No, the point of this blog is nail polish. So, how does one relate Harry Potter to nail polish? By creating a series of nail polishes inspired by things relating to the series, of course! And that's exactly what indie nail polish maker Twisted Colors has done! Here is a link to the Houses and Horcruxes collection.
Twisted Colors is my very first indie polish, and so far it's my only. I plan on buying her next Potter-themed collection, which is inspired by the candies of Harry Potter, the moment she releases it. She's posted two sneak-peaks on her Facebook page, and they look absolutely gorgeous! They're both glitter bombs, and I expect that the other two will be as well.
One more thing, and then I'll get to the swatches. I have a hell of a time removing glitter polishes. It's probably the reason I didn't start my blog out by swatching this collection! So for this, I decided to try out a DYI peel-off basecoat. (here's the tutorial I used, but there are tons more out there!) OPI makes a peel-off basecoat, but I wanted to be thrifty and try making my own. Luckily I had a topcoat that I absolutely hated due to its inability to dry, so I used that bottle rather than dump out a color I even sort of liked. Normally, peeling off nail polish is terrible for your nails, but remember smearing glue all over your hand in elementary school, and then peeling it off after it dried? That's basically the idea behind a glue basecoat! It peels safely off of your nails, without ripping up layers of your nail!
To save time, application is a teeny bit tricky for this entire collection. The brushes are just a little too wide, at least for the shape of my nails. You know how if you've been painting for a long time without washing your paint brush, it ends up super saturated and it globs on too much paint no matter how much you try to wipe off on the edge of your paint can ? That's sort of the feeling I get from these brushes. It's not the worst thing in the world, because at least the nail polish formula isn't thick and globby. So it spreads well, but you just have to be careful with the brush. The glitters don't cling to the brush too much, nor do they glob up on the nail.
Anyway, enough rambling. Let's get to swatching!
Twisted Colors "The Sword"The Sword, inspired by the sword and the House of Godric Gryffindor, is a red sheer (is it quite a jelly? I'm not sure) polish with large gold glitters. It. is. GORGEOUS.
Three coats for this one. You could get away with two, and you could build up to four, but I wasn't quite satisfied with two and I didn't think four were quite necessary for me. The red is the most sheer out of any in this collection - I almost wish they were all this sheer!
Twisted Colors "The Diadem"The Diadem, inspired by Rowena Ravenclaw's House and Diadem, is a blue creme with a few different bronze glitters. (Twisted Colors also offers a version of The Diadem with silver glitters, to match the movies. For some reason, Warner Brothers decided to swap Ravenclaw's bronze for silver. I really adore Twisted Colors for offering both versions!)
I did three coats on this one. Two is perfectly opaque, but as usual, I wanted to get more depth with the layering.
Twisted Colors "The Cup"The cup, inspired by Helga Hufflepuff's House and Cup, is a yellow creme with many different types of black glitter and some sort-of-subtle sparkly glitters. I was actually kind of unimpressed by The Cup when I saw it online - mostly because those long, thin bar glitters looked weird to me - but I ended up liking it a lot better on my own nails than in the online photos!
The Cup is a bit harder to apply than the other polishes in this collection. The glitters tended to fall off the brush when I wiped off excess drips of polish into the bottle. Or, if they didn't, they would stick to the brush. It was a little difficult to get a nice distribution of the glitters, but not impossible or even all that frustrating - it just required a little bit more concentration while applying.
You can see lots of air bubbles in this color - that's because of how hard I had to shake the bottle almost between each nail. The glitters settled more quickly than the other polishes, and since I needed so many extra pieces of glitter on every brush stroke, I had to shake it up a lot.
Three coats to get the best coverage of glitter; two coats is enough to make it opaque.
Twisted Colors "The Locket"The Locket, inspired by Salazar Slytherin's House and Locket, is a green creme with many shiny silver glitters, and a few black ones.
I have no complaints about this one; the application was as easy as you can get with glitters of this size. It did photograph a liiiiiittle bit yellower than it is in real life, but all in all this whole collection photographed really well!
Three coats. Again, two coats is good and opaque, but three is more fun!
DIY Peel-off Basecoat resultsAfter wearing these polishes over my peel-off basecoats for a few days, they began to chip - even on nails that I remembered to wrap the tips. This is normally tragic, but in this case it's actually a good sign: chipping polish means it's not adhered to the nail, which is a good thing when your goal is to peel the polish off! I actually had an entire nail break off in one piece while I was helping my boyfriend's brother move.
I didn't have my good camera with me - sorry for the cell phone quality!
I found that it was easiest to peel the polish off if my hands were recently soaked in warm water - after a shower or while giving myself a nice, relaxing foot soak. My nails were totally fine and not super damaged after peeling the polish off! The yellow of The Cup did stain my nails a little bit, though. I guess two layers of watered-down glue form less of a protective coat than my usual 3-4 layers of base coats. The staining isn't too bad, though, so I'll definitely be using my glue basecoat for all glitter polishes and manis from here on out!