Wednesday, October 30, 2013

HITS Mari Moon Super Cute!! - and it IS

Long spans of time between posts unfortunately seems to have become the norm rather than the exception for me. :-/  I do not like feeling like blogging is a chore, but lets admit it, we all have that feeling sometimes!  So I guess I just have to push through it and DO a post whether I'm all "in the mood" for it or not. :P  I think I'm gonna do something sliiightly  different and let the pictures doing the talking for the most part - because they speak volumes about this polish!

Nail polish acne! Naacne?  Eeeeew. :(

I used one coat of Super Cute over two coats of Color Club Revvvolution because I figured some holo on holo action can't hurt!  And Revvvolution is a good charcoal color so that helps intensify the color shift because not only is Super Cute a linear holo, it is also stunning multichrome as I'm sure you can see. :)  There are flashes of turquoisey teal, cool violet, warm violet, and a medium/pale blue.
The accent nail is Hare Polish Neon Palm from their late summer collection, I believe?  I LOVE Neon Palm and I think it goes beautifully with Super Cute. :)  Both are Llarowe purchases; Super Cute from my very first order and Neon Palm from my most recent. 
I do apologize for the bubbles & the nubs. :-/  This is a bit of a flashback post to before my lovely friend Abby gave me her OPI Nail Envy to try & the bubbles...well, there's no good excuse for them!  What can I say?  I couldn't wait to get this beauty on my nails!!  :P  Aaaand I probably needed to go to bed. 

Outside, with a setting sun :)
This is Neon Palm over nothing - I accidentally put Revvvolution under it on the other hand.

Good night all!  And to all a good night!  (I must be feeling a bit Christmas-y) lol :P

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Neon nailsies and a bit o' life!

Hello and Happy Saturday evening to you all!  Since I was off work on Friday and going out of town, I decided to do a "funky" mani with neons (love 'em but I feel weird wearing them to work) and attempt a technique I've never tried before but recently saw in a tutorial video on YouTube.  It did NOT turn out like I envisioned because I could not find a small enough brush. :(  But it was still kinda cool, and I enjoyed it for a couple days. :)

First of all, can I say that as much as I love the neon mint color of ChG's Highlight of My Summer, the formula is HORRENDOUS!  :O  It gets sooo streaky, and yet, giant ridges build up in other places and it's just a royal pain in the butt to get decent coverage.  I think this is three coats.  Dry time was decent at least.  The accent nails are a polish I've showed you before; Maybelline Pretty in Polka.  I love their jelly/black & white glitter polishes! Drops of Jade is also in my stash. ;) 
As you might have guessed, the technique is one-stroke brush flowers, but mine did not really turn out.  I stupidly got the white and the pink (NYC French White Tip & Sinful Colors 24/7) reversed for the first two.  I'm not even going to try to describe it, so if you want to see how the pros do it, watch this awesome video!

So, since I only have & only wanted  to show you one photo of that mess, on to "life!"

Last weekend my little brother and I made the long-ish (6 hr) trek to New Ulm, MN to visit our mom's sisters and their "kids."  We're actually all around the same brother and I both have cousins there that are the same age as us, and one that is smack dab in between us. :)  It was a really nice weekend and it felt good to finally reconnect with them.  It'd been YEARS since my brother saw that side of the family, and about 2 years since I'd been to New Ulm for a visit.  Plus it was nice to have someone to share the boring drive with - other than when he was driving like a boy and ruining my gas mileage!

Clockwise from R:  Jane (my aunt), Hannah (her daughter), me, Morgan (my brother)

Here's us having a sushi FEAST at a pretty spectacular place in Mankato. :)  Thankfully, we all enjoy sushi and so I thought lunch in the big city was in order!  Hannah had heard of this new place from a couple friends and they happened to have a $15.99/person all you can eat sushi lunch special.  I don't know how the 4 of us managed to eat only 3 rounds of 3 the most amazing crab rangoons as an appetizer - they were seriously to DIE for - like Turkish delight or something! lol
Somehow the sushi was very filling and totally delicious.  Mmmm.  Darn, now I want sushi!  :P

It was Oktoberfest while we were there - New Ulm is a very  German town, complete with a Glockenspiel & it's home to Schell's Brewery, so Saturday afternoon we walked around downtown and happened to catch the petting zoo as they were packing up...

Now that's not something you see in MN every day!  He was really cool... as we walked up, he kept saying: "Hello," and "I love you."  At least I think  that's what he was saying!  There was also a kangaroo, some other kind of big bird, a llama, a dromedary camel, and a couple other things I can't recall.  Hannah's 2-yr-old daughter was there before us with her dad, and she called her mom & kept repeating: "camel!" :D  It was pretty cute.  She knows a lot of animals for being only 2!

Now, on to TODAY!

