Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Island Girl On Vacation

It seems I'm becoming quite the world traveler. Last week I was in Las Vegas and now I'm off to Thailand to visit family. Posts may be a little wonky over the next two weeks, but I'm planning to keep them coming. I almost had a hard time choosing what to wear on vacation, but then I remembered I can change it once I get there. No way could I make it 2 weeks with the same nails! Last week in Vegas I made extra sure I could go to ABC Store to pick up some Island Girl polishes since Vegas, Hawaii and apparently a very limited selection online are the only places to get them. Of course I couldn't wait to try them out, plus they're very vacation-y colors.

I've got on two coats of Island Girl, Aloha Paradise which is a beautiful teal/sea foam color. It was a little patchy on the first coat, but the second cleared that right up. I did a sponged gradient with Zoya, Julieanne (3 passes with the sponging to darken it up). The sparkles on top are Island Girl, Island Sun. It has little shreds of teal and purple as well as some blue and purple hearts. A little fishing and mushing was required, but overall not too bad. This is just one strategically placed coat of glitter on top. I finished it off with two coats of Sally Hansen Insta-Dri to smooth over some of the rough shreds.

My coworkers were sure to tease me plenty as I tried to explain why I was dragging them into ABC. I was really good (or bad?) and only bought two. I'm sure it would have been more if I didn't have to worry about getting them through the airport in my carry on. Just look at all those colors! 

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Jamberry: Tangerine Ikat

I'm excited to show you my first Jamberry today. I've tried some cheaper nail stickers which were mostly disastrous so I didn't have really high hopes, but I was very pleasantly surprised. A fellow polish addict and Jamberry consultant Shea sent me a sample sheet and I've finally had the time to try it out. The Jamberry shields aren't just stickers and are supposed to last up to two weeks on fingers. I haven't had mine on long yet, but it's holding strong a day later even through a shower and some dish washing.

To apply I followed the directions on the Jamberry Website. It was easier than I had anticipated to get it on and smooth out all the bumps. I warmed it with my blow dryer for a few seconds as suggested and stuck it in place. It just needed a tiny bit of trimming around the cuticles, but otherwise fit perfectly. I did wrap the tip with some clear top coat "just in case" but I'm sure it would have been fine without. I used Finger Paints, Don't Make A Scene for the other nails. It's a perfect match to the background on the ikat shield. If you're interested in trying Jamberry check out Shea's Jamberry site. They have tons of cool patterns that would be hard to replicate with polish alone plus some nice basics if you're looking for a longer lasting alternative. With no drying time and pretty much painless application these have some real potential. 

And of course I can't help myself. Every time I hear Jamberry I think of this video:

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Dressed Up in Studs

 Hello from Vegas. I'm here this week for work, but I couldn't resist getting a good post in. I thought about painting a tiny Vegas strip on my nails but somehow that seemed kinda like wearing a band's t-shirt to their own concert so I went with the next obvious choice... studs! These also match the dress I'll be wearing tonight (yeah, check out the cheesy title) so I'm excited about that. 

I started with two coats of each polish. The black nails are LA Colors, Black Velvet. The grey is Nina Ultra Pro, Ink-ling (loving this shade) and the green is Sally Hansen, Limestone. I used scotch tape to tape off sections on my middle and pinkie fingers and painted some color blocks. I added the studs in two sizes from Born Pretty by painting a section of clear polish and pressing them down firmly. I topped it off with two coats of clear polish to seal the edges and keep them from catching and popping off.

I didn't get this posted quite as early as I'd hoped (silly work meetings) but that means I can show you a picture of the dress. Behold the matchy-ness. Well, aside from everything looking blue- this was taken right outside the Blue Man Group show which we all got to see for free thanks to the company.


