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Showing posts from February, 2012

Cha Cha Nails Using Allll the Colours!

I spend a lot of time on the internet, reading other people's blogs and getting ideas.  One in particular jumped out me today, Carmen Miranda nails by the lovely Sarah from chalkboadnails.  I loved the ruffled look and had to try it out for myself.  
I don't have quite the same colour theme as the original, mostly because I just picked colours at random, hoping they'd be as opaque as possible.  It turned out this was pretty easy to do.  Starting with a white base, I painted a rough strip of American Apparel Malibu Green at near the cuticles.  This one's a bit of a bleeder, hence the green cuticles :(.  Then taking each successive colour and the largest dotting tool I had, I dotted on a line, covering the previous row's edge.  It's nowhere near as neat as Sarah's but I'm happy with the result.  It's colourful!

Review: Can't Get Finger Paints Special Effects? Get Ludurana Flakies Instead!

Whatever would give you the impression that I'm sour over not being able to find the Finger Paints Special Effects collection?  It couldn't possibly be my scouring the internet to find flakies of any description, my purchasing of five from Llarowe's store and definitely not my defiant evil laughter when these arrived!  Ahem, anyway, I've talked before about my frustration at not being able to get the Finger Paints anywhere and to help me move on I picked up five flakies from a brand I've never tried before, Ludurana.  I tried to get them to cover roughly the same colours as the Finger Paints and I ended up with a decent range.  Let's take a look!
First up, let's take a look at how they fit in a colour range and which is which.  

Review: Orly Galaxy Girl Swatches in a Glitter Gradient with a Twist

Over the past week or so I've been having a lot of fun trying out different techniques.  Acrylic paints last night, manually placed glitter Saturday and Sunday nights, tape earlier, it's been a lot of fun.  Probably my favourite technique has been the manually placed glitter, it just has such a special, sparkly effect and I always <3 sparklies.  So what with getting Orly Galaxy Girl in the mail yesterday, I wanted to try out the last glitter in my set and do a glitter gradient...with a twist.
First up, let me say how much I love Orly Galaxy Girl.  I was lucky enough to pick up this member of the Cosmic FX collection from nailpolishcanada as they had this and Space Cadet in stock recently, even at a normal price which is amazing.  It's an absolutely gorgeous glass flecked duochrome, shifting from a grape purple to blue and pink in the light. Application was decent given the duochrome glass flecked - these can be sheer - and what you see here is three coats.  Check out s…

Rainbow Grids, or Experiments with Acrylic Paints

I've spent quite a bit of time lately trawling the internet for ideas for different manis.  A pattern I've noticed is that everyone uses acrylic paints for the less standard designs so of course I had to pick some up at a local art store.  I couldn't decide what to paint so I went with a design I've actually painted on canvas before, a grid with rainbow squares!
As this was a real experiment, I kinda winged (wung?) everything.  First up I started with two coats of Joe Fresh White as a base, as a white base never hurt anyone.  Then, with my narrowest paintbrush, I carefully drew in the lines for my squares.  Moving on to the slightly larger brush, I filled each square in. Finally, and this is the step I was worried about, I added a coat of Seche Vite.  I'm really surprised, each of these steps went off without a hitch! Now I get to have super colourful nails for tomorrow which is second only super sparkly in terms of making me happy! 
In case you're wondering w…

Review: A Glitter-splosion with Sephora It's Bouquet with Me and Essie Jamaica Me Crazy

I reeaaallllllllly should stop buying nail polish.  I've only been at this a couple months but my Helmer is already nearly full! I'm going to have to start hiding polish around the place as I'd get in trrrouuuble if I bought another drawer set.  Shame it's really hard when the lovely lady at my beauty supply place (TBBS in Toronto, if you're in the city) keeps giving me deals and there keep being spring colours all over the place :(  On that note, let's look at two new polishes I picked up over the weekend, Essie Jamaica Me Crazy and Sephora by OPI It's Bouquet with Me!  Yay for looking at the pretty colours, not bank accounts!
It may seem like I'm doing this backwards but I wanted to talk about It's Bouquet with Me first.  Omg do I love this glitter.  Tiny holo, silver and pink glitter in a purple-tinted base, it's so sparkly it will almost blind you, but in a way that you'd be ok with cos it's not a bad last sight to see.  Sephora by …

