Oh C.O. Bigelow: A few swatches and thoughts from the drool worthy apothecary

One evening as I waited for friends at a place near West 4th street, I decided to pop in the C.O. Bigelow chemists to occupy my time.  I forgot how lovely this place is. C.O. is the oldest apothecary-pharmacy in the U.S. Founded in 1838, and still has a lot of that old time charm. You can actually get prescriptions filled here, but more interesting is the selection of imported and/or hard to find skin/body care and beauty items that they stock. Everything from exotic perfumes, throat lozenges, and NARS cosmetics. There’s so much to look and drool at. Even their own C.O. Bigelow brand you may have seen in Bath and Body Works. The store’s “vintage” interior is the perfect backdrop for perusing their inventory. Sort of making you feel like you’ve somehow discovered each these brands yourself.

Photo by Kate Attardo

Since I was only in for a brief visit, I decided to concentrate on a couple items.

The first is their nice collection of the latest Deborah Lippmann nail lacquers. You know I had to try on a few to test them out.

From left to right: Glitter in the Air

I didn’t have that much method to my madness as far as color selection, but my faves in the bunch are “SUPERSTAR” “RAZZLE DAZZLE” and “ACROSS THE UNIVERSE”.

Another “test” on my way out was a couple of Lipstick Queen’s Chinatown Glossy Pencils.
The Pencil in “Mystery”, although described as purple in color, looks a lot like a Clinique Black Honey Almost Lipstick. Not that Black Honey really needs a dupe, especially one that’s more expensive, but the packaging of this gloss may be more a fit for some. Whatever floats your boat.  The other color featured here, I swear was medieval, which has a backstory from the medieval and artwork to compliment it. It supposed to be complimentary to any skintone, and from swatching it, I think that may very well be true. I do know this color was medieval, but I question weather or not it was in Glossy Pencil form since I can’t find it anywhere online. Maybe I imagined things and the Medieval color was in the Sheer Tint Lipstick form. It probably was.

Any product whore’s visit to NYC will be incomplete without a visit to this West Village landmark. Be sure to visit C.O. Bigelow at 414 Sixth Ave. or at Bigelowchemists.com

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