2017 Favorites: Indie Brands

I’m back! With more favorites! Two days in a row!! (Yeeha!)

I realize my blog post dates indicate I posted both of my favorites blogs on the same day. But this is not true. (Edit: Actually, the date on here shows I posted it tomorrow. I’m coming to you from the futuuuuuuure …. o.o) Don’t be deceived by the machinations of the Inter-Webs! Side note: I’m feeling very “Matrix” all of a sudden. Anyhow, the point is that my blog settings are off with regard to dates and times. I posted my mainstream favorites last night around 11PM EST. Late, yes … but well before midnight. I mean, I am a crazy, nail polish lovin’, bloggin’ fool. This is true. But I try to keep it sort of hidden. I usually fail at it, but heaven is in the effort … or something like that.

Today, I wanted to share my indie favorites for the year. I had quite a good year tip-toeing through all the indie brands with giddy abandon. Almost too much of a good year, actually. Polish Pickup may still be my downfall. In contrast to my mainstream list, I had no trouble finding 17 favorites from my indie purchases this year. I could have easily made a list of 25 or 30. Somehow, I managed to restrain myself. Even so, this is going to be a long post. Most of these polishes were released during 2017. I think there might be a couple on this list that weren’t, but they are new to me this year. Also, some of these are no longer available. I feel a little bad about sharing them, but they really are favorites of mine. I wanted my list to be an honest representation of my polish lovey-lust feelings.

I’m going to organize these, roughly, in ROYGBIV order. Oh, and, as per usual, there will be a mix of older and newer-style swatch photos. You know the drill.

So … Off we go!


I’m starting off my list of favorites with reds and pinks. And I’m starting off my reds and pinks with this beauty. Colores de Carol, Daydream was from the Pure Imagination Collection. As soon as I put this lovely onto my nails, I knew it was going onto my favorites list. Because finding this polish is something akin to having a unicorn follow me home. This is my perfect coral. I love the idea of coral nail polish. It’s such a pretty color, and it looks beautiful on most people. I’ve tried so many corals over the years, and they always left me feeling flat. I never liked the way they looked on me. That is, until I found Daydream. I love seeing this polish on my nails. It makes me feel cheerful, happy, and better about life. I also love it on my toes. This beautiful polish definitely lives up to its name!


A.England, Let Me In was from the To Emily Bronte Collection. I think this collection released in 2015, but this beauty was new to me in 2017. This polish felt so amazing, comfortable, and “just right” on my nails. I love the depth in here, with the hint of berry in the undertone. As I was applying it to my nails, I literally happy-sighed. Reds and berry tones aren’t always my thing, but this one definitely is. I could happily wear this on my nails every day … and it’s not even blue!


Colores de Carol, Rooster was released this January/February in honor of The Year of the Rooster. Sadly, this polish is no longer available because it was a limited edition. But it had to go onto my list. It is so beautifully perfect. I love looking at it in the bottle, and I love it even more on my nails. I love it so much that I might have purchased 2 bottles of it, just so I wouldn’t run out right away. The mix of red and gold is such a classic, and I love the glitters peeking out through the linear holographic. Plus, I was born in the Year of the Rooster! What could be more perfect?


Colores de Carol, The Scarecrow Walks at Midnight was from the Halloween 2017 Goosebumps Collection. The moment — the very moment! — I saw this beauty, I knew it was destined to remain a favorite for me. I can’t get over it, and I can’t get enough of it on my nails. This is the darkest, most perfect burnt orange ever. Ever! I think it might be the most perfect orange in my entire stash. It looks like crushed velvet on the nail. I’ve worn this a few times so far, both solo and in nail art. I thought about getting a back-up, but Carolina kindly decided to keep this beauty as part of her core line. At least for now, and I hope it will be a forever thing. Because I’m certain I’m going to need a new bottle of this one in the future.

ps-wishyouwerebeer2-sm copy

Pretty Serious, Wish You Were Beer was a Road to Polish Con polish. I needed this one the moment I saw it. NEEDED IT!!! It’s a perfect, coppery tone of gold. And the holographic blows my mind. Sometimes, you love a polish when you see bottle shots or swatch photos online, but you get it onto your nails and realize you don’t love it much at all. That was definitely not the case with this golden holographic beauty. This looks just like beer — on my nails! What could be better than this? I couldn’t get enough of it when it arrived at my house. I quickly realized 1 bottle wasn’t enough, and procured a back-up for my stash. I would gladly bathe in this beautiful polish, except that would be such a tragic waste … and I’m confident the glitters would end up in all sorts of *ahem* places. Yikes.


