Saturday, December 31, 2011

My top 10 for 2011 (part two)

Hi loves! The last day of 2011 and I'm posting my top 5 for the year. Don't forget that these are my personal favorites and they include polishes that were not released in 2011. Also, clicking the pictures will link you to the corresponding post. Hope you have fun reading this! 

5. Eyeko Vintage

I enjoyed wearing this jade green all spring and summer long. It was actually a staple color for me and I was also very impressed with its wear time. 

4. Nubar 2010

Only a recent purchase, but it's still very high in my list. I was wishing for flakies for a long time and I knew I would love them. Of course, I was totally right!

3. China Glaze First Mate 

The perfect blue creme for me! In this picture it has ELF Twinkle on top, but I've also enjoyed wearing it on its own. It's a good base for nail art also. 

2. Essie School of Hard Rocks

I love love love this polish! Such a unique and gorgeous shade of teal. I have never seen anything like it and the Essie formula is also great. The perfect winter shade! 

1. Revlon Facets of Fuchsia

My obsession for almost a month, this polish is so gorgeous that nothing can compare to it. I'm so glad I have this and I think it's my favorite polish at the moment. 

So this is my little list. You can comment below if you have any questions/additions/objections. This is also my last post for 2011. I want to wish you all a happy new year! I hope 2012 will be the best year ever for all of you! And I hope to talk to you soon in 2012! 

Happy New Year!

Friday, December 30, 2011

My top 10 for 2011 (part one)

Hello my beautiful readers! When you will be reading this I will already be away on my new year's trip. But don't worry! I've scheduled a couple of posts to keep you entertained while I'm gone. Since there are only 2 says left of this year, I thought of doing a little list of my favorite polishes for 2011. This blog is only less than 4 months old, but I've been wearing polish all year round. This is not a top of 2011 releases. Some of these are older polishes that I've enjoyed wearing this year. If you click the pictures it will open the corresponding post. So let's get started! 

10. OPI Gone Gonzo! 

This came out in the Muppets collection this year and it was the polish I chose to wear for my birthday. So I could not leave it out of this list. The aqua glitter is truly amazing! 

9. China Glaze Blue Year's Eve 

Another winter polish from this year, a glass fleck that is every glass fleck lover's dream. And of course every blue lover's dream also. I instantly fell in love with it and I sure will be wearing it again this winter. 

8. China Glaze Glittering Garland 

A true stunner! It was really hard to chose an order for this one and Blue Year's Eve, since I equally love them and they have a special place in my heart. The shimmer in this green polish is so gorgeous that it makes me wanna wear it all the time. Also a perfect holiday shade. 

7. Essie Coat Azure 

With this one we go way back into the summer, when I wore it a lot. I didn't have a proper swatch picture of it so this is a nail art that has it as a base color. Every time I look at these pictures it makes me wonder why I don't wear this blue all the time. A special mention also goes to Smooth Sailing, another of Essie's gorgeous blues from this summer's collection. 

6. Eveline Holografic Shine 405

I really hit gold with this one! A true holo at such a low price and good staying power too. I'm impressed by this brand and would love to try more!

So that's it for the first part of my list. Tomorrow I will post my top 5 polishes for 2011 so don't miss them!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Rimmel Black Cherries and Nubar 2010

Hello loves! 3 more days left of 2011 and then 2012 is gonna march in. Hope next year will be much better than this one. One sure thing is that it's gonna be full of nail polish! Today I have a very special manicure to show you. I have received so many compliments for this one and I've really enjoyed wearing it. 

I've started with two coats of Rimmel I love lasting finish Black Cherries. The color of this polish is somewhere between dark red and purple, I think it's best described as a wine color. It has a hidden shimmer that is unfortunately more obvious in the bottle. On the nail it is visible only in bright light. The problem with this was its thickness. It could use quite a bit of thinner (but I don't have any at the moment). So the 2 coats I ended up applying where quite thick and a lot of bubbles showed up after it dried. I don't have good pictures of it alone and I wasn't gonna show you the bubbles, so this is the best I could do. 

Rimmel Black Cherries, no top coat, natural light (sorry for the reflection) 
Afterwards I applied one coat of Nubar 2010 and a glossy top coat. I applied the Nubar a little thicker to have more flakies on the nail, but the base color still shines trough. I think that the combo is just perfect. It really makes the gold-copper color of the flakies pop. Here's some picture spam for you. 

in the sun

still in the sun
artificial light, I tried to capture the color shift of the flakies
After wearing it like this for a day, I added a coat of Color Club Matte-ified. I really loved it matte and just can't decide if I like this combo better matte or glossy. The flakies almost looked red in some lights after I made them matte. 

artificial light (no sun that day, sorry) 
I love Nubar 2010 and I think I'm gonna wear it a lot in 2012 too. Stay tuned for a best of 2011 post! 

