Thursday, July 24, 2014

Product Review: Ruffian Nail Lacquer (Shade: Relic)

By Randi Reed

Disclosure per FTC BlogDisclosure rules and The Cosme-Haul Pledge: This product was received in my Birchbox, as part of my regular subscription, which I pay for myself. The Birchbox invitation link at the end of this article earns Birchbox points toward my purchases when someone subscribes. (All Birchbox subscribers receive points when someone purchases from their referral link: a win-win for everyone!)

I always get excited when Ruffian Nail Lacquer introduces new colors. As a fashion company, Ruffian tends to come out with great shades, and their one-coat coverage makes them one of my favorite polishes to reach for when I want a really fast manicure. So, I was happy to find out one would be in my July Birchbox.

Blobs of Ruffian "Relic" applied at different angles in various light.
(Photo: Randi Reed / Cosme-Haul.)

Color: "Relic," part of the 2014 Rapture collection of Ruffian Nail Lacquers, is described on the Birchbox website as “a silvery taupe”. Halfway between champagne and lightly tarnished silver, the name "Relic" is perfect for it.

One thing I particularly like is that being more pale champagne than silver, depending on your skin tone, this shade is a lot more neutral than you might think. No “Tin Man” manicure here. (It would also look great as a pedicure, which, if you’re on the fence about a color, is always a great way to try a new shade.)

See how Relic is warmer than the Silver crayon?
(Photo: Randi Reed / Cosme-Haul.)

Texture and Application:
Ruffian Nail Lacquer’s texture has some “oomph” to it, which I like. When Ruffian promises one coat coverage, they mean it, with full pigmentation and little show-though of the nail texture. (None at all if you use a base coat.) This isn’t at all the typical thin, runny nail polish I’m seeing too often lately. Ruffian reminds me more of the texture of my favorite Revlon Nail Enamel, but with faster drying time.

Ruffian’s coverage claims to be streak-free, and for a metallic, I find that to be mostly true, provided you do a proper three stroke application. Resist the temptation to go over it, because you really won’t need to. Step awaaaaaay from the brush!

Applied at different angles to catch the light. The large, horozontal oval blob in the
middle is one coat. (Photo: Randi Reed / Cosme-Haul.)

The shape of the bottle top is easy to hold, as described on the Birchbox website, even when polishing with my non-dominant hand. I find the product really easy to control, and in writing this review, I've realized I don’t have to do as much cuticle cleanup when I use Ruffian. I think the bottle top plays a role in that.

As usual, I find Ruffian has about the same odor level as any other nail polish, or possibly a bit less. I’m sensitive to chemical odors, and it didn’t make me nauseous or trigger a migraine, so that’s a plus.

For its amount of substance, I continue to be impressed with the relatively short drying time of Ruffian Nail Lacquer. Between the one-coat coverage and the faster drying time, it had me out the door pretty fast.

For one-coat coverage, Ruffian wears fairly well. This stuff has some “bounce” to it, and without a top coat I find the chipping tends to be more gradual rather than I’ve observed with other brands.

For extra wear, I usually top my nail color with Revlon Extra Life No Chip Top Coat, and with it I get the same wear out of Ruffian that I typically do with multiple coats of other brands--about a week to ten days. I do keep my nails short, which lengthens the wear time by a few days, but I type, wash my hands often, and my place doesn't have a dishwasher, so my polish tends to get a workout.

Misc. Pros and Cons:
At 0.17 fl. ounces, the bottles are tinier than you’re probably used to for the same price, which is really the only thing negative I can say about Ruffian Nail Lacquer. But I can live with it, since Ruffian only takes one coat. I also find the small bottles handy for travel, and  the product tends to stay fresher, with less waste. And with their art deco style top, let’s face it, the bottles are really cute. They remind me of little perfume bottles, and for the space challenged, a collection of them would look fine corralled on a small tray on a vanity.

Would I buy this product again? Yes, definitely. You might not expect great quality nail polish from a fashion line, but Ruffian makes a great nail enamel, and I’ll be using this shade, “Relic,” a lot. It's also the base of my "Hollywood Blvd. Manicure".)

Score: 9 out of 10.

(Photo: Randi Reed / Cosme-Haul.)

(Photo: Randi Reed / Cosme-Haul.)

Available exclusively at Birchbox. If you’d like a Birchbox subscription, click here for an invitation:

(If you use this Birchbox invitation link to subscribe, I earn Birchbox points toward my purchases, as all Birchbox subscribers do for referrals. A win-win for everyone!)

For my review of Ruffian Nail Lacquer  in "Delirium" click here.

For the Hollywood Blvd. Manicure How-To, click here.

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