Friday, January 31, 2014

OPI Holiday Liquid Sands

As you may or may not know I am a big fan of the textured polish trend.  I haven't tried many brands, but of those that I've tried, the OPI Liquid Sands are my favorites.  Last year I picked up a set of minis of the four original OPI Mariah Carey Liquid Sands polishes.  It took me almost an entire year to final post a review of each one, and you can view them here: Get Your Number, The Impossible, Can't Let Go, and Stay the Night.  Well, OPI released a HUGE holiday collection with six (I think) liquid sand polishes.  I was able to pick up a three-pack of minis from the holiday collection at Ulta.  There are two polish three-packs, the "darks" and the "lights."  I'll be bringing you the "lights," which includes Baby Please Come Home, Make Him Mine, and Silent Stars Go By. *pic heavy post*


First up is Baby Please Come Home (BPCH), a dusty, metallic lilac.  All three of these polishes had great finishes and decent wear times.  I wore each of them for two-three days and didn't experience any chipping or tip wear until the end of the second day.  In many lights, BPCH looked silver or even grey, though in direct light the purple tones shone through.




Next up is Silent Stars Go By (SSGB), a champagne/nude metallic polish.  When looking at this collection this polish seemed super cool and unique, and I knew I really wanted to get it if I could.  This polish is a great nude that adds a little bit of pop from the metallic finish and unique texture.





Finally, we have my favorite of the three polishes, Make Him Mine (MHM).  This polish immediately went on my wishlist from the moment I saw the first swatch.  I seem to have developed an obsession for rose-gold colored things, and this polish is no exception.  And, as you can see, it was the first polish of the three I wore, as this was before I broke my thumb nail...so you actually get to see a macro shot of this polish!






MHM also serves great as nude.  I love how versatile all of these colors are.  I was able to wear each of them to work, and on days went I needed to look extra professional as we had visitors coming in!  If you are hesitant about wearing a plain nude shade, try these polishes out!  I believe Ulta has these (and the other two mini packs from the holiday collection) on clearance right now, so get them while you still can!  I'm so glad I picked these out!  I wouldn't mind picking up the other Liquid Sand pack that includes Its Frosty Outside (silver), Kiss Me at Midnight (blue), and Emotions (black).  But I actually kind of like the textured Zoya shades of blue better...and I already own the Sally Hansen Sugar Coat black polish...

On a final note, today is my birthday!  I'll be away all weekend, as my boyfriend is taking me on a surprise trip (I have no idea where I'm going!), but will be back with my Birthdays/Celebrations post for FingerFood's Theme Buffet on Monday.  Have a great weekend!

--
Sarah

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

ellagee Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered

Today I have a new-to-me indie maker to share with you - ellagee!  A few weeks ago I was contacted by Heather of I Feel Polished because I had won her prize from Aly's Mega Giveaway!  And early last week I received my prize - a mini set of ellagee's You're The Top! collection!  Today I'll be sharing the first polish from the collection that I've swatched, Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered (herein refered to as "BBB").


BBB is described by Laura (creator of ellagee) as a clear base polish with shades of pink, green, blue, lavender, lilac, and silver hexagon and square glitter.  It is truly a beautiful pastel glitter topper!  I can't wait to layer this over more colors and use it all Spring!  I had absolutely no issues with the formula and did not have to do any fishing!  I do recommend giving it a good shake to remix before use, it will provide a more even distribution of glitter across each nail. :)



For these pictures I layered BBB over Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Pink Blink - another Christmas gift from my boyfriend.  He was with me when I saw this polish in Walmart one time, and added it to my Pinterest wishlist board while standing there.  He remembered the name (without ever looking at the Pinterest board) and picked it up for me the next time he went shopping alone!  He's so good! :)  Especially considering he thinks all shades of each color are the same... (i.e. "but you already have that pink!" ...no I don't have pastel pink, I just have a light pink)


I actually wore this mani to the birthday party my family through for me last weekend.  (Yes, I'll be a quarter of a century old on Friday!) :)

Yes, you may have noticed no macro picture this time!  I had REALLY bad break on my thumb nail about two weeks ago that I was able to patch...but it finally gave up last week so I had to chop it off.  I feel that because it's my thumb I can get away with not trimming the other nails down, so I'm going to go with that!  Just know there won't be any more macro shots until that nubbin grows back out!

