Saturday, May 31, 2014

FingerFood's Theme Buffet Week 21 - Nature

This week's Nature prompt for FingerFood's Theme Buffet ended up being quite difficult for me - so here I am squeaking it in on the last day.  I had four challenges that were due this week (an already short week due to the holiday) and I usually only post three days a week.  I thought about combining my Twin Nails, Lacquer Legion, and FingerFood Buffet manis all in Wednesday's post, since the prompts were similar enough, but decided that made me feel like a slacker.  So I just combined my Twin Nails and Lacquer Legion nails.


I was essentially at a loss for inspiration for this mani.  I really did not want to do flowers again since I feel like I have done them a lot recently.  So I ended up asking my boyfriend for a suggestion.  While I didn't do exactly what he suggested, he did inspire me to do the grass with a striping polish and to draw the sun.  The intention was to make it look like a picture you would've drawn as a kid.



For this mani I started with a base of Nails Inc. Chelsea Physic Garden and used LA Colors Art Deco stripers in Bright Green and Hi-Lite for the grass and the sun.  I then stamped butterflies using Spoiled Let's Get Sushi.  Please ignore the ugly butterfly on my index finger...I failed at stamping a bit on that nail.  I hope everyone has a great rest of your weekend!

--
Sarah

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Twin Nails: Bird of Paradise

Hello!  I have a dual purpose post for you today!  This month's theme for the Twin Nails challenge was flowers.  My twinsie Samantha, of Southern Sparkle Nail Art, and I were assigned Bird of Paradise.  In case you need a reference, here is the image my twinsie and I used for inspiration.  And let me apologize up front, because my freehand skills are severely lacking!  So, today's manicure is my attempt at a Bird of Paradise flower, which also fulfills the Lacquer Legion prompt of Garden!


Because I don't have any nail art brushes, I had to use the thinnest paint brush I had...and I even trimmed another one down for the additional detail work.  I ended up deciding to leave the blue stem off, because I was afraid it would end up looking too cluttered because I couldn't get the line thin enough.   


The polishes I used for this mani are Covergirl Go-Go Mango (for the orange nails and the orange in the BoP); Sally Hansen Limestone (the stem); LA Colors Art Deco striper polishes in Hi-Lite and Bright Green to add some accents to the flowers.  I ended up going a little crazy with the yellow as I was polishing in low light and didn't realize HOW MUCH yellow I was using.  I also used OPI My Vampire is Buff as the base for the nail art.




Hopefully this mani wasn't too painful to look at!  I'm definitely pleased with how it turned out...I seriously expected it to be 1000 times worse, but I know that certainly isn't gorgeous!  I really like how the BoP on my thumb turned out.  It's a lot more crisp looking than the one on my ring finger, so I wanted to be sure to get a macro of it!  Overall, this challenge definitely took me outside my comfort zone, and I'm actually ok with the results!  Be sure to check out Samantha's Bird of Paradise mani here!  Also, search #LLgarden on your favorite social media sites to see other garden themed manis!

--
Sarah

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

#HePicksMyPolish - May 2014

Today I have another installment of #HePicksMyPolish!  This month, my boyfriend picked polishes that went together a little bit better than those he picked for me in April.  To see what I did in April, be sure to check out my post here.  This month he picked Julep Misti, Covergirl Peaches & Cream, and Hot Topic Blood.  They don't sound like they go together well, but luckily they went together well enough!



It took me forever to come up with an idea of what to do for this manicure.  I had considered striping tape, gradients, and colorblocking before finally coming across this mani by Kelsie's Nail Files, on Pinterest.  I loved this design because it used a stamp I actually had!  It's from the Salon Express plate SE-20.  It's also the first image I ever attempted stamping with!


Before stamping directly on my nails, I test out Misti and Blood to see if they would work for stamping at all.  I was very excited to see how well each stamped and I immediately knew this was the mani I would do.  I definitely plan to keep Blood in mind for future stamping.  Even though it isn't opaque in one coat on it's own, it is an extremely saturated color, which is great for stamping!


I started out with a base of Peaches & Cream, then stamped using Misti, Konad Special White, and Blood.



Overall, I am so pleased with how this mani turned out!  These DEFINITELY were not colors I would have ever put together, but I love the end result.  If I was to do this again, I would consider painting my nails a neutral color and then include Peaches & Cream in the stamping (though I did not test how "stampable" P&C was).  I also love that this looks like fireworks from far away!  So I might be recreating this in red, white and blue in a few months!  I hope everyone had a nice Memorial Day weekend, and always remember what the holiday is really about - honoring those who sacrificed for our country.

--
Sarah 

Friday, May 23, 2014

Nicole by OPI Roughles - Sand in My Shoe

Today, I've got Sand in My Shoe, the third of four polishes from Nicole by OPI's Roughles collection, which was released earlier this Spring.  I have previously reviewed On What Grounds? and Rock the Look.


