Thursday, February 28, 2013

Vintage.

Hi everyone!  Today I have a manicure for the last day of the February Nail Art Challenge.  The theme for this manicure is "vintage."  I opted for some vintage roses, which I found inspiration for from a fellow Instagram polish lover (@polishallthethings).  Her roses are amazing and if you have an Instagram I would definitely recommend checking hers out!  I hope to make roses as great as hers one day!

Since the theme is "vintage," I looked through my polish collection for more vintage looking colors.  I opted for OPI Skyfall and Sephora by OPI I Only Shop Vintage (perfect, right?!).  Using a small nail art brush and some acrylic paint, I painted the roses, rosebuds, and leaves on top of I Only Shop Vintage.






And here is a close-up of the roses.



I hope you all enjoyed this post, as well as all of the manicures I have done for the February Nail Art Challenge.  It was a fun challenge to do, and I definitely feel accomplished now that I have completed it.  Phew!


Until next time...

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

NerdLacquer: Don't Blink.

Hi everyone!  Today I have my very first NerdLacquer to share with you.  I have wanted Don't Blink (and of course many other NerdLacquers) for about a year now - ever since I saw a swatch of it on Instagram.  For those of you who do not know, Amanda, the owner of NerdLacquer, went on a break from making polishes due to extremely heartbreaking circumstances in her personal life.  But she is back!  And as soon as I found out she was back, I knew I had to get this polish ASAP.

And alas it is mine!!  This was everything I dreamed it would be and more.  The application was so smooth,  There was no need to dab on the glitter, no fishing for the bigger hexes, nothing.  Perfection.  Pictured is two coats with one coat of Seche Vite.




And here is a bottle shot of this beauty. 


I absolutely love everything about this polish and I am so glad that I have it in my collection.  NerdLacquer can be purchased at nerdlacquer.com.  Be sure to check Google+ (NerdLacquer) for more information about releases and updates.

Until next time...

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

French Mani.

Hi everyone!  Today I have the next theme of the February Nail Art Challenge: French mani.  I can't believe that February is almost over already!! Where does the time go?!

After swatching all of those gorgeous spring colors from the Sinful Colors Sugar Rush Collection yesterday, I was in the mood for another bright and fun manicure.  I did not want to do the traditional white french manicure for this theme, so I opted for the gorgeous bright neon pink by Island Girl.  This is Aloha Sunset.



I am ready for summer- can you tell?!  It is supposed to be 89 degrees here on Friday and I am definitely taking my boys to either the pool or the beach.  We are ready!!

I hope you all enjoy this bright neon French mani :)

Until next time...

Monday, February 25, 2013

Sinful Colors Sugar Rush Collection.

Hey everyone!  I hope you all had a fabulous weekend!  I had a pretty relaxing weekend, visiting with family and friends.  It was so nice to not have to really do anything.  The weather is starting to warm up here in So-Cal and I'm hoping to take my boys to the beach this Friday-  the perks of living in Cali :)

Today I have swatches of the Sinful Colors Sugar Rush Collection released for Spring 2013.  The collection includes eight creamy pastels that just scream Spring!



Sugar N Spice is a creamy bright pink with an extremely subtle shimmer.  The shimmer is barely apparent in the bottle as well as on the nail, but it adds a soft touch to the bright shade of pink.  The application was perfect.  Pictured is two coats to achieve opacity.



Cotton Candy is a creamy medium-light pink that has a subtle shimmer similar to the shimmer in Sugar N Spice.  It isn't too obvious, but adds that soft look to the creme.  This formula was very easy to work with.  However, it was a little streaky and took three coats to achieve opacity.  But the formula is on the thinner side; so although it is three coats, it is not thick like some polishes get with three coats.



Orange Cream is a gorgeous peach shade with the same subtle shimmer.  I love this color! It is so perfect for the warmer weather.  Application was a dream and only two coats were needed to achieve opacity.



Unicorn is a creamy pastel yellow.  The formula on this was fairly thin and resulted in streaky application.  Unicorn took three coats to achieve opacity.



Sugar Rush is a baby blue creme.  The formula was perfect on this, and it applied like butter!  Two coats were needed to achieve opacity.  When I saw this color, I instantly thought that this might be a dupe for OPI What's With The Cattitude? (a major lemming of mine).  Unfortunately, I do not own WWTC to do a swatch comparison.  However, from the swatches I have seen by others on Instagram as well as bottle shots, I would say this is fairly similar to WWTC.  But like I said, I don't own it so I cannot be completely sure.



