Tuesday, 29 April 2014

The Neverending Pile Challenge: Most Expensive

I like to think I am quite thrifty when it comes nail polish buying but every so often I feel like splurging if there is something amazing that I can't get any dupes for cheaper. When I started blogging, I'd see swatches of holographic polishes and I'd just look at the my screen trying to keep my mouth closed. Unfortunately, I couldn't find any holos at the local Target so I had to go hunting for the only brand I knew had good holos and I knew where to get from. Yes, it took a plane, bus and tram round trip to get the $19.95 Layla Hologram Effect polish (I had other plans for this trip but I was utterly excited to go shopping for polish). Yes, I was unaware if the price when I gave it to the checkout lady and didn't want to seem like a cheapskate and put it back on the shelf before walking out. As awkward as that experience was for me, today I can be glad that Coral Glam is part of my stash. 

This wasn't an untried as such. I had put it on on a couple of fingers  before to marvel at the beauty of the holo but had never worn it as a full mani. And man! I forgot how pretty this was. It's subtle enough on the shade but once it comes out to the sun that flame is strong. 

By the way, I used a base coat for this ad three coats of  Coral Glam to reach opacity and cover up all the drag marks that I manage to get during application.

I'm not good at leaving nail polish alone so I added my first ever DIY nail decal with a three of unused polishes. I used Konad Special Nail Polish in Black for the outline and coloured in the flower from MoYou's Suki 04 plate with Revlon Parfumerie's African Tea Rose, Sunlit Grass and Apricot Nectar. I thought the green polish was an unused polished but turned out I had used Essence's The Green & the Grunge before. Once I applied and cleaned up around the decal, I topped the whole mani with one coat of HK Girl Top Coat.

I know the decal isn't the best but I'm happy with the way this turned out. And you know, one can always look at the holo instead of the decal. :)

I really like this polish and I am glad it has come out of the untried  stash considering all the effort that was required to get this little bottle.

Till next time, 


Friday, 25 April 2014

The Neverending Pile Challenge: Had To Have It, Still Haven't Worn It

About a year and a half ago, Tasha let me try her Warm & Fozzie polish from the Muppets Collection by OPI and I fell in love instantly. I looked for it in a lot of  places but they seemed to be sold out and I didn't want to pay $20 for a bottle of polish at the department store. Eventually, I found it at a particular shop (that I will not mention because the bottle turned out to be a fake OPI!!!) and paid $17 (yes, $17 for a fake!!!) for one of the most beautiful polishes I had seen until then. And it sat in storage for a while, then more bottles came into the stash and Warm & Fozzie stayed in its place, almost forgotten.

When it came to today's prompt, I had to think which one fitted the category the best since I have a lot of polishes that I bought because I really wanted them but I'd  worn them on at least a finger for a day. Warm & Fozzie didn't even get that kinda treatment so I figured today would be the best day to bring it out and wear. 

I love all the tiny bronze, rose gold and gold shimmer particles of this polish, how they glisten in the sun and how reflective they are. My camera was freaking out a bit at the sight of all the reflected light so I brought the camera inside and used the light box. It's still very pretty. How did I go so long without using it?!!!

And because I can never leave good things alone, I decided to bring out an unused stamping plate to go with the polish. I even had to peel off the blue plastic film off the plate for this mani, I can say it was satisfying. 

I used the tribal pattern from BM-402 and Penny Talk, Blue Rhapsody and Good As Gold all from Essie's Metallic Mirrors collection (which have been used previously). 

I realise this looks kinda Easter-eggy down to the crinkling of the metallic polish over Warm & Fozzie but I was going for a tribal look.

I'm still quite pleased with the way this turned out and I'm glad to be back on the challenge.

Till next time, 


Thursday, 24 April 2014

GOT Polish Challenge: Something Tropical

I'm back after week and half long blogging break. I didn't go on a holiday or had a emergency pop up, I was feeling overwhelmed and disappointed with my lack of imagination for innovative manis and the pressure (put on me by me and me only) to keep up with the two challenges I decided to take up on recently. I'd usually see it as a lack of professionalism to just leave for a while without notice but I was just not feeling it. This is supposed to be a hobby that I ENJOY and trying to keep up when my mind shut the creative side out temporarily makes this pastime everything but.

But the break helped and now I'm back with what I feel is a clear head and itchy fingers to get some nail art happening. When the 'something tropical' prompt popped out, I knew I didn't want to just do palm trees or a sunset because well, I'd be too difficult for me to do and I didn't want to get tired on my first post. So I googled tropical and after a few clicks here and there, I decided to do a blue poison dart frog skin pattern on my nails, which live in the tropical forest of Central America.

