Saturday, August 31, 2013

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 15: Delicate Print

Can we just change the date of the 31 Day Challenges from Tuesday and Friday, to Wednesday and Saturday? ;) It would appear those are the days I post on more frequently!

Let's cut to the chase, shall we? Today's (yesterday's) theme was "Delicate Print" and when I think of delicate things, lace, flowers, and butterflies come to mind. I considered doing a butterfly wing for a long time, but in the end, I settled on my first love - flowers! I actually ended up going on pinterest and typing in delicate flowers and one of the first things that popped up was this photo...Delicate rose? Check! Delicate Baby's Breath? Check! Ethereal feeling to the photo? Check! Perfection! I don't think that I am particularly good at painting roses so I felt a little apprehensive about trying to replicate this look but in the end, I tired my best. You'll have to tell me how close I got! ;) 

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Southwest Print in OPI Euro Centrale

Alright! So I mentioned before that I had done 2 manis with my Winstonia brushes prior to the ones I actually posted for my I'm sharing them now! This mani was inspired by a shirt I saw...and can no longer remember where I found it! :( But the colors in the shirt inspired me to use some of the colors in the OPI Euro Centrale collection!

This was another mani that I honestly didn't love when I first finishes it. I took it off right after I took pictures and I had no intention of posting it. However, after not looking at them for almost 2 weeks, I changed my mind and I think I like them enough to share here. 

Abstract Tulips

When I first received my Winstonia brushes, I knew I wanted to do something intricate and detailed to show the versatility and capabilities of the brushes. Well, I actually did 2 different manicures before I settled on my Sofa King Bueno nails. Not really sure why I didn't feel like these were worthy of being used for my review. But, after letting these photos sit on my computer for a few weeks, I realized that I actually really liked what I created. I recreated a pattern created by Gill of Pattern Addict, but she no longer has the print up on her site :(  

I think my biggest struggle with doing reviews is that I know I've got a funky style and I know that that doesn't "do" it for everyone. I always get super self conscious and paranoid that I'm not going to make the person I'm reviewing for happy - does this happen to anyone else?! Haha alright, end rambling, here's my abstract tulip mani! I so so so love how these turned out and I wish I had shared them sooner!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Winstonia Store Nail Foils Review

*Products provided in exchange for an honest review. Please see my disclosure policy for more info.* 
I have another review to share with you all today! I also received some nail foil from the Winstonia Store to try out and it is so fun! I have wanted to try nail foils for months now and have contemplated so many times just going for it and buying a bunch of colors. 

These foils are #17 from here and I also received some nail glue (which I believe you need to make these foils stick) which is free when you purchase 3D nail art supplies to the end of the month. It took me a few practice trial runs to actually figure a good technique to make these work, but in the end I really like how they turned out. 

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 14: Flowers

So I've failed yet again at posting on time for this challenge :/ If anyone is waiting with bated breath every Tuesday and Friday...well, I'm sorry I'm always late! haha I actually had this manicure painted and photographed late last night but I had some misgivings about posting them. I decided to sleep on it and after looking back over my photos, I decided to use these as my flower nails!

What were my hesitations, you ask? Well, I was putting a ridiculous amount of pressure on myself for today's mani. I feel like on the whole I am relatively good at doing floral manicures but that has become a bit of a double edged sword! I feel like I've got to outdo myself every time I do florals and I've managed to let it stress me out - sad right!? ;) Please tell me I'm not the only one who is crazy and does this to themselves!? 

I was also a bit hesitant about using this design for my flower look because I don't think they are immediately recognizable as flowers. I saw this print from colourlovers and went for it anyway. They are very abstract and more of a sketched and messy look (Meghan and I were totally on the same brain wave with our flowers!) and I thought that maybe I should stick with a more realistic look. In the end, though, I'm really happy with this mani. 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Lucy's Stash Guest Post

I'm so excited to share that the lovely Lucy over at Lucy's Stash asked me to do a guest blog post for her while she was on holiday for a few weeks - and of course of said yes! I feel so incredibly honored to have been asked...but it made me stress about producing something worthy of being posted on her blog! 

