Thursday, May 31, 2012

Sheer Enchantment

Today I have something old, but new to me.  I found this on Monday sitting on a clearance table outside a salon.  This is "Sheer Enchanment" from the OPI 2003 Sheer Romance collection.  I picked it up and the bottle looked a bit worn and nasty.  I had never seen this color before.  It looks like it might just add a touch of sparkle to any polish despite the yellowish base.  I tried Googling it, but found minimal information.  In the sun, the pinkish glitter twinkles like crazy.  I have yet to try it over any polish.  I will definitely write a post when I do.

My Private Jet

Okay, I know everyone has seen this swatched a hundred times over.  This (of course) is the non holo version of OPIs "My Private Jet" from the Night Bright collection that also included "Give Me The Moon" and "OPI Ink".  I like both versions of this polish.  They are two completely different colors and should have had different names
Tonight I felt in the mood for a darker, nonsummer color.  I decided on MPJ.  It reminds me of a light rainy night sky in the city.  The way that the red and yellow lights reflect off the soft rain drops.  Haha, talk about imagination running wild.  This version of MPJ has a soft sparkle in the reddish brown base.  My bottle is runny and making a mess of my cuticles. Looks like I painted my nails with my eyes closed.   I'm using two coats, even though I could get away with only one.

This is showing up as charcoal, but it is actually brown.
Before I went to sleep, I rubbed vitamin E into my cuticles.  The next morning, cleanup was very minimal.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Salon Express

I've never actually seen an infomerical for this.  It's been popping up all over the stores.  I wasn't going to buy it since I'm waiting for the new Bundle Monster plates and have a bunch of the Konad plates.  There was one on the shelf at Ross's.  I was surprised to see it there and grabbed it right away. I'm happy with my purchase.  The plates are really cute and now I have an extra stamper and plate. 

The plate holder is rubber, not plastic.  I always toss the scraper and use an old gift card
so I don't scratch the plates.

These designs are narrow and (unless you have tiny nails) will not be a full design.

A turtle design. Woohoo!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Hello Kitty Nails

 This is one of my recently inspired maniures.  My bathroom theme is Hello Kitty and Dial has a Hello Kitty foam hand soap.  As I was looking at it one day while brushing my teeth, I thought this would make a cute manicure. 

I started with 2 coats of "Flower to Flower" from OPIs Summer Flutter. There is a silver shine in this pink that sets it apart from any other creme pink. I used a French tip white from Sally Hansen and Konad plate m79 to stamp the dots.  The tips are OPI "Paint My Moji-toes Red".  This is a red-orange creme that goes on very smooth.  I've worn this color on my toes, but haven't used it on my fingers other than as an accent color.  Maybe this summer I'll give this polish the attention it deserves. 
At Target, I found the Hello Kitty nail decals for around $2.  It came with a tiny bottle of polish.  The nail stickers didn't adhere very well, even though I used 2 coats of Sally Hansen Quick dry top coat to seal it.  

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Sally Hansen Electric Emerald and Nabi Khaki

Here are the other 2 swatches of my magnetic polishes.  The first one is Sally Hansen Electric Emerald.  The formula was good-not runny or thick.  Dry time was fast.  It was opaque in one coat. The bottle suggests only 1 coat.  I used the magnet that came with it on my pinkie.  The other 3 are the China Glaze magnet designs.  I'm not into the chevron.  

This is Nabi magnetic in Khaki.  This polish formula was thinner than all the others.  I still used only 1 coat for a better magnet design.  As with Electric Emerald, I used the Sally Hansen magnet on my pinkie and China Glaze on the rest.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

China Glaze Magnetix

The magnetix polishes are finally available in my location.  Yeah! I picked up two colors for around $10 each and ordered the magnet on Amazon.  Even the Sally Hansen Magnetic polishes have arrived at my local Target this past Sunday.  I expected the display to be empty when I went to Target on Monday, but only two bottles of the blue were missing.  It was advertised for $9.99 and it comes with a removable magnet.  Someone had given me my Nabi magnetic three months ago.  I'm not sure where they got it from, I've never seen this brand anywhere. 

L-R  Nabi Khaki, CG Drawn to You, CG Pull Me Close, SH Electric Emerald

This is the Nabi magnet.  It's hard to use because it doesn't have a finger rest.
The image doesn't wrap around the nail.  I'm thinking it's because it is hard to keep the magnet
steady.  I've bumped the magnet a few times at you can see.  Also, because the magnet was attached to the brush, it delayed the application of the magnet.  If I took too long to place the magnet on, the image wouldn't show at all.

