Showing posts with label gold. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gold. Show all posts

07 January 2014

Wing Dust Collections, Swatches and Review: I Ain't No Angel, I Can See Your Holo, and Waking Dream

Hi everyone! Now that all my end of the year/beginning of the year blog posts are out of the way, I can get back to regular blog posts. And for you that means swatches! Even better - all three of these polishes are included in my giveaway! Stephanie, the maker of Wing Dust Collections, was kind enough not only to donate some polishes for the giveaway, but she also sent an extra set so that I could blog about them!



All three of these polishes are stunning as I've come to expect from Wing Dust Collections. Beautiful shimmers, poetic names, and ethereal colours and glitters.

25 December 2013

Girly Bits Get Weaponized and Merry Christmas!

Hi everyone! Merry Christmas if you celebrate, and if you don't, I hope you had a relaxing day of movies and Chinese food! It seems odd to be wearing a polish with such an aggressive name for my Xmas mani, but I couldn't have asked for something more perfect, or gorgeous. It also was the ideal base for some snowflakes so make sure to check out the full post.

Girly Bits Get Weaponized

11 December 2013

The Digit-al Dozen Does Red, Gold, and Green: Day One: Lynnderella Spumoni

Hi everyone! This month's Digit-al Dozen nail art week started yesterday, but I missed it on account of the Beginner Blogger's Bootcamp post. So it looks like I'll be playing catch-up later this week! The theme of red, gold, and green obviously ties into the upcoming holidays. And despite the fact that I generally like holiday-themed nail art, I'll admit that I'm finding this week hard in terms of coming up with unique nail art ideas.

Lynnderella Spumoni with water marble accent nail

27 October 2013

31 Day Challenge: Day Twenty-Eight, Inspired by a Flag: The Franco-Ontarian Flag

Hi everyone! Out of all the prompts in the 31 Day Challenge, the "Inspired by a Flag" prompt is by far the most uninspiring of all of them. I realize that flags serve an important purpose as symbols of nations, regions or groups, and I find it interesting to see what flags different countries and regions adopt. But on an aesthetic level, flags are pretty boring and unappealing. Like, someone please, take a brush and paint some pretty flowers on that thing! But it's a challenge, and in my research I ended up finding a flag that was interesting on a more personal level.

Franco-Ontarian flag nail art

11 October 2013

Pink Raindrops Delicate Leopard Print

Hi everyone! Last night I sat down to paint my nails because I'll be going to a conference tomorrow and I didn't want to wear my five-day-old manicure. I initially set out to do a plain one-colour mani, however, after not having done any nail art for a week, it soon morphed into more than a simple paint job.

Delicate leopard print nail art

To get this look: I started out with two coats of Illamasqua Pink Raindrops. I really love the colour and sheen of this polish along with the tiny flakies, but it is slightly difficult to work with. The consistency is thicker than I prefer, and it doesn't spread out evenly, so just make sure to apply carefully and wait between coats. It is well worth it - despite the difficulties, I have no regrets with this purchase.

Delicate leopard print nail art

The delicate leopard print was done with Orly Luxe and Illamasqua Facet. I was disappointed at first that Facet was lighter than expected, but I rather like how it doesn't contrast too much with the gold and pink background - just enough that the design stands out. The glitter is Nicole by OPI Inner Sparkle (Selena Gomez collection), and the studs are from The Nailasaurus Emporium.

Delicate leopard print nail art

I really love the feminine look to this, and the fact that it is slightly conservative. I don't mind wearing this to a more professional setting as it doesn't stand out as much as some other nail art designs.

Delicate leopard print nail art

What do you think of this? Do you ever find yourself needing to do some nail art?

29 July 2013

piCture pOlish Blog Fest 2013: Art Deco Stained Glass Nails + Tutorial

Hi everyone! I'm so happy to be participating in this year's piCture pOlish Blog Fest!! I'm sure you have already seen other posts today, but basically Blog Fest is where a bunch of nail polish bloggers (over 130!) around the world put together a post featuring polishes from the Australian brand piCture pOlish. The event is organized by piCture pOlish and they provided the polishes and the instructions. I've seen piCture pOlish Blog Fest posts from previous years by bloggers much more established than me, so I'm extremely honoured to have been chosen for this.



