Monday, December 27, 2010
The only issue with this one (and probably every other chrome) is that it shows any little speck of dust or dirt or fuzz. As long as you use a ridge filling basecoat and make sure your nails are nice and clean, it shouldn't be a problem. Also, brushstrokes are very minimal (yay!).
My sister got the purple one which is also awesome, and hopefully I can borrow it from her someday to swatch it as well.
I love this one so much - it looks SO cool on! Thank you, Ama!!
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Do you have any of the Ulta exclusive OPIs? What do you think if this one?
Friday, December 17, 2010
So here are my new rounded nails with an old favorite of mine: OPI You Don't Know Jacques. This is such a wonderful fall/winter color, and it was the perfect glossy creme to test out my new nails!
Because the rounded shape isn't very apparent in this picture, here's one that shows it a little better.
How do you shape your nails? Do you stick to one shape or change it up often?
The Orly is more pitch black than the ChG, which is much more of a charcoal jelly that builds to a black in two coats. Honestly, I CAN tell the difference in person, but I doubt anyone else would notice. The ChG looks deeper, like you're looking into a black pool, while the Orly is darker and looks more like a shiny black surface like patent leather or vinyl.
Now here is my new way of mattify-ing polishes. Honestly, I never got into the matte trend much, but I like it sometimes. Usually I'll take an existing color and use ChG Matte Magic over it, but I hate how it always seems to lighten the color or make it cloudy looking. I got this new buffing block that feels like the buffing surface is just the foam, and not a separate piece of "sandpaper" like on some. I just lightly buffed the topcoat (in this case, Seche Vite) once it had dried in long sweeping motions. Here is the result:
I REALLY like how it comes out. Yeah, it doesn't come out too matte - more like a satin finish, but I think I prefer that anyway - and it shows a bit of buffing stroke lines, but the best part is the lack of cloudiness! I've been considering getting Illamasqua Scorn because of how gorgeously dark it is for being a matte (or satin) black, but I may have found a new way to satisfy the craving.
Here is a picture of the buffing block I used:
What do you think of this way of mattify-ing a polish? Have you ever tried it before? Do you have a favorite matte topcoat?
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Isn't it BEAUTIFUL?? I love this dark blue/purple super-shiny creme. It only took two coats (barely even needs the second coat) and applied very smoothly and evenly. I suppose it can sometimes have that "almost-black" look to it, but only in really low lighting.
I'm thinking of stamping some snowflakes on this one to make it a little more festive... what do you think?
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
This is China Glaze Mommy Kissing Santa with Orly Hair Band as a glitter gradient on the tips.
This was the beginning of the following manicure - gold French tips done with OPI Glitzerland. Then I stamped the holly leaves in Jolly Holly using a Bundle Monster plate and dotted the berries first in OPI Royal Rajah Ruby then in China Glaze Red Pearl.
Which one is your favorite and which one should I submit to the festive fingers contest? Help me decide!
Monday, December 6, 2010
The first is Silver Dazzle, and I think it's my favorite of the glitters. It is a cool-toned charcoal grey glitter that really sparkles with a topcoat. It actually looks pretty cool without a topcoat as well - it has a gritty, matte look which looks very wintry to me. It would also probably look neat with a topcoat and a matte topcoat (to get rid of the rough glitter finish). This is two coats shown.
The other glitter I picked up was Gold Glitz. This is ONE COAT! I love warm-toned golds, as they tend to look better on my skin, and this one is perfect. It's a very beautiful holiday color! I didn't pick up the red, purple, or blue glitters because I have some similar, and I'm trying not to buy nail polishes that I have near dupes of (but the One Coat Glitter formula is pretty awesome, so it might be worth it!). If you'd like to see swatches of those, check them out here!
There are two Jewel FX polishes in the collection, and the first one is called Gems. It is a whole bunch of multi-colored glitter in all different sizes. While the One Coat Glitters contain a whole bunch of microglitter, this has only larger pieces, and it makes it a little easier to clean up (though still hard to remove). It is rumored to be a dupe of Lippmann's Happy Birthday, but it's actually missing the pink/purple glitter (you can see a swatch of it here). Other than that, it's VERY similar with the different shapes, sizes and colors of glitter. This one reminds me of a nutcracker for some reason, and feels like a holiday color, though you could wear it year-round. This is three coats, though the last coat was more of a "touch-up" to cover any bare spots. The glitter in this has to be controlled a little to "place" it in the right spot, but it's not too hard to do.