This polish and the rest of ellagee's You're the Top! collection is available on her website here.

--
Sarah

Monday, January 27, 2014

The Lacquer Legion - Reinvention

Hello again!  Yes, this is indeed a first for Partly Cloudy With a Chance of Lacquer - two posts in one day!  Today is the first day of The Lacquer Legion.  The Lacquer Legion is a once-a-month nail art challenge that hopes to bring everyone together across all forms of social media by sharing your manis with the theme's hashtag.  This month's theme is "Reinvention," and the hashtag link up is #LLreinvention.

The best part of these challenges are they are completely open to your interpretation of the theme, instead of mandating a particular color, nail art style, etc.  For my interpretation of "Reinvention," I thought of a new day dawning, and taking on a new outlook, so I have chosen to do a sunrise gradient.


To do my gradient, I started with a base of white, using an unnamed LA Girls white polish.  Once that was dry I sponged on Ulta Sun-Sational (yellow), L'Oreal Mango Mama (orange), and Essie Peach Daiquiri (pink) using a small piece of foam sponge.  I know everyone swears by the cosmetic wedge sponges, but I've found they absorb too much of the polish.  I prefer using a small piece cut from a foam sponge like this one.

 



Unfortunately, due to the jelly finish of Peach Daiquiri, it sort of blended in and created more of a deeper orange color at the tips of my nails instead of looking pink.  Overall, I really like the way this mani turned out, but I do still look forward to perfecting my gradient technique.  Be sure to check the hashtag #LLreinvention on your favorite social media site today - I'll be sharing my mani on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest using the hashtag.


If you're interested in joining in on next month's Lacquer Legion challenge, be sure to check out their Facebook page for more information.  I'm sure they'll be posting February's theme soon.

--
Sarah

FingerFood's Theme Buffet Week 4 - Sparkle

Good morning!  This week's theme is Sparkle, for the fourth installment of FingerFood's Theme Buffet, so I decided to go with a gradient of two super-sparkly liquid sand polishes!


For this mani I used two of the OPI Mariah Carey Holiday collection liquid sands, Make Him Mine (pink) and Baby Please Come Home (purple).  The MC holiday collection was HUGE this year, with a bunch of liquid sands!  Using one of my Ulta giftcards I got for Christmas, I decided to pick up one of the three-pack of mini liquid sands that included Make Him Mine, Baby Please Come Home, and Silent Stars Go By.  These are the three "neutral" liquid sands from the collection.


Unfortunately, my pictures don't show how truly sparkly this mani is.  These shades are definitely on the metallic side and feature small metallic color-coordinated glitters in each polish that really catch the light.  I started with a base of two coats of Make Him Mine, and once dry, I sponged on a gradient of Baby Please Come Home.  I was a little heavy-handed with my gradient, so there is a bit more of Baby Please Come Home than I would've liked.




Both polishes have excellent formulas.  I will hopefully have a full review and swatches of all three polishes up by the end of the week.  I'm actually wearing Silent Stars Go By now!  Have a great Monday!

--
Sarah

Friday, January 24, 2014

Sephora Formula X - Thunder

Hello!  To sort of follow along with this week's weather theme (see this week's theme for FingerFood's Theme Buffet), I'm featuring a weather named polish - Thunder from the Formula X line by Sephora.  I love this polish so much!  My boyfriend picked up Thunder and Lightning from the Sephora X line for me for Christmas.  It was kismet since I'm a meteorologist. :)


For this mani, I started with a base of Splendid from The Color Workshop polish multi-pack I received from my in-laws for Christmas last year.  Splendid is a great mauvey-purple and very work appropriate.  The first coat went on a little thin and streaky.  I ended up going with two coats of this polish, but once in direct light, I realized I probably could've used a third.  It worked out in the end since I layered glitter over top the next day. :)


Thunder is made up of various sizes of pastel blue, pink, green, and white matte glitters.  It is from the "Xplosives Top Coats" collection from Sephora.  They really have some great glitter combinations in that collection, varying from the stereotypical black and white glitter that everyone is monopolizing on now.  You have to check them out!  If they weren't so expensive...I would definitely get a few more.