The theme for this year's Blog Fest is "Year of the Blogger", and it's about celebrating what bloggers do. We were instructed to make our most amazing nail art ever and to create a step-by-step tutorial of our design. Even though it seems like a lot of pressure, for me it was the perfect opportunity to challenge myself and to create a design that would push my abilities.




About This Design

I was given three polishes from the Metallic Shades collection: Bombshell (a vibrant blue metallic with shimmer), Goddess (a copper metallic), and Metallic Mush (a pale gold metallic foil). I've been wanting to do intricate stained glass nails for some time now, and these three polishes really suggested the Art Deco era. Art Deco design was influenced by the machine age, and it's known for it's streamlined aesthetic and geometric patterns and shapes. The designs on each nail were taken from Art Deco stained glass designs that I found online. My thumb is a duplicate for my middle finger.



Keep reading for a step-by-step tutorial on how to do stained glass nails. While this design took quite some time, six hours in fact (yikes!), you can use these instructions to do simplified stained glass nails.


Art Deco Stained Glass Tutorial


Here's what you'll need:
  • black nail polish
  • a detail nail art brush
  • various coloured polishes to fill in the design - shimmery polishes look best for that stained-glass look
  • nail polish thinner
  • lots of patience!

Step #1

Step #1: Apply base coat and let dry. Using black polish thinned with nail polish thinner, draw your outlines on your nails. At this point, use a very light touch and go slowly, but don't worry if you make a mistake, you can fix those later.
Optional: Apply a base colour - perhaps white or nude, but nothing too dark - after your base coat. If your coloured polishes are very sheer or you're worried you won't be able to cover the whole nail, having a base colour will help hide those imperfections.


Step #2

Step #2: Reinforce your lines by going over them a second time. You want to make them darker but also you can fix any mistakes made in Step #1. You don't want your lines to be too light or it will be hard to see them when you apply your colours.
Tip: Use a bit of nail polish remover and a detail brush to "erase" any mistakes made. You're going to be covering over any mistakes with the coloured polishes so you don't necessarily need to do this, however, if having an incorrect line is going to mess you up in future steps, it might be good to try and take it out.


Step #3

Step #3: Start filling in the shapes with your coloured polishes. I started with Metallic Mush and filled in all the intended spaces on each nail before moving to the next colour. However, you can complete each nail before moving on to the next.
Reminder: Since you will be moving your hand around a lot to get into small spaces, be careful not to smudge the work that you have done on your other nails! I'm talking from experience here. :)


Step #4

Step #4: Fill in all the shapes with your colours, making sure to paint up to the cuticle (leave a tiny gap!) and on the edges of your nail. You will probably need two coats for good coverage.


Step #5

Step #5: Go over the black lines again, the same as you did in Step #2. Fix any mistakes with touch-ups.


Step #6

Step #6: Clean up your edges with a fine eyeliner brush dipped in acetone. Seal with top coat and you're done! I used KBShimmer Clearly On Top, I love it because it doesn't smear your nail art!


Tips and Tricks:



Tip #1: When doing any complex or intricate nail art, make sure to do a sketch first, preferably with some of the polishes you'll be using. Here's a look at my sketches along with my mock-up of the final design. I played around with the designs I wanted on each nail. When that was settled I drew my final design and filled it in with the colours I intended to use. This acted as my blueprint when I was working on my nails.


Nail art brushes: liner brush (top) and detail brush (bottom)

Tip #2: When doing fine lines like this, use nail polish thinner to make the polish more fluid. This will also prevent it from drying out right away. Also, work very slowly. I find it helps to paint a very light line - using more thinner - then go over it again to darken the line - using less thinner - rather than trying to do the line all in one go.

Tip #3: For painting straight lines, I find that it works best to pull the brush towards me. Also, I tend to move my hand around and try painting at different angles in order to get the best angle and brush direction for the line I'm trying to make.

I hope these instructions were helpful. I went into a lot of detail because I wanted to cover as much as possible. Unless you are working with a very intricate design, or wanting to get very fine lines, stained glass nails are not very hard to do.


The piCture pOlish Blog Fest Awards

This year there will also be Blog Fest Awards. Here's the details from piCture pOlish:

There is 3 (only) awards that will be voted and chosen as follows via our special Pinterest Blog Fest 2013 board:
  • 1 x Award - as voted by PP friends and fans
  • 1 x Award - as voted by all (you) participants of Blog Fest 2013
  • 1 x Award - as voted by Jules & Megs of piCture pOlish
The winners will get to work with piCture pOlish to make a collaboration shade, so it would be very awesome if you took the time to vote. It doesn't have to be for me, but if you do want to throw your vote my way, that would be greatly appreciated. :)

I believe the special Pinterest Board is HERE. If that changes, I'll update this post.