This is Gold Jewel FX, and I think this is as "mirror-like" as you can get without having Minx. It is truly spectacular in person. It's cool-toned gold, but luckily it still looks nice on me, and I will SURELY be wearing this one (I don't even care how painful the removal will be). This was two coats, and again it's best to push around the glitter to place it where you want it, especially on the second coat. It was SO easy to clean up (I took it off before it dried) because the big glitter pieces don't get EVERYWHERE like the microglitter does. Here's another pic to try and show off this "mirror" finish.
These could all be a horror to remove, but if you remember the foil method for glitter removal, then they shouldn't be too bad. Just soak a cotton ball in pure acetone or acetone polish remover (I usually split the cotton balls in half so I don't use as many), place it on the glitter polish and wrap it in aluminum foil (so that it doesn't evaporate). Wait for about 5-10min before pressing down and sliding it off. Be sure to moisturize your fingers after soaking them in the acetone!
I can't decide what to put on my fingers and toes now! I kind of want to do Gems on my toes because it'd go with anything I could think of to put on my fingers :o)
Do you like these new glitters? Are you willing to put up with crazy glitter removal for these beauties?
Sunday, December 5, 2010
Saturday, December 4, 2010
Friday, December 3, 2010
I love the effect Sugar Sparkle gives - I think it makes it look like a sugary Chrismas candy! I'm thinking of making a "gumdrop" mani with CG Mrs. Claus, Mistletoe Kisses, and Grape Juice. Are there any other colors you think I should add into the mix?? This over each one might give them an even more sugar-coated appearance.
Any holiday mani ideas that you'd like to see?
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
China Glaze - Emerald Sparkle
Now I have a whole LIST of holiday manicures to try before Christmas, and today I was looking for a perfect "Christmas tree" manicure. I wanted it to look like a green Christmas tree with lights/ornaments on it. Here are the combinations I tried out. I originally had CG Nova on the ring finger, but it covered up the green WAY too much (that one is OPAQUE, let me tell you! Two coats would make a completely opaque mani, I'm sure!) so I redid the ring finger in just Emerald Sparkle so I could compare it with FingerPaints Evergreen Dream.
My favorite ended up being the Hot Topic stars (doesn't have a real name) minus the actual stars (haha) because it has just a smidge of iridescent glitter that doesn't "take over" like the Color Club Si Vous Please did. It's hard to see in the photo, but it adds just a bit of multi-color to the green. I thought the CC and Fairy Dust were just too much.
Notice that I did my thumb in FP Evergreen Dream. This is such a wonderful alternative to Emerald Sparkle when you don't want to have to deal with the painful glitter removal. It's actually a green shimmer, but looks SUPER sparkley in the daylight and sun. It's not quite as deep or rich as ES, but it's still freaking gorgeous. Anyway, I decided to save the glitter hassle of ES for when it is closer to Christmas, and opted for the easier Evergreen Dream this time.
FP Evergreen Dream w/ Orly Prisma Gloss Gold
And here is my Christmas Tree mani! I used Orly's Prisma Gloss Gold over Evergreen Dream, and HOLY GOOSES I love it! It has the perfect amount of "colorful lights" glitter!
Are you excited for the holidays? Have you been doing holiday manis? What do you think of the Christmas Tree mani?
Monday, November 22, 2010
One of the best parts about OPI glitter, in my opinion, is that instead using of holo glitter for extra color, they actually use different colors and sizes of glitter. Instead of becoming quite dull in the shade and indoors like holo glitter can, it maintains its super colorful "party confetti" appearance no matter the light.
This picture was taken on day 3 of the manicure - no chips and very little tipwear (which was probably actually caused by Seche Vite shrinkage anyway).
This was taken in the sun on the 4th day, and it still looks perfect. Glitzerland just glistens (no pun intended, it's true!) in the sun! It's nearly as sparkly as Bring on the Bling!
I have more accent nail manicures to show you coming soon!
Do you like the accent nail thing? Texting thumbs or other fingers?
