Picture Polish Illusionist & Comparisons

After playing around with Solar Flare, I wanted to move right on to another of my Picture Polish LEs, Illusionist.

indoor CF lighting
Illusionist was my fave from this collection before it got here, and it certainly didn't disappoint.  I still didn't feel the need for black nails in the springtime weather, so like it's sister, this is 3 super sheer coats of this polish (that's intended for layering over black).  The formula on this was perfect, utterly and completely self-leveling to a flawless glass-smooth finish even before topcoat.

outdoor, indirect late afternoon sunlight
All of the colors you catch in the bottle up there are readily evident on the nail, from a flashy aqua:

outdoor, direct afternoon sunlight
To a shimmery magenta:

same outdoor afternoon
And even picking up a hint of coppery gold at the edges:


Illusionist is still plenty flashy indoors, it definitely didn't need the sun to bring out the color play:

indoor office fluorescent lighting
Exactly like Solar Flare, the color-shifting shimmer particles are suspended in a sheer grey base.  While I thought that grey color muddied out SF's warm red and gold coloring, though, the grey compliments the cool magenta and aqua here rather attractively.  Especially with the holo particles (much more visible here than on SF) sparkling, Illusionist worn without undies is like a pastel version of galaxy nails in a bottle.

outdoor, indirect sunlight
Also like Solar Flare, I thought I had some similar colors in my stash.  Here we have INLP's Sirene and Hits Mari Moon Daring to compare to Illusionist with or without black.


In the bottle, Sirene's color shift is more obvious, but all 3 have an aqua heart that rings out to blue, purple/magenta, and gold on the edges.  Each one of these polishes were super sheer, and all three needed 3 coats each to get a good color.

the see-thru first coat for Sirene on the left and Daring on the right
All 3 shifted in a similar range from aqua to magenta.  For all the following pics, the index is Hits Mari Moon Daring, middle is Illusionist, ring is INLP Sirene, and pinky is 3 coats of Illusionist over one coat of Wet N Wild Black Creme.




Just like with Solar Flare, the sheerness of Illusionist means that when looking at it at all the angles where it's mostly see-thru, you are very obviously wearing black nail polish.  Daring looked to have a near-identical color shift to Illusionist over black: same dusty quality to the aqua, and warmth of magenta on the angle, only without having as stark a look as with black undies.  Sirene had a more extreme color shift, more intensely aqua and purple, than the other two, but in each angle had one other polish that looked 95% the same.  The other major difference was in finish: Illusionist is glass smooth, while both Daring and Sirene had obvious brushstrokes by comparison.

As before, the swatch sticks gave a more consistent base for comparison:

L-to-R:  Sirene, Illusionist plain & over black, Daring
Rating:  4 out of 5 stars.  I loved Illusionist.  Though it was sheer, the colors are flashy and sparkle differently in all sorts of light, and I really liked the way it looked no matter if it was see-thru or brightly shimmery at the time.  It also wore great - the chips you can see on the Illusionist nail were because I'd worn this glassy jelly for 4 days at the time, and it looked perfect up until I had time to do the comparison pics (of course).

Where to buy:  PP's list of international stockists.

~Michelle

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