My CG magnet arrived yesterday.  Now I have all designs available (including the wavy
design on the Sally Hansen magnet).

The finger rest on the magnets made it easy to use.  The strength was about the
same as the Sally Hansen magnet.  Having the three designs on one plate is convenient.
This is the Nabi and Sally Hansen magnet .  I think if Nabi had the same design, it would
work just as well as CG and Sally Hansen. 

Another plus for Sally Hansen was having the magnet be removable.  Very easy to use.

Bottom line: Sally Hansen and China Glaze magnets are equally as good in strength.  China Glaze has 3 designs and SH only has the one wavy design available.  I like the effect that the wavy design creates vs. the chevron.  The image is crisper and has a better 3D effect.  I keep all magnets on for 25 seconds allowing the polish to dry and then blowing on the nail immediately after.  If the magnet gets removed to quickly, the metal particles sink back down and blur the image.  I also finish with a quick dry top coat like SH Quick Dry top coat or Seche Vite Dry Fast top coat. 

Okay, now I have some China Glaze Magnetix swatches.  The CG formula is slightly thicker than Nabi or SH.  Application is smooth.  I found it opaque with just one coat like the bottle suggests.  I tried using 2 coats at first (force of habit), but the design wasn't as crisp as with the single coat.   I've never used a base coat, so I can't say how that affects the design.

First up is "Drawn to You", a purple with silver metal particles.  Keep in mind that bottle colors are different than that on the nail due to the combination of pigment and metal.  Once the color separates, the base color darkens. 

I used the Nabi magnet (it was the only one I had at the time).  I redid my pointer
3 times because it kept bumping the magnet. 

The polish chipped in about a day.  It was my fault.  I didn't wrap my nail first (paint from tip to cuticle and then paint from cuticle to tip).  I was trying to work fast to get the best magnet effect.

I want to try this color again using the SH and CG magnets.

Next up is "Pull Me Close".  This is my favorite magnetic polish.  Hands down from all four that I own.  This blue/light blue contrast brings attention to the design of the magnet.  I was surprised how the cadet blue darkened to a deeper shade creating a bold contrast.  The image looked like it was moving.  A result of the shifting reflection of the metal.  I used the wavy design from Sally Hansen.  My CG magnet was delivered as soon as I had just finished doing this manicure.

At first, I was placing my nail over the magnet and the polish itself started shifting and dripping
toward the magnet. It works best when the magnet is placed over the nail instead.

I can't wait to try the other magnet designs with this color. 

That's it for this post.  As I was writing this, I swatched  SH Electric Emerald on my right hand and Nabi Khaki on my left.  I can't wait to take pictures and post those up as well.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Cuticle Care

May 22, 2012 Update:
It's been only three days and my cuticles are much better.  Using the pure Vitamin E really helps.  I also picked up a nonacetone remover.  I was told that using pure acetone poisons your inner body.  It absorbs through your cuticles and is not healthy.  I don't know the details but that was enough for me to switch removers.  It takes longer with the nonacetone to remove polish and feels a little sticky.  I'm going to think twice before applying any glitter polish.  I can't imagine removal-even with using the foil method.  At least now I'm on my way to healthier cuticles. 

It's the end of the day and I wanted to do one more post before I go to sleep. All day I've been nursing my cuticles with Neosporin and Vitamin E. I wash my hands a lot and had to reapply frequently. My cuticles are really messed up at the moment. I use cuticle oil daily and still my cuticles got wrecked. I change my polish every few days with Acetone remover, I don't always wear rubber gloves when I use household cleaners, and of course there are always dishes to wash. Even laundry seems to dry out my fingers. I had gotten 3 hangnails this past week. I nipped them with cuticle scissors and cut them too short. Result-swollen, sore cuticles. Two days ago,, I started using Vitamin E. Today, I applied Neosporin about four times. No nipping cuticles ever again. If anyone has a better idea for cuticle care (products, routines), please let me know.
OPI Avoplex is my daily oil.  I picked up the Sally Hansen
"Healthy Cuticles Now!" cream
when my cuticles started drying out.

I paid around $6 and was annoyed to find that the jar wasn't even filled.
I went back into exchange it (I had opened the jar in the car).  All of them were like this. 
Right now I'm just using pure Vitamin E 28,000 I.U. and Neosporin.
(Both were already in my medicine cabinet)

This is my fingers in recovery.  My ring finger is still swollen.

