Thursday, February 13, 2014

Valentine Week: Essie Big Spender + HARE polish Test Your Love!

REALLY excited for today's post for two reasons, mostly because I miraculously have been able to post every day this week. But also ... I think you'll enjoy this combination!

I've had Essie Big Spender since the spring of 2010 (I actually bought this in an Essie B2G1 at Ulta when I got Essie Playa del Platinum), but for some reason I never wore it. The Resort 2010 collection had just come out and I wasn't sure if I wanted Splash of Grenadine, so I opted for Big Spender instead because to my eye, it was an exact match for one of my favorite skirts. Sadly, I no longer fit in this skirt because I am at my "scary weight"TM Steff, so having this color on my nails will have to do until I lose some of my chunk. Let's call a spade a spade, friends: I'm chunky, and this nail polish is beautiful!

Shown here are three coats of Big Spender, topped with NYC Grand Central Station.

In the bottle, Big Spender looks a pinch warmer than it actually is. I was happy to find that it was in fact quite cool on the nail. I don't know why, but I LOVE colors like this on me and the formula was perfect. Definitely keeping this one.

Big Spender has been around just a little longer than I've been into nail polish. I don't know if Essie had a name for its Fall 2008 collection, but that's when this originally came out. Since then, it's made its way into the permanent line -- I want to say both in retail and salon displays -- so it's very easy to find.

BTW, here is what I think of when I hear the words "big spender."

That, and "HEY, BIG LOBSTER" from "Futurama."

So, great. This is gorgeous. But then I remembered I've been wanting to try HARE polish Test Your Love! for a while, only it's too sheer to wear on its own (to me, anyway). I figured Big Spender would make a great base color, and rushed to experiment.

This is three coats of Test Your Love! + NYC Grand Central Station over Big Spender.

Ugh, my hands and cuticles are so dry. I'm so sorry.

As Anna would say, this is MAJ. The flakie effect was nice after two coats, but I piled on oooooooone more because I wanted to see if it it would add any more depth to this look. It did, a little bit. And Test Your Love! has a slightly warm base, so it warmed up Big Spender somewhat.

Only recently have I begun to be interested in flakie toppers, so I have to note that Test Your Love! was really easy to work with. It dried smoothly on the nail, which was nice. I think my only problem with it was that I prefer polishes that can be built up to opacity. Additionally -- and this is true of glitter toppers -- I tend to prefer layering topper polishes that can go over almost any color. I'm not super imaginative, and I don't see myself being able to layer Test Your Love! over anything that isn't pink or fuchsia or raspberry, so ... into the blog sale pile it goes.

Test Your Love! was part of the four-piece Coin Operation collection from last fall. This one might not have been a total win for me, but I still have my eye on Peepshow Magique and Zoltar Speaks -- those, I might be able to have more fun with. However, you still can nab Test Your Love! on the HARE polish Etsy for $10 or on Llarowe for $12. HARE is one of my favorite indie brands, so I'm still glad I was able to try this one.

What did you guys think of this Valentine layering combination? I thought it was fun to try something different this week. And I'm glad I finally tried both polishes, since who knows HOW LONG I would have waited otherwise! (This could be said of everything I blogged in the past week, though.)

Thanks for reading, and come back tomorrow for Shopping My Stash. I'm pretty excited for this month's pick. :)


  1. OMG this is fantastic. SO PRETTY. I definitely see why you love these kinds of colors on you, and that HARE is awesome :O I am lemming Zoltar Speaks so harddddd.

    1. NAAAAAAAZ, baby! How are you???! I was thinking about you the other day when I was looking for some nailspiration. :)

      Thank you! :D I hope you get that one ... I think you would like it!!!

  2. Gooooorgeous!! Definitely going on my wish list!

  3. Test Your Love is gorgeous! I love the base you chose for it too. I have Peepshow Magique but the one I want the most is Zoltar Speaks. That one looks amazing!

    1. Thanks, Melissa! Ohhhhhh, Peepshow Magique. DO WANT.


Thank you for checking out my little nail blog! I do read and appreciate your comments and/or feedback, although it might take me a few days to get back to you. Time-sensitive inquiries should be directed to my e-mail address (rachswatched@gmail).

Please be polite and respectful when responding to others' comments in a post; if you are rude, I will delete your comment and Hannibal Lecter will eat you. Please don't leave spam comments with blog links -- it's tacky and I don't do it. Neither should you.