Saturday, February 8, 2014

REVIEW of OPI Alcatraz...Rocks With SWATCHES

Hello darlings,

Today I have a polish from OPI's Fall 2013 San Francisco collection. I didn't see this one in stores so I ordered it off amazon because I was just so in love with the swatches I had seen online. I want to say that this polish didn't disappoint... but it did. And then again, it didn't. Let's break it down.

Color: OPI Alcatraz...Rocks is a dark blue textured polish. My personal opinion is that it's a dark blue base that leans towards navy containing silver microglitter that can reflect back as a multitude of colors including red, green, and yellow. For a long time this polish underwhelmed me both in its matte form and with top coat but then I realized that this polish eats top coat. When I applied a thicker layer of top coat I saw how beautiful this polish could really be. With a single layer of top coat, the sparkle is more understated and falls a little flat. The sparkle is also a little flat if you wear this as a textured polish. But with a sufficient amount of top coat, this polish is gorgeous.
Formula: Alcatraz...Rocks has a thinner, fluid formula.
Application: Having used Elmer's glue as a base coat with much success with other glitter polishes I decided to not even pretend I wanted to deal with cleaning up a glitter polish the old-fashioned way and used glue as a base coat for my entire manicure this time. I used two coats of glue as my base coat, painted on with a regular nylon brush I bought at an art supply store (Pearl Paint if you're in NYC) to create a relatively thick barrier between the polish and my nails.
The first coat went on very smoothly. It was quite sheer and not exactly an even layer of polish but it was already very sparkly. As this polish is a little thin, it's important to make sure you don't have too much polish on the brush or it'll flood your cuticles and make a mess before you know what's happened. The second coat of polish also applied smoothly. However, it thankfully applied more evenly than the first coat and at two coats the polish was already much darker than at one coat though it was still not opaque. At three coats the polish was as opaque as I felt it needed to be. It hadn't reached the full opacity of a good creme polish but I think it looked fine, especially because it applied evenly so there were no bald patches.
Wear: I wore this polish for eight days. I think the polish eats top coat. With one layer of Seche Vite, you can still feel a bit of texture and the polish doesn't really sparkle. With another thick coat of Seche Vite (two coats in total) you get the full shine and smooth finish and feel of a regular (non-texture) polish. I find the polish much prettier this way. While I was testing the polish I only wore it with one coat of Seche Vite (though all the swatches were taken with the two layers) and I feel like I would have liked the polish more had I worn it with 2 layers of top coat to begin with.
The polish held up well on the hand where I didn't use top coat. After eight days I only experienced a minuscule bit of tip wear and some growth at the cuticle. The polish surprisingly didn't hold up as well on the hand where I applied one layer of Seche Vite. After eight days there was some chipping one on nail (though the chipping occurred a few days before the eight day mark), there was more tip wear and growth, and my manicure began to look dull a day or two after application.
As for the glue as base coat method, the polish peeled off easily. All but 2 nails came off in one piece.

CONCLUSION: I would recommend this polish but not enthusiastically. Learn from my experience. This polish doesn't look fantastic as a textured polish and if you wear it with top coat be sure to apply a sufficient number of layers to get a smooth surface and get this polish to appear its best. Use glue as your base coat for easy removal. And realize that this polish won't be fully opaque.

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Let's start with the matte/textured swatches. The polish was darker than this in person which is more apparent in the shine/top coat swatches.

Now let's move onto the shine/top coat swatches.

If you are curious, this is what the polish looks like after you've peeled it off the nail.

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