I ended up creating what I've seen called a "knit sweater" pattern (but also seen in tribal print design) and I've been wanting to share it since I did it! Do you know a better name for this pattern? Be sure to check out the blog post to find out more about this look and I would love to hear what you think either hear or on Lucy's post

Happy Polishing :)

Monday, August 26, 2013

Manicure Monday - Darling Poppy Inspired Print

Happy Monday, everyone! Hope your day is flying by so that you can run home and relax tonight. My latest Mani Monday tutorial is now up over at the Lulu*s blog and I wanted to share with you guys what I put together! I put together a look inspired by this Darling Poppy print dress and I've hopefully made it easy for you all to recreate it as well :) You can find the tutorial for this here. What do you think of this look?

Happy Polishing! :)

Winstonia Brushes review - Sofa King Bueno Girl

*Products provided in exchange for an honest review. Please see my disclosure policy for more info.* 
Today I've got a review of a brush set from the Winstonia store! So far I have used the brushes and dotting tools from this set and I can not say enough good things about the quality of these brushes for the price. After doing a few manis with these brushes and tools, I knew I wanted to do something detail oriented to see just how far these brushes could go. I can safely say I was not disappointed! 

This weekend while visiting home, I had a fabulous wine from a local winery, Chronic Cellars...and I fell truly, madly, deeply in love with their labels! I don't know what it is about the skeleton girl on this label, but I knew I needed to recreate her on my nails and it was a perfect opportunity to do this review. 

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Hunt The VMAs - Katy Perry inspired look!

How's everyone's Sunday night going? Did anyone watch the VMAs? I partnered up with The Hunt to do a mani inspired by Katy Perry's VMA dress and I am pleasantly surprised with the outcome :) She wore a leopard print dress that was covered in gold dragonflies and it seemed like such a daunting and tough look to replicate! I tried a few different looks but eventually ended up with leopard print and an accent nail with a gold dragonfly! The dragonfly is actually 6 different stud rhinestones that I got from the Born Pretty Store and it seemed like fate that I had all the right shapes to make this happen!

Change to Disqus for Commenting

Hello, all! I just wanted to write a quick post about a change that has just occurred on my blog! I've decided to switch to Disqus for commenting on my blog and I hope you'll all be okay with the change!

To quote a favorite movie of mine, A Knight's Tale, I've got something to say to Blogger's commenting system: "You have been weighed, you have been measured, and you have been found wanting." In other words, commenting via Blogger sucks. Majorly. It's incredibly inconvenient to figure out if someone has responded to your comment and I don't think that it is very conducive to open communication between the blogger and the reader. 

I know that everyone has their opinion on Disqus, but hopefully everyone feels more favorably about it than not. I want to try it out for a bit and see how the whole process goes. Disqus allows you to sign in with several different social media accounts, as well as create your own Disqus account (which I recommend because it provides a whole new level of notification and interaction!). I hope you'll bear with me if you have a really strong dislike of the commenting system! 

I am not unreasonable though! If you guys get in there and find that the whole commenting process is cumbersome, irritating, and an all around terrible experience, shoot me a comment or email and let me know! I would love love LOVE to receive feedback from you guys (good and bad) about how this new system works.

I looked through some of the past comments that have been imported into Disqus, and it does look like they are a bit wonky for past replied comments, but hopefully moving forward it will all be fabulous! 

Whew! Apparently that wasn't that quick of a's a picture of Fonzi being adorably handsome as an apology ;) 
Happy Polishing! :)

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 13: Animal Print

I'll start this entry with yet another apology - I'm so late with this post! I made an impromptu trip up to my parent's house (4 hours north of where I live) and was gone Friday and Saturday. But, I'm posting now!

The latest theme of the 31 Day Nail Art Challenge is animal print, and as Meghan had also mentioned in her post, animal print is not really my thing. This is in fact the very first animal print I have ever done - I've never had the desire or need to do it before now! 

When I think of animal print and nail art, leopard print and maybe zebra print and the two that really come to mind. I like a lot of the leopard print ones that I've been seeing lately that use unique colors and varying textures and really contemplating going down a similar route for today's look. However, I decided that I wanted to go with a print from either one of my favorite African animals - Giraffe or Elephant. I was going to make an attempt at the wrinkly and wise skin of an elephant, but as that is not really a "print" per say, nor is it a very recognizable design, I went instead with Giraffe print!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 12: Stripes

I can't believe we're already on day 12 of this challenge! I'm so happy that Meghan and I are sticking with this - I'm still really loving this challenge :) 

For today's stripes theme, I thought about doing something complex with striping tape and going crazy, but in the end, I settled on classic vertical stripes. I recently bought the China Glaze Avant Garden collection and I've kind of been obsessing over the colors since I got them. I used 38 strips of striping tape for this hand alone and I felt my eye start to twitch in frustration after about the 12th strip being placed on my nail! How is it that the tape suddenly acquired a magnetic attraction to my nails for this mani!? 

