Great Indie Polish Mission of 2015

So some of you may know that 2015 was the year I wanted to challenge myself to branch out from the tried & true indie brands that I loved in 2014. I really wanted to discover new brands to love. I tried a lot of brands in 2015 – 51 in total (a few tried & true brands, but mostly new-to-me brands)! I still have not made it through the list of indies I wanted to try – at last count I have 17 indie brands left. (Read through all the way to the end for the list of brands I’d still like to try!)

When I bought from an indie brand, I put that indie into one of four mental categories, depending on many factors but including (in order of importance to me): first impressions, shipping time, polish performance, customer service, packaging effort, pricing. Here are the categories they were separated into:

  • Yes, I will buy again whenever possible
  • Yes, I will buy again after going through the list
  • Maybe I will buy again, depending on many factors (improvement in polishes/customer service/TAT, sales, polishes offered, etc)
  • Not likely to buy from again

Several people expressed interest in seeing this list and so I’m presenting it here to you. For the purposes of this post, you’ll see a “yes”, “no”, or “maybe” if I’ll purchase again (or not).

This list does not include press samples received from brands – only purchases. I purchase the majority of my polishes that I showcase on this blog and I’m not a rich person, so I need to be judicious in my spending. This list is my opinion only and may differ from experiences you had with any of the below indies. For the most part, I did not let a brand know I was a blogger when I purchased from that shop (unless it’s a brand that already knew!); I use a different email account for purchases that does not reflect my blog name.

I do not claim that my experience with the following brands are the totality of that brand – only sharing my experience with the brand and its polishes. IOW – please don’t get mad at me if I didn’t have the same experience with your favorite indie as you have had! And I’m always up for changing my mind! 🙂 (Just don’t tell me all the ways I’m wrong in the comments – perhaps limit it to one or two ways 😛 )

Without further ado, in alphabetical order, all the indie brands I purchased from in December 2014-December 2015. Shop websites are linked in the shop names (wherever possible). If I remember how the shop packaged their items, and/or how long it took to ship (if I could retrieve that info, I did), I’ve included that information.

Alchemy Lacquers
How many polishes purchased: 4
Packaging effort: shop sticker included, business card, each polish wrapped individually w/bubble wrap, color coordinated tissue paper & polish name sticker
Time To Ship: 3 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Damn near perfect formula, and gorgeous polishes. TAT was amazing as well!

ALIQUID Lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 8
Packaging effort: shop sticker included, bubble wrap, business card
Time To Ship: between 3-5 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: Gloss48 and Aliquid Lacquer’s site
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Inventive polishes, great formula, great CS

Arcane Lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 2
Packaging effort:
Time to Ship:
Third Party Order: Yes, Color4Nails
Purchase again:
Additional comments: Just ordered on 12/31

Bad Bitch Polish
How many polishes purchased: 1
Packaging effort: polish came in individual box, business card included
Time To Ship: skewed because my package was re-routed to TN from CA, then came to MT
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: I haven’t yet tried the polish I’ve purchased, but my first impressions of this brand have been great.

Baroness X
How many polishes purchased: 12
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card
Time To Ship: 3-7 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Customer service is out of this world! Demetria has really impressed me with her customer service and her polishes.

Bear Pawlish
How many polishes purchased: 1
Time To Ship: Pre-order
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: I have heard that sometimes orders take awhile to ship, which is why I’m hesitant to order again.  A good TAT is high on my list of important criteria.

B Squared Lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 6 (EDM collection)
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: No, shop closed.
Additional comments:

Carpe Noctem Cosmetics
How many polishes purchased: 9
Packaging effort: business card, invoice, bubble wrap
Time To Ship: 3+ weeks from purchase to door (both orders)
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: If shipping time improves, I will order again. An extra mini polish was included in my last order as an apology since it took so long to ship. (Edit: I forgot, I also received an upgrade of the bottle sizes I bought as well.) Responsive customer service. I do love her polishes, no complaints there!

Celestial Cosmetics
How many polishes purchased: 7
Third Party Order: Color4Nails
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: I haven’t yet seen another polish I need to have from this brand.

Color4Nails
Packaging effort: bubble wrap
Time To Ship: 3-4 days from purchase to door
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional Comments: C4N is a third party seller with a great variety of worldwide polish brands offered. The fan group is interactive and people in the fan group get offers before the general public.