Voting is on the piCture pOlish website, there you will also find a link to the Pinterest board. Link is HERE.



About piCture pOlish

You can follow piCture pOlish through the following links:

Facebook    
Twitter    
Pinterest    

For ordering from piCture pOlish check out their Shipping, Network and Everyday Deals pages.

What do you think of this design? Have you been checking out other designs for piCture pOlish Blog Fest?

*Polishes were provided by piCture pOlish for Blog Fest. See my disclosure policy for more details.*

26 July 2013

Introducing Eight Days of Foxy Paws: Walk Like an Egyptian

Hi everyone! I have a new to this blog indie brand for you. Foxy Paws is based out of Denmark and Charlotte, the maker/creator also runs an online distributor called Foxy Fingertips that sells several indie brands as well as nail care and nail art supplies.

Foxy Paws Walk Like an Egyptian

Charlotte says about the brand (which was launched February 2013):

"Foxy Paws polish is handpoured and mixed with a love for colour and glitter. They are 4-free, which means they're free from DBP, Toluene, Formaldehyde and Formaldehyde resin. And of course never tested on animals - although the foxes likes polished nails, they wouldn't like being test animals."

Charlotte was kind enough to send me seven of her polishes as well as a bottle of cuticle oil. Instead of putting together 2-3 larger posts of swatches, I'm going to do a series of short posts, one for each polish. Sometimes this will be in addition to my regular posts, since I still have the 31 Day Challenge and other reviews to show you. :)

Foxy Paws Walk Like an Egyptian

All of the polishes I received are named after songs, and Walk Like an Egyptian is no exception. This one is from the 80s collection and is named after the famous song by the Bangles (watch the video!). It's a turquoise blue shimmer with a smattering of 22K gold flakes. I used 3 coats with one layer of top coat, and the formula was perfect - it goes on smooth and is perfectly self-leveling.

Foxy Paws Walk Like an Egyptian

Foxy Paws Walk Like an Egyptian

I love the colour and I definitely get a feel for ancient Egypt from this - in particular, their love of gold and colourful jewelry. I'm also enjoying the subtle accents of gold. It adds a nice touch without being overwhelming.

Foxy Paws Walk Like an Egyptian

I hope you liked this introduction to Foxy Paws. As I said I'm going to be keeping these posts short from now on - last thing I want is to over post and for you to get burnt out! ;) But since I normally show multiple polishes in a post, I hope you like the change of pace.

Foxy Paws polishes is available from Foxy Fingertips (European buyers) and from Store Envy (international buyers). Follow Foxy Paws on Facebook and Instagram.

*Products provided for review, all opinions are my own. See my disclosure policy for more details.*

17 July 2013

31 Day Challenge: Day Two, Orange: Ornate Baroque

Hi everyone! Orange is not a colour I normally wear - at least not willingly. So when brainstorming ideas my mind was like a cavernous black hole, an empty abyss with one lone tumbleweed being carried by a soft wind. You get the point, don't you?



About this design: Since orange only brought to mind oranges and carrots, neither of which I wanted to paint, I decided instead to go for some Baroque design. One of the characteristics of Baroque design is foliage motifs and patterns, often very curvilinear and always decorative. I love this aspect of Baroque design, especially for nail art, and it's something that I want to practice more. The gold adds a decorative element, and the blue provides contrast and ornateness.

31 Day Challenge: Orange and blue Baroque-style nail art

To get this look: I started with two coats of Sally Hansen Fiery Island from their Salon Manicure line. Then I added one coat of Rainbow Honey Fire Spring for some shimmer. I sealed that with a coat of KBShimmer Clearly On Top. Then I did the details in Essie Aruba Blue and very thin lines of Orly Luxe. Everything was sealed with another coat of Clearly On Top.

31 Day Challenge: Orange and blue Baroque-style nail art

Tip for doing detailed lines: When doing lines like this don't try to get it right with the first stroke. For the blue lines, I went over them three times on each nail. I started by doing a very light line, just to sketch out how I wanted my lines to look. Then working with very thinned down polish, I went over the lines again trying to get them to an almost finished state. After that, I went over them a third time with slightly thicker polish for the final look. In a few places I touched up the lines with a tad bit of orange to cover up mistakes.

