Friday, July 31, 2015

#WNAC2015 - Negative Space Gradient

Happy Friday!  Today's post is going to be a short one.  I have the final #WNAC2015 prompt for July - negative space gradient.  I've only ever done one negative space design before, so I really had to think outside the box on this one.  I like how negative space manis look on other people, but I didn't think I would like them on myself, but I actually really like how this one turned out.

I started by applying Nails Redesigned triangle vinyls to each nail to create an elongated v-shaped half moon type design and Sassy Cats Lacquer Kitty Kaps latex shield around my cuticles.  I then sponged on a gradient of Sally Hansen Pink Blink and Nails Inc. Chelsea Physic Garden onto each nail.  I then finished with a coat of Seche Vite.

Though it took several coats and isn't perfectly opaque, I quite like how this turned out.  Next time I would use colors that were more opaque and didn't take so many coats to build up opacity.  But I do really like how delicate looking this is.  In real life, its actually quite a bit more subtle than in these photos.  It's such an elegant color combination and I really love how this turned out.  Hope everyone has a great weekend!


Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Parallax Polish Bryant and Destiny

Happy Hump Day!  It's been quite awhile since I've brought you any swatches!  Today I have a new to me indie, Parallax Polish!  Parallax Polish first showed up on my radar when she announced the SeCience Collection a few months ago.  Each polish in the collection represents a different SEC school and is inspired by current academic research at each major university.  So, being the loyal Gator fan and UF employee that I am, I automatically needed Bryant, the polish inspired by the University of Florida.

Bryant is named for the space center here on campus (I've actually never been there!).  Bryant is described as a deep blue with orange shimmer, which of course is appropriate since our colors are orange and blue.  I tried to capture the shimmer in my photos, but it was rather elusive of my camera, but very noticeable in real life.  This polish is super gorgeous!  The VNL also was not as noticeable in real life as it is in these pictures.  The first coat was a bit streaky, but it finished off nicely in three coats.

Next up is Destiny from the Discoveries in Diagnoses collection.  This collection was designed to bring awareness to lesser-known medical conditions in order to better educate.  This gorgeous scattered holo is bringing awareness to congenital heart defects.  Destiny is described as a blue scattered holographic with a slight red shimmer.  I didn't necessarily see red shimmer, but I do feel there was a slight duochrome effect in some lighting (which I unfortunately was unable to capture).

The formula on Destiny was absolute perfection.  It dried to a slightly matte textured finish, but I smoothed it out with a coat of Seche Vite.  I actually quite liked the texture and may wear it that way in the future.

Both of these polishes are absolutely gorgeous and I'm so glad I was able to pick them up.  Both are currently in stock on the Parallax Polish store, so be sure to grab them!  I also recommend following Parallax Polish on Instagram.  With each polish swatch an informational tidbit is posted for each of the SeCience and Discoveries in Diagnoses polishes.  I love that she uses social media as a platform to bring awareness and inform!


Friday, July 24, 2015

#WNAC2015 Scaled Gradient

Happy Friday!  Today's post is this week's prompt for #WNAC2015: scaled gradient.  I definitely had to google what a scaled gradient was!  I have seen these on Instagram, but had not ever considered doing one!  I will start off by saying that I am not a big fan of the way my mani came out.  I like the index nail, and that is about it. 

For this mani, I started with a base of Revlon Provence.  I then created a gradient using Provence and Zoya Demi.  Once dry, I added chevron nail vinyls from Nails Redesigned vertically across the nail.  I then created an inverse gradient of the two colors, sponging them on in the opposite direction than I had for the base.  This would've worked great if I had picked a more opaque polish than Provence.  Since it was sheer, it was hard to cover over Demi on the bottom.

Overall, this technique is not hard to accomplish, as long as you are smart when picking polishes.  I do really like some of the scaled gradient manis I have seen (just search #WNAC2015 on Instagram).  I will just have to practice in the future, so that it comes out a bit better.  Hope everyone has a great weekend!


Friday, July 17, 2015

#WNAC2015 Geometric Gradient

Happy Friday!  Sorry I didn't have another post up earlier this week...I've been a bit busy with our new kitten Curie!  I will include a picture of her down at the bottom.  She is a sweetie, but getting her and my other cat, Addy, to get along has been a long process.  So not much time for blogging!  I also had a bad break on my middle finger nail as you can see in these pictures.  I couldn't bring myself to file the other nails down because they really aren't very long at the moment!

Today, I have this week's #WNAC2015 prompt, geometric gradient.  I decided to do a laser type mani for this with a gradient.  I've done a few laser manis before, but never one with a gradient.  I was also feeling some bright summery colors, so I used Zoya Kimber and Myrta for the gradient.

