Tuesday, April 30, 2013

April favorites and haul

Hello lovelies! Today is the last day of the Month and there had to be a favorites post. Plus I have to show you the damage I've done this month. I have to admit that I got a lot of stuff in April and there's also some on the way, which I will show you in next month's haul. But first, let's see the favorites. 

This month has been all about spring manicures. I painted lots of flowers and used a lot of pastels. My absolute favorite is the fresh flowers manicure in the top left corner. The grass and flower one in the bottom left corner came close too. Then we have the pastel color block, the delicate lillies of the valley and finally the green mojito craziness in the bottom right corner. It has been a cheerful month indeed!

Barry M Prickly Pear And A Bunny

Hello my lovelies! As promised yesterday, I have another post from the Easter challenge for you today. If you haven't seen yesterday's post (link here), I will just mention that Romanian Easter is on Sunday, so I'm not just crazy late with the Easter challenge. Today's theme was bunnies and I tried my luck at free hand nail art. Well, let me just point out that I haven't done free hand in a while and I suck at it more than ever. My bunny looks exactly like the ones I used to draw when I was 5. But let me first show you the base polish I used. 

Barry M Prickly Pear in the sun
Barry M Prickly Pear is the second of the Gelly polishes I got. It's a lovely lilac color with a very glossy finish. I was surprised to find out that I don't have any dupes for this polish in my collection. It's more blue toned than other lilacs I have, and it actually photographed very blue so I had to alter the color to make it look more accurate. A lot of people complained about the sheerness of this one, but I didn't have any issues. It is a bit more sheer than the other one I tried, however I managed to get it opaque in 2 medium coats. I was expecting a very sheer jelly from the reviews online, so I was thinking that maybe I would use it for jelly sandwiches. As usual, this dried very shiny, so there is no top coat in the pictures. Again I had the same issue with it drying slower than other polishes, which makes fast drying top coat a must in my opinion. 

Barry M Prickly Pear in the sun
And now for the nail art. I used a dotting tool to make dots with Barry M Blueberry on all but the ring finger. There I painted my weird looking bunny using some thin brushes and a few polishes. The grey is Rimmel Grey Matter and the pink is Kallos 54.

I wish I had done some artificial light photos of this, because the dots don't really stand out in this light. They were more contrasting in real life. I took this manicure off pretty quickly, because I didn't like the bunny at all. I also considered redoing it but I wasn't really into this theme and knew I wasn't going to do anything better. The manicure for tomorrow on the other hand came out great and I can't wait to show it to you. Until then, go see what the other girls have prepared for today's theme: 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Monday Blues With Grass And Flowers

Hello my lovelies! Today is a lovely Monday for me because I am on holiday. If you are working or going to school today I have prepared a post to cheer you up. First, I have my weekly blue, of course. Then there's some nail art because I'm starting a little challenge today. Few people know that in Romania we celebrate Orthodox Easter, which is different from the Catholic one. They usually are about one week apart, but this year they are over one month apart. I'm not very familiar with the way they are calculated each year, but I'm really happy that this year our Easter is in May, namely this Sunday. This way we were able to have a longer holiday and the weather is just gorgeous compared to the winter we had in March. I've teamed up with a few Romanian bloggers to do this challenge that starts today and will have a daily manicure until Friday. I hope you'll enjoy these even if you have already or don't celebrate Easter. They are full of spring colors and cheerful things. Enough with the blabber, let's get to the blue. 

Barry M Gelly Blueberry indoors, artificial light

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Fancy Glitter Pants

Hello my loves and happy Sunday! I'm going all out with the crazy names for my posts lately. Again I was inspired by the name of the polish that I used for today's manicure. It's my second pick from the China Glaze Avant Garden collection. Frankly, I'm really surprised that I only got 2 polishes from this collection. I guess I liked the older China Glaze spring collections better. Or maybe I'm getting more and more picky. Anyway, let's get to the nails! 

China Glaze Fancy Pants with Essence Circus Confetti indoors, artificial light
Fancy Pants is a really awesome polish but it's impossible to photograph, so I had to alter it a bit to show the true color. It's quite funny that the name reminds me of American Dad. The polish is blurple, which means it's somewhere between blue and purple. I see it more as a purple than as a blue, so it sits together with my purple swatch sticks. There's also a lovely pink shimmer in there that is quite visible, even though it is subtle. It's definitely an original polish and I love that about it. 

