Thursday, November 27, 2014

Jamberry Nail Wrap Review & China Glaze Sun of a Peach

This post is long overdue, but here I am, ready and willing to give my full report on my only experience with Jamberry Nail Wraps.

If you haven't heard of it, the concept is similar to the full coverage nail stickers (Sally Hansen, Revlon, etc.), except that these are vinyl and are applied with heat. They're said to last way longer and generally be of better quality. I got a free sample from a friend-of-a-friend, and although the concept really didn't interest me I thought I would give it a shot.

I was sent two different samples, Funky Cheetah and Pickled Paisley. I paired them with China Glaze Sun of a Peach (one of my favourite summer colours).

Funky Cheetah

Pickled Paisley

My first thought was: wow, what a pain to apply. You have to take a hair dryer and hold it up to the wrap while the vinyl heats up, then apply it to the nail with an orange stick, file it down, and heat it again. This process annoyed me enough with only two nails to do, let alone ten. I also have very sensitive hands to cold and heat, so the second round of heat was a little much for me to handle.

Once the two wraps were on though they did look incredible, I'll give them that.

Fast forward 7 days.

Now you can see here that the wraps still look like the first day I applied them, and the nail polish is quite chipped. If you were someone who didn't feel confident with polish and wanted something long lasting, and didn't want to spend $30-40 at a salon, I would recommend these wholeheartedly. They'd also be potentially great for someone who doesn't want to risk ruining their nails while waiting for them to dry.

That being said, If you're someone like me who loves changing her polish every 3-4 days, and doesn't mind actually painting her own nails, I would pass on these. At $15 each I can't really see it being affordable for me, and it's way beyond the effort I'm willing to put in. At least with regular nail polish I can be at my computer or watching TV while I apply. The nail wraps are limiting because the dryer is loud and it's a pretty involved process.

So there you have it, they look excellent and they're durable, but they just aren't suitable for someone like me.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

My Personal Pinstrosity

Like many modern women, I love Pinterest, and I love cheese. I was pinning the other day and I came across and easy microwave mac n cheese recipe, which I should have known was too good to be true.

I love seeing posts like this, so I thought I would share mine with all of you. The ONLY thing I did differently was use spaghetti. Major fail.

Oh Pinterest, what a risky business.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Nautical Nina

This is a post dedicated to my friend Jenny (Nenny). Last week she asked me to do a kiwi inspired mani and (in my opinion) it failed miserably. I still wanted to do something reminiscent of her, so I decided to finally follow through with the nautical theme I'd been thinking of trying. Nautical fashion always makes me think of her, and she always calls me Nina so it made it easy to bring things full circle.

Anyway, here is my take on a nautical themed manicure, for Jenny.

I used Finger Paints Paper Mache  (thank you Nail Board for the rec), American Apparel Passport, China Glaze Hey Sailor and Orly Luxe.

Phone pic

This was supposed to last me until the end of the week, but one of my nails broke all the way down to the nail bed, so I cut them all down and repainted them. Oh well!

This is for you Nenny!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

China Glaze Deviantly Daring

I bought this polish recently on a whim. I was at Sally's getting myself a new white and a nail buffer when I saw a promotion where I could receive a ridge filling base coat if I purchase two China Glaze polishes. I'm almost always lemming a handful of polishes that I don't NEED but have been eyeing, so I took this as an opportunity to grab a couple. I picked it up along with Swing Baby (my current pedi, ugh I'm in love) despite having plenty of variations of it, or ways of recreating it through layering.

Anyway, after that little ramble, I quite like it! It's a foily turquoise duochrome that lends greener in some light and bluer in others. I found that in natural light it seemed more blue, and in fluorescent lights at work you could see more of the green.

 The application was just lovely, the pictures below are two coats.

Fluorescent lighting

Natural light, indirect sunlight

Fluorescent lighting

Natural light, indirect sunlight

Natural light, indirect sunlight
It's quite lovely and I'm happy to have picked it up. Now the problem will be choosing which of my many shimmery blue/turquoise polishes to use.

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter Nails - Pastel Stripes

Happy Easter! For today I did a fun pastel rainbow using some colours I rarely even look at any other time of the year. I didn't bother using tape to make these lines perfect, handmade Easter eggs rarely are! Well, mine aren't anyway.

Pink: Revlon Peach Petal
Yellow: China Glaze Lemon Fizz
Green: OPI Gargantuan Green Grape
Blue: Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Blue-Away
Purple: OPI Planks A Lot

Because these shades are so light I needed three coats of each (except the Blue, but I did it anyway), which was simple enough but fairly time consuming. When looked at in the shade they really POP, it's fabulous! There's definitely a part of me that has a soft spot for rainbows. Don't tell anyone.


