I don't usually review polishes. I guess I always write a review on my polishes when I post them, but I'm treating this as more of a formal review, hence the title. I'm just swatching the polishes and talking about the formula. Instead of waiting for me to wear these, I figured I'd do it all at once. I hate when I can't find swatches of cheaper polishes, so I hope this helps you decide if picking up this set is worth it!!
The 5 polishes in this set are:
The cap is NOT a vanity cap. You will be painting with the square cap, but I did not have any problem doing so. The brushes are oval and very slightly flattened. It is obvious that there are two sides to the brush for you to paint with because it is not round. Overall, the brushes were better than the spring set I reviewed, but two of them could still improve.
Scroll all the way down for photos of each polish with Golden Goddess top coat
2 coats Mod Mauve
This was the worst brush, but it wasn't that bad. It had one stray bristle that stuck out the side of the brush. But it was just one. This was also the widest brush of the 5, not necessarily a bad thing. It wasn't too wide. The end of the brush wasn't even, it was on a slight slant, which made it a little difficulty to paint evenly around my cuticles. But it still wasn't that bad.
Mod Mauve is a kind of chocolately mauve creme, kind of an auburn almost. Definitely looks different in different lighting. I don't think it's too "old" of a color. Something about it (the chocolately part?) makes it seem more current. Nice, simple.
The formula was smooth, not streaky but seemed uneven, then it self leveled and was not uneven. The consistency was great. Medium consistency, nicely pigmented. Not too bad at all!!
2 coats Royal Purple
This brush was fine. Royal Purple is a blue based fuchsia-violet with a shimmery sheen. The shimmer seems almost silvery in the bottle, but comes across fuchsia/purple on the nail. Very pretty.
The formula was FANTASTIC. Reminded me of the old, non 3 Free polishes (but it is 3 Free). Thin, easily workable but very pigmented despite it being thin and flowy. Smooth and not streaky at all. I like this formula better than mod mauve, but it's that formula difference between a creme and a shimmer. I find that it's not uncommon for them to be different and have their own qualities.
2 coats Red Velvet
This brush was a little thinner than Royal Purples. Not in a bad way, just an objective thing.
The color looks much richer with a second coat. I was skeptical when I saw the first. But with the second coat, it's a lovely, foil-y berry undertones red that I'm going to say is perfect for a darker winter/Christmas red. I liked Golden Goddess best over this color.
The formula was just like Royal Purple. Like exactly the same.
2 coats Metal Madness
This brush was going back to being like Mod Mauves, it had kind of a slant.
This is a charcoal base with holographic micro glitter. Very interesting. The glitter is more prominent in real life than in the photos.
The polish went on without problems. It does need two coats, it was kind of sheer with just one, but totally opaque with 2. Wasn't streaky, stayed even, thicker than Royal Purple and Red Velvet but seemed less pigmented, which is probably why the two coats is necessary.
This is a glitter top coat in the bunch. It will not become opaque, which is fine seeing as how I'm assuming that was not the intention of the polish.
It is well packed with gold micro glitter and it was round iridescent glitter. The round glitter isn't too plentiful when on the nail. Just painting it on gives you several pieces, but not a ton. They don't have a problem sticking to the brush, I just think there's SO much micro glitter and not as much of the round glitter. Not a bad thing, still pretty.
Here is Golden Goddess over all of the other colors:
Over Mod Mauve
Over Royal Purple
Over Red Velvet (my fav)
Over Metal Madness
So overall, is this set worth $5? ABSOLUTELY!!