Archive for July, 2012

(Just Another) Mani Monday: Olympic Nails

First off, I’d like to say again- THANK YOU for all the support, and for all the interest in the giveaway!

As I mentioned on Facebook, I drew the names of the winners last night, and they have already responded!  So big congratulations to Tina, Patricia, and Cayce!!   2 of the 3 winners will have their packages on their way to them tomorrow- the 3rd (at her request) will be getting hers mailed as soon as the Olympics are over.  My first international winner!

Be sure to post pictures on my wall when you make a fuzzy monster mani, guys!

Now onto today’s post- Olympic Nails.   Unless you’ve been living under a rock (which is always possible, I’m fairly in the dark with news a lot of times), you know that the Olympics began this weekend.  Go Team USA!

I will freely admit, this is not my best work.  But the kids were screaming, and I’m sure it’s fun to see the ‘fails’ as often as the wins.  The idea is good though, in my opinion!  Maybe you can recreate it a bit better 🙂

Here’s the first round of polishes I used.  This is OPI’s DS Radiance, Essie’s Penny Talk, a franken thrown together 5 minutes earlier by me, Color Club’s mini gold with no sticker (from May’s BirchBox), and Julep Kate.  (Or in other words- you need white, gold, silver, bronze, and (optional) patriotic topcoat)

I had planned to use Pretty and Polished’s Freedom Calling, but I couldn’t find the bottle for the life of me.  I know it’s around here somewhere.  That is a good one to use though, it’s fairly similar to this one but not identical.  Same idea- red, white and blue mixed glitter.

I painted white on my thumb and pinky, and did the 3 medal colors across the inner fingers, like so:

I think using all 3 colors from Essie’s Mirror Metallics would be good if you have them.  This gold and silver did not play nicely when it came to cleanup, because of the glittery effect.

Next round of colors:

You’ll need black, green, yellow, red, blue, and some straws (cutting them is up to you- but you’ll need 5 ‘sides’).   I used Cult Nails Nevermore, Julep Emilie, Sinful Colors Pull Over, Zoya Sooki, and Sinful Color’s Rain Storm.  For cleaning purposes, I also used a paper plate, but a piece of paper will also work.

Now we’re going to use these colors to create the Olympic rings on our thumb!

 

To make the rings, I dipped the tip of the straw into a little blob of polish.  If you don’t know off the top of your head (I didn’t), the rings go blue-black-red, and then yellow-green below them.  So I began with blue, and worked my way down!

Here’s the tip of the straw with polish on it.  Then you’ll place the straw end where you want the first ring, and gently rock it around to ensure the polish gets on the nail around the entire circle.  On my first circle, I lifted up after just placing it on my nail, and 1/2 the circle was missing.  When I re-did it, it made it look a bit ‘off’.  Do make sure you have a good bit of polish on the straw, but it doesn’t have to be dripping.

My nails, in addition to being shorter, are not very big.  I could *barely* fit the rings on my thumb, and they were all overlapping each other.  If you have slightly smaller nails, I’d advise trying out a coffee stirrer straw instead of a standard one.  If I had any, that’s what I would have used!

My ghetto rings.  At least it’s obvious what they’re supposed to be!

I didn’t take photos of the next step (because my husband wasn’t home to help with pictures), but I wrote ‘USA’ in red and blue polish on my pinky.  I did this using a paintbrush, but you could easily do it using nail art stripers, or maybe even a standard brush if you’re patient.

I then finished it all off with my red, white and blue topcoat over the gold, silver and bronze nails.  Obviously, if you’re not from the USA, Britain, or another r/w/b country, you can use something else to represent your colors!

Believe it or not, I DID clean up those metallic nails.  The gold and silver really don’t like me!

And I didn’t realize my USA was upside down in the swatches until after I’d taken pictures.  I didn’t want to redo the entire nail, so I hope you guys understand 🙂

Go Team USA!  Make us proud!

If you do any kind of Olympic mani, even if it’s completely different from this, please link up on my Facebook page- I’d love to see it and feature it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Indie Wednesday: Polished Components Hydrangea and Future

Today I’m going to be showing off some very pretty indies- Hydrangea and Future from Polished Components!