31 Day Challenge: Orange and blue Baroque-style nail art

This is the second time I've done some Baroque-style detailing, and I'm feeling a bit more comfortable with this type of freehand painting. However, I do want to practice more, so don't be surprised if you see this type of design again soon!

31 Day Challenge: Orange and blue Baroque-style nail art

I do find the design on my index and middle finger to be rather awkward, I don't know why. If I didn't have to do pesky things like sleep or eat, I probably would have redone these two nails. Otherwise I feel very happy with this design.

What do you think of this? How would you have approached Day Two of the 31 Day Challenge?
---

28 May 2013

Tape Manicure With Shimmer Polish Erica

Hi everyone! A quick reminder that my current giveaway ends in less than two hours, see the original post HERE for entry details. I'm back with another gorgeous creation from Shimmer Polish. I don't know about you, but I'm really enjoying these polishes, and I love slowly working my way through them.

I have a love/hate relationship with tape manis. Love because I enjoy the look of them, and there's endless possibilities. Hate because waiting for the base polish to dry thoroughly can be such a drag. I don't know where I got the idea to combine studs and a tape design, but that was the starting point for this mani.

Shimmer Polish Erica

Shimmer Polish Erica is a clear-based glitter polish that can be layered over another polish or built up to full opacity with 2-3 coats. Erica is described as a "crystal peridot," and while it appears to be light green, that's the result of the mixture of glitter. It's mainly made up of gold, silver, green and teal (from what I can tell), with a good helping of gold holo glitter. I love how it sparkles in the daylight and in low light.

Tape mani with Shimmer Polish Erica

I started with a base of OPI My Vampire is Buff (of course!), and used one coat of Erica where I did the tape design. I had planned to use circle studs but didn't like how they looked, so I made a last minute switch to the stars. Everything was done, then I looked at my nails and realized...

Tape mani with Shimmer Polish Erica

...they looked like Christmas trees! Grrrrrr... FML. Not that I have anything against holiday decor, just not in late May. Maybe if I was gearing up for half-Christmas. ;)

Tape mani with Shimmer Polish Erica

Otherwise I love the combination of the glitter with the base polish. It has a softer look I think.

Shimmer Polish is available on Etsy, from Harlow & Co., and Overall Beauty. Follow Shimmer on Facebook, and the Shimmer Polish blog for updates.

What do you think of this design or this Shimmer Polish?

*Shimmer Polish provided for review, all opinions are my own. See my disclosure policy for more details.*

26 May 2013

Seven Deadly Sins Challenge, Day 10: Wrath

Hi everyone! Today's nails don't look very wrathy, but trust me, I started these with the intent to complete the challenge for today's prompt. However, things didn't go according to plan.

The prompt for Day 10 of the challenge is as follows: "Find something that blows your top and express it with your art."

When I think of the things that blow my top - child abusers, people who are mean to kittens, able-bodied people who don't move on the escalator or let anyone pass them - I just couldn't think of anything that I would want to express in a nail art design. And I'm not the type of person who really gets angry a lot.

"Water-spotted" water marble design

But one thing that does really irritate me is splatter manis, I've tried the technique several times, with not much success. I really loved the water-spotted mani I did for Day 9 of the challenge, so I wanted to build on that. Like last time, I started with a base of OPI MY Vampire is Buff. I did a water-spotted water marble with Illamasqua Stance and Venous.

"Water-spotted" water marble design

My plan was then to do a simple splatter mani on top, but it didn't exactly work out as I hoped. So I took Orly Luxe and did another water-spotted water marble on top to try and save it, also to add some interest to the design.

"Water-spotted" water marble design

In the end, this really doesn't go with the theme, but I much like the design. I'm really liking this water-spotted technique, so expect to see more designs like this. I've been thinking about the idea of working in a series, where you take an idea and explore it in several works over a period of time. It's something that we were told to do when I was in art school, but I believe it also applies to nail art. For example, if you like roses, do ten designs with roses, but do something different each time. Maybe I'll do a series of water-spotted water marble designs.

What do you think of this design?

08 May 2013

Seven Deadly Sins Challenge, Day 5: Greed

Hi everyone! I'm still standing when it comes to this challenge, sort of! ;) Yesterday was a big day blogging wise, so I decided to take it easy for today's challenge. Here's the prompt for day five: "Go wild and use your most expensive and precious polish."


