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Monday, October 29, 2012


What an ordeal!!! I have my nails painted all Halloween-y and am super excited about it. Today has been a bit of a post dump this is my third, but I did these nails last night and just in time for Halloween.

I used so many polishes for this mani. Since I am no good at nail art on my own fingers I went for a mix of finishes and textures. Nail polishes in order from left to right:
Mini OPI Alpine Snow
Essence Grey-t To Be Here
Essie Matte About You (for a matte topcoat over a matte polish)
Piggy Polish Nocture-Nail
Illamasqua Nurture
Cult Nails Deal With It
Urban Outfitters Tiny Shorts
The New Black shimmery orange
China Glaze I Herd That
OPI Ya'll Come Back Ya Hear?
OPI The Living Daylights
Butter London Gobsmacked
OPI Black Shatter
China Glaze Liquid Leather
LA Colors Art Deco black striper
ManGlaze Matte Is Murder

So I know that there are more polishes here than I have fingers, but the effect I was going for required it. Every nail is different, and they mostly came out the way I wanted.

On my right hand from my pinkie to my thumb:
  • I used TNB orange shimmer with CG I Herd That. This is the first time I've used the CG orange glitter. I think its a nice fall orange glitter.
  • I used CG Liquid Leather and a nail sticker. I LOVE LIQUID LEATHER. It is by far my favorite black. Its really like a black jelly, which is why I think it goes on so well
  • I used Illamasqua Nurture, I literally just posted a swatch of this but I really used it like a week ago... you know how I feel. I used my Seche Vite over the top so it was shiny
  • I used ManGlaze Matte Is Murder. I think ManGlaze has the best matte polished I've ever used. I love the application, they don't dry too quick when applying and they look great even with a shiny top coat. I used Essie's Matte About You as a topcoat over this. I really value the use of top coats
  • I used Tiny Shorts on the thumb. I swatched it a while back and I like the color a lot.

Left Hand thumb to pinkie:
  • I used Butter London's Gobsmacked. This has to be one of my favorite polishes. If I were stranded with one polish for the rest of my life, this would probably be it. Its super sparkly but deep and dark.
  • I used Cult Nails Deal With it and OPI's Black Shatter. I did these nails a while back but didn't post about it ( I literally so my nails everyday, I don't have time to post about it.)
  • This is OPI's Ya'll Come Back Ya Hear? from their Texas collection. This is a very thin orange jelly despite looking very opaque in the bottle. I made a jelly sandwich with OPI The Living Daylights which I also posted about today. Its a nice combination, I may do it for a big Denver Bronco game because the blue glitters stand out over the orange (and I'm in Denver.)
  • I used Essence Grey-t To Be Here. This is my first Essence polish, I'm a bit of a snob when it comes to my polish. I dont like to buy a lot of cheap stuff, but the color is phenomenal! It's a light grey with pink micro flaky things in it. Its gorgeous! At .99 cents GO BUY IT! I used the LA Colors black striper to make it look like a tombstone EDIT: I also used Julep's Meryl cling wrapped over the top to make it look like stone.
  • I used the mini bottle of OPI's Alpine Snow to make the base of a ghost and then used the LA striper to make the outline and actually used a dotting tool with CG's Liquid Leather to make the eyes and mouth.
They all look a bit dull because I used the Piggy Polish glow in the dark Nocture-nail over the top of everything. To get a good glow you have to use like 4 coats of it. So it distorted a lot of the colors. VERY sad on the CG Liquid Leather with skull and crossbones nail... it was so richly black before I put the glow on... le sigh. This is also why I was obsessed with top coats on this mani: Piggy Polish uses formaldehyde in their polish and I put my fingers in my mouth a lot. 

It looks pretty cool and I am going to try to keep my nails like this until Wednesday... TRY is the operative word there. We'll see.

I want to see your Halloween nails! Email me at and I will post the pictures I get before Halloween!

})i({ - Amy

>(/ / /)<  (candy)
[¬º-°]¬  (zombie) 

Illamasqua Nurture (Rubber Finish)

I LOVE green! It is my favorite color. That being said I own probably 5 green polishes and maybe a couple green stripers. So when I heard about Illamasqua's rubber finish I was intrigued enough to buy one, and their green was perfect! But I can't get a good picture of it, you can find it HERE.
The polish goes on gloopy and dries quickly. It makes it kind of a difficult polish to apply. But the color is great and the finish is different. Its not really matte, more satin, but less shiney. This is three coats... I hate how I cant really capture it. Its a good color, with a workable formula. As you can see it does even out, but looks horrible on my right hand, very uneven and bumpy. I like Illamasqua's regular polish, the rubber was kind of fun though.

