Travelogue: Milano 2014

Hi Lovelies,

My office shipped me out to Milano for two days to visit a convention, gotta love a job that sends you on adventures! I was accompanied by (or rather I accompanied) my colleague who originally introduced me to the magic that is Kiko! So there's a mandatory Kiko Milano visit everytime we are there, sometimes even two or three...
After my London Travelogue, I thought I could blog about my adventures and treasure findings in Milano too. Not really in-depth, I was there mainly for work, but I could sneak in a bit of polish shopping while store-checking. So here's an itty bitty shopping guide if you're ever in Milano, even just for the day or a long-ish stopover.

Let's start with Kiko. Ah, Kiko. Kiko everywhere! If you're familiar with this brand, Milano is where they call their home (Kiko Milano, amirite?) I went to 4 different Kiko shops while I was in Milano wtf... And yes, I purchased something in each of them (ok, 3 of 4), although they all stock more or less the same stuff. Besides nail polish, which is very affordable and simply awesome, they also sell nail care tools and stuff. Of course I grabbed a bunch of polishes, but also some things to pamper my hands and nails.

  • Kiko Quick Dry - 848 Pearly Lilac
  • Kiko Quick Dry - 856 Pearly Jeans
  • Kiko Quick Dry - 853 Pearly Light Yellow
  • Kiko Poker Lacquer - 01 Prestigious Taupe
  • 255 - Violet Microglitter
  • 298 - Turquoise Microglitter
  • 479 - Pearly Golden Sesame
  • 508 - Creamy Lipstick
  • 482 - Tangerine

First stop was Kiko at the main shopping street besides the one around the Duomo, so you can't miss it! I didn't buy much, because... I really hate it when sales clerks are all up your ass about selling a product. No offense, I appreciate some customer service, but in this particular Kiko they were so dedicated to give you reasons to buy stuff. I was too polite to tell her to STFU and take my money already, so I just let her brabble and sample polish on a tape stuck to my hand.

Next, I went to the Kiko in Porta di Venezia (Corso Buenos Aires? I'm not sure what this street is actually called...). This is another shopping street, you'll get to it if you take the metro to Porta di Venezia and just step out of the station. There's also a bunch of hotels there. Again, you can't miss the Kiko if you just wander up and down the street. This time I actually wished the sales clerks were a wee bit up my ass, because at one point I was holding so many polishes and wishing someone would hand me a basket... Eventually I got one myself.

The Kiko I skipped was the one around the Duomo area, it was pretty crowded that day.

Finally, before heading home, I dropped by the Kiko at the train station Milano Centrale. When you enter from the taxi stand side, it's on your right hand side. I didn't buy anymore polishes, but I got these hand and feet masks, also a new nail 'buffer'. This file comes in 6 different grids that are like the 6 sides of a nail buffer. I only got step 4, since I never actually buff my nails and just use this grid for the fine trimming after I file them into shape.

Second Italian brand you might want to check out is Flormar. They're a little pricier than Kiko, but they have really nice colours available. My favourites are their Jelly polishes and Matte colours. Don't get them wrong, their 'jelly' line is actually not jelly polishes, but Gel-look polishes. I guess they were going for Gelly and just thought Jelly was more English...?

  • Flormar Matte - m01
  • Flormar Matte - m19 
  • 394 
  • Flormar Glitter - GL05
  • Jelly Look - JL11 Palm Coast Teal
  • Jelly Look - JL09 Sky Blue

Anyway, this store is also on the main shopping street, just continue walking down away from the Duomo after Kiko and you'll get there.

After Flormar, keep walking and you'll end up at a Drugstore (where they yell at you when you enter towards closing time lol). This place is great! I forgot the name, but it's the only drugstore along that road. They have all sorts of drugstore brands, including the Italian brand Pupa that has such a huge variety of polishes! Also, they have all these L'Oreal polishes I had never seen before, more Confetti Toppers mostly and also Smokey Top Coat, say whaat?

  • L'Oreal - 926 Independence Day
  • L'Oreal - 925 Mini Camouflage
  • L'Oreal - 913 Smoky
  • Pupa Underwater - 001
  • Pupa Holographic - 036

If you're still in this area, make sure you go to OVS. While it is mostly a clothes shop, this OVS has a cosmetic section! Again, you will find some Italian brands like Pupa and Shaka Shaka (at least I think this is an Italian brand?) They also sell Essence (including some really old polishes, even from before they switched to the new bottle style!), Rimmel London, Mavala and others.

  • Essence - 81 No Doubt
  • Pupa Color Gel - 078
  • Shaka Shaka - J23 Violet Stone
  • Shaka Shaka - 680 Neptune
  • Shaka Shaka - 425 Glimmer Orange
  • Shaka Shaka - 740 Dark Acquamarine

Lastly, my personal favourite: Upim! You will find this one along Porta di Venezia aswell. If I have any Italian readers at all, please explain to me what extactly Upim is... Aside from polish heaven. They mostly sell clothes and shoes, but they have a cosmetic section and damn did they have a lot of old Essence polishes, even trend editions! Of course, again you will meet Pupa and Shaka Shaka polishes, but also Essence, Rimmel London, Revlon, Sinful Colors, Maybelline and many more... I was especially excited about Sinful Colors, I've never seen these anywhere in Europe before!
They also had a lot of "special prices" and a lot of bins with random polish. The displays are all kinda messy and unsorted, so you'll have to spend some time looking around but it's worth it, trust me.

  • Sinful Colors - Winterberry
  • Sinful Colors - Embers Only
  • Sinful Colors - Silver Belle
  • Sinful Colors - Call You Later
  • Sinful Colors - I Miss You
  • Essence - 86 A Lovely Secret
  • Essence - 42 Dress For a Moment
  • Essence - 58 Frozen Queen
  • Essence Nude Glam - 02 Iced Strawberry Queen
  • Essence Nude Glam - 04 Iced Latte (Got this one as a back-up :)
  • Essence - 50 Irreplaceable 

Aaand finally I quickly stopped into American Apparel to get some of their cute toppers for Topper Time. You will find it in the Strada di Ticinese.

  • Andromeda
  • I Heart LA
  • Daisy Field

All in all, Milano is great for polish shopping and I came home with a bottle count of 40. As an Essence fangirl I can also tell you, in Milano they are a wee bit behind on their trend editions (say 1-2 collections behind), but they make up for it with all their awesome home brands! Italy has some great brands and I really regret not getting more of the Pupa polishes... Oh well, there's always a next time.

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