For this mani, I started with a base of OPI My Vampire is Buff.  After two coats and topcoat, I used striping tape to create the design on each nail.  My goal was to make each nail as different as possible.  I then used Sassy Cats Lacquer Kitty Kaps (my liquid latex holy grail product!) to line each nail before beginning the gradient.  I then sponged on Kimber and Myrta, removed the tape, and topcoated.

If you are looking for a liquid latex product I highly recommend Kitty Kaps.  I actually received it as a freebie in an order I placed a few months ago since there was a widespread shipping delay.  Well, I have nothing but good things to say and will definitely be reordering when I run out.  I have only tried one other liquid latex product and it simply does not perform as well as Kitty Kaps.  Kitty Kaps dries quickly and peels off in one large piece and is not super sticky!  It comes in a mini-sized polish bottle, which is perfect for application in my opinion.  I actually used Kitty Kaps on my last gradient mani as well, but forgot to mention it.

Anywho, here is my sassy baby cat, Curie.  She has been a handful, but is super sweet and full of energy!  This picture was actually taken about two weeks before we brought her home.  Hope everyone has a great weekend!


Friday, July 10, 2015

#WNAC2015 Leopard Print Gradient

Happy Friday!  Today is an especially special Friday because I am going to pick up my new kitten this evening!  I'm still a little nervous about how my current cat is going to react to having a baby sister, but here's hoping everything will work out.  Be sure to check my Instagram, as I'm sure I'll be posting pictures!

Today's prompt for #WNAC2015 is animal print.  Since I am most comfortable with leopard print, I decided to do leopard print over a gradient.  I went to Ulta last weekend and picked up a few polishes (I really only went in for Seche Vite, but you know how that goes!).  I picked up several new to me polishes, including the two used in this post: Zoya Tove and Orly Teal Unreal.

I started with a base of Tove, a light dove gray from the Satin finish line from earlier this year.  I then created a gradient using Tove and Teal Unreal.  Once dry, I topcoated and then used acrylic paint to add my leopard print.  I then finished everything off with another coat of Seche Vite.

Even though I just did a leopard print mani for a prompt in June, but I am really working to perfect this technique.  I've seen so many gorgeous leopard prints, and I want to get there!  Hope everyone has a great weekend!


Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Patriotic Glitter Placement Nails

I'm so excited to share today's mani with you.  These are the nails that I did for July 4th and the Women's World Cup game.  Which in case you've been under a rock the last three days, the USA won the world cup!  It was a great game, and we were up by 4 very early in the first half.  I'm pretty sure it was the highest scoring soccer match I've ever seen.  Either way, we won and it was great!

I had trouble trying to decide what to do for my patriotic nails this year.  I have this great red, white, and blue matte glitter topper that I used last year, however, I knew I didn't just want to layer glitter over top of a base color.  So I decided to a glitter placement mani - and what better than red, white, and blue stripes!

Since I wanted a neutral color as my base so that you could see each color of glitter, I started with Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Pumping Iron.  After two coats and topcoat, I then started creating my stripes using Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear Beach Ball.  In hindsight, I wish my lines were a little straighter on some nails, but overall I loved the effect.  I even did my right hand, but of course the lines were even less straight then! ;)

Overall, this was such a fun mani, and perfect for the holiday weekend events.  Even though I thought this mani up in my own head (though I'm sure someone else has done something similar), I feel like this is me thinking outside the box and pushing my personal envelope just a little bit more.  I hope everyone had a safe and happy fourth!


Friday, July 3, 2015

#WNAC2015 Dry Brush Gradient

Happy Friday!  This is an especially happy Friday considering I have the day off!  UF is observing Independence Day today, so I get a three day weekend!  We are getting ready to have a big cookout and then watch the Women's World Cup and the Coke Zero 400 on Sunday night!  Can you tell we're big sports fans?

Today I have the first #WNAC2015 prompt for July.  This month's theme is gradients, and this week's them is dry brush.  I've never done a dry brush mani before, so I was excited to try out a new technique.  That's one thing I really like about these challenges, it forces me to go outside my box a little!

For this mani, I started with a base of OPI My Vampire is Buff.  Then using the dry brush technique (you brush off as much of the polish off the brush as possible), I applied three shades of pink.  I've been in a pink mood lately, so I chose that as my color scheme for this mani.  The three polishes I used are LA Colors Color Craze Frill, a pastel pink unnamed Color Craze shade, and Sephora by OPI What Aura Gonna Wear?

I then finished it off with a coat China Glaze Fairy Dust.  In hindsight, I wish I hadn't added the Faity Dust, because I feel like it took away from the dry brush look, and made it look kind of lumpy, which it definitely wasn't.  This technique is super easy and it drys fast since you're using so little polish.  Great for nail art on the go!  Hope everyone has a great Fourth of July weekend and Go USA!

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