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas gifts and a small haul

Hey everybody! I wasn't sure if I should do this post or not, but I like seeing this kind of posts on people's blogs and I thought maybe some of you would like to see one here too. So let's start with what I got for Christmas from my family. 

  • "Rich man, poor man" by  Irwin Shaw. I love reading so people usually get me books for Christmas or my birthday. This is a great novel. I'm already more than half trough the first volume and I love it. 
  • Garnier Essentials moisturising day cream for normal skin. This is not a very fancy skincare product, but I like to use it, especially in the winter (it gets a little greasy in the summer). 
  • Rimmel I love lasting finish in Black Cherries. A lovely dark red-purple polish with a hidden shimmer. 
  • Fa NutriSkin Moisturising Body Lotion. A new addition to my very vast collection of body milks and butters. We'll see how this works out. 

Carolina Herrera 212 On Ice. I love how this smells and my bf was nice enough to give it to me for Christmas. I'm not big on perfumes, but I pretty much like floral and fresh scents. 

This sweater was a gift from my parents. I love it because it's long and comfy, but still has a nice and elegant neck line. It actually looks much better on me than it does in this picture (I'm really modest, I know). The picture is from the website because I didn't get to photograph it and now it's already in the washer. 

These boots are a gift I made to myself for Christmas. I love them so much! They are exactly how I pictured them to be and I'm so glad I've found them. 

Finally, we don't have any boxing day or day after Christmas sales over here, but I still went to do a little shopping at my favorite drugstore yesterday and got a few things. 

  • Rimmel Lycra Pro My Denim. They are having a 50% off sale for these polishes and I couldn't resist getting one. Sadly, most of the shades are pinks and such. They also have an army green that is pretty nice and something that looks like a Chanel Paradoxal dupe in the bottle. I was lucky enough to find this gorgeous jeans type blue. I have nothing like it in my collection and since I love blues I had to get it. 
  • Balea Straight+Shine Conditioner. I already use the shampoo from this line and I love it. Lately, I've been having trouble detangling my hair after I wash it. It has gotten so long. Hope this will help with that. 
  • Balea Fresh Grapefruit and Alverde Calendula lip balms. I really like the lip balms they have at DM and I couldn't chose between the two, so I got them both. 
  • Ebelin large size cotton pads. These are an awesome invention! They are twice the size of regular cotton pads and will be great for polish removal. I usually use 2-3 of the regular ones to remove a manicure so I'm curious if one of the big ones is enough. 

That's it. I hope you enjoyed seeing my gifts and purchases. If you have any questions about the products, please post them in the comment section.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

China Glaze Ring in the Red

Hello lovelies! Hope you had a wonderful Christmas and although it has passed, I know a lot of you are still on holiday, so that's still great. Today I have for you the last of the China Glaze Let it Snow collection swatches. This was my Christmas manicure so that's why I'm posting it so late. 

China Glaze Ring in the Red, 2 coats over Nailed by Sleek in Geisha's Seal, artificial light 
Ring in the Red is a red glitter in a clear base. There are small glitter pieces along with some larger pieces, but the size is still pretty small making it a very subtle glitter that can be worn by anybody. All in all, this is pretty sheer. I think it would take around 4 coats to make it opaque, so I decided to layer it over a red base. 

I didn't have a good red in my collection so I purchased the base color (Nailed by Sleek in Geisha's Seal) to use for Christmas manicures this year. I was hoping for this red to be more cool toned, but it's still pretty warm so I wouldn't wear it on its own just because I think it doesn't go well with my skin tone. It's really hard to find a good red, in my opinion. These pictures came out a tad more orange than the mani was in reality. 

While I really loved how this combo looked on the nail, I didn't really like it on me. I just prefer cool toned colors and darker colors on my nails. 

I'm not sorry I got this because it's such a beautiful glitter and I'm sure I'm gonna use it for layering and nail art in the future. I'm still sorry I didn't get Twinkle Lights. That is my biggest regret for this collection. Here's a recap of the other Let it Snow polishes I've swatched and reviewed: 

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Fun Sunday: Merry Christmas!