Candy Coated is a soft lilac with hints of periwinkle and a subtle shimmer.  Application was like most of the others in this collection, only needing two coats to reach opacity.  This is another polish in the collection that triggered dupe alerts in my mind.  When I first saw Candy Coated, I was reminded of OPI You're Such a Budapest, which was released with OPI's Spring 2013 Euro Centrale Collection.



Here are bottle and swatch comparisons of Candy Coated and You're Such A Budapest.  I would say that these are fairly decent dupes of one another.  Candy coated only took two coats to reach opacity, whereas You're Such A Budapest took three.  You're Such A Budapest is a tad darker than Candy Coated and the shimmer is also a litter more apparent, but overall they are pretty similar.




Sweet Nothing is a teal creme.  I was very happy with the application on this one- nearly a one coater!  For the picture below, I used two coats only because I prefer it that way.



This color also reminded me of the Euro Central Collection from OPI, and I wanted to compare it to Can't Find My Czechbook.  Pictured is two coats of each.  Although these are somewhat similar, they are not dupes.  Sweet Nothing is more teal and Can't Find My Czechbook leans more blue.



[UPDATE]  I received many responses regarding the comparison between Sweet Nothing and OPI Can't Find My Czechbook.  This morning I wanted to take some photos outdoors to show what the comparison looks like in sunlight.  Although these two are very similar, I do not think that they are spot-on dupes.  CFMC is more blue than Sweet Nothing.  But if you are looking for a less expensive alternative for CMFC, Sweet Nothing would be a great choice if you aren't concerned about them being exactly the same.

Sunlight

Sunlight


Last, we have Sweet Tooth.  This is a gorgeous light lavender with a faint shimmer.  I love this color!  It was pretty shear with one coat, but the second coat achieved opacity.  When I looked at the bottle I thought that I might have dupes or at least similar colors in my collection, but I am delighted to say I do not!  This is definitely different than any other polish that I have in the purple family.  I like that it has pink undertones to it - it makes it unique!  Pictured is two coats.



Overall, I am very pleased with the new Sinful Colors Sugar Rush Collection.  All of the colors had easy applications and did not need any additional effort to apply.  This is a great addition to my collection, and I am definitely looking forward to the warm weather and abundance of color that Spring brings to the polish world.

What do you all think of the Sugar Rush Collection?  Which colors do you have, or which ones do you now need?

Until next time...

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Ombre Tutorial.

I am so excited to share this tutorial with all of you!  I promised that I would make a tutorial on how to do an ombre manicure - so here it is!  This is what the completed manicure will look like after you follow the steps that I will outline.





First you will need to gather your supplies.  The colors I used for this ombre look are Sinful Colors Sugar Rush and Candy Coated.  You will also need your "finishing touches."  I like to add China Glaze Fairy Dust to my ombre manicures, but that is totally up to you.  You will also need some acetone/nail polish remover for cleaning up at the end and your favorite top coat.



Step 1:  Paint your nails with your base color (don't forget your base coat!) and allow to dry completely.  For this design, my base color is Sinful Colors Sugar Rush.  You can speed up the drying process by using a fast-dry top coat.


Step 2:  Using a clean makeup sponge, place generous amounts of the two colors and be sure to overlap them slightly.  This will help with the blending process.  You will have to do this several times throughout the manicure.  Don't let the sponge dry out- it will remove the polish from your nail.







Step 3:  Lightly dab the makeup sponge on your nail a few times.  Gently move the sponge up and down to blend the colors on the nail.  This will create the transition between the two colors and prevent a distinct line between the two.   The color probably will not appear very much on the nail yet.  That's OK!  Wait a minute or two to allow the layer to dry (or move on to the rest of your nails and by the time you are done with those, the first nail will be dry).




Step 4:  Be sure to add more polish to your sponge.  You want the sponge saturated; otherwise, if the sponge is dry it will remove the polish from your nails.  Repeat Step 3 again until the desired color is achieved.  I usually do this three to four times, depending on the colors used.  Just keep going until you have the look you are going for.  Remember to dab a few times and then gently move the sponge up and down to blend the colors together.






Step 5 (optional):  Add a coat of China Glaze Fairy Dust for a touch of sparkle.  This is optional, but I love the way Fairy Dust completes the look of an ombre.  




