Sunday, June 2, 2013

When in Hong Kong: Cher 2 in Tsim Sha Tsui

Hong Kong has been one of my favorite destinations abroad. Aside from the various local brands that offer nail polish at very affordable prices, they also have Cher 2

Cher 2 is a shop that only sells stuff that has anything to do with nail polish. That includes base and top coats, treatments, files, lotions, etc. They currently have four branches around Hong Kong, but the one I've been to was their shop in TST.

This shop is not something you'd casually run into while walking around the streets of Hong Kong. It's located in the sixth floor of a building called Kowloon Centre in Ashley Road, which would be a familiar street if you know about the huge Esprit store right across Langham Place. A quick review of a map would lead you to the place, and I promise that inside that unassuming building is nail polish heaven.

The brands that they sell here are US names like OPI, Orly, China Glaze, etc. Now they are still not at par with the price in the US but considering what other stores and e-tailers charge per bottle, Cher 2 is actually affordable. Plus they are up to date with the latest collections/ Membership is free and you can sign up even if it's your first time in the store. Members get an additional 5% off the price and freebies depending on what their current promo is. The first time I went there I got a free bottle of OPI.

And now for the pictures. I'll quote the prices in PH peso minus the 5% discount. This is picture heavy!

OPI (Php 360)

Orly (Php 360)
Color Club (Php 310)
Color Club (Php 310), China Glaze (Php 310), Orly (Php 360) and Nubar (Php 413)
OPI (Php 360) and Jessica (Php 310)
Various Gel Nail Polish
Base coats, Top coats, Treatments, Lotions, Removers, Cuticle Oils
Decals, Stick-ons, brushes, Nail wheels
China Glaze (Php 310)
Essie (Php 360), Zoya (Php 413), Ruby Wing (Php 465)
Cat with more Ruby Wing and nail art pens
Cat speaks great English so it won't be a problem talking to her. She's very friendly and would even recommend her favorites and let you know which ones are from the latest collection. I've been back there three times this year so far, the first time in January and the last two on a recent trip last week and she remembers me! She's wearing China Glaze Texture in Itty, Bitty & Gritty and In The Rough.

So when you find yourself in Hong Kong wanting to get the latest collections from US brands, Cher 2 is the place to go. But don't forget to also check out the great selection offered by Asian brands.

For more information on their branches and their products, visit their website.

Essie Mojito Madness

The first ever alcoholic beverage I ordered for myself when I turned 18 was a mojito. I'd like to say that it has since become my go-to drink on nights out, but I developed a disliking to it the moment I first had a sip. I mean really, who likes to choke up on mint leaves while drinking alcohol? Not to mention how those battered pieces of leaves get stuck between the teeth.


Mojito Madness was part of the Essie Summer 2012 Bikini So Teeny collection. I applied three coats to reach full opacity.
ESSIE Mojito Madness
This polish might have to share my same distaste to its namesake. Pretty color, but I found the formula hard to work with. It applied thick and was not self-leveling. The color did dry darker on the nail than on the bottle so that should be considered when deciding to buy this.

Speaking of mojitos, I haven't had any alcohol in 4 months. Hurray?

xo Nicia

Monday, May 20, 2013

Zoya Stunning Collection

I love cremes. There's something about them that attracts me more than flashier options and that makes me reach out for them more when painting my nails. Zoya released two collections for this summer -- Stunning and Irresistible. I didn't pick up any of the Irresistible colors because hoarder as I am, I draw the line when I know I would never wear the color and foils happen to be my least favorite type of nail polish.
(L-R) Darcy, Josie, Micky, Rocky, Thandie, Yana
Today I am showing you the whole Stunning collection, composed of six cremes. All swatches are sandwiched between one coat of Orly Top 2 Bottom as base and another coat on top.

ZOYA Darcy 
Darcy is described as a sunny yellow cream and it's exactly that. Formula is a bit streaky but with careful application one can get away with two coats. I did three to cover up some bald patches.

ZOYA Josie
Josie is described as a grassy green cream. I love this color, I don't think I have anything similar to it. The color reminds me of the frosting used to pipe leaves in birthday cakes from my childhood. Very difficult to photograph and I had to edit the photo to show an accurate swatch. Formula is great and is fully opaque with two coats.

ZOYA Micky
Micky is described as a coral cream. There's very subtle shimmer in this one that isn't really visible once applied. Formula is on the thick side and is opaque with two coats.

ZOYA Rocky
Rocky is described as a serene blue cream. This one looks bright but is very wearable. It may be my favorite from the collection just because of the name (I have a brother named Rocky). Formula is great and is fully opaque with two coats.

ZOYA Thandie
Thandie is described as a citrus orange cream. It's not bright and certainly has a dusty quality to it. Like Micky it also has a subtle shimmer one wouldn't really notice if it weren't for the pooling of the shimmer particles in the bottle. Formula is great and is fully opaque with two coats.

Yana is described as a Geranium pink cream. I would say that this is the least unique color from the collection. Formula is great and is fully opaque with two coats.

Overall this collection did not disappoint. My favorites are Josie, Rocky and Thandie. Darcy is a nice addition to any collection missing a bright yellow color that isn't too stark. The colors are all appropriate for the summer.

And with that I end my first collection review. I don't plan on doing this often because unless I really like all the colors I see from the promo pics and other swatches online, I rarely buy a whole collection. Hope you find this helpful when deciding what to purchase.

xo Nicia