More Hand-Placed Glitter with China Glaze Winter Berry

After experimenting with rhombus-shaped glitter in yesterday's green mirror-ball mani, I couldn't help but play with more glitter.  In the same kit as the silver glitter where two little pots of tiny red and blue hex glitter.  They might have been a lot smaller than the silver but I consider this a challenge!  The hardest part was to resist going for a silver base coat as I really wanted to avoid the red-white-blue theme.  Choosing the vivid red China Glaze Winter Berry, I coated up, put on another episode of Criminal Minds and went to work!
Before I go any further, let's look at Winter Berry.  A cheerful, um, blood red jelly-creme from China Glaze, application was decent though a little sheer.  I have such strong stains on my nails, anything other than the most opaque of polishes shows them through.  I should have added a base coat with this one but I couldn't be bothered taking it off again.  A problem I found with this one was that in cleaning up the red went every…

Mirror-ball Nails!

Lately I've been trying to get a bit more creative with my nails.  I've visited arts and crafts stores and dollar stores, hoping to find something I could stick on my nails.  I was in luck at a very shady dollar store yesterday and found a "Nail and Sparkly Art Decoration Kit" for the bank-busting price of $1.99.  Sold!  Inside was this tiny bottle of rhombus-shaped silver glitter and I just HAD to try them out.
Before we talk about the glitter in detail, let's look this lovely kelly green, Revlon Posh.  A new colour from Revlon, it's a really pretty and applies really well.  What you see in the pictures below is two coats.  
Once Posh was applied but still tacky, I took an orange stick, spread the glitter out on on piece of card and set to work.  As the polish was still a little wet, it was easy to stick them down.  Working left to right, I lined up the glitter so it would create a checker-board pattern.  Time consuming, but worth it!
Now, here's where …

Who Says You Can't Combine Magnetic Polish and Tape?

I've been blogging for almost two months now and have posted over a hundred posts, which is quite a lot of different manis.  One polish type I haven't tried in this time are magnetic polishes as I've always found them a little uninspiring.  Sure, they create interesting patterns but it's a bit gimmicky.  As a last ditch effort, I thought I'd try experimenting with taping, see if I couldn't create something a bit different.  Hot damn, does it ever create an awesome look!
First up, I wanted to find a good, bright complement to Nails Inc Trafalgar Sqaure, a charcoal grey magnetic polish.  I think one of the things making me less enthused about magnetics are that they all come in such boring, dark colours.  Hence my choice of another American Apparel polish, Neon Orange.  This polish I was surprisingly impressed with as I've had a lot of issues with neons being really sheer of late.  This one was actually opaque in two coats and is a nice, sunny yellow-orange.…

Review: China Glaze Prismatics Part 2 - Optical Illusion, Prism and Full Spectrum

Last week I was lucky enough to come across the entire China Glaze Prismatic collection and I just had to have all of them, right then.  I'd been looking forward to this collection as I love glitter and I love something different.  This collection is particularly unique, and I don't think I've seen anything that is nothing but glitter but still managing to pull off a duochrome.  I reviewed the first three colours in the collection here, check them out to get an idea of how they span a range of colours.  
Don't forget, I'm also running a giveaway for someone to win the ENTIRE collection!
Alrighty, I hope you're comfy as we have a lot of pictures and three polishes to go through.  First up, Optical Illusion, the "blue" of the collection.  I have to say, in the bottle I wasn't that excited about this one.  Being a bit blue, teensy bit green, it just didn't seem to be as duochrome and special as some of the others.  Man, did I change my mind once…

Review: Nicole by OPI OMB with Bonus Bow French Tips

I really have to stop going to drug store, I'm looking at you Shoppers! It seems like each different location has different sales on at different times so it turns it into a game for me to find new things and sale and then it's pretty much over from there.  Tonight I was passing by a Shoppers and what do you know, the entire Justin Bieber line from Nicole by OPI was on sale for $5.50 each.  As much as it pains me to be grown woman buying Justin Bieber nail polish, I sucked it up and picked up a few, cos you know, one sale so it's totally fine!
Anyway I've had a twist on a french mani in my head for a while.  A red base, navy tips with a second line under the french tip with a tiny bow accent.  I figured that OMB (urgh) would be a good polish for the base as it's a really nice, strong foil red.  Although my camera has issues with bright red, trust me, it's far more red than the pink it kinda looks here.  Application was ok - this is three coats - but it's s…

Review: Lacquistry I Wear My Jewellery on My Nails and Devil's Dandruff!

