LA Girl Groupie & Comparisons

What is it with cameras refusing to accurately capture purple?  Color correction for purple, especially if it's an indigo/violet sort of blue-ish purple, is a photography/blogger trick that I have not yet mastered.  Which is to say, some of these here shots of LA Girl's Groupie are less than accurate.

indoor CF lighting
Color accuracy for the polish was helped a whole lot by informing my camera we were taking pics in sunlight instead of indoors, which is a fail for color accuracy for my hide.  Oh well.  Groupie is a rich, saturated blue-leaning purple with plenty of blue and red shimmer particles.  There's a whole lot more blue than red, but they're both very much there.

outdoor, bright sunlight
Those aren't chips off the edge in the above shot, that's just how shiny this is (amped even more with topcoat).  The shimmers sparkle in most lighting conditions, and this polish never appears black.

late afternoon shady sunlight.  WAY more blue than IRL.
sparkles!  also way more blue than IRL.
The contrast of the sparkles from the underlying base color makes this one that definitely has a lovely lit-from-within sort of glow.  It's a much richer shade than the budget price LA Girl goes for.

indoor, indirect sunlight
All of which - the luxe color, the camera challenges - reminded me very much of Zoya Belinda, so clearly, a quick comparison was in order.

R-to-L: Zoya Belinda, LA Girl Groupie, ILNP Contraband
Right away from the bottle shot, 2 things are clear: none are 100% dupes, but these are all definitely sisters.  The base color is dead on for Belinda and Groupie, with Contraband just a hair darker.  All 3 have both red and blue shimmers.  Belinda is the smoothest of the 3, with much finer shimmer than either of the other two, with the shimmer leaning a little more toward red.  Shimmer particles in Groupie are a little larger, and lean more toward blue.  Contraband has the most distinct shimmer (but not at all chunky, or approaching micro-flakie territory), and the red & blue mix has been compared to that in Chanel Taboo.

same L-to-R as above: Belinda, Groupie, Contraband, 2 coats of each, no topcoat or cleanup.  again, i'm totally not this yellowed out, but this is close to color-accurate
All of what you see in the bottles translates to the nail.  Belinda has a pearly smooth finish, with a subtle flash of sparkle in brighter light, and has a flawless, nearly one-coater formula.  While Groupie and Contraband each needed their 2nd coats, all 3 are completely opaque at 2.  There's no cleanup on the above shot, so both Belinda and Contraband have a pretty ideal thickness and very easy to work with.

Do I need all 3?  Probably not, but they each have distinct charms.  Belinda wears like iron on me.  LA Girl is easily the cheapest of the three, so great as a base for nail art or flashy toppers.  The shimmer in Contraband is killer.  They're all good.

Rating:  4 out of 5.  Like Belinda, an amazing color, and you can't beat it for less than $5.

Where to buy:  LA Girl is a drugstore brand found at Rite Aid and plenty of online stores.

~Michelle

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