China Glaze Fancy Pants with Essence Circus Confetti indoors, artificial light
I found the formula of this polish a little thick, but I still managed to work with it pretty easily. I did 2 coats to make it opaque. Then I felt it needed a little something extra and so I did some multicolored glitter tips using Essence Circus Confetti. It looked a lot better in reality but this kind of glitter is hard to photograph. It totally freaked my camera out and I could barely find a few photos that were properly focused. 

China Glaze Fancy Pants with Essence Circus Confetti indoors, artificial light
These nails were fun to wear even though the glitter was a pain to remove. That's why I avoid using glitter that often. Otherwise I would probably use glitter for every single manicure because it's truly amazing. Do you agree?

Saturday, April 27, 2013

I Need A Mojito!

Hello lovelies! Aah, finally Saturday! My exams are over and I'm ready to relax and take it easy. The title of today's post is inspired by the polish I used for this manicure. It's called Mojito Madness and it totally reminded me of how much I like Mojitos and that I absolutely want one because it's a perfect summer treat. It's also the perfect way to unwind after a stressful couple of weeks. Enjoy! 

I started this manicure with 2 coats of Essie Mojito Madness. It's a spring green creme that has a bit more blue in it compared to other bright greens like this. Of course it wanted to photograph with a yellow tone so I had to alter the photos a bit to make it look like the real deal. This polish is so bright and fun that it instantly puts you in a good mood. Way to go, Essie! What I don't really like is the huge new brush. I don't buy a lot of Essie's so this is the first one I got since they changed the brush. Honestly, I had no idea and it totally caught me by surprise. I'm not a fan of large brushes and this one is just massive. 

Luckily the formula made this go on smooth, but I was quite puzzled by the tiny bubbles that showed up when it dried. I'm not sure why that happened and I hope it wasn't the polish's fault. On my ring finger I used some rectangular black rhinestones that I totally love. Good news is that I found a whole wheel of black rhinestones of different shapes on eBay and it already got here, so you will see more of these soon. On the rest of the fingers I layered 2 coats of Etude House PBK803 Coco Black. I sometimes feel the urge to put this glitter over everything and anything!

These nails were a great mood booster while I wore them. Too bad I could only keep them for 2 days because I had to take them off before an exam. I definitely need to use these polishes again soon, not to mention the black rhinestones. They are so cool! 

Friday, April 26, 2013

China Glaze Secret Peri-wink-le

Hello my lovelies! I couldn't be happier about it being Friday. I have my last exam today and then it's holiday time for me. I can't wait to enjoy the beautiful spring weather and do lots of nail art! The polish I'm gonna show you today has been a long time lemming of mine. China Glaze came out with a similar color this spring, but I preferred to get this one because I love the older China Glaze formula. Needless to say that it didn't disappoint! 

China Glaze Secret Per-wink-le in the sun
Secret Peri-wink-le (not too crazy about the spelling of the name) is, of course, a periwinkle creme. In my photos it looks a bit more blue than it actually is, but my camera is always fussy when it comes to picking up purple. The color is right between blue and purple in reality, so in order to avoid controversy I didn't post it as a Monday Blue

China Glaze Secret Per-wink-le in the sun
The formula was as perfect as I expected. 2 easy coats were all it needed to look great. I love the way these older China Glaze cremes go on and I love the brush. There was almost no cleanup necessary after applying this one. It dries very shiny and doesn't need top coat, but I added some to make it dry faster because I wanted to do some nail art on top. 

China Glaze Secret Per-wink-le in the sun
This beautiful spring color immediately inspired me to add some more spring colors and make it a spring color block manicure. So I used some striping tape to mask the tips and added Rimmel Peppermint and Barry M Peach Melba alternatively on each finger. 

I was completely in love with the way this looked so I had to do both my hands. I did sort of a mirror image on my left hand where the fingers that had peach on my right hand had mint on my left hand and vice versa. The picture below has been taken with the camera sitting on a very wobbly tripod so forgive the awkwardness. 

This totally screams spring to me. I hope you enjoyed it too and I'm looking forward to showing you even more spring manicures in the following weeks! 