Hello loves! Just a quick post today to wish you all a happy and peaceful Christmas. I have no doubt that this is a fun Sunday for everyone. Enjoy the holiday season and the moments you get to spend with your loved ones! 

This is a picture of the small tree from my room. Some of my stuffed animals live beside it, including my holiday penguin and my singing pig that has reindeer antlers for the season. I wanted to show you the big tree in the living room, but I couldn't get a good picture, so you'll have to settle for this one. 

To all my followers and the people that have been supporting this blog from the beginning, I want to give special thanks. I cherish each and every one of you! 

To all those reading this, may this season bring you the peace and rest that you deserve. Let it be a time of joy and happiness and let us forget all the sadness, even if it's just for a while. I leave you with one of my favorite Christmas songs (original version by the great Stevie Wonder). 

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Twas the night before Christmas

Hello my dears! It's Christmas Eve and tomorrow is Christmas! The most wonderful time of the year! Many of you are already with your families celebrating, some of you are putting the final touches to the wonderful meals, and everybody is waiting for Santa. In my country we celebrate Christmas Eve with a family dinner and open our presents on the night before Christmas. So what else could I post other than a manicure showing the peaceful, snowy night when everybody is expecting the arrival of Santa. 

To create this I've started with one coat of the amazing China Glaze First Mate. I then added a coat of INM Northern Lights to make a beautiful starry sky. I then sponged some white on the tips using a sponge tip applicator. The trees, snowman and house were drawn using a nail art brush and dotting tools. I used a variety of polishes (mostly China Glaze). The black and white are from Moyra. Finally I did some white dots with a toothpick and added a top coat. 

without top coat
again without top coat
after top coat
  I didn't do any drawing on my left hand (my dominant hand), so I only had the night sky with the snow at the tips. I really loved the look and I think it's perfect for beginners. Unfortunately, the top coat from Kallos smudged the white tip (even if it was already dry), so I've learned my lesson and used my trusty Out the Door for the hand with the drawings. 

If you are reading this before Christmas, let me wish you a happy and peaceful Christmas with your family and loved ones. Or as the poem says: 

"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night."

Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas stamping

Hello again! A few weeks ago I ordered some stuff from a store that was also selling these nail plates I've never seen before. After carefully looking at each one, I found one that had some winter and Christmas related designs on it. It is the M37 that can be found here, but I have purchased it from here. The plate works pretty well and the designs are cute, so I can't complain. Here's what I came up with using this plate. 

Again I must excuse myself because I'm fairly new with stamping and I'm still learning. I really like the combo of blue and silver and I wanted a silver stamping polish, so I picked up Rimmel I love lasting finish Your Majesty. It's a silver metallic color that has a pretty good pigmentation and works well for stamping. The base is OPI Yoga-Ta Get This Blue (previously reviewed here).

But let me tell you that after this experience, all I can say is: stamping is hard! It was much harder for me to get the design straight than it was when I did full nail designs. I had to redo several nails and by the time I had finished, I had silver shimmer all over my fingers. All in all, not a very fun experience. 

I also used my nail art brush to fill in some of the lines that were missing from the designs. The tree was the hardest to work with. The bells were much better. I'm still satisfied with how this turned out after all the fuss. I  also got some compliments for it, so I guess it's alright. I hope you enjoyed this manicure! Happy Holidays!

*Later edit: It seems that some of the designs on this plate are dupes for the Konad M12 plate, including the tree and the bells. That's good news because this plate is about 3$ (less than half of a Konad plate).

OPI Yoga-Ta Get This Blue!

Hello you lovely people! Two more days till Christmas! For a lot of people it's the busiest time of the year, but because I'm not in charge of cooking in my house, I'm pretty much free to do whatever I want. Just finished decorating the big tree today and that's it. Christmas may very well come! And some snow wouldn't hurt either. 

Today I want to show you the second of the polishes the lovely Boarbb sent me for my birthday. It's not a holiday color per se (it came out in the spring collection of 2008), but I did some holiday nail art to make it season appropriate. I will show you that later. But for now, let's take a look at this gorgeous polish! 

OPI Yoga-Ta Get This Blue!, 2 coats, no top coat, artificial light
This is a beautiful navy polish packed with light blue shimmer. This looks blue in any light, it will never look like you have black polish on. The shimmer comes out to play in the light and it can look almost turquoise sometimes. This is just the perfect navy polish and I can see why it's a classic owned by pretty much every nail polish aficionado. 