Colors by Llarowe
How many polishes purchased: 3
Packaging effort: bubble wrap
Time To Ship: Pre-order
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Not likely
Additional comments: Polishes were a little thick for my liking. I have not yet seen another “must have” polish from them yet.

CrowsToes
How many polishes purchased: 5
Third Party Order: llarowe and Edgy Polish
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Unique polishes and color combinations. I’ve never had a problem with formulas on CT polishes.

Cult Nails
How many polishes purchased: 8+
Packaging effort: bubble wrap
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: No, shop closed
Additional comments: Why did I come to this brand so late? Lovely cremes and interesting glitter polishes.

Dance Legend
How many polishes purchased: 4
Third Party Order: llarowe
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments:

Darling Diva Polish
How many polishes purchased: 12
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card
Time To Ship: 3-5 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: One of the fastest shippers in the indie world. Polishes are beautiful, and the shop carries a good mix of finishes. Carrie is awesome!

Delush Polish
How many polishes purchased: 6
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: I adore their crellies!

Different Dimension
How many polishes purchased: 6
Packaging effort: bubble wrap
Time To Ship: 8 days from purchase to door (from DD’s site)
Third Party Order: llarowe and through DD’s website
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Gorgeous polishes. They are a little spendy but worth it.

Digital Nails
How many polishes purchased: 2 plus multiple purchases of Ain’t Nobody Got Time For That quick dry top coat
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card, usually a candy, handwritten thank you on invoice, last order included a magnet
Time To Ship: average of 3-4 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order:  no
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: I adore the top coat. It’s my Holy Grail.

Edgy Polish
How many polishes purchased: 1
Packaging effort: bubble wrap
Purchase again: Yes
Additional comments: Edgy Polish is a third party seller, with worldwide polish brands. I ordered a shop exclusive CrowsToes from her. I received this polish from Sweden faster than I received polishes from in the States!

ellagee
How many polishes purchased: 4
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Laura puts out some very creative polishes! She also runs a great fan group.

Elevation Polish
How many polishes purchased: 13
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card
Third Party Order: llarowe and EvP’s website
Purchase Again: No
Additional comments: There was a huge blow-up with EvP this fall and while I’m not going to go into details (they can be found elsewhere), I don’t believe in this brand anymore and am not willing to support it with my money.

Emily de Molly
How many polishes purchased: 2
Packaging effort:
Time to ship:
Third Party Order: Yes, Color4Nails
Purchase again:
Additional comments: Just ordered on 12/31

Enchanted Polish
How many polishes purchased: 2
Packaging effort: individual box, shipped in a small box
Time To Ship: Pre-order
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: Still awaiting order as of this writing

Esmaltes Da Kelly
How many polishes purchased: 2
Third Party Order: Color4Nails
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: Both polishes were more gritty than I expected. Texture polish isn’t my favorite so I might try this brand again. On the plus side, the price is good for the bottle size!

Fair Maiden Polish
How many polishes purchased: 10
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card
Time To Ship: 5-7 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Polishes can be thicker than I really like, but they put out lovely finishes. Good customer service and another great fan group.

Fancy Gloss
How many polishes purchased: 7
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card
Time To Ship: between 6-9 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Jackie has some very unique thermals, and runs an awesome fan group. She’s had some troubles with re-stocks before but she does her best to try to get everyone the polishes they want.

Femme Fatale Cosmetics
How many polishes purchased: 2
Third Party Order: Color4Nails
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Gorgeous finishes. They also now have a US warehouse so I can buy direct from them.

Firecracker Lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 2
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card
Time To Ship: 7 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: I did have a little trouble with the formula of one of the polishes, but both polishes are very pretty. Pricing for creme polish is actually reasonable ($7.50) which I really appreciate!

Frenzy Polish
How many polishes purchased: 4
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card
Time To Ship: 11 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: The formula on the polishes I purchased kept getting thicker as I used them. Unique colors though, and responsive to customers.

Girly Bits Cosmetics
How many polishes purchased: 6
Packaging effort: bubble wrap
Time To Ship: Shipping comes from Canada, longer than US indies, obviously.
Third Party Order: llarowe and GB’s website
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Pam/social media team is so great about sharing manis on their social media pages! She runs contests in the fan group, she’s always encouraging bloggers and customers alike in their manis. It’s really refreshing.