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Catrice Squeeze Me and Mint Me Up

Hello lovelies! The title of today's post might seem a little strange to you, but you should blame Catrice for that. They always have all sorts of weird names for their polishes and this time they made me sound ridiculous. Oh well, I hope you will forgive me. I have two new Catrice shades to show you today (I've already posted about Denim Moore) and there are lots of pictures so let's get started. 

Catrice Mint Me Up indoors, artificial light
As I've mentioned before, it's very hard to find an original minty polish at this point. Well, Catrice have done it with this shimmery mint called Mint Me Up. The polish is a darker mint color and has two different things going on in it. First there's a fine golden shimmer that is just delicious to look at. Then there are little copper flecks that shop up in the bottle but not so much on the nail. There were a few on the nails but it was impossible to make them show up in pictures. I tried three different lights to photograph this but it pretty much looks the same in all of them. The shimmer is still lovely though. 

Catrice Mint Me Up in the sun
The formula was great for this and apart from the awful wonky brush I had no issue with it. It was opaque in 2 coats and dried really fast. It also seems that the new Catrice polishes have a better wear than the old ones, but I can't be sure cause I only wear polishes for about 2 days anyway. 

Catrice Mint Me Up indoors, artificial direct light
That shimmer is so pretty! The same thing is going on in the second polish, the one called Squeeze Me. 

Catrice Squeeze Me indoors, artificial light
Squeeze me is a dark army green polish that is packed with the same golden shimmer that Catrice does so well. It's a very cool color and it's perfect for fall. But that doesn't mean you can't wear it whenever you want. I honestly love all three of my recent Catrice polishes, but I think this one is my favorite because it's such an unusual color. 

Catrice Squeeze Me indoors, artificial light
This one was the first one I wore and it was still winter back then, so I have no sun pictures of it. I also had trouble with the manicure because my Seche Vite was getting really thick and it made the polish shrink. The polish itself had no issues and went on smooth and opaque in 2 coats. I really like the shades Catrice is coming up with lately, I just wish they could go back to the old bottle and brush or at least solve the issues they currently have. One can only hope! 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Essence Colour3 Boys Are Back In Town

Hello my lovelies! I'm almost done with my exams and I have more free time than last week, but I'm still feeling quite uninspired. I decided to post something from the vault today because these pictures have been sitting on my computer for too long and it might be your last chance to get this polish. Essence has discontinued the Colour3 polishes, but they are still available here and there, so maybe you can find them on clearance somewhere. The one I'm showing you today is more of a neutral combo. Let's start with the base polish. 

Essence Boys Are Back In Town indoors, artificial direct light
Boys Are Back In Town is quite an interesting creme. It's somewhere between grey and purple, very elegant and less boring than other neutral shades. Of course it didn't photograph accurately like most of these colors. It's more grey in reality but it also depends on the light. The formula was nice and I managed to get it opaque in 2 coats. What you see above is 2 coats without any top coat. It's definitely shiny so please excuse the reflection. However, the best part about this duo is the shimmer top coat. 

Essence It's Just A Little Crush over Boys Are Back In Town indoors, artificial light
If the base color doesn't convince you to get this duo, the top coat will. It's a beautiful and dense shimmer in a clear base. There are multiple colors of shimmer in there, like purple and blue, even though they don't show up right in photos. I really did my best to capture the effect. 

Essence It's Just A Little Crush over Boys Are Back In Town indoors, artificial light
What I love about this is the density of the shimmer. It only took one coat to get this result. I haven't tried layering it over other colors but I'm sure it would look great over anything. 

Essence It's Just A Little Crush over Boys Are Back In Town indoors, artificial direct light
I hope you enjoyed looking at this beauty. If you can still find it and don't have it I really think you should get it. It's hard to find such a good layering shimmer, especially for an affordable price. 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Monday Blues: China Glaze Strap On Your Moonboots

Hello my lovelies! The Monday Blues post is coming a bit later than usual today because I was to lazy too write it last night. The sun is still shining and the weather is great, so I'm gonna show you another holographic polish. I only wore holos for most of last week to take advantage of the sun. So here's what I'm gonna be showing you today. 

