Monday, 27 February 2012

So Close...And Yet So Far

I'm trying to work through a few of my untrieds at the minute.  Bless, her, Michelle of Things I Love At the Moment was saying she has 13 untried polishes she's trying to get through.  To which all I could say was: I wish!!!  I've been spending far too much and swatching far too little. 

Well, having tempted my mother with a polish from my Models Own Beetlejuice collection, I thought I'd use one of the others, so I went for Aqua Violet.  If you haven't tried it this is a gorgeous greeny blue/purple duochrome, inspired by (obviously) beetles. 

I think my problems with this mani started when I put polish on over a basecoat that had been dry for a few hours.  I'm currently doing an experiment with 2 different basecoats, one on each hand, to see which one strengthens my nails the best, so I know which one to buy more of (more on this in a separate post some time).  I'd had a busy day so I'd only had chance to apply the basecoats earlier in the day.  So I'm guessing this is the reason why I had bubbling as the polish dried. Not a good look.

Here you can just see the flakies
So I decided to cover up the bubbling with a flaky.  Me in my genius decided to use a flaky (yum, Cadburys Flakes...) that matched the colour of the polish, so I chose Finger Paints Motley.  Bad idea.  Never choose a flaky that is the same colour as your polish!!!  Because Motley also has a duochrome effect of greeny blue and purple, you just can't see it on top of the Models Own Aqua Violet.  It just disappears!!!  All it does it make it look like it rained on your mani.  Which would be good if this is what you wanted!  But it wasn't.  Mistake #2!

My third mistake came when I decided to apply Seche Vite when the colour was nearly dry.  Major shrinkage!!!  From asking around I think that Seche Vite is really bad for shrinkage if the undercoats are pretty dry.  Which is a shame as I love my Seche Vite.  However, to confirm this in a true scientific way, at some point I will do a controlled experiment to confirm this.

Anyway, by last night I was fed up with the tip wear look but couldn't be bothered to take it off and do another mani, so I decided to try to cover it up.  So I got out another untried - China Glaze Some Like it Haute.  If you haven't seen this it is a gorgeous gorgeous glitter top coat - it has tiny aqua bar glitter mixed in with small purple glitter - a perfect match to the Aqua Violet.  This is such a pretty glitter that if you love glitters you absolutely have to have it.  

The tiny bar glitter

On my accent nail I decided to have a go at stamping again, and actually this turned out pretty well.  I think I'll be doing more stamping.  Once I'd cleaned off all the polish my darling daughter had got all over the scraper, the plates and the stamper.
My stamping - and here you can see the raindrop effect

But again I made the fatal (well, in nail polish speak) mistake of putting another coat of Seche Vite over the top (I'd not had the convos about shrinkage at this point!).  Just look at the shrinkage in the photos - it's soooo bad.


With a little more care and a few tweaks, this could have been an amazing mani.  But sadly it was mostly a fail - *goes off and weeps into her acetone*.  But I have learnt a few things with this mani which means hopefully I'll improve and have some better pictures to show you another time.

Sunday, 26 February 2012

First Attempt at Nail Art - Ladybugs!!!

I've always admired the nail art that my various fellow bloggers produce but I've always relied on the different nail effect polishes to produce the bling on my nails.  So I decided to give it a shot.

I've got a thing for ladybugs at the minute so it seemed appropriate that my first attempt at nail art should be ladybugs.

I haven't had chance to do a proper mani so I did a practise on a nail wheel - what do you think?  It's also my first attempt at using dotting tools.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Zoya Neeka vs L'Oreal Mysterious Icon

Whilst Fantasy Fire hunting the other day I found what I think is a new Boots store, which stocked a range of various products I'd not seen in other stores, including a new range of polishes by L'Oreal.  When I spotted this bottle I knew I had to get it, and initially I thought it was a dupe for Zoya Neeka.

L'Oreal Mysterious Icon

When I compared the 2 together tho it became obvious that while Neeka is a purple with gold flecks, Mysterious Icon is more of a gold/purple shimmering duochrome.

On the comparison posts below my index and ring finger are Zoya Neeka and my middle and pinky are L'Oreal Mysterious Icon.

The 2 bottles side by side

Neeka, Mysterious Icon, Neeka, Mysterious Icon (flash)
Natural Light

Although they aren't dupes they do complement each other beautifully.  So of course I had to mix them up in a scotch tape nail art.  Enjoy!!!

Saturday, 18 February 2012

First Attempt at Scotch Tape

I bought my first matte polish from Nails Inc, Hanbury Street but I found the terracotta colour not really me so tried to tart it up a little by trying my first scotch tape mani.  

I actually found it a little harder than I thought it would be as I couldn't get the tape to stick down at my cuticles, but found that by lining the edge of the tape with my cuticles I could get a straight line.  My thumb's polish must have had an extra layer because the polish peeled off with the tape - oops!  But I was really happy with how the lines turned out, even if I wasn't that fussed on the colours!  The top coat was Leighton Denny Sex Kitten.

By the way, matte polishes really don't last!

Monday, 13 February 2012

Nail Mail

I had 3 lots of nail mail today!!!  Yay me :)

Firstly was some frankens I ordered from etsy seller Glitrix.  How cute are the bottles??!!

From L-R Oceanic, Going Gaga and Mystique
They are only little bottles but she sells them for $6 each, but she is offering free shipping - always a bonus when buying polishes internationally!!

Next up is a purchase I made using some vouchers I got using my Tesco Clubcard points, and a polish I received from my secret valentine on Beauty Box Swaps FB page.  All OPIs!  The first polish was from my SV and the other 3 were my buys.

