Tuesday, December 30, 2014

A week of birthday manis!

Hey guys! 

My birthday is coming up on the 5th of January, so I'm dubbing the next 7 days, the week of birthday manis! So let's jump right into the mani that I decided to kick off with! 

Here's what I used: 

I started with Zoya Anchor and then I laid down a base color of two coats of Zoya Kitridge on my index, middle, and pinkie. I moved on to putting two coats of Zoya Noir on my ring finger and thumb for GLITTAAAAA! Once all of that had a chance to dry a little, I used a makeup sponge to do the gradient on my index and pinkie. I used Zoya Kitridge and Margo for the gradient. 

I went over each nail 3 separate times, adding more polish to the sponge each time so that it didn't dry out. Immediately after completing the gradient, I added a coat of Seche Vite to seal it all. Moving on to my middle finger, I added some white dots using Orly White Tips and my pink dotting tool and allowed that to dry. 

While the dots dried, I pulled out my Cici&Sisi plates (the pink set) and used plate number 11 for the cupcake. I stamped it with Zoya Willa and then filled it in using Zoya Margo and Orly White Tips. Once it had dried, I applied a coat of Seche Vite over it so I could make it into a decal. It took about 5 minutes to fully dry so I could remove it with a pair of tweezers. This is what it looked like:

I placed a thin layer of Seche Vite on my nail and then gently laid the decal on it. I sealed the decal on with one more coat of Seche Vite and voila! Here's another look at the final result: 

What do you guys think of this tutorial style blog post? What would you add? 

Hope you like this mani and thank you for reading! 

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Girl, get that blog back up and going!

Hey y'all! 

Gosh it's been a while since I posted anything here. I wanna make a bunch of excuses but let's just agree that I'll be doing my best to keep it up again. 

I've been participating in so many different monthly challenges so my manis have been sort of all over the place lately. I really feel that participating in many challenges gives the me greatest opportunity to grow my skills as a nail artist. 

The most exciting news I have is that I got a new light box for Christmas - the Standscan Snap and I'm thrilled with the results. Now, finally...on to the mani! 

Tonight's mani was prompted by the #pymdec2014 challenge on Instagram. Day 29's prompt is Aurora Borealis so I chose a simple water marble. This was the first time I did a water marble over a black base and boy, am I ever pleased with how it turned out! Here's what I used: 

I started by laying down a base of Zoya Anchor and followed that with 2 coats of Zoya Willa as my base color on all nails. Then I used some of the Maybelline Bleached Neons from the summer: Pink Punch, Bleached In Peach, Citrus Collide, and Day Glow Teal with Sinful Colors Tempest as the colors for my water marble on the middle two nails. After that dried, I topped the marble nails with 2 coats of Inm Northern Lights and sealed all the nails with one coat of Seche Vite. 

I used my Elf Cosmetics Concealer brush to clean up around my cuticles and voila! Finished product: 

I am giving consideration to taking step by step pictures for future posts, almost as a tutorial. What do y'all think of that idea? Do you like blogs that show tutorials? 

Thank you for reading! 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Fall is for matte manis!

I was feeling something simple and a little on the darker side today. It's chilly and grey outside so I needed something that matched. Then I switched gears at the last minute because sparkles! 

Here's what I used: 

I started with Zoya Anchor to protect my natural nail. After that dried, I used two coats of Zoya Genevieve from the Entice collection. I put one coat of Fresh Paint Sugar Crush over that and topped with Seche Vite so my polish would dry quickly. Once it was dry (I waited a total of about 7 minutes), I put a coat of NYC Matte Me Crazy on top to mattefy it. I am really happy with the result: 

Matte ALL the nails! What do you think of this look? 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Breast cancer awareness nails

I realize that I haven't posted in a while. I got behind! I also decided that I would start including pictures of the polishes and/or stamping plates I used. So here we go! 