I almost wan't going to include this, but since my friend's costume & my shirt kinda go (color-wise) with the mani I showed you, I figured meh why not!  Plus, I'm pretty excited that I did my first-ever 5k run/walk today!!! :D  Let me tell you, if someone said to high-school me (who about died every time we had to do laps for gym class) that in 10 years I'd be running a 5k of my own free will, I would have literally rolled on the floor laughing.  But, wonder of wonder, miracle of miracles; here I am...

Here's me and my lovely friend, Janette, who convinced me to do this with her!  So up until 8 days ago, I'd never really run a day in my life, other than when absolutely necessary. :P hehe
I have no idea what our exact times were (the timing device they were using kept freezing because it was so cold) but I'm guesstimating it was around 45 minutes?  And we walked a lot of it.  But I'm pretty proud of us!  It was surprisingly not nearly as bad as I thought and all my mental freaking out and worrying about being the last ones to finish was for naught.  We'll probably do another one in Fargo in May. :D

Oh, this guy greeted me this morning when I was about to sit down by my mirror to get ready.  I'll spare you the big photo!  Needless to say I got ready in the bathroom instead.

ISH.  I HATE spiders!  When my roommate got home, I had her kill it. :P  I'll usually kill them, but I was already on edge with nerves about the run. 

Have you ever accomplished something you never thought you'd do?  If so, I'd love to hear about it!  Thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoyed this post even though it wasn't all about polish. ;)

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

I concur: Alcatraz...Rocks!

Good evening!  Brr, it's gettin' cold in here, so put on lots more clothes! :P  ...yet another frigid fall evening here in Minnesota...  I really hope that perhaps some of you are lucky enough to live in places that aren't the closest thing to another ice age! ;)
Okay, it's not quite that  bad at the moment, but come January I can assure you I'll be yelling on a daily basis (as I clean a mountain of snow off my car for the millionth time): "Why on earth do I live here?!?!"

So I think that besides the ever-plummeting temperature (and the fact that I watched The Day After Tomorrow  over the weekend), this mani has me thinking about snow and ice.  See what I mean?

I hate winter, but I LOVE this!! :D  I do have to admit however, that I got the idea from Polished Elegance.  Her post confirmed that I needed Alcatraz...Rocks.  It really is a gorgeous texture polish with soooo many pretty sparkles!  Here's AR "naked":

The base has more purple in it than is showing up here, for some odd reason.  I used two coats, no base and of course, no top coat.  Although I really did want to try some over this polish because I've seen a lot of people show the other side of a texture polish once it's transformed by a glossy top coat. :)  
Compared to my Zoya & Julie G textures (and even OPI Jinx), I must say AR did not wear quite as well (4 days vs. 7 or so) before I got some noticeable tip wear and a couple decent sized chips.  Maybe next time I'll use some Orly Bonder under it.

Dry time was average, maybe 7ish minutes for it to get completely textured.  GAH those sparkles get me every time!  They're by no means holo, but oh so purty!

After wearing nakey AR for a couple days, I knew I had to try the stamping thang over it, so I busted out my Pure Ice Silver Mercedes and Bundle Monster plate 214.  Although I really like the full-size image that Polished Elegance used, this design is one of my favorites from the set I have, and it's got a similar aesthetic.  
Several of my blogger buddies have insisted lately that they could never do stamping, so I also wanted to add this to show how pretty and easy it is!  Seriously took me 10 minutes, start to finish to do both hands.  I wish I could say I have a tutorial video to show you the process, but I have never tried making one and wasn't about to start at 12:30 in the morning!  So you'll hafta settle for watching this one; the video that sparked my addiction to all things nail related. ;)  For reals!

Oy, speaking of 12:30 am, it's nearly that time again so I really need to get to bed before my under-eye craters get any deeper & darker - if that's possible! :-/  For everyone's sake, I sure hope not! :P

I leave you with a parting shot:

Have fun, be merry, and stamp like your life depends on it!!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Birds of a feather flock to...Orly fOWL Play!

I did this post as a guest post a number of months ago for Guilty As Charged in her absence, but she had some issues with the scheduling feature so I just figured I might share it here on my own blog as well, in case you guys missed it, and because I will be out of town this weekend with positively no  time to do a post. :-/  So I really hope this isn't considered "bad blogger form!"  I just l♥ve this mani and could share it over & over again! LOL

My original mani plan ended up having an element that just would not work, so after going back over the ideas I'd had for this post, I decided this one was much more fitting anyways, since Haleigh's blog features such great nail art.  I hope mine is worthy of being here!  I give you Fowl Play:

I cannot even tell you how excited I was to find out that OPI's Merry Midnight has an almost exact dupe.  I wanted MM after seeing only one photo of it, but when I discovered it was going for upwards of $25 on eBay, I was quite sad.  Then along came a comparison post (or several!) with Orly Fowl Play, and with some trepidation, I headed back over to eBay.  This time however, I was overjoyed to find I could get my dream polish for only $5!!!  Mmmm...just feast your eyes on that vampy purple, flaky, sparkly, rainbow-y goodness!  