Sunday, March 24, 2013

Robin Eggs: A Spring Manicure

By looking through my newsfeed over the last month or so, it seems that the people around me are craving spring more than usual. I don't know if it's because we were spoiled last March with 20+ degree weather, or that we've been getting a seemingly endless supply of snow, or maybe I'm just paying closer attention because I've been ready for spring since January. Regardless, I've been succumbing to spring-like choices for my nail colour in hopes that maybe the weather will start to warm up.

This week I bring to you my rendition of robin eggs.

Lately, just like many of you out there, I've been spending a lot of my time on Pinterest. I really love finding beautiful manicures that other people have done, but even more so I love getting inspiration for my nails from non-nail related posts. Since Easter is right around the corner too there's been a lot of egg posts flying around, and I found this photo especially striking.

For this look I used an unnamed Urban Outfitters Smush (I think? It came in a collection with no names on it!) and I sponged China Glaze For Audrey on top. Then to achieve the brown specks, I dipped a straw into a tiny bit of American Apparel Raccoon and blew through it toward the nail surface. I had to make sure to keep my distance from my nails while blowing the polish through the straw, otherwise the splatters would have been too saturated.
I topped it off with some Joe Fresh Matte top coat because it's not as mattifying as Essie's Matte About You and I didn't want too flat of a finish, since the eggs in the photo above have a bit of a sheen to them.

I'm more than halfway done my bottle of For Audrey, which is practically unheard of for me. It's one of my favourite colours and I love finding different ways I can use it.

Anyway, here's hoping spring comes soon!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Clover Fields: A St-Patrick's Day Manicure

'Ello 'ello folks! While I'm still waiting on the decision to be made on a new camera, I thought I'd bring you some phone pics of  my current polish. It's a fun little St-Patrick's day manicure inspired by fields of clovers. I wanted to have the textured look to give it a bit more depth instead of settling for a solid colour, since when you look out into a field you don't see a flat shade green.

This is after about four of days of growth and a bit of tip wear. I achieved this effect by dragging the colours through each other while they were still wet, similar to what I did here. I started with OPI Green-wich Village and blended in some Don't Mess With OPI.

Happy St-Patrick's Day everyone!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Christmas Holly

Although I haven't been posting this holiday season, I assure you my nails have been festive. I'm growing increasingly aggravated with my camera and I find photographing my manicures quite frustrating... so I haven't been wanting to attempt it. This one coming up is actually from my phone. Sorry for the negativity but I'm trying! :)

I used Orly Luxe, American Apparel and China Glaze With Love!

Merry Christmas!!!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Essie Penny Talk

Again with the soft tones, I seem to be really loving the more delicate side of nail polish these days.
This is the polish I went looking for when I picked up No Place Like Chrome from the Mirror Metallics collection, and I thought I'd missed it but the store had restocked when I passed by this weekend.

I must say though, I'm not liking it at much as it's silver counterpart. The formula is really difficult to work with. Every bump, quiver, and hesitation is noticed by this polish. I have small dents on my nails right now and this finish really accentuates them. Maybe next time I'll use a ridge filling base coat. The colour itself is beautiful though, I can't deny that... but a crummy formula can really make or break loving a lacquer.

To be fair, I was hungover while doing this manicure so maybe that has something to do with it.

This is in direct sunlight.

Here we are with other metallic looking things. See the dents? Going back over the same spot with this polish was next to impossible. It left streaky, uneven splotches all over the place! Rose gold is quite a trendy colour right now so if you must get this I totally understand, just be wary of the questionable formula.

Friday, November 23, 2012

American Apparel Mount Royal

I must admit this nail polish is one of my staples. It's the first AA polish I ever bought and the colour hasn't gotten old. It's essentially a one-coater, other than for some touch ups, and it dries incredibly fast. The richness and diversity of the shade makes it a must-have in my opinion. American Apparel is pretty good in terms of nail polish quality.

After this photo I'm 100% certain I need a new camera. I was taking this in direct natural light this morning, and even though the sun wasn't out it was still quite bright out. This is the least noisy of the batch and I still find it unbelievably grainy.

Anyway, AA Mount Royal gets two big thumbs up from me!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

OPI Stranger Tides & China Glaze For Audrey

Here we have another phone camera shot. This was taken sometime early summer (maybe late spring) and was honestly one of my favourite manis of the summer. It was just so beachy, it reminded me of sand and the sky. I was really feeling softer colours and pastels for a few months there, which I normally find incredibly boring so I assume that's part of why I didn't bother blogging any of it.

