30 January 2013

OPI's Shim-merry Chic

Have you ever purchased a polish and put it with your untrieds, and months later pull it out and wonder why you ever bought it in the first place? Of course you have, we all have! Well, this is one of those polishes for me. OPI Shim-merry Chic is a frosty, sheer, shimmer, flakie polish that kind of looks like it's just going to be a giant hot mess in the bottle. I mean c'mon... frosty and flakies don't really mix, right? This is two coats of OPI's Shim-merry Chic over two coats of OPI's Suzi Loves Cowboys.

With a blend of large orange flakes, small green flakes, and golden-green shimmer all wrapped up in a brown frost base, Shim-merry Chic is an underdog. I really didn't think I would like this one, but after I painted my nails I'm okay with it. Do I love it? Nah, not really. But I don't completely hate it either. For now it lives another day in my OPI drawer!

What have been some of your impulse polish purchases? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

28 January 2013

Nail Art: Grid to my Heart

I've seemed to make late night posting a habit! Although I must say it's mostly due to the fact that my mother and I have become addicted to Downton Abbey and have been catching up on on Hulu. We just finished season two, so no spoilers! haha!

I did my mom's nails earlier this evening (it's something we do every Monday night) and she requested some nail art for this week's manicure. And not just nail art, but she specifically requested that it be fast nail art. If you have ever spent time doing nail art on your nails you know it's not usually associated with the word fast. I decided that a simple criss cross design and a little contrasting heart on her ring fingers would be one of the quickest, most eye catching designs I could do quickly. She likes very noticeable nail art because her store customers really enjoy seeing what is on her nails!

I used Essence's Sweet as Candy for the sheer base, and Lilla's Smalto 35. The Lilla is a beautiful purple polish that my best friend brought back for me from her trip to Italy! I used a basic white striping polish for the white lines. I think I'll be treating my mom to a full spa manicure next monday.. I feel horrible that her cuticles aren't in tip top shape when I'm right here to treat her to it!

Do you enjoy doing someone else's nails, or is it a hobby you have for just your personal enjoyment? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

27 January 2013

Milani Cyberspace

Holographic polishes are the perfect middle ground for people like me who hate glitter removal but love a good sparkly manicure. Especially scattered holographics! Everyone sings the praises for a linear holo but I feel scattered holos are a little less loved but just as pretty. Milani Cyberspace is a lovely light blue that catches sunlight and creates beautiful little rainbow flecks on your fingernails. You know, the kind that get very distracting when you're driving and you can't stop glancing at your mani! You know what I'm talking about! ;)

I've swatched this polish before, but when I decided to wear it today I just couldn't help but share it again! I hope you all don't mind!

Do you prefer linear or scattered holographics? What's your favorite holographic polish? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

26 January 2013

OPI Sea Ya Later, Sailor!

I seriously cannot stop staring at my nails. You know how when you really like your nail polish and you want to touch everything just so you can look at your fingers? No? Just me then? Well, that's what this color makes me do. I feel like I have mermaid nails guys.

Today's swatch is of the very pretty OPI's Sea Ya Later, Sailor!. It's a sheer teal leaning blue layering polish with purple and aqua iridescent shimmer. Oh yeah, it's gorgeous! I've had this polish for a while but never knew what to layer it over (much like my bottle of Austin-tatious Turquoise) until I swatched China Glaze's For Audrey last night. Since For Audrey gives me lobster hands I wanted to jazz it up a bit and that's how this beautiful combination happened. They are perfect together! This swatch is two coats of Sea Ya Later, Sailor! and one coat of Poshe top coat. 

Don't you love it when you find a great layering combination? Let me know in the comments! Also, please tell me I'm not alone here on the pretty-polish-makes-you-touch-stuff-more thing, okay? Thanks for reading!

*This post was supposed to be published on Thursday but my computer wouldn't recognize my camera's SD card ): so there will be multiple posts today!