Being a huge fan of plays on words, I had a "liiiightbulb" moment and realized that freehanding an owl as an accent nail would mean I could entitle my post Fowl Play! ;-) hehehe

Isn't he a cute 'lil guy?!  :-D  I think he needs a name...any ideas?  
Mr. Unnamed Owl is composed of Zoya Reagan, Sinful Colors My Buoyfriend, Zoya Arizona, and just any old black & white for the eyes, against a background of OPI Can't Find My Czechbook.  The color combos are truly endless, which is super fun!  :-)  I don't actually have a nail art brush set, but a detail brush from my roommate's set of craft brushes (from Wal-Mart) worked just fine.  I also used a pin - yes, A PIN - for the beak & the dots on the owl's body, as well as the black pupil & the teensy, infinitesimal, tiny, microscopic white glint on the pupil.

In case you were curious, I did end up doing my right hand because I really want to be able to wear this mani for a few days, so I had to at least attempt to make my hands match!  He's a tad...deformed, but still loveable. :-)  OH!  I almost forgot - the branches are China Glaze Ingrid.  Pretty much the only brown I have in my stash.  And of course, it has a fine gold shimmer in it, so my apologies, but Houston, we have a sparkly branch!

The application of all these polishes was really great.  Ok, yes, I used most of them in minute quantities, but I was glad to see they were all very opaque as there was a lot of layering going on!  This is only two coats of Fowl Play.  I think I would classify it as a couple-shades-lighter-than-eggplant purple jelly base, but it's highly pigmented, so the coverage is great - as is the drying time.  I've had SO many issues with bubbling cremes lately, so this was quite a welcome relief.

If any of you have read my blog, you know I'm very long-winded, and I'm sure I could continue on about this mani, but I feel I've kept you long enough, especially since this is a guest post!  I leave you with one final shot:

Thank you so much for reading!  I hope this inspires you to be creative & boldly go where you've never gone before...on your nails. ;-)  Or in life.

~ Emily :-)

Monday, October 7, 2013

Fall has - fallen!! Butter LONDON Brown Sugar

If spring has sprung every year, than I guess fall has fallen, right? ;)  Well even if that's not right, I'm still saying it! LOL

Ahhh I'm apparently in a goofy mood yet again tonight!  Chatting with a passel of awesome people does that to you. :)  I've just "met" Claudia, the lovely lady behind a brand-new blog, idreamofpolish. She already has some really perfect swatches up - I wish mine  had looked that good at the beginning!!
Anyways, we spent most of Saturday chatting and let me tell you, she's an incredible person.  It blows my mind how I've met so many lovely people simply through buying polish from their sale, and then we get to chatting. :)  I can't WAIT to show you the polishes I got from Claudia - and I don't have to, because they're ALREADY HERE!!! :O  I about DIED when I came home today and saw a bubble mailer for me.  I'm soooo excited to add a Posh Bird from London and some Vice of the Illamasqua variety to the 'ol stash!! :D  Thanks a million, Claudia!

Anyhoo, back to the mani at hand! heehee

Butter London Brown Sugar

I give you some of the prettiest Brown Sugar I've ever seen!  This is two tasty coats of this amazingness, and when I took these photos, I believe I'd had it on for two or three days, with OPI Nail Envy as both the base and top coat.

Butter London Brown Sugar

As you can see - and I was surprised to discover - Brown Sugar has a lovely rich wine colored jelly-like base, absolutely filled to the brim with gold and coppery shimmer, as well as small, delicate gold and rose gold hexes. She's a total stunner, people!! ;)
I probably should've done three coats because the jelly base did lend itself to a bit of patchiness.  Also, I was in a hurry to get this done and get to bed, so of course it bubbled, BUT - another reason I ♥ this polish - it seems to disguise bubbles quite well amid the dense shimmer and thin hexes. It's got my impatient back! ;)

Butter London Brown Sugar
Why do they have to print that code on the back of the bottle?! Totally destroys the aesthetic.

Application was very smooth and well, butter-like!  My only issue was the weird was cut up at an angle on one side, so a bunch of the bristles were are all different lengths.  But interestingly enough, if I held it a certain way, it laid like a normal was just a pain to make sure I had it "right!"  I got this at Ulta (during their September calendar sale - one day only, $10 BL's) & didn't keep the receipt, so I don't think I have any hopes of exchanging it.  Not to mention, my Ulta is 2 hours away. :-/

Butter London Brown Sugar

Ahh this polish is SO gorgeous!!  Just feast your eyes on all of that brilliance from the light bouncing off all those gold shimmers & glitters!
Brown Sugar is everything I love about fall: warm, cozy, beautiful, and hearkens to the delightful, spiced fall scents we get from places like Bath & Body Works (another major addiction I have).
I honestly had never even seen this one on any blog before, but as I was perusing the display - more like picking up every single bottle to make sure I was fully aware of all of my options - and got my mitts on Brown Sugar, I believe I exclaimed out loud: "WHOA. I need this!" :P  LOL  And the rest is history. ;)

Good night, peeps!!  I hope you've enjoyed this tasty fall treat!