It is a happy day indeed for me today.  Not only did I get EIGHT Lacquistry polishes in the mail today (that's what I get for looking at Etsy when I'm a little drunk) but I booked flights to go back to Australia for two weeks with my wonderful friend Marlo! So excited I had to use the most sparkliest polish in the whole world to celebrate!  Today I'll be looking at Lacquistry I Wear My Jewellery on My Nails and the lovely Marlo will be showcasing Devil's Dandruff.  Please excuse the number of exclamation marks above and inevitably below, it's been quite the exciting evening!
First up, let's take a look at the polish that immediately jumped out at me as I unpacked all my lovely polishes tonight, I Wear My Jewellery on My Nails.  This one's going to be a little hard to describe as it's a jumble of the most mirror-like holo hexes I've ever seen, tiny silver and holo glitter and holo bar glitter!  Hot damn did this come out sparkly.  What you see in th…

A Most Dangerous Mani...

You may recall yesterday I had some fun experimenting with my new pinking shears (scissors with a zigzag blade).  Those scissors weren't the only thing I found in my local arts and crafts shop - I also found micro beads which means I finally get to try one of the most dangerous looking manis I've ever seen...  
Let me walk you through what I did. First up, I applied two coats of a new Rimmel Lasting Finish Pro I found called Lava Red.  A dark brownish-red, it's a nice shimmery duochrome.  Next, I applied a think coat of Seche Vite to one half of my nail and taking a pair of tweezers, carefully stuck a micro bead, one at a time, into the polish.  Surprisingly they stuck nicely.  Add another coat of Seche Vite to the other half of your nail and repeat. Add a final coat of Seche Vite over the top.  DO NOT ADD ANOTHER COAT, no matter how much better you think they'll stick.  You'll just get cloudy patches like me. 
CHECK IT:

Review: Nerd Lacquers Part 2 - Outed by a Robot and Crunchy Frog

It's been a little while since I first got my latest shipment of Nerd Lacquer polishes in the mail and I just wouldn't be doing them justice without finishing the reviews started here.  On a side note, I managed to get a bunch more when the Nerd Lacquer Etsy store was open so super excited to try more!  I love chunky, different glitters and the two we'll be looking at today, Crunchy Frog and Outed by a Robot, are no exception.
First up, Crunchy Frog, a name I simultaneously love and hate, a brown shimmery polish packed to the gills with silver and green glitter in medium hexes, small hexes and SQUARES.  Have I mentioned how much I like square glitter?  Surely it has to be easier to make then hexagons.  You just don't see it!  Anyway, application was decent for this polish, the photos below are three coats you could probably get away with two.  I prefer not to use a base colour for polishes like this as I have problems with it showing around the cuticles.  I'd rath…

Experiments with My New Pinking Shears

If you've read even a couple of my posts you might have noticed that I have trouble leaving a plain colour be.  Stamps, taping, dots, you name it and I wanna try it.  Given I had some time on my hands over the weekend I decided to hit the arts/craft shop to see what I could find that I could conceivably stick on my nails.  Did I ever hit the jackpot with a pinking shear set with FIVE interchangeable blades.  I was a bit miffed at first when I realised they were safety scissors but with enough speed and tension they cut through tape nicely.  The problem was what then to do with them! SQUAAARES!
First up, I want to talk a little about my base colour, OPI Russian Navy.  I don't want to just gloss over this as it's a really pretty purple/navy with tiny, tiny orange and blue shimmer particles.  I did have a few issues with the application as the blue tends to bleed everywhere when you try to clean it up but whatcha gunna do.   Take a look at the fourth picture down, see if you…

