I’m back with a whole new nail polish brand in my swatch-a-palooza extravaganza. It’s Monday, which is always a mixed bag. In typical Monday fashion, today has been a suck-fest — not for any huge reason, but for a bunch of small reasons. My neighbor replaced the roof on his house about 8 days ago. This was on a Sunday, and the roofers started work at 8:30 in the AM. It was not a fun time. Today, I discovered that the same neighbor is getting another new roof. Or roofing again. Or whatever you want to call it. I’m not sure why this is happening. It seems ridiculous to me to have a new set of roofers climb all the way up there and rip off a brand-new roof. But whatever. It’s not my house. It is connected to my house, though. So I feel like I’m stuck in Groundhog Day hell having to, once again, live through the inconvenience of having my driveway blocked, shingles all over my lawn, and strangers standing around in my driveway. With no warning it would be happening. Because that’s the kind of place where I live. People have no consideration or common courtesy for each other at all. It was a struggle getting my car out of the garage because I had to negotiate with the roofers to get them to move their truck. Then, I had all these pesky errands to run. I could rant on and on. For days.
But!! Let’s not do that. Let’s take a deep breath and look at some nail polish. It’s time for happy thoughts. Woo Hoo!
Today is the first of my Orly polishes. I have decided to lump all the Orlys together into one category for swatching purposes. This includes the regular Orly line, Orly Breathable, and Orly Colorblast. I have about 30 polishes in all, and there wasn’t a super easy way of breaking them down by color without splitting a color between posts. So I decided to power through and do these in 2 massive posts. Needless to say, this is gonna be a little bit long. Grab a snack and get comfy, guys!
RED & PINK:
Star Spangled is from the Summer 2010 In the Navy Collection. It is a red jelly base with red glitter. This polish has a great formula. It is easy to work onto the nail, creating very little need for clean-up. It is opaque in 2-3 coats. This depends on application technique and nail length, due to the jelly base. I am generally happy with it at 2.
So, does this polish look at all familiar to you? Think hard … (not!). Yeah, it’s basically my beloved Ruby Pumps in a different brand. I think Ruby Pumps may be a bit more glittery or sparkly, but I’m not sure. Believe it or not, I haven’t done a side-by-side comparison of these two yet. I intend to do that, though. I’ll get to it one of these days, I swear! In the meantime, I feel I should destash this polish, but I am not going to. I started out thinking I would because it is so similar to Ruby Pumps. But the truth is that I’m not strong enough to do it. I fall for the fantastic formula on this polish every time. It really is fabulous. I also like how bright and vibrant it is on the nail. I am keeping this one.
Stronger Than Ever is from the Orly Breathable line of polishes. It is a fiery red with gold shimmer. The formula is fantastic. It is easy to apply and opaque for me in 2 coats. This polish is a little more sheer in order to let the shimmer show through on each coat. I don’t think I could ever get it opaque in 1 coat, even when my nails are short.
Orly Breathable is a line of polishes that are marketed as all-in-one, meaning you do not need a base or top coat with them. The idea is that this polish lets air and hydration get through to the natural nail plate. In addition, these polishes contain Argan Oil, Vitamin B5, and Vitamin C. All of this great stuff helps heal damage and leads to healthier natural nails. That’s the idea, anyhow. For myself, I’m not sure I get the full benefit of the hydration and breathability, because I always wear them with a base and top coat. It’s just second nature to me at this point, and I generally forget not to use them when applying a Breathable.
So … Stronger Than Ever. What a great name for nail polish, right? This is a fantastic color, too. I love how shimmery and fiery it is. The gold makes a beautiful compliment to the red tones. This is a beautiful polish for every day wear, but it is also special enough for holiday or a special occasion. Needless to say, it’s a keeper.
The Antidote is from Orly Breathable. It is a dark, rich cherry red with, maybe, a hint of maroon to it. This polish has a fantastic formula. It is easy to apply and opaque in 1 coat, although I generally wear 2. Even at 1 coat, I feel you get the rich and deep color you see in the bottle.
This was one of the first Orly Breathable polishes I purchased. And I love it. It has a beautiful creme formula. And the opacity blows me away. I also enjoy this color. It is beautifully rich and dark, and I like how it contrasts against my pale skin. I haven’t had problems with this polish staining my nails, but I always wear a base coat. I don’t know if it would stain without one. This polish is a keeper for me.
Naughty is a dark, deep maroon or oxblood red jelly. The Orly website describes this polish as a dark brown, but I do not see that in my bottle. I feel like I can see brown undertones in here, but this baby is definitely a vampy red. The formula is nice and even, and beautifully opaque in 2 easy coats.
I love dark, moody, vampy reds. And this is a good one. It is a keeper for me.
Miss Conduct is from the Holiday 2012 Naughty or Nice Collection. It is a magenta base with holographic glitter. This has a lovely formula that is easy to apply and opaque in 2 coats. It is actually opaque in 1 coat, but the color is much nicer at 2.