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Zoya KellyZoya Kelly is a marvelous dark grey that never ever looks black. It has a blue-ish undertone to it, but it still maintains that neutral grey "goes-with-anything" vibe. Sometimes I have a little trouble with Zoya formula (when paired with their small brushes), but this one was very nice. It's not too thin, doesn't dry while I'm applying it, and comes to a beautiful glossy finish. This is two coats shown.
And because I've been wanting to try some "accent finger" manicures, I figured I tried it with this one (since I have the thumb unpainted while swatching). This would be one of those "texting" manicures where the thumb (used to text) is much more flashy while the rest are a nice classy creme or shimmer. It's a bit ridiculous, but I kinda like it. I decided to pair Kelly with Zoya Edyta because it has the same grey base while also having smokey green sparkle.
Zoya Kelly w/ Zoya Edyta Accent
What do you think? Are you in love with Kelly? Do you like the "texting" manicure, or is it too off-the-wall?
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
China Glaze White-Kwik-SilvrThe first up is China Glaze White-Kwik-Silvr, and I have to say it's gorgeous. I hesitated to get this one since I just recently bought Frosty (from the 2010 winter collection), but I'm glad I got it. It is, however, NOT big 3 free, and it shows in the awesome formula. It's nice and thin and very easy to apply, and even though it doesn't get completely opaque in three coats, it still looks so clean and nice.
Since I had Frosty to compare it with, I decided to do some side-by-side swatches.
2 coats Frosty, 3 coats White-Kwik-SilvrThis is two coats of Frosty on my index and middle finger, and three coats of White-Kwik-Silvr on my ring and pinkie. They look very similar at this point, but the difference came out when I added one more coat.
3 coats Frosty, 4 coats White-Kwik-SilvrThis picture shows the opacity differences. Frosty is completely opaque at three coats, while White-Kwik-Silver still has VNL at four coats. Also, you can see in this picture that Frosty has a more white/silver shimmer to it, while White-Kwik-Silvr has a light gold shimmer, though both have a clean white base color. Frosty was a bit more thick, but still nice. If you couldn't find White-Kwik-Silvr, Frosty is probably worth picking up! Both are awesome!
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Rescue Beauty Lounge Au ChocolatThe second one is Au Chocolat. It's a reddish-brown creme/jelly. It has nice buildup to opacity in just two coats, but somehow manages to have that glossy jelly look. It's very nice, and doesn't look black even in low light.
Rescue Beauty Lounge Orbis Non Sufficit
This is such an awesome green, and I'm so glad I got it because I have nothing like it in my collection! The dusty quality really sets it apart. It's also almost perfect in one coat, but I like the slightly thicker look of two coats.
Rescue Beauty Lounge No More War
I also got Medium White, but it doesn't look right by itself in my opinion (even after three coats), but I may do an America/French manicure with it to show it off in the near future.
Overall, I'm very pleased with all of the polishes I got from this sale. They are all of excellent quality and I will certainly be wearing each one more than once! The sale is no longer going on, but you can still purchase RBL polishes here.
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Let's start with some nail prep. Here are some of the things I use to prepare my nails before applying the Incoco strips.
First, I remove all old nail polish with acetone nail polish remover (the non-acetone nail polish remover is for when I have nails that have an acrylic repair on them). Then, I file the length done and shape the edges. Finally, I buff the ridges on all the nails that need it. I know some don't like to buff the nails because it can weaken them, but if you don't buff lightly, the Incoco tends to show the ridges - the cremes especially. Another possibility is to use a ridge-filling basecoat, but I prefer to use NO basecoat under Incoco because it makes application a bit more difficult. After filing and buffing, I make sure to wash my hands thouroughly to get all the dust off and make sure they are clean and dry.
Here is a picture of the goodies they sent me to review! Exciting, yes?
I decided to do Head Over Heels today, but I will post a review of Just My Luck as well in the near future.
As you can see, it is a cool-toned magenta with some red and blue sparkles - pretty awesome! When I peeled off the backing to the strips, they look like more of a jelly than a creme because they are see through! However, no visible nail line to be seen at all! Check it out!
In the shade, it's just a little shimmery, but still a very pretty color. In the sun the sparkles in it are a lot more apparent, but it's not super bling-y like a glitter or a glass-fleck shimmer. I really like it, and I'm not much of a pink person!