China Glaze For Audrey

Why must gorgeous blue teals like this one always give me lobster hands? I really like these colors and I actually own a few polishes like this one, but I hardly ever wear them because of how it makes my fingers look ruddy. China Glaze For Audrey is a fan favorite China Glaze polish and it's modelled after Tiffany blue, but all of you already know that. This is two coats over one coat of OPI Nail Envy, no top coat. Please excuse the rough cuticles, doing shipment at work is not kind to my hands!

What polish colors do you love but don't mesh well with your skintone? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

*This post was supposed to be published on Wednesday but my computer wouldn't recognize my camera's SD card ): so there will be multiple posts today!

22 January 2013

My Favorite Cuticle and Hand Products

Quick post tonight because I really, really like wearing OPI Diva of Geneva and I couldn't bring myself to take it off and re-paint my nails today! So instead I get to share my favorite hand lotion and cuticle balm with you guys!

I actually got this hand lotion as a gift for free from my job at Bath & Body Works. It's the True Blue Spa Paraffin Super Softening Hand Lotion. Whew, that's a mouthful! I really like this lotion because it has a very light citrus scent that's not overpowering, and it absorbs very quickly and doesn't leave hands feeling greasy. Plus, it works really well at softening my cuticles and moisturizing any dry areas on my hands.

The only downside is that it's a bit pricey at $12 USD for 2.5 oz. However, I'll give you an insider tip! We usually have the minis of this product priced at 3 for $12, and you actually get half an ounce more product for your money if you purchase the three mini tubes rather than the one large tube. Plus the minis are perfect for your purse! Another tip- if you try this out and really like it, we sell a 5oz size for $18.50 and it's the best value per ounce out of all the other size options. When I run out of this product I'll definitely be purchasing the large version. And with all the coupons and offers BBW has you're bound to get a couple bucks off the full price depending on how smart you are with your timing!

My other must-have item is probably the most common cuticle product in the nail community so it should come as no surprise that it's Lush Lemony Flutter! I got this product for my birthday last summer, and it really works for healing rough cuticles in just a few days. It's pretty amazing stuff! I don't like how greasy it is, and how I kind of have to stop and allot 10 minutes to not touch things and let it soak in, but it's completely worth it for the benefit it provides.

Again, this product is kind of pricey and retails for $17 at Lush. I don't have a Lush store anywhere near me so I also have to factor in shipping and handling from ordering online. On the plus side, a tub will last you a really long time. Mine expires roughly a year from it's purchase date and I don't doubt at all that it will last until then!

Do you use either of these products? If you haven't tried the lotion, I encourage you to stop by your local Bath & Body Works and test it out! Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

20 January 2013

OPI Diva of Geneva

Holy purple goodness batman! This color is Fabulous with a capital F. Why oh why did I wait so long to swatch it? I'm talking about OPI's Diva of Geneva which is a gorgeous purple-pink with hot pink shimmer. The swatches below are one coat of OPI Nail Envy, two coats of DoG, and one coat of Poshe top coat. Application was easy and I found the formula simple to control and apply smoothly.

I'm really enjoying this nail length and shape surprisingly. I've always wanted medium length squares, but this rounded nubbin thing is a lot stronger and more flattering for my hands. Squares sadly always seem to be flimsy and break with my nails. bummer man.

What's your favorite nail shape? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

16 January 2013

Nail Art: I've Got a Sweet Tooth

When I'm working with pink and blue my mind seems to revert to sugary snacks, and in this particular case it might have something to do with all the names of the polishes I used. Anyway, I forgot how much I loved the leopard print stamp from konad! Seriously, this one stamp adds so much pizazz and sass to a manicure just by adding a touch (get it?) of animal print. I knew I wanted a fun color to go with my leopard spots, and what's more fun than glitter?

I started with three coats of Essence Sweet As Candy, a sheer ballet pink that's a nice change from plain clear coat for a translucent base. I added two coats of Nails Inc. Sweets Way on my ring fingers and thumbs, and then stamped the leopard image from konad plate M57 in Sinful Color's Snow Me White and filled in a few spots with OPI's What's With The Cattitude? and a dotting tool on the other nails. And voila! Instant sugar overload.

