Best Nail Polishes of 2011, Part III

    Good morning, Dear Reader!

    Today brings the third entry in my Best Nail Polishes of 2011 series with the eleventh through fifteenth choices from my top twenty polishes of the year.  The details of assembling my list are at the beginning of Part I, but the bare bones info is that these are my twenty favorites released in the U.S. in 2011 which I've reviewed presented in no particular order.  After the long explanation in the first post, I didn't offer much explanation for the inclusion of each polish, and after doing so yesterday, I think that's information I'd want to have reading someone else's list, so I included that again today for you to either read or skip.  Let's get straight back to looking at the list!

    11.  Color Club Space Case from their Starry Temptress Collection was a real hit with me, so much so that the picture here is from the second time I wore the same manicure with it last Spring (I prefer this picture, sometimes swatches of whole collections include a few I wish I'd done better but am too painfully tired of swatching to repeat).  Color Club does excellent neon polishes in general, but what I especially like is when they do neons with a fun twist, like shimmers, scented, or in the case of Starry Temptress, loaded up with glitter.  Space Case is the super vivid Barbie pink from that collection.

    Color Club Space Case
    Color Club Space Case, Two Coats, with One Coat Color Club Starry Temptress

    12. For the same reasons as in #11, Color Club Wicked Sweet, the namesake of the Wicked Sweet Collection, had to be on my 2011 list.  I had a hard time restricting myself to one favorite from Wicked Sweet for this list, as I really loved several and specifically recall enjoying them, but when I did Wicked Sweet was it for a couple of reasons.  First, it was a two coater, and for a very vibrant blue shimmer (it's arguably a neon, but I'm using the more inclusive "vibrant" to avoid debating the point). That alone is an impressive feat, but then on top of that the shimmer completely glows and it smells like Juicy Fruit gum if the sickly sweet factor of the actual gum has been removed.  This year, Color Club's scented polishes have been far more creative than others I've used with nontraditional fragrances that smell really good and are not overpowering by any means, and the two collections in this post really impressed me and bumped up my interest in Color Club.  For the record, they're also two that I purchased and didn't have press info about.

    Color Club Wicked Sweet
    Color Club Wicked Sweet Nail Polish, Two Coats

    13.  China Glaze Skyscraper is a really outstanding silver glitter in a navy base.  I reconsidered including this one simply because silver glitter in a navy base has been done so many times before, but Skyscraper remained in my top twenty picks after I thought about the other takes on that which I've used, and this one is simply extremely well done, quite possibly the best of them (since I haven't compared it to others, that's all the commitment I can give!).  While I did need a third coat to even out the color, that seems reasonable given that the base polish can't be terribly pigmented if the glitter is to show through well, and since the glitter really showing in this one is an outstanding feature, I'll take the trade off.  Additionally, Skyscraper was very smooth for all the glitter in it.

    China Glaze Skyscraper
    China Glaze Skyscraper Nail Polish, Three Coats

    14.  Nails Inc Whitehall is a top choice for 2011 because the Nails Inc's magnetics are the best I've used (with Lancome, L'Oreal, and LCN being the others) by a lot, and Whitehall was the most unique shade in the set of three I bought (with the purple that disappointed as a result of promo picks overstating the color and silver being the third).  I know that the color choices of magnetics are limited as a practical matter, since it's the use of iron based pigment that makes them work, so again it's simply a trade off, but Whitehall's shade is really striking in person.  Additionally, as I mentioned in the posts for the two I've worn, the design of the magnet on the Nails Incs is genius, definitely the easiest to use well. I only wish I'd had sunlight for this picture, but alas, I didn't.

    Nails Inc Whitehall Magnetic
    Nails Inc Whitehall Magnetic Nail Polish, Two Coats

    15.  Nubar Boyfriend Jeans, the dupe for Chanel Blue Boy, also had to make my list.  I got Les Jeans des Chanel as a birthday gift, and was kind of surprised when examining the bottles how appealing Blue Boy was to me, enough so that it was the first one I wore even though I knew there was more interest in swatches of Coco Blue, and I recall that I kept peeking at it while wearing it.  When I compared Nubar Boyfriend Jeans to it, I found the Nubar to be easier to apply (it's a jelly and evenness can be a problem sometimes) and one heck of a color match.  One of the two had to make the list as a result, and given cost and availability, Nubar Boyfriend Jeans made the cut.  One nail here is Blue Boy, so I included the picture where that nail is labelled as well.

    Nubar Boyfriend Jeans
    Nubar Boyfriend Jeans Nail Polish with One Chanel Blue Boy Nail, Two Coats Each

    Nubar Boyfriend Jeans and Chanel Blue Boy
    Nubar Boyfriend Jeans and Chanel Blue Boy Comparison, Two Coats Each

    One shortcoming I'm aware of in presenting an honest assessment of my favorites of the year is that I don't have a whole lot that most people could wear to work.  I think only the last one today would even be an option for many, so I thought I should point out that my own experience has been such that a great deal of freedom has been allowed.  In office work, being the only woman on a team of more than twenty people has been a recurring theme, and I haven't dealt with anyone outside of the organization at all (other than interviewing applicants or consultants).  What I wore on my nails was simply never an issue, although when an office-wide "The Board of Directors will be in the office [this day], business attire is required" email went out, I had the good sense to wear a polish that pretty much made my nails invisible, and if the window for interviewing others was brief I'd go with a traditional red or something, but otherwise nobody has ever cared at all.  The same is true now that I'm in grad school - I was the only woman to complete one of my courses (the one with the most students, no less), and I just don't think the men care at all.  If they notice, they have no clue whether something's currently fashionable or whatever, so I've always been able to just do my own thing.  However, my sister was a district sales manager for a pharmaceutical company, so I have seen the other side where personal presentation is a big part of a professional position, which makes me aware that my preferences are far from universally appropriate.  I just wanted to point out that I'm aware that the loud and novelty polishes are heavily represented amongst my picks and why that is so it's clear that an authentic list of my favorites is coming from a particular frame of reference.

    Wow, this got long and chatty!  I have lots to do before tomorrow, when I take off for a fun New Year's trip, so I'll just wrap it up!  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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