Sally Hansen HD: Spectrum

I was certain I needed to take a buying break after I splurged on the whole Essie Metallics collection.  But then Jamie Sanford sent me a heads up that CVS is doing a big clearance sale, including 75% off of Sally Hansen’s HD Hi-Definition Nail Color polishes.  That’s a damn good deal.  It makes each one something like $1.60 each.

I hit the first CVS right away.  No dice, they didn’t even have a display rack.  Last night I hit another and they had just three left, two bottles of Spectrum and one bottle of Resolution.  I grabbed one of each color and had to try Spectrum right away.

Spectrum is an amazing translucent blue that’s pretty much just a delivery medium for a bajillion glass flecks.  It’s crazy-packed with glass flecks.  And I’m absolutely in love with a good glass fleck formula.  I chose to layer it over one coat of China Glaze’s Liquid Leather, my go-to black creme.  The result is absolutely magical.

I decided to hold my Back to the Future DeLorean Hot Wheels car.  It’s DeLorean-worthy.

Spectrum Lamp Light

One coat of China Glaze’s Liquid Leather, one coat of Sally Hansen HD’s Spectrum and topped generously with Seche Vite. Shown with my beloved Hot Wheels’ Back to the Future DeLorean.

Like most glittery finishes, this polish has the potential to be a top coat-eater.  I went a bit heavy handed with Seche Vite, but if you prefer thin coats of quick dry top coat I’d probably recommend a layer of Gelous in between.

It was a bit of a mess to apply, the thin formula tended to want to go everywhere.  Couple that with being a naturally messy (let’s say “free-spirited”) nail polish applier, and I ended up with quite a clean up job to tackle at the end.  It wasn’t terribly hard to clean up, but the flooded cuticles are especially apparent.

Spectrum LED Light

Here’s a look at it in bright LED light. This lamp skews the color a bit yellow but the very focused light source makes the sparkles go crazy.

Spectrum Soft Sunlight

Even totally gray overcast soft sunlight can’t rob it of its sparkle.

There’s also a very slight duo- or multichrome effect that’s nearly impossible to capture on camera.  At very acute angles a deep violet tone emerges, and at opposite angles you might see just a hint of aqua.

Spectrum Angle

Sally Hansen HD’s Spectrum in indirect soft sunlight.  To the human eye a soft hint of deep violet emerges from the darkest areas.  To the camera?  Not so much.

If you think it looks a bit like a foil, maybe a bit like Orly’s Sweet Peacock, you’re not alone.  I knew it seemed sparklier than Sweet Peacock, but my memory was telling me that Sweet Peacock was a very similar blue and similarly textured.  So I found my swatch and did a quick comparison.  Not even close.  Of course, I should note that Sweet Peacock is opaque and shines without a black base coat.  It’s a true foil, and the best blue foil I own.

Blue Comparison

Sally Hansen HD’s Spectrum next to Orly’s Sweet Peacock.

So there you have it.  GET THEE TO A CVS before they’re all gone.  I might go out and hit a third store tonight to see if I can find any more.


About Smapte

I crochet. I crochet a lot. My speciality is amigurumi dolls based on pop culture entertainment, such as LOST, Star Trek, Mad Men and Firefly. I also crochet beanie hats with food items on them such as pancakes, sushi, burgers, spaghetti, or whatever sounds hat-worthy. Visit me at or

Posted on July 12, 2012, in Misc and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

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