Glam Polish
How many polishes purchased: 2
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Not likely
Additional comments: Nothing wrong with polishes or my purchase, I wasn’t super wowed for whatever reason when I purchased my two. I haven’t yet seen another polish from them that has convinced me to give them a second try.

Glitter Gal Cosmetics
How many polishes purchased: 21
Third Party Order: llarowe (link above is Color4Nails)
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: Their holo polishes are really lovely, but I find the (regular) pricing to be a bit high considering the size.

Gunpowder Lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 3
Packaging effort: bubble wrapped inside felt bag, business card included
Time To Ship: 5 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: Polishes were a bit thicker than I like. I really love their cuticle oil & applicator. If offered separately, I’d purchase that.

Jade
How many polishes purchased: 2
Third Party Order: llarowe
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: I love the polishes, and the brushes are perfection.

KBShimmer
How many polishes purchased: 16
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, extra glitters, usually a sample of something they offer in the shop
Time To Ship: 3-4 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: no
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: One of the fastest shippers in the indie world. You can’t beat their prices or their selection of polishes. Earlier this year I had purchased polishes and chai lotion. I had a bad reaction to the lotion and contacted Christy about it. She told me to send it back (which I did, late; I blame pregnancy brain), she refunded my entire order (not just the polishes) and sent me a new lotion of my choice. Talk about amazing service!

Lilypad Lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 5
Third Party Order: llarowe
Purchase Again: Not likely
Additional comments: They’ve just fallen off my radar, tbh.

Love, Angeline
How many polishes purchased: 3 for a swap, plus nail vinyls
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, in a box
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: conflicted
Additional comments: I ordered polishes and vinyls for a gift exchange early this year. Polishes came fine but I was missing the vinyls. I emailed right away, received a response (that day) that new ones would be sent out priority (because it was for a gift exchange and I needed to meet a deadline). A week later, I hadn’t received them yet and she offered to send them directly to my giftee. Many emails back & forth which were a few days after I emailed her (every time) and finally about a month since the original email, I asked for a refund on the vinyls; she refunded my money for entire purchase (which was great!) because the vinyls never showed up (she said she re-sent it to me, which got lost, then sent another to my giftee which was lost). I was never provided a tracking number for either package (though I was told I would get tracking). I ended up purchasing vinyls elsewhere for my giftee. I have heard great things about Love, Angeline before this experience and after, so I’d like to try them again but am hesitant.

Lucky 13 Lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 4
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card
Time To Ship: 2 weeks from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: Perhaps if shipping times improve, I do like the unique polishes and finishes.

Model City Polish
How many polishes purchased: 6+ (my invoices aren’t clear)
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Beautiful polishes, great formula, no complaints.

Ninja Polish
How many polishes purchased: 3
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: I just haven’t seen another polish that I need.

Nvr Enuff
How many polishes purchased: 2
Packaging effort: Packed with tissue paper & ribbon, candy included, business card included
Time To Ship: Pre-order
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: When I received the wrong polish, I emailed them and within hours I had a response & a new shipping notice. Great customer service!

Octopus Party Nail Lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 5
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card
Time To Ship: One was pre-order, one was not. Pre-order from 17 days from purchase to door. Other order was 3 days from purchase to door.
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Every time I think the holo polishes by OPNL are just regular, I buy them and am proven wrong. Plus the formula really is amazing. If you’re into haikus and other octopus-related things, join the fan group!

Pahlish
How many polishes purchased: 41
Packaging effort: heavy bubble wrap in non-padded envelope
Time To Ship: 5-7 days from purchase to door (outside of pre-orders)
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Pahlish is one of my very first true indie loves. They’re always tops in my book.

Polish ‘M
How many polishes purchased: 9
Time To Ship: 3-4 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Polishes are drop dead gorgeous, shipping is fast, customer service is great. Michelle is so responsive in her fan group and tries hard to please her customers. There are fan group exclusives and other extras as well.

Potion Polish
How many polishes purchased: 2
Time To Ship: 3 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: No, shop closing.
Additional comments: If shop wasn’t closing, I’d be purchasing whenever possible. The polishes are gorgeous, the shipping was awesome, and I had a nice first impression.

Pretty & Polished
How many polishes purchased: 23
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card, beauty boxes come with a coupon code card
Time To Ship: 3-7 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: My last beauty box wasn’t shipped when it should have, but Chelsea had it fixed within hours. Chelsea also has started a cancer care box program to give back and I think that’s pretty great.