I'm participating in a Halloween challenge on Instagram called #bhbspooktober and today's prompt was black cats. I decided to incorporate my black cat into a BCA mani. I kinda love how it turned out. πŸ˜ƒ

Here's what I used: 

I started by laying a base of Zoya Anchor down to protect my nail. Then I did two coats of Dermelect Opulence as the base color. Then using a makeup sponge, I did a white to pink gradient using Dermelect Opulence, Sinful Colors Social Ladder, and Broadway Nails Jenny's Pout. I did two rounds of sponging for the gradient. Immediately after finishing each hand, I topped my nails with INM Northern Lights top coat. Once my nails were dry, I used Sinful Colors Snow Me White and my smallest dotting tool to create the ribbon on my middle finger. I finished the mani by stamping the cat from Cici&Sisi plate #10 with OPI 4 In The Morning. 

And here's the finished product! Sassy cat says, "SAVE THE TATAS!"

It's sort of a quirky manicure but I kinda dig it. What do you think of this look? 

Monday, September 22, 2014

Nail Polish Indie Brand Swatch and Review

Hey everyone! I am very excited for this particular post as it is my first time doing a swatch and review for an independent nail polish brand! Jodi of Nail Polish Indie Brand was looking for bloggers to send samples of her polishes to in exchange for some honest reviews of them. I volunteered and here we are! How cool is this? I feel like a REAL nail blogger now!!

Okay, onto the lacquers in question! Jodi asked me to pick 5 polishes that I wanted to try so this is not a cohesive collection or line of polishes - just randoms. In the collage at the top of the page you see all 5: Peridot Wings (top left), Magma (middle left), Barbie Girl (bottom left), Mystery 4 (top right), and Penni (bottom left). Overall, I have to say this about Nail Polish Indie Brand - their customer service is amazing, they are very communicative, and the shipping was very prompt. The polishes arrived very well packaged so as not to break and each polish was in its own little decorative bag. How cute is that? All of her polishes are 5 free, meaning they do NOT contain:

  • Toluene
  • Formaldehyde
  • DBP- Dibutyl Phthalate
  • Formaldehyde Resin
  • Camphor
 They are all hand mixed and manufactured in the United States. Alright, on to the individual polish reviews. 

The first polish I swatched was Peridot Wings from her Skylanders inspired collection. This swatch shows 3 thin coats, no top coat. It almost feels textured with no top coat. It is a green jelly polish full of peridot glitter that is absolutely stunning when the light hits it. The formula was a tiny bit tricky because of how much glitter is in this polish but if you take the time to do thin coats with a few minutes in between to dry, its not too bad! I was thinking during the application process that this would make a nice topper as well because it glows in the dark. All in all, a fun and unique polish.

The second polish I swatched is called Magma and its from the same collection - Skylanders inspired collection. This polish is like nothing I have ever seen before - an orange jelly base with holographic bar and micro glitters. The swatch shown here is 2 thin coats and no top coat. I was thinking when I looked at it in the bottle that the glitter would be sparse but it wasn't at all. You could probably do one more coat and your whole nail would be glitter-riffic! A top coat is definitely needed to smooth everything out and make it really shine. It applied very easily - the formula is very nice on this one.

The next one I swatched was this gorgeous neon pink jelly with holographic glitter throughout. This one is called Barbie Girl and it lives up to its name! It is so perfectly pink and glitzy. The formula for this polish is also very nice - swatch shown here is 3 thin coats, no top coat. Just a perfect, girly shade perfect for the summer.

Of course, I saved my favorite two for last. This one is called Penni and its inspired by the character of the same name in The Big Bang Theory. This polish is a coppery mauve color that inside looks metallic and boy was I surprised when I went outside and it had a subtle linear holographic finish to it! This one is perfect for an time of the year but I am especially pleased to have it now because I will get a lot of mileage out of it for the fall/winter. I love a good holo that can be worn all year long! The formula on this one is a dream - two thin coats, no top coat. It went on like butter. I seriously cannot say enough good things about this polish. It is probably my favorite of the bunch!

Last, but certainly not least is called Mystery 4. When I ordered from Jodi, I was having a hard time deciding on my final polish and told her to make it a surprise. This one is like Christmas came early for me. I loved putting this one on and didn't want to take it off. You need some holo in your holo? This is the polish for you. This nudey-pink polish features a linear holographic finish with scattered holo glitter in it. I mean what could even be better than that? The formula on this one is also a dream - two thin coats, no top coat. I really could go on and on about how much I love this one!