I really really love Sweets Way and I think I'm going to have to use it for a manicure by itself soon, it's so adorable!

What's your favorite stamping plate image? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

13 January 2013

OPI's I'd Like To Thank...

Goodness gracious, what a week of decongestants and medicines will do to dry out your skin is crazy! I've been moisturizing like nuts but my cuticles are going to take a while of some babying to recover, so please forgive any little dry or rough bits you happen to notice in today's swatch. Speaking of which, today's swatch is of OPI's I'd Like To Thank... which is a polish I acquired a couple years back in a vacation haul from a dusty. I picked it up because it had a strong duochrome in the bottle but unfortunately it doesn't translate onto the nail. It's a reddish pink frost (although not outrageously frosty) that has green and pink micro flecks that catch the light (you can see a bit of it on the pinky!). I'm not a fan of frosts but this color is actually pretty flattering and makes my fingers look long and lean which is always a bonus! I didn't really have a problem with too many brushstrokes being visible in person even though you can see some in the picture below. This is two coats with an easy and cooperative formula.

Granted it's probably not everyone's cup of tea but I'll be keeping this one in my collection for now. I have a feeling it'll look even prettier with a bit of a summer tan! Thanks for reading!

12 January 2013

Nail Art: Spot On and In Frame

I hope you're all having a wonderful weekend so far, mine is definitely looking up now that I'm feeling much better than I was earlier in the week! These nails have to be some of my favorite nail art I've ever done, and it's really simple! I'm not sure how the idea for these nails came to me, but after I sketched them out I knew that I was going to like them a lot. These nails are my mom's, but I can't wait to do this design on my own nails.. I'm thinking this design would be neat in multiple color combinations, not just gold/white/black (although that's my favorite).

The base is China Glaze Liquid Leather, the spots are Sinful Colors Snow Me White, and the gold outline is Orly Luxe. I did the various sizes of polka dots with dotting tools and added the frame with a thin nail art brush. I'm kind of bummed that the dots smeared a little on her pinky, but it wasn't very noticeable in real life.

Are you as crazy about polka dots as I am? What do you think of this nail art? Let me know in the comments, and thanks for reading!

10 January 2013

Get your Flu Shot Folks.

I wanted to have a post up today but the flu hit me yesterday morning. I've been trying to do posts as I paint my nails so they're time accurate, but it's hard to find motivation and not be nauseated by the smell of polish with a fever of 102.7 degrees (and that's with two doses of tylenol in me). I should be improved by Saturday so I can do a post that day. I'll be making up today's missing post with an additional post next week. I appreciate the understanding, and I'm sure you all know how frustrating it is to be sick! <3

On another note, I'm really enjoying OPI Nail Envy as my base coat. The nail art I did at the end of last week is still going strong, with only a minor chip on my right thumb and light tipwear due to not wrapping my tips very well. I'm impressed so far!

08 January 2013

TAG: The Seven Deadly Sins

I first saw this tag on Elsa's blog, and it looked like fun so I decided to participate on my blog as well! I hope you enjoy reading my answers, and I'd love to know your answers as well so feel free to leave a post link to your answers to this tag in the comments below. (I also changed one of the questions because I felt it was a duplicate to another question in the tag!)

1. Greed: What is the cheapest nail polish in your stash?

I have quite a few polishes that I've gotten for less than retail, but I think this polish from Cosmopolitan Magazine is my cheapest one- I got it for free! It was a promo a long time ago where you sent a text message and they mailed you this polish. The name of it is "Wild Thing" and I've never even bothered to swatch it. Maybe I'll show it on the blog now that I've been reminded that I have it!

2. Wrath: Which polish in your stash do you have a love/hate relationship with?

Definitely M.A.C. Little Girl Type. It's not so much that I love/hate it as it is that I don't want to purge it, even though it has a troublesome formula that doesn't wear well on me.. and that I happen to have two dupes to it in my collection! But it's the only polish of this brand that I have, and I swapped to get it, so it stays with me for now.