Monday, June 17, 2013

Nails With Friends

Today I have something a little different for you. My friend Angie and her family came over for dinner and I got to paint some nails. I thought it would be fun to show the results of our manicure party. I showed the girls the Helmer and let them choose any colors they wanted. They chose surprisingly quickly. Never underestimate the power of girls to know what they like. Of course their little brother wanted in on the fun too so I got to do my first ever boy nails in an appropriately manly camo design.
Angie liked the camo so much she had me do her nails too. Below is a set of adorably matching mother/son nails. For these we started with a black base coat- the standard black from LA Colors, but I can't read the color name on the label since it's also printed in black. I used a small nail art brush to paint on random spots of color using Sally Hansen Hard as Nails in Limestone, Pumping Gas by Spoiled and Holly-Day from China Glaze.

One of the girls picked out some blues and glitters so we came up with this cute alternating dots and glitter manicure. The lighter blue is China Glaze, Shower Together and the darker shade is Ulta's Moody Blues. I used a dotting tool to make the dots and then topped the dark blue with 2 coats of Two-Faced Tint from Sation.

The last one I have for you is lady bugs, but I can't take credit. Angie jumped in and helped me out so here's her blogger debut as a nail artist. These cute lady bugs were created with Color Club's Berry and Bright so not only do they look super fun, they also smell like berries. The stripes and black dots were painted on with a black striper polish and the white dots are acrylic paint applied with a dotting tool.

I had a ton of fun doing all these nails. The designs came out super cute and I bet they'll love wearing them. Hopefully the husbands weren't too bored waiting for the fast drying top coat and they'll let us do it again sometime soon.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Meme Week: Ain't Nobody Got Time For That

Today is the last day in the Meme Week series. The theme of this challenge is inspired by Sweet Brown and the things that she (or anyone else) ain't got time for. If you want to see more of Sweet Brown including some funny videos check out Know Your Meme.
Today I wanted to try a manicure that I've been in love with since I first saw it. This one is by Sarah at Chalkboard Nails. Click here to see the original. I've never had time to recreate it though because lets be honest... ain't nobody got time (or patience) to sit there and individually place each piece of glitter for this mosaic style mani. Well, last night I blocked out the whole evening and made time. Here's the result:

I had some major bubbling issues with this one! Not only over the glitters, but for some reason on the plain nails as well. You can't really see it in person, but the camera really picks it up. This is one (probably too thick coat) of Wet n Wild Black Creme. I used glitter from Born Pretty which I placed individually using a toothpick dipped in clear polish. Horrible bubbles aside what do you think? Was it worth the time spent?


 That wraps up meme week. It's been fun and there has been some truly inspired meme art this week. I've really enjoyed seeing what everyone came up with. Check the links below to see what the other ladies ain't got time for today.


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Meme Week: Condescending Wonka

Condescending Wonka is the meme for day six. It features Willy Wonka from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with a sarcastic or condescending caption. This was the only nail polish related Condescending Wonka I could find. I promise as a blogger I will try never to use the word hotolicious to describe any nail polish.
I decided to do a Charlie and the Chocolate Factory themed mani which turned out to be much harder than I expected. I was originally going to do the everlasting gobstopper from the movie on my ring finger. That thing is a weird geometric shaped piece of candy that I don't think I'd want to suck for even a minute, no less forever. As you can see that was a massive fail and after repainting it three times I finally gave up and just stamped it instead.

Here are close-ups with their inspiration from the movie.

Meme Week: Like A Sir

I can't believe we're more than half way done with Meme Week already. Today's meme is Like A Sir. This meme refers to the feeling you get when you do something fancy. Having nicely painted nails definitely makes me feel like a (lady?) sir. Look at that guy, he's totally showing off a killer mani.


I started with two coats of Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Ion. I used black and white acrylic paint to freehand the Sir and the monocle. I love the detail you can get with acrylics. Just look at those chain links. I used striping tape and Wet n Wild, Black Creme to create pinstripes on my index finger. The pinkie has two coats of Peaceful Opposition from Orly. I really like this silver glitter in a milky base. I feel like I had to do a little fishing to get the glitter coverage I wanted, but overall not bad. 

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Meme Week: Cats (In Spaaaaace)

Of all the challenge days I think I'm the most excited for this one. There are just so many cat memes and each one is better than the last (at least in my opinion). I wanted to paint All The Cats, but I only have five fingers so I had to pick some of my favorites. From thumb to pinkie we have: Nyan Cat, Cheezburger Cat, Grumpy Cat, Hipster Space Cat, and I had to sneak in my own cat, but he doesn't have his own website... yet.