Application was flawless as usual with OPI polishes. It was opaque in two coats. I must say that I'm kinda beginning to like the ProWide brush. Now that my nails are longer I don't make a mess with it and I really like the rounded top that makes for a perfect cuticle line. This dries to a very shiny finish. All my photos are without any top coat! 

this is a direct light photo (no light box) so you can see the beautiful shimmer in all its glory 
another light box photo, look how shiny! 
 I really love this and I'm so thankful to Boarbb for gifting it to me! I'm also looking forward to trying this with a matte top coat. I think it would make a perfect suede finish! Stay tuned for some Christmas stamping using it as a base! 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Flormar 393 glitter

Hello again, folks! It's kinda hard to bring myself to write two posts in a day, but truth is I have so much to show you before Christmas that I really don't know how I'm gonna manage. And I haven't even done my  official xmas mani yet. This post is about a glitter from Flormar that I have layered over my previous China Glaze Holly-Day manicure. 

The reason I got this is because, in the bottle, it reminded me of China Glaze Twinkle Lights. Now of course this one is silver and the ChG is gold. But the multicolored glitter really seemed very christmassy to me. I'm really sorry I didn't purchase Twinkle Lights along with my other Let it Snow polishes, but this didn't kill my lemming at all. 

here's how the bottle looks
Well, you can see from this shot that there are red, blue and green glitter pieces along with the silver ones in there. You can also see on the top part of the bottle that the clear base is a lot more than necessary and the glitter sinks to the lower part of the bottle. When applying this it's very hard to get the glitter on the brush. You have to scoop with the brush and then you get a lot of base also. Wiping the brush will wipe the glitter off. All my photos are one coat. You can see that on some nails, the glitter is more sparse than on the others.

So overall I'm not very impressed with the formula and application of this glitter. I was also disappointed that the green and blue glitter pieces don't show up on the nail. What you are left with is a silver glitter with some red mixed in. 

I might try to use this in two coats on a different base color some other time. I was hoping this would be more of a holiday polish, but it  doesn't really give me that vibe. All in all, I'm not sorry that I have purchased this. For its price (about 2$) it still makes for a pretty decent layering glitter. What do you think?

Cute Christmas tutorial: Rudolph!

Hello lovely people! Can't believe I'm finally on holiday! I finally have time to get some rest after these crazy months. To see the other tutorials from this series go here and here. Today I'm posting the last tutorial from the series, the cutest, the funniest and the longest (sorry). This is however not very hard to do. Just follow the steps and you'll be done in no time. 

It's Rudolph the red nosed reindeer! And all his friends, because if you do the nose black instead of red you get Dancer, Prancer, Blitzen and so on. Let's get started! 

what you'll need for the Rudy design
Of course I've used my trusty thin nail art brush. You can also use a toothpick if you don't have a brush. Just remember that when you use a toothpick, you have to use a dotting motion instead of a dragging motion do do proper lines. The polishes I've used are Revlon Smoky Canvas (greige creme), S-he Stylezone 500 (taupe), Moyra 35 (black) and 3 (white) and Nailed by Sleek in Geisha's Seal (red).  You will also need a base and a top coat, as usual. 

Step 1: Paint your whole nail a nude color. It's not mandatory to use a base coat because this does not stain, but it's still recommended to use one to prevent chipping. 

Step 2: Make an oval shape on the bottom of the nail using taupe or brown polish and the nail art brush or just the regular polish brush. 

Step 3: Do another oval shape on top of the first one and two little triangles on the sides for the ears. 

Step 4: Now take the black polish and the thin brush. Draw the outline of the shapes previously drawn and draw the little antlers of the reindeer. Try to make as many branches as you can to make them look realistic. 

Step 5: Using red, make the nose. It can be made with the regular polish brush, with the nail art brush or a dotting tool. 

Step 6: Using white draw an oval white shape on top of the reindeer's snout and outline it with black. Do two black dots in the middle for the eyes.

Step 7: To add some final touches you can do some white lines on the eyes and the nose. These would go just where the light would hit the reindeer. Add top coat after all of this is dry. Make sure to wait 10-15 minutes so that your design doesn't get smudged. 

That's it! I know this design is pretty complicated, but you will get a lot of compliments for it. And of course, it's super cute! You can do it as an accent nail if you don't have enough time or patience to do it on every nail. I hope you liked these tutorials and you will try some of them yourself! Happy Holidays! 

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