Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Thai Nail Polish Review (And More)

I mentioned a few times that I recently went away on vacation to Thailand. I wanted to share a little more about it since that's mostly what's been messing up my posting schedule lately and I've gotta have something to show for it right? Of course while I was there among all the other site seeing I had to check out the local polish offerings. These were purchased from a little stand at the Bandu day market. Imagine a flea market type setting. In between booths selling live fish, vegetables, housewares, fireworks and anything else imaginable I found this little booth with a glorious assortment of nail polish, hair accessories and makeup. I picked these polishes up for 15 baht each which is about 50 cents each American.

The booth had these two brands, See San and Kelly mixed in together and the bottles look really similar. I wonder if they're related to each other in some way. I attempted to do a bit of research about these brands once I got home, but all my Googling was pretty fruitless so I'll give my own review for anyone who might be curious about the quality of Thai polish.
Red- (I'm calling her Tomato) was featured in this post. I was really happy with the formula on this one. The brush was good and easy to work with. I got almost full coverage in one coat, but used two for good measure. It was also pretty easy to remove without any staining.
Bright yellow- I'm also mostly pleased with this color. It was surprisingly opaque in two coats and it's just as bright as it looks in the bottle. Watch out for a post later this week to see it in action. The brush was a bit mop-ish and hard to control, but considering everything else it's a pretty minor complaint.
Minty green- this was the worst of the three I've tried so far. You can check it out in the picture below. The first coat was thin and really patchy. The second coat was seriously streaky and I was starting to think there was no hope for this one. The third coat was magic. It covered up all the streaks and left the manicure looking flawless. I stamped it with Bundle Monster plate BM-320 and finished up with a coat of Sally Hansen Insta-Dri.
I haven't had time to try the last three, but keep an eye out for future posts featuring my Thailand finds.
Check out a lot more of my rambling and pictures after the jump.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Wet n Wild Pop Art Craze Limited Edition Polish

You've probably noticed by now I'm a complete sucker for inexpensive polish. I don't think I own a bottle that I paid over $7 for and the majority of my collection is $2 and under. When I saw that Wet n Wild had put out a limited edition collection, Pop Art Craze, I had to have them. I embarked on an epic journey to make them mine. Aka- I went out to my local Walgreens right after work and bought them. I was excited to find the collection on sale for 69 cents each during the whole month of July. Unfortunately my Walgreens was already out of one of the colors, but I picked up three of the six for next to nothing.
The six colors are:
Blank Canvas
I already have several bottles of French White Crème so I opted out.
The Clock Strikes Orange
Sunny Side Up is pictured here instead. I thought they looked too similar, but in retrospect I wish I had picked it up anyway. You know.. for the sake of the collection.
Teal Slowly and See
This is the one my Walgreens was out of. I'm a bit confused why teal is in the name because if you check out swatches it's definitely light blue.
Stand the Test of Lime
Listening to Blue Reed
Who Is Ultra Violet?
My first thought was to use these colors for an awesome stamping gradient. I don't have much to show for it because Blue Reed was the only one that wasn't too sheer to show up even over white. What you see here is two coats of French White Crème stamped with Blue Reed at the tips and Sinful Colors, Endless Blue up top with Bundle Monster plate BM-201. I don't remember a time that I've ever hated my nail art more than this. I managed to wear it for one day fully intending to obliterate it once I got home from work. But laziness struck so instead of starting over from scratch I just used a small brush to paint the Pop Art colors on top of my failed stamping. I'm kind of liking how it turned out with the stamp showing through the sheer colors.

