A few years ago I moved from Europe to Canada, and had very limited suitcase space for everything I owned. For that reason I brought only one nail polish in my favorite color with me, and gave away the rest. Somehow I still didn’t build up a nice collection, so I when I saw X in the city nail polish set by Formula X at Sephora, I decided it will be a birthday gift for me. That was months ago, as I wanted to test how do these nail polish minis stand up to the quality we can all expect from Formula X, as I’ve seen reviews of some other sets (other brands) that were not great.

First of all, the packing is beautiful. Mini polishes come in 4 mini “city towers”, all housed in a plastic case with snowflakes simulating snow fall in the city. Stunning. However, I really struggled to open the outer packaging, so I decided not to reuse it, because it would be too hard. It went straight to my recycling bin.

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Formula X decided to give us six best selling cremes+4 new limited edition shimmers in this set. As I mentioned, they are divided into 4 little packages, with 2 or 3 minis each, that would be perfect as stocking stuffers. There is space in the back where you can personalize them.

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Within each tower, minis are housed in plastic casing that keeps them in place.

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These are standard Formula X minis – 0.33 oz/ 4ml. Limited edition colors included are:

  • Electri-City (coppery shimmer)
  • Epiphany (antique gold shimmer)
  • Wanderlust (lavender platinum shimmer)
  • X Appeal (pink shimmer)

Plus, you get six creme colors:

  • Majestic (navy blue)
  • Obsessed (dark merlot)
  • Fahrenheit (cool red)
  • Gray Matter (charcoal gray)
  • Perfection (smoky violet)
  • Intensity (powder pink)

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The little minis are very cute, and the brush is decent (I don’t like their full size brush, either, so can’t be excited). The only thing I really hated is that there is no little metal ball for mixing in the minis, so if they separate, you really have to shake well, hoping the color  would mix evenly.

After testing all of the colors properly, I can say that they lasted 4-7 days without chipping, and only wore out on tips, with housework (I used a base and top coat). This is in line with regular, full-size Formula X polishes for me (my hands are in water a lot). Shimmers wore on tips a bit faster than creme ones.

Now, onto the colors!

I would describe Electri-city as very dark brown with bronze shimmer. It is a warm color, but looks very dark on my nails, and the shimmer is not very noticeable.

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As usual, Sephora photos are not true to color, so this particular color looks a bit orange on their picture, while in reality it is more brown. For this color you can use one thick or two thinner coats (I used two thin ones).

Epiphany is unlike any other gold nail polish I’ve ever owned. It is warm yellow gold, but with pink shimmer. I wouldn’t call it “antique”, because it is not muted at all, it is very shimmery, and bright. Pink shimmer is not very noticeable, but made it work with my skin better.

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Again, this color looks almost orange on Sephora’s photo, while it’s not orange at all. The nail polish is quite sheer, so two coats are a must. I even tried it as a topper over red polish, and it looked great, just a bit harder to apply evenly as just one sheer coat.

Wanderlust is gray/silver shimmer with lavender tones. Lavender is not noticeable, until you compare your nails to true gray color. I really like this twist on gray/silver nail polish.

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Two coats are necessary with this color also, as it’s quite sheer. It dries extra fast, but wore off a bit faster than other colors.

X appeal is baby pink with white/silver shimmer. It is the least favorite for me out of the new shimmers, but I can see myself wearing it as a winter color. It could also be a perfect bridal color. Although it’s described as pink shimmer, it is less pink on nails than it shows in the bottle. It is pearly white, and pink is more toned down. This color is the most shimmery out of them all, and reminds me of glittery snowflakes.

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Two coats are a must to get it even, maybe even three. I used two coats, and it was a little bit sheer – tips of my nails are shoving through a little bit.

Majestic is dark ink blue. It is very pigmented, so be careful around cuticles, it’s harder to remove. It is one of my favorites in this set, and it was a perfect color for fall.

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One thick coat was enough with this color. It is very smooth and self leveling, and had a gel-like finish. This color also lasted the longest for me, a full week, with just a slight wear on tips.

Obsessed is a perfect dark burgundy. I was hoping this one would be wine color, more toward purple, since it’s described as merlot, but it’s shoving as true burgundy. Nonetheless, it is my favorite color in the set!

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As with the blue one, one thick was coat enough for even coverage. It is very smooth, and self-leveling, and left a gel-like finish. I recommend two thin coat though, to avoid pooling around cuticles. It wore a full week, with normal wear on tips.

Fahrenheit is a beautiful cool-toned red. If it was any brighter, it wouldn’t work for me. It matches my red winter outfits beautifully, but I think it will be perfect for just about any season (maybe not in fall, when I tend to wear darker colors on my nails).

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It required two thin, or one thick coat – I used two coats. It applies evenly and lasts very long, up to a week on my nails. It chips faster if I keep my hands in water for too long.

Gray matter is the only color from this set that I already had. It is a true gray, and I took these photos against a gray background to show you just how it matches. I believe this color is a perfect match for light to medium skin tones.

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I do only one thicker coat with this color, and it always works for me. It still dries quickly, and it lasts about 6 days for me.

Perfection is a gray nail polish with violet undertones. It is hard to notice violet at first, but compared to true gray it is definitely visible. I took photos against gray background, so you can see the difference better. You can compare it with photos of Gray matter (above), which is a true gray.  I didn’t think I’d like it as much as I do! It’s my second favorite in this set (after Obsessed).

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It is a bit on the liquid side, so it comes on uneven, and you have to apply two coats. Once on, it lasts for so long. I wore it for a full week, and even then it could still pass as wearable.

Intensity is a powder pink, very light, almost like those ballet slippers. It is the least favorite in the set for me. I didn’t care for the color, and couldn’t wait to get it off.

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I had the hardest time applying this one. It is extremely thin, and it pooled all around my cuticles. I don’t think I even need to say that at least two coats are necessary with this color. However, it lasted full seven days, with almost no wear.

Formula X – X in the city is available at Sephora. The price is $44, which may seems pricey, but if you never finish a full sized nail polish , or want to build up you collection, it is a good way to try a variety of different finishes and colors. And, it’s just made to be divided into 4 cute little stocking stuffers.

Did you ever try any Formula X nail polishes. How do you like them, compared to other brands? Do you have any favorite colors?

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