After the prep, I just followed the instructions provided by Incoco, but I have a few tips as well:
1. Don't use a basecoat. The Incoco will stick like glue to a basecoat immediately, allowing for no correction after it has been placed. Without a basecoat, if you make a mistake, it's very easy to just peel it off and reapply it.
2. Don't be afraid to handle them lightly with your fingers. If your hands are clean, there should be no dust or anything to stick to the strips (which aren't extremely sticky). I prefer to flatten the strips out before I position and place them, and stretch them to fit the nail edges.
3. When choosing a size, I think that the best way is to choose slightly smaller rather than bigger. It is quite easy to stretch the strips to fit the nail, but I have more trouble when I try to file off excess that hangs over the nail onto the cuticle.
4. I like to gently push back the cuticles right before applying the strip in order to get it as close as possible to the cuticle so that is lasts longer without getting a gap - especially if I'm planning on wearing them for a week or longer.
5. Practice makes perfect. This is a difficult one to accept sometimes, but in my case it was true. Each timeI found another little tip/trick that worked for me and I got much better at it each time. Also, some colors are easier than others. The glitters, for instance, are the easiest to apply perfectly in my opinion, while the cremes are the most difficult to get nice and smooth because they seem a bit thinner.
Overall, I love Incoco and their awesome product! I have tried the french tips (which make for PERFECT smile lines), the black creme (Midnight), and a couple of the glitters (24 Karat and Penny Rose). 24 Karat is my absolute favorite and as soon as I tried it on, I knew I had to order more of that one! It lasted 11 (ELEVEN!!) days with NO chipping and NO tipwear! Even then, I wasn't sick of the color, it had just gotten quite a gap and I was anxious to try some other Incoco colors! I just wish they weren't quite as expensive as they are
I will try the nail polish removers when I take these off and comment on the wear at that time as well
So what do you think? Have you tried Incoco? Do you like the idea of stick-on nail polish?
Friday, November 5, 2010
I used Essie Sew Psyched, Obsessive Comelsive Cosmetics Swamp Thing, and Barielle Chashmere or Lose Me, because these looked as close to the Chanel Khaki collection as I could get without paying $75. I got the idea from All Lacquered Up's post here. In person, it looks much closer to the browns and green you see in her post, but for some reason my camera didn't like the colors...
Anyway, Emerald Sparkled is having an awesome giveaway with great prizes! You should check it out and enter here!
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Anyway, after Halloween, I was really wanting a nice brown fall color, and I couldn't wait to try Zoya Cheryl from my latest Zoya order. It's a gorgeous brown color with copper glass fleck shimmer. I was a little disappointed though because I was expecting it to have much more sparkle to it.
I did use Zoya's Anchor and Armor for base and top coat since I hear that Zoya polishes do not last as long with others, but Armor didn't give me the awesome shiny look that Seche Vite does, so I ended up putting that on top of the Armor. But then, of course, it caused some shrinkage (you can see it at the tips in the picture).
What do you think of Halloween nails? What are your favorite designs and colors? Do you like Zoya Cheryl?
Friday, October 22, 2010
Isn't it so neat looking! It has (from what I can tell) black, blue, and iridescent small glitter, with large holo hexagon silver glitter. This was taken in artificial light and doesn't show the holo-ness, but trust me, it's there! I'm definitely going to try this one over lots of other colors.
I also have the red glitter Revlon Slipper from the same collection that I got solely because of Scrangie's post here. Seriously, how awesome is THAT?!
What do you think? Did you like this or any of the other glitters in the recent Revlon collection?
Thursday, October 14, 2010
It's really neat-looking in the bottle because it's a crazy copper/orange fine glitter mixed with a bunch of fine silver holo glitter. Outside, the bottle looks like the base turns black while you can still see both colors of glitter. On the nail it turns out to be a bit less spectacular, but still pretty awesome. I tried the first nail (my index) with Trick-or-Treat on its own, and it's a little "dirty" looking, so I decided to try layering it over other colors (2 coats layered on each color, 3 coats on its own). Shown below are Trick-or Treat over (thumb to pinkie) China Glaze Marmalade, by itself, Essence Get the Fever, Barielle Make it a Latte, and Wet'n'Wild Black Creme.