I have had this polish for a while now, but never used it. I cut my nails super short and have had difficulty growing them out again, but I like bright fun colors on short nails so I thought I'd give it a go.

On that note, any suggestions out there on how to grow my nails out? I have been using cuticle oil and not cutting my cuticles (as you can totally see in every FREAKING photo - my nails have been a mess since before the blog started), because I heard somewhere that the key to healthy nails are healthy cuticles. I also switched base coats recently to Orly's Nail Defense for strengthening and repairing (super recently: only for the last two manis... not even posted yet!) I just don't know what to do! I used to have the strongest nails and they were always very long. I think it might have something to do with eggs. I used to eat way more eggs than I do now... but I still drink the same amount of milk, I dont know if these things affect anything. When I studied nutrition I learned that more vitamin A and protein are good for growing out nails, which seems to work but they keep flaking and breaking... LE SIGH! 
In need of some help here! Would love to get some comments about nail health...

})i({  -Amy

Zoya Toni and OPI The Living Daylights, feat. The New Black Navy

This is my quintessential fall mani! Before a couple weeks ago I didn't have very many fall colors. I mentioned a couple posts back about buying some new Zoya and this is one of them. The color is a rich deep burgundy and as usual for Zoya, the application was really smooth. This is a great color for fall and would be good in an understated Christmas mani, (which I'm totally going to do!)
For this mani I used my new Zoya Toni and The New Black navy color. (As a side, TNB doesnt name their colors, so I dont know why groupon had names for the ones in the runway series. From now on I will just describe their colors instead of naming them!) I also bought a new glitter! I dont use much glitter, I hate removing it and I dont really want to soak my fingers in acetone to get it off easily... that being said, I did pick up a glitter when I went to check out the new OPI Skyfall collection. To be perfectly honest I went to check out The Man With The Golden Gun specifically, and after clutching the last one to my bosom and wandering around Ulta for an hour I decided to put it back... It wasn't worth it in my opinion. But I did pick up The Living Daylights and Live And Let Die (along with some other stuff, lets face it I have a bit of a nail polish problem.)
I like the way this mani came out. The Living Daylights is a really good fall glitter. It has copper, gold, silver and teal hexagonal glitters, so they go with most fall colors. It goes on really concentrated too, shown is one coat!
Please excuse the messy cuticles!

I couldnt decide what the best camera shot was, but I have the better camera back, so there's a plus.

These colors are great for fall! Do you have any favorite glitters you use in the fall? Or do you have any favorite fall colors? By the way, what is a good fall orange color? That is what I'm really after!
Let me know what you thought!

})i({  -Amy

Monday, October 22, 2012

The New Black Runway Color Barometer, Midnight Blue and Horchata Cream


I had seen this brand at Nordstroms a few times and totally ignored it because it seemed a little pretentious to call your brand the "new black". Then I was on Groupon and saw a special for the Barometer set of The New Black polish for $16 and I had a $15 dollar credit, so I bought it and paid a dollar and then shipping. I am SO glad that I did because this has to be the best formula I have ever used!!! 

This is Midnight Blue and Horchata Cream (and a tiny spot of Electric Banana.) I was going to do the spots and flowers on all the fingers with inverted colors but the blue was so rich, smooth and glossy that I couldnt bring myself to mess with it. I liked how this mani came out.

I even coordinated my outfit to go with it! Navy cords and cream toned top with navy stripes!

The problems with this polish:
First, I was so enamored that I went to Nordstorms to buy a ton of it! They had changed the whole layout of the beauty section of the store and when I asked for "The New Black" no one knew what I was talking about, they tried to sell me Butter London and Mac and Essie's black polish... URGHHH!!!! Not black colored polish, the BRAND NAME. They looked at me like I was an idiot, and I felt like one! So I gave up, it was infuriating.
Second, the bottles are super tiny. SUPER TINY like .125 fl oz each. On the upside they are like $4.50 a piece (but as far as I can tell, you can only buy them in sets.)
BUT if you come across this brand: BUY IT!!! Just do it, you'll love the smooth application and the rich color tones.

Have you tried this brand before? What did you think, yay or nay? Any similar polishes you've come across (no seriously, you must tell me if there are more polishes out there like this!)

})i({ -Amy

Sunday, October 21, 2012

E.L.F. Polish Trio: Teal Blue, Yellow, Party Peach

So in the one I just posted about Zoya Charisma I mentioned that I bought some polish because I was blue.... Well, I bought a LOT of polish, 3 Zoyas, 1 China Glaze, these ELF polishes and a duo-chrome OPI

These ELF ones came in a pack from TJMaxx for 3 bucks! Thats a buck a bottle! The bottles are .203 fl oz each so they are kinda small, but no worries!

