Saturday, April 30, 2016

HPB Present Dusty Pastel Gradient

Hey hey hey! It's a Saturday and while I normally don't post on Saturdays, I need to squeak one more post in-- for the monthly Hobby Polish Bloggers monthly nail art round up! The theme for this month is Dusty Colors and for awhile I was stumped, mainly because no polishes sprang to mind and I was dreading having to search through my stash for something to use. And then I stumbled across a display of the new Sinful Colors Porcelain Mattes and grabbed them all (of course!) and I thought these fit the bill. I would call them dusty pastels-- they certainly aren't bright and have a certain muted quality to them that I associate with the term "dusty."

First I applied two coats of Glazy Sunday, which is a "delicate dusty rose." (Look, even has dusty in the description!). Then I applied a liquid latex barrier-- this is seriously a game changer when it comes to doing gradients. Then I sponged on Glazy Sunday, Cheshire China (a light lavender) and 
She's Gone Matte (a mint green). Because they were mattes, they were thicker which meant they were easy to sponge and not too sheer. I was worried the polish might dry too quickly but that wasn't a problem! Here's the finished product:

I am so proud of this gradient! I know I have done gradients before, but I feel like this is my best one yet. Practice makes perfect!I wore this for probably four days, which is really unusual for me (usually every mani is 2 days) and it was hard to remove it. Couldn't have turned out better if I had wanted it too! This is the first time I've used the latex barrier and will definitely do so every time I do a gradient in the future. Hope you enjoyed this manicure!

Friday, April 29, 2016

Girly Bits More Cowbell

I have also had this polish kicking around for awhile (because I'm a terrible person). And it's even another Girly Bits polish! Today I have More Cowbell, which was actually from the 2013 Fall collection-- the whole collection was inspired by TV shows and in particular, this polish was inspired by the famous Chistopher Walken "more cowbell" sketch on SNL. (And if you haven't seen this, please go watch it ASAP!) I think I picked up this polish when it was on sale at Girly Bits because they were retiring it, so unfortunately it's unavailable now. (Though it is still available for sale at Harlow & Co if you decide you can't live without it.)

More Cowbell is described as a "steel blue gray with tightly scattered holo with blue iridescent flakies." I initially thought the blue flakies were microglitters, but I need to go back and look at my bottle to be 100% sure. They are lost in my photos, unfortunately, but they do add some nice depth to this polish. I wore this back in December, so I honestly don't remember a whole lot about it, other than that I don't recall having any issues. I am pretty sure I used three coats here, though most likely you could get away with two.

I am so in love with this polish. This is probably the type of holo finish I love the most-- the soft wash of holo that gives it such a warm, glowy look. I wish I could find real paint like this! But anyway, I digress. I'm so glad I picked up this polish because it's gorgeous and the finish is basically everything I want. Love love love it!

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Daily Hues Nail Lacquer Out With the Bold

And we're back to purple today! This is the second half of the Daily Hues New Years duo, Out With the Bold. This is described as a "light rustic purple with shimmer and linear holo." It's definitely a purple but has a strong silver shimmer and tone to it. Unfortunately, this ends up giving Out With the Bold a frosty finish, something not well loved by most in the world of nail polish. Confession: I actually think there are people out there who can make frosty polishes look good-- I am NOT one of these people. I did struggle with this polish a bit. 

Out With the Bold was definitely a touch on the thick side, but due to the heavy shimmer it acts like a metallic and dries pretty quickly. I found it hard to eliminate the frosty streaks so after I applied two coats and was getting annoyed for having thought I could have dealt with this polish, I decided it was time to implement a fix-it strategy. So I grabbed a makeup sponge and sponged on a final layer to even out the streaks and frostiness and it worked!! The soft holo finish is still present but the streaks are gone and it looks much more appealing!

