Awhile back I mentioned I was looking for a retro creme red nail polish, and you all had a bunch of suggestions. Here are some winners, with the caveat/explanation that I started with what was easiest to find locally rather than purchasing online.
Cheery cherries – the sort of bright, retro red you can imagine on a set of 1940s dishtowels. These reds are great on me and would be fun in the summer on my toes. Winners: Sephora/OPI And A Cherry on Top, Sally Hansen Cherry Red (a fab red for, like, $2.39?!), OPI Red.
Classic deep vixen red – Revlon Raven Red got rave reviews from several of you. I admit, I don´t think it´s my best red. It’s slightly brown on me, and would look better on someone with a little darker or warmer skin tone than mine. Having said that, it is indeed a gorgeous color, and I´ve gotten compliments when wearing it. Another gorgeous deep vixen that isn´t as dark: Sephora/OPI Personal Shopper. Yowza.
Revlon was having a BOGO when I bought Raven and the colors were pretty picked over, so I wound up with Revlon Red. It´s funny – on its own, Revlon Red is a great color. It´s a bright, slightly warm generic red that´s like the red crayon in the box of Crayolas. The problem is, if you´ve spent much time playing in reds, you can come up with colors that are so much better, even though on some level it´s practically splitting hairs. Revlon Red is a perfectly fine emergency red purchase, but it doesn´t have the shine or the depth of a great red. Ultimately I decided to Franken it into a deeper red with the addition of some black. (Frankening hint gleaned from my art background – you can darken a color much, much faster than you can lighten it. I add black two drops at a time and shake shake shake.) I wound up with a color I like much better.
Blue red – y´all were right, OPI´s I´ve Got the Blues for Red is an excellent color. It looks a little cool on warmer skin tones but on me it is a true, neutral classic red that is neither bright nor vixen-y dark. It´s gorgeous. I also had difficulty finding it, one site having labeled it as discontinued, so if you´re in love with that color you might want to scrounge up a backup. Sephora/OPI Le Beau was an interesting, lighter blue red.
And my own personal winner is … OPI Malaga Wine! I tried on so many colors, and while the differences can be subtle, the final effect can be huge. I wound up with Malaga Wine sort of by, um, accident on an order of spring pastel creme nail polishes (yeah, stay tuned for that) because you mentioned it and I´d noticed it on several color wheels on Nailgal and thought it looked pretty.
Malaga Wine isn´t what you´d expect from the name – it isn´t purple, or maroon-brown. On me (fair skinned/cool toned) it is precisely the color I had in my mind´s eye for my classic retro red. It´s deep rather than bright, a true red rather than blue or orange, and stays red even in dim indoor lighting, rather than going vampy. My only minor complaint is that it took three thin coats to achieve the opacity I wanted, rather than the two I usually get from OPI, but I might have a bum bottle. At any rate, the color is stunning – as dark a red as you can get and still be red. It gives me movie star hands.
I´ll drop an additional bit in here – one of you mentioned a MAC Lippie named Classic Dame. And I was beside myself – how did I not own something with such a fabulous name?!? Well, because it´s been discontinued, that´s why. It was part of their Mattene collection, so it´s in a thin tube and it´s a matte finish, with a color somewhere between Brave Red and Russian Red. I got busy and found one online (eBay, but there are other etailers). It.Is.Killa. Do I need another red? Um, at this point, probably no. Do I regret my purchase? Not even a little.
So. Tune in Monday for more about dames.
cherry image: sweetgaldecals.com