I'm wearing OPI I Pink I Love You. Since I'm taking a break from frequent polish
change, I alternated white and silver shatter to change it up a little.  This is my
official recovery nail look. = )  I find the color combo soothing to look at.  I'm weird like

I like this color so much, I might actually use it all up.  It doesn't help that
its a 3 coat polish.

Friday, May 18, 2012

ocean nails

I had been wanting to do an ocean manicure since I received my Konad
Zodiac plates  m33 and m34  last month.  I love anything ocean related (mythical mermaids included) and was excired to finally do it.  It finally stopped raining and the weather has been hot all week. Today we got to go to the beach for an end of the year program event.  It really feels like summer is starting.  Today at the beach, I got an idea for a watermelon mani.  My daughter has a watermelon bikini, she was eating watermelon, and I had watermelon slippers on.  One of these days I will do it.  I've been getting nail art inspirations from all over lately and have been writing them down.  Last night I got an idea from the hand soap bottle in the bathroom and earlier this week from a gift wrap design.  So many ideas. not enough hands.  My cuticles are wreaked at the moment from overuse of acetone.  I need to take a break from fresh manis and let my cutiles heal.  They are hurting. 
This is 2 coats of Essie Turquoise and Caicos.
My bottle wasn't streaky or runny as some others had problems
with it.  Maybe it's because of the humidity here. The first coat was thin, but the
second coat was perfect.  I'm starting to like this color better than my OPI
Mermaids Tears that stains my nails.

I added 2 coats of OPI Fiercely Fiona to my tips.  It's a tricky
polish to work with due to it's streaky formula.  This is
one of my favorite polishes.  It's a good base color for stamping.

I used a small paintbrush for the seaweed and
coral.  The green seaweed  is a Konad polish and the coral
is Sally Hansen X-treme Wear  Coral Reef (I thought it was a
fitting name) 

I used Konad plate m27 for the seahorse and fish, and m33 for the crab.  I redid
my pinkie 3 times before I gave up and left it as is.  The stamp just didn't want to transfer.
I used dotting tools for the crabs eyes.  The crab was filled in with and INK
nail art polish.  I was so focused on painting within the image, that I 
didn't notice the bead of polish running down the long brush until it puddled on my nail.
I tried to clean it up with a q-tip and managed to salvage the image.

The mermaid is Konad plate m34.  I used Konad black special polish.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Save Me

Here is a polish that I passed up on in January.  This is "Save Me" from OPIs Nicki Minaj collection. Each polish is named after one of her songs. I finally saw it in person and had to get it..  Its a fun glitter, full of holographic bar glitter and silver glitter.  One coat is good for layering, add a second coat for full coverage. 

Save Me sparkles like crazy in thr sun.  Very flashy when I'm driving.
It was a little too flashy for me and I removed it within a couple days.
Removal was fairly easy, although there was some stray glitter stuck to
my skin.

This initially was "Into The Night" with "Save Me" layered over.
I wanted more of the bar glitter effect and ended up covering the blue.
I used Konad stamp plate S1 for the rose image.

This is the album cover to Nicki Minaj's single "Save Me".  She is a very
colorful  person and I think the colors in this collection represent her fairly well.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Into The Night (The Amazing Spiderman)

 I actually picked up one of the OPI Amazing Spiderman shades.  This is "Into The Night".  It's a beautiful frost/shimmer.  In the bottle, it reminds me of satin.  This is 2 coats.  The first coat was sheer, but the second coat made it opaque.  Application was smooth.  I wasn't going to get any of the colors because I thought they weren't that unique.  When I walked in the salon, this blue caught my eye.  Pictures cannot capture the glow of this polish.  It's my new favorite blue.  I want to wear this all the time. 
 This collection has a green shatter.  It represents the lizard and just didn't seem right to pair it with this blue.  I picked up Red Shatter instead.  This looks more Spiderman to me.  It's a fast, easy manicure that I really like.  The red shatter went on smooth and it cracked nicely.  It has the consistency of black shatter.  My white, teal, and silver do not shatter this well.  The white is thicker, the teal and silver do not show that much of the color beneath.  There are other colors that I want to use the red over and I will do a "Red Shatter" Spam Post when I get around to trying all my combos.  Just when I thought I was over the whole crackle/shatter trend, this red got me excited all over again.

The Comic Book Version