Monday, October 24, 2011

Readers' choice: Deep red shimmers comparison

Anyone care for a vampy red shimmer just in time for Halloween? I know my friend Karin does, and this is her request: a comparison of a few of them. I'm including full swatches of one: Sanguine by OPI. Now, I've heard mixed comments on the similarities of Sanguine and Royal Rajah Ruby from the same brand, but most seem to be convinced they are identical, and I'm personally guessing any differences might be due to formula variations only - with a good opaque coating, I'm fairly sure the differences may disappear completely. Anyhow, here's Sanguine, also known as Royal Rajah Ruby.

I did three coats here, mainly because Sanguine came in one of the infamous OPI mini bottles for Halloween last year, and the ergonomy of the brush and handle are... at best questionable. With the ordinary prowide brush you'll hopefully be getting in the full Royal Rajah Ruby bottle, I think that perhaps you'll get away with two coats. But damn... Isn't this one a stunner?!

I have a very complicated relationship with red shimmers, and I tend to pass on them in favour of cremes in the same color family, but this one gets a big, fat like.

What Karin was really asking for, was a comparison of some deep red shimmers to replace her OPI Romeo & Joliet she finds too warm. In my very narrow collection of red shimmers, these were the ones I found to be decent candidates:

China Glaze Branding Iron, OPI Midnight in Moscow, Sanguine, and Barielle Lava Rock. Magnify to check in slight more detail (although quite unfocused, sorry!). These deep shimmers are some work to photograph with my camera, and I had to retry a bunch of times, still, the photos in this post are the best I came up with.

Branding Iron has a brownish base and may still be too warm for Karin's liking, but it's a damn hot one. It's fairly similar to Sanguine/Royal Rajah Ruby, but I think the shimmer is even more vibrant. Midnight in Moscow has a charcoal base and is very dark, the shimmer is almost hidden and mostly visible in sunlight. Sanguine has a reddish base but is still pretty warm, but not at all brown. Lava Rock is interesting. There was a time when I thought of it as dupish to Midnight in Moscow, but it really isn't. The shimmer is rather different, and really, really hard to photograph correctly. It's a cooler kind of red, and in the sun it sparkles in many colors - I should really do a full swatch of it sometime. If you photograph it in an angled view, it looks like it's almost duochrome, though I believe it really isn't. The base is charcoal, but the shimmer is more on top than in Midnight in Moscow.

I decided to include some detail photos as well:

Yes, Lava Rock got a bunch of photos, and none of them hold up for a more detailed view. This one was hell to get on camera, I tell you. The sunny picture to the right reveals some of what I was rambling about above, how it tends to shift colors in certain angles - and it's not this warm in reality. The other two photos are closer to color accuracy, but still... Not really.

If I have to pick a favourite... I still wouldn't be able to. I think Midnight in Moscow is my least favourite though, and all the other ones are too hot to choose between. And now I'll have to stop writing before my brain fries completely.

Swedish word of the day:
hetta -noun heat


  1. Oh red! my favorite color, and i'm almost drooling over these deep reds! I have Branding iron, sanguine and RRR, and was thinking exactly in applying again RRR tomorrow.

  2. How nice of you to do this! Like Sakura, I too am drooling over these lovelies. While Midnight in Moscow is your least favorite, it's the easier one to find now as the others are all only available on the secondary market. I loved the entire collection Branding Iron is from - the Rodeo Diva from fall of 2008. It's one of my all time fav China Glaze collections where there was not one I would not wear in the whole group! I have a # of deep red shimmers, but looking at them, none are still being produced. There is one I was thinking of getting in China Glaze that is still being made. It's got a really odd name like Luba something - it's a deep burgundy (looks almost black in the bottle) with shimmer as well as some ruby red glass fleck in it. That one is still currently for sale in the CG classic grouping and is quite a good shade - I just cannot nail down the name off the top of my head. Maybe i can find it if I start to search but am in the middle of packing to leave for 4 weeks of surgery/hospital/recovery out of my area.

  3. Sanguine is a dupe for OPI Royal Rajah Ruby. Unripened is a dupe of Nicole by OPI Blues in the Night. Hope this helps!

  4. Beachgal, I think what you're talking about is Lubu Heels :)

  5. beachgal: Well, that's not entirely true. Actually, the only color of these ones that is no longer available from the manufacturer is Branding Iron. However, I easily find it on ebay for less than retail price. Royal Rajah Ruby is in OPI's core line, and Lava Rock is available from Barielle's site.

  6. Jag har jämfört RRR, Sanguine och Branding Iron på naglarna och på nagelhjul och de tre är identiska även om jag någonstans vill säga att BI är mer glödande. Det har jag inget fog för egentligen, den bara känns så. Det är alla fall tre galet vackra lack. Lava Rock hatar jag. Brunt är inte min melodi.

  7. Your friend, Karin, should check out Zoya, Jem. It walks the line between burgundy and aubergine, leaning slightly more burgundy. It's a stunner; similar to Lava Rock.

  8. wow I really like this color, it looks just amazing. I think this could be my favorite, thank you so much for this wonderful post


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