Sand in My Shoe is a creamy banana yellow shade with flecks of reddish-orange throughout.  Sand in My Shoe had similar formula to Rock the Look, very creamy and easy to apply.  It dried to a creamy finish and not did not have a chalky look to it.  The wear time for this polish was great as well!  I wore it for three days and only had minimal tip wear.





I am typically not a fan of yellow polish - but I absolutely love this shade!  It's so different, and you don't have to deal with the awful formula that typically goes hand-in-hand with regular yellow polishes.  This is definitely a shade I will be re-wearing this summer!  I hope every has a great and safe Memorial Day Weekend!  I want to go to the beach and get some sand in my shoes (see what I did there?), but my boyfriend doesn't want to brave the crowd!

--
Sarah

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

FingerFood's Theme Buffet Week 20 - Galaxy Nails

This week's prompt for FingerFood's Theme Buffet is galaxies!  It's been a little over a year since I attempted galaxy nail art the first time, but I am loving the nails I did for this challenge!  For a point of reference here is a link to my galaxy nails I did for the February Nail Art Challenge in February 2013.


I used a TON of polishes for this mani, here they are in no particular order: Zoya Storm and Demi, Sally Hansen White Tip and Spectrum, Revlon Provence, Nicole By OPI Tink's in the Pink, and an unnamed glitter topper from Sally Hansen.  I believe this polish came out with the Fall 2013 Xtreme Wear Rent the Runway collection, but it did not have a label on it and I've not been able to find a swatch.  It's a clear based polish with large silver hex glitters, smaller metallic teal hex glitters, matte black microglitter, and small black bar glitter.

UPDATE: The Sally Hansen glitter polish in question is Sea-ly String. (Source)



After two coats of Storm, I sponged on a little bit of white in random places on each nail.  I then added the two purple shades and Spectrum over top each white.  You can see Spectrum in the picture above.  A bit of the color did show on the nail, but the best part was the blue shimmer that is visible in a few of the shots I took.  This was absolutely gorgeous in the sun!  Once all those colors dried I added one coat of the unnamed glitter polish.  I didn't want any of the larger silver pieces, so I was careful not to apply any.


Look at that shimmer!


I really love the blue shimmer that Spectrum added to this mani.  And of course, who doesn't love the scattered holo of Storm!  The glitter topper also added a bit of dimension in my opinion, allowing it to look like stars, planets, or other astro junk floating around out there!  I definitely think the thumb is my favorite nail, but I really like how they all look together.  This has definitely been one of the most fun manicures I've done in awhile!  Be sure to check out the other galaxy manicures below!

--
Sarah

Monday, May 19, 2014

Jindie Nails - Femme Fire

Today I have Femme Fire, a beautiful glitter-packed crelly by Jindie Nails.  I won a giveaway earlier this year, where I was able to pick out four Jindie Nails polishes of my choice!  You can see the four I picked out (and a swatch of Check the Candy) here.  Femme Fire is one of Jen's very early polishes, if I remember correctly.  I've been following Jindie Nails' progress for almost two years, and purchased from her in 2012 - one of my favorite polishes Chomp Chomp.  Unfortunately, Chomp Chomp and other sports team-themed polishes from that time period are no longer available, but I always encourage you to check out what she has for sale currently!


Femme Fire is a bubblegum pink crelly polish full of red, orange, and yellow hex glitter in varying sizes.  There was absolutely no fishing at all for the larger glitters.  This polish has sat since about January without being moved - I held it upside down for 5-10 minutes prior to polishing, and I had absolutely no problem getting any of the glitter out.  This was three coats, only because it was slightly patchy in a few spots and I wanted to eliminate any visible nail line.  There is seriously crazy amounts of glitter in this polish!



I wore this polish for three days!  I still had only minimal tip wear, and only one chip by the time I took it off!  This photos were after day two, which is why there is tip wear on my index and middle fingers.  I love this color, and it's definitely a great Spring-Summer transition polish...especially considering it already feels like Summer here in Florida!  My six year old cousin loved this polish as well and has asked me to paint her nails with "the polka dot polish" when she visits this summer. :)



I absolutely adore all of Jen's polishes that I've tried.  They all have fantastic formulas with great glitter payout.  Be sure to check out jindienails.com to check her current inventory.  And here is a direct link to Femme Fire!  I'll be back on Wednesday with my galaxy nails - I can't wait to share them with you!

--
Sarah

Saturday, May 17, 2014

FingerFood's Theme Buffet Week 19 - For Scarlett

Today's post will also be another quick one.  This week's prompt for FingerFood's Theme Buffet was "For Scarlett."  Scarlett is Sam's (of FingerFood) daughter who turned eight this week!  Happy Birthday Scarlett and I hope you've enjoyed a week full of manis just for you!


I recently picked up a small nail art wheel consisting of 3D bow nail accents, and decided to build a mani around my favorite bow!  I decided to mimic and pink the black polka dots on the bow on each nail, with an inverse of the colors for the accent nails.  To add another feature to the mani, I decided to use textured polish!



The polishes I used for this mani were Cotton Candies and Lick-O-Rich from the Sally Hansen Sugar Coat collection that came out this time last year.