I like that they're alternating but that the difference between the two colours isn't overly dramatic. Creme finishes are by far my favourite so overall this mani was a 100% clear winner in my books.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Essie Camera

Once again the busy-ness of life is starting to grab hold of me and I haven't had a chance to photograph my nails these days. However, I have something from the spring to share. Essie Camera is a really bright reddish pink that reminds me somewhat of China Glaze Rose Among Thorns. Except I like it more (shhh).

This photo came from my phone and the clarity is actually quite impressive! Could it be my phone cam is better than my standalone one? Gosh.

It was so bright and striking, though I must admit I picked it up anticipating it to lean more pink than red. This being said, I tend to buy pinks and then hate them, whereas I LOVED this one so maybe (probably) it was for the best.

Since the daylight these days is LIMITED at best, I'll be putting some more phone pics as I go along, how does that sound?

Saturday, November 3, 2012

China Glaze Champagne Kisses over Orly Powder Puff

With all the Halloween excitement I really needed a soft, gentle, palate cleansing nail polish. It's almost like I needed a bit of a breather from all the  high-octane manicure I've been doing lately. I wanted something simple and unassuming, so I reached for Orly Powder Puff. Normally this isn't a colour I would wear, but this summer I was really enjoying soft, muted tones.

I stopped in at Sally Beauty and Trade Secrets and grabbed some holiday polish. The first on my list was from the China Glaze Holiday Joy collection: Champagne Kisses. It's a clear polish with mall rose-gold glitter. I figured even though it was sparkly it wasn't too flashy and would look pretty over Powder Puff!

In direct sunlight
This is three coats of Powder Puff and one coat of Champagne Kisses.

I love this one. The shimmer is so delicate.

In the shade
This is definitely a switch from what I'd been posting lately and I really needed it! Enjoy your Saturday everyone :)

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Halloween Frankensteins

In case you weren't aware, I love the holidays - especially Thanksgiving, Halloween and Christmas. From the 1st of January I spend my time patiently waiting until September when I can start being excited about all the things I love about this time of year. Without fail, come mid-July I start dreaming of Fall and have to suppress it because eventually there will be snow on all the things and I will regret having spent my summer wishing it was Autumn.

That being said, I didn't really contribute much in terms of Halloween manicures to my blog last year so to make amends I am bringing you yet another set before the haunting season passes.

These are my Frankies. It was my first time trying them and I don't think they turned out too horribly. I was doing them at dear boyfriend's house and I don't exactly have the ideal set-up like I would at my house. The lighting is poor, I have to sit on his bed, the table is far away, etc. That being said, I'd much rather spend time with him than achieve the perfect manicure, so this is the result. 

I do wish I had been a little more patient before putting the top coat on, it dragged the eyes around a bit but the wind from hurricane Sandy was making me nervous and I wanted to get home before any rain started.

They're pretty cute though, I must admit. They're distracting while I'm at work, with their sneaky little faces bouncing off the keys as I type. It feels like I'm wearing 10 little fingers puppets (and yes, I did give it a shot on my right hand but they're looking especially ghoulish and not very presentable). 

I used OPI Greenwich Village as the base, So Easy Stripe Rite in black for the hair, stitches and mouth, Rimmel French Tip White for the eyes and Konad Black for the pupils.  

My pinky nail is definitely the favourite of the bunch, what do you think? I like his beady little eyes. 

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Dexter Morgan - Blood Spatter Analyst v2

On a complete whim yesterday I picked up Essie's No Place Like Chrome and I wanted to figure out a way to incorporate it into a Halloween manicure. Since Dexter plays tonight I decided to do another blood splatter set, but this time using silver as the base so it looks like blood on Dexter's knife!


You can find my original version and a tutorial here.

A rare sighting of my right hand.

Okay is it just me or are these pictures turning out kinda fuzzy? They're clear on my computer until I upload them to Blogger. Anyway - I like it so much more with silver base! It gives it more of a "wow factor."

My tools and canvas.

Look how shiny the silver is with the flash!

The process looks so gruesome, I love it!

Essie No Place Like Chrome, before the blood bath. I used Revlon Valentine for the blood. I love the new Essie polish. It was very opaque, but I did notice that if I tried going over the same spot for a touch up while it was still wet the brush left even more bald spots. Overall though this is a 1-2 coater max.

I looooove getting to theme my nails, it makes the whole process so much more enjoyable (for me anyway). I'm looking forward to the sunshine coming back, it's been a while... and because of the hurricane will still be a long wait. Nail photos always turn out nicer in sunlight.

I have at least one more blog-worthy manicure planned before Halloween, see you soon!