Sep 30, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 30: Inspired by a Tutorial

We've reached the 30th day of the challenge, inspired by a tutorial. Last week I was at my local dollar store and spotted a little bag of glequins. I immediately thought of the fabulous glequin manicure by The Nailsaurus. She posted a great tutorial a couple of weeks ago so this is my take on the glequin mani!

Sep 29, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 29: Inspired by the Supernatural

Hello everyone! I'm cutting it really close today, but it's still before midnight here, so I'll make it quick! For day 29 of the challenge, I was supposed to be inspired by the supernatural. What you see are my Frankenstein nails.

For the base, I saran sponged Sally Hansen White On and Catrice Sold out Forever (1st version) on two coats of NYC Sidewalkers. Then I took out a a thin brush and Jordana Black Charm  to draw on the stitches.

I actually really liked how this came out, especially the saran sponging effect. When I told people how I did this mani, they were pretty shocked and it was funny so see them trying to get into their head that saran wrap is not only for the kitchen :D 

I hope you liked these and I'll see you tomorrow for the second to last day of the challenge! 

Sep 28, 2012

31 Day Nail Challenge, Day 28: Inspired by a Flag

I'm so excited to share this mani with you today! For the 28th day of the challenge, I was inspired by the flag of the Philippines.

The Philippines are an archipelago of more than 7000 islands, located in the western Pacific Ocean. They are also where my mom was born and most of my family lives. My mom is my hero and inspires me every day, and my family there is very dear to me even though I haven't been able to see them for four years. I'm really happy I get to do a mani like this in the challenge, this one really comes from my heart!

The Flag of the Philippines is a red and a blue stripe, with a white triangle on the left side. In the triangle, there is a sun with 8 rays and a star in every corner. For this mani, I painted my middle finger with Sally Hansen White On and the others with a red franken I made. As soon as the red dried, I taped half of the nails off and painted the other with Essie Mesmerized. 
I stamped on the stars from the Konad m3 plate with Orly Glitz, and freehanded the sun with the same polish.

I really love how these came out, and my mom was excited, too! At first I wasn't sure because the red is a jelly and the blue is a creme, but I think it looks fine. And of course the sun is not perfectly centred, but I don't think that was very apparent in real life. 
I guess the next step is to make a german flag because that's where I was born, a spanish and american flag for my fiance and a norwegian flag for my moms boyfriend! I'm so happy to have such a multicultural environment, I love learning about different countries/cultures and traveling. 

Thank you so much for reading, especially today! I hope you liked this mani!

Sep 26, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 27: Inspired by Artwork

We're supposed to do something inspired by artwork today, but I have to admit, I cheated a little. I've wanted to do a splatter mani forever, so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity :) Thank god for Jackson Pollock!

I started with a base of Sally Hansen White On, the polishes I used for the splatters are Essie Turquoise & Caicos and Cute as a Button, Rare Strawberry Milkshake, Catrice Sold out Forever (1st version) and NYC Sidewalkers. 
For this mani, I dipped a straw into a blob of polish and then blew it on my nail. I'm not really happy with the colors I chose, I think it's just too busy. They never dried, either, so I had to take them off after an hour so I could go to work. And even though I taped my nails off before starting, clean up was still a mess. 
For the next time, I'll make my own polish decals by splattering on a freezer bag and then sticking them on my nail. I already started experimenting :D

I'm excited to see what everyone else came up with for today! I love looking at artwork, but I have to admit I don't really know much about it. I worked at a gallery for a bit, and it was fascinating, but I never really got into it more. 

I hope you enjoyed this mani, and thanks for stopping by!

31 Day Challenge, Day 26: Inspired by a Pattern

We've reached day 26! Only a couple of days more and then the challenge is over! Unbelievable!

Today we're doing patterns, so I picked my favorite pattern of the Bundle Moster stamping plate set, paisley. I've also been seeing a lot of super cute saran wrap manis, so this is my first try!

I started with two layers of China Glaze Papaya Punch and the "sponged" P2 Drama on with the saran wrap. As soon as that dried, I stamped the pattern from BM-315 with Yes Love #876 (my favorite stamping polish right now!). One coat of Essence Better than Gel Nails top coat, and it's what you see up there.

