Monday, September 28, 2015

Nails Inc Hampstead Gardens- aka The Ugliest Polish Of My Dreams

Nails Inc Hampstead Gardens Ugliest Yellow Polish Ever

Holy crap! Literally! I've finally found the perfect shade of baby poo yellow and it's the ugliest polish in all the right ways. I've been searching for this exact color for over a year and I've finally found it thanks to the wonderful and quirky Concrete and Nail Polish. The second I saw her post I knew I had to have it. Hampstead Gardens from Nails Inc is a perfect match for this ridiculously ugly kitty shirt that I found at a yard sale, and yes, I wear it all the time... because cats.

Nails Inc Hampstead Gardens Ugliest Yellow Polish Ever

Last fall I tried to franken a matching shade for this top, but couldn't quite get that dark mustard base that it needed. I didn't have any luck finding this polish though websites that normally carry Nails Inc but it was on eBay for a reasonable price. I don't know if you can really put a price on a polish this unique though. I probably would have paid much more to add it to my collection.

Nails Inc Hampstead Gardens Ugliest Yellow Polish Ever

The brush was a little wonky right out of the bottle as you can see. I trimmed those long pieces off with a tiny pair of scissors and the brush worked much better afterwards. The formula has a nice consistency, not too wet or goopy. Two coats gives a perfect shiny finish.

Nails Inc Hampstead Gardens Ugliest Yellow Polish Ever

This is my perfect shade for fall. It's so much different from anything else in my collection. I don't often wear the same polish twice in a year, but I can see myself wearing this one again soon. Maybe some art to match the kitty shirt next time?

Nails Inc Hampstead Gardens Ugliest Yellow Polish Ever

Nails Inc Hampstead Gardens Ugliest Yellow Polish Ever

It looks brilliant next to that blue sky too. Seriously can't get enough of this. What's the weirdest shade you've ever fallen in love with?

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Mushroom Nails- Inspired by Olay Active Botanicals

Grey Button Mushroom Nails Inspired by Olay Active Botanicals Snow Mushroom

If you missed my last post I did a review of the Influenster Wellness VoxBox. One of the items was this Olay Active Botanicals face cleanser. It's infused with snow mushroom and doesn't that just sound like the most adorable thing ever?
Of course I had to google snow mushrooms. Not quite what I had pictured and that would have been a nightmare to paint so I did cute little button mushrooms instead.

A snow mushroom
Thanks, internet, for this photo of a snow mushroom.

Grey Button Mushroom Nails Inspired by Olay Active Botanicals Snow Mushroom

You can check out my full review in the previous post. Basically this stuff is pretty ok. It was gentle enough for my sensitive skin and not overly scented. It wasn't too drying either which I've found is so much more important as my skin gets older and even more temperamental. As you can see below, only a small amount is needed to create plenty of lather. Ah, the interesting hand poses one comes up with when trying to show off slippery gel cleanser and nails in the same photo.

Grey Button Mushroom Nails Inspired by Olay Active Botanicals Snow Mushroom

For these nails I started off with two coats of Five Rules from The Giver collection (China Glaze). I freehand painted the shape of mushrooms using white polish. Next, I colored the tops brown with Pumping Gas from Spoiled and then highlighted the stems with Chinchilly from Essie. I really like the way the small print looked. It would have looked so cute do finish out all the nails with the mushrooms, but I was running short on time so I went with my standard two accent nails.

Grey Button Mushroom Nails Inspired by Olay Active Botanicals Snow Mushroom

I had at least two people ask me if these were Jamberrys or stamped. I'm going to take that as a compliment. I think this means I need to come up with more cute patterns to paint.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Influenster Wellness VoxBox Review

Influenster Wellness VoxBox

This week for my triumphant, yet extremely lazy return to my normal blogging schedule I have a special review of the latest Influenster VoxBox. This Wellness VoxBox has a variety of drugstore items sent by Influenster for me to review. Though the items were complementary I guarantee that all opinions are my own. So lets get started with some of these items before I show you which one inspired today's nails.

Jergens Wet Skin Moisturizer: I'm not a huge fan of this product. The concept is ok. You're meant to rub this stuff on in the shower before you dry off- no rinsing necessary. They say your skin absorbs 2x the moisture when it's damp with half the drying time of normal lotion, so this product should moisturize better and more quickly if the claims are true. I couldn't bring myself to actually test it though because the smell! I'm very sensitive to perfumey smells and this one was really floral which is the worst for me. I hope Jergens comes out with an unscented version for us sensitive people. 

Attitude Hair Care 2in1 Shampoo/Body Wash & Dish Soap: I actually really like this one and my husband agrees. It has a really great fresh smell (not too overpowering for my sensitive nose). The big draw of the Attitude brand is their worry-free ingredients. I find that a lot of the "natural" shampoos don't lather well and leave my hair feeling and looking greasy, but not this one. It makes a ton of great lather and leaves my hair feeling nice and clean. This is something I'd seriously consider buying in the future. At $9.99 for a good sized bottle it's worth checking out. Attitude products are available at Target and online at Attitude (check out all their products there). The dish soap has similar lathering abilities and the smell is exactly as described- green apple & basil. I personally find it a little weird to wash food off dishes with something that smells like other food, but it's a pleasant smell and the soap works well to cut through the grease/stuff on the dishes.

Colgate Enamel Health Mouthwash: In the Colgate vs Crest battle I'm a Colgate girl all the way so I was happy to try out this mouthwash. I like that this mouthwash is alcohol free (the husband complained that it didn't burn enough). I can't take the sting of the ones that have alcohol so this was nice for me. The flavor is nice and fresh. I'm super paranoid about my dental hygiene. I won't use anything with artificial sweeteners before bed (yeah.. I'm one of those weird people who makes their own natural toothpaste to avoid that stuff). I do, however, use this in the morning or before leaving the house. As far as claims that this can help reverse enamel softening... I don't know how I'd really test that out, but I'm sure it can't hurt. Dental hygiene for the win!

Influenster Wellness VoxBox UrgentRx

UrgentRx Ache and Pain Relief To-Go: This stuff is a fast dissolving powder that doesn't require water to take... but ohhhh believe me, you'll want some. The flavor could easily be described as woahhhhehhhhhblehhgh... aka lemon lime. I can't really blame the makers though. Aspirin is really bitter and it would be extremely difficult to mask that flavor entirