Battle of the Kolors – Nudes, A Polish Comparison

I’m not going to lie, I feel a bit exposed with today’s post. Why? Because, I’ve pulled out all my nude polishes for the next round in my Battle of the Kolors series.

nude nail polish comparison

Mannequin hands. Classic French Tips. Work “appropriate” nails. Regardless the reason to seek out a nude color nail polish, the quest can be eternal. Personally, I jumped on the trend a few years back because the search for the perfect nude polish seemed an interesting challenge. Makes perfect sense, of course, as I have lots of fond memories finding the perfect pair of pantyhose (hah!). You too? The hunt is always on, isn’t it. If only we could try polish and pantyhose on before buying them, right?!

Nude As A Color Group

Speaking of the quest for the matching nude shade…I’ve gathered today’s polishes using particularly subjective criteria. It just so happens that my skin tone is very pale. Consequently, for me, I consider the nude colors to be extremely light browns, pinks, yellows, etc. Basically if there’s just a hint more color than what would be considered a white polish in my collection, I grabbed it. With a few exceptions, polishes that have more saturation in these color groups fall into those respective color comparison sets for me. Of course, you may categorize yours differently.

Now, having said that, there are a few polishes that I chose to include in this Battle of the Kolors’ comparison that don’t really fit my stated description. It seems, after all, I basically took the liberty and made up my own rules as to which polishes are in this group. How do you like them apples?!? LOL (The pun is even funnier if you recall this nail art post by that name in which I used a couple nude polishes in a watermarble.)

Let the battle begin

Continuing with the mission to reduce my polish collection, I’m tackling each color group one at a time. I have 16 polishes, A.K.A. contestants, in today’s battle. The bottles themselves are shown in the first picture (above). Once again, I chose to paint a quick swatch of each on a color wheel (shown below). Half of them have some shimmer, flakie and/or holographic particles swimming in their formulas adding a bit of flair (numbers 1-8). While the other half of them are solid color in their appearance, despite one’s very shy shimmer (numbers 9-16).

nude polish swatch wheel

 

Polish Dupes – Yes? or No?

The last four polishes (numbers 13-16) are very close to my skin tone. It seemed only natural, pun intended, to test these on my actual fingers when making the de-stash decisions. I’ll spare you the extra reading time today because I used the same method as described in the previous battle, but in case you want the details here is a link to the coral BOTK.

Below you’ll find a comparison of bottles and nail swatches for two crellies and two cremes. Sandwiched in between, is a chart depicting the criteria and scoring. Lastly, my notes from the swatch session are included as well.

pale nude nail polish

    F P C O J
Loaded LacquerNo Shirt
Butter LondonCuppa
OPIMy Vampire Is Buff
ZoyaCho
F = Formula, P = Payoff, C = Color, O = Other, J = Joy

four pale nude polish swatch comparison

No Shirt by Loaded Lacquer

Pros: Awesome formula, applies beautifully. Delightful crelly with even color. Can be built to opacity if desired.

Cons: None!

Verdict: Loaded Lacquer made fantastic jelly and crelly polishes! (Damn, it’s a shame this brand has closed.) As such, this one is seriously a joy to apply and wear. Squishy, shiny crelly which I adore. This one stays with me.

 

My Vampire Is Buff by OPI

Pros: Decent formula. Fresh, light palette cleansing shade. Color doesn’t dull with my skin tone. Although part of a 2013 collection, it is still a stocked color from OPI.

Cons: If too much polish on the brush it pools. Hence, requires several thin coats to get opaque coverage with longer nails.

Previous Posts: Two nail art challenge entries from #31DC2013: Day 11 – Dots and Day 13 – Animal Print.

Verdict: I really like the color and brightness. Looks good with my skin tone. Polish has uses for nail art as well as a base color. Keeping this one.

 

Cuppa by Butter London

Pros: Very opaque with good payoff. Unique shade. Although from 2013 Spring collection, some bottles are still found online.

Cons: With my skin tone, this doesn’t appeal to me as much as the others.

Previous Posts: Love is Green (Day 22 of #31DC2013 – Song) and August Theme of the Month. It’s interesting that I paired this polish with green both times.

Verdict: Even though I like this polish as a base and for nail art, I decided to move on from it. Destash.