Pretty Serious, Khepri’s Amulet was part of the Museum of Nailentology. I think this polish first released in 2015 or 2016, but it was new to me in 2017. This polish was a no-brainer for this list. I fell hard for it as soon as I saw it in person and on my nails. It is so bright and shimmery and jewel-like and color-shifty. It looks like bright green, slightly iridescent beetle wings. I was obsessed with this polish when I got it. I wore it on its own. I wore it over black. I bought a second bottle as a back-up. This polish is still available from Pretty Serious, but it’s often sold out. Actually, I’m still obsessed with it. I’m sitting here thinking I need to wear it again — soon!


Rise and Shine Nail Lacquer, Skyline Drive was part of the September Polish Pickup. September was my second month participating in the madness that is this online sale. It’s fabulous and fantastic and everything. Plus a bag of chips. And, of course, this lovely light blue had to go onto my favorites list. HAD TO. It is the perfect shade of light, breezy blue. And I love the flakes, which pop purple and darker blue against the lighter base. This polish feels lighter than air, and it made me feel pretty and happy when it was on my nails. I couldn’t get enough of it.


Pretty Serious, My Immortal is a limited edition polish not associated with any particular collection. I believe this polish was limited to a run of 300 bottles. I checked just before writing this post, and it is still listed as available on the Pretty Serious website. I might have procured 2 bottles for myself … but I’m not saying. *ahem* So. This polish. Oh my gosh, this polish. I adore it. I love the brightness of the blue. I love the slightly brighter shimmer. I love the slight tints of purples just around the edges of the bottle and my nails. This makes me so happy when I see it on my nails. I want to roll around in it like a happy cat.


LynB Designs, Siren Song is from the October Polish Pickup. I wore this one just recently, and it immediately shot into “favorite of the year” status. After I posted this on Instagram, my nail bestie told me, “This polish is so you.” She is so, so, so RIGHT!! It is so ME!! I’m so in love with this color of blue. And with the pinkish flashes from the little flakes/sparkles. The colors are soft and delicate and … ugh … so freaking beautiful. As soon as I saw this, I thought, “YAAAS! Mermaid nails!” I didn’t want to take this off at all. The only thing I don’t like about this polish is the fact that it was limited edition for Polish Pickup, and I only have 1 bottle.


A. England, Katherine Parr was from the Tudoresque Collection. As soon as I put this on my nails, I was like, “Oh yes, Darling Blue Polish. Welcome home to mah nails!” I keep on saying this, but, yeah, I could bathe in this beautiful, perfect, amazing blue. Fill the tub up, people … ‘Cuz I’m comin’ in!! What more can I say, really? This is one of the most perfect blues I’ve seen in a long time. And I see a LOT of blues. A LOT. I know, I know. I’m getting a little crazy here. But I just love this one. So freaking much. I kinda want to wear it on my nails non-stop. I won’t, because I have too many polishes I need to wear. But I want to.


Colores de Carol, 1776 was a special Fourth of July release for this year. This was another no-brainer for this list. I love, love, love everything about it. I especially love the jelly goodness of the blue base and those gorgeous, big glitters floating around in it. And the sparks of red, too! OhMyGOSH!!!!!! It makes me want to run around my room, screaming at the top of my lungs. That’s how darn good it is! Sadly, it’s no longer available. And I only have one bottle. Just thinking about that makes me want to cry. But this polish makes me so amazingly, incredibly, beautifully HAPPY! I was obsessed, hard-core, with this polish when it came out. I wore it a few times over the summer. And I probably would have worn it more, except I started looking at the wear line in the bottle and thinking about how much I love it. And then, I thought about how I only have one bottle. This one might be destined to be a once-a-year polish for me, saved only for wearing around July 4th every year — just because the idea of running out makes me so sad. Polish Addict Hoarder Life, people — It’s not for sissies!


Crows Toes, Need a Light?! was from the October Polish Pickup. And I love it so, so much. And I want it on my nails — all the freaking time! I mean, look how perfect it is. I love the deep and dark and murky and mysterious base color. I love the glitters and shards. I love the holographic. This one kicks me right in the lovey-lusty feels. And I want it on my nails. All the freaking time!!!


Colores de Carol, Sombrero was from the Cosmic Summer Collection this year. I discovered this year that multi chromes are not really for me. Now, don’t get me wrong. I bought the whole collection, and I love it. I enjoyed every single polish in it. But I say multi chromes aren’t for me because I now have no further desire to buy multi chromes. For the most part, when a multi chrome polish grabs my attention now, I end up not buying it because I feel like I just don’t need it. After all, I have Cosmic Summer, which more than satisfies my need for multi chrome shifty polish.

