Oct 30, 2012

Essence Mrs. & Mr. Glitter

Today I'm showing you a swatch of a glitter I was super excited about when I first heard of it, Essence Mrs.& Mr. Glitter. We have Black, Blue and Green big hex glitters suspended in a clear base. I decided to layer it over NYC Yellow Cab, which didn't thrill me at all in the end.

I'm not quite sure what I was expecting, but it didn't work :D The glitter is kind of sparse in this polish and after one coat applied with the dabbing method, my nails got gloopy and thick. I had hoped for discoball-like glitter but didn't even want to apply another coat because of how gloopy the base was. 

I think I might try layering it over a blue or green metallic polish next time, just to add a little sparkle, instead of trying to cover a cream shade. 
I took this of right after I took the pictures, because I couldn't live with it :D

In other news, the puppy is still a giant time suck and I'm not even going to make any promises about posting regularly anymore. Last week, we found out he had an ear infection for a long time and no one at the shelter told us. The vet said he'd need to get surgery on both ears, but we gave him ear drops first and now it looks like it's clearing up so well he might not have to get cut open after all! 

Thank you for stopping by and I hope to see you soon!

Oct 22, 2012

Purple Glitter Gradient

Hi everyone! I'm so sorry I fell off the face of the earth there for a little while. If you follow me on twitter, you might have seen that there's been a new addition to my family. I have a puppy to take care of now! Although he's generally well behaved, I still have to be on top of him constantly, and it took a while to get to know each other and find the right schedule for him. I do hope I'll have more time to blog from now on!

What I'm showing you today is something I've been thinking about since the 31 Day Challenge. I learned so much about nail art and also about my stash - especially that purple is underrepresented in it. Starting small, I went with a darkened lavender today, Catrice Lucky in Lilac. 

It took three thin coats to be opaque and was a little streaky, but I knew I was going to put glitter on top anyway. For wearing it on it's own, I probably have to be more careful with the application. The glitter is Essence It's Purplicious, a topper I've had in my stash for ages and rarely used. It has purple and magenta square glitter and silver microglitter. 

I hope you enjoyed this simple glitter gradient and thanks for stopping by!

Oct 14, 2012

Glorious Aquadelic

Today I'm showing you a mani that I loved to wear so much, I briefly contemplated just keeping it on for the whole week :D
This match made in nail polish heaven is China Glaze Aquadelic and two fingers topped with Essence Glorious Aquarious. I did the pick-up and put-back dance with both of these polishes for weeks. With Glorious Aquarious, there was always a glitter topper that I wanted more. In the case of Aquadelic, well, I ordered For Audrey months ago from my local beauty supply, and this little one just kept taunting me "We're really similar! I'm just not as dusty! Take me home!". So I did, finally. I'm also planning to just order For Audrey online as soon as I find a shop that has a decent shipping rate. 

I'm so glad I gave in to these two in the end. Aquadelic is a bit runny, but otherwise the formula is great and Glorious Aquarious is just packed with the most beautiful multi-size turquoise and clear to orange shifting glitter. It's also one of the easier glitter toppers to apply, with the pieces laying flat and not clumping up at one place.

The above two pictures were taken under artificial light, making the colors a little less vibrant. I love this mani in any condition. The colors and glitter are just so cheerful, I can basically hear "Under the Sea" right now :) 

I hope you like this mani as much as I did, thank you for stopping by!

Oct 11, 2012

Pink and Brown Skittle mani

I'm showing you some nail art again today, but I got some exciting news this week that I'd like to share. I work at a beauty store and am surrounded by amazing makeup every day, but our nail department is lacking a little. My boss noticed my manis so he decided that next week, we're gonna have a nail art event! I'm gonna have a little station to show people how to do some simple designs, and we're offering full manis, too.
I really love doing makeup on people and I think showing them some nail art tricks is going to be really fun aswell.

Now on to my mani!

I did this a while ago, but came across the pictures recently and decided to share them here. For the base color, I used Rare Nails Strawberry Milkshakes and then painted on the patterns in an unnamed H&M color. For the cupcake, I sponged the top with Sally Hansen White On, then gave it some glitter with Essence Circus Confetti and a little dot of Essie Cute as a Button. 

Rare Nails Strawberry Milkshake was a complete nightmare to work with. I think I had four coats on here, and it was still streaky in some spots. It's really sheer, but doesn't level itself at all, so even doing a glitter sandwich with it would be difficult. I have another polish by this brand that is the same kind of pastel-ish color and that one wasn't better either. I think I might try a dark color to see if the formula on those is better, since the bottles are only 2€, on the other hand I could get a nice Essence polish for that money.

I had a fail finger in this mani. I tried to do some argyle on the thumb, but needless to say, that didn't turn out right. It took much longer than I anticipated, and also my technique of dipping my brush in acetone to do the lines within the brown squares didn't work. Next time, I'll paint them on in white first and then go over the white with whatever polish I'll be using as a base. 

I did enjoy doing this mani, my middle finger was my favorite :) Those swirls will be done again in red and white for Christmas! I also think that pink and brown are a match made in heaven, do you agree? It always makes me think of some sort of chocolate and strawberry dessert!

Oct 9, 2012

Essence I'm so very - swatch

I was so excited last week when I saw that the new Essence polishes arrived over here! I got only two colors at first, because I didn't know how they would turn out. Now that I've tried one, I think I'll have to go back and get all of them! Today I'm showing you Essence I'm so very.

I'm so very is a rusty dark orange color, and originally I only picked this one because I thought it would be a nice color for fall. I'm not usually so keen on any shade of orange, but I'm warming up to them very quickly. This shade really helps with that :D  I was so surprised by how much I loved it when I put it on. It came out a little darker than I had anticipated, and ended up looking more like a red with a rusty touch to it on me. I was always a very blue-based red kind of girl, so this just blew my mind! 