Best Twin Nails with Amber of LeftCoastLacquerista!

Hello my dears! I hope your Tuesday is going fabulously :) Today I've got a quick post about a fun trend going in the Instagram community! Bestie Twin Nails (identified with the hashtag #bestietwinnails) is when 2 nail art fiends collaborate and come up with a nail art concept that both artists complete. I've done a few of them over the past month or so and this will be the second one I complete with Amber of Left Coast Lacquerista :) We decided on dream catcher nails and I am just in love with what we came up with! I think these are both so cute! 

Here is my version: 
 And here is Amber's version - aren't the cute!
I used OPI's My Vampire is Buff as my base color, black and white acrylic for the dream catcher and accents, and the pink is China Glaze's Life is Rosy. I used a new Winstonia brush for this look and I am pleasantly surprised with the quality of the brushes from them! I will have a full review of them up soon :) 

Happy Polishing! :)

Monday, August 19, 2013

Gradient Nail Tutorial for Lulu*s!

Happy Monday, all! Just a quick post for right now - wanted to share my latest collaboration with the Lulu*s Blog! It's a super simple but fun gradient mani to go with their back-to-school week! Be sure to check out the blog post for the how-to on these :) 
Happy Polishing! :)

Saturday, August 17, 2013

31 Day Nail art Challenge - Day 11: Polka Dots

I'm so sorry that I'm posting this mani late - I suppose that's par for the course for me this challenge, but I'm still fighting this silly cold and it's seriously kicking my butt. I'm so tired! 

I was so excited about today's theme. I've been wanting to do a scene of some sort using polka dots for awhile and haven't had an excuse to do so lately. However, when I sat down to do the design that I've been thinking about for a long while, I was suddenly uninspired by that concept. To my frustration, my tastes vary per day - some days I'm feeling floral and other I'm feeling tribal or geometric (or anywhere in between!) and even if I had loved an idea the night before, suddenly I'll hate it the next day. Does this happen to anyone else?! 

Anyway! I recently splurged and bought OPI's Euro Centrale collection (I know everyone is obsessing over the San Francisco collection, but I'm really not feeling it) and I really wanted to use some of those polishes in today's look. I ended up doing a funky and simple triangle pattern with some tribal print undertones and I really love how it turned out. It definitely shows the touch of the hand, but I like that so much. When I think of Polka Dots, I tend to think of larger dots than these, but I think I'm still staying within the theme for today. 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 10: Gradient Nails

If you've been in the nail art world long enough, you might notice there are some discrepancies between the terms "gradient" and "ombre." Personally, when I first got into nail art, I learned that a gradient is when the color transition happens on each individual nail and an ombre is when the color transitions over a series of nails from a lighter shade of a single color to a darker shade off that same color (one color per nail). There are some who swear ombre is what I think of as a gradient and vice versa. There are others who think the terms are interchangeable. If the nail art world can have an up in arms debate about something, it would be the difference between the two terms.

As an homage to this classic nail art argument, I decided to do a gradient look that also ombres - meaning, each nail has two colors that transition AND each nail color will go from light to dark - that way I can appease everyone's opinions! What can I say, I'm a people pleaser ;) 

Monday, August 12, 2013

A Mattified Monday

Happy (hopefully!) Monday my dears! Today's theme for my Lulu*s tutorial is matte and I wanted to show the versatility of a good matte top coat - so I did 3 looks! They vary in difficulty so there is something for everyone, though the final look is more for show since there's no tutorial for that one. Be sure to check out their blog post for my 2 step how-to's!
Happy Polishing! :)

Friday, August 9, 2013

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 9: Rainbow Nails

Friday nights are my absolute favorite. I have been browsing numerous Fall polish collections (and yes, buying them as well) and painting my nails. I've also watched Best In Show, Ella Enchanted and I'm not on Hotel Transylvania - totally random titles but that's the nature of OnDemand. There will likely be at least 2 other movie viewings tonight ;) the boyfriend is out of town so I don't feel too bad about being a lazy bum (that and I'm still recovering from the office plague I caught so that's even more reason to watch movies all night). 

