelf life of the oil. While you could apply Sweet Almond or Jojoba Oil to your nails if you happen to have them on hand (as well as Olive, Grapeseed, Avocado, etc.), this is also worth a try as an alternative.

Zoya Carter (Swatches & Review)

Brand: Zoya
Color: Carter
Collection: Pixiedust Fall 2013

Zoya Carter
Zoya Carter

I recently purchased this shade after eyeing it since promotional photos and swatches were first released.  Pixiedust is Zoya’s version of the textured polish craze that appears to be here to stay in the nail polish world.  Zoya describes Carter as “a royal purple with a strong magenta sparkling, matte and textured finish”.  I chose a polish by Zoya to be my first nail polish review because of their commitment to ‘healthy’ nail polish and being one of the first brands to go Big 5-Free (Toulene, Formaldehyde, Formaldehyde Resin, Dibutyl Phthalate, Camphor).


The formula on this was quite good and comparable to other textured polishes on the market.  The glitter is evenly distributed in the bottle and on the nail, and the glitter did not lose its color after several days of wear.

.9 Globe

Zoya Carter


Zoya suggests applying the polish in 3 thin coats.  The first coat (picture below) was easy to apply, however, the 2nd coat was difficult to apply but I figured it out (I brushed & dabbed the polish on).  The 3rd coat was easier to apply.  In each photo the polish was completely dry.  Was not difficult to remove using a partially acetone polish remover.

.8 Globe

Zoya Carter 1 Coat
Zoya Carter 1 Coat
Zoya Carter 2 Coats


The base is a matte purple with magenta glitter.  The press photos show a much deeper purple with more shimmer, however in person the polish is a bit more flat and not as dark.  I would have liked to see the base have more glitter and be accented by a true purple glitter.

.7 Globe

Courtesy of Art of Beauty/Zoya


This polish wore pretty well.  I did have bad chipping after only having the polish on for 24 hours, but the culprit was a hand soap that contained sodium lauryl sulfate, so be mindful of that when you do a manicure.  Only 3 nails chipped significantly, the rest only have minor tip wear after 7 full days.

.9 Globe


Ingredients: Butyl Acetate, Ethyl Acetate Nitrocellulose, Acetyl Tributyl Citrate, Isopropyl Alcohol, Ste[a]r[al]konium Hectroite, Acrylates Copolymer, Styrene/Acrylates Copolymer

As previously mentioned this product does not contain toulene, formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, dibutyl phthalate, or camphor.  Some of the ingredients it contains are toxic to the lungs and nervous system, which is not at all surprising considering it is nail polish.  It is best to polish nails in a well ventilated area and do not inhale over an open bottle.

.9 Globe

Overall, the biggest drawback of this polish was the color.  I wanted a deep royal purple and this just was not that.  It is still a good, quality polish so if you like the color do not be deterred!

4.2/5 Globes 

Beauty All-Stars: Nails!

All-Star weekend in NOLA has come to a close (go East!), but I will be featuring my Nail Beauty All-Stars.  All-Stars are the best of the BEST, not the ‘good’ on a bad team.



Manicure Essentials:

Nail File

3-Way Buffer

ORLY Bonder Rubberized Basecoat

ORLY Argan Cuticle Oil

Seche Vite Top Coat (Not Pictured)

Fall/Winter Polishes:

Essie Wicked

Essie Chinchilly

Zoya Ibiza

Every good manicure starts with healthy, shaped nails.  I first cut, file, and buff (only when necessary) my nails to desired shape and texture then follow with cuticle oil to moisturize and soften my cuticles before slightly pushing them back.  I recently started using ORLY Bonder after seeing great reviews online, and I’ve have excellent results with it.  My all time favorite top coat is another online favorite, Seche Vite.  I stopped using it because it contains toluene (read more here) and wanted a better alternative, though performance wise it is still the best I’ve used.

Essie Wicked has to be one of my favorite colors, period.  It is a deep rich burgundy that is very appropriate for winter.  The bottle I have is old so I believe the formula contains toluene, formaldehyde resin, and other now less prevalent chemicals.  Essie Chinchilly is another favorite.  It is a taupe-gray that is just lovely.  This is also an old bottle that contains less than favorable ingredients.  Zoya Ibiza is a new favorite and is a gorgeous sparkly deep blue that you have to see to appreciate.  Zoya polishes are Big 5 Free and are ‘vegan.’


What are your Nail Beauty All-Stars?