Review: Two A England Polishes - Perceval and Bridal Veil

My usual accumulation of parcels that arrives on a Monday happened on a Friday this week and man, did I get some doozies.  A couple of weeks ago I placed an order with Llarowe for a nice selection of flakies effects as I'm still chaffing about the Finger Paints.  They will eternally be my white whale, unless someone wants to do a trade :D? Anyway, in for a penny, in for a pound and so I chucked two A England polishes in there too.  OMG do I love these.  I have to order more but first let's look at Perceval.
Perceval is the most beautiful metallic red I think I've ever seen and man, did it freak out my camera trying to photograph it.  Of these pictures I think the first is the closest to the colour in real life but I added the others to get a closer look at the consistency.  Applying these polishes was an absolute dream, I don't think I've come as close to the mythical one-coater as these two.  What you see in the pictures below is two coats but that's just me…

Review: Sally Hansen Thinking of Blue + Bonus Red French

Every couple of weeks or so, a friend of mine and I make the comparatively epic journey to Sally's in northern Toronto.  The first few times we went it was awesome as they're the one place I know of that sells Orly and Finger Paints.  However, the past few times we've been my opinion of them has fallen drastically because 1) they don't see a problem selling an two entire cases of Finger Paints Special Effects to one person and 2) never getting anything new.  So, to spite them, I went to the Rexall nearby and bought all the on-sale polishes!  Notable in the polishes I picked up was the following, Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Thinking of Blue (urgh, pun-tacular).
I've always been a fan of the Complete Salon Manicures as I like the brush and the application is always simple.  Thinking of Blue was no exception, it applied nicely in two coats.  It's a really pretty blueberry creme, too.  As I can't leave manicures along, I just had to give my nails r…

Giveaway for Reaching 100 Posts!

So I've been blogging here for coming up on two months now but I've already managed to get to 100 posts!  To celebrate, I'm giving away the FULL COLLECTION OF CHINA GLAZE PRISMATICS! These are incredibly hard to find but I love you guys and want one of you to experience the awesomeness too.

Enter below, someone is gunna win allllll these:




I Can't Believe It, I Actually Got a Water Marble to Look Marbled

Ahh water marbling.  Made to look so easy on youtube videos, so hard to properly pull off in real life.  I've been struggling with of late and it's been bugging me that I haven't been able to pull off the proper "marbled" effect.  Talking with my mum over Skype tonight (I'm in Toronto, Canada and she lives in Australia) her curiosity made me want to try, once again, just to get it to work.  Everyone say hi to my mum now, she reads my blog :D:D
I must have made the ritual sacrifices in the correct order tonight because, joy upon joy, I ACTUALLY GOT A WATER MARBLED MANICURE TO LOOK LIKE MARBLE! For this particular iteration, I used Essie Vermillionaire and Fifth Avenue, China Glaze Papaya Punch (marbling is all it's good for, it applies terribly) and Orly Green with Envy.  





The Verdict:  Part of what's been bugging me about this technique is that it's been so hard to pin down what hasn't been working.  The big problem I've been having latel…

Review: American Apparel Neon Red + Tribal Stamping

I'm not sure how interested you are but I'm actually a web developer by trade.  Writing this blog has been really interesting for me as I'm learning - from the content side - how to give you the most interesting posts and photos.  One of my biggest sources of traffic is for the American Apparel polishes as there just aren't that many reviews and pictures out there.  I stopped by the store the other day to see if there were more polishes I could swatch out and that's when I came across Neon Red.  NEON RED.  I love a good neon and trust me, this one doesn't disappoint, unlike stupid Orly Hot Shot.
As I've mentioned a couple of times, I have horrible, bright green stains on my nails from I-don't-even-know-what.  This causes a bit of a problem as a lot of the polishes I want to try out, like neons, are kinda sheer.  Hence my surprise when I found out that Neon Red actually covers really well.  And it's eyeball-aneurysmly bright, which is always a plus.…

Review: Nails Inc Special Effects Glitters - Bloomsbury Square

I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with Sephora.  I love that they created their own incantation of OPI for their in-house brand.  I hate that they want me to pay $18 for a magnetic polish (hate more that I did).  Right about in the middle are the Nails Inc polishes.  At $11.50, they're pricey and for the most part, unexciting.  However, they released a line of "3D Glitter" polishes (I'm still not sure what that means....) that are sparkly enough for me to overlook the price tag. 
Bloomsbury Square is an absolute glitter bomb with purple micro glitter and pink hex glitter in a clear base.  With a lot of these, they appear opaque in the bottle but when you apply them, hole city!  This one was actually pretty good, building up a nice opacity with three coats.  OMG IS IT SPARKLY ONCE YOU HAVE IT ON.  So sparkly I think I'm still seeing glitter dots in my eyes. 