 

Cho by Zoya

Pros: Pretty vanilla color. Almost invisible shimmer, but adds interest. Still a current color, available through Zoya.

Cons: Even taking into account that it is a crelly, this one is tricky to apply evenly. Personally, without undies she doesn’t look good on my nail bed.

Previous Posts: Used as the base color in the previously mentioned post: How Do You Like Them Apples?

Verdict: Polish is just not well suited for me. De-stash.

nude polish in nail art

A look back at previous posts with nude nail polishes

That’s Not All Folks

Regarding the rest of this group, I can sum up my keep – vs – de-stash decisions pretty quickly. There were no rejects of any kind. All of these polishes had good or great formulas. And, they all have the appropriate payoff for their type.

Regarding the shimmers, etc. (numbers 1-8), the two I chose to purge are a bit random. These ended up in my collection because they were part of a group purchase, but I just don’t like them. Simple as that. The others were all unique and provide the personal joy for keeping.

Now, I must admit that I probably don’t need to keep each one of the sheer crellies (numbers 9-12)….but I just couldn’t part with any of them. I can envision a use for their subtle differences in nail art designs, so I gave myself a break and kept them all. Signs of a true #nailpolishaddict, right here! Deciding to part with polish is hard!! Can I have a hug now?

Final Score

Okay, here is that same color wheel, this time marked with those now in the de-stash pile. Below it is a complete list of the polishes’ brands and names; the X marks those that I’m parting with.

nude polish comparison swatch wheel

1MentalityElizabeth
X2Ciate'Members Only
X3Ciate'Ivory Queen
4Supernatural LacquerShapeshifter
5Cult NailsCruisin' Nude
6Supernatural LacquerHey, Assbutt!
7ILNPSpiced Eggnog
8Elevation PolishLimestone
9OPIDon't Touch My Tutu
10OPIYou Callin' Me A Lyre?
11OPIBarre My Soul
12Ciate'Amazing Gracie
13Loaded LacquerNo Shirt
X14ZoyaCho
15OPIMy Vampire Is Buff
X16Butter LondonCuppa

 

As it turns out, I guess I did okay…yes? Unintentionally, I purged an equal amount from each group: 2 from the shimmers and 2 from the solids. Overall, I reduced the starting number of 16 polish bottles by 4, leaving 12 polish bottles put back in their drawers. Polish collection reduction: 25%

How do you think I did? Do you have a favorite nude polish?

Thanks for joining me today!! Stay tuned for a nail art post featuring one of these nude shades. Want to guess which one? I’ll give you a hint: it’s shifty. 😉

 

Till Next Time,

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  • Lisa Tryon

    Interesting. Cuppa and Cho both looked darker on the nail wheel but once on your hand they looked lighter and were less flattering. 25% is pretty good number to destash. 🙂

    • Yes — it’s like the polishes are chameleons! LOL To be fair though, I think the color wheel photos look a bit more saturated than they are IRL, but still it is true that the polishes did look different once on my nails. I think next time I’ll try putting the color wheel against a different background, the white is driving my camera (and me) a bit crazy. Thanks for your support & encouragement….I very much appreciate it!!

      • Lisa Tryon

        Getting color-accurate photos is so hard. I wish it were easier. And it could also be that your color wheel is a solid white and that’s throwing things off more too. So many elements that can’t be entirely controlled. :p

        • Boy – you aren’t kidding, Lisa!! I feel much more comfortable with nail art photos and have a huge respect for the ladies that swatch polish consistently well. And, you’re right, my color wheel is not completely transparent — it’s a very sheer cream or off-white color, but up against my white board it becomes white. Thanks so much for the feedback!!

          • Lisa Tryon

            I am in awe of swatchers. They are definitely doing something I cannot. And, hey, we nail artists have to help each other out. Even if we’re only waving flags from the cheering section. 🙂

          • Couldn’t agree more! 😉

  • I feel like out of all the colors we need the most nudes since not all looks need the same nude color if that makes sense???

    I seriously love how in depth you go for your blog posts. You spend so much time and love and it’s very apparent!

    • Wow – you have so made my day!! Sometimes I wish I knew how to spend just a little less time, LOL. Thanks so much hun! And, yes, you’ve made perfect sense — and made me feel better about “needing” multiple nude poilshes in my collection. Thank you!! 😉 XO