Tuesday, May 28, 2013

this gradient is sunsational!

Hellooooooo lovelies, hope you are all swell.

I teased this post on my Instagram, and here is the finished product!

I love neon and I love gradients and I love leopard and I love pink & purple.
But you may notice I'm holding a blue bottle... Because I did this with a blue polish!

The blue polish from the new China Glaze Sunsational Collection is a super sheer jelly, and I said to myself, "self, do you think this would work for a layering gradient?"
And yes, it sure did!

To create this gradient effect, I did not use a sponge! I just used the polish brushes. Here's how you do it:

Start with a solid base - I used China Glaze - You Drive Me Coconuts, a neon barbie pink. (LOVE that name.)
You should let the base dry so you can easily paint on your gradient without smearing the color below.

To create the gradient, you use a jelly polish in successive coats to build up the color. I used China Glaze - Isle See You Later, a sheer blue.
You start your first coat close to the cuticle, and then the next coats start further and further up so that the color is most concentrated at the tip. 

The above photo gives a rough idea of where you should start your coats.
After doing the three coats, I added more jelly in short strokes where I felt I needed it to build up the color properly. It is easy to do this because the jelly is so sheer, it really blends well.

And don't forget your topcoat, that helps to blend the overall look.

I love it soooooo much and it was so easy. It only takes a couple of minutes!

And then of course I had to stamp over it with one of my favorite images! Konad Q1.

Why does my hand look extra claw-like in that photo? I don't know...
I am just smitten with this manicure. And now I can't wait to try this with some of the other colors from the collection!

I promise I'm working on swatches of the whole 12-piece set... I'm just taking my damn time because every time I put one on, I can't take it off!! They're amazing. F'reals.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

another blotty mani!

I really, really like doing blotted manis.

It's just so stinkin' easy but looks really great.
This manicure kinda combines two other recent looks I posted - the blotty mani with the Essie colors and the leopard mani with the CG Sunsational colors.
It uses the spongey/blotty technique with both Essie and CG colors.

I started with two coats of China Glaze - Highlight of My Summer.
I waited for it to dry, and then added a coat of China Glaze - That's Shore Bright on top, and quickly blotted most of it off with a balled-up tissue.
I repeated that process with Essie - Madison Ave-hue.
Topcoat to cover the texture, and you're done.

I had a bunch of people ask me how to do this look while I was wearing it. They look at me pretty funny when I tell them how... And then I just tell them to go to my website and then sometimes I get funnier looks. Hey, I'm a nail nerd. It's okay. I embrace it.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

sunsational leopard

I'm not really sure why I keep disappearing for several days, but hey, here I am again!

I recently treated myself to the entire China Glaze Sunsational collection, AKA the 2013 summer neons...
You may remember that last year I won the entire set of 2012 neons and so for some reason I felt like I needed all the 2013 ones as well. Right? Right.
(Plus the majority of them are totally "me" colors so SHUSH.)

I haven't yet had a chance to swatch them all but I've worn a few, and here's one of the ways I wore them.

The purple polish is China Glaze - That's Shore Bright and I think it is already safe to say that it is my favorite of the collection. It is a fantastic bright purple creme, I wouldn't call it neon but it is very vibrant. Full-on neon polishes tend to look funny on me so I am really happy with this collection overall because none of them are eye-searing, they're all just really bright and fun.
The formula of TSB is fantastic - it needed just two coats and had no application issues.

The green is China Glaze - Highlight of My Summer. This one was a little more finicky to apply, and it will drag if you aren't careful to use a light touch and let it dry just a tiny bit longer between coats. If you let it drag, you'll need three coats to cover your bald spots, but if you're careful you can get away with two.
Despite that minor annoyance, I still adore this polish and I love how it is like a neon pastel.

I did the leopard print freehand with a dotting tool.


Thursday, May 16, 2013

China Glaze Fairy Dust vs. OPI Yule Love This Silver

A reader (Miss Intensity Nails, to be exact) commented on my last post, asking if I could shed some light on the difference between China Glaze - Fairy Dust and OPI - Yule Love This Silver.
The two bottles were nearby so instead of just telling her, I thought I would show her!

(Posted this nice bottle shot on my Instagram.)

These are both clear holographic topcoats with very fine silver holo glitter. What's the difference?

One is much more dense than the other. That's the OPI on the left and CG on the right.
Yule Love This Silver is more glitter-packed than Fairy Dust.

Shown is just one coat of each over the color I was already sportin', China Glaze - Shell-O from the new Sunsational collection for summer. I bought all 12 of those babies and I can't wait to show them all off to you guys!

Probably a neon wasn't the best color to do this comparison on, but hey, work with what ya got.
Both these topcoats are very sparkly and add that extra oomph to any mani, but I prefer the OPI just because it has more glitter and is more sparkly!
But the CG is nice for when you're looking for a more subtle touch of glitter.

