Polish Pickup: Mar 2020 Ancient History

Bee's Knees Lacquer, Cupcake Polish, Femme Fatale Cosmetics, Flirtin' Cosmetics, Great Lakes Lacquer, Lilypad Lacquer, Pahlish, Polish Pickup, PR, Scofflaw, Top Shelf Lacquer

*Disclosure: PR samples- I received these polishes free of charge in exchange for photography.*

Sale period: 6-9 March 2020

11 polishes (in this post)

The March PPU is coming at us with polishes inspired by ancient history! This is such a broad theme with so much potential inspiration.

Bee’s Knees: The Eagle Bearer

swatch bkl the eaglebearer 5

This one feels like a sister to a bunch of polishes in BKL’s ships (that’s fandom relation”ships”, not floating-on-water ships ๐Ÿ™ƒ) collection that recently released. Pastel multichrome that shifts pink/gold and filled with gold flakes. I love the colors of this one, and on my warm skin it can almost function as a neutral! It also looks gorgeous in overcast lighting, since the shimmer flattens out and the flakies become much more prominent. Love this polish.

3 coats + 1 coat of glossy top coat

swatch bkl the eaglebearer 6swatch bkl the eaglebearer 7swatch bkl the eaglebearer 8swatch bkl the eaglebearer 9

Cupcake: Bath House

swatch cupcake bath house 2

This bright aqua base color is so fun and lively. I think it leans ever-so-slightly more green than blue. The flakie distribution is very dense. You might be able to get away with two coats if you polish carefully. I found I had better control doing three thinner coats. They also dry faster, minimizing flakie-dragging.

3 thin coats + 1 coat of glossy top coat

swatch cupcake bath house 3swatch cupcake bath house 5swatch cupcake bath house 6

Femme Fatale: Lernaean Hydra

swatch ff lernaean hydra 2

I love my dark polishes, and this is such a good one. Deep purple-blue base with green shimmer, green/blue/purple UCC flakes, and the tiniest, finest green glitters that could possibly exist. Seriously, I thought those tiny green sparkles were a larger-particle shimmer! They’re stupid-hard to photograph, but they add so much dynamism to this polish! They sparkle so SO beautifully. I think you can see the scattered green sparkle best in the last macro photo. The green shimmer is also overall much stronger. The chrome flakies do tend to create bumps, so smooth them out as much as you can during application.

3 coats + 2 coats of top coat

swatch ff lernaean hydra 3swatch ff lernaean hydra 4swatch ff lernaean hydra 5swatch ff lernaean hydra 6

Flirtin’ Cosmetics: OHlympia

swatch flirtin' ohlympia 2

These kinds of bright pinks and purples always look the least consistent across different screens, so please note that it is a saturated pink-fuchsia base with purple-magenta shimmer. This polish also has adorable tiny raspberry microglitters that add a lovely sparkle. The glitters are so tiny that they add no texture, which is always a plus for me. This polish was a little bit sheerer than I was expecting from the bottle appearance.

3 normal/heavy coats + 1 coat of top coat

swatch flirtin' ohlympia 3swatch flirtin' ohlympia 4swatch flirtin' ohlympia 5

Great Lakes: Cuddling Continents

swatch gll cuddling continents 2

GLL’s done a couple polishes in this jelly base + red/green iridescent flake + holographic microflake combination now. There’s the violet sister, the green sister, and now this bright blue sister has arrived! The cool cobalt blue base contrasts the warm red/green flakies so well.

3 coats + 1 coat of top coat

swatch gll cuddling continents 3swatch gll cuddling continents 4swatch gll cuddling continents 5swatch gll cuddling continents 6

Lilypad: Ancient Iridescence

swatch lilypad ancient iridescence 2

Alright, so this polish…wow, the final result is beautiful, but getting these final photographs was definitely a process.

So the photography- I opted to photograph this polish in diffused light (as opposed to my usual setup, which uses direct light). In direct light, the flakies were just not showing up, and it really wasn’t effectively showcasing this polish. Just want to be upfront about this slight change in lighting setup.

And now the polish itself. As it came to me, it was quite thick, and it could probably achieve opacity in two brushed coats. But it was so thick that it was difficult to work with, and I personally prefer thinner formulas. So I added thinner. Quite a lot of thinner. So much that it became a three-coater. BUT, I was able to control the flakie distribution much better. During application, you MUST let each coat fully dry before applying the next coat. If you don’t, the flakies will drag around, lay on top of each other, and create a lumpy mess. You’ll still need two coats of top coat to smooth everything down for a flawless, glossy finish. Be patient with this polish, and you will reap the rewards.

