Saturday, September 28, 2013

Influenster Sargento Cheese Vox Box: A Cheese Koozi!??!! and Matching Nails

A story about love, betrayal, Influenster and how I got free cheese. 
A while back one of my blogger friends, Becca of Franken Femme, posted about the Vox Box she received from Influenster. It looked awesome! Free things to review? Sign me up! And so I did sign up. I spent hours.. filled out a couple dozen surveys and did a couple dozen more reviews of products, linked up all my social media accounts and waited.. for a long time. Days even! Influenster gives you a score based on your social media presence. Two weeks later my score was still firmly stuck at 0. How is that even possible? It was fun filling out all the surveys and reviews, but shouldn't it count for something? So I wrote the whole thing off. I didn't sign in, I didn't do any more reviews. I basically forgot all about it until I got an email saying I had pre-qualified for a Vox Box. It was truly a very exciting day. When I found out I'd get to review cheese I was even more excited. I love a lot of things, but cheese rates really highly up there. Somehow my Influenster score had magically jumped to 69 and a box with a coupon for a free pack of cheese and a delightful cheese koozi (really never thought I'd be typing those words together) arrived in my mail box.

Tons more pictures and my Sargento Cheese review after the jump.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Toesday: Teal Toes

Happy Toesday! I was at a complete loss for inspiration this time so I just started pulling polishes out of the helmer and the teal ones caught my eye the most. Then I couldn't commit to just one shade so I did an ombre effect across all the toes. I love teal and red together so I added some stamping, stripes and dots. These came out pretty crazy. I feel like I have schizophrenic toes this week.

What I used from left to right- 
Wet n Wild- I Need a Refresh-Mint
Sinful Colors- Mint Apple
Island Girl- Aloha Paradise
Revlon Top Speed- Ocean
Spoiled- Distant Memory

For the nail art-
Wet n Wild- Red Red
Pinkies- Bundle Monster plate BM-214
Middle and big right toe- BM-210
Big left toe- dotting tool
Middle right- striping brush

Sunday, September 22, 2013

White Washed

I have a confession to make: I love white nail polish. I could easily fall into a rut where I use white non-stop for a month. It makes a great background for so many different kinds of nail art, it's crisp and it has all the brightness of a neon without the pesky color. If I was emotionally capable of wearing only one color on my nails I would definitely wear white by itself on a regular basis. But I'm still me so of course I had to throw on some glitter and a few studs.

I started out with two coats of LA Colors' white polish. I used tape to tape off opposite halves of two nails and then painted on Love and Beauty, Crystal/Multi. Love and Beauty has the worst names for their polishes. I think they try for being descriptive and somehow fail even at that. I'm going to rename this one Balloon Confetti because it reminds me of Mylar birthday balloons all shredded up. I stuck on three studs from Born Pretty on the middle nail for a bit more detail.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Witcher (Video Game) Nails

 Did I mention yet that I love video games? Aside from nails they're my biggest obsession/hobby so I'm excited about these nails. The inspiration for today's post came from one of the entries in my giveaway (which is still open if you're interested). One way to enter is by commenting with what you'd like to see more of and one awesome reader said that she'd like to see more gamer nails. I started this blog with the intention of doing a ton of those and somehow got distracted- so many things to paint and such a short attention span! I'm glad to get my priorities back in line and show you these nails inspired by one of my all time favorite games, The Witcher. There are 2 games out in the series now with a third one in the works for next year. I can't wait, but luckily I have plenty more games to distract me until then.

I loved the colors and grittiness of this poster so I copied the look for my nails. In case you're curious here are the basics of the game: Geralt is one of the last remaining witchers (a monster hunter with mutations that give him super human powers). Geralt has amnesia so you learn his story with him as you go. The moral choices you make determine the game play so the story can be a bit different each time and there's always the lingering question of who the real monsters are, the beasts or the men. I'm a sucker for a good story in a game and this one has a great one. If you've played it let me know- do you love it as much as I do?

I started with two coats of LA Colors, Whipped which is a nice nude. I used a make up sponge to sponge on a darker brown, Pumping Gas by Spoiled mostly to the top and sides of my nails. I went back with the sponge and my black polish from LA Colors to darken up the tops even more and then used a small brush to paint random stripes and blotches in black. The lettering was painted on with the small brush and Sally Hansen Chrome polish in Pure Chrome. For the red nail and the red accents I used Wet n Wild, Red Red. On my thumb I also sponged around the edges with Sation, Sparkling Ruby to give it some depth. The distressed look was made by wiping most of the polish off the brush from the black polish and swiping that over the nail.

Here's one of my "off" hand. Without the lettering these would be perfect for Halloween. 

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Chevrons and a Top Coat Disaster

I'm finally back with another post. I fully intended on writing this up Friday night but I fell victim to the siren call of the REI used gear sale. If you have an REI nearby you probably know what I'm talking about. Every third month they sell off all the gear that people have returned at heavily discounted prices. Some of the stuff is pretty sorry looking, but the majority of the items are brand new or barely used. They hand out numbered wristbands and have a lottery to see who goes in first. My husband got picked in one of the first groups and while I was upstairs looking at a pair of $100 shoes he found the exact same pair in the sale for $18. You all know I love a good sale so it was a great night. Speaking of sales (and getting back to the topic of nail polish) I picked up a couple polishes from the new Sinful Colors Leather Luxe collection. My Walgreens had them on sale for 99 cents each.