I'm really happy with this mani, I love how bright it looks. The background is basically on fire! I hope you like it, too and thanks for stopping by :)

Sep 25, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 25: Inspired by Fashion


I have so many firsts for you today! Up there, you see my first Butter London polish, which is also the first polish ever I ordered online and my first piece of Royal Nail Mail. I have to tell you, I  really regret my purchase.. because this polish is so perfect, all I want to do now is order all the Butter London polishes!
For fashion day, I'm showing you All Hail the Queen, stamped with different gold tones. The dress that inspired me is of course a McQueen dress that I've had in my inspiration folder since it came out for spring 2012. If I ever had a fortune to spend on a dress, I would hunt this piece down and wear it day and night, all day every day, no f*cks given. You can see it here

Sep 24, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 24: Inspired by a Book

Wow, we've reached day 24 already! Time is flying by and I'm starting to wonder if I'm even able to come up with my own manis again after this challenge is over! I guess I'll worry about that in 5 days, and for now, show you my "inspired by a book" nails.

I'm a bit late to the Game of Thrones party. I never even heard about it before the series, and even after I watched the first season back to back (twice), it took some time for me to get the first book and read it. The book series is called "A Song of Ice and Fire", with the first installment being "A Game of Thrones". 

Sep 23, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 23: Inspired by a Movie

Day 23 of the challenge, today the theme is "Inspired by a Movie". I was waffling back and forth forever about what movie I wanted to do.. there were so many on my list. The one that won was the one I wanted to watch the most after I viewed all the trailers: Empire Records!

The movie came out 1995 and starred, among others, Liv Tyler and Renee Zellweger. It's about an eventfull day at a record store (I suck at summaries that don't give away too much). If you like mid-90s teen movies, you should watch this asap :)

Here's a close up for you. I used Essie Mesmerized as a base and then painted on the swirls first in white and then in China Glaze Sun-Kissed, a neon yellow. I painted a record on my middle finger and dotted a couple of swirls with Yes Love 876.

On the thumb and pinky, I also first painted the letters in white and then yellow. The E and R stand of course for Empire Records, in neon yellow, as is the neon sign on top of the store. The record, because it's a record store (duh), and the metallic dots for the coins that A.J. glues to the floor (one of my favorite scenes).

Have you watched Empire Records? It's one of those movies that never get old for me. There was a summer I watched it nearly every day :D

Sep 22, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 22: Inspired by a Song

Day 22 of the 31 Day Challenge: Inspired by a Song. I get that this is supposed to be challenging, but the last days we are facing now are really though for me. I thought so long about how I was going to do this. In the end, I just picked a polish I wanted to wear and then came up with a song that "fit" and inspired me. I hope that's ok :)


The song of this mani is by The Police, Roxanne. You might also know it from Moulin Rouge, although that version is a lot less powerful in my opinion. It does feel like it was written for the movie, though. The theme is a popular one, I love this classic song and thought it would be perfect for Ruby Slippers.

Here you see a half moon mani with China Glaze Ruby Slippers and Jordana Black Charm. Ruby Slippers might be my all time favorite red, it's so multidimensional, I could look at it for hours. The formula is perfection aswell. 
I painted two coats of Black Charm, except on the ring finger, where I used Ruby Slippers. At the half moon you can see how light it look next to the other nails, which are layered with two coats over black. For the accent nail, I painted a heart on the black.

Sadly, the weather is still not playing nice and I didn't get the opportunity to take pictures in the sun. That didn't make me put my camera down, though, so here are a couple more pictures for you:

I hope you like how this came out, an I'm super excited to see which songs everyone picked! Thanks for stopping by!

Sep 21, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 21: Inspired by a Color

I'm a little later than usual to the party today, but there was no way I was going to get this post up last night. I'm sorry! I have to learn to manage my time better, I just started a new job and my schedule is all over the place.. but enough of the excuses! Here is my "inspired by a color" mani.