China Glaze Strap On Your Moonboots in the sun
Hologlam was one of the most sought-after collections of the year. When it came out, a lot of people were disappointed because they expected the polishes to have a better holo effect, kinda like the OMG collection had. There were some that got the whole collection and others that didn't get any. I settled for just one for the time being, and I probably won't get any others. Don't get me wrong, I love this polish, but I'm afraid the other blues in the collection will be pretty similar and the formula isn't helping either. 

China Glaze Strap On Your Moonboots in the sun
Strap On Your Moonboots is a darker blue holo with a lot of grey in it. It's pretty hard to define this color because it really looks different depending on the light. In some lights it even looks like a darker silver, so it's not one of those true blue holos that you might have seen around. The holo effect is less of a rainbow one because it has darker colors in it. I think the space related names in this collection are spot on because these do remind me of a sci-fi movie. I did my best to capture it in various sun pictures to give you a better idea of what I'm talking about.

China Glaze Strap On Your Moonboots in the sun
The formula of this polish was kind of difficult. I don't own an aqua base so I used my regular base coat. It drags like crazy so it's better not to go over the same spot twice. My right hand (the one that I photograph) was the first one I polished and I wasn't used to the formula yet and that's why there's some unevenness on some on my fingers. Of course the left hand came out better, but that hand doesn't know how to pose so I couldn't capture the holo effect on it. I did 2 coats for these swatches because the first one had bald spots. I used a coat of top coat but I don't think it altered the holo effect at all. Here's how the polish looks in artificial light. 

China Glaze Strap On Your Moonboots indoors, artificial light
Finally I would like to say that this polish wears quite well for a holo polish. I didn't wear it for longer than 3 days but I had no chipping or tip wear. I'm really curious if this stamps well so I think I'm gonna give it a try soon. Don't forget to check out the other Monday Blues posts below! 

Have a great week! 

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Kiko Holographic 401

Hello lovelies and happy Sunday! Yesterday I got rid of another exam and now I'm back with another post, as promised. I just realized that I've posted too little this month, so I will try to make it up to you next week. I have a few things to show you and frankly I was quite indecisive as to what I should post today. Since it's still gorgeous outside and the sun has been gracing us with its presence for most of the week, I decided to show you what I've been staring at for the last few days. This week I've been wearing a couple of holos. The first one is blue, so you will see it tomorrow for Monday Blues. The second one is the object of today's post. 

Kiko 401 Peacock Green in the sun
I must tell you from the start that this might just be my favorite holographic polish from all the ones I own. What is so amazing about it is the color, of course, and the fact that it's bright and always looks teal. There are some holos that look silver or some variation of charcoal in certain lights. But it's not the case with this one. The name Peacock Green is kinda off in my opinion. The color is more blue and lighter compared to peacock green. It has a linear holo finish that is not very strong, but still quite noticeable in the sun. 

Kiko 401 Peacock Green in the sun
Another good light for the holo effect was the halogen lamp beside my bed. Unfortunately that lamp makes my skin look diseased so I can't take photos in it. You'll just have to settle for the sun ones. I had a lot of time to play with it in the sun so I took quite a few pictures. Hope you like them! 

Kiko 401 Peacock Green in the sun
The formula was pretty much like the previous Kiko holo I reviewed (link here). There is a tendency to drag, but it doesn't compare to other holos. 2 coats applied with a little care were all it took to make it opaque. Since I don't like wearing polish without top coat, I used a coat of Seche Vite on top. The top coat doesn't dull the holo effect at all. Here's how it looks in artificial light. 

Kiko 401 Peacock Green indoors, artificial light
 I wore this for 3 days and it started chipping after 2 days. I know that holos have a tendency to chip sooner so I think it's ok. Once again I would like to thank Chiro for helping me get this amazing polish. Even though it is now discontinued, I hope you've enjoyed looking at this beauty! 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

China Glaze Keep Calm, Paint On

Hello my lovelies! Sorry for the shortage of posts this week. I have an exam on Saturday and so little time to study for it. And on top of everything I have no inspiration to write cause my head is all over the place after all the studying. It's been quite sunny and lovely outside for the last few days and I thought I would show you a gorgeous springy shade. The name is also very appropriate and I could use it as a motto for this stressful week. Keep calm, paint on! 