Today is the next theme in Meghan and my 31 Day Nail Art Challenge! I was initially really excited about this day because I've had a rainbow pattern saved on my phone for MONTHS and I knew I wanted to do it for today. However, my execution of said pattern was lacking so I switched gears and went with a super simple (and perhaps often done) striped rainbow look. While I'm sure several people have done something like this, I'm really happy with how these turned out. They're simple in design but visually interesting nonetheless. 

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Zoya Pixie Dust Fall 2013 Swatches

Happy Thursday, Everyone! I'm still feeling pretty lousy and hoping that I'll be on the up and up by tomorrow. For now, I've got some swatches to share with you all! I splurged and bought the entire fall Pixie Dust collection from Zoya a few weeks ago and thought I'd share my experience with them here with you all. It's a picture heavy post to hang in there!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 9: Metallic

I'd like to preface this post with two things. The first, I am SICK. I feel like complete crud and I'm fairly certain a baby elephant has been sitting on my sinuses all day long. To be completely honest with you all, I rushed tonight's look a bit because of this and I'm not overly happy with the final result. I apologize and I hope you'll forgive me a few weird and funky manis here and there. Second, I have been listening to the Harry Potter books on audio books so I blame that for that fact that this mani reminds me slightly of the Deathly Hallows symbol ;) 

Metallic. Hmm. I don't really "do" metallic polishes. I feel like they clash with my skin tone and I tend to avoid wearing them which completely bums me out because they are so fun looking. I am jealous of anyone who can pull them off with ease. I decided to go with Zoya's Trixie as my metallic polish and, since I so love southwestern style artwork, I decided to incorporate the two into this super funky (and messy :/ ) mani. 

Monday, August 5, 2013

Born Pretty Store Review - 3D Flower Decals

*Products provided in exchange for an honest review. Please see my disclosure policy for more info.* 

Tonight I have a review of some cute 3D flower decals from the Born Pretty Store! I really love nail art products from here because there are just so many fun, easy AND inexpensive products to choose from. It seems like they have new items up every time I look through their site (and they don't have just nail art supplies - I can get in trouble over there! ;) )

The nail art decals that I chose are super easy to use and really cute and pretty to wear. These decal easily peal off of the plastic film they come on and I'd say for the price, you get a TON of these things. There are 12 different styles ranging from roses, to daisies, to feathers and each style have variations therein. There are 25+ decals per style so overall, you get roughly 300 decals for a little under $5 (or cheaper with my 10% off code - SRL91!).

Limetastic Lulu*s

Hope everyone survived Monday! 

Today I've got my latest collaboration with the Lulu*s Blog to share with you. Lulu*s and Butter London are teaming up and holding a contest to win some Butter polishes so I used two fabulous polishes from the BL Color Clash collection - Cotton Buds and Wellies - to create this look. Be sure to check out the Lulu*s blog post for the tutorial as well as learn how to enter the contest for your chance at 2 polishes from the collection AND a $25 gift card! 
 Happy Polishing! :)

Sunday, August 4, 2013

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 7: Black and White Nails

You should all be scolding me for how terrible I am at keeping up with this challenge. I feel like I've got a good excuse this time since I was visiting family out of town the last two nights, but I still feel badly that I'm late with these posts more often than on time! An extra big sorry to Meghan and a ginormous thank you for putting up with me! ;)

For today's look, I was inspired by Arabic/Persian artwork! The boyfriend is trying to learn Arabic for his work and I noticed a really cool round pattern on the cover of one of his workbooks and was immediately inspired to find a pattern that I liked in the same vein. I fumbled around on google images and came across this one and I got to working! 

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Overindulgence Saturday!

Happy Saturday, all! Today I've got another Overindulgence Saturday post that I put together for Cocktails + Joints! I was still in the mood for lacy nails and did this scalloped base design for them this week. Be sure to check out the tutorial on their website for a step-by-step on this look. What do you think of it? Do you think you could try it? 
Enjoy your Saturday, and Happy Polishing! :)