Best Nail Polishes of 2011, Part I

    Good morning, Dear Reader!

    For the first time ever, I'm doing a Best Of year-end wrap up.  It's always been an idea that appealed to me, but quite frankly it just seemed like a daunting task.  However, over the weekend Stephanie from Imperfectly Painted made a mention in passing on Twitter about doing hers in several parts, one of those brilliantly simple notions that never fails to elude me, and that got me thinking about it.

    I decided four parts seemed workable (I added a Best of 2011 label so I could give you a link to all posts from each of them for viewing all twenty polishes on one page), and that if I limited the scope of my selections to polishes I've reviewed that were released in the U.S. in 2011 (only nail polish, nothing UV cured, strips, etc.) and did not order them in any way, I could just go over post titles on the right of the page and look at the ones that jumped out at me as memorable and have a good list.  I started with the goal of a Top 10, but that began getting too involved with the wheel spinning of rethinking over and over that made the task of a Best Of seem daunting in the first place, but when I expanded it to twenty I just had to swap out the final two selections a couple of times, and that tells me I'm solid on my picks.  The length of my nails is inconsistent over the year, lighting isn't always the same, and in a perfect world the details would be perfectly uniform but they're just plain old not. Of course, this list would more accurately be named  The Best Nail Polishes of 2011 According to Me, but that seemed redundant since this is a blog and essentially everything here falls into the According to Me category.

    So that's how my little list came into being.  In choosing each to confirm that I really was as fond of each as I recall, I looked over my reviews and I'm including links to the original reviews, which include whether the polish was sent by the manufacturer or not.  That had zero bearing on my choices, which you'll see, and linking to them gives you more information about any that might strike your fancy in addition to giving you that information.  That's all I can think of that I'd want to know looking at someone else's Best Of list, so I'll move on to them and just let you ask anything else you'd like to know in the comments.  Again, I'm presenting my choices in no order at all, although I've picked my favorite manicure of the past year to tack onto the final entry.

    1. SpaRitual Knowledge is Power, the bright pink creme from SpaRitual's Spring 2011 Truth Collection.  I rethought this one several times (it seemed like a boring choice), but it's really just an exceptional vivid pink that appeals to me in a great formula, and I used it a few times last spring.

    SpaRitual Knowledge Is Power
    SpaRitual Knowledge Is Power Nail Polish, Two Coats

    2. Revlon Copper Penny, an easy to work with metallic that really looks like copper.  When Revlon does a good one, they really do a good one.

    Revlon Copper Penny
    Revlon Copper Penny Nail Polish, Two Coats

    3. FingerPaints Chrysanthe-mum's the Word from their Spring Palette of Petals Collection, the super happy not-quite-lime green creme that's almost a one-coater.

    FingerPaints Chrysanthe-mum's the Word
    FingerPaints Chrysanthe-mum's the Word Nail Polish, Two Coats

    4. Glitter Gal Marine Blue, which became readily available in the U.S. this year, is just an amazing blue holographic.  It's so vivid and so holo that it absolutely had to make the list, and it was really easy to work with as well (a huge bonus for a holo).

    Glitter Gal Marine Blue
    Glitter Gal Marine Blue Nail Polish, Two Coats

    5. This entry was rethought a few times because I didn't want to like it enough to include it, but I do so I have to.  Chanel Graphite is gorgeous and looks like fabulously sparkly graphite in just two coats.  It's painfully expensive, but I do not regret buying it.

    Chanel Graphite
    Chanel Graphite Nail Polish, Two Coats

    That's the first batch of my Top 20 Polishes of 2011, and since they're in no order anyway I figured I'd mix up the presentation a bit to offer some variety in the posts.  You'll see a couple of personal preference themes emerge by the time all twenty are posted, and I'll point out the ones I've observed that have an explanation at the end.

    Until next time, Dear Reader, love and nail polish to you!

    All Rights Reserved, Siobhan@The Nailphile. If you're reading this elsewhere, it's stolen from a real nail polish blog.

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