Step 6:  Clean up!  You don't want to leave polish all over your skin and cuticles, so grab a small brush or q-tip and dip it in acetone/nail polish remover and clean up the mess that the sponge left behind.  Finish with topcoat.  I used Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat


Viola!  You have yourself an ombre mani!  I would love to hear any feedback you might have.  Let me know how this tutorial works for all of you!


Saturday, February 23, 2013

Ombre.

Hey everyone!  In my last post I mentioned that I had been studying for the TEASV.  I took that yesterday morning, and man was I nervous!  I don't usually get very nervous for tests, but this one I did.  I think the reason was because I felt that I only had one chance at it.  I have already applied to two nursing schools, and will be sending out another application in March, so they need the scores right about... now.  Well, I am happy to say that I did very well on the exam and scored in the top 99th percentile in the nation and the 99th percentile for those in my nursing program!  I have never been so happy with a grade on a test in my life!  Such a relief knowing I did well, and now I can continue on with the application process.

OK, enough about my schooling - on to my nails!  Today I have an ombre to share with you, which is my NOTD (nail of the day) for the February Nail Art Challenge.  I picked up the new Sinful Colors Sugar Rush (Spring 2013) collection at Walgreens, which I will be posting swatches and reviews for soon.  However, I decided to use two of them in today's mani as well.

I used Sinful Colors Sugar Rush as my base color, and then sponged on both Sugar Rush and Candy Coated to create the ombre look.  Then I finished it off with a coat of China Glaze Fairy Dust.







I can't even begin to describe how much I LOVE LOVE LOVE this look!  I will be posting a tutorial in the very near future on how to create an ombre look.  What do you all think of this ombre?

Until next time...

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Nude.

Hey everyone!  I hope you all are having a great week!  As for me, I have been studying my butt off because I am finally taking the TEASV on Friday.  I am in the process of applying for a few nursing schools, and this is a major step in the process.  I hope I do well!

The next theme in the February Nail Art Challenge is "nude polish."  Because I have not had much time to do my nails - studying has been my priority - I decided to keep it ultra simple for this theme and share with you my favorite, go-to nude shade.

I have a few nude shades in my polish collection, but the one I feel compliments my skin tone the best is OPI Samoan Sand.  Some people do not like having a VNL (visible nail line), but I do not mind it with this polish.  I love how clean this looks.  Sometimes it is nice to have a fresh palate after having so many different colors on my nails.



OPI Samoan Sand

Does anyone else have a favorite nude shade?  I am always open to trying more.. of course :)

Until next time...

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Zoya Aurora.

Holy sweetness do I have something gorgeous to show you today!  I am a little late on the Zoya Aurora train, but so glad that I have finally arrived.  I picked up this beauty to send in a swap to a friend on Instagram, and instantly regretted not picking one up for myself.  Of course when I went back it was sold out, but I stalked this baby like none other and finally got my hands on it.  If there is ever a polish that is a must-own, this is it!

This gorgeous purple holographic beauty is so mesmerizing - I can't stop staring at my nails!  Dummy me, I waited to try this polish until it was a cloudy and rainy day outside, so I will have to swatch this baby again to get a sun shot.  But even the light box photos and a cloudy, outdoor shot can't hide the beauty of this polish.





outdoor photo - sorry it's cloudy and raining!
(slightly blurred to show the holographic effect)
 And look at how stunning Zoya Aurora looks in the bottle!


I really wish it was sunny outside so I could show you how absolutely gorgeous this polish really is!  But I hope these shots are satisfying for the time being :)

Who else owns Zoya Aurora?  If you don't, I highly recommend it - a must-have in my book!

Until next time...

Monday, February 18, 2013

Bows.

Hi everyone!  I hope you all enjoyed your weekend!  As for me, I am currently in the process of applying to nursing schools so I spent yesterday studying for the TEAS.  The  TEAS (Test of Essential Academic Skills) is an exam that is administered to pre-nursing students to determine ability to succeed in a nursing program.  I am likely taking this test at the end of the week (if not, then in early March) so I am trying to get as much study time in as possible.

Because I was studying yesterday, I am here today with my next manicure for the February Nail Art Challenge.  The theme for this manicure is "bows."  Not too long after I created my Pinterest account I came across a gorgeous manicure with angled bows at the tips.  I knew that I had to eventually recreate this manicure and to my delight there is a "bows" theme for this challenge!

