Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Twinsie Tuesday: Manicure Inspired By Your Hometown

It's that time again... Twinsie Tuesday! This week, we're doing manicures inspired by our hometowns. I grew up in a suburb of Detroit, so I originally wanted to do a Detroit Red Wings manicure for this theme, seeing as Hockeytown is one of Detroit's many nicknames and hockey is my favorite sport. But since the Wings got eliminated from the playoffs this past weekend, a Red Wings mani would be a bit depressing for me. :-/

So instead I did a manicure incorporating one of the other famous symbols of Detroit: the Old English D. It's been the logo of the Detroit Tigers baseball team since their formation all the way back in 1901 and has come to be a symbol not only of the team, but also of the city itself.

Orange: OPI A Roll In The Hague
Navy: Deborah Lippmann Rolling In The Deep
White: Sally Hansen nail striper

I did this mani in navy, orange and white--the Tigers' colors. Attempting the Old English D was pretty intimidating for me but I think it turned out halfway alright. I did some little paw prints on my left thumb, because I thought it'd be too difficult to try and replicate the D with my off hand.

So there you have it: my Detroit mani! I hope you liked it and that you'll check out my Twinsies' hometown manis too!

Alaina at The Little Canvas
Amanda at Amandalandish
Chelsea at Nailed Blog
Elizabeth at Did My Nails
Kelly at Tuxarina
Lakeisha at Refined and Polished
Marisa at Polish Obsession
Rachel at Top Coat It
Róisín at Cuti-CLUE-les
Stephanie at A Little Polish
Traci at DrinkCitra

Monday, April 28, 2014

Deborah Lippmann Walking On Sunshine

When you're as pale and as blonde as I am, yellow is not always your friend. I tend to gravitate more towards pastel yellows, but Deborah Lippmann Walking On Sunshine looked so summery-y and happy that I couldn't resist trying this bright yellow creme. I don't really have anything else in my stash like it!

The formula is the nicest I've ever experienced with a yellow polish. My other Deborah Lippmann yellow, Yellow Brick Road, is a complete pain in the ass to apply but I'm happy to report that Walking On Sunshine is the total opposite. It has a little drag to it, but otherwise is surprisingly creamy. I used three coats here.

The color is definitely different and I can appreciate that. I wouldn't necessarily say it's all that flattering on me, but screw it--it's bright and fun and I like it! :P

Sunday, April 27, 2014

OPI Ford Mustang Preview

Back in 2005, OPI teamed up with Ford Mustang for a three-color collection. Now, almost 10 years later, they're back with another, larger collection to celebrate the Mustang's 50th anniversary!
OPI Ford Mustang Collection

L to R: Race Red, 50 Years of Style, Queen of the Road, The Sky's My Limit, Girls Love Ponies, Angel with a Leadfoot

I gotta say, I love the names for this collection! They fit the theme perfectly and while I know some people love the "punny" names, I thought these were a fun, refreshing change. As for the actual polishes, I'm especially looking forward to The Sky's My Limit and Angel with a Leadfoot! Race Red is tempting too.

The Ford Mustang Collection launches in July. Will any of these be making your wishlist?

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Essie First Timer

Essie First Timer is a spring green creme from last year's resort collection. I have a special fondness for Essie greens, so whenever they come out with a new one, I pretty much have to have it. First Timer was a birthday present last year and I felt like busting it out again now that we're getting some warmer weather here. It's the perfect shade of grass green for springtime!

The formula is a little frustrating in that it doesn't self-level...at all. I tried thin coats, thick coats, waiting extra time between layers, you name it. (For the record, the swatch you see above is three coats.) None of it seemed to make much difference, but thankfully a good topcoat helps even things out some.

Finicky formula aside, the color really is lovely. It's vibrant without losing that creaminess--if that makes sense. This is a color that will put visions of swimming pools and fruity drinks in your head!