The internet is such an awesome place for cats. One minute they can be innocently napping in the hallway and the next they're flying through space.
This is my cat Styx 

Space borrowed from this site

I love cats, and cats in space are even better so I started out by painting some galaxy nails. For the cats I tried out the paper decal technique. I re-sized the cats to about 100x100 pixels (this includes some dead space where the background was before I trimmed it off) and printed them out on regular white paper. I cut around the faces and then curled each piece of paper to help it lay closer to the nail. I painted a coat of clear polish one nail at a time and used an orange stick to help press the decal down for several minutes until the polish had hardened. I topped that off with two coats of top coat to seal it all in.
A couple technical notes about the paper decals: I think my printer is low on some ink colors so the images weren't that sharp to begin with, but putting the white paper on a dark background also doesn't help. The black started to show through some of the lighter areas once the paper absorbed some of the topcoat. A white background would make this much less noticeable. I wore these about four days before the top coat started wearing thin and the paper got a bit wet when I washed my hands. I think they'd last even longer with reapplication of top coat which I didn't do.

Now that the pesky nails are out of the way let's get to the good stuff: cat videos. These are my top three cat videos of all time. If you haven't seen number one please, please watch it. I promise your entire life will suddenly become complete.
1. Oh Long Johnson

2. Boots & Cats
1. Can't Hug Every Cat

Meme Week: U Jelly?

U Jelly? Or jealous, for the uninitiated. The internet is confused about what the Jelly meme looks like. I did a little research at Know Your Meme and it appears that the the original Jelly face is more like this top one here, but a google search brings up the troll face in much higher quantity. The third picture is apparently the horrifying result of Jelly and Troll making a baby.

Uggggh... Nightmares
This should probably be viewed as part two of my jelly stampwich fail from last week. I've been very majorly jelly of this gorgeous stampwich by Cazzy at SpecialGirl Nails and My Pointe Exactly from OPI. Since I refuse to be able to afford OPI prices I started searching the internet for cheap drugstore grey jellies. Do you know what I found? Nothing. At all. Until I finally came across someone talking about being able to make a jelly from clear polish and whatever grey you might already have. I headed right out to the store to buy some cheap clear top coat and attempted to dupe MPE to the best of my ability. It's not exact, but I do really like the result.

I used a bottle of Wet n Wild clear top coat (the 99 cent variety) and poured a bit off the top for shakeability. Next I started indiscriminately dropping in drops from China Glaze, Recycle which is a medium grey creme. That was coming out too light so I started adding in drops of a jelly-like black I have, Savvy, Ebony Black Nail Art (don't ask me why a "nail art" polish is mostly jelly in nature). This darkened it up in a weird way so I added some Sally Hansen, Ion to lighten in back up. I think I may add some more of this later to give it more of the milky quality that the OPI polish has. It was a work in progress and I kept swatching it on one nail at a time. I think you can tell the pinkie looks a bit lighter than the pointer. I did two coats of the jelly then stamped with Bundle Monster plate BM-312. I added two more coats to create the stampwich.

Nailed it? Ehhhh.. close enough.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Meme Week: Rage Faces

Welcome to day two of Meme Week: Rage Faces. There are so many to choose from, but for once I didn't have a hard time picking. This one holds a special place in my heart... maybe because I've worked way too much retail in my life.
It just seems like such an appropriate response for most of my daily interactions.

The white nails are two coats of Wet n Wild, French White Creme. The face and lettering were free handed using acrylic paint and a teeny paintbrush. For the other nails I wanted to go with a kind of suble blood-curdling rage look and I thought water spotted over red was the way to go. I started with one coat of Spoiled, Hit The Brakes and then added random splotches of Color Club, Berry And Bright and Sation, Sparkling Ruby. I got the spotted look by dropping black polish, Wet n Wild Black Creme, into water like you would for a water marble and then spraying it with an alcohol based body spray before dipping the nails.

Here's the close-up. Very scary.
Don't forget to check out what everyone else is doing for Rage Face day.