I used a small nail art brush to free hand the designs and a dotting tool for the dots. The colors had a psychedelic feel to me so I went with it. I'm much happier with my results the second time around.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Vintage Rose Skittles

I know, another big gap between posts. I can't believe how hard it's been to get back into my blogging routine since getting home. But on the other hand it hasn't exactly been a normal week. My sister had her baby two weeks early and my husband had a pretty serious surgery. Thankfully everyone is doing well in the aftermath of hospitalpocalypse 2013. I've loved my manicure this week because it's so bright and cheery and is somehow helping me feel less stressed out. Does anyone else feel that way about a good mani? I've been seeing this mix and match style of skittles all over Pinterest and I wanted to put my own spin on it. I picked a couple of my favorite colors and came up with this.

The red polish was one of my awesome Thailand finds. I'm going to try to do a full post soon about my overseas polish purchase so I won't say anything else for now. The brand is See San and it doesn't have a name so I'm calling it Tomato. I used two coats on my thumb and pinkie. The index finger is Wet n Wild, I Need a Refresh-Mint. The middle finger is one coat of Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Gilty Party and two coats Golden Rule. For my cute zig zags I used two coats Wet n Wild, French White Creme and stamped it with Refresh-Mint using Bundle Monster plate BM-201. The rose accents were made by swirling my white and red polishes with a dotting tool and using it to draw little c shapes for the petals. The white dots.. dotting tool.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

My First Franken

Hi everyone! It's been way too long. My best intentions to keep up with posts while on vacation didn't really work out. There were too many things to see and do and our internet connection wasn't the best so I decided to take a mini vacation from blogging as well. I'm back now and battling some serious jet lag, but I have a small back log of nails to share so I hope you enjoy these while I get settled back in.
A while back I was lucky to win a giveaway from Becca at Franken Femme. The prize included a custom franken polish (which I'm still dying to try) as well as some loose glitter for my own frankening experiments. The glitter is a mix of just about every color and shape imaginable so I had a lot of fun deciding what to pair it with. I bought a few bottles of the cheap Wet n Wild top coat  to experiment with and got started on my first franken.

I started by pouring out about a quarter of the bottle of top coat to make room for all the glittery goodness. I wanted a teal shade for the base so I poured in alternating amounts of Spoiled, Distant Memory (a dark teal creme with subtle shimmer) and Sinful Colors, Mint Apple (a minty teal shade with more obvious shimmer) until I got the color you see here. Then I started adding in scoops of the glitter mix using a spoon and a homemade foil funnel. I really should have gotten pictures. It was quite a mess, but worked pretty well all things considered. A note for future frankeners- top coat isn't suspension base. All my glitter sinks right to the bottom. It's not really a big deal for me since I can give it a good shake when I want to use it, but you definitely wouldn't want to attempt to make a professional product this way. I applied three coats for maximum glitter coverage. No fishing or pushing was required. I really crammed a lot of glitter into that base. Just look at all that shimmer!

I decided to name this shade Elevator to the Moon. +10 internets to anyone who gets my obscure song reference. And a big thanks to Becca who always reminds me to keep it classy and creative and who inspired this awesome franken.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Catch A Tiger

I can't believe it's been more than a week since my last post already. I had the best intentions of posting while on vacation, but we've been so busy eating delicious Thai food, seeing the sights and petting exotic animals, I haven't gotten a chance to write anything up. On Wednesday we went to the Tiger Kingdom in Chiang Mai. I'm pretty crazy about animals and I don't have that feeling of fear that normal, rational people feel. Does it have fur (or scales, or a shell or hair)? Then I want to pet it! I painted some tiger nails in honor of the tigers we got to see.

I started with two coats of Wet n Wild, French White Creme. Next I used a sponge to sponge on random splotches of an unnamed orange creme then used Wet n Wild, Black Creme to hand paint the tiger stripes with a small nail art brush.

The tigers were amazing. I had some reservations at first about the treatment of animals in a place like this and would never want to contribute to any kind of animal cruelty. Seeing how the staff interacted with the cats and watching them play set my mind at ease. They were definitely not drugged and got quite playful with each other while we were there. They also didn't seem unhappy or bored. It was an awesome experience and I'm so glad I got the opportunity to do it.