Pretty Serious Cosmetics
How many polishes purchased: 7
Packaging effort: Each polish in individual box, whole order wrapped in bubble wrap
Time To Ship: 9 days from purchase to door (skewed because of holiday weekend)
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: I haven’t actually tried the polishes yet (recently bought).

Renaissance Cosmetics
How many polishes purchased: 4
Time To Ship: Shipping from Canada
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: Shop is closed as of this writing. Polishes were a bit thicker than I like. Maker was responsive with questions on collections though!

Reverie Nail Lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 5
Time To Ship: 16 days from purchase to door (purchased during a sale)
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Not likely
Additional comments: One polish was fairly thick, other polishes had sinking glitters that were hard to apply. I also was not aware it would take so long to ship during the sale.

Rica Polish
How many polishes purchased: 3
Time To Ship: 4 days from purchase to door
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: I haven’t yet tried the polishes I bought. Higher shipping prices have also kept me from buying again.

Scofflaw Nail Varnish
How many polishes purchased: 11
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, and cardboard stamped containers for each polish with cord in a bow
Time To Ship: 3-5 days from purchase to door (outside of pre-orders)
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Yes
Additional comments: Scofflaw has some of the most unique color combinations in the indie world, in my opinion. Outside of pre-orders, she also ships insanely fast.

Serum No 5
How many polishes purchased: 1
Third Party Order: llarowe
Purchase Again: No
Additional comments: I didn’t have a good first impression in an interaction with the maker but as a blogger not a customer, not this year but last year. I shared a post of polishes I used and was publicly given advice to look at other blogger’s post on how to take GITD photos. I felt patronized, when I was really just trying to share my excitement over the polishes I had purchased and blogged. I know that perception is everything, and the maker perhaps didn’t mean for her advice to come off the way it did. I tried to get past it by purchasing another polish (from a llarowe sale) and blogging about it, but I just couldn’t. I own up that is one of my failings that it’s hard for me to shake hurt feelings off. (Aww yes, my poor feelers, even us bloggers have them!)

Smitten Polish
How many polishes purchased: 1 (Hella Holo Customs polish)
Packaging effort: bubble wrap
Time To Ship: Pre-order
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: I haven’t yet seen another “must have” polish to buy. I do love the “punny” names of the polishes though!

takko lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 2
Third Party Order: Yes, llarowe
Purchase Again: Not likely
Additional comments: Higher prices for smaller bottles, restock madness are 2 reasons I will probably not buy another takko.

Top Shelf Lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 3
Packaging effort: bubble wrap, business card, 2 wine glass “markers” with each order
Time To Ship: One order was a pre-order, one was not. 7 days from purchase to door for the pre-order.
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: One polish was patchy formula, one was almost perfect formula, one I haven’t used yet. Packaging is really fun and goes with the whole brand look.

Vapid Lacquer
How many polishes purchased: 3
Packaging effort: bubble wrap in an envelope and little animal statues (unicorn & polar bear so far), invoice w/handwritten note, piece of candy, business card, shop sticker
Time To Ship: One polish was pre-order, 2 polishes (1 order) were not (from purchase to door: 2+ weeks)
Third Party Order: No
Purchase Again: Maybe
Additional comments: The pre-order ended up being longer than I expected, but the maker had several things go wrong all at once, I believe. (I think it had to do with bottle shipments?)

WingDust
How many polishes purchased: 3
Third Party Order: Yes, llarowe
Purchase Again: No
Additional comments: All three were crelly type polishes and I found it hard to get some of the larger glitters out. They just weren’t to my taste.

If you’re still here after reading through this, I commend you! Also, I hope that I didn’t offend anyone – something like this list is hugely subjective to my own experiences and I realize that. My stand out brands of the year are: Alchemy Lacquers, Baroness X, Darling Diva Polish, KBShimmer, OPNL, Polish ‘M, and Pretty & Polished. If you’re interested,  the indies I still would like to try in 2016 are listed below. Let me know in the comments your experiences this year with indies and if you have any recommendations!