I think Out With the Bold is a pretty polish, buuuuut it ended up being a lot frostier than I wanted (and I did know there would be some frostiness when I bought it). I was able to salvage my manicure by sponging on the last layer and it doesn't look too bad, but I think that's the only thing that saved it. Perhaps if you have more patient polishing skills than I do, but I couldn't take it. It's a little bit of a bummer, though the finished product looks decent and the other half out the duo is good, so I guess it balances out in the end.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Mango Bunny Minter Wonderland

Look, here's the green I was talking about! This is actually a polish from Mango Bunny's winter collection, called Minter Wonderland. If you can't guess from the name (but I bet you can!), this is a mint polish. It also has a soft holographic finish. While a mint green isn't the first color that springs to mind when thinking of winter, I actually think it works. This is kind of a cool mint, which brings to mind words like "wintergreen" or "winter mint"... or gum, which is apparently where my mind goes as well, hah. In any case, this is a very pretty polish!

This polish was pretty easy apply, though not perfect. I found I needed a light touch, otherwise Minter Wonderland wanted to drag and be a bit streaky. I ended up using three thin coats to achieve the look I wanted. It wasn't terrible, though not the best I've ever encounter. Not too much to complain about, though!

 So, so pretty! While I am not a huge fan of greens, and mints can be hard to pull off (lobster hands, etc) but I really liked this one. It maybe made my fingers a bit red, but I generally don't care about stuff like that. I guess the color isn't all that unique with all the holos that are currently out there but I like the softer holo finish and I'm happy to have it in my collection!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Zoya Aster

This week we're kind of on a purple kick (though I have some blues and green you'll see later!) so today I've got another polish from the Zoya Petals collection. This is Zoya Aster, which is described as a "fresh periwinkle with flecks of fuchsia to create a dewy finish, mimicking the look of spring flowers in the morning." Aster has the same iridescent shimmer that both Zahara and Azalea do, just in a purple base!

The formula of Aster was similar to that of Zahara and Azalea. It was a little thick, but applied fairly easily. I believe I still used three coats to ensure that I had the coverage I wanted, but you could probably get away with just two depending on your nails and how you like to apply your polish. Otherwise, I didn't have issues applying it! 

Gorgeous! This is definitely one of my favorites from this collection; of course, I love that it's a purple-- can never go wrong with that! The shimmer really elevate this polish and adds a lot of dimension to the polish. Aster is a winner for me!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Girly Bits What Happens in Vegas... Ends up on Snapchat

Hey look, another brand I haven't posted about in awhile! I don't know why I don't have more Girly Bits polishes, honestly. They are a tried and true indie brand and consistently have great collections (and beautiful polishes) so I really need to rectify that situation. But the ones I do have are great! This is another exclusive polish to the 2015 One Night in Vegas collection. Confession: I don't actually use Snapchat. It makes me feel old! Hahaha...! But it is the social media app of today! And I enjoy other people's Snapchats, so keep it up people!

What Happens in Vegas... Ends Up on Snapchat is described as a "light silvery lilac linear holographic polish, accented with holographic microglitter." In my mind I have this as a pink, but nope, it's definitely purple. Given that it's been a really, really, really long time since I wore this, I've forgotten a lot of things-- mainly, anything about the formula! Knowing Girly Bits, I probably only needed two coats and I doubt I had any trouble with it. I had also forgotten how strong the holo effect was! I am now feeling the need to dig this out and wear it again! The microglitter does get a little lost in my photos, but you might be able to see a few specks! With Daily Hues Adele from last week, and another polish I will show you later this week-- I am really digging holos with microglitter! The microglitter adds a nice dimension to the polish rather than just being a standard holo.

This is such a pretty polish and the formula is great! I wish my pictures were a bit better, so I guess that's another reason to find this polish and wear it again. This was a limited edition polish so unfortunately it's not available anymore but there are tons of other gorgeous Girly Bits polishes available for you to peruse if you haven't tried the brand yet!

Friday, April 22, 2016

Daily Hues Nail Lacquer Adele

To wrap up my week of pink polishes, today I have a polish from Daily Hues Nail Lacquer: Adele. I'm not sure when this polish was released, but I picked it up around Black Friday because there was a discount code or sale. But when I received my order, this was the very first polish I decided to wear because it was so, so gorgeous in the bottle. Luckily, it did not disappoint on the nail either!