Okay so that is it for the swatch and review. If you are interested in purchasing these lacquers, you can do so by visiting Nailpolishindiebrand.com. You can also follow Jodi's Instagram and let her know I sent you over! She is a doll! 

Don't forget to check out my Instagram for future swatches and other manis as well!
Thank you for reading and happy polishing!

**Again, I was sent these products free of charge in exchange for my honest and unbiased feedback. You can read more in my Disclosure Policy.**

Disclosure Policy

This policy is valid from 23 September 2014

 This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me. For questions about this blog, please contact  Karen Harris .

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Thursday, September 18, 2014

French mani with a twist!

Today on the blog I've got French tips with a twist! I freehanded the white tip with Dermelect Opulence and stamped the whole nail with Sinful Colors Tempest using Cici&Sisi plate #6. I top coated with Inm Northern Lights. 

If my nails weren't so stained, I would love this dainty, feminine look. What do you think of this look? 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Watermarble and glitter!

Today on the blog I have a super girly mani. I decided to plan an entire mani around the glitter on my middle and thumb. 

Colors used to achieve this look are Dermelect Opulence,Sinful Colors Thimbleberry, Color Club Taurus, and Pahlish Glittoris. The studs are also from Color Club. 

What do you think of this look?  

Rainbow stamping - mani swap!

A couple of days ago I did a mani swap with the talented @megatuce on Instagram. I saw her rainbow stamping and fell in love! This technique was actually easier than I thought it was going to be. 

Colors used to achieve this look are Dermelect Opulence, Funky Fingers Sand And Stilettos and Alex's Lemonade, Fresh Paint Burning Flame, Sally Hansen Pacific Blue, and Sinful Colors Tempest. I topped the rainbow nails with Northern Lights. 

What do you think of this look? 

Quatrefoil nails!

Today on the blog, I have another entry for #nailartsep - quatrefoil. This look was inspired by the amazing Christabellnails. This technique is harder than it looks! I'm still not happy with how it came out but I will have to try again. 

Colors used to achieve this look are Zoya Envy, Orly Voyeuristic Adventure, and OPI Wonderous Star. 

What do you think of this look? 

Fall gradient mani

I was inspired by a friend on Instagram (check out @ineedamani) by her stamping over a holo gradient. I used Literary Lacquers More Like Fire Than Light, Butter London Trustafarian, Butter London Bit Faker and stamped with Sinful Colors Black On Black. I loved this mani!

What do you think of this look? 

Jewel toned mani!

Come on fall! Where is the cooler weather? It's still in the high 80's with 75% humidity here in Georgia. 

Nevertheless, fall colors are my favorite and it's acceptable to start using them so I did the jewel toned mani with Ginger+Liz Bitch Slap and Stress Management, Dermelect Opulence and topped it all with INM Northern Lights top coat. It was my first time using this top coat and I'm hooked! 

What do you think of this look? 

Back to school nails!

Another mani for #nailartsep - school things! I was inspired by several uncredited pictures on Pinterest to create this mani. 

The colors used to achieve this look are Orly Rockets Red Glare, Sinful Colors Black on Black and Snow Me White, Fresh Paint Burning Flame, Broadway Nails Chocoholic, and Zoya Chita. 

What do you think of this look? 

Chevron glitter placement!

Still chugging along for #nailartsep! I'm so determined to make it to the end so I can make a pretty little collage. πŸ˜‚ 

To achieve this look I used KB Shimmer Whole Lava Lovin', OPI 4 In The Morning, and China Glaze Create a Spark for the glitter placement on the middle and ring finger. The sun wasn't my friend that day so you can't see the holo on any of it but it was gorgeous! And glitter placement is beautiful but so time consuming. I don't think I'll be doing it again for awhile! 

What do you think of this look?  

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

My first indies!

I am the proud owner of a whole slew of indie polishes now, thanks to a lovely fellow polish addict who was selling a huge lot on Facebook. As soon as I got them I had to try them out! 

To achieve this look I used ILNP Molly and Ellagee Countdown to 2014. The black I used is Sinful Colors Black on Black. 