Friday, April 25, 2014

Super Black 3rd Degree

Super Black 3rd Degree is an orange-based metallic red with veins of gold micoshimmer running through it. This polish absolutely gleams and definitely has that "lit from within" look to it. It's a very sexy and summer-y red!

A slightly blurry picture to show off the shimmer:

This was my first experience with Super Black polish (a big shoutout to Amanda, the ultimate enabler, for introducing me to yet another awesome brand) and I was very impressed, both with the color itself and the fantastic formula! 3rd Degree has a perfect consistency that glides effortlessly across the nail and it was almost a one-coater to boot! I wound up using two to prevent any VNL from peeking through.

I love 3rd Degree and now I'm itching to try more from Super Black, especially their holos and glitters! You can purchase Super Black from their website.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Born Pretty Cat Nail Wraps: Review & Swatches

I've got a super cute set of cat-themed nail wraps from Born Pretty Store to share today! I couldn't resist the idea of having some little kitties on my nails and the designs are just too freakin' adorable. I mean, it has kitties playing with balloons. That right there had me sold!

Here are all the designs you get with this set. It comes with two of these strips, so you get 14 wraps in all. There's a good variety of sizes to pick from and I like that each wrap has its own design rather than a repeated pattern or image.

And then here's how they look on the nails!

These wraps are very thin and flexible, so application is super easy. I didn't have any issues with creasing, which is sometimes an issue for me when I use thicker, more sticker-like wraps. You do have to be careful not to pull these too thin when applying though, like I did, because then you can wind up with a bit of early tipwear. But I'm blaming this on user error rather than the wraps themselves. I get a little hasty with application sometimes!

Aside from some tipwear, these held up pretty well and didn't peel around the edges. I actually think you could put topcoat over these if you really wanted to increase the wear and durability. I put a little topcoat over some Sally Hansen wraps once--which are similar in quality and feel to these Born Pretty ones--and that made them virtually bulletproof!

So overall, I really liked these! The design is adorable, they're easy to apply and they're nice quality for the price--just $2.38 for the whole set!

If you would like to purchase anything from Born Pretty, they offer 10% off for Nailed readers:

Disclosure: This product was sent to me for my honest review. For more information, please see my disclosure policy.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

OPI Blush Hour

OPI Blush Hour is a sheer pink base with pink and purple glitters. I must admit, this polish was kind of a bust for me. First, I tried wearing it alone...

It took four coats to build to opacity and the end result looked kind of muddled. I also experienced some pretty bad bubbling. So I decided to see if I preferred Blush Hour layered. Here it is over Essie Ballet Slippers...

...but I wasn't completely in love with the layered look either. Plus I feel like the tinted base kind of stifles the layering possibilities. I feel like OPI should have either made the base more opaque so it would look better worn alone or just left the base clear so you could layer this polish over a wider variety of base shades.

So overall, this shade didn't live up to my expectations. I tried, but I just wasn't feeling it. :-/ What was the last polish you were disappointed by?

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Twinsie Tuesday: Matte & Gloss Combo

I haven't been feeling so hot for the past day or so, so I apologize for the late and pretty brief TT post today. Hopefully I'll be back in proper swatching action again soon! But I whipped up something quick for today's theme, a matte and gloss combo.

I started with Essie First Timer, a spring green creme, as my base, to bring in the gloss half of the combination. Then I layered Lumina Lacquer Desfile de Mickey--a rainbow explosion of matte glitters, plus a dash of holographic goodness and the piece de resistance: silver holographic Mickey Mouse-shaped glitters(!)--over top. When I first wore this polish, I got plenty of Mickey glitters, but although I fished and fished this time, I could not seem to pull up any of them!

I hope you'll forgive the pretty slipshod nature of today's post. Be sure to check out my Twinsies' blogs today as well!