I wasn't sure where to go from this theme, so I just picked a polish I love and and did the first thing that it inspired me to. You see three thin coats of the perfect Essie Turquoise & Caicos here, stamped with BM-319 and Orly Glitz, and then mattified with Essie Matte About You.

When I bought this color, the first thing I thought was that it needs some gold with it. Then I had it and did basically everything except my initial idea :D So I figured now was finally the time to execute. I wiggled the stamp a little bit, to add some movement to the lines, my pointer finger is my favorite this time. I think the delicate gold lines look like they're moving in the wind or water. 

I really love how this mani came out, I think it looks pretty calm while still interesting. What do you think of my wiggly stamps? Thank you for stopping by!

Sep 20, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 20: Water Marble

I'm sorry I have to post this. I really tried, but water marbling is just not my thing. I've tried it so many times, so many polishes, all different kinds of water.. it doesn't work. 
This is actually my best attempt yet, including the bunched up polish around the edges, splotches, bubbles and all.
The polishes I used were Essie Borrowed & Blue, Turquoise & Caicos and Kiko #340. As a base I painted on a coat of Sally Hansen White On. I love how the colors look together, maybe someday someone more skilled will do this properly :D

In other news, a nice reader pointed out that I didn't have google friend connect, so after a bit of fiddling, now you can follow me there! I always thought it would be hard to add to the blog and the only thing that came up when I googled it was that gfc was shut down earlier this year. Classic case of making things more complicate than they are, since I only had to add that little widget :D I hope this is going to make it easier for you to see my manis, and if there are any other suggestions, please let me know! I love to hear from you, it seriously makes my day! 

Thanks for stopping by!

Sep 19, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 19: Galaxy Nails

We've reached Galaxy Nails day! I have a weird mix of pictures for you, because it was cloudy from sunrise to sunset. I took some pictures under the halogen lamps of our vanity, and others with my desk lamp. Above you see how warm the light in out bathroom looks :D 

I really had fun doing these nails, although what you see here is my third attempt. The ones before ended up too sheer and too glittery, but I'm really happy with this one. My favorite is the spiral on my middle finger! 
For this mani, I started with a base of Jordana Black Charm and then put Catrice Return Of The Space Cowboys on top of it. Return Of The Space Cowboys is one of their Million Styles Effect Topcoats, it has a very fine multichrome shimmer that shifts to green, blue or purple.
For the actual galaxies, I sponged first with Maybelline French White and then with Maybelline Fireball on my thumb, middle finger and pinky. For the pointer and ring finger I used a metallic blue polish that's so old, the label has completely worn off. It's likely some random drugstore brand. 
To define the galaxies a little bit more, I sponged Catrice Blue My Mind! along the edges. 
The "stars" are two dollar store polishes, that have very sparse but partially holographic glitter. One has only small silver & holo glitter, the other has small silver & purple glitter along with holo hex glitters.

This mani sparkled like crazy, and I'm a bit disappointed that I didn't get to take pictures in the sun. I loved doing galaxy nails, though, so maybe you'll see a part two when the weather report gets better :) 

I can't believe two thirds of the challenge are almost over! I'm really looking forward to the galaxy nails of the other bloggers, I have a feeling this is one of those challenges where every mani is going to look really different! Thank you for stopping by!

Sep 18, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 18: Half Moons

Hello and welcome to day 18 of the challenge, I have a quick post with a simple mani for you!
The theme of today is half moons. I needed a bit of encouragement in the form of polish today, so I picked two holos and made a half moon and french tip mani. The colors you see here are both from the Kiko Lavish Oriental Collection, #399 Silk Taupe & #400 Steel Grey. 

I used hole reinforcers for the tip and freehanded the half moons at the base. The pictures I took unfortunately don't do the polishes justice, they are a lot more holographic in person. I can't blame it on my top coat either, I used Essence Better Than Gel Nails and it worked just as well as inm Out the Door.  With three thin coats for the base and the topcoat, they survived a day of hair- and dishwashing just fine. As you can see, I can't say the same for my cuticles, and I still haven't found a solution. I think I'm going to have to bite the bullet and order Lush Lemony Flutter Cuticle Butter online, as Burt's Bees is even harder to come by in this corner of the world. 