I seriously can't even describe how much I loved this mani. As for indies...I'm hooked. 

What do you think of this look? 

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Come on fall!

Yesterday's mani was an ode to fall. It's only a couple of weeks until the start of fall but it's so HOT! Fall is my favorite season so I did some fall nails to try to urge the season change along. πŸ˜ƒ the colors I used to achieve this look are Butter London Trustafarian, Butter London Sunbaker, and Zoya Tomoko. 

What do you think of this look? 

Mani swap nails - distressed fish scales!

A few days ago, I did a mani swap with my friend @theirishbeauty on Instagram. When I saw her distressed mani with a fish scale accent, I fell in love. Here is my recreation. The colors I used to achieve this look are OPI Moon Over Mumbai, LA Colors Atomic, Sinful Colors Why Not, Sinful Colors Black On Black, and Sinful Colors Nail Junkie. I hand painted the fish scales with a small detail brush. 

What do you think of this look? 

Purple dotticure

Last night I did my moms nails inspired by a picture by @itsallaboutpolish that she found on Pinterest. The colors I used to achieve this look are Maybelline Deep In Violet, China Glaze Grape Juice, NYC Lexington Lilac, and Orly Silver Pixel. 

What do you think of this look? 

Pink Gradient Nails

Today on the blog is one of my favorite manis ever! To achieve this look I used Pure Ice Twinkle, NYC Pink Champagne, and Zoya Tomoko. Then I added studs from Five below on my pinkie and thumb. Rose Gold leaf midi ring is from Rue 21. 

What do you think of this look? 

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Cat nails!

Today on the blog I have my submission for Day 4 of #nailartsep on Instagram - Cat nails! Inspired by a tutorial by @cutenailbar. Colors used to achieve this look were Orly Star Spangled, OPI Solitaire, Sinful Colors Black On Black and Snow Me White. 

I love how these turned out! What do you think of this look? 

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Simple nails!

Today on the blog I have my submission for the first day of #nailartsep by Californails on Instagram. The prompt was "simple" so I laid down a base color of Orly Wild Wisteria and dotted Sinful Colors Tempest over all except the ring finger which is Zoya London. I'm still loving matte nails for the fall, so I left London without a topcoat and matted the rest of the nails. I'm really loving this one, except the Orly comes across navy in my pictures but it's actually a super deep purple. 

What do you think of this look? Are you doing the #nailartsep challenge?  

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Nude gradient nails!

Today's look was inspired by @mrswhite8907 and features a nude to white gradient and some simple stamping on the accent nail. Colors used to achieve this look were FingerPaints Whatta Dish, Sinful Colors Snow Me White, and the gradient nails are topped with China Glaze Fairy Dust. I love how elegant this turned out. 

What do you think of this look? 

Drag Art!

Yesterday's mani was inspired by ohmygoshpolish. The technique used was dragging with a toothpick or simply, drag art. Colors used to achieve this look were CiatΓ¨ London Candy Floss, Zoya Lux, Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear White On, and Sallh Hansen Complete Manicure Coat Of Arms. This look wasn't as easy as I thought it was going to be. There's a real learning curve for this particular nail art. 

What do you think of this look? 

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Ninjas in love!

Today's look features two very lovey dovey ninjas. My husband always asks me to do a ninja mani and I've just never gotten around to it. Today is the day! 

To achieve this look I used Pop Beauty Radiant Ruby, Zoya Cosmo, and Sinful Colors Black On Black. I topped with Out the Door by INM Nails. The ninjas are from Cici&Sisi plate #4. 

If you're looking to try a new polish brand or you want a rich ruby color like this, Pop Beauty Radiant Ruby definitely delivers. I am excited to try more from them! 

What do you think of this look? 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Navy matte dotticure - first blog post!

My first blog post features this matted navy dotticure. I am recently obsessed with mattifying all the nails! The colors I used to achieve this look are Zoya Sailor (index and middle and as the dots on the accent nail), OPI Moon Over Mumbai (ring), and OPI Liquid Sand Solitaire (pinkie). I topped with NYC Matte Me Crazy. 

With fall fast approaching, I plan to use a matte top coat a lot! What do you think of this look?