Mani Monday: Essie Shearling Darling Winter 2013 Swatches

by Karen Falcon on 1 September 2013 · 30 comments

Essie Shearling Darling_Essie Winter 2013_Sable Collar_Shearling Darling_Mind Your Mittens_Warm & Toasty Turtleneck_Parka Perfect_Toggle to the TopThis early edition of Mani Monday brings you the Essie Shearling Darling Winter 2013 collection (which we showed you as a sneak peek here). And it has a couple of surprises. Is that a cool blue-y polish? A pale lilac? What??

Essie Shearling Darling_Essie Winter 2013_Sable Collar_Shearling Darling_Mind Your Mittens_Warm & Toasty TurtleneckStill, the Essie Shearling Darling Winter 2013 collection does serve up those expected warm, dark wintery hues, starting with Sable Collar and Shearling Darling.

Essie Sable Collar_Shearling Darling collection swatches_Winter 2013Essie Sable Collar, a rich cocoa plum with a coppery pearlescence.

Essie Shearling Darling_Shearling Darling collection swatches_Winter 2013Essie Shearling Darling, a seductive mahogany red.

Essie Shearling Darling_Essie Winter 2013_Shearling Darling_Mind Your Mittens_Warm & Toasty Turtleneck_Parka Perfect_Toggle to the Top.jpgThe Essie Shearling Darling Winter 2013 collection polish itself is once again a step up (as it was in the For the Twill of It collection — see shades here) from the Essie formulas of years past. It self-levels fairly well and has good coverage in two even coats.

ESSIE MIND YOUR MITTENS swatches_Essie Shearling Darling collection_Winter 2013Essie Mind Your Mittens, a frosty blue-grey — definitely a mitten shade, right? (There are questions regarding whether this is actually Parka Perfect, but it’s not — we confirmed with Essie PR that shade is indeed Essie Mind Your Mittens.)

Essie Shearling Darling_Essie Winter 2013_Warm & Toasty Turtleneck_Parka Perfect_Toggle to the TopDon’t forget your favourite top coat — you need it to bring out all the depth of colour in this collection.

Essie Warm & Toasty Turtleneck swatches_Shearling Darling collection_Winter 2013Essie Warm & Toasty Turtleneck, a complexion-flattering lilac (“wisteria pink” according to Essie). Is this a cashmere turtleneck? Cableknit? Can you see it?

Essie Shearling Darling_Fall 2013_Parka Perfect_Toggle to the TopThese two shades in the Essie Shearling Darling Winter 2013 collection take us back to the expected, but not in a boring way.

Essie Parka Perfect swatches_Shearling Darling collection_Winter 2013Essie Parka Perfect, an inky blackened khaki teal. (Again, we’ve confirmed with Essie PR that this shade really is Essie Parka Perfect.)

Essie Toggle to the Top swatches_Shearling Darling collection_Winter 2013Essie Toggle to the Top, a pre-holiday deep claret with cranberry glitter.

Hard pressed to pick just one favourite? We won’t judge if you pick two or four or all six.

The Essie Shearling Darling Winter 2013 collection ($9.99 each polish) arrives at salons and select drugstores in October; visit for retailers.

Coming soon: Essie Holiday 2013 Encrusted Treasures.

Manicure photos ’n manicures © 2013 Karen Falcon (sometimes she wears Crocs, but only inside). Nail polish photos © 2013 Janine Falcon/BEAUTYGEEKS.

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{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

Zorbs 1 September 2013 at 4:58 am

Toggle To The Top looks pretty dupe-y to Leading Lady.


Marilyn 1 September 2013 at 7:10 am

What super colours! Today I think claret is going to be my favourite. Think I need to try all.


Janine 1 September 2013 at 9:38 am

Do it, Marilyn! *grin*


YouLookHotToday 1 September 2013 at 9:19 am

I’m not so sure I can really get behind this Essie Shearling Darling winter collection. Parka Perfect is perhaps the only shade that screams “winter” at me. I think I’ll more than likely get that one. I’m not particularly drawn to browns (that goes way back to my high school days) so those two are definitely not on my want list. Toggle To The Top reminds me of Ruby Slippers from many Essie moons ago (and yes, Leading Lady) so that’s a pass. Warm & Toasty Turtleneck I might wear – it’s pretty and soft and does indeed make me think of a cashmere sweater – it’s a very Essie colour.


Janine 1 September 2013 at 9:33 am

I love the Shearling Darling shade although I’m sure I’ve seen a similar shade many times before (Essie Wicked is one of my all-time faves). But same as you, You, I think the best in this collection is Warm & Toasty Turleneck – it IS such an Essie colour.


Lindsay 2 September 2013 at 8:47 am

Love that parka one. I’m a sucker for that dark teal colour. I have two polishes that colour from two other brands and they just don’t go on well.


Brielle 3 September 2013 at 1:04 am

Love the Essie mind your mittens color. So light and can be neutral too! :)


Angela 6 September 2013 at 2:06 pm


Would you say that Toggle to the Top is a textured polish?


K Falcon 7 September 2013 at 10:39 am

Hallo, Angela!