Adele is described as a "pink tinted linear holo, with matching pink holo glitters throughout." Check and check! I would say that Adele is a sweet pink that isn't overly pink, if that makes sense? I don't know, it's not in your face but you know it's pink; without the flash it's kind of a nice neutral pink that's very easy to wear. I initially wore this back in December, so I can't remember much about applying it (I should really start taking notes again) but I don't recall having any issues at all. In all likelihood I used three coats, because that is usually my go-to number to make sure I have enough coverage. Let's look at some pictures!

Sigh, it's so pretty, isn't it?! I'll be honest, the first time I tried Daily Hues (with the Seahawks trio), I was not very impressed with the polish. It was pretty enough but also pretty sheer and just ok in terms of formula. However, I think Jenn (the owner) has gone through and revamped her business and polishes and since then I have featured other Daily Hues polishes on my blog and have been much more satisfied with my experience. Adele definitely made me a believer and I freaking love it! I think Adele is on my list as one of my favorite pink polishes ever!

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Nine Zero Lacquer January 2016

Today I have a brand that I have featured once before, though it's been since Thanksgiving! As part of my pink themed week, today I have a polish from Nine Zero Lacquer: January 2016 is part of a monthly series of polishes that were limited edition and only available for the month it was released-- but now Jessica has decided to make them available all year round! So if you like any of the ones that I have been released so far, you have until the end of the year to get them. January 2016 is described as a "berry holographic with holographic silver microglitter added in for extra sparkle." It's a beautiful deep berry pink with a nice holographic finish!

As far as I can remember, the formula of January 2016 was good. It was decently pigmented, though it did have a slightly thinner consistency and I used three coats to get the coverage I wanted-- as per usual, this is more due to my giant nail beds-- with smaller or shorter nails, you could probably get away with two coats! But it goes on easily and is super holographic!

This is a truly lovely polish! So far I have been impressed with the Nine Zero Lacquer polishes I have tried and am definitely a fan of the brand and look forward to using more of their polishes!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Mango Bunny Berry Delicious

Today I have the November Polish of the Month from Mango Bunny. This is a polish from their former subscription service: they used to offer sub boxes, but have now switched to a monthly limited edition polish. Berry Delicious is a deep raspberry pink polish with a ton of gold shimmer in it. This feels like the fall/winter edition of their summer neons, and is a welcome addition to my collection because it's just such a lovely polish.

Again, I'm blogging this months after I actually wore it but I don't recall having any issues with this. If anything, it was probably a touch on the thick side, but not so much so that it was difficult to apply. I am pretty sure I used two coats here, though it's possible I added a third for good measure.

This polish is a big hit with me. With a berry toned shade, this shade feels appropriate for autumn and Thanksgiving without treading too far into holiday/Christmas red territory. But honestly, it's pretty for any time of the year! Definitely one of my favorite polishes from Mango Bunny!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Love Angeline Champagne

Today I have another polish I picked up from Love Angeline, also from the Let's Grab a Drink collection-- today we're breaking out the bubbly and having some Champagne! (Or as Zapp Brannigan would say "cham-pagan"!) Champagne is a gorgeous deep pink with a very strong blue shimmer, and bonus, it dries to a matte finish!

Unlike Shandy, sadly, I found the formula on Champagne to be a bit more difficult to work with. It was a little on the thicker side, but also had an almost jelly-like feel to it, so when I was applying it there was some patchiness and I didn't get it completely even looking. I used three coats in my photos below. I feel like I almost could have used a fourth coat, because I felt it was still a bit patchy, but three was enough to make me feel okay.

The finished product is definitely gorgeous, though even at three coats Champagne was still a bit uneven and could have used a fourth one. The next time I wear this I will probably also apply my first coat(s) a little more carefully, which might help. I think this color is currently retired from the Love Angeline line up, so sorry about that if you really love it!

Monday, April 18, 2016

Zoya Azalea

I am feeling the pink this week, so all my posts going to feature pink polishes this week! Today I'm starting with another Zoya from the Petals collection. Azalea is described as a "classic spring pink with a captivating white and fuchsia flash." Yes indeed! This has the same opalescent shimmer that you is in Zahara.

