Friday, June 12, 2015

Do They Marble Like a Dream?

It's summer, so in the nail world that means it's time for neons.  I get so excited every time I see a new collection come out, but there's a new standard when it comes to neons, "Does it marble like a dream."  I know when I'm scrolling through my Instagram feed, and run across a new swatch of a neon collection, that the caption will read "And this collection marbles like a dream!"  But, what does that really mean?  What's the definition of "dream?"  So, here is my quest to figure it out.  I got my hands on some of the collections that are big at marbling right now and attempted to put them through a test.

I'll preface this by saying, I do know how to water marble.  Am I proficient?  I'm not sure.  I just know I can do it but I do not have a Ph.D. in it. 

Tools/Technique: the cup I use is 2.5 inches in diameter.  This is the same size of a child's Yoplait yogurt cup.  The water I use is a one gallon size, Kroger brand filtered water, at room temperature.  I only used this water and switched out water between marbles.  My design tool is a needle shoved into a crayon.  Yes, it's a classy tool, I know.  I used the same design across all marbles. 

Collections: Fair Maiden, The Rainbow Brights Collection; Pipe Dream Polish, A Night in Vegas Collection; China Glaze, Electric Nights; In the Name of Polish, Hard Knock Life Collection; Glam Glaze, The Graffiti Collection.  Indigo Bananas, Neon the 10th Element Collection.

Fair Maiden (FM):
This collection consists of eight creams. This collection wasn't easy to marble.  The polish is thick, which means it's slower to drop from the brush to the water surface.  I usually touch my brush to the surface but it still was slow to get in the water.  The spread was also slow.  This means it dried too much to really get a lot of passes into the bullseye.  I ended up giving my glass a hard jiggle to get it to spread.  I don't mind jiggling the glass.  But, I really had to work to spread it.  I ended up with six rings. 

Pipe Dream Polish (PDP):
This collection consists of seven creams.  This collection is easy to work with.  It was easy to get off the brush into the water.  The spread was not real fast, but not slow.  I'd categorize it as a medium spread.  This gave me eight rings.  Actually, I could've added one more drop of polish in the center, but was happy with the eight.  I did not have to work to get these to spread. 

China Glaze (ChG):
This collection consists of nine creams.  As you can tell, this was not easy to work with.  I ended up with five rings.  And, it was not easy getting these rings.  Take a close look at the design, see those empty spaces?  I don't like those.  This is the only collection that had this happen.  No bueno.

In the Name of Polish (ItNoP):
This collection consists of six jellies.  Look at that spread.  Lovely.  So satisfying.  It's so concentric.  I ended up with eight perfect rings.  It was really easy to design because it spreads so evenly.  The polish spreads fast, it's like it swan dives into the water. 

Glam Glaze (GG):
This collection consists of six creams.  This is another one of those collections that needs a glass jiggle.  However, I didn't have to do a lot, just a nudge at the beginning to get it started.  I ended up with nine rings. 

Indigo Bananas (IB):
This collection consists of nine creams.  This collection spread beautifully 100% without assistance.  I didn't have to jiggle or nudge the glass.  The formula had great consistency and rolled off the brush at a medium rate.  This let the polish get to the water and spread quick.  I ended up with nine concentric circles.  Also, take note, that the polish almost spread to the edge of the glass.  This gives room for the polish to spread evenly and you're able to create a great design.

Which marbles like a dream?  Hands down, In the Name of Polish.  It spreads fast and evenly.  That's how I like my marbles to spread.  But, they're jellies not creams.  This doesn't bother me since I use a white base with my marbles. 

Pipe Dream Polish comes in second and the best of the creams.  I did not have to jiggle my glass at all and it spread well. 

Glam Glaze marbles well, but I had to give it a jiggle.  Well, not really a jiggle as more of a slight nudge.  If it hadn't been for that, it would be neck and neck with PDP.  Once the rings are helped to start spreading, you can get a great marble.  

China Glaze and Fair Maiden are last.  I mean, if you really want them to work and you put a lot of effort into it, you can probably get them to give you an okay marble.  I'm lazy.  I don't want to put in a lot of effort.

I have added Indigo Bananas, Neon the 10th Element to my comparison and the results are as follows:
In the Name of Polish is still the front runner due to the fast and even spread.  Again, these are jellies not creams.  I'm putting the marble over a white base so I'm not bothered by that.
The front runner of the creams is Indigo Bananas.  This neon cream collection has a stellar formula for water marbling.  It takes no effort to get each polish to spread concentrically.  Because the polish spreads so well and evenly, you have a greater chance of making intricate designs with little user error. 
Next in line is Pipe Dream Polish and Glam Glaze with my reasons stated above.
China Glaze and Fair Maiden are still last with my reasoning outlined above.

In the Name of Polish is awesome, put them over a white base and have fun marbling.  You go Indigo Bananas!!!  In case you couldn't tell, Indigo Bananas is my favorite of the creams.  Pipe Dream Polish and Glam Glaze are good too.  China Glaze and Fair Maiden are no bueno.

*The only collection that I reviewed in this post that was purchased by me was the China Glaze.  I was provided In the Name of Polish, Indigo Bananas and Glam Glaze to swatch/review the collections.  I have an awesome friend that let me borrow Pipe Dream Polish and Fair Maiden(she's the cooooolest!).


  1. Haha, awesome post!! Fantastic comparison between some very hot collections!

  2. Love this! I dream of the day I can get pipe dream polish

  3. Love this so much! Did you use the Shimmer or No Shimmer for the Hard Knock Life collection, as I see she offers both?

  4. Great post! Great comparison.

  5. Best post ever! So I shouldn't auction off my ANIV collection for a ridiculous amount of money then ;-)

  6. Wonderfully informative post. Thanks for sharing it with us!

  7. Great review! It is nice to see they are options for those of use who love neons!

  8. Thank you so much for doing this post. Ever since Pipedream announced that they will no longer be selling ANIV I was browsing Google for something similar and I came across your post. I love how thorough you were in your tests, wonderful job!

  9. Thanks for taking the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love learning more on this topic. If possible, as you gain expertise, would you mind updating your blog with extra information? It is extremely helpful for me. marble fountains


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