I picked these up awhile ago, but I just got word that Hydrangea can *no longer be made*.  There’s only a very small number left (single digits), so if you really want it- I suggest you try to grab one quickly!  I’ll post links at the end of the post.

 

First up I’m going to show off Hydrangea.

 

This is a beautiful shade of purple, packed with purple and blue shimmer.  If you’re a fan of simple, understated indies over glitter bombs, Polished Components is a great store to check out.  She offers a little bit of everything!

For these photos I used 2 coats of Hydrangea.   I didn’t use a topcoat, because I knew I would be adding Future to it once photos were done!

Look at that beautiful shimmer 🙂

Next up, I layered 2 coats of Future on top of Hydrangea (although 1 would have been plenty).

Future is a really awesome flakie topcoat.  Ya’ll know how I’m a sucker for flakes!

The flakes in Future are the kind I love- the thin variety that go on smoothly.  They’re a beautiful mix of iridescent purple, blue, and a charcoal color.  The purple are a bit larger than the blue and charcoal so that you don’t see them as easily, but they give off a beautiful color shift.  This is definitely a different mix of flakie colors than any others I have!

Again with this mani, like many over the past week, I did no cleanup.  While it may not look as perfect as it could, if the application is good and doesn’t ‘need’ cleanup, I like to try and leave it as normal as possible for everyone to see what they’d be working with!

You can find Polished Components here on Etsy, and here on Facebook.  She has some adorable new labels for her bottles now too- but I bought mine a few months ago!

Be sure to check out the shop!

I have grand plans of posting something tomorrow, but my track record with ‘unplanned’ posts isn’t good.  So if not tomorrow, I’ll see you all on Friday!

 

 


Try It On Tuesday: Studio M Slammin’ Red

I’m back to normally-scheduled Try It On Tuesday this week!

Today I’ll be showing off Studio M’s Slammin’ Red.  I got this awhile ago in a swap with the ever-awesome Jen from Jen’s Nail Files.  I’m convinced she’s the source of a majority of blogger’s Studio M Purple Medallions 😉

Studio M is only sold in Meijer stores, which are only in a handful of states in the Midwest- which is nowhere near me.  They’re basically Color Club in different bottles- so odds are good you’ll be able to find most shades that way (though Color Club is ALSO not sold around me).

Slammin’ Red is a gorgeousssss red packed to.the.brim with red and silver holo glitter.  I did 2 coats for the photos, but it was almost opaque with 1 coat (just barely a VNL- yes, some nails have finally grown enough that I can have nail lines!).  Not many glitter polishes can claim that!

This polish was a little thick, but was still easy to work with and apply.

Look at those SPARKLES!

Sorry for the slight sloppiness, I did no cleanup on these and a red like this stains a bit 😉

If you pick up this color, I would recommend a base coat!  I didn’t have staining because I used a base coat, but I got the impression that it may stain.

Studio M’s can be found at Meijer stores for $2.99!


(Just Another) Mani Monday: Gradient Nails

Good evening everyone!  Today’s mani came out SO much better than I had hoped.  I LOVE it!

A good friend of mine has been asking about gradient nails for awhile.  While I was very familiar with the basics, I had never actually attempted it before.  So earlier today, I decided today’s post would be a perfect time to remedy that!

In the past I’ve seen a number of amazing tutorials for how to do this, but I went on my own using knowledge I got from everywhere for today.  I know there’s a number of pins floating around Pinterest of this technique.

First off, the supplies!  You’ll need tape, sponges, a white polish, the colors for your gradient, and a topcoat if you choose.  I used Orly Dayglow, Sonnetarium Samurai Princess, Color Club Pure Energy, and Color Club Ultraviolet.

The sponges are makeup sponges (cosmetic wedges) that I got in a giant pack at the dollar store.

First, you’ll want to paint your nails white.  I really like Dayglow- there’s a very very faint blue shimmer to it that’s barely noticeable.  It was part of Orly’s Feel the Vibe collection this summer- and I got it for $1 this weekend at Sally’s 50% off clearance sale!  I’m just sad I couldn’t find the others I lacked 😦

Anywho… on to the gradient part!