I wasn't sure about the glitter combo in the bottle but on it merges together nicely.  Both up …

Dammit Water Marbling, Why You Hate Me

So after the excitement of the China Glaze Prismatics, I had a little time to myself.  Continually taunted with one successful water marbling under my belt but severalfailures, I wanted to try out a rainbow marble again.  I gathered ten different colours from red to pink, fetched my room-temp water and got to work.
This is what I ended up with, after 45 minutes:

Review: China Glaze Prismatics Part 1

Alrighty everyone, hold on to your eyeballs as we have quite the number of pictures to go through tonight.  As I described in my predominately upper cased post earlier, I found the complete set of China Glaze Pristmatics! After a fun-filled evening of Scrubs and fumes, I've got the first three in the set to show you.
Application was the same for all these polishes so this applies to all three:  it's good.  These pictures show three coats but you really could get away with two.  Don't bother with a black undercoat unless you just want  the one coat.  I experimented with black with the one I finished with (which is now covered in the death throws of Polarized *deep breaths*) and it just meant I had to clean up the edges to get rid of the black.  All of these are completely opaque after two coats anyway, don't bother. 
First up, Polarized.  Literally as I'm typing this though, I just knocked this off the table and it's broken at it's incredibly late and I jus…

Haul: THE FULL PRISMATIC COLLECTION!!

Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee has been the sound I've been making all night tonight as when I happened past my local beauty supply store they had just put out the new China Glaze Prismatic Collection!! After the bitter, bitter disappointment about the Finger Paints Special Effects, there was no way I could let this amazingly sparkly, duochromed collection pass me by!  
I'll be swatching these shortly but I just had to show you how pretty and complex they are in the flesh!

Review: Orly Androgynie is Such as Disappointment

I've talked a little in the past about how much I like an unusual polish - something other than just your usual colours or glitters.  When I saw Androgynie from Orly floating around the tubes, I knew I had to have it.  Colourful glitter in a black base? Sign me up!  Given it was part of the holidays collections, it wasn't easy to come by, making it all the more appealing for me - I always want more the things I can't have.  The bottle finally arrived the other day and yay, it looks awesome in the bottle!  Imagine my disappointment when it is BORING on the nails.
First up, let's look at the application.  Being a non-creme base, it took three coats to build up opacity, which is fine.  What I wasn't ready for was how the glitter a) was a pain to get out and b) just disappeared.  I really liked the black-blue-purple look you see in the bottle but it just doesn't do it on.  SO disappointed.  

Review: Sensational Scarlet is the Closest to Ruby Slippers I've Ever Seen

I've been pretty good lately in starting to tone down the amount of polishes I buy.  Yes, I do realise how non-committal that sentence was but whatcha gunna do.  This blog is the best excuse to just buy all the things!  Which lead me to Shoppers Drug Mart on Sunday after a long brunch.  There, sitting in amongst all the other usual Nicole by OPI's, was the most spectacular red I think I've ever seen, trying to be all like "yeah, I was totally here all the other times you were here".  Sensational Scarlet just had to be had.
Anyway, on to the application.  I was surprised at how well this one applied given the amount of glitter sitting inside.  What you see in the pictures below is three coats on its own with good coverage.  Looking at this more closely, it's amazing just how much glitter is in here.  Hex holo glitter in two different sizes and red glitter, all suspended in a scarlet jelly.  I've always had a thing for reds and this one wouldn't have b…

Review Part 1: Nerd Lacquer Hyperspace Bypass and Fento III!