The formula of Azalea is very similar to Zahara-- it's a little on the thick side and a little sheer, though builds up easily. I would say it is more opaque than Zahara.  It wasn't very hard to apply, though I did have to use three coats for the opacity I wanted. But otherwise, no issues to report!

I think this is so pretty! I don't wear pinks very often, but sometimes I just want to indulge in my girly side and a pink fits the bill! Azalea is the perfect pink for spring; bright and cheerful!

Friday, April 15, 2016

NvrEnuff Polish Appetite For Love

Let's finish out the week of another splash of color, this time from the pink/red color family! I also have a new-to-me brand to share with you today. Today I have half of the Valentine's Day duo collaboration that Nvr Enuff Polish and Fairytale Finish put together-- I am a big fan of Fairytale Finish (obviously) so I decided to jump on this duo. I was conveniently craving a pink/red color after this arrived, and so I decided to go with the brand I hadn't worn before!

Appetite for Love is a gorgeous cerise holographic. The formula was great, and went on very smoothly and easily, as these colors tend to do. Honestly, there has to be something about this pigment-- basically every version of this color is a dream to apply. It applied very easily and wasn't too thick or too thin. It was a little on the jellyish side, which I also find common for this color family, but built up nicely with no issues. I used three coats here.

Beautiful, isn't she? While I like this polish, I have to say I was a bit disappointed on the customer service end with this  polish. I ordered this duo back at the end of January and then completely forgot about it because I never received a shipping notice or anything-- I only remembered I had ordered it when I saw other people posting pictures on Facebook and Instagram! I'm also pretty sure my package showed up after Valentine's Day, which kind of defeats the purpose. Now, I didn't have time to reach out to the makers (and my package showed up pretty much right after I remembered I had actually ordered it) so maybe if I had they would have sent me more info. Hard to say, but the turn around time was much longer than I expected and the lack of communication was a bit unnerving. But it all worked out again; perhaps that was just the nature of purchasing a collaboration set. The polish itself is great, so I would definitely be interested in checking out Nvr Enuff polish again in the future. 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Colors by Llarowe All Jack'd Up

Hey all! Today I have another fun splash of color to share with you! Do you ever have color cravings? Sometimes I get to a point where I really want to wear a particular color on my nails and this time it was orange! I can't remember the last time I wore an orange polish! Green may be the color everyone associates with March, but I wanted orange-- yes, I know we're into April now, but I did wear this back in March. I find I have a fickle relationship when it comes to orange nail polish. On the one hand (see what I did there?!) I love how cheerful it is, and it usually is an unexpected pop of color. On the other hand, I often find it difficult to coordinate orange polish with my outfits, so I usually don't end up wearing it for very long (though honestly, most of my manicures only last about 2-3 days anyway). But I had a craving for orange and knew immediately which polish I wanted to use!

Colors by Llarowe All Jack'd Up is from their Halloween duo (long sold out, sorry about that) and is a cheerful medium orange (what I would call citrus orange) with a soft holo finish. It had been sitting around in my giant pile of untried polishes and now was the time! It is a little on the sheer side, though it has a nice smooth formula (perhaps a bit thinner than some CbL's tend to be, though not in a bad way) and it was very easy to apply. I ended up using three coats and there is still a slight hint of visible nail line, but nothing that bothers me. It dried down fairly quickly and to a more matte finish, so you definitely a top coat to bring out the shine and sparkle!

One thing I love about CbL polishes is that I generally know they are going to be easy to work with, making them a good choice when you want a fast mani or don't have a lot of time. This manicure took me maybe 30 minutes, which is great when I'm tired on a week night. Plus the color is great! Cheerful and happy, but not incredibly loud. This did look a little neon (and brighter) in lower lighting conditions, it was the perfect pick-me-up for all the grey rainy weather we were having back in March!