Here’s a picture of my thumb nail taped and ready to go.  You’ll want to cover most of the skin- but from experience, don’t cover the painted part of the nail.  I pulled off some of my white basecoat on other nails because the tape was on it, and it messed up the mani a bit.  This will help you avoid major cleanup- but some clean up is going to be necessary 🙂

I also advise taping all your nails first before painting.  The colors I chose were not the most opaque, so I had to do multiple sponge coats for the gradient- it was easier to be able to do all 5, giving enough dry time between them for a second coat.

I dropped a few drops of both colors next to each other on a paper plate, like so.  The sponge is poised overhead to dab!

You’ll press the sponge onto the paint, and then smoosh it onto your nail.  I made sure the ‘line’ between both colors was roundabout in the middle of the nail.

Voila!  To be fair, though, this dark color was after 3 separate dabs.

Here’s the other nails after 1 coat.

And here’s a ‘finished’ picture, before I cleaned up.  You can see the pulling on the middle finger from my tape.

For those unfamiliar with cleaning up a mani- here’s what I do.  I use a small paintbrush- it has a fairly small brush and is also moderately stiff (soft, but holds its shape while I use it).  I dip the paintbrush into 100% pure acetone, and run it along the outsides of the nail and cuticle area, wiping off on a small tissue or pad.  There’s lots of amazing tutorials out there if you need more help!  If you need help finding one, let me know in the comments and I’ll find one.

In my infinite wisdom, I didn’t take an ‘after’ photo of just the gradient.  Whoops!  But you guys get the idea 🙂  I just love where the 2 colors meet to form a blue-purple!

So to make it more fun, I added my very favorite black and white glitter I own, Sonnetarium’s Samurai Princess.

Seriously, I adore this glitter.  Of course it looks similar to Connect the Dots and it’s many dupes, but I prefer this one- it lacks the crazy big hexes that I’ve never liked much.  This is 1 coat of Samurai Princess- some dabbing for placement over my messed up polish sections 😉

SO beautiful.  I am seriously so upset to take this off- but it didn’t take very long to create, so I think it’ll make a re-appearance very soon!

You can find Sonnetarium here on Etsy- she’s in vacation mode now, so you can find her Facebook profile here to stay up-to-date on restocks!

Ultraviolet and Pure Energy were part of Color Club’s Electro Candy collection from 2009… you can still get these online, and I recently saw a set in Ross (for only $8!).

See you all tomorrow for Try-It-On Tuesday!


Nicole by O.P.I. Target Exclusives Part 2: Iris My Case, You’re S-Teal The One, and Mer-Maid for Each Other

This post is not technically late.

Well ok, I originally promised it Thursday.  So it’s late from that date.

Then I promised Saturday.  As I have not yet gone to bed, I still consider it to be Saturday in my head.  So I’m totally still on time.

If you haven’t already, be sure to enter my latest giveaway!

At the beginning of the month, I posted about 3 colors from Nicole by OPI that I found at Target, which you can see here.  I know for a fact 2 are Fall Target exclusives, though I don’t think Look At Me Look At Me! is new.

This past week Target was having a sale on NOPI colors, and I had coupons for them… so I bought the remaining 3.  And here they are!

Mer-Maid For Each Other, Iris My Case, and You’re S-Teal The One!

First up I’m going to show off You’re S-Teal The One.

I know that the other 2 are definitely Target Fall Exclusives, but I’m not so sure about this one.  I think I heard somewhere that it isn’t- but I’m going to show it anyways 😉

You’re S-Teal The One is a pretty bright blue metallic-y shimmer color.  In the bottle it appears that there’s a strong (and beautiful) purple color shift, but that honestly doesn’t translate to the nail. I could barely see any purple once the polish was on- if I squinted very closely at a nail, I could see some purple shift in individual glitters.

This was REALLY bright!  I definitely noticed my nails a lot while wearing this.  This is 2 coats.  It went on fairly well- I don’t think I did much in the way of cleanup for any of these colors.

Next up- Iris My Case!

Iris My Case is a beautiful purple to greenish-gold duochrome.  Like You’re S-Teal The One, the effect was more prominent in the bottle.  However, you could still see the duochrome on the nail- if you look closely in the photos you can see where the effect happens.

A very pretty addition to any collection- I’m really looking forward to China Glaze’s upcoming Bohemian collection, which will be full of duochromes like this but probably more pronounced.  So this one will still be worth having!  2 coats again, not much in the way of cleanup.