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Indies Still To Try
Anonymous Lacquer
Bliss Polish
Doctor Lacquer
Ever After
Glitter Daze
Great Lakes Lacquer
Loaded Lacquer
Lollipop Posse Lacquer
Midwest Lacquer
Moo Moo’s Signatures
Native War Paints
Nire’s Desires
Paint Box Polish
Parrot Polish
Shleee Polish
Starrily

Edit – polish brands that have been recommended in the comments:
FUN Lacquer
Eat Sleep Polish
Emerald + Ash
Black Dahlia Lacquer
ILNP
The Lady Varnishes
Polish My Life
Polished For Days
Noodles Nail Polish
Honey Bunny Lacquer
Nail Hoot
Northern Star Polish
Loaded Lacquer
Drip Drop Nail Paint
Painted Polish
CDB Lacquer
Pipe Dream Polish
Whimsical Ideas by Pam

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87 thoughts on “Great Indie Polish Mission of 2015

  1. Wonderfully informative, yet concise, post. I’m always looking for new-to-me indies to try out within my budget constraints (thanks to being in the UK, I tend to pay more to USPS than the makers!), and this helps to no end. Plus, I get very excited when anyone says they like Alchemy Lacquers as it’s my indie love of 2015!

  2. Wow, wow, wow! What a great post! Thank you for being so committed to this and presenting it in such a great format!
    You are one one those bloggers that puts a lot of effort into your posts all the time (I always notice this). I will definitely be referring to this post when making ‘new to me’ Indie purchases this year. Well done!

  3. This post must have taken a long time to plan out and be written out but the effort is truly appreciated. You’ve tried out so many indie brands in 2015 and it was great hearing your thoughts on them.

  4. Loved, loved this post. Some of my own no buys were confirmed. It looks like you did a lot of work in bringing this list to fruition. Thank you.

    You simply must try ILNP in the coming year. Barbara is fantastic and she is releasing a new Birthstone collection today. I am not a compensated reviewer or anything just an extremely satisfied customer.

  5. oh man, wait til you try Starrily, OPNL is my absolute fave indie but for glitter insanity, Starrily takes the cake!! Have you tried FUN Lacquer? I have recently become addicted to their polish.

  6. This is a fantastic post! Concise and to the point while still giving consumers the information they are looking for. I totally agree with you on your favs (haven’t tried a few of the brands) and am sad that Wingdust didn’t work out for you (although I’m a bit obsessed with her glitter crellies and jellies. lol).

    If you haven’t tried them yet, I’d suggest Eat. Sleep. Polish. and Emerald & Ash.

  7. Congratulations on a great blog post! Interesting, I decided to stick mostly with the indie brands I knew and live in 2015. I added a few and there are still a few more I’ll like to add in 2016. I just have to keep an open mind!

  8. What a great post! I’ve been thinking about doing something like this on my blog for 2016. I’ve added a few brands of the ones to try list now!

  9. Very cool post! I do have a suggestion for future posts like this. Maybe list how long from purchase to the maker shipping the polish (not creating the label, but the package being accepted by the post office), instead of getting to your door. Because then it takes USPS out of the equation as well as where in the country a maker is located relative to you. And 41 Pahlishes girl! I feel you though, they’re in my Top 5 too.

  10. Thorough! I’m excited to try my first Smittens, Alchemy and Frenzy polishes. I also need Baroness X! Hoping to get Potion Polish before it disappears. Celestial is one of my favorite brands, but I wasn’t excited about any of the collections recently either.

  11. May I recommend Whimsical Ideas by Pam polishes? See her Facebook page for ordering information. I adore her polishes.

    I agree on your need to try Shleee, Baroness-X was new to me and I was highly impressed.

  12. What a great read, very informative. I think you’ll like Loaded Lacquer, Heather is very consistent in the formulas. I love Noodles Nail Polish, Drip Drop Nail Paint, Painted Polish, Girly Bits, CDB Lacquer, Frenzy, and Pipe Dream Polish!!

  13. WOW!! What a super post! I love all the information you included. Very informative.

    But, why oh why did B Square have to go?? I love their polish!!

    And I really appreciate your candor! I wish more nail polish peeps would be more honest when they get mediocre service and/or products! I know we want to help and encourage the indie brands, but we need to do that by providing honest reviews.

  14. This is a great post, Jessica! Well thought out, great detail and just all around a beyond exceptional! I’m a little bias but, some of my favorites are yours too. Northern Star Polish is a great indie brand as well!

  15. Great read and even when it hurts, sometimes honest feedback about issues can help a brand…assuming they take constructive criticism. My first indie purchase was a bit meh but I really have been happy with my few brands. I haven’t ventured much out of my circle and this list gives me some ideas.