Out of the collection, Sombrero was easily my favorite. And it landed on this list for a couple of reasons. One, because this whole collection was my first foray into multi chromes, so it felt really ground-breaking to me. Two, because this polish is such a perfect mix of indigos, blues, purples, and a little warm red/orange tossed in for good measure. The shift in this polish, even more than the others in the collection, mesmerized me. I’ve worn this at least a couple of times. Maybe even three times, so far. That’s a lot for a polish addicted goofball like me!


Baby, It’s Warm Outside! was from the recent Holiday Caribbean Christmas Collection. And it had to go onto my list. Right away, I knew this had to have a spot on here. Because this polish blew me away, right out of the bottle. I remember first applying this on my nails when I was swatching, and I felt so delighted in seeing it flow from the brush onto my nails. I laughed out loud — that’s how happy it made me. True story.


Glam Polish, An Unexpected Journey was from the Wizardly Ways Collection this year. I’m using a macro shot of this one (over Zoya, Padma) because I feel like it shows off the glitter shapes and mix, as well as the color change from the iridescent glitters. I was immediately obsessed with this topper when I saw it in person. Obsessed! I spent most of a day trying this out over a lot of different colors. And it looks amazing over everything. This was a bit of a ground-breaker for me, too, which is another reason for it being on the list. This year, I fell head over heels in love with anything and everything that contains iridescent glitters. I have since purchased a few toppers with this type of glitter and shift “look”. But this one was the first. Without this little lovely, I would never have jumped onto the iridescent/shifty glitter train like I did. So, I thank you, Unexpected Journey. And my wallet thanks you, too.


Moonshine Mani, Be Giving was part of a Thanksgiving Duo Collaboration this year. I. LOVE. This. Glitter. It is so beautiful and sparkly and chunky and just perfection. There is something about this one. I don’t know if it’s the color tones, the glitter mix and shapes, or something else altogether, but this glitter makes me think of Norman Rockwell Thanksgiving, warm childhood memories, and Victorian ladies in fancy dresses. That’s a LOT for a polish to deliver, and I know all that sounds totally crazy. This has a vintage feel to me. I love it by itself, but this glitter comes alive over a darker brown.


And, rounding out my list is Colores de Carol, S’mores With a Twist, which was part of the Fall 2017 Collection. This is another polish that makes me want to cry because of its prettiness. I think this is the prettiest, most perfect holographic brown I’ve ever seen. It is warm and cool at the same time. It has the most beautiful hints of pink running throughout it. And it looks so, so, so darn GOOD going onto the nail. I love wearing it. Having it on my nails feels restful and peaceful.


So that’s my huge post of indie polish favorites: 17 of them for 2017. If you made it here to the end, thank you for sticking it out all the way through. I had a lot of fun going back through what I purchased over the year and enjoying the lovely memories. Nail polish is like that for me. It is such a wonderful source of happiness, and I always have fond memories attached to the colors I love. This is especially true with my absolute favorites. I love looking at photos of them and remembering how happy, excited, or amazed I was when I first saw and swatched them. There’s something magical about a new polish, and I think this is doubly true for indies. There are many combinations of glitter and shimmer and color. Getting to see all of these working together on your nails that first time is like opening a special present.

One of my polish resolutions from last year was to purchase more indies and try to take my stash more in that direction. I feel like I did a good job of sticking with that plan. I also feel like I did a much better job of picking indies I loved and that added to my collection, as opposed to feeling I had simply purchased things to fill up space (like I mentioned feeling with my mainstream purchases over the past year). I had a lot of Colores de Carol on my list, of course. No big surprise. Colores de Carol was my gateway indie brand, and it remains my favorite. But I made some new discoveries this year, too. I found Polish Pickup, which, even in a short time, has become a favorite thing and something I look forward to each month. I also tried several new brands this year, including some that appear on this list. In particular, Pretty Serious, Moonshine Mani, and Crows Toes are, I hope, destined to grow in my stash during the coming year. I’m more than okay with this.






2 thoughts on “2017 Favorites: Indie Brands

  1. Great job steering your collection more towards what you love!
    As far as polishes without backups….. Remember, THEY WILL MAKE MORE POLISH 😂
    Let me know when you finish up any of those bottles!!! Especially with Polish Pickup (aka Evil Wallet Vacuum)in your life!!


    1. Ha!! THAT IS SO TRUE!!!! I’m laughing so hard right now. It’s funny how we (collective, general “we”) feel about the possibility of using up one of our favorites. And Polish Pickup is definitely there to supply more. And more … and more … and … 😛


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