And finally, we have Mer-Maid for Each Other!

When I first saw this display a month ago, I didn’t intend on picking this one up because I thought it was for sure a dupe of OPI’s Just Spotted the Lizard (which is a dupe of Chanel Peridot….).  However, I’m happy to say it’s NOT a dupe, and in fact I find it much prettier!

Mer-Maid for Each Other is a very pretty green duochrome.  Like Just Spotted the Lizard it leans golden in some lights, but unlike Lizard it also leans blue.  The base color is definitely a blue green rather than a golden color.

The name for this one is really fitting, because I instantly think of mermaids and the sea when I see this.  Like the others, this was 2 coats with minimal cleanup needed.

I decided to do a side-by-side comparison of OPI’s Just Spotted the Lizard and Nicole by OPI’s Mer-Maid for Each Other.  I completely forgot to include Sephora by OPI’s Mermaid To Order- but I can promise that REALLY doesn’t look anything like these 2.

You can already see from the bottle shots when side by side that they’re nothing alike- but in the store without seeing both together it’s hard to tell.  In the bottle, Just Spotted the Lizard appears to have an AMAZING color shift from the color of Mer-Maid to Order all the way to golden, but that just doesn’t really translate to the nail (seems to be a common problem!).

Just Spotted the Lizard is on my pinky, middle finger, and thumb, while Mer-Maid for Each Other is on my index and ring finger.   I had trouble showing off the color shift of these, but you can see in this photo- the base colors are nothing alike.  Lizard is a greenish gold, while Mer-Maid is a golden green.  Hah, that makes it sound like there shouldn’t be a big difference 🙂

There you have it!  I’d say these are definitely worth picking up if you can find them- they’re at Target and retail for $7.04 (though this past week, they were on sale for $6.50 at Target).  You can also find most of these and the colors from the previous post at Target’s website, too!

See you all in a day for the next Mani Monday!


Polish Monster’s 225 Followers Giveaway!

UPDATE:  I’ve heard from a few people that Rafflecopter is not mobile friendly- it seems rafflecopter isn’t friendly with a lot of things (maybe they need a good competitor, yikes)… in light of this, I’m changing how to enter the giveaway.  There will now be a form linked at the bottom to fill out instead of the link to rafflecopter.

I added an extra fun question that’s mandatory to answer, so that everyone still gets 3 entries and 1 extra for sharing.  Just say Elmo if you don’t care/don’t know!

IF YOU ALREADY ENTERED VIA RAFFLECOPTER, I will manually move you over to the new document.  Of course, you are welcome to re-enter the new way as well.  Just leave me a comment to let me know!

Wow!  Ya’ll, I can not believe I’m already posting my next giveaway!  I actually have quite a few things saved that were intended for the 100 follower giveaway, but we surpassed that and then some while the 50 followers giveaway was live.  And we kept growing!  I decided to make a fun one ‘in between’ larger giveaways- I don’t want to spoil ya’ll too much!

My Fuzzy Monster Nails were a pretty big hit, so I decided to run with that for the next giveaway!  So without further ado, I give you the prizes:

Monster Mani Packages!

Mega Nailattude posted a picture a few weeks ago on Facebook of the *cutest* package of Monster-themed mini nail polishes from Toys R Us.  I died a little when I saw them, and of course ran out and bought a package- or 2.  I originally planned to give the entire thing to 1 winner, and then decided to do this instead!

There will be 3 winners again- and each winner will receive a small ‘Monster Mani’ package!

These include:
-6 Mini Monster polishes (2 glitters, 4 creams)
-Small container of color-coordinated flocking powder
-Small container of rainbow microbeads (in case you’d like to try out caviar fish-egg nails!)
-Package of googley eyes
-Pre-cut felt and foil to help in polish removal  

There may be a few other small mani-related surprises, but I don’t have those yet and didn’t want to delay posting the giveaway I promised!

Like last time, I won’t put any restrictions on who can enter due to location.  I’m fortunate enough to be able to handle the shipping costs for other countries, so I’d like to be able to give my international followers a shot too!  If for whatever reason I can not ship to you and you’re a winner, I will provide something else very awesome.