I hope this comparison did the trick :)

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

i lily love this polish


I've posted about OPI's I Lily Love You before, but here's another post because it's so great.

This time, I've layered it over OPI - Pink Friday, and I added OPI - Yule Love This Silver on top for a little added sparkle.

Pink and sparkly nails can always cheer me up!

Aaaaand don't forget to follow me on Instagram where I posted a nice bottle pic while I was doing this mani.

Have a great day!

Monday, May 13, 2013

spongey springy mani

I liked the new Essie spring polishes so much that I wore two manis with them in one week! That's craziness.

I decided again that I wanted to wear all four colors at once. So I did this sponged/blotted look! (With glitter on top, of course.)

To get this look, I started by painting all of my nails with Essie - Bond With Whomever, the darker of the two purples.
Once that was dry, I added a coat of Essie - Avenue Maintain (blue) and then quickly I blotted most of it off with a balled-up tissue. This removes most of the wet polish but leaves some in a cool textured pattern. And the results are different every time!
I then did the same thing with Essie - Go Ginza (lighter purple) and Essie - Madison Ave-hue (pink.)

On top of all that, I added Sonoma Nail Art - Wine Country Wedding, a really cool white glitter.

It looks a little bit acid-trippy, right? Haha! I'm loving it!
I got a ton of compliments on these nails, too. What do you guys think?

Sunday, May 12, 2013

stamping FAQ has been updated!

Hi everyone! I kinda took a week off from my blog last week... Not sure why but I just did. Perhaps it will motivate me to post more this week!

I realized that my Stamping FAQ post needed some serious updating so I've just done that and then updated my other pages as well. And then I reverted back to my old blog template because I missed it!

As well, I added a link to my Instagram because I love that shiz.
Aaaaand just so this post is not photo-free, here's a picture from my IG. I've been crocheting a lot lately...

I crocheted this My Little Pony!! Princess Sparkle. Isn't she adorable? I made her for my friend Staci and it was really hard to give her away... Perhaps I should make my own!

Now... to write some nail posts. Have a great day!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Essie Madison Ave-hue Skitttles

Happy Sunday!

The other day I popped into one of my favorite places - Winners.
Waiting for me on the shelf was this!

A mini color cube of Essie's spring collection, Madison Ave-hue! I was so excited because I love Essie but since my pro supply store stopped carrying it, I can't bring myself to pay the crazy price for it at drugstores.

Before I show you the colors, I'm going to rant about the name. HA.
Ave-hue? AVE-HUE?! Did you sneeze?! AVE-HUEEE!!!

Why isn't it called Aven-hue? Avenue, aven-hue. It sounds better. It makes more sense. Why did no one in the naming department think of this? Perhaps I should be a nail polish namer.

I couldn't decide which color I wanted to use first so I wore them all. Yay for skittles!

Essie - Go Ginza (pinky) is a very light lilac creme. Great formula, just two coats for full coverage.

Essie - Madison Ave-hue (ring) is a nice medium pink with great shimmer, like a pink version of Smooth Sailing but a little less shimmery. The formula is wonderful! 2 coats.

Essie - Avenue Maintain (middle) is a medium blue creme. I think there miiiight be some shimmer in there but I'm not sure - if there is, it is super faint. 2 coats!

Essie - Bond With Whomever (index) is another light lilac, but not as light as the previous. Again the formula is wonderful, only needs two coats!

This collection also includes a red and a light green-gray, but they're not in the mini set, and I don't really like them anyway, so that works out.

l love wearing skittles! And I'm totally adoring my new rings so I had to show them off. (You may have already seen one on my Instagram!)
If you're interested, the midi ring is from Urban Outfitters and the other is from Forever 21.

What do you guys think of this Essie collection? I think the colors work well together and make a great spring collection and I look forward to doing more looks with them!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Lush Lacquer - Clowning Around

Today's post is about one of the coolest glitter polishes ever.

Forever ever.

Lush Lacquer - Clowning Around
Oh god. Oh goddy god. This is beautimous. I first saw it here on Chalkboard Nails and I pretty much bought it instantly.

My nails may look a little thick here because I wore this polish over OPI GelColor in Alpine Snow - I wanted to wear the gel so my manicure would last through my trip without having to change it. (However the GelColor did not agree with me this time for some reason and it all lifted after like 2 days and I peeled it off and wore a Lippmann I bought while in St. Louis.)

This is two coats of glitter plus a little dabbling to fill any big empty spaces.
I just can't get over how bright and fun the glitters are, and it is just so freakin' cute. It almost looks like neon splatters. Diessssssss for it.

I can't wait to wear this again!! Over all kinds of pastels. All of them. Yum.

You can get this polish on their Etsy site here! Do it. You know you want to.