Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Rescue Beauty Lounge - Glamourpuss

Glamourpuss is one of my favorite reds because the formula is so amazing.  Like most RBL polishes I've tried (with the exception of Cherry Love), the consistency is very thin yet opaque with just one or two coats.  Even when I mess up and apply the polish a little unevenly, I feel like it smooths itself out so there are no streaks.  Originally I hesitated to buy this one because red is so common and I have several similar colors that were less expensive, but ultimately I'm glad I got this because the formula is just that good.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

essence - Gold Rush

Gold Rush is a super shimmery champagne color.  It came out lighter and more sparkly than I expected.  Even though the color isn't too crazy, a lot of shimmer is packed in that little bottle.  I used two coats and then stamped the leopard print pattern from Konad plate m57 using Konad black.

Friday, May 27, 2011

essence - Fairy Dust

Above is Fairy Dust, a light pink frosted shimmer.  The color isn't particularly unique but the formula was great!  Usually I have a hard time applying really light colors since they require multiple coats; I typically end up with translucent spots or streaks which drives me crazy until I can get it just right.  With Fairy Dust, the polish went on very smoothly and it only took two coats.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

essence - Where is the Party?

Out of the five essence polishes I picked up over the weekend, Where is the Party? is probably the one I was most excited about.  In the bottle, it has all the colors of a peacock feather--blue, green, purple, gold....but when I put it on all those colors didn't show up.  

In direct sun it looks like a purple foil:

In low light it was usually a charcoal foil / shimmer:

And at certain angles it was somewhere in between purple and dark grey:

But never any green!  Overall it's not bad, I think I'm just disappointed because I expected something else.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

essence - Just in Case

Above is two coats of Just in Case from my mini-haul of essence nail polishes.  I really liked the color (especially since it was fifty cents on sale).  The consistency was great though it dried with visible brush strokes--I know brush stroke lines bother some people but I don't mind as long as the actual texture isn't lumpy or streaky.  One thing that surprised me about this color is that the finish was really glossy and smooth, even without top coat.  This reminds me of some of the light brown metallics from China Glaze.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

essence colour & go

I've heard great things about essence nail polish and finally picked up a few at Ulta over the weekend:

From left to right, they are: Enchanted Fairy (light pink shimmer), Where Is the Party? (purple/green duochrome), Just in Case (brown shimmer), Gold Rush (champagne shimmer), and What Do U Think? (orange / peach shimmer).  The bottles are pretty small (0.16 fl oz), about one third the size of a typical OPI bottle, but they sell for $0.99 and several of them were on sale for $0.49.  Can't wait to try these out this week!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

China Glaze - Grape Pop

I've been wearing the mani above for almost two weeks now, which is why I haven't posted anything new.  I started with two coats of China Glaze Grape Pop and then stamped the flower pattern from GCOCL K04, which I used last month.  I thought it still looked a little unfinished so after that dried, I used tape to cover the flowers and painted a stripe of light purple using OPI Do You Lilac It? along the left side of each nail.  Loved the way it turned out!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Louvre Me, Louvre Me Not

Louvre Me, Louvre Me Not is an oldie but goodie.  It was part of OPI's France Collection in 2008 and I loved it so much I bought two bottles.  Today I was wearing this dress that I thought it would go perfect with Louvre Me, so after three coats I stamped a pattern in black from Konad plate m64:

Louvre Me has some fuschia shimmer in it, so depending on the lighting and number of coats, it can take on reddish / warm tones (think OPI Pamplona Purple).  I added one more coat than usual to make it a little darker since I was trying to match the color of my dress.  Wearing matching dress + manicure was so much fun!  I wouldn't do it all the time but I definitely got a kick out of it today.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Del Sol - Heartbreaker

Heartbreaker is a bright red glitter that is supposed to turn purple in the sun.  Red glitter polishes always remind me of the winter holidays, and since it's spring I wanted to see if I could use Heartbreaker on top of something else (like I did with Ruby Slippers) to mix up the effect.  The pic below is Heartbreaker (without sun) on top of silver, black, and white:

There wasn't much of a difference between Heartbreaker on its own (first nail) and Heartbreaker over white (last nail).  I had hoped it would look more pink over white, but the red jelly base turned out to be fairly pigmented so this was a bit of a failed experiment.

Now, the same combinations in the sun:

As with Girls Night Out which I posted about in January, the color doesn't transform into a true purple as the label would indicate.  It becomes more of a fuchsia color, slightly darker than the outdoor version of Girls Night Out.  I like the fuchsia but I'm not as thrilled about the red indoor color, so I probably won't use this again for a manicure.  Maybe it would be perfect for a pedi?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Checkered with a Twist (Tutorial)

The other day I wanted to use tape for a checkered mani with a little twist--instead of splitting the nail into four perfect squares I wanted to use slanted lines so that it looks like the pieces 'lock' together.  My first attempt was a disaster because I didn't wait long enough for each step to dry, so I thought I'd slow down for round two and take pictures along the way.  Click "Continue reading..." below for the tutorial.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Del Sol - Superhero

I received Superhero as a gift not long ago and I've been anxious to try it.  It's a pearly baby blue color indoors and it turns into a light platinum pink when it's in the sun.  The pic below is two coats of Superhero taken in the shade (without sun):

As soon as I walked outside, the color began shifting to a very light pink / purple with the same pearly finish:

Although I really liked the shift from blue to pink, I should mention that both colors are very light, almost white / platinum so the color change isn't super obvious and dramatic like Ruby Slipper or Girls Night Out.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Just a Little Dangerous

Just a Little Dangerous from Sephora by OPI is a dark purple shimmer, described by Sephora as:
Inspired by the iconic pure-rock vibe—empowered, impassioned, and defined by the music—this sexy hue is tough and alluring, leather and lace.
I don't know if it's as edgy as the description makes it sound, but I do think the color is gorgeous.  I went through a purple phase last year where I was buying purple polishes left and right, and this one ended up being one of my favorites! The shimmer isn't too obvious indoors but it really lights up beautifully in the sun.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Confetti - Dreamdate

I've used this polish quite a few times since I first mentioned it two months ago, so I figured I should devote a post to it and share the love for anyone who wants to snag it at CVS for $1.99 while it's still available.