As I talked about earlier, I'm so super excited as I got four new Nerd Lacquer polishes in the mail! And omg, are they so different and interesting.  Let's get right to it, so many pictures and things to talk about!
First up, we have the absolutely stunning Hyperspace Bypass.  A bright mustard yellow with silver, black and holo glitter, it certainly meets my awesome criteria by being nothing like anything else in my collection.  Application was really good on this one.  I have really strong stains on my nails and what you see here three coats, reaching complete opacity.  Application was nice, it dried fast and I was able to get a good distribution of glitter without much effect.  Doesn't it just punch your eyeballs in the face?

Haul: Four New Nerd Lacquer Polishes!

I love Mondays as odds are it's nail polish delivery day!  Super excited, got four new Nerd Lacquers in the mail!  I'll be swatching these tonight, check back soon for what these all look like on.  In the mean time, drink in (but omg, don't literally drink it like that horrible link that's been floating around the internet today) the close-up goodness.
Check out the review part 1 here :)

Review: Finally, finally, Finger Paints Special Effect Flecked!

OMG guys, I finally got a hold of one of the Finger Paints Special Effects!  Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!  Ahem, excuse the excitement but I don't cope especially well when I want something and it's magically sold out and you can't buy it anywhere, as is the case with Special Effects collection from Finger Paints.  It's an embarrassingly long time to the one and only Sally Beauty store in Toronto and I made it three times to see if they had these, to be told the first two times that they'll totes be getting them in and then the last that one person bought two cases and they're sold out.  You can't even buy these online, save for a ridiculous ebay auction.  My wonderful friend Other Laura (as I'm Laura) managed to find me a bottle while in the States and omg is this pretty. 
Flecked is a flake glitter top coat, with pieces shifting from blue to green.  I have a couple of other other flakies like Shine of the Times but was always a little put off by the oran…

Crazy Valentine Dots

I've been torn lately.  Valentines Day is just a few days away and I've been undecided on whether to jump on the whole themed bandwagon.  There are lots of ladies out there doing great work, I've just been unsure of whether I could really just do a hearts and kisses manicure.  It's just not really my thing.  As a compromise, and to make sure of the splendid new Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in All Fired Up, I present to you a rather crazy dotted mani, based off this tutorial.
First up, let's actually look at All Fired Up.  I'm not sure if this is a new colour or just new to me, but it's the most fabulous shade of coral red I've seen in a while.  I've always liked the Complete Manicure polishes as they apply well and I like the flat, wide brush.  This one's no different.  Being more of a jelly than a creme, it was a little sheer and let the terrible stains on my nails show though.  As a side note, have any of you had any luck removing blu…

Review: American Apparel Violet Panache in Swatches

When writing this blog, I try my hardest to pick the polishes and write about what you all are most interested in.  Looking over the analytics for this blog, I've noticed that American Apparel Smoke Dazzle is search term I get returned by the most.  Given American Apparel isn't that well known for nail polish, it's interesting that it would be my biggest hitter.  It must mean there are lots of you out there that are looking for swatches and can't find them.  All this of course, is a long segue into my review for another American Apparel polish, this time a lovely blue-purple duochrome called Violet Panache.
Starting off, I applied a coat of Sally Hansen Navy Baby.  Given that this is a blue polish, I prefer to use a navy over a black.  Tends to blend better around the edges.  Next up, two coats of Violet Panache.  This polish created such a good effect going on.  Looking at it closely, it's almost clear but completely jam packed with flecked glitter.  I nearly sto…

Review: Lacquistry Lake Placid on Acid

Man, I don't think I've ever actually reviewed a full collection of polishes I've received in a haul before, this must mean I got quite the good haul! I'm still sad that Across the Universe - a polish I'd been coveting for ages - arrived on the same as my Lacquistry order.  The Deborah Lippmann is in the same vein as this latest polish, featuring green and blue glitters in a blue base but I have to say, it just isn't that impressive compared to something like Lake Placid on Acid.
First up with a glitter is finding the right base colour.  For the review today I started with a coat of one of my favourite teals, American Apparel Malibu Green.  I have to say, the AA polishes are some of my absolute favourites as the application is just so good.  One coat of this is perfect under this glitter.  Next up, two coats of the star of the show, Lake Placid on Acid.  LPOA is a polish with a collection of green and blue glitters in large and small sizes in a tinted base.  J…