From L-R Meet & Jingle, Ate Berries in the Canaries, Fly and Pepes Purple Passion
Swatches to follow :)

Under the Sea

In the market the other day I picked up another bottle of the Wet n Wild dupe ckCalvinKlein, this time in Navy Sparkle.  I was intrigued because although it was called 'navy', in the bottle it looked green!

I swatched it on a nail wheel - one coat was very definitely blue, the second coat was blue with a hint of green and the third coat was definitely bluey green, the colour of the sea.  I decided to layer a coat of Finger Paints Motley over the top and was instantly in love with the 'marine' mani it created - gorgeous gorgeous blues and greens.  I knew I had to do it in a full mani as soon as possible.

Unfortunately I messed up with the clean up and it bugged me so I took it off that night.  But I'll try it again some time.

Blog Sale!!!

I've got a blog sale open here!!!!

Please come visit!

Sunday, 5 February 2012

OPI Save Me - Amazing Holo Bar Glitter (pic heavy!)

My mum was at my house on Saturday when a parcel arrived.  'More nail polish!' she said.  'No', I said.  'I'm not expecting anything'.  How could I have forgotten that I'd ordered one of my lemmings, OPI Save Me?  It looks so pretty in the bottle but I wasn't prepared for the gorgeousness on the nail.  As soon as it arrived I had to swatch it on my pinky, and then did a full mani as soon as I could.

In the bottle the bar glitter looked blue but applied to the nail it was a gorgeous fiery holo.  I was in the mood for green so I applied 2 coats of Pure Ice Calyspo.  I loved how in one light just the silver glitter reflected and in another light the bar glitter reflected the colours of the rainbow.  I just hope my pictures do it justice.  Sorry there's so many pics but I just had to put them all in!

In daylight - no flash - just look at that colour!

Getting to know you...

Having just started this little corner of the polish blogging world I would love to know more about my fellow bloggers, and hopefully get to know new bloggers along the way.  So I've started this meme to hopefully achieve that aim.

What got you into nail polish?
I've always loved nail polish and used to be teased about my collection.  I only had 20 or so!  Then I got into twitter, twitter got me into comping, comping introduced me to blogging and blog comps, I won a bottle of OPI Teenage Dream and I was hooked and now have loads of polish blogs in my reading list.
Your age/age range?
I'm 32 :(
How many polishes?
I currently have around 250 (I think)
Favourite brand?
OPI always, but I'm loving some of the home made brands like NerdLacquer.
Favourite polish?
This is a really hard question as the answer changes daily.  But my first OPI, Teenage Dream, will always be special.
Mani no-no?
Neon colours on short, stubby, half chewed nails.
Favourite effect?
Well that's in the title - GLITTER!!!  Layered of course.
Crackles - yay or nay?
At first I loved them but they are wearing thin and then I discovered chunky glitter :)
Do you franken?
Not yet but I hope to.
Favourite polish blog (other than your own!)?
I owe so much to Trace at The Trace Face Philes.  I've learnt amazing techniques from her blog, discovered some gorgeous polishes, and she's introduced me to some amazing polish people.  Unfortunately this has affected my bank balance rather badly!!!
Guilty secret?
I peel my nail polish off instead of using remover *hand slap*!
Real, acrylics or falsies?
Real - I've never tried acrylics and falsies always fly off for me!
I would love a bottle of GOSH Holographic.
What would you be doing if you weren't doing your nails?
Either chasing my kids or doing one of my other numerous hobbies, such as making jewellery.
Top polish tip?
Unless you want to end up with a toe tag always apply a base coat even to your tootsies, especially when applying blue nail polish!!
Favourite mani?
This was my first introduction to flakies (before I knew what flakies were!) and I couldn't take my eyes off it - it reminded me of opals.  It was a Rimmel Black with NYX Purple Avenue.

Who are you tagging?
I'm tagging:
Sheila at The Pointless Cafe
Sharon at Polish Infatuated
Carly at Lacquered Lover

Please take part and then add your post to the linky below so we can all get to know each other better.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Mile High Bubble Wrap

I've been exchanging in a lot of polish swaps lately and I often reuse the bubble wrap I receive my swaps in to post off other polishes.  Every time I do I have to giggle a little bit at the thought of bubble wrap passing too and fro across the Atlantic.  It's racking up Air Miles!!

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

OPI Funky Dunky & Pure Ice Oh Baby

After Sheila at Pointless Cafe sent me a massive nail mail haul, I had to try some of them straight away and as there were so many polishes I couldn't possibly apply just one polish, so had to layer a few!

For this manicure I used OPI Funky Dunky, a lovely grape jelly, and then layered a coat of Pure Ice Oh Baby over the top, followed by a coat of Seche Vite.  I used a coat of Sinful Colors Green Ocean as an accent nail on my ring finger.  I struggled to capture the gorgeous greeny blue shimmer that Oh Baby gave, but it exactly matched the Green Ocean flakies.  Enjoy.

Recent Nail Hauls

I've had some great nail mail lately, along with some fabulous hauls, which I thought I'd share with you!  You ready for some nail porn?!

The first is a mega package I received from Sheila at Pointless Cafe - I couldn't believe how kind she had been!

This is the polish unwrapped - it was so sweet of her to put labels on some of the polishes so that I knew what was what as I'm unfamiliar with some of these brands.

I went shopping!  Ooops.  Found all these at my local market.

Yum - Model's Own Beetlejuice!!!  They weren't all for me tho, some are for one of my US polish friends :)