This is only one coat of Thunder, believe it or not!  Yes, this polish is extremely glitter packed!  I then followed up with one coat of NYC Matte Me Crazy to give the whole mani a matte look.  I do apologize for the tip wear in most of the photos.  I had worn Splendid to work for one day before adding Thunder over top.  Thunder wasn't as work appropriate, so I saved it for the weekend. :)



Anywho, I really enjoyed this mani as it is something a little different from what I normally wear.  The formula for Thunder was phenomenal for a polish so densely packed with glitter.  I've never tried any other polishes from Sephora before, but I can bet based on the price tag alone that they all have pretty great formulas.  I just wish they weren't so expensive!

I would also like to stop and thank every person who has shared my Facebook page during the #sharethelove event this week and for all 600+ new fans of the page.  Hopefully some of you have made it over here to check out the blog. <3

Have a great weekend!

--
Sarah

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Liebster Award

Hi all - no new nail art today, instead I'll be bringing you something a little different!  I've actually been nominated for the Liebster Award (again!) from two lovely ladies this week.  Emma from Emma's Space and Amanda from Lady Maid Nails.  I've actually been given this award a few times before, but it is always appreciated!  I enjoy doing the questionnaires that people come up with and it's a great way for you to get to know me better.  So thank you so much to Emma and Amanda for recognizing me for this award!!! :)



The Liebster Award looks to recognize new bloggers with less than 200 followers and help them get discovered.

Questions from Emma:

1. How long have you been blogging for?
I have been blogging since May 26, 2012...so almost two years!  Though I can't believe I've been at it this long...
2. Where is your favourite place to blog (eg bedroom, train..)?
I typically blog (and often paint my nails) while sitting on my bed.  I also blog from work sometimes... (shh - don't tell anyone!)
3. Have you met anyone famous? Were they nice, or not?
I'm a big NASCAR fan and have met many drivers while attending races, most of whom have been nice.  Otherwise I don't think I've met any celebrities.
4. Do you play any musical instruments?
Yes!  I played trombone for 11 years, though I unfortunately haven't played since I graduated from college.  I have also dabbled in baritone and piano.
5. Do you have any pets? What are they, and what are they called?
I currently have a cat named Addy.  Sometimes you'll see her photobomb the pictures I post on Facebook or the blog. As can be seen in the following picture from July 2012:


6. What is your favourite sport/sportsperson/sports team?
Holy cow - I am a HUGE (American) football fan!  I primarily follow college football - my favorite team is the Florida Gators and during football season I do weekly manis.  Check them out in the tabs at the top of the blog!
7. What is your favourite colour of nail polish to use?
I love soooo many colors.  I would probably say I'm most drawn to coral, blue, and teal.
8. Post a link to your favourite manicure post, and a reason why (if you don't have a mani post, your favourite post will do!)?
It would probably be a toss up between two manis I did in December - my snowflake mani and quilted design.  Both were for the ABC Challenge I participated in in 2013.
9. What is the best make up tip you have received/heard of?
Hmmm...I'm not super big into makeup - primarily because I don't really know how to apply any of it! (I generally don't count polish as makeup - but I will be including it in the next question)...but I have certainly learned a lot from some of my favorite beauty blogs, including Kat Stays Polished, Tanejas Bride, and XO Noelle to name a few...
10. If you could only use 3 make up products for 1 year, which 3 would you pick?
My three makeup products would be nail polish, mascara, and foundation.
11. Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?
Hopefully in 10 years I'll be married and will have started a family.  Maybe have a career in my degree field of meteorology...

Amanda's questions are the same as Emma's, but with one added bonus question:

12. Three unknown facts you would like to share!
  • I despise Disney (please, don't start shooting yet!) - I grew up about thirty minutes from Disney World, and while yes, it sounds great, the tourists and everything that goes along with the area are AWFUL!  Don't get me wrong I like Disney movies and everything, but I've gone to the theme parks enough that I don't ever plan on going again until I have kids (unless I don't have to pay!).
  • I  am a seventh generation Floridian and grew up on a family-owned beef cattle ranch in Central Florida.
  • I love to travel.  I have not left the contiguous US, and while there are several countries I would like to visit, I really want to go to all 50 states!  So far I've been to 18 out of 50.