Simple damask design nail art

For today's challenge I went with a base of Dior Diva 901 from the Grand Bal 2012 Holiday collection. It's not my most expensive polish, but it's one of my more precious polishes. I'll be the first to admit that I bought this for the packaging and the luxurious look of the product.

Dior Diva 901
Dior Diva 901

Diva is a warm-toned black with a micro-shimmer that appears to have a slight olive and rose tint - it's a very unique combination. I needed three coats for full coverage. Formula-wise it went on fairly smooth, although it had a bit of a gritty texture - perhaps because of the shimmer? Unfortunately, the shimmer that is so prominent and enticing in the bottle gets lost on the nails. I wouldn't say it's my favourite black, but it holds a special place in my collection for that gorgeous bottle!



On top I did some freehand simple damask patterns using Chanel Diwali. Again, not my most expensive polish, but definitely one of my most precious - it was a birthday gift from my mother and step-father (thanks guys!). Poor them, little do they know that I've already started compiling my birthday wish-list for this year, and I'm a December baby! Lol! :P

Simple damask design nail art

Simple damask design nail art

I really love Diwali, and I should probably show a swatch of this sometime. It's a beautiful, shimmery gold with great coverage. I love that, for a gold, it's not very yellow in tone. Unfortunately both Diva and Diwali were limited edition and no longer available, so eBay would be your best bet for finding these.

Now that I've rambled on plenty, I will wrap up this blog post. I didn't use my most expensive polish, and I don't know if I went wild with this design, but somehow I think I fulfilled today's challenge.

What do you think of today's design? How would you take on the theme of greed? :)

30 March 2013

Paisley and Gradients with Cult Nails 2nd Anniversary Collection

Hi everyone! Happy Good Friday / Easter weekend if you celebrate! Cult Nails is currently having a nail art contest. If you are interested you might want to check out their Facebook page ASAP as I believe there's only one day left to enter. I thought the contest would be the perfect opportunity to challenge myself with something new and break out the Cult Nails 2nd Anniversary collection that I bought awhile back.

(L-R) Cult Nails Tempest, Blaze, and Fetish

For this design I used only the three polishes that were part of the collection - Blaze, Fetish and Tempest. My accent nail is a simple sponged glitter gradient using Fetish and Blaze. On the other fingers I started with a sponged gradient using Fetish and Tempest. Then I did all the black lines and details with a fine liner brush. After that I did the white lines with the same liner brush, and the white dots with a very fine dotting tool. I finished with a few accents using Blaze and the same fine dotting tool.

Paisley and gradients nail art

Paisley and gradients nail art

Let me know if you have any questions about this design or how I did it. It looks rather complicated, but it's not. It was very time consuming, especially with the fine detail lines. For the lines, I tend to do a very light line then go over it once or twice more. I find there's less errors, and if I make a mistake, it's easier to fix. I also use nail polish thinner to make the polish more fluid while working. For now this seems to be working well.

Paisley and gradients nail art

A bit about the 2nd Anniversary collection:

Blaze is a very fine gold and copper glitter in a clear base. You could wear this one on it's own with 2-3 coats, but I prefer it layered over another polish. The formula on this one is great. My only concern is that I ended up with a wonky brush. I'm glad it's not one of the other polishes, and hopefully I can fix it.

Fetish is a jet black with a wax finish. By wax finish I mean it's not completely matte, but has a nice sheen to it. However, adding top coat negates the wax finish, so you need to wear this one without. I found it applied so perfect and smooth with two coats. I was so impressed that the finish was flawless, and I wouldn't have a problem wearing this without top coat.

Tempest is a pure white creme. What sets this apart from other whites is the superior formula. It goes on very creamy and smooth, and it's perfectly self-leveling. This was two coats but it's almost a one-coater. This one is going to compete with my Sally Hansen White On as my go-to white for nail art.

Paisley and gradients nail art

Paisley and gradients nail art

Overall, I'm happy with the design, even if no one votes for me during the contest. It's one of those designs where up close I can see all the imperfections (which are of course magnified by the camera), but when I'm looking at it while typing up this blog post, I'm so completely satisfied with it. The paisley is like little miniature paintings on my nails and I love looking at the variations and details.

What do you think of this? Have you tried paisley designs? Did you get the Cult Nails collection?
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