I used Sinful Colors, Calypso for my base. This is a beautiful dark teal shade and it truly was a one coater. The formula and coverage was great- no streaks at all which was unexpected for such a dark polish. Next I used striping tape to block off the chevron stripes and painted them in with one of my new Leather Luxe polishes, My Turn, which is the matte grey shade. If you want to see the rest of the seven matte shades from the collection check out this blog

I was really loving this chevron manicure and then everything went horribly wrong with the top coat. I was getting to the bottom of my bottle of Sally Hansen Insta-Dri and apparently in its old age it has grown to hate me with a vengeance. Normally this is my favorite top coat. It seems to dry as hard and fast as Seche Vite, but it's a couple dollars cheaper which I love. I've had the same problem with every brand of top coat I've tried becoming unusable by the bottom 1/4 of the bottle. Do you have this problem too and what do you do about it? Do you just toss it out, use polish thinner, something else? I hate to waste good polish, but this is obviously not good polish anymore! Here's a close up of the bubbles in all their glory.

Also, this picture: I can never unsee it and it will always bother me now!! 
Borrowed from this site.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Toesday: Navy With Stamped Stripes

It's Toesday again! I can't believe I'm still feeling brave enough to show my feet on the internet, but here I am for the 3rd week. I love painting all my little toes a dark color and then doing something different and fun on the big toes. I started by accident with the design in this post (which I did over a year ago) and now can't stop doing it. I think this navy/nude rendition came out really nice. 

I used Ulta, Moody Blues for the little toes and stamp and Ulta, Set the Nude for the big toes. The formula on both polishes is great and I love the grey tone this nude has. The stamp is Bundle Monster plate BM-210. My stamping skills are still a little lacking, but the second attempt was respectable enough to show. What do you think? Can I make foot blogging happen?

Sunday, September 8, 2013

50 Follower Giveaway!

This weekend marks an exciting milestone for my blog! I've reached 50 followers on GFC (and 48 on Bloglovin'). I'm so proud of how far my little blog has come since I started in December. I couldn't be more grateful for all of my readers and the friendships I've formed with my fellow nail nerds. You all keep me inspired and challenge me to come up with bigger and better designs for my posts. To say thanks I've put together a little giveaway.

Revlon nail polishes- These jewel tones are perfect for winter which can't come soon enough for me! I'm ready to say goodbye to this heat and get back to sweaters and dark polish colors.

These nail stickers change color in the sun- how cool is that?

 Two Sinful Colors nail art stripers, cute stickers and a trial size lilac lotion from Ulta

Rhinestones... tons of glorious rhinestones.

Now for the super fun rules and such:
+ This giveaway is open to US residents only. I'm still a small blogger of modest means and all the postage restrictions I've been hearing about (not to mention shipping costs) make me fearful that the prize won't successfully make it to a destination outside the US. Please forgive me wonderful overseas readers. I still have lots of love for you all.
+ The giveaway will start 9-8-13 and run until 10-11-13. The winner will be randomly chosen and contacted by email. The winner will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen.

Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Racing Stripes

With Labor Day on Monday it's been a short work week, but I think the real reason it's flown by may be these racing stripes I painted on my nails. Ok, really though- I am no where near this chipper about my work week. What is it about 4 day weeks that just make every single day feel like a Monday on repeat? Thankfully tomorrow is Friday and then some well deserved sleeping in! I hope the rest of you have some big napping plans for the weekend as well.

I started out with two coats of China Glaze, When Stars Collide from their holo collection. The formula on this one was a little disappointing. It was gooey and patchy in the application. The silver shade wasn't like that, so I don't know what's up with this purple. It also chipped horribly right away. I'd lost the corners off at least half my nails before I even got to work the next morning. It's too bad, the color really is quite pretty. I added some white stripes using the brush from the bottle of a white LA Colors, then I made a second smaller stripe on top with a striping brush and China Glaze, Cosmic Dust (another holo).

Monday, September 2, 2013

Fun Nail Foils

I can't tell you how excited I am about today's post. After a month of waiting I finally got my order of nail foils from Dollar Nail Art. I don't think they normally take so long for shipping, but they mysteriously decided to hold my order for some reason I still haven't been able to figure out. The results and great prices have been making up for that so far though. They have a ton of colors and each one is just a dollar. The only catch is their $25 minimum order, but I don't know if you can really say that getting 25 foils is a bad thing.

Foils have always reminded me a bit of dichroic glass which has micro-layers of metals encased in the glass. Depending on the light hitting it different colors are reflected. I used 8 different foils to recreate this look on my nails.

Image borrowed from here.

A great blog for foils is Walk In My Eyeshadow. Natalie has been doing Foil Focus Friday for quite a while. She reviews foils from Dollar Nail Art and ever since seeing them on her blog I knew I had to try them.

This was actually really easy to do and got tons of compliments. I started with a coat of LA Colors black polish. The next step was to paint on the foil glue that comes with the foils and let it dry for about 10 minutes until it's completely clear and tacky. I had cut small rectangles of the foils and dabbed them into the nail glue in random patterns. The foil stuck to the glue very easily. I haven't tried to cover an entire nail with just one color yet, but I think it would be trickier to get it all filled in. With the patches of colors mistakes are part of the design. Since the colors were randomly placed it was easy to cover up any bald spots. It stayed on pretty well too. I wore it for several days and got only minimal tip wear. Now for the colors I used: Electric Blue, Rainbow Swirl, White Gold, Passion Pink, Violet, Emerald, Tearose and Teal.