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Love Angeline Ammacarre

Today I have a cheerful little yellow polish called Ammacarre from Love Angeline to share with you! I actually bought this bottle months ago (it was on sale) but due to the pastel nature of the shade, I didn't wear it right away because it felt out of season. And while I don't consider myself to be a slave to trends, I due tend to theme my polishes to the season (darker colors in fall/winter, bright colors in spring/summer-- but there are always exceptions!) and it felt weird wearing this color out of season. But last week we were scheduled to have the nicest day of the year so far (and we did!) so I decided it was time to take the plunge and wear Ammacarre. In the bottle, Ammacarre has a pastel yellow appearance, but on the nail it's a bit more of a sunny yellow with yellow, pink, and blue shimmer in it. Without top coat, it dries to a matte satin finish.

The formula of Ammacarre is about what I expected. It's on the sheerer side, and while it does build up, you do need to be careful of dragging the polish and creating bald spots. Honestly, I was expecting the formula to be a lot worse given how light this yellow looks in the bottle but it applies fairly easily as long as you are careful. I've certainly had a lot worse experiences! That said, here's mine: I put on the first coat and was horrified. It was super sheer and looked very orange-yellow on my nails and looked terrible and for a minute I honestly considered whether I should plunge ahead and just scrap the manicure altogether. I decided to stay the course, and it worked out (whew). I did need four coats to get my nails to a level of opacity that I liked, and the polish does look a little thick on my nails. There is still some visible nail line, but with four coats it's not too bad. 

Here's what Ammacare looks like without a top coat:

While I was taking the pictures above I managed to dent my ring finger so I decided to slap on a top coat to help it dry down, because four coats meant I would probably have sheet marks on my nails the next morning. So here it what it looks like shiny:

I do have to say, I'm a bit disappointed with Ammacarre. I actually really love the way it looks without top coat, but I wish I hadn't needed four coats to get it looking the way I wanted it too. It looks much lighter in the bottle, and so I had a bit of a shock when it applied darker (aka not pastel) and also brighter than I anticipated. Due to the number of coats I needed and the extended dry time, I added a top coat, but I don't look the finished product quite as much.

I definitely don't hate this polish, it just wasn't quite what I was expecting! But the shimmer is quite lovely and I even got a compliment so I guess it was worth it in the end!

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Two-fer Tuesday: Sinful Colors Hazed and Truth or Lavendare

These two polishes have been kicking around for awhile (since last summer/early fall, I think) and it's time to get them on the blog before they fall off the cliff into ancient history. As it's been awhile since I wore them, my notes are nonexistent so I'm throwing in the same post rather than making two separate ones because honestly, I don't know how  much I have to say about them individually! Hazed and Truth or Lavendare are both from the Chalkboard Diaries collection, which featured a rainbow of polishes that dried to a demi-matte finish. I love mattes, so I scooped up all the ones I could find them! As the two purples of the collection, I was of course immediately intrigued by these and was not disappointed!

Hazed is a red toned magenta, I would say. These colors are hard to describe! Maybe a vibrant red-toned plum? I've seen a lot of other people calling it violet, though that's definitely not the word that springs to my mind. In any case, no matter how you describe, it's a pretty freaking beautiful polish. The formula was good and easy to apply (aka not too thick). I can't remember how many coats I applied, but it was 2-3 and I don't remember having any issues.

Truth or Lavendare is, you guessed it, a lavender purple! This had a good formula and went on pretty smoothly, though was probably just a touch thick (as you can imagine, I don't actually remember how many coats I used, but it was probably three). I apologize for the awful paint job-- yikes! My clean up has gotten a little better recently

Sorry it's taken ages to get these polishes on the blog-- I shouldn't have waited so long! I guess I could have made this a Throwback Thursday post, haha! In the end, I really like both of these polishes and they were definitely standouts in this collection (I technically still have two more to wear from this collection... I should really dig those out asap! Both Hazed and Truth or Lavendare were easy to apply and wear and I liked both of them a lot! I am also a big fan of the demi/satin matte finish, though it doesn't tend to last very long because I beat my hands up. I consider both of these to be winners! 

