Sephora + Pantone Universe – ‘Reflecting Pond’ Jewel Lacquer (swatches, comparisons & review)

 

I have a confession to make: I don’t really know all that much about Sephora’s 2nd collaboration with Pantone, and I only picked up one item from the previous collection (which I STILL haven’t reviewed), but as soon as my eyes landed on ‘Reflecting Pond’, I was captivated. Something about murky, aquatically-themed hues just get to me every single time. Probably has something to do with the fact that I’m a water sign … or it could be the storm-tossed allure of this lacquer …

 


Sephora + Pantone Universe ‘Reflecting Pond’


Sephora + Pantone Universe ‘Reflecting Pond’


the beautiful opalescent box


 

‘Reflecting Pond’ is a jewel, and just as luxurious colour-wise. Starting with the opalescent box it comes in – which is pretty enough in its own right, the densely pigmented, medium-thick formula makes application almost effortless. The charcoal infused teal of the base colour is filled to the brim with ultra fine brilliant teal shimmer “dust”, along with some deep blue, scattered green & lavender/pink specks throughout, which lend some elusive indigo flashes to this shade (seen clearer in direct sunlight) and a complex depth of tone. Indoors turns ‘Reflecting Pond’ into a murky & blackened teal, leaving behind an almost metallic after-image (really weird and cool effect, actually), but I love how the sides of the nail look like a frame for the gorgeous center teal colour. Brush stroke-free and self-levelling, the final finish is somewhat dull; addition of top coat is an absolute must, as it literally brings this beauty to life.

The square bottle shape is a nice touch as well, made with heavy, sturdy glass and while the wand may seem a little long, I found the brush to be well formed, with just the right amount of length & flexibility to allow for a fuss-free application. Bonus: absolutely no staining upon removal. Coats applied: 2

Unique touch: on the back label of the box you’ll find a box with a colour swatch and a corresponding number, in case you want to paint your walls the same shade! According to Sephora:

What it is:
A thrilling collection of nail lacquers inspired by exotic gems, precious jewels, and vivid natural beauty. 

What it does:
Fall under the spell of the Alchemy of Color Collection, an enchanting collaboration between Pantone Universe and Sephora that marries the hottest shades of the season with exclusive formulation and finish. The collection includes a kaleidoscope of colors and each of the multi-dimensional lacquers feature an innovative texture and futuristic finish, from metallic, to sparkle, iridescent, and never-seen-before metallic matte. The formulas are long-wearing, chip-resistant, and promise full-color payoff. Bring the brilliant hues to life as you mix and match to create your own magic. 

What else you need to know:
This collection takes inspiration from Pantone’s View Colour Planner Autumn/ Winter 12-13 Book, predicting a radiant color breakthrough in fall 2012 and a leap into bright reds, energizing oranges, and sumptuous purples. Each formula is formaldehyde-free and dibutyl phthalate (DBP)-free.

*All swatches are with Seche Clear Base Coat and Seche Vite Top Coat, but I did notice some shrinking away from the nail edges after this step – an obvious sign of incompatibility.


in sunlight


alternate angle


indoors


in shade


with flash


 

Going through my collection of polishes, I came across several that are in the same colour family as ‘Reflecting Pond’, but I narrowed things down to Deborah Lippmann’s ‘Don’t Tell Mama’ – for being the closest in base tone, and Nailtini’s ‘Stinger’ (previous reviewed here) – for having a similar duo coloured effect. All swatches are with 2 coats of lacquer, as well as base & top coats. How they compared:

  • index finger: Deborah Lippmann ‘Don’t Tell Mama’ – the thinnest flowing formula, almost identical blackened teal base with a pine green ultra fine shimmer – no other colour flashes, the darkest in overall tone, very glossy natural finish
  • middle & pinkie fingers: Sephora + Pantone Universe™ ‘Reflecting Pond’
  • ring finger: Nailtini ‘Stinger’ – formula, flow & opacity similar to ‘Reflecting Pond’, underlying base shows more of a prune hue (1st coat), visible purple overtones (naked eye), much more prominent cobalt flash with shimmer leaning more towards emerald, superb glossy finish


in sunlight


alternate angle


indoors


in shade


with flash

 

Final thoughts: I am a total sucker for these types of shades; apart from its obvious brooding qualities, I love all the complexities of colour and tone that go into ‘Reflecting Pond’. The formula was unexpectedly thick, but very easy to work with nonetheless and even though you can almost get away with one coat, I highly recommend a second as it enhances the vivid colour of this beauty. I passed on the other 4 shades released – pretty hues, but nowhere near as eye-catching; I’m not sure at this point if they’re limited edition, but the collection is definitely a Sephora exclusive. The price seems to be quite fair as well, coming at CDN $11.00 for 11 ml/.37 fl oz, slightly more than an OPI but definitely less than a CHANEL. Definitely worth seeing with your own eyes – but be forewarned of its mesmerizing effect!


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