Alaina at The Little Canvas
Amanda at Amandalandish
Chelsea at Nailed Blog
Elizabeth at Did My Nails
Kelly at Tuxarina
Lakeisha at Refined and Polished
Marisa at Polish Obsession
Rachel at Top Coat It
Róisín at Cuti-CLUE-les
Stephanie at A Little Polish
Traci at DrinkCitra

Monday, April 21, 2014

Barielle Slate Of Affairs

I was going through my swatch folder the other day and found a couple of polishes I'd worn that I never posted the pictures of, so I'll be doing a bit of housekeeping on the blog today. One of the ones that got away was Barielle Slate Of Affairs, a blue-tinged steel grey with a flash of pearly blue shimmer. If you're a fan of greys, then you'll love the twist Slate Of Affairs puts on a classic neutral shade.

 Damn I miss those nails! *sobs quietly in corner* Ahem. Anyways, the shimmer is on the subtle side, so it's more the type where you see it gleam here and there when the light hits it just right. But it's not so elusive that it's practically invisible (what I like to call "Essie disappearing shimmer syndrome"). The formula is solid and I used three coats here.

You can purchase Barielle from their website.

Disclosure: This polish was sent to me for my honest review. For more information, please see my disclosure policy.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Sally Hansen Bubblegum Pink

As you can guess from the name, Sally Hansen Bubblegum Pink is a vibrant (so much so it even freaked my camera out a bit) shade of bubblegum pink. But what you might not expect--and what really makes this polish for me--is that it also has a very delicate silver shimmer to it. I love the contrast between the bright base color and the softness of the shimmer.

The formula is nice and smooth, reaching opacity in three coats. This is such a perfect pink for springtime and it could easily transition into summer as well as a fun beach pedi. Plus it's not too blue or too red-based, so it should flatter any skin tone. A big thank you to Amanda for sending this pretty pink my way. :)

The Sally Hansen Xtremewear line is one of my favorites. You can't beat the price (around two bucks, depending on where you shop), the quality is solid and there's a nice variety of colors and finishes to choose from. As far as polish goes, it's pretty much the ultimate cheap thrill! These little guys have a nasty habit of making their way into my cart when I'm impulse shopping at the grocery store...

Thursday, April 17, 2014

SuperChic Lacquer Morphamas

SuperChic Lacquer Morphamas is a bright teal jelly filled with blue and chartreuse glitter pieces (primarily hexes). It's blue, green and glittery. For me, this is pretty much the recipe of a successful polish, so you know I love this one! I got Morphamas from the always generous Amanda, who always introduces me to awesome new brands!

The formula is excellent, albeit a touch sheer--this is a jelly, after all. But I managed to bring it to near-opacity at three coats. Morphamas was actually a holiday polish, but what it really makes me think of, with its mix of blue and green, is the ocean. So it makes a fantastic summer polish as well!

You can purchase SuperChic Lacquer on Etsy.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Butter London Sweet Somethings Preview

Essie isn't the only polish company with a new wedding collection coming out this spring! Now, everyone's favorite anglophiles, Butter London, are trying their immaculately manicured hand at the wedding polish game. Their inaugural wedding collection, Sweet Somethings, features four polishes, with each representing one of the traditional "somethings" a bride needs for her big day: old, new, borrowed and blue.

L to R: Doily, Alabaster Gaze, Petticoat

Pink Ribbon is a re-promote (you can see my swatches of it HERE) but the other three are brand new polishes. Currently they can only be purchased as a minis set. It would make a great gift if you or someone you know is getting married, but I must admit I wish there was the option to purchase the colors on their own too. But maybe we will see some of the individual colors join Butter's core line-up in the future! 

The Sweet Somethings set is already available on BL's website. Will you be trying Butter's first-ever wedding collection?

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Twinsie Tuesday: Sephora by OPI 212-Sephora

For this installment of Twinsie Tuesday, we're featuring a polish that was given to us as a gift! I love receiving polish as a gift but I know I'm probably not the easiest person to buy it for, given the ridiculous size of my collection. So most of my gifted polishes have come from fellow bloggers, who share and understand the same obsession! The polish I chose for today's post, Sephora by OPI 212-Sephora, was a birthday gift from the lovely Nory!