Apart from the great color, the formula is fantastic! It's smooth an extremely self leveling, not runny at all without being thick and the opacity is amazing. I used two coats here to eliminate any traces of visible nail line, but if that doesn't bother you or you have shorter nails, you can definitely get away with only one coat! I can't say anything about the drying time, because I always use fast rying top coat (inm Out the Door in this case).

I really like the new bottle design, and don't mind paying a couple of cents more for 8ml of product vs. 5ml in the old bottle. The new, wider brush also seems a little stiffer than what I'm used to, but it's nothing that really takes away from the great polish. Another nice thing about the bottle is that you feel it "click" once you closed it completely. I find additions like that really thought- and helpful. The only worry I have is how much product I'll be able to get out of it once I run low. The neck is pretty long, so I imagine a lot of polish can get lost that way. 

I took a couple more pics because I love this color so much :)

What do you think about the new Essence range? I only picke up cremes this time, so I'll probably get something with glitter or shimmer in it soon. Is there any polish you think I absolutely need to have? Thanks for stopping by!

Oct 7, 2012

Sephora Divine Purple Fall Manicure

Today I have a fall-ish mani for you! I got my first Sephora nail polish last week, and was eager to try it out. 

Here you see two coats of Sephora Divine Purple stamped with the owl images of BM-309 in Jordana Black Charm, then mattified with Essie Matte about You.

Divine Purple went on like a dream in two easy coats, leveling itself beautifully without any pooling or streaking. It's not really purple, though, more like a dark magenta color. 

I think the owl stamp is super cute, but next time I'll pick some more contrasting colors to make them show up better. 
Some of my nails are also getting a bit long for the full nail images, besides being a bit impractical for every day. I dont know whether I want to nubbinize them again. The whole point of growing them out was to see how long they'd get before peeling or breaking, but they're still going strong! 

I really have to figure out at least a semi-regular posting schedule. Last week was terribly crazy, but I got a feeling the next ones are only going to be worse in that regard. I really missed sitting down to blog every night, but I did miss my bed more :D I'm glad I at least managed to snap a couple of pictures of the manis I did, so I might pre-blog a couple of posts on my day off and publish them throughout the week.
I'm really thankful for every single view I get, even on the days I don't post :) 

Oct 4, 2012

My first braided mani!

I've seen so many amazing braided manis around lately, I finally decided it was time for me to tackle this design! I expected it to be complicated, but it's really as easy as it looks - the hardest part for me was trying to keep the "overlapping"area centred (failed on that one). Not unlike a fishtail braid, it also took quite a while to do. I knew I wanted to do thinner stripes, just to see what it would look like, but I had no idea that it would take me much longer than in the video tutorials.  

Oct 3, 2012

Catrice Steel my Soul - swatch and finish comparison

I'm so happy to report that the some of the new fall colors by Catrice and the new Essence polishes finally arrived in my corner of the world! I never realized how lucky I was in Germany with unlimited and quick access to great drugstore polishes. 
One of the things I was most excited about is a new finish by Catrice - Brushed Metal Effect. I decided to give Steel my Soul a try.

Catrice Steel my Soul is a taupe-y lavender with gold microglitter in it. The Brushed Metal Effect finish is not glossy but not really matte either - it looks and feels a bit rough, like teflon maybe? 
I really wanted to see how this works and ended up rather disappointed. The formula on this polish is bad. I had less problems when first applying A Crewed Interest by Essie, if that gives you an indication. 
It's thick and gloopy and runny at the same time. It's also patchy, but any more than two coats would've made my nails look puffy. It takes longer to dry than a matte (as you can see by the bumps and scratches above) and because I didn't topcoat this mani, I had tipwear within a couple of hours (again, see above). I don't find the color flattering on me either, but that's personal preference.

I read before that some people like these polishes more in their glossy form, so I tried saving it by applying inm Out the Door top coat. While I was at it, I also put Essie Matte about You on one of my fingers.

From left to right, you see the original polish, then mattified an glossy. Somehow the roughness of the original finish brings out the glitter more, while it almost disappears in the mattified version. You can also notice the texture next to the matte nail.. The glossy one is my favorite, though. The color is still not exactly flattering on me, but it goes more towards the wear-it-anyway-direction. 

All in all, I don't think I'll be getting much use out of this polish, but I never know. I gave away a lot of bottles when I moved to Spain last year, and am seriously kicking myself now for not keeping some of them.  The formula definitely leaves something to be desired, though.

What finish do you like most with this polish? 
I hope this little review and comparison was interesting/helpful to some of you, thanks for stopping by!

Oct 1, 2012

31 Day Challenge, Day 31: Re-create your favorite Challenge!

The very last day of this challenge! I had the hardest time deciding on a mani to re-create for today, I looked through all the pictures in the interlinks for hours. I also woke up feeling like death warmed over, but that's another story.  In the end, I had to pick something to accomodate my limited skills and stash. Here you see my re-creation of the stripes mani by Polished Criminails

The only polish that made it from the inspiration over to this mani is the base, Essie A Crewed Interest. The stripes were originally done in other colors of the same collection, but I just used whatever came closest in my stash. You see P2 Drama and Scandal, Essie Nice is Nice and Catrice Sold out Forever (1st version). 

I love how colorful this mani is and got a lot of compliments on it today (doesn't happen often!). 

I'm so happy to have taken part in this challenge, it was a great learning experience for a newbie like me. I'm so overwhelmed with how many people came to see my manis every day, and especially the comments! I hope some of you stick around, and that I can still come up with manis on my own :D 

Thank you very much for sticking through this challenge with me!