I used OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls (released last year with the Amazing Spiderman Collection).  I absolutely love this white creme!  This color is not a shade of pure white, but has grey undertones to it that gives this polish a unique look.  I love it!  It was streaky with the first coat, but the second covered everything perfectly.



Using a small angled nail art brush and some black acrylic paint, I painted the angled bows at the tips.  I love how classy, yet fun and girly this looks.  What do you all think?

Until next time...

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Island Paradise.

Hey all!  So I know I said in my last post that I was getting tired of all of the girly manicures I had been doing lately - well, the change up didn't last long.  I guess I am a girly-girl at heart!

Today I have Island Girl Island Paradise to show all of you.  It is a gorgeous pink cream that has lavender undertones to it.  What I love about this shade is how bright it is!  It isn't neon, but it definitely is bright.  I paired this beauty with an accent nail of China Glaze Glistening Snow.  The holographic glitter is amazing in Glistening Snow!  And get this - opaque in two coats!  It's love.



The Island Girl polish was a little thick and streaky, but a second coat cleared up any imperfections.  Overall I really love this polish!  And I love how well these two compliment one another.  The girly pink with a touch of bling!

I hope you all are enjoying your weekend!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Dollish Polish: You're A Real Sweet Tart.

Hello everyone!  I hope you all had a fabulous Valentine's Day and were spoiled by your loved ones!  Since my husband was working late last night, my Dad kindly invited me and my boys over for dinner.  He made a delicious cedar plank Steelhead, roasted red-skinned potatoes, and corn.  It was amazingly delicious!  Even my oldest son asked for seconds on the fish!

Since I have been wearing a lot of pink and cutesy manicures lately, I wanted to do something bright and fun today.  I recently ordered Dollish Polish You're a Real Sweet Tart from overallbeauty.com and it came so fast!  Everything that I have ordered from this site has always arrived within a few days - I love it!  If you haven't heard of Overall Beauty I highly recommend checking it out.  The owner, Kim,  is such a sweetheart too!

Once I received my order, I knew I had to use this polish ASAP.  But I was really wanting to mix it up and pair it with a bright color as well.  I chose to pair this with Island Girl Aloha Girl, which I received in a swap from a friend on Instagram who lives in Hawaii and kindly sent me a bunch of Island Girl polishes.  I can't wait to try them all out as this is a brand that is not available here in California.



You're a Real Sweet Tart by Dollish Polish is packed with gorgeous pastel glitters in various shapes and sizes in a creamy white base.  The first coat was a little sheer, as are most polishes of this kind, but was not difficult to apply.  I used three thin coats, allowing the polish to dry between each coat.


Island Girl's Ahola Girl is a bright teal, almost neon, and dries with a matte finish.  However, I prefer the glossy look so I topped it with INM Out the Door topcoat.  I used two coats in these pictures.


I hope you all don't mind this bright and fun look.  I was itching to do something different after all of these Valentine's Day manicures.  I am really loving this fresh look on my nails!

Until next time...

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

Hi everyone!  I hope you are all enjoying your Valentine's Day doing whatever it is that makes you happy.  If that is spending the day with your loved one(s), going out for a romantic evening, or celebrating with friends, I hope it is a great one!  And for those of you who do not enjoy this holiday, do whatever it is that makes you happy - celebrate being you!

Today's theme for the February Nail Art Challenge is "match OOTD (outfit of the day)."  Unfortunately my husband has to work late tonight so we will not be celebrating the holiday, but I still chose to wear festive colors - on my nails!  I decided to go with a simple chevron mani using a gorgeous lilac and creamy pink-fuchsia.


I used Essie Sugar Daddy as my base and then topped that with China Glaze Fairy Dust for an added touch of sparkle.  I created this chevron look using scotch tape to achieve the clean lines.  The beautiful lilac is Duri Of The Beaten Path and this gorgeous pink-fuchsia is Pink Power, also by Duri.  This was my first time using Duri polishes, which I received in a swap from a friend on Instagram.  I am IN LOVE with these polishes.  The application was so smooth and the opacity was on point.  Both colors achieved complete opacity in one coat.  I have a few other Duri polishes to try and I can't wait to use them.  Here is another look at the completed look.



An outdoor picture to show the gorgeous
holographic glitters in China Glaze Fairy Dust

And here is a bottle shot of the polishes I used in this manicure.


What do you all think of this look?  And what are you wearing on your nails today?  I'd love to hear, as well as what you are doing to celebrate V-day!  Leave me some comments below :)