Life’s A Beach: NCLA’s Spring ’13 Nail Lacquer Collection Review, Photos, Swatches

NCLA Life's a Beach Collection

NCLA has been on the block for a while, but is fast becoming a brand known for fun and flair– Cali style. Their slogan even encourages us to live vicariously in their world and “Enjoy a little California on your fingertips.”

Well, as I’m relocating to California in a few months, I figured an early start wouldn’t hurt. I did a nail haul over the black friday holiday and fell in love instantly! So, when their Spring collection was released I did not hesitate to let my mouse clicks do the talking. Thanks to a discount via Lucky breaks (Love ya too LuckyMag!), I’m able to present this collection of four lovely pastels that play upon the bright, fun, yet laid back personality of California.


My favorite color is green, so I was hyped to see that this color was included in the collection. It’s not just any ‘ole green through. This one is special. AM:Beauty Sleep PM: Shopping Spree is like a chameleon. In the bottle, it looks like your basic mint green, but on the nail it does a bait and switch! It’s actually a pale green with a tinge of yellow (and I mean a tinge).  This tinge (at times, and depending on the light) would make the polish appear almost neutral. It may sound a bit wild, but after wearing it for a few days, I totally got how the polish got it’s name. In the daylight (AM), it looks neutral (classic, clean and serene), but let the lights go down (PM)– you get the swash of color back and you’re ready to roll out on that spree!

Well, perhaps it’s my imagination, but you be the judge.












For me, yellow is a tough color to pull off because of my skin tone. It either looks like I have a banana plastered to my nails OR used school bus paint. Fortunately, Tennis Anyone was none of the above. It’s a whisper of yellow with maybe a green undertone because it looks like a pastel version of the Penn tennis ball. Despite my prior comments about yellow, I probably had the most fun putting this one on. :)

Slide2 YellowallnailsYellowallnailsclose












The next color commands you not to call it peachy, but I felt like Don’t Call Me Peachy was just that–peachy. It was a pretty color, but I’ve seen it before. If you’re a person that doesn’t want to commit fully to pink nor orange polish this season it will be a wonderful medium for you as it’s on the softer side. This color is also perfect for tan,olive, and medium to dark skin tones.











Last, but not least, As If  is certainly a color you’ve seen before, but you can’t do Spring without it. I would describe it as a pastel lilac and it did not disappoint. I received the most compliments wearing this gem. For purple lovers who’d like to lighten up a bit this season, this is the way to do it.

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Each polish had the same thin consistency typical of pastels. Application of the polish wasn’t difficult, but lengthy because of the streaky, uneven appearance I got with the first 2 coats. By the third coat my nail was fully opaque and by coat number four it appeared smooth.  All of these polishes have a creme finish with a natural shine. The pics here are without any top coat for your consideration. You could do with or without it depending on your preference. I’m a major chipper, so I applied NCLA’s gloss it over top. The polish wore well after a week with only minor edge wear. I reapply top coat every 2 days to prolong the life of my polish.


Final Impressions:

NCLA did a great job putting together a line with a even mix of unique and fresh combined with clean and classic colors for Spring. AM:Beauty Sleep PM: Shopping Spree was the standout for me and my favorite of the collection. Despite the application process, I felt the polishes delivered with good durability and a beautiful finish. I don’t mind applying 3-4 coats of polish, but for the average on-the-go woman going DIY, it may be a hardship. If you’re short on patience, simply take it to your friendly local nail salon, or have a mani party because really: you don’t want to miss a taste of life on the beach. It looks great.


Product Pigmentation Application Texture Durability     Final grade
8.5/10 8.5/10 8/10 8.5/10 10/10 B+


Price: $16

Size: 0.5 fl oz. (15ml)

Availability: NCLA

NCLA is 5-free, cruelty free, and American made.

Disclosures: These products were paid for with my own money. All of the views expressed here are my own.


Have you tried anything in this collection yet? Let us know what you think. Leave a comment below, or on the  Platinum PJ community forum.


Till the next,

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