I am pretty sure Miss Conduct is the correct name for this polish. My bottle came to me with no label. I purchased it on clearance at Sally’s, and I guess the label had dropped off somehow. I matched it with different Orly swatches, and it seemed to match the swatches for Miss Conduct. At any rate, this is a pretty, pretty pink. It is bright, vibrant, and cheerful. And I love the sparkle. It’s a keeper.
Pink Chocolate is a dusty, medium-toned rosy pink. It has a lovely creme formula that is pretty much perfect. It is nicely opaque in 2 coats. This polish could probably be a 1-coater, but I almost always wear polishes at 2.
This polish is easy, breezy, and oh-so-pretty. Y’all know how hard I’ve been loving on the “grandma rosy-pinks” over the last few months. And this one is pretty fabulous, all around. It is also fairly new to my stash, so it’s a keeper.
Kiss the Bride is a pale, whited-out pastel pink. The formula for this polish is sheer. It seems streaky when you first apply it, but the formula evens out well on its own. Even with the sheerness, it is nicely opaque in 2-3 coats.
I don’t often love light pinks, but I love this one. It is a great shade of pastel. It is a peaceful and beautiful color that gives a nice, clean look on the nail. I like the finish it has, and I enjoy seeing this polish on my nails. It is a keeper.
ORANGE & YELLOW:
Amazon Goddess is from Orly Colorblast. It came out as part of the Wonder Woman Collection. This is a sizzling hot yellow that skirts right at the edge of being a neon. The formula on this polish is pretty good, especially considering it is a bright yellow. There is some streaking, although it is possible to even the color out over the nail. I still need 3 coats with this one for full opacity and no low spots. I don’t hold this against the polish because … well, “yellow”.
I originally thought I would destash this polish. I like the idea of yellows, but I find I don’t wear them often. When I swatched this polish a second time, I realized just how much I like it. It is a beautiful look on the nail. I like how it is bright and sunny without having that weird, eye-searing look that is typical for neons. I decided to keep this one.
Steal the Spotlight is from the Holiday 2014 Sparkle Collection. It is a clear base with teal micro glitters and pink hex glitters. The formula is great. It has a fantastic glitter pay-off, and it is opaque on its own at 2-3 coats. For real life wear, I tend to be happy with this one at 2 coats. But I did 2 for my photo, and I feel it could have used a third.
This is a beautifully sparkly and versatile polish. I love it best on its own, but you can also wear it as a topper at 1 coat. It looks particularly beautiful over a black. I think it might also be gorgeous over a really deep and dark blue. This is a keeper for me.
Sparkling Garbage is from the Summer 2013 Mash Up Collection. It is a slightly tinted, soft green jelly base with holographic glitter. The formula for this polish is fantastic. The base is sheer, which affects the opacity, but it is nicely opaque on its own in 3 coats. It is also nice as a topper at 1 coat, although the tint to the base limits what you can use as the base color.
I am pretty sure this is the first Orly that came into my stash. I. Freaking. LOVE. This polish!! Love it! I generally wear it on its own. I love the almost sheer look to it after it is built up on the nail. You can look down through every single layer of polish and see every single bit of glittery goodness. It reminds me of a sparkly countertop or something like that. Also, the name is beyond fabulous. This polish is a keeper for me, for sure.
Jealous Much? is from the Spring 2012 Cool Romance Collection. It is a pastel, dusty green. I’ve seen it described as a “mint green”, and I guess I can see that. But I feel the muted dustiness saves it from falling into that minty category. The formula is pretty thin and watery, so I wouldn’t consider it to be fantastic. It is opaque in 2-3 coats, depending on nail length and application technique.
This polish has a jelly or crelly finish on the nail, which might explain the watery and slightly difficult formula. You have to go thin with this polish, or you are going to have a mess on your hands — literally! When I went into my second round of swatching all of these, I remembered how difficult the formula is for this polish. And I had more than halfway made up my mind to destash it. But, once I got it fully opaque and on my nails, I loved the finished look. I want to compare it to the next polish in this post. If they are as similar as I think they are, then I will likely destash this one. If not, I may keep it because I kind of love the finished look on my nails.
Fresh Start is from Orly Breathable. It is a pale, pastel green with a slightly dusty quality. I think this polish skirts the edge of minty without quite getting into that territory. This has a perfect formula. It is smooth, easy, and opaque in 2 coats.
I really enjoy this polish, both for the color and the formula. I don’t usually like minty greens, but I find this one wearable. I think it’s because of the dusty quality it has. The formula is also pretty fabulous, which makes it a joy to apply. I want to compare this polish to Jealous Much? to see how close they are. If this one is at all similar, I will likely keep this polish and destash the other. Even though I like both of them, I don’t feel I need two that are this color.