 I tried my hand at the gradient look first. I applied the yellow then sponged on the orange, then the green/teal. It looked terrible, bestie said it looked like a Mexican flag. So I put a black shatter polish over the top...
I should have waited a little cus the shatter pulled the color and left bare spots on my nails.

I didnt like this mani very much (or at all), but I figured I had ought to show the good with the bad. Seemed like a good polish but I dont really know, the sponge seemed to pick it up pretty well I guess. 
Meh, this post was more to show you that I buy bargains... regardless of how much I like them... and how it back fires.

})i({  -Amy

Zoya Charisma

I Love Zoya's formula. It goes on really smooth and looks really nice, so when I was feeling a little blue the other day I went out and bought 3 Zoya polishes: Charisma, Tony (dark burgundy red), and Evvie (dark greenish tinted gray). I thought the last two would complement each other so you may see them in a post coming up...

This is Charisma, it is a fun magenta color. This was two coats, a little VNL but that wouldve gone away with a third. On the ring finger I used Butter London's Slapper and a dotting tool with Charisma.

This was a fun colored mani and picked my spirits right up! Charisma dried a little dull, kinda matte but the top coat solved that issue! Overall I like it... so yeah, super short post for you 

My internet was down for a few days, other wise I would have posted this sooner. Instead you get to have 2 posts today!!! Yippee!

Whats your favorite Zoya color? Do you even like Zoya? (why, why not?) Let me know!

})i({  -Amy

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

So... I should've done this at the beginning of the month, but better late than never right?
Please excuse the lack of clean up!!! I usually fix the spill in the shower the morning after I do the mani (I do them at night because I don't move much when I sleep and SV dries pretty quick.) Anyways, I take an orange stick or manicure stick and rub the excess off in the shower after I've soaked for a bit!

I thought this would be a really good color scheme for a breast cancer mani. I think it came out pretty nice (even on my right hand!)
I used the mini OPI Bubble Bath for the base on all the nails save the ring fingers. Then using Color Club's Jackie-Oh! (which I am OBSESSED with) I painted the whole of the ring fingers and then the tips of the rest of the fingers (using the hole reinforcements for guides.) I painted thick tips so that I could use the Art Deco white striper to paint white tips on the pink ones, then used the striper to draw the ribbon design. After that I used the Art Deco blue small glitter striper to stripe between the pink and white tips and to outline the breast cancer ribbon. Over the top I used Essie's Kisses and Bises to add shimmer over every nail. (BTW I totally picked the Kisses and Bisses up at Marshall's for 3 bucks!!!) I top coated with SV and voilà!

I picked up a decent camera... from the boyfriend's junk pile aka: his house. He always has the newest and best electronics so when he replaced his small point and shoot cannon with 12.1 megapixels and 14x optical zoom, with a DSLR, I took the Cannon. I used it to take pictures of the revisited Two Fingered Salute mani but then it died and he doesn't know where the battery charger is... probably somewhere in the junk pile. I both praise him and damn him simultaneously... BOYFRIEND!!! (*shakes fist at the heavens*.) So I'm back with the cell phone camera for now... le sigh. It's decent enough, but I want the cannon to swatch some of the new polish I got in and am getting in... Stay tuned!!!

What did you do for breast cancer awareness? I've realized that you may not be able to upload photos to the comment box but I would be happy to post anything I get in an e-mail!

Let me know what you think!

})i({  - Amy

Butter London Two Fingered Salute REVISITED

So this is a super short one I was supposed to post a week or two ago... I have had a hectic time lately, midterms, new employee, and a southern vacation.
I swatched Two Fingered Salute two posts ago and was unimpressed. My boyfriend's  solution? Apply a copper colored tip to enhance the subtle copper tones in the polish. Well after much debate I went with the cheapest option because it was an Amazon Prime item and I'd get it in two days... Revlon's Copper Penny is o.k. It looks very rosey in the bottle and looks kinda rosey on the nails but in some light it looks pretty gold. It applies very well, goes on smooth, coats evenly, and doesn't streak much (but keep in mind all I've used it for have been tips.)

I think if I found a shade of copper that I liked better then this mani would work. It highlighted the copper in Salute pretty well. Good idea boyfriend!

Let me know if you liked this idea, what else you would have done to Salute to make it pop and what other kinds of copper polish you like better!