I'm not going to tag anyone this time - but please feel free to tag yourself and do the questionnaire as well!  Happy Hump Day!

--
Sarah

Monday, January 20, 2014

FingerFood's Theme Buffet Week 3 - Weather

This week’s theme for FingerFood’s Theme Buffet is weather.  As a meteorologist, this category is perfect for me!  I wanted to something somewhat technical, but still be something somewhat artsy that would look cute on my nails.  As a native Floridian, I’ve experienced my fair share of hurricanes and tropical storms.   Most notably, would be the 2004 hurricane season when Central Florida (where I grew up) was hit by three Category 3+ storms (Charley, Frances and Jeane) in about eight weeks.  Fortunately, all of my family was safe and with minimal damage done to our homes, compared to others in our area.


So, for today’s mani, I decided to do the two primary symbols of a hurricane.  On my thumb, is the red cyclone symbol that designates a hurricane.  The symbol for tropical storm is the similar,, but without the center filled in.   On my ringer finger is the flag that symbols a hurricane warning (i.e. winds greater than 74mph) – two square red flags with a black square center. (Anyone else feel like Fun with Flags with Dr. Sheldon Cooper here?)  A single one of these flags indicates a storm warning with winds from 55-73mph.


For this mani, I started with a base of Pure Ice Frosted Ice Calypso.   This polish SUPER old!  Years before my polish obsession started.  I highly doubt they still make this polish but it’s a gorgeous frosted turquoise.  The formula is still great, though like most frosted polishes, there were visible brush strokes, but luckily a coat of Seche Vite smoothed them right out.  All nails have two coats of Calypso.

Then, using the end of my cleanup brush as a dotting tool, I used Revlon China Flower to put a large dot in the center of my thumb nail to create the hurricane symbol.  I then used a thin striping brush to make the “swooshes” on either end.


For the flags, I taped off the two small squares and then used China Flower to fill in each square.  I really believe I’m getting the hang of striping tape, because I was able to execute this part flawlessly!  Then after waiting for all of the red polish to dry, I went back with a thin striping brush and used LA Girls unnamed black to create the flag pole and fill in the small black squares inside the flag.


Once everything was dry, I went back and added a final coat of Seche Vite, being careful not to smear any of the nail art, which smoothed everything out.  The macro image is "upside down" this week, because this is the correct direction for the hurricane symbol to face.


Overall, I am really pleased with how this mani turned out.  I think Calypso made a great base as it adds a good contrast with the red in the nail art and actually resembles the color of the ocean.  This final picture is probably the most true-to-color for Calypso.  Be sure to check out the other WX manis below!

--
Sarah


Friday, January 17, 2014

Colorblock Mani

Today I'll be bringing you my first attempt at a colorblocking mani.  While looking for inspiration for my geometric mani I did on Monday for FingerFood's Theme Buffet, I saw lots of gorgeous colorblock manis on Pinterest - so I wanted to try one of my own!  This pin, from Glitter and Gloss Nails, was probably my biggest inspiration as far as the designs on each nail.


Let me start by saying, this color combination looked much better in my head, lol.  I've seen lots of mint-black-gold manis and mint-white-gold manis, so I thought - why not combine all four colors?  Well...I don't know...but something did not work out color-wise.  Perhaps the green is too grassy and not enough minty?  Except that I love how this mani turned out, I'm really not a fan of the colors!  Maybe I should've done with grey instead of green...oh well...next time.


The polishes I used for this mani were Sally Hansen Insta-Dri In a Splash (green) and two unnamed LA Girls polishes (black and white).  I started with a base of China Glaze Mingle with Kringle (another Christmas gift from my boyfriend!), which is an AMAZING one-coater with lots of sparkle!  I wore Mingle with Kringle on its own for a few days before hand and I LOVE it!  It's so unique.  I look forward to using it in nail art since it's so opaque.  I'll have to swatch it on its own sometime.


