August 8, 2012

Orly Electronica Back to School 2012 Collection Swatches and Review

I found the little display of the new fall Orly shades in Ulta hidden away on the last day of June, so I snapped them all up in excitement and have now finally written this wonderful post for you! The collection features four shades  - one creme, crelly, 'watercolor' duochrome, and a glassfleck. Each one is surprisingly unique to my stash (my hugeeee stash). After seeing the awesome swatches A Polish Addict does where she compares new collection polishes to others in her stash, I vowed to do that, too, if I was reviewing entire collections like this because I find it really helpful! This post is picture heavy and you can click through for details (it should pop up in a cool lightbox gallery viewer).

For all of these swatches I used 2 coats of the Orly polish over OPI Natural Nail base coat, and no top coat (I've been skipping it with new polishes to see what texture and dry time each polish has).

Orly Decoded is super easy and fun to work with! This is my favorite medium grey right now. Totally opaque in two coats, with blue undertones. Orly describes it as "the perfect industrial grey", and it is my  perfect grey! Might be fun to compare it to Zoya Kelly (which is more purple toned) but turns out I don't have it, even though I swore I did. 

with flash

I compared it to China Glaze Recycle and Cult Nails Blackout, which were all similar in the bottle (without flash irl). Recycle is darker and less blue, Blackout is much darker and has a somewhat gritty texture that requires at least one thin coat and a follow up coat (sometimes 3 because it can be patchy).

Orly Preamp is a pink glassfleck that is very unique because the glassfleck shimmer is duochromey from gold to orange to pink. I don't love pink, but this is really cool in person!! I used two coats and felt fine about any possible VNL; I suppose if you did thin coats you would require 3. 

with flash

Zoya Tobey, Orly Preamp, Zoya Rory
I compared Orly Preamp to Zoya Rory and Tobey because they looked to be the same color pink in the bottle (as seen in the list bottle shot). The two Zoyas also have unique finishes which is what sets all of these pink polishes apart. Zoya Rory is foiling, so it has a lot of silver shimmer that makes it a lighter pink color on the nail. Zoya Tobey has blue shimmer which makes it look more blue-toned on the nail.

Orly Shockwave is the crelly of the collection. I hoard blues and was surprised to find no exact dupes in my collection. I had a little trouble with this one, mostly because I was being a little impatient. Because it is a crelly (squishy creme), there were thin patches near my cuticles and a little streakiness. I should have probably done 3 coats for this one, but that makes me sad. Some people love crellies but I feel like I'm just too impatient for more squishy finishes!

Pure Ice French Kiss, Orly Shockwave, Sally Hansen Thinking of Blue, Orly Royal Navy

I grabbed some similar polishes from my stash, as well as a really popular Orly color to compare with Shockwave. Pure Ice French Kiss is my favorite blue creme; it's brighter and easier to apply than Shockwave, but has less depth. Thinking of Blue is much darker, but you can tell on the edge of my middle nail that Shockwave has a lot of depth and is sort of a chameleon so it can be fairly dark looking at times. Finally, everyone loves Orly Royal Navy so I thought I'd show you how close it was even though the finishes of Royal Navy and Shockwave are different.

Poor Orly Synchro is the polish that everyone wanted to like from this collection that no one does :(
I am really sad about how my photos of this one turned out; it's a really special polish that changes a lot in the light. Layered over black it looks really cool because it maintains this blue-silver shimmer while changing colors. I don't really care for the color out of the bottle, but I think this would be fun to layer over differently toned vampy colors (much like with any duochrome). I will be re-swatching this soon so I can show it off better!

Overall, this is a bizarre collection of colors because they don't seem to match in terms of color story or finish, but there are some fun colors here! I highly recommend Decoded if you're looking for a great medium grey creme; I love it and keep using it for nail art. Preamp is a must have if you like pink or simply weird colors. If you're into duochromes, I think you should give Synchro a chance, too. It looks awesome over black and I think the shimmer in it is really cool.

How do you feel about this collection? Have you gotten any of these yet? Let me know!


  1. i love that you found the time to do comparisons too - i know this must have taken you ages !! xx

  2. Hey! I nominated you for the versatile blogger award, check out my post on it here:

  3. I have this collection and just haven't gotten around to swatching yet. Orly is one of my favorite brands. Great comparisons.

  4. Nice post! I've been curious about these. The only one I'd read a review on prior was Synchro, and the color was likened to raw meat tendons. :p It is an interesting mishmash of colors. I like the medium grey creme the best. I agree with you on the crelly; be one or the other already!! Lol.

  5. oh so nice post .. i was looking for the swatches .. thnx :)

  6. I have three of the polishes in this collection and I am currently running the swatches and reviews. I couldn't find Preamp at my local Sally's, but I intend to pick it up. Decoded is lovely and so is Shockwave. Poor old Synchro... It should have been the standout of the collection and it just died on impact, didn't it?

    Your swatches are great and I really enjoyed seeing your comparisons, too. I am now a new follower. :D


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