3. Gluttony: How many polishes are currently in your stash, and do you ever think you'll stop adding to your collection?

As of right now I have 223 polishes, and that's after a rather large purge! And no, I don't think I'll ever be completely done collecting. There are always new colors and styles of polish coming out and I'm always open to adding new pretties! I do think that as time goes on I will refine my collection by purging polishes I don't wear in order to make room for new ones.

4. Sloth: Which polish do you hate wearing because of the trouble you have to go to when either applying or removing it?

Ugh, this pretty much applies to all the glitter bomb polishes I own! Glitters are so wonderful and they majorly appeal to the sparkle-crazy side of me but removal (even with the foil method) is a pain in the butt! Maybe I should try the glue method but I'm worried I won't get decent wear time. Have any of ya'll used the glue base coat trick? How did it go for you?

5. Pride: Which polish are you proud to own?

This one is pretty simple for me to answer; It's my original version of OPI's My Private Jet. Even though holographic polishes are pretty easy to come by right now this one is still a coveted polish and it was one that I was really thrilled to find when dusty hunting. Even though I have another charcoal/black holographic polish now, I think I will always have a soft spot for this bottle. Plus, mmmmmmm.. rainbow-y goodness.

6. Lust: What polish do you wear when you want to feel sexy?

As cliche as it sounds, the color I feel sexiest wearing is red. Especially a vampy red. Well, any vampy color in general gives me a little boost of confidence when I wear them. This one in particular is Essie's Lacy Not Racy.

7. Envy: Which polish is your biggest lemming, and you envy those who own it?

Photo from Stef's nail blog. 
Well my lemmings change all the time but a long-time desire has been the original Lynnderella Ribbon Candy. She had a couple new bottles up on ebay last time I checked, but they look different than this version I have pictured. It's one of those "never gonna cough up the cash for it" polishes that I adore but will likely never own, so I just drool over this picture on my pinterest board!

I'm tagging all of my lovely readers to participate in this tag, blog or not. If you don't have a blog, just fill out the tag in the comments below!

What polishes answer these questions for you? Let me know in the comments, and thanks for reading!

06 January 2013

Nail Art: Sunrise Stripes

The funny thing about inspiration is that it never really comes to you the exact same way twice. Sure, it's easy to peruse nail art boards on Pinterest and find several gorgeous manicures thought up by much more talented girls than myself that I would love to replicate, but there is something much more satisfying about finding inspiration for a manicure idea that is all your own.

I found my inspiration for today's manicure by browsing the blog of a clothing website I frequent to see when the winner of a contest would be announced. I definitely wasn't there looking for nail art ideas, but one found me none the less. As soon as I saw the picture below, I instantly saw it in terms of nail polish colors (I can't be the only nail blogger who does this!). A background of Zoya Caitlin with various metallics layered in thin, 'dry brush' style stripes.

Image Credit: Threadsence
My nail art skill set is lacking, but since I had just purchased my first real set of nail art brushes I figured it would be a fairly easy manicure to execute so I gave it a try. I haven't done nail art in a long time so I'm a little rusty, but I really like the results and I hope you do too!

The base is three coats of Zoya Caitlin, and I used the following polishes to add the stripes: Icing's Chrome Green, Icing's Chrome Copper, Pure Ice Busted, China Glaze Admire, China Glaze Harmony, Orly Luxe, and BK Crystal Sand. The entire manicure is topped off with a coat of Poshe. I wish I was a little more patient and skilled so that I could have done thinner and softer stripes, but practice makes perfect. This was overall really easy nail art and it made for a sparkly yet subtle manicure.

What's your favorite way to find inspiration for nail art? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

05 January 2013

Zoya Caitlin

Happy weekend everyone! Today's post is a swatch of Zoya Caitlin, a purple leaning blue with gray undertones. I've used this polish before as a base for Butter London's No More Waity Katie, along with some summer pedicure art a while back! This is a flattering creme that is opaque at three coats. I think I may need to add some thinner to my bottle because it was a bit streaky and tricky to apply and I don't remember it being like that! Good thing we have thinner, eh? Anyway, onto the swatch!