The only other possible explanation for why the colors just don't work is that maybe Mingle with Kringle was too yellow of a gold.  Perhaps a more muted metallic shade would've worked better. 


But I am so proud of the straight lines I did on each nail!  I tend to be a perfectionist, and I was completely satisfied with the way I did the striping tape and colorblocking.  I look forward to trying this again with some other colors and perhaps incorporate a fourth color for the colorblocking portion as I saw in many of the pins I looked at.  Overall, this is definitely a technique I look forward to trying out again as it was nowhere near as difficult as I anticipated it to be.  Have a great weekend everyone!

--
Sarah

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Zoya Kissy

Happy Hump Day!  Today I'll be sharing another one of my Christmas gifts with you - Zoya Kissy.  My boyfriend got me the Zoya holiday giftset that included Kissy, Twila, and Rina, among many other polishes (some of which I've already shared).  So far I've only used Kissy!


Kissy is full of fine red, pink, and purple glitter and holographic bar glitters.  The macro image towards the end of the post allows you to see all of the colored glitter in this polish.  All of the glitter combined gives the polish a red look that is buildable, but here I've chosen to layer it over JLB Cosmetics Cherry Pop. Cherry Pop is a magenta colored metallic from the same set as Jade and Deep Sea that I used in my geometric mani I posted on Monday.


I'm not sure why Blogger changes the colors of some of my images when I upload them here...but the above picture and the macro both show MUCH more pink than this really was.  It was much more of a rich cherry red that looked like a dark magenta in indirect light.


The formula on Kissy was great (as with every Zoya polish I've tried!) and went on smoothly considering the amount of glitter in this polish.  There was little to no fishing for the bar glitters either.  I managed to pick some up every time I dipped the brush into the bottle.  I did add an additional coat on some nails so that they would all have roughly the same amount of coverage of bar glitter. 


Also, my apologies for the chip on my thumb in the macro image.  I didn't even realize it was there until after I took the pictures.  But you can clearly see the red and purple glitter in Kissy!  Gorgeous!


This polish was so much fun!  It spiced up an otherwise office-friendly manicure of Cherry Pop.  And unless you were in direct light it wasn't too super sparkly and distracting, which automatically makes it work appropriate in my book.  I look forward to trying out Twila and Rina now as well.  Twila (blue) has a similar formula to Kissy with the silver holographic bar glitter, while Rina is made up of all green glitter.  I wonder how a gradient would look with Kissy and Twila? 

--
Sarah

Monday, January 13, 2014

FingerFood's Theme Buffet Week 2 - Shapes/Geometric

Good morning!  Week two of FingerFood's Theme Buffet, was actually a bit of a challenge for me since I had absolutely NO IDEA what to do for a geometric design.  I scoured Pinterest for the last week or so trying to come up with inspiration.  I finally found this pin and decided to use it as my inspiration.  I have used striping tape for a few manis, but I always feel like it's a ton of work to cut up hundreds of one inch pieces of striping tape just for me to get polish all over it and remove it seconds later.  I like the end result, but I tend to be very impatient. ;)


I started with a base of LA Colors Pearl.  It took three coats to make it opaque, though you could still see a bit of VNL.  I knew it wouldn't be too big of a deal since I was adding nail art over top.  I thought Pearl was a great base color as it provided contrast without being really bold, as a white base would have been.



I then added all the little pieces of striping tape to each nail to create the crosshatch pattern on my nails.  I then painted a coat of JLB Cosmetics Deep Sea on all my nails, with the exception of my ring finger, which I used JLB Cosmetics Jade, for an accent nail.  Both of these are lovely one-coater metallic polishes.  I have already shared both of these polishes on the blog - you can see the posts here and here.  I often use these metallics as a base for glitter or nail art since they're quick one-coaters.



My only complaint with these polishes is that they're so difficult to photograph!  I know my set up for picture taking is not ideal, but metallics and super glittery polishes HATE my camera!  I am super proud of this mani and glad that I only had two boo-boos, on my thumb and ring finger.  Fortunately, they're not too noticeable.  Be sure to check out the other geometric nails the other ladies in the group have posted below - there are seriously some fantastic nail artists in this group!

--
Sarah
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