Orly ‘Desert Muse’ Fall 2020 collection

When I first saw the sneak peaks of the newest ‘Desert Muse’ Fall collection from Orly, I was slightly underwhelmed to be honest. By just looking at the bottle shots of 6 dusty, muted and neutral-leaning creams I thought that this will be an average and not that exciting release…. well, I was really wrong! 🙂

Yes, this release consists only of cream polishes but the undertones, formula and colour story created by the shade selection is really impeccable here. From what I see, it has already reached a status of ‘cult favourite’ in the nail polish community and let me show you why.

[AD] – polishes featured in this post were kindly sent to me by Lyko

Canyon Clay

orly desert muse; orly canyon clay
‘Canyon Clay’

First shade we are looking at here is ‘Canyon Clay’ which is a beautiful medium-warm brown polish that looks exactly like melted milk chocolate. Usually I am not the biggest fan of browns but I will make an exception for this nail polish perfection! It was extremely easy to apply: creamy and opaque formula gave me the complete mani in just 1 coat. Some shades in this collection look slightly different in the bottle and on the nails but this one is really true to its bottle colour.

Midnight Oasis

orly desert muse; orly midnight oasis
‘Midnight Oasis’

This is probably the most vibrant and impactful shade in the whole release – a very pigmented dusty peacock blue. What I especially love about this polish is that it doesn’t look black on the nails (which can sometimes be the case with very dark blue/plum/burgundy shades) but it always stays blue in all the lightings. Formula here was also a pleasure to work with, being glossy, smooth and opaque in the first coat.

Red Rock

orly red rock
‘Red Rock’

This collection wouldn’t feel so well-rounded and complete without a warm accent in the form of this dusty burgundy called ‘Red Rock’. I very much enjoy shades like this one: a muted, blackened red that really speaks to my fall-loving heart. My complaint here would be, however, the slightly less satisfactory formula as it was a little patchy and sheer on the first coat. I ended up applying 2 coats to build it up nicely and the result is really beautiful. Also, this is one of the shades I have mentioned before that look darker on the nails so be aware of that when shopping online 😉

Roam with Me

‘Roam with Me’

Next shade is a light and cool toned pinky-mauve that gives a more neutral touch to the collection. Once again, I believe that it adds some versatility to the release, but this colour is not my absolute favourite to be honest. I feel that it gives me ‘mannequin fingers’ as it is quite close to my skintone, but actually even worse because it is so cool-toned. Anyway, I have no complaints regarding the formula as it was quite thick and covered completely in 1 coat.



And now about this stunning shade! I am completely smitten by this super original and moody dusty greenish-grey. It is the first time that I come across such a mix (which sound maybe a little weird when I describe it, but looks absolutely gorgeous) that brings to mind the colour of the frozen moss. I would compare it formula-wise to ‘Red Rock’ as the first coat was quite thin and uneven but builded up beautifully in 2 coats.

Wild Abandon

‘Wild Abandon’

The last one is for you, all the purple lovers – ‘Wild Abandon’ – a plum with a touch of brown undertone just perfect for the fall weather. What is (in my opinion) special in this polish is the undertone, as it is a very interesting mix of a dusty plum and raisin, without really leaning red. I like this shade a lot, even though it surprisingly required 2 coats to build up despite being one of the darkest in the whole collection.

Final thoughts

When I look at all shades from Orly ‘Desert Muse’ collection gathered together I feel like it is a perfect selection of dusty polishes for fall season. I have enjoyed working with all the polishes and everytime I was getting a perfect finish in 1-2 coats. As I do not have that much experience with Orly products so far, I was super happy and thankful to be able to finally properly try the full collection and swatch their polishes. I would absolutely recommend this collection to everyone that in the autumn is longing for really moody, dusty, muted variants of every colour (like me). It is a surprisingly balanced and well-rounded collection with more brave options as well as neutrals plus a gem like a super original like ‘Sagebrush’.

Picking favourites is always hard for smaller releases like this, but I would probably go for ‘Sagebrush’ and ‘Midnight Oasis’ (‘Wild Abandon’ is also very pretty and probably my 3rd pick, but it has slightly worse formula).

orly desert muse

I was gifted the whole Orly ‘Desert Muse’ collection by Lyko and it is a place where you can also grab those polishes for yourself (I can fully recomment Lyko – it is my favourite place to purchase nail polish + very conveniently ships to many EU countries). They carry some of Orly new releases, so watch out as they can get sold quickly but the stock gets re-filled quite regularly 😉

Check out my other fall collections reviews from this year: OPI ‘Muse of Milan’ and Depend ‘Cosy Glam’.

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