It's a quick post today gals, but I have some nail art I'll be posting tomorrow, so look out for it! As always, thanks for reading!

03 January 2013

Nail Care Haul: New Products To Try!

So I'm always really excited to try new nail and cuticle care products, and these are some I've been hankering to buy for what seems like forever! I went to ULTA yesterday and picked up OPI Nail Envy and CND Solar Oil (the mini one), and I got Rainbow Honey's Cuticle Balm in my Christmas stocking.

So far I'm liking the RH Cuticle Balm for quick touch-up moisturizing on the go and it's a perfect thing to throw in my purse. It's not as heavy duty as Lemony Flutter, but that is to be expected. I like RH for daytime use and I stick with LF for my morning and night time cuticle regimens.

As for OPI Nail Envy, this is a product I've been really really wanting to try! My nails have always been prone to tears and peeling so I'm interested to see if this product will help strengthen them so I can grow them out strong! I know it's going to take a couple months of consistent use to really see a true change but I'm willing to give it a go.

This is another product I've heard glowing review about, so might as well add it to my cuticle product stash! I really want my cuticles to be in tip-top shape for swatching and pictures. They tend to dry out pretty quickly so maybe adding an oil will help them retain some moisture.

Once I can get these products into my routine and use them for over a month or so I think I want to do a post about what products I use! There are a couple ones I've never mentioned on the blog and it seems like a blogger-rite-of-passage type post so I guess I should have done one a while back! Anyone interested in a post like that?

Do you own any of these products, or are you dying to try them as well? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!

01 January 2013

All That Glitters: A Spotlight on Sparkles

First of all, Happy New Year everyone! Let's all start this year off ambitious, productive, and positive... and then inevitably forget about all that and get back to your typical mood and routine a week from now. #realitycheck

Kidding, kidding! But hey, when we're all still in the holiday and celebration mood why not rock some glitter bomb polish? I know it's one of my favorite types of polish to wear around the holiday season and I'm always looking for new sparkly manicures to inspire me. So I've compiled a listing of glitter manicures I've done in the past, along with a couple new-to-my-blog glitter swatches. So pop some bubbly and get ready for the glitz!

First up is a tribute manicure I did to a glitter gradient that was done by A Polish Addict. I really loved her mani and I still think it's lightyears ahead of mine because of the glitters she used. I started with a base of OPI's Metallic 4 Life and added Pure Ice Strapless and Essie's Stroke of Brilliance. This is new to my blog, but I posted it on MUA when I first did it a couple months ago!

This next one is a very happy glitter.. Rainbow Honey's Koi Pond. Filled with multi colored and various shapes of glitter, it definitely qualifies as a true glitter bomb. I have it over a navy blue in this swatch but I'd like to try it over a purple creme or in an orange jelly sandwich! You can read my original post on this one here.

Now as we venture into the next two glitters, we also come upon some older swatches. I know a lot of bloggers apologize for older swatches, but with every new year comes improvement and it's nice to see how far I've come since I first started blogging. Anyway, the next two swatches are of two China Glaze glitters; Ruby Pumps and Dorothy Who. Sometimes a glitter doesn't have to be over the top to be completely stunning! You can read my original post on Ruby Pumps here.

I meant to post this next swatch on my 2nd Blogiversary but it didn't end up happening. But you get to see it now, and it's Deborah Lippmann's Happy Birthday! This very popular glitter polish is happy, fun, and full of colorful multi-shaped glitters that will make your nails party ready in just a few strokes.

And to round off this post, yet another glitter gradient! I did this one a while back for my mom after she fell in love with the blue gradient I was wearing (yep, the first one in this post!). She prefers to wear pinks and reds so I pushed her a little to accept a dark purple-pink and some seriously shiny glitter on her tips. I used OPI DS Extravagance as a base, and various pink glitters for the gradient- sorry, I don't remember the exact ones I used because I mixed quite a few!

Well lovely readers I hope you enjoyed this little feature and I hope you're prepared for all the things ahead in this new year! Enjoy your last few days off of work with family and get inspired to make your nails dazzle all through the winter months with glitter! Thanks for reading!