Keeping up with the challenge is going to be a little harder for me from now on, but I hope I can continue to come up with fun ideas :) I'm also working on a tutorial for the delicate print nails, so keep your eyes open for that if you're interested! 

Sep 17, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 17: Glitter

For glitter day, I pulled out an untried from months ago, Essence Time for Romance. I got it along with Blue Addicted (which I used on day 5). They're both jelly bases with multiple sizes and colors of glitter in them, but Time for Romance is a bit out of my polish comfort zone.
I used three coats for this mani, and it's still a little too sheer for me. Since this is my first mani with it, I wanted to see how it looks without anything under it, but in the future I'd layer this over a rosy color to get a more opaque finish. 
The base is filled with tiny pink and holographic glitter, and larger pink hex glitter. 

On my ring finger you can slightly see the tiny holographic glitter. This is one of those polishes that really come alive in the sun. I stamped it with Kiko #399 Silk Taupe and an image from BM-317. 

More pictures after the cut!

Sep 16, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 16: Tribal

Today I'll show you my first attempt at tribal nails. I had seen this type of design on various blogs for months now, but it never struck me as a "gotta do that!" mani. Now that I tried it, though, I think they're not only pretty to look at, but also fun to do.

More details after the cut!

Sep 15, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 15: Delicate Print

You guys! We've reached day 15! I can't believe I've made it this far :D It's been so inspriring to see all the other bloggers doing the challenge, and to come up with something different each day.

Today the theme is delicate print. I've been waffling back and forth between stamping and freehanding something, in the end I decided to go the more challenging road for me and set the stamps aside.

Sep 14, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 14: Flowers

Today is flower day at the 31 Day Challenge! I love flowers, but only the ones you put in a vase for a week and then throw out. I have zero talent in actually keeping something alive that doesn't remind me to be fed/watered.

This is actually one of the manis I was a little sad to remove after a day. Pink is one of my favorite colors and I really love what happened on my nails here. I used two coats of Essie A Crewed Interest as a base, and then stamped on the flowers of the Konad m26 plate with P2 Scandal, a magenta color. Since the image is only three of the flowers, I stamped each nail twice or three times.  After that, I applied a thin coat of Essence Cotton Candy, a sheer pale pink, for the stamping sandwich effect, like on day 7

But this time, I didn't stop there! 

As soon as that stamping sandwich was done, I added a layer of OPI Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It, but was careful not to catch any of the hearts. I almost think the purple, pink and orange shimmery base of this polish would deserve a bottle of it's own, but it's fairly easy to just spot the hearts when one lands on your brush and wipe it off on the neck of the bottle. 
At this point, I topcoated the whole thing with inm Out the Door to help it dry faster, for the second round of stamping.
Using the same image, I stamped over the nails again, but this time with P2 Passion. I originally wanted to use Essie Cute as a Button for this step, but it was to sheer to stamp. But Passion is a fairly similar color, only without the jelly finish and therefore more opaque. 
To finally finish this mani off, I added one last coat of Essie Matte about You. 

Here's a close up in the shade, so you can see how pretty the (glassfleck?) shimmer of Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It is. 

I really love how this mani came out, so I couldn't stop myself from taking a couple more pictures:

I would love to hear your thoughts!

Sep 13, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 13: Animal Print

We've reached day 13 of the 31 Day Challenge, and I decided to do leopard nails.

For the base color, I used a polish I got a while ago at our equivalent of a dollar store. It's a green jelly that is packed and packed with glitter. Above you see two coats in the sunlight.

Here's a close-up so you can see just how dense the glitter in this polish is. It sparkles like crazy  and feels less gritty than I expected. I see myself taking this out of my polish drawer again around Halloween.

For my leopard spots, I used China Glaze Surfin' for Boys and Midtown Magic. Leopard nails are actually one of the first nail art designs I made and they have a special part in my heart. They're just so easy to do and the color/finish combos are endless. 

I wanted to do something that really pops today, and I think I accomplished that :) Though they're probably not for everyone, I really like all the sparkle and glitter together with the neon.