If you ask me, 212-Sephora was the crown jewel of the now-defunct SOPI line. It's a very deep brown jelly with chunky silver holo glitter and iridescent green and orange flakies. This is a super unique polish. I can't think of anything else out there like it!

And then a really quick shot I snapped in natural light so you can see all the flakies better:

I'm not normally big on brown polish, but this one really won me over. You know me: I can't resist anything sparkly! I do wish my nails were still super long so I could show off this beauty properly, but I had a bit of a mishap at work this weekend that wrecked my right thumb nail, so unfortunately I had to trim down the rest to match. :(

But getting back to the polish itself, the formula is nice and can be built up to full opacity, no problem. I used three coats here. 212-Sephora is the only SOPI I own, but if there's one polish worth tracking down from the line, this one gets my vote!

Alaina at The Little Canvas
Amanda at Amandalandish
Chelsea at Nailed Blog
Elizabeth at Did My Nails
Kelly at Tuxarina
Lakeisha at Refined and Polished
Marisa at Polish Obsession
Rachel at Top Coat It
Róisín at Cuti-CLUE-les
Stephanie at A Little Polish
Traci at DrinkCitra

Monday, April 14, 2014

Deborah Lippmann Rockin' Robin

 Deborah Lippmann Rockin' Robin is sure to satisfy any sweet tooth! This blue-based mint green creme is filled with small matte black glitter pieces, meant to mimic the look of mint chip ice cream. With warmer weather (maybe?) on the way, this polish puts visions of summer heat and icy desserts in my head. There are several mint ice cream-inspired polishes out there, but I think this one is absolutely spot on. It looks almost good enough to eat!

The green base is a bit streaky, but self-levels impressively. I used three coats here. The amount of black glitters in this polish is pretty much perfect. There are enough that you don't have to worry about getting them to spread evenly across the nail, but no so many that they overshadow the pretty pastel base.

I'm rocking another Deborah Lippmann, the classic Happy Birthday, on my toes right now and I think Rockin' Robin will be my next pedi polish. I love wearing pastels on my toes and I think the glitter will be a fun extra twist!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Review: Lush Buffy

It may look plain, but that little bar you see above packs some serious magic! One of my all-time favorite Lush products, Buffy is a body butter bar (try saying that five times fast) that's an exfoliant and and a moisturizer all in one--perfect if you're like me hardly ever remember to put on body lotion!

Buffy could not be any easier to use. Just rub it against wet skin and let the ground rice, almonds and aduki beans go to work polishing your skin and slogging off all the rough, dry bits. While Buffy means business, it isn't overly harsh and its infusions of lavender oil, cocoa butter and shea butter will leave your skin feeling moisturized and silky smooth all day long! After I'm done buffing my skin with the bar, I like to take a minute or two to massage in all of the oils and butters, then rinse it all off. (Extra tip: Heat and moisture makes Buffy melt-y, so I highly recommend keeping it safe and dry in one of Lush's body butter tins.)

Buffy is also great for after shaving. I'll rub my legs with it, then run my razor back over my legs to get all that dead skin off. This gives you the smoothest, softest legs ever! I'm a little self-conscious about my legs, but it helps knowing that Buffy will always leave them looking their best!

Have you tried Buffy? What are your favorite products to help get your skin ready for summer?

Friday, April 11, 2014

Zoya Carter

Zoya Carter is a black-based texture with purple glitter. Second to Liquid Sand, Pixie Dusts are my favorite textured polishes and Carter is a prime example of why. It has a dense, vibrant sparkle that really stands out, especially against the black base. This would be a great polish for a night out!

I've had a major lemming for Carter for a while now, so I was thrilled to find it on clearance a few weeks back! Score!

