Thursday, December 27, 2012

Zoya Sharon

Zoya Sharon is the base for my my first gradient I did a few days back and just an absolutely gorgeous color. I really wanted a bright happy color to cheer me up with all these dreary days it it worked perfectly. It is so tropical and warm looking it reminds me of being in Florida. Sharon is a medium yellow toned orange that is bright enough that it doesn't come across pumpkiny at all. Application was pretty good but it did need three coats to be opaque. Formula wise this was also really good not to runny or goopy so I would definitely use this one again.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

My First Gradient

Today I have for you my very first gradient ever. I absolutely love gradient manis but I have always been too afraid to try one myself. I just don't understand how people get them so perfect! I definitely need a lot of practice but at least with these results I want to try again instead of give up. For my first time I am pretty happy with the results and it was a fun learning experience. For this look I started with three coats of Zoya Sharon as a base and then sponged on several layer of Cult Nails Feel Me Up. For the stamping I used Bundle Monster plate 318. For top coat I used Cult Nails Wicked Fast. I don't think this is the best to use with stamping because it smeared my index and middle finger. With the other two I was super gentle trying not to ruin them too. This is my first time using Wicked Fast with stamping so maybe I just need to be more gentle or wait even longer before I top coat even though I waited close to five minutes. I am still super happy with this look though and the smudges are barely even noticeable in person the camera just captures everything!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Butter London Fishwife

Today I have Butter London's Fishwife which is a light dusty blue holographic polish. It is a scattered holo which I actually prefer over a linear holo. It is like the whole nail is alive instead of just that big line that freaks out my camera. It reminds me a lot of Butter London's Victoriana except for it is the holographic version. Fishwife starts off really sheer but builds up to opaqueness after three coats. To be on the safe side I added a fourth coat because I wanted to make sure I didn't have any VNL. I'm not used to my nails being long like this so I just wanted to take extra precautions. The formula was great to work with not too thick or thin and dry time was quick as it is with most holographic polishes. Photos shown below are four coats of Fishwife without top coat.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Zoya Reagan and Lara Stamping

Lately I have been really obsessed with pictures of stamping that show two colors together that are so close to each other but contrast perfectly for an effect that is just stunning. I never had a clue how they came up with the combinations and hadn't yet tried it but then a combination finally hit me. I was organizing my polishes today and came across the Zoya Beach collection that was actually still in the plastic box it came in. Lara and Reagan were sitting right next to each other and I thought they would make the perfect first attempt at the effect I was wanting. I absolutely love how the combination turned out and can't wait to try out more color combinations now that I think I've got it.

For this I used two coats of Zoya Lara and then added a coat of Cult Nails Wicked Fast. I then stamped using Zoya Reagan and Cheeky plate CH6. Reagan was so easy to use for stamping and came out great on the first try.  I finished it all off with a coat of Seche Vite and am just amazed. I really really love this combination!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Challenge Day 7 - Snowman

Ok so I'm not even going to lie today I am cheating and using a design I came up with last year but I have two very good excuses. Okay, well one excuse and one reason. My excuse is that I just tried Color Club's Holiday Splendor for the first time and less than 24 hours is just not enough time to spend wearing this amazingness! And my reason is that this snowman mani was one of my first two attempts at nail art. I have always been addicted to nail polish but never even thought to try nail art til last December so these nails will always be really special to me because of that. They may not be the best but I was super happy with them and still am to this day.

For the mani I used Zoya Noel for my base color and then added Essie Shine of the Times over it to create a glistening snow effect. This was indoors but outside in the sun I just loved the way it sparkled just like new fallen snow. I will never be able to remember the colors used for my little snowmen so we will just skip that and get to the picture.

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Thursday, December 13, 2012

Comparison: Julep, Sinful Colors & Wet n Wild

One of my favorite Sinful Colors polishes is Nail Junkie. For one it definitely accurately describes me and for another it is just soo pretty! It's a dark green jelly type polish with lots of green and copper glitter to make it have that glass flecked effect. Then when I bought some of the new Wet n Wild winter polishes I realized that Happy Holidaze! looked a lot like Nail Junkie. Actually I found a sinful colors dupe, well at least going off the appearance in the bottle, to all the Wet n Wild holiday colors I picked up which I will probably do a comparison post on at some point. Then I get my Julep maven box that I upgraded and Harper appears to be another dupe to both of them. Now it's a beautiful color but I don't exactly need that many of it so I wanted to see if they are really dupes of each other and if anyone else but the crazy nail junkie needs them all.

Here is a shot of them in their bottles and from here they pretty much all look identical to each other.

They are all very similar with the green base and the glitter composition but there are no actual dupes here just a very slight variation on a theme. The glitter is about the same in all of them but what makes them different is the base.