Dreamdate is a glittery frosted light pink, but the pink is very sheer so I generally use it as a top coat.  It's been perfect for classic french mani's (as above) when I want something extra shimmery, and I also use it over other colors to give them a frosty finish:

I did a quick swatch above to show some of the colors I've combined with Dreamdate in the past.  My favorite combination is definitely Dreamdate + black, though I have been known to frost just about any color I'm wearing if it strikes my fancy.  The frost comes out gold-toned (not pink) so I think it matches with just about anything.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Del Sol - Island Fever

Island Fever looks like a pearly lime green in the bottle, but once applied I thought it was a very pale pearly green.  I usually stay away from pearly polishes because they're so streaky even after several coats, but I ordered this as part of a holiday set along with Ruby Slipper and Heartbreaker from the Del Sol website and I figured I might as well give it a try.

Here is Island Fever without sun, looking very light green:

It's supposed to turn into the teal color of the hibiscus flower on the bottle when exposed to UV light (i.e., sun), but instead I got this:

I'm not even sure how to describe's a dark metallic with green, blue, and silver tones.  Not necessarily unattractive, but it just wasn't what I expected.

I have pretty mixed feelings about this polish . . . I could probably learn to like the dark outdoor color but the light green indoor color is definitely not my style.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Orly Witch's Blue

I was surprised by how shimmery and vibrant Witch's Blue looks outdoors, because it looks darker (and murkier) in the bottle.  I used two coats in the pic above and since I still had GCOCL plate K04 on my desk from Monday I stamped one of the flower designs using China Glaze Milennium:

The design I chose (in the center of the plate above) is pretty big but I didn't want it to cover the entire nail of every nail, so I rotated the design around and stamped only parts of it.  Each nail ended up looking different but they all matched since they are from the same design:

Friday, April 15, 2011

Yellow for Easter

I always notice when people wear yellow polish, but I hesitated to try it myself because I was afraid it'd make my skin look sallow or unnatural.  I finally gave into temptation when I saw Orly Lemonade because it's such a sweet, soft pastel color and I had the perfect excuse with spring in the air and Easter right around the corner.

Overall I think if I'm only going to have one yellow in my collection, this is the right yellow for me.  It's not too bright or neon and it makes me feel cheerful just looking a it.  The pic above was taken in the morning, and later in the day I stamped a floral pattern from Konad m64 using Konad black:

The yellow looks a little bolder here in bright sun but it's still a nice pastel shade.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Del Sol - Ruby Slipper

I bought a few of these Del Sol color-changing polishes back in January and now that it's spring (and soon to be summer) I had the urge to bring them back into rotation.  Ruby Slipper is a silver glitter that is supposed to turn bright pink (i.e., same color as the flower sticker on the bottle) when exposed to UV light.  It can be worn alone but I was most interested in using it as a top coat, so I also tried layering it over white, black, and gold.  This is what Ruby Slipper looks like indoors / in the shade:

....and this is Ruby Slipper in full sun:

As you can see on the index finger, Ruby Slipper goes from clear to translucent jelly red.  When used with a white base, it looks bright pink (a close match to the hibiscus sticker on the bottle).  The black doesn't change much because it's so dark.  My favorite transformation was definitely the gold:

The gold base is China Glaze 2030, and when combined with Ruby Slipper it becomes an awesome reddish gold metallic in the sun with silver glitter.

Barielle Sale

Thought I should mention for anyone interested--Barielle products, including their shades line of nail polishes, are 25% off right now when you spend $50 or more (+ free shipping) til this Friday, 4/15 on  Please note I'm not affiliated in any way--just wanted to share the head's up!

Monday, April 11, 2011

shades Secret Encounter

I'm so glad the sun is out so I can start taking pictures again!  For the mani above I used Secret Encounter from shades (by Barielle), which is a shimmery wine / magenta.  It reminds me of Just Dancin from Confetti except with more shimmer.

I taped off part of the nail to add a swipe of Orly Rage from the Foil FX collection, which is a rose / bronze foil, and then I stamped the big white flowers using GCOCL plate K04.

Edit (4/17): I posted a pic of GCOCL K04 here

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Alstroemeria Inspiration

My mom has these gorgeous alstroemerias (Peruvian lilies) growing in her frontyard and they were on my mind when I did this mani:

I used Confetti Vava Voom as the base because it's almost a perfect match for the flowers.  The design I stamped using pink Konad polish was from H Series plate H38:

To be honest, I'm not sure what the design is supposed to be.  Grapes and thorns, maybe?  Then on my ring finger I added two slices of fimo clay flowers over a layer of top coat.  Here's a shot of my nails next to the flowers:

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