Overall, I LOVE how this turned out and I hope Scarlett does too!  While the 3D accent is always the most functional, I love how it adds a little something to a simple dotticure.  Hope everyone has a good rest of their weekend!

--
Sarah

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Mint and Purple Polished Obsession Contest

Hello!  Today I'm bringing you a fun laser mani that is my submission for the Mint and Purple Polished Obsession Contest hosted by Refined and Polished and Polish Obsession.  Here is a quick synopsis of the rules from Refined and Polished's page:
The contest details are pretty simple; all you need to do is create your own mint and purple mani. You are free to use any brands as well as other accent colors such as white, gold, or silver, but the majority of the look must be mint and purple. After you create your look, post it on Instagram using the following tags: @marijonails, @refinedandpolished, #mintandpurplepolishedobsession. If you’d like to participate but don’t have an Instagram, feel free to email your photo to refinedandpolished@gmail.com or share it with us on our Facebook or Twitter pages.
Entries will be accepted until May 18, 2014 at 12a EST. Due to nail polish mailing restrictions, this contest is open to those with US mailing addresses, ages 18 and up. A winner will be selected at random from all of the entries.  The random winner of the nail art contest will receive the entire Zoya Awaken collection!
 For my mint and purple mani, I used Pure Ice Home Run and Avon Bon Voyage Violet.


I started with a single coat of Home Run (which I have previously used here and here).  Once dry, I added striping tape in random locations, doing one nail at a time. I then added one coat of Bon Voyage Violet and quickly removed the striping tape.  The difficult part was remembering what order layered the pieces of tape, because you could mess up the lines if you pulled them off in the wrong order (see pinkie finger).


Bon Voyage Violet has a great one-coater formula and does dry really fast!  Avon claims 30 seconds, and while I didn't time it, it was already very tacky by the time I starting pulling off the tape.  Which is also why there are little stringys that went across some of the mint lines.




My favorite nails would probably be my thumb and middle finger.  I love how random the patterns are.  My goal was to have each nail different, but otherwise I just kind of plopped tape down where it looked good.   If you decide to do a mint and purple mani, be sure to share on social media using the hashtag #mintandpurplepolishedobsession!

--
Sarah

Monday, May 12, 2014

Mother's Day Nails

Hello!  Today's post will be from the vault!  These are actually the nails I did for Mother's Day 2013, but I could never decide if I was actually satisfied with the way they turned out.  And while my stamping has drastically improved in the last year, overall these nails aren't too bad!



I don't recall what white polish I used for the french tips, but the pink is Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Shrimply Devine and the red is Revlon Revlon Red.  And no, that's not a stutter, the red is actually named "Revlon Red."



After free handing the french tips, I then added the alternating pink and red dots with my dotting tool.  For my accent nail, I stamped the heart image and then added the dots on either side.  Unfortunately, the previous time I had used this image, the plate wasn't cleaned completely...so you can see the black/dark color that had been stamped with previously.  I tried to salvage it, and it doesn't look completely awful!




Once all the dots and stamped image dried I applied a coat of NYC Matte Me Crazy matte topcoat.  Overall, I love the look of this mani, I just wish the execution had been a bit better.  It would be kinda fun to recreate it a year later and see what kind of improvement may or may not have happened.  I hope all the moms out there had a lovely Mother's Day and weekend.  I went to visit my mother and grandmother in Orlando and went out to lunch with my extended family.

--
Sarah

Friday, May 9, 2014

Nicole by OPI Roughles - Rock the Look

Yes, I'm back with Rock the Look sooner than I expected!  I had kind of a lazy week with nail art and only prepared the manis for upcoming challenges next week, and didn't really do any just for the heck of it.  I wore Rock the Look last week.  And as you can see, I'm no longer wearing the false nails.  You may have noticed it before, since some of the manis I have posted have had the falsies and some were my real nails.  But I have now posted all manis done while wearing the falsies, so it's back to being my real nails now!


Even though On What Grounds? was my favorite polish from the Roughles Collection, prior to owning it, so far I really think Rock the Look is my favorite between the two. Where On What Grounds? had a bit of a chalky finish to it, I really feel like Rock the Look was much more creamy and textured.  I definitely think I'm a bigger fan of the creme/matte textured polishes instead of the glitter/sparkly variety.



Both these polishes have great wear time and I love the speckled look they have, which is so different from the other textured polishes out there right now.  This is two coats of Rock the Look, with base coat and no top coat.  Rock the Look is a pastel pink with red and black flecks in it. 







Overall, I love all of the Roughles polishes I have tried out so far, and am so glad I found the entire collection.  Speaking of - I know I mentioned the Kmart I purchased them was sold out the last time I was in there, well a CVS on the opposite side of town that I rarely go in, had a full display when I was in there Wednesday.  So they do still exist out there - and if anyone wants me to pick them up, give me a holler!  Anywho, now that I've interrupted my own blog post, I hope everyone has a great weekend and I want to wish all the mothers out there, especially my own, a Happy Mother's Day!

--
Sarah
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