For the first coat Julep had the lightest most sheer base and also the least amount of glitter, Sinful had the darkest base color, and Wet n Wild was about the same as Juleps for the base color but had the densest amount of glitter. After two coats Julep and Wet n Wild look the most alike still sheer base but the glitter is almost the same. Sinful colors is almost opaque at two coats.

After three coats it's like Goldilocks and the three polishes: Julep is still just too sheer and thin, Wet n Wild is so dense with glitter it is goopy but still not quite opaque, and Sinful Colors is just right with complete opaqueness and amazing glitter! In pictures the visible nail line can be seen on Nail Junkie but it is not visible in person.

So they are all similar but just a little bit different. Julep is at the bottom of my list because at $14 a bottle it should be so much better but I can get the same effect seen in the bottle from Sinful for only $2. Sinful is definitely the best of the three for coverage and price. The pictures below are shown with three coats of each polish and topped with HK Girl topcoat.

From left to right: Julep Harper, Sinful Color Nail Junkie, & Wet n Wild Happy Holidaze!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Challenge Day 6 - Christmas Trees

For today's challenge I started out with three coats of Finger Paints Elves Bells. I just got this color today and like many other polishes I am in love. I was glued to this color as soon as I picked it up at Sally's today. I have never been a huge fan of gold so I was surprised it was the one color I picked from the display. The green and red spots were made using Zoya Logan and Blaze. On my ring finger I used Zoya Logan to create the tree and then used Maybelline Bold Gold and Nfu-Oh 61 to create a garland on the tree. Using rhinestones I added a star to top the tree off and tiny little ornaments.

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Day 5 Reindeer

Another day I wasn't super happy with but I did try so it's only fair to show the end result :)

Challenge Day 4 Bells

I wasn't super happy with how these turned out but I decided I am going to post them anyways. Not all nail art is perfect or turns out how it is in your head but I am still proud of my effort and giving it a shot.

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Thursday, December 6, 2012

Day 3 - Snowflakes

Snowflakes are so pretty and unique and just beautiful but getting them on the nails seemed like a really hard task for me. I had so many ideas floating around my head but finally settled on  a jelly sandwich with stamping. I started off with a glue basecoat so I could easily remove the glitter and then put on one coat of Revlon's Calla Lily which is a sheer white jelly polish that shimmers like gleaming snow. It is very very sheer even for a jelly so after I added one coat of Juleps Vivien I added a coat of Sally Hansen's Polar Bare which is also a jelly but a more opaque white. That helped take care of how sheer it was and made the nail line a lot less visible. I added one more coat of Vivien and finished with one last coat of Calla Lily. I had to let it dry quite a long time before I could even think of doing stamping because it just would have destroyed the entire mani. For the stamping I used Maybelline Bold Gold which has got to be the best gold stamping polish ever! If you don't own this seriously go out and buy it now. I used Bundle Monster plate 323 for the snowflakes and it really just brought the whole thing together and I fell in love. I topped everything off with one coat of HK Girl.

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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Day 2 - Candy Canes

When I was little, well even now, my favorite type of candy cane were the blue raspberry ones. There is just something about a candy that turns your mouth bright blue so you can then turn to people and stick your tongue out at them while asking if it is blue :) So for candy canes I knew I wanted to do blue ones but then I started thinking about the multi-colored packs ant thought that would be really fun so for today's theme I have four different flavors/color combinations of candy canes. For all of the nails I used stamping using Cheeky plate CH11.

Polishes Used:
Blue Raspberry: Revlon Coastal Surf for base & Julep Eloise stamped
Grape: Sally Hansen Good to Grape base & Sally Hansen Insta-Dry Lively Lilac stamped
Peppermint: OPI Thanks So Muchness base & Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Whirlwind White stamped
Cinnamon: Wet n Wild Candy-licious base & Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Rapid Red stamped

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Sunday, December 2, 2012

Challenge Day 1: Red & Green

Today is the first day of the challenge and that would red and green day! I was having a hard time feeling Christmas-y until I started my nails. Somehow the red and green really does something to put your head in the frame of mind of Christmas and now I'm all excited! I wanted to keep it kind of simple but of course it needed a little bit of extra pizazz so I through in some red and green rhinestones. For this mani I started out with two coats of Essie Blanc and then one coat of OPI Kyoto Pearl. I then added some stamping with Maybelline Bold Gold using Bundle Monster plate 322. I decided to use my index finger as my accent today so that is where I through the red and green rhinestones and I just love how the 3D effect turned out. It looks a lot better in person than it came across in the pictures. For the rest of the nails I filled in the circles with red and green using Zoya Logan and Blaze.

I am super excited for this challenge and am loving what everyone else has come up with so make sure to check them out too! 

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