I should probably answer that seeing as I’ve just revisited the polish and have it on my little finger right now…

I would say Toggle to the Top is a glitter polish. Glitter polish (to me) implies visible glitter bits that when applied, do not go on to create an evenly textured finish. Because glitter polish remains bumpy after application, it can be called textured, yes.

BUT, when I use the term “textured polish”, I refer mostly to polishes with finishes similar to OPI’s Liquid Sand (I use this example because it’s probably the most familiar). When you run your finger over the whole nail that’s been polished with what I call a textured polish, the micro bits are evenly distributed and the result is a consistent texture throughout.

Glitter generally doesn’t give you an even distribution but it does give a rough sort of texture so, in effect, it’s a textured polish – but not an evenly textured polish, so I call it glitter instead of textured.

Hope that helps!



Melody 7 September 2013 at 2:36 pm

Love the Shearling Darling.


Elena 10 September 2013 at 11:07 am

Beautiful!! Is Toggle to the Top similar to China Glaze Ruby Pumps?


Nailz Craze 12 September 2013 at 2:52 pm

These all look very nice, I loved your swatches too.
Toggle to the Top looks a lot like Leading Lady tho…


K Falcon 12 September 2013 at 4:41 pm

Thanks, NC!

Toggle to the Top is absolutely a dupe. If you have Leading Lady, you can probably pass on this one (unless you’re a collector).


Crystal 4 October 2013 at 4:33 am

gorgeous swatches, do you think shearling darling and opi’s vision of love are similar? Perhaps i don’t need both…


K Falcon 4 October 2013 at 7:35 am

Hallo, Crystal!

Those two shades are indeed similar – OPI Visions of Love is a bit more red than Essie Shearling Darling and Essie Shearling Darling is a little bit more chocolate. If you’re an Essie fan, you might already have a bottle of Wicked. If you’ve got Wicked, you don’t need OPI Visions of Love.

If it’s a choice for ME between Shearling Darling and Visions of Love, I choose both. That could just be me, though – I *might* have a nail-polish hoarding disorder. ;)

Cheers & thanks for the comment!


Tanyatopia 8 October 2013 at 4:04 pm

Can you confirm the names of Mind Your Mittens and Parka Perfect, I have seen the names swapped on other blogs and I’m not sure which is actually which!?


K Falcon 8 October 2013 at 4:22 pm

You bet I can! We know there’s been some confusion with mislabeled bottles so we’ve asked Essie which is which. They tell us that (as you’d expect), Parka Perfect is the dark navy parka colour and Mind Your Mittens is the pale blue. Hope that clears it up!
Cheers ‘n happy painting,


Rene 10 October 2013 at 10:04 am

How close together are Shearling Darling and Wicked? I seem to love all of the six shades, but as I already have Wicked, do I really need Shearling Darling?


K Falcon 10 October 2013 at 10:23 am

Those two shades are pretty similar – Wicked has a little more deep-dark red in it (I want to say it’s more blood-like but that just sounds gross) than Shearling Darling.

Do you need both? Nope. BUT, there is a vast difference in the formulas. In my estimation, Shearling Darling is a much better polish – it’s a little thicker than Wicked, self-levels better than Wicked, and is more glossy than Wicked. Now do you need both? :)


hanne 19 October 2013 at 8:15 pm

FYI, Mind Your Mittens is actually the dark teal color, whereas Parka Perfect is the frosty blue grey. I heard the colors where mislabeled in press samples, but in stores the labels don’t match the colors in these swatches, they are switched.


K Falcon 19 October 2013 at 10:03 pm


Tanyatopia asked us to confirm the shade names up there on October 8th so we checked with Essie. Essie tells us our post and shade names are correct. We’ll keep you posted on that if they backtrack but for now, as far as we know from going directly to Essie, Parka Perfect is the colour of a blue parka and Mind Your Mittens is the pale blue-grey.


Janine 19 October 2013 at 10:05 pm

Actually, Hanne, it’s the other way around: Mind Your Mittens is indeed the pale blue-grey; Perfect Parka is the khaki teal (a parka shade). We checked with Essie when we heard about the mix-up :-)


melissa 29 October 2013 at 9:43 pm

they’ve added the collection to their site now and the dark teal is mind your mittens, the mistake was probably massive enough that they just decided to change the name lol. all the ones i’ve seen in store are labeled this way and the ones coming from beauty supplies it seems..

bummed bc i ordered mind your mittens and wasn’t expecting the teal!


K Falcon 31 October 2013 at 10:43 am


We’re hearing one thing and yet seeing another – we have more emails and questions out there and are awaiting even more official response.

Will keep all ya’ll posted and as soon as we hear, you’ll hear – what a fun mess, right?

Melissa, I think you’re right and they’ll probably have to just continue along with the error – it’s a massive thing to recall at this stage. The good news is that the dark teal is a beautiful shade for winter – I bet it would look super-stunning with a matte top coat on it!

We’ll be in touch everyone!
K & J.


Mishi 9 March 2014 at 10:18 pm

The first time I saw your swatches, I ran to get the warm and toasty turtleneck :)) it’s so pretty !


Karen Mani-Geek 9 March 2014 at 10:51 pm

Mishi! That was an excellent choice – I think it’ll work right now for spring, too!


Mishi 9 March 2014 at 11:08 pm

Thanks !! You are promoting my addiction to nail paints .. He he


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