Monday, April 11, 2016

Zoya Zahara

I feel like last week featured a lot of darker polishes and since we finally seem to be getting some spring (in the PNW anyway) let's break out some brighter colors! Speaking of brands I haven't featured in awhile-- Zoya!! I haven't posted about a Zoya in for-ev-er! But when I saw the photos of the Spring Petals collection, I knew I wanted them all. The colors felt very springy and cheerful and appealed to me so I actually bought the whole set during the preorder, which is something I rarely do with Zoya these days. When the polishes arrived and I opened them up, Zahara was the first one I immediately wanted to wear.

Zahara is described as a "brilliant shimmering coral made modern with an opalescent effect." Which, yes, that's pretty much the polish in a nutshell. The formula was just ok. Zahara is a bit on the thick side, while also being a little bit sheer. It's not necessarily difficult to work with, but it's the type of formula that could lend itself to looking uneven on the nail if you're not careful. I didn't really have any issues while applying it, but did have to use three coats to get the coverage I wanted. Even still, there is a hint of visible nail line, but it didn't really bother me.

I think Zahara is lovely and perfect for spring. I think the shimmer really elevates this polish and makes it fun-- I love how summery it is. Coral is definitely on of my favorite nail colors for spring and summer. I wish the formula was a bit better, but it's not awful by any means and definitely workable. This is definitely one of my favorites from the collection!

Friday, April 8, 2016

Delush Bling in the Good Cheer

And just to round things out with my extremely random posting this week, here's a glitter! This is another new-to-me brand, but I loved this polish so much I needed to have it and here ya go! Delush Polish is known for their signature holo circle glitters and today's polish, Bling in the Good Cheer was their contribution to the January Pipe Down This Love Is Bliss polish box (which is a monthly indie box featuring Pipe Dream Polish, Love Angeline, Bliss Polish, and a monthly guest maker). The box was a bit more than I could afford to buy at the time, so I passed, but luckily there were a few extra bottles that were made available for individual sale, so I snagged one as soon as I saw the news! Bling in the Good Cheer is described as a "deep navy jelly with an explosion of glitter and signature holo dots." Spot (dot?) on! It's got a bunch of different color glitters of various shapes and size.

Bling in the Good Cheer had a good formula. As it has a jelly base, it does go on a little sheer in the first coat, but builds up nicely. I didn't have any trouble picking up glitter, though the holo dots, due to their size, are a bit harder to get out (but not impossible). I am pretty sure I used three coats here to get it opaque enough for my liking, though I probably could have just done two. I actually got to photograph this in a few different lighting conditions but the ones in the shade turned out to be the best at showcasing the glitter (not really a surprise). I apologize for the chip on my index finger-- I took these photos the morning after I applied with and I used a peel-off base coat (the only way I will wear glitter polishes) and of course I got a chip almost immediately.

Overall, I really like this polish. My photos don't really do it justice-- it's stupidly pretty in real life. I like that I didn't have any issues applying it and the holo dots really make it stand out from any other multicolor glitters in my collection (also, the navy base is a nice twist). This was my first introduction to Delush Polish and she has a bunch of polishes on her site that I am currently eyeing, so clearly I am happy!

Happy Friday all!

Thursday, April 7, 2016

A England Incense Burner

Oh man, I haven't posted an A England polish on the blog in, well, a really freaking long time. Which is not because there aren't awesome A England polishes coming out (there are), it's because I'm letting ones that I have languish and I haven't been keeping up with all the releases (what do you mean I can't have all the polish?!) so A England has been a brand that has fallen by the wayside. Which is a real shame, because I always love the collections Adina dreams up and they are always gorgeous and have such an interesting story behind them. When Llarowe decided to close up shop as a stockist and focus on her own polish line, I managed to snag a (newish) A England polish, Incense Burner, which was released as part of the Rossetti's Goddess collection. Incense Burner is described as "velvety, mysterious and hypnotic dark plum with the chromatic diversity of brown, green, mauve reflections of an antique bronze vessel."

As with most A England polishes, Incense Burner was super easy to work with. Nicely pigment, smooth easy formula-- pretty much applies itself, no issues! Because I work this a long time ago (thank again, laptop crash), I don't remember how many coats I wore, but it was probably two, given how nice the formula is.