China Glaze Keep Calm, Paint On indoors, artificial light
Minty greens are a must for spring and I do have quite a few in my collection. They all tend to be the same shade and we, as the polish addicts that we are, can only say "they're not the same, they're similar". But the truth is that most people would say they are pretty much the same. Well this spring, China Glaze has decided to finally bring out a unique minty polish. Keep Calm, Paint On from the Avant Garden collection is a shimmery mint. It's a lot lighter than the other minty shades in my collection and the tiny silver shimmer is very pretty, almost like a pearl finish. I also love the name cause this polish truly makes me think of peaceful things. 

China Glaze Keep Calm, Paint On indoors, artificial light
I was expecting a difficult formula from this one but it was definitely less scary than I thought. It has good pigmentation, which makes it opaque in 2 medium coats. I did do my coats slightly thicker than I usually do. Unfortunately it was streaky and also had a few bubbles, but Seche Vite took care of them and leveled everything out. I wouldn't call this a perfect formula, but for a light color like this it's not too bad. Don't know what those bubbles were doing there and I sure hope it won't happen the next time I wear it. 

China Glaze Keep Calm, Paint On indoors, artificial direct light
I'm in love with this shade! There's also another special minty shade from Catrice that I have to show you. And I have some nail art and lots of swatches for you, just need to edit the pictures. They will all be coming starting Saturday. Until then, have a great end of the week! 

Monday, April 15, 2013

Monday Blues: China Glaze Water You Waiting For

Hello my lovelies! It's Monday and I have an exam today, but I'm not here to talk about unpleasant things like that. I'm here to take those Monday Blues away and I'm sure that will happen. I have a glitter that will rock your world! Are you ready? 

China Glaze Water You Waiting For indoors, artificial light
This beauty has been sitting in my untrieds for ages and I have no idea why. Finally, I saw it on Mandy's blog a couple of weeks ago and knew I had to put it on soon. Water You Waiting For was my first pick from the Cirque du Soleil collection, which makes it quite funny that it was the last one I tried. It seems I am quite lazy when it comes to removing glitter and that's why these types of polishes are rarely worn. 

China Glaze Water You Waiting For indoors, artificial light
This sparkly beauty is made of a sheer blue base with blue, green and purple glitter. Of course the blue glitter is dominant, but the other two colors are also visible, which gives a nice dimension to the polish. My camera doesn't capture purple properly, so you'll have to imagine that the lighter blue pieces are actually purple. Bottom line, the pictures don't do it justice at all. I tried to portray more of its beauty in the following macro shot.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Guest post for Life in Color!

Hello loves! Some of you might know my friend Gosia from Life in Color! because we do Monday Blues together. Well at this very moment, she is climbing Mount Everest! Can you believe it? I will never do something as challenging as that but now at least I can brag that I know somebody who climbed the Everest! While she is away, she invited me to do a guest post on her blog. You can find it here or by clicking on the picture below. 

Make sure you head over to Gosia's blog to find out more about this manicure. I feel really honored that she hosted me and wish her the best of luck in her adventure! 

Fresh flowers

Hello my lovelies! It's finally spring! After a snowy March and a rainy beginning of April, I finally have sun. I don't know about you but weather is very important for my mood. I'm generally a warm season kind of person and I only like snow for Christmas. So the crappy so-called spring we had until now totally ruined my mood. I've felt uninspired with nail art and blogging in general. But today I want to show you the first spring inspired nail art of the year. I've already posted flowers last week, but this time it's all about spring colors. 

Looking at these colors instantly makes me happy! And the fact that they are in pretty flower form is even better. There's something about flower designs that makes me instantly smile. I never get tired of this kind of nail art. 

You can see that I finally had proper sun to take photos. As a base for this design I used China Glaze Light As Air, a delicate lilac pastel. I stamped with Orly Snowcone (cornflower blue) and plate CH50 from the second Cheeky set. Finally I used China Glaze Lemon Fizz and some dotting tools to do the centers of the flowers. 

The fact that two of the colors I used are from the Up&Away collection is not a coincidence. This still remains my favorite spring collection of all time, even though it came out before I was into nail polish. I still plan on picking up more polishes from this awesome collection. 

I really hope my nails brightened your day. I will certainly do some more pastel nail art in the following weeks. Stay tuned! 

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