3 thin coats + 2 coats of top coat

swatch lilypad ancient iridescence 3swatch lilypad ancient iridescence 4swatch lilypad ancient iridescence 5swatch lilypad ancient iridescence 6

The lighting really mattered for this polish. Indirect lighting on left, direct lighting on right. Hopefully you see why I didn’t want to shoot this polish using the setup on the right…you can’t see the flakies nearly as well, right? But in real life, you can definitely see all those flakies even in direct lighting, I promise!

I also wanted to see this polish matte. I shot these photos in direct light (my normal setup). Looks gorgeous this way as well.

swatch lilypad ancient iridescence 9 matteswatch lilypad ancient iridescence 10 matte

Lilypad: Rose Window

swatch lilypad rose window 2

Lilypad Lacquer is also bringing an effect topper! This topper looks like it has a clear base (maybe tinted a teensy bit darker) filled with color-shifting glitter, iridescent microglitter, multichrome flakies, and iridescent flakies. I can’t begin to name all the color shifts…just look at the photos ๐Ÿคฃ

I use this polish both as a topper (over white, black, and dark navy blue) as well as on its own on my ring finger.

3 coats solo + 2 coats of top coat


1 generous coat (as a topper) + 1 coat of top coat

swatch lilypad rose window 3swatch lilypad rose window 4swatch lilypad rose window 5

I also shot some images in diffused light to better show all the individual components.

swatch lilypad rose window 6swatch lilypad rose window 7swatch lilypad rose window 8

Pahlish: Al Ula

swatch pahlish al-ula 3

Pahlish was inspired by the ancient walled city of the same name. The polish is a lovely soft blue-leaning periwinkle with shimmer and iridescent flakes. It can streak a little if your coats are too thin, so be careful and work quickly.

3 coats + 1 coat of top coat

swatch pahlish al-ula 4swatch pahlish al-ula 5

Scofflaw: Leda and the Swan

swatch scofflaw leda and the swan 2

Scofflaw was inspired by the Greek myth of Leda. The official description gives the base color as salmon, but on my warm skin it looks definitively pink. I really like the combination with the gold-ish iridescent flakies and the violet shimmer. It’s a really interesting and wonderful color palette. This one doesn’t have any large glitters like Scofflaws usually do, so one coat of top coat will suffice to smooth everything over.

2 coats + 1 coat of top coat

swatch scofflaw leda and the swan 3swatch scofflaw leda and the swan 4

Top Shelf: The Beer of Yesteryear

swatch top shelf the beer of yesteryear 2

This polish has a soft green base color with velvety linear holo and various microflake shimmers. The linear holo effect is very visible but also has a lovely softness.

2 coats + 1 coat of glossy top coat

swatch top shelf the beer of yesteryear 3swatch top shelf the beer of yesteryear 5

In diffused light, the holo effect disappears, but the microflake shimmer becomes much more apparent.

swatch top shelf the beer of yesteryear 4

Top Shelf: If the Glass Fits

swatch top shelf if the glass fits 2

Top Shelf Lacquer is also bringing a special effect top coat. It is meant to be a quick-dry top coat with purple/pink/green shifting shimmer, so no additional top coat is technically required. I personally found the final finish to be less shiny than I prefer, so I’d personally recommend an additional layer of glossy top coat. I show this top coat as-is. It applies streak-free, which is always fantastic for shimmery polishes since sometimes shimmer can streak.

1 coat over various cremes

swatch top shelf if the glass fits 3swatch top shelf if the glass fits 4

Macros of this topper over black, dark grey, and pale pink cremes:

swatch top shelf if the glass fits collage

This is my largest PPU post to-date. I have enough items to warrant a nice wrap-up collage, don’t you think?

end collage with names

The March 2020 Polish Pickup shop opens on March 6 at 11am EST.

Polish Pickup shop (US):ย http://www.polishpickup.com/

Polish Pickup shop (UK):ย http://www.polishpickup.co.uk/

5 thoughts on “Polish Pickup: Mar 2020 Ancient History

    1. oh Kiz!! This is so amazing to hear (especially from you)…I added to this blog post in bits and pieces so by the time I published I could not bear to re-read anything even one more time. I’m so happy you enjoyed! โค


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