Gumdrop is from the Spring 2010 Sweet Collection. It is a light blue-green with a slightly muted or dusty quality on the nail. This polish has a good formula. It is pretty much opaque at 1 coat, although I find 2 deepens the color so that it looks very similar to what you see in the bottle.
I’m sure you can see the trend in there by now. I love these types of dusty, muted polishes. I like how the blue undertones in this one show through clearly on the nail. And I find the formula to be pretty fantastic, especially for this type of pastel. This one is a keeper, although I would also like to compare it to Fresh Start and Jealous Much?, just for grins.
Hip and Outlandish is from the Spring 2016 Melrose Collection. It is a vivid, electric turquoise or teal. My brain says turquoise whenever I see this one, although it leans a lot more toward green than blue. This has a great formula. It needs 1-2 coats for opacity, depending on application technique and nail length.
So this polish falls squarely into that “institutional blue-green” type of color I generally don’t like. And yet, I find I enjoy this one on my nails a lot. I think it is because it has a creamy look that isn’t quite as eye-searing as the other “institutional” blue-greens I’ve already destashed. I’m not sure how much I will wear this, but I like how vibrant and smooth it looks on the nail. It also has a pretty fabulous formula. I feel like I’m okay with keeping at least one of this type of polish in my stash, and this is the one. It’s a keeper for me.
Good Karma is from Orly Breathable. It is a slightly dusty, medium-toned blue that seems to lean a little toward a navy blue color tone. This has a good formula that is opaque in 1-2 coats.
This is my newest Orly acquisition. It was a total and complete impulse purchase on a recent trip to Sally’s. You know how it goes … I was in there, I saw this beautiful polish, and I had a coupon. It was meant to be! I find this to be a lovely, lovely tone of blue. It is very wearable for me, and I’m looking forward to enjoying it on my nails. This one is a keeper.
Royal Navy is from the Summer 2010 In the Navy Collection. It is a vibrant medium to dark blue jelly base with blue glitter. The formula is sheer, but it applies evenly. It is opaque in 2-3 coats, depending on nail length and application technique.
This polish is freaking fabulous. I love it. And it’s a keeper. I know … You’re shocked, right?
Super Strength is from Orly Colorblast. It is from the Wonder Woman Collection, and it is a bright aqua or turquoise blue. This polish has a good formula that is opaque in 2 easy coats.
I love how vibrant this polish is. It has a beautifully creamy look on the nail, and I love seeing it against my pale skin tone. This one is a definite keeper. I only regret that the Colorblast bottle is so darn small.
Skinny Dip is from the Summer 2012 Feel the Vibe Collection. It is a bright blue with shimmer, although I find the shimmer very subtle on the nail. The formula is sheer and a bit thin, but not impossible. It builds up well and is opaque in 2 coats. If I had longer nails, I might want to use 3 for full opacity.
This polish is vibrant and so pretty. I wish the formula was a little thicker, but I still love this one on my nails. It feels like a perfect Summer color. This one is a keeper.
Snow Cone is from the Spring 2010 Sweet Collection. It is a cornflower blue creme. The formula is nice and easy to use. My bottle is slightly thick. I don’t know if this polish has a thicker formula, in general, or if this is just my bottle. Even with the additional thickness, this is an easy polish. It’s opaque in 1 coat.
I pretty much love everything about this polish. I love the color, which has the tiniest bit of purple or periwinkle to it. I love the formula. I love how it looks on my nails. This is a great polish, and it’s definitely a keeper for me.
Forget Me Not is from the Spring 2017 La La Land Collection. It is a pastel sky blue. I have seen reviews of this polish indicating the formula was difficult, at best. My bottle has a good formula. I’m not sure if Orly reworked the formula for this polish after the collection’s initial release, or if I got lucky and got a good bottle. Whatever the case, I found this polish easy to work and opaque in 2 coats with minimal streaking.
Y’all know how much I adore this polish. It was one of my favorites for 2017, and I raved and raved about it here on the blog. This one is a definite keeper for me.
Morning Mantra is from Orly Breathable. It is a pastel baby or powder blue. This polish has a good formula that is opaque in 2 easy coats.
This is another pale, pastel blue I really like. It has a light and airy look to it, almost like wearing a cloud on my nails. This one is a keeper.
Whew!! That was a long post full of Orly polish goodness! I debated and debated over how to split up my Orly stash. I am sure I gave it a lot more thought than was necessary. I am not fully happy with doing such a huge post, but I didn’t want to split the blues or the greens between posts. So, we ended up with this madness. I would say I’m sorry, but … I’m really not.
One thing I realized when I swatched through these polishes for the second time is that I am really impressed with Orly’s formula, in general. There are a couple in here that have tricky formulas, but almost all of my Orly polishes are dependable and easy to use. That is quite an accomplishment for any polish maker. My Orly stash is a slow grower, but I hope it will continue to expand in the coming year.