I started with two coats of Absolutely Blue by Essence and one of HK Girl top coat for the base and let that dry. I then used a wedged make up sponge and created a rough triangular gradient with Essie's Aruba Blue by tapping the sponge lightly over the base and building up the colour (I reeeally need to learn to break up my sentences). Once dry, I used Topshop's Celestial to do the outline of the spots and used American Apparel's Hassid for the black spots. Finished by cleaning my cuticles and with one coat of HK Girl top coat.

Frog used for inspiration. 


This was super quick and easy to do, I would generally have to repeat at least one step in my manis but not with this one. Woohoo!


I'm really happy with the way this turned out so I could almost say i'll be back next week. Maybe... I can't promise anything. 

Till next time, 


Monday, 14 April 2014

GOT Polish Challenge: Coral

I should be calling this challenge Golden Oldie Monday since I've managed to start the posts from Wednesday night but don't end up publishing them until Monday. Anyway, I didn't think I had any old corals that fell into the category of a Golden Oldie until I looked up and Lisa II by Bloom, a boutique Australian brand, that was staring at me with wide, sad eyes.I bought Lisa II back in June 2011, along with Eddie, and since then it has been used in a lot of good and bad milestone moments for me so I'm presenting this in a bitter sweet manner. I also used Essence's C'est Le Vie! that I rediscovered since I created this mani, I know I had a whinge about it then but I think the formula got better since it got a little of air in. 

I started with two coats Lisa II on my index and pinky fingers and let them semi dry before attaching the rhinestones to the tacky polish. I then used two coats of C'est Le Vie! on my middle finger and thumb with one coat of HK Girl Top Coat to seal it. For the dry marble, I dropped three thick diagonal lines of the polishes above and Essence's Give me Nude, Baby! and squished it with a plastic bag. 

I didn't use any topcoat on Lisa II or the marble as they came out quite shiny the way they were. I also noticed the Bloom polish was slightly see through, which makes me think this is a crelly. Here I was thinking I didn't have anything like it for ages but I obviously didn't know about polish when I got it.

I think I might need to start doing the next prompt so I can get it done by at least Friday. Hehe! 

Till next time, 


Wednesday, 9 April 2014

The Neverending Pile Challenge: Pastel

I almost thought I wasn't gonna post on the second day of the challenge because I had the idea that I didn't have any untried pastel polishes. Pastel colours don't really complement my skin tone so if I buy one of these hues, I do it for a reason and I will use it. After I had a good look in my stash, I came across a Nails Inc polish that I had bought as a gift but for some reason or another, I never ended up giving it away. So it sat on the rack for year and a half without even having been opened until today.

I present to you Little Miss Sunshine by Nails Inc, a peachy, nude creme that has a very nice, quick drying formula for a lighter polish. It got it opaque in three coats but it would have been fine with two if I had done been a little more careful with the application. To tell you the truth, I wasn't expecting much from this polish from previous experience with this type of colour but I was pleasantly surprised and couldn't stop looking at it for a while. As mentioned,  three coats and no topcoat for the swatch below.

I always get itchy fingers... (that was me trying to be funny, just in case you missed it) when I have plain nail polish and this time was no exception. The image that I thought of when I saw the colour on my nails was one of the many manicures that float around on Pinterest of metallic overlapping triangles over a nude base. I've seen them a lot (but I cannot find one of them right now!!!) and I knew exactly what colours I wanted to use. 

I brought out the striping tape and created one long triangle per nail with OPI's Goldeneye, let that dry and repeated the same process with Essie's Nothing Else Metals. I topped it all off with one coat of HK Girl Top Coat. 

Unfortunately, Some of the Goldeneye polish came off with the tape when I tried to create the purple triangles, then took too long to remove the tape when I was working with Nothing Else Metals, all which left the triangles a little rough. I tried to patch up the missing bits taken off Goldeneye with a dotting tool and it sort of worked but there was nothing I could do with NEM.  I'm tempted  to tag this as nail fail but it looks nice and sparkly from afar and I've learnt that next time, because there will be a next time, to make the triangles longer to help with the overall look and work within appropriate tape removal times with each polish.

I went for the best angles of the mani hence the lack of photos and different poses. :)

I already have the next prompt's mani ready to go and I'm roaring to dive into this challenge fully.

Till next time, 


Monday, 7 April 2014

The Never Ending Challenge: Glitter

Well, hello. What am I doing posting on a Monday? I decided to join The GLITTAH Pirates Facebook group which is hosting The Neverending Pile Challenge. The purpose is to encourage us all to move polishes from the untried polish to the normal pile. I know I won't be participating in the ALL challenge, especially because it runs all the way down to July but I'll give it a go when I can fill one the prompts. 

To start off the challenge, no better prompt could have been than glitter. Glitter is awesome, period. I brought out Hyacinth Sparkle by Nubar, a dense lavender glitter with a beautiful buttery, long lasting formula. I've had this since Nov 2012 as part of a 3-pack and I left it on the untried pile because it looked sheer and I'm not the biggest fan of glitter generally. I only need two easy coats to get full coverage and the simple sparkle of the polish made me fall in love with it. 

