Hiya friends! Lookit! The OPI Soft Shades 2016 Pastel Collection has landed on mah desk!
You know how most pastels in this shade range are stuffed with chalky white glooptastical stuff? These are not. Instead, they’re much thinner, smoother crème formulas that are somehow barely-there pastels without all that thick chalky stuff. Is that a good thing? Uh, sure?
opi soft shades 2016 swatches & review
OPI It’s in the Clouds – Soft Shades 2016 (above). This is three coats. The level is just okay, the off-white is lovely, and I think I should have done four coats to get to perfect, even coverage. Yes, I know it looks okay in the photo but there are slight streaks. Could I get away with wearing three coats? Yeah, if I weren’t obsessive-compulsive and anal retentive.
OPI Stop It I’m Blushing! – Soft Shades 2016 (above). My press sheet calls this shade Stop It I’m Blushing! but my sample bottle label says Stop I’m Blushing! – your name may vary. But what about the formula? Two coats. Mmm hmm – two. Keep your brush parallel to the nail, don’t fiddle with your coat once you lay it down, and try hard to float your coats. If you can manage that, it’s two coats to streak-free opacity.
OPI I Am What I Amethyst – Soft Shades 2016 (above). This shade wins all the things for me. Except formula things. Again, it took me three coats to get here and I’m not sure why. The formula doesn’t feel tricky when I’m on the first coat but that first coat is crazy patchy. The second coat covers a bit more, but is still patchy. The third coat is where it evens out and becomes 100% opaque. For 1/2 these shades it seems that three might be the magic number – at least for me.
OPI It’s A Boy! – Soft Shades 2016 (above). This Soft Shade is not to be confused with the previous OPI It’s a Boy – that was a limited edition release from I’m-not-sure-when. This one is pastel barely-there blue and so very pretty. In fact, all these shades are pretty. But how many coats? Two. How did I manage it in two? Gravity. I basically didn’t splay the brush at all but simply let gravity pull the polish from the brush and onto the nail. It’s a pretty easy technique and with most of these shades, it’s how I rolled.
OPI This Cost Me A Mint – Soft Shades 2016 (above). My notes for this say two coats. And for a shade like this, two is remarkable. I think the formula here was the best of the bunch. And this subtle shade of pale green? I love it.
OPI One Chic Chick – Soft Shades 2016 (above). Holy Toledo! What a perfect buttery pastel yellow! In three coats. But you know what? Three coats for a shade like this is normal. Can you do it in two? Yep, if you use blobtastic (but even) coats, you totally can.
My sample brush had a couple sticky-outie bits and that slowed me down a little. Hopefully the brushes that land on-shelf are all the superb brushes we’ve come to know and love from OPI. I mean if you’re spending $10 on a bottle of polish, you should expect a perfect brush, right?
So there you go, your swatches of the OPI Soft Shades 2016 Pastels. It’s a collection of 6 beautiful spring shades that as a whole, is beautiful to look at. Oooh! I should mention that you are not me. What I mean to say is that you don’t have to swatch these shades one after another and become annoyed that they all require different techniques to get them on evenly. If there’s a shade or two that you fall hard for, I think it’s worth it. I really do. As long as you know you’ll have to put a little effort into it, your results should be good.
Availability: OPI tells me release is officially slated for April but these shades are already online at Amazon.com and (my fave) sparklecanada.com. For best results, you should always buy your OPI from professional salons and places like ulta.com. In Canada, you can hit thebay.com.