Also like last time, I’m keeping this simple and straightforward.  You get 3 entries for following on Facebook, and can get 1 extra by sharing.  The giveaway will be live for 1 week (I don’t like dragging things out :)).

So three entries for following me- though this time, I’m limiting it to Facebook.  I didn’t really specify last time, and some of you only followed via Pinterest- which was completely ok based on my rules, but not quite what I had intended LOL 😉  I had thought about adding Twitter, but really I do most of my interactions via Facebook because Twitter still confuses me.  I’m so sorry if you only follow in one of the other ways!  If you absolutely can’t follow via Facebook, enter anyway and just leave an explanation in the box.

You can earn one additional entry for sharing in whatever way you want.  You can do this anywhere- just please link it, or tell me where I can find it to verify.  We did have a few shares that were not public last time that I had to throw out- please, be sure your share is public.

The reason sharing is only 1 extra is because while I love getting the word out, I really don’t want to put my followers that don’t feel comfortable sharing at a significant disadvantage.  I personally do not share very often, so I can’t expect my followers to all do it unless they want to!

[Giveaway is CLOSED]

Good luck!!!


Flakie Friday- Revlon Moon Candy in Milky Way and Moondust

It’s time for another Flakie Friday!

Today I’ll be featuring 2 of the colors in Revlon’s new ‘Moon Candy’ line.

These… aren’t exactly cheap.  They run at around $8 each, which is why you only see 2.  I just couldn’t justify the cost (Imagine that, me not justifying a polish purchase!).  They’re a double-ended polish, which Revlon seems to be releasing a lot of lately.  Crackles, neons, now flakes.

I knew this before I purchased, but sadly these aren’t true flakies.  They’re the thick, mylar flakes that will stick up on your nail and feel chunky.  I still like these kinds of flakes, but they’re not my favorite.

There’s 8 colors total right now, with 2 more set to be released at a later time.  On one end you have a solid color, on the other you have the flakes for ‘layering’.  Most of the time, the 2 colors are coordinated.

First up, we have Moon Dust!

This one comes with a black unnamed color on the other end.  It was a 1-coat polish, though there was a tiny bit of bald spots.  Since I was sticking heavy flakes overtop, I didn’t bother with 2 coats.

This is 1 coat of the Moon Dust flake topcoat.  I had to do a tiny bit of dabbing, but not much.

I honestly was not a big fan.  These large flakes can be a pain to work with- and this one I just didn’t think looked that great.  I bought it because another great write up showed this as being a blue flake- but my bottle is completely different than hers, and mine is just an identical dupe to Color Club’s Covered in Diamonds and China Glazes Lush and Luxe- but not as nice as either (especially Lush and Luxe).   I was sad 😦

The second polish I bought from this line is Milky Way!

This one, I did like.  It comes with a dark grey unnamed polish- and I don’t have a darker grey, so that’s always a plus.  These are also different than any other flakes I have- and as someone devoting 1 day of each week to flakies, you can be sure I have a ton!

The shards in Milky Way look to be similar, though possibly smaller, to Color Clubs Diamond Drops (which I don’t own yet).  Rather than being iridescent, they’re solid silver with a holo finish.

Like Moon Dust, I used 1 coat of the grey, and 1 coat of flakes.  Coverage was ok- only some bald spots and some dabbing.

One word of advice- be sure that bottom coat is dry before you add the flakes.  I was in a hurry, and adding the flakes sometimes pulled my undercoat and completely messed it up.

These also took forever to dry- I didn’t add a topcoat, but usually with only 2 coats of polish the dry time isn’t too long.  Not the case here.

Overall, I’m pretty disappointed.  I’m still happy I bought at least Milky Way, but when these were first announced I was really hoping they’d be more traditional flakies, ala Hidden Treasure or others like it.  But it’s a start!

If you’d like to see a great comparison of the *entire* collection, head on over to SoFlaJo’s writeup here!  You can enlarge any photo by clicking on it to get a closer look.  And also compare her Moon Dust with mine- they look nothing alike!  I want hers, haha!

I need to go out to help with a fundraiser tonight, but I’ve already been organizing pictures for both the next giveaway (I PROMISE it will go live later tonight!) and my NOPI Target post.  That was supposed to be for yesterday, but my week was more hectic than anticipated- but photos are edited, so I will have it set to post tomorrow.