The formula was great and reached opacity in three coats. Pixie Dusts always wear like iron on me, which is one of the things I love about them--and really, textured polishes in general.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Orly Baked Preview

I gotta admit, the last couple Orly collections haven't really done much for me. But their summer collection, Baked, looks really promising! The collection, which launches in May, is filled with the ultra-saturated brights you would expect from a summer set, but they look a bit more unique than the typical neon shades we see each year.

Neon Heat
Hot Tropics
Tropical Pop

 I'm especially curious to see Lush, Ablaze and Saturated! Are you looking forward to any of these shades?

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Twinsie Tuesday: OPI Extra-va-vaganza

This week's Twinsie Tuesday was an exciting one for me: favorite glitter topper! Now, I have a deep and abiding love for glitter polish, so choosing a favorite would be extremely difficult. Instead, I went with one that's dear to my glitter-obsessed heart: OPI Extra-va-vaganza. This orange, green and silver glitterbomb came out back in the Burlesque Collection and it was the very first glitter polish I ever bought!

I didn't consider until after I finished this mani that Extra-va-vaganza may not technically count as a topper, since it's opaque enough to be worn alone, but hopefully my fellow Twinsies will let me fudge the details a bit here. ;)

The formula is wonderful and reaches opacity in three coats. Extra-va-vaganza looks great layered as well. I especially like it over bronze and purple. It's been a long while since we've seen this type of micro glitter polish from OPI but it's one of my favorite types of glitterbomb, so I hope they bring it back someday!

If you ask me, there's no such thing as too much glitter, so head on over to my Twinsies' blogs for more!

Alaina at The Little Canvas
Amanda at Amandalandish
Chelsea at Nailed Blog
Elizabeth at Did My Nails
Kelly at Tuxarina
Lakeisha at Refined and Polished
Marisa at Polish Obsession
Rachel at Top Coat It
Róisín at Cuti-CLUE-les
Stephanie at A Little Polish
Traci at DrinkCitra

Monday, April 7, 2014

Deborah Lippmann Flowers In Her Hair

Deborah Lippmann Flowers In Her Hair is a mint green creme. Like most of the colors from DL's spring collection, it's not a spectacularly unique shade but damn if it isn't pretty! This soft pastel makes me think of spring flowers and mint chip ice cream. :)

The formula is surprisingly creamy for a pastel. It's not streaky in the slightest and it self-levels nicely. Plus it didn't give me lobster hands!

Even if Flowers In Her Hair is not all that unique compared to some of DL's other offerings, it's an absolutely beautiful color with a standout formula. With my admitted weakness for green polish, I can't help but love this one!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Review: Born Pretty Nail Art Brushes

I don't claim to be any type of nail art expert--far from it. But I think part of my difficulties with nail art stem from not having a good set of tools. So when I had the opportunity to try out this 3-piece brush set from Born Pretty Store, I was cautiously optimistic that these brushes might help me improve my abilities. (I'm using that term loosely.)

This set comes with three brushes, each with differing bristle length and density. The bristles are synthetic, so they don't get all gummed up easily or shed everywhere and the brushes themselves feel reasonably sturdy. Here's a closer look:

The middle brush is my personal favorite for drawing, while the other two work especially well for striping--something I always struggled with before I tried these brushes. Sometimes I feel like I can't draw a straight line to save my life!

I used these brushes for two recent manis: my Twinsie Tuesday purse-inspired nails...

...and my Captain America nails!

They were a big help with both manis, my Cap nails in particular. I could never have even attempted that idea without these brushes!

Cleaning the brushes is super easy. I just take a polish remover pad, douse it with remover, then rub the bristles into the pad. The polish melts right off and then the brushes are good to go!

Whether you're a nail art newbie looking to get a starter brush set or a pro that needs a few new brushes for a good price, this is a nice set. It only costs $3.19, so you're only paying about a dollar per brush for some decent quality tools. I'm really pleased with them and look forward to seeing what else they'll encourage me to try!

If you would like to purchase anything from Born Pretty, they offer a 10% off code for Nailed readers:

Disclosure: This product was sent to me for my honest review. For more information, please see my disclosure policy.