  16. Great post!! I have to agree I am not the biggest fan of Glam Polish…I eagerly purchased their Lord of the Rings collection and was massively disappointed. Many of the polishes in the collection are basically the same (slight differences here and there) and the colors did not represent the names in the least! I had to purchase from their Big Cartel site so I paid exorbitantly for shipping…

    And, on top of everything else, the formula wasn’t anything to write home about….definitely nothing special there!

  17. Such a wonderful and informative post! I get how some experiences might be incidental and we all have different things we value, but overall I see a lot of things that confirm my personal feeling for most of these brands, though I haven’t tried nearly as much of them as you have!

  18. Oh, and I am currently waiting for my first order from NWP – so far the customer service seems top notch, so I am very curious about the rest of my experience :).

  19. I’m going to recommend Polished For Days. They’re new (2015 I believe), and the polishes I’ve purchased are fantastic. Shipping time is amazing too. Also going to recommend LynBDesigns (easily largest of my collection of indies), Noodles Nail Polish and Honey Bunny Lacquer. Honey Bunny doesn’t always have very good pics on etsy, but I’ve been pleased with the colors and consistency. I’d recommend Hit Polish Nail Lacquer too, but her shop is closed right now and I’m not sure when she’ll be opening again.

    Smitten is changing the name to Dreamland, something to do with being denied trademark for Smitten Polish

    I see you’re wanting to try Starrily, I’ve ordered three times, first was a pre-order, took nearly six weeks, so after that I thought I’d just buy what was available… three weeks and four weeks. And that’s the time to get them to the PO. They’re great one coat polishes, but that’s just too long for me

  20. Thank you very much for your honest review! I will definitely take your remarks into consideration and work on the formula! Kudos for such a thought-out, well put together post. ❤

  21. Great post, you tried lots and lots of indies. I’m rather hesitant to buy from new-to-me indies directly, mostly because I don’t know if they will put the true value on the customs form. If they do I’m bound to get charged by our post for extra customs.
    Nonetheless, I took the plunge with Polish My Life not that long ago > absolutely amazing cremes and fast shipping (it got to me in NL in a week!), you should put that brand on your to try list as well.

  22. This is an awesome read! I am really bummed you had such a crappy experience with Love, Angeline but I really hope you give her another shot. My 4 fav indie brands are Love, Angeline…Bliss Polish…Delush Polish and Cupcake Polish (I didn’t see this on there…I don’t think hehe)

  23. Great job, Jessica!!! Some of your reviews I definitely agree with and others… well, not so much.. but I do HATE the drama that is in the nail community.. I just love buying ALL OF IT! 🙂 Ones you might try would be Literary Lacquers and Promise Polish… I’m a fan of both of those! 🙂

  24. I tried to comment before, but it’s telling me not to leave my blog link in comments… I don’t HAVE a blog, so not sure what that’s about… anyway… Great job, Jessica!!! Some of your reviews I definitely agree with and others… well, not so much.. but I do HATE the drama that is in the nail community.. I just love buying ALL OF IT! 🙂 Ones you might try would be Literary Lacquers and Promise Polish… I’m a fan of both of those! 🙂

  25. I love that you take the time to share your personal experiences – good or bad. Honesty is everything in this ever growing indie world. Thank you for putting this together!!

  26. This was so great!! I’ve bought from Femme Fatale and have heard of these other brands but have never actually bought anything, so I’ll refer back to this!

  27. This post is so great but also very, very dangerous! You are giving me too many ideas. The next new to me brand I’m going to purchase in a couple of weeks (with the rest of my Xmas money 😦 ) is Moo Moo Signatures. I’m excited to give them a try. Lastly, my jaw dropped when I saw 41 Pahlishes! Dang! So what is the total count from all the ones you tried?

  28. I had to come back to this a few times to finish, but really great information! I’ll be bookmarking this for future reference!!! And to add to your indie “to try” list… I’d suggest Rainbow Honey, their shimmers are ah-mazing and they do a monthly mystery bag! Thanks for all the information!

  29. This is such a fantastic post! It’s really nice to have your insights into so many indie brands, and the try list at the bottom has a couple names I’ve never seen before. I’m going to spend so much money this next year…

  30. Awesome list!! Will really help me decide where to order from in the future.

    I have a couple of recommendations, hope I’m not repeating: Nine zero and Tux polish

  31. Pingback: Alchemy Lacquers Europa swatch + review | Be Happy and Buy Polish

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