I have included some swatches below but I didn't just want it leave it at that so I looked some nail art ideas from lack of imagination and settled for the design from this post by Hey, Nice Nails!. I used a black stripper to create the lines on the index finger and added some black square rhinestones on the rest of the fingers to tie it all up. Topped it all off with one coat of HK Girl.

Now for the swatches without topcoat.

I'm really looking forward to the rest of the challenge, especially to some of the later prompts. 

Till next time, 


Sunday, 6 April 2014

GOT Polish Challenge: Pastel

Well, it's not Thursday today but I can reassure you this post has been in planning since Wednesday night last week. I knew I wanted to use Sweet Hook by China Glaze, my first pastel polish after much resistance from my part, but didn't know how I would use it. After some frustration research, I end up with some saran wrapped, drippy nails. It took me three goes to create the mani you see below from having to do and redo the drips; they would come out crooked, too fat or too chunky. This was an OK try but I actually liked the second one better didn't take photos of it but never mind, I'm happy with the result.

For my last attempt, I started with two coats of China Glaze in Sweet Hook, which has been used a lot in this blog, and let it mostly dry. I then applied one thin coat of Australis' Aqua (please don't judge, it was an early time for this blog) and saran wrapped it off while it was still wet. I then dotted a line of Butter London's Union Jack Black along the tips of the nails and two dots at different levels of the nails to create the drops' base. I let that dry for a few minutes before taking the Topshop Nail Art Pen in Black, tool that I have used almost to the bottom of its container, to smooth out the dotted lines and creating the neck of the drops. It turned out super chunky so I waited for it dry for a while before creating the highlights on the drops with the white Nail Art Pen from Topshop. Once all that was done, I finished with one coat of HK Girl top coat.

This nails were chunky on the tips, I could feel them and it bother me a little but I kept them on overnight. When I woke up, they were a lot smoother and looked nicer, unfortunately I had to go to work before the sun had come up so I couldn't take new photos (mostly from tiredness). When I finished work I had a tiny little bit of tip wear and was tempted to cover it and take new pics but the day got on the way and that thought went out the window. What I figure is that the thick tips protected this mani and allowed me to keep it for a few days before it peeled off in thick, black chunks.

The thing about this mani, even though not perfect, has shown me that I have come a long way in nail art. I used to get frustrated because I couldn't come up with acceptable stuff and would just take it all off without posting anything on this blog. This time, I had basic tools, knowledge of how to use them, better colour theory and most important of all, a lot more patience and persistence to create a funky mani (from afar, it looked better from afar). Who would have thought painting nails would have so many benefits?

Till next time, 


Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Revlon Parfumerie in China Flower

I have a very soft spot for red polishes. They are classic, easy to wear on their own and there will always be one that suits your skin tone perfectly. When it came to buying the whole collection of Revlon Parfumerie polishes because I obviously had no restraint, I knew China Flower would be one of my favourite ones of the lot by just looking at the colour. It was even better when I opened up the bottle and started painting my nails with it.

China Flower is a leaning-to-coral red crelly, it is opaque and even in ONE coat with a super buttery and quick drying formula. Can I say anything else better about it? The scent is beautiful. I have seen a few mixed reviews on the smell but I'm one of the people that absolutely adores it. The subtle smell is this combination of musk, spice and pepper with none of the sweetness most of the other polishes in the range have. With a name like China Flower one would expect something different but I am pleasantly surprised.

I figured doing plain swatches of this red would be extremely boring for you guys, so I decided to try some cut out nails. I have always love the look of them but my striping skills have only recently improved and I felt the lack of such skills was a big hindrance to me recreating the manicure type properly.

I started with one coat of Essence's Give Me Nude, a super sheer polish that is basically the equivalent of foundation for your nails, and then sticky taped off the sections I wanted to leave nude and got myself painting. I only used one coat China Flower to get the coverage that I did. Once all the polish was dried, I brought out my trustworthy Topshop Nail Art Pen and started lining the perimeter of the nude parts of the nails. I finished it all off with one coat of HK Girl top coat.

I know most cut out manicures have a lot more colours and windows and whatever, but I like the simplicity  of these. They were really fun to wear and sniff when dry even though my lines weren't perfect at a macro scale. It was one of those manicures that looked great from afar and I was the only getting close enough to them and I wasn't worried. Win, win for me. :)

China Flower is a welcome addition to the stash even if I already own something similar without the smell. I would recommend this if you're looking to get on the scented polish wagon as the colour is on the safe side and the smell is subtle enough that you would have to put your hands near your nose to smell it. And you know, you wanna look like an odd lady doing that.

Till next time, 



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