I took some photos with my iPhone to try and capture the shift and shimmer (yes, this is the same polish!):

I really need to work on my photography skills (though my photography windows are severely limited due to mainly changing polish at night) because Incense Burner is a pretty complex polish and my photos do not do it justice at all, at least in terms of capturing the green shimmer that lurks there! I am super happy I snagged this polish, as with any A England, because they are always impeccable and unique and I'm very happy with Incense Burner!

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Polish 'M Center Stage

Because I showed you a metallic polish on Monday, I've got another one to share with you today-- this time from the brand Polish 'M! Centerstage was released a couple months ago and I loved the photos I saw so much that I decided I had to have it (ok, so that's really not that much of a challenge). Centerstage is described as a "crazy metallic flakie polish! It's in a clear base with rose, platinum, bronze and gold flakies." I think that sums it up very nicely!

I didn't have any issues with the formula of Centerstage. Because it is made of flakies, it's not 100% opaque right away-- I believe I used three coats here. It builds up very nicely and I didn't have any issues applying it!

Foils like Center Stage never fail impress me with how shiny and reflective they are-- it's mesmerizing! I was really happy with this and I freaking love how shiny it is and how it changes under different lighting conditions.

Here's an iPhone photo so you can see it in a slightly different light:

Are you drooling now? So.flipping.gorgeous! 

Centerstage is currently available for purchase if you are interested!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Star Wars: The Force Awakens manicure

Ok, so I should have posted this manicure a long time ago. I meant to post it when I actually went to see The Force Awakens, but never got around to it and then my laptop died, blah blah blah. But with the return of my laptop, I figured what better time than now, especially because it's been so long that manicure now coincides with the Blu-Ray release of the movie! So... happy release day?! Hahaha. I actually haven't bought a copy yet (gasp!) but am hoping maybe they will have it on sale at Costco when we do our grocery shopping this upcoming weekend. Just kidding, of course I preordered it.

Given that I have been on a mission to collect a bunch of Star Wars themed nail polishes, I knew of course that I would have to use some of these for my movie manicure. Because it was a brand spanking new Star Wars movie, I decided to use polishes themed to the new movie. So I used CoverGirl Nemesis as my base. Nemesis is a vampy plum with red tones; a deep burgundy is more accurate. The formula on this was just ok-- it was a little patchy and uneven. I used two coats here because I knew I would be adding a glitter topper.

One of the Star Wars themed polishes that I collected recently is from Level Up Lacquer, a new-to-me brand. Level Up Lacquer actually started in 2012 as Daring Digits, but rebranded after a move to Alaska in 2014. So when I saw some swatches of her Star Wars collection, I figured I might as well jump in and get them all! For my manicure, I decided to use BB-8, based on the newest (and possibly cutest new droid), which described as a "glitter bomb with white squares silver and orange hexes, and tiny white specs." This glitter topper is perfect for BB-8! I used one coat here over Nemesis.

I was happy with how this manicure turned out. No, it doesn't scream Star Wars to a casual person, but *I* knew the polishes were Star Wars related, and that's really what counts anyway. I really love the color combo too. Yay Star Wars!

Monday, April 4, 2016

Julep Jenica

I know we're heading into spring (at least we were last week) but at the same time I was craving some dark. But not too dark! I do tend to follow general trends for the seasons-- and usually I like brights and pastels as we move into spring. But even with the change of seasons, I found myself craving something dark. So I picked up Julep Jenica, which was in a Maven box at some point, though it has been so long now that I can't remember which one it was. Jenica is described as a "wrought iron metallic" and I think that sums it up pretty nicely.

The formula of Jenica was good. Just a touch on the thick side, but generally I didn't have any trouble applying it. As a metallic, you do have to be a bit careful of brushstrokes, but I certainly did have a problem with them while I was applying it. I think I only needed two coats to get the coverage I wanted. Jenica also dried fairly quickly, which is pretty common with a metallic finish.

I really like Jenica-- it reminds me of very shiny graphite. I haven't featured many Julep polishes lately, but I generally find them to be decent, especially since they changed to their oxygen formula. No complaints from me; this polish was easy to work with and I really liked the color; it was exactly what I wanted!