})i({  -Amy

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Urban Outfitters Polish Tiny Shorts

I went to urban outfitters on Saturday because of The PolishAholic's post on Friday about Ruby Wing's Color Changing Polish. While I was there I bought Ruby Wing's Eclipse (when I really wanted Moonstone.) But I also bought two Urban Outfitters colors (they were having a special, buy two for $8 instead of $10), I got Tiny Shorts and Bandeau (the second one is a BRIGHT intense purple.)

Tiny Shorts is fluro orange. SUPER bright! I know it's a little late in the year for neons but I LOVE THEM!!!! I could wear them all year... le sigh.
The polish went on thick and blotchy but I wanted to keep it thin (so it would dry someday!) and my thin blotchy coats evened out after 3. Then it dried really weird, almost matte but more... dull.

So Iused my Seche Vite top coat (anyone know how to pronounce that?) It fixed the dullness and smoothed everything out. I figured I could still get away with this for Halloween or something, but otherwise a very summer color. In the pictures its such a bright red orange, in life its more of a true neon... and a little more yellow. It's FAB either way.

I hoped if I took a picture outside it would show the color better... kinda but nowhere close to its true glory; the thumb is close, I will be going back to this a lot (probably all year to brighten up my winter!)

There is total VNL but that doesnt really bother me at all... just figured for summa you guys out there it would be a bust...

ah well

What do you think? Whats your favorite neons? Any better oranges? What would you do with this color in a full mani? Let me know!

})i({  - Amy

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Butter London Two Fingered Salute

So today I painted my nails at work... It needed to be done! I bought Butter London's Two Fingered Salute a little bit ago, but hadn't tried it out yet. I ADORE the way it looks in the bottle, it jumped out and screamed at me from Nordstrom's display.
Its SO purdy! I thought it looked like tarnished copper. It's basically a grayish mint green base with flecks of what looks like copper shimmer in it (but is actually copper micro glitter... only learned that after I tried to get it off). You can kinda see it in the picture.
(Flash on)
After putting it on my fingers I wasn't so sure about it. Its not a green I would normally wear and the coppery shimmer is hard to see on the nails.  

(Flash off)
I was a little upset after shoving my hand into my boyfriend's face so he could see how pretty this polish is (will I have to do that to everyone?)

I want to be able to notice the beauty of this polish, and my boyfriend suggested that the copper would "pop" if I used a copper for tips (how helpful, boyfriend!) So I looked online for some copper polish and came across some that I thought would work. Essie's Penny Talk looked pink enough but after reading a few blogs, some people had said it was a little more on the brown side and I am looking for a pinker copper. I found Revlon's Copper Penny on Amazon Prime for $2.99 so I bought it anyways... but then I'm still looking at Butter London's Old Bill (maybe since they made the Salute their coppers would be the same... but I'm not sure), also Elf Polish 1576 Copper but I can't find any swatches of it... we'll see how the Revlon looks and go from there.
When I get the copper I'll paint my nails again and see if it looks any better!

})i({  -Amy

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Photo Catch Up

Hello All!
These are photos of stuff I have done up to now... Not a riveting post, but one I need to do to move this process along, after this post it's all new stuff, techniques,  brands and quality.... or at least my description of those things. 
If you have done anything similar and want to share or help (mostly help!!!) then please leave a comment. I would love to include your information in my posts!

So I did eventually do an anchor... but it was so much work that I gave it up soon after. One of my earlier ones, so I don't even remember the crap polish I used.. no biggie, but I did abandon the scotch tape here for a striper.

I LOVE the color of this one... I desperately wish I could do this on all of my fingers because the nudes are just so elagant. This is OPI You Don't Know Jacques and Tickle my France-y with my lame excuse for cheetah spots! I bought these colors is a 10 pack of mini Opi polishes at Ulta. The set was called Best of the best and I literally paid like 6 bucks for the set, I think it was a pretty good find.

Another set of the Co-worker's nails. I liked this one a bunch. The colors are all of those Art Deco ones... it was hard to paint the whole nail with an art brush. And the bows are little nail stickers. I think this would be cute for a baby shower!

This is really what I wanted to do with the baby nails, but I couldn't find black bow stickers. I tried to paint them and then bought the Konad stamping set with bows but lost steam after a bit. Havent really done bows since. This is China Glaze For Audrey and those Art Decos.

These are my co-worker's nails again, (she lucked out with all the free manis!) I think these are super fun and I would definitely do them again. They are Art Deco colors over OPI Alpine Snow (part of that box set I talked about.)

I took this idea from one of my Instagram followers (iloveyou432)... Its a cute simple idea for a mani, easy to produce on both hands and subtle. 

Pink so hot it'll burn your retinas! I love this color! This is Color Club's Jackie-Oh! A friend of mine got it in her Birch Box and she hates pink. She gave this to me when I mentioned that I wanted to get a neon pink after giving one of mine to a co-worker.

Another copy from Instagram (leacoast) and I LOVE it. the flowers are super easy, you do uneven spots (so not with a dotting tool) and then with a lighter shade of the color you do a swirl inside. They were beautiful and I wished I couldve done them for myself (instead of for my co-worker, lucky B.) China Glaze Four Audrey and Art Deco

Another idea from Instagram, can't really give credit since this girl was reposting reposts... and I HATED IT!!!! The little palm trees are cute enough and since I only had to do my middle and ring of my left had I thought it was cute (the rest of the nails were skittled with colors from the palm tree stripes.) What I really hated was the nail polish I bought, (it was around this time that I learned to stop buying cheap nail polish... GRRR), the yellow stained SO BAD! It is only starting to grow out and you can see it on some of my later manis... :( Never buy Sally Hansen's Complete Salon Manicure in Buttercup.

Had to do something dark after the staining and I love how it turned out! This is China Glaze Recycle with CND Silver Chrome tips. (I use the hole reinforcements to do the tips, super easy.)

I did these for my Bestie's birthday. Silver Chrome base with roses and thorns... got this idea online, so I guess I stole it. In future posts I will credit all ideas, but hopefully have more of my own.

Thought this would be a really cute way to use more of the Silver Chrome (I became obsessed shortly after buying it.) This is Jackie-Oh and Silver Chrome with zebra striping on my co-worker.

I bought my first 4 Butter London colors at Ulta, I waited until they had a buy one get one free sale that I had heard rumors of. This is Gobsmacked and I LOVE it. It is like a pure glitter coat with medium sized gunmetal black sparkles. It is so awesome!

I totally stole this idea from another blogger right down to the brand of polishes and most of the colors (except they used Lesbihonest instead of Ilf.) At this point I can't remember who. My apologies if I took this idea from you but, as they say: "Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery." I used ManGlaze's Matte is Murder, Fuggen Ugly, and Ilf for this, on top of Butter London's Diamond Geezer. I wish I was able to make the stripes smaller; I swapped from scotch tape to electrical tape, but haven't found the right scissors for the job. I really like ManGlaze's matte polishes, they go on smooth and don't dry too quickly during application (but do dry quickly overall.)

I assured myself that I would not pay for Deborah Lippmann's Glitter in the Air when Revlon made an exact dupe called Whimsical that I could buy from Ulta for  5 bucks... but I waited too long and by the time I got around to getting this Ulta didnt have it anymore and it was selling on Amazon for 15 bucks... might as well buy Lippmann's at that price, right? If you look close enough you can still see the staining from the palm tree mani... le sigh

This is my current favorite. If I only had one color, it would probably be this... This is Zoya's Yasmeen and I dont really like purple. This purple is rich, smooth, radiant and opaque as all hell, it also has a fine golden sheen to it. I put a little rhinestone on as an experiment.

My Bestie wanted to borrow my  OPI DS sapphire... which I haven't swatched yet, and when I went over we ended up doing something a little different. This was exactly last week, practically the same time as now. It's Butter London's Trout Pout and Slapper with another little rhinestone.

This is my first crackle or shatter or whatever its called. Its OPI Gold Shatter over Butter London's Slapper, it reminds me of natural turquoise, maybe if I had put a little black in there it would've been more like the stone.

This was an excuse to go buy black polish (I had lost mine.) This is ManGlaze Matte is Murder with China Glaze Liquid Leather. I adore this look, very simple and classic. I paired it with a white pencil skirt and a black v-neck sweater with little floral black and white flats... ADORBS!

I got my dotting tools in the mail yesterday and had to do this mani Monday morning. Its Julep's Alicia and the darker pink spots were going to be Butter London's Trout Pout, they are very similar but the Pout is a bit darker. Not dark enough though, so I frankened Jackie-oh and Trout Pout... I guess if I had to name it, it would be Jackie's Pout. I dont know what the green one is, it came in my mystery box and it didnt have a name on it... if i do this mani again (and as I type away and see how cute my fingers are, I think I will) then I will probably do a dark blue instead of the green. Maybe an excuse to buy a blue from Zoya.

Any Zoya fans out there? I have it narrowed down to Charla, Ibiza, and Song. All pretty different, but very pretty. I don't have a darker blue yet and could use one! If you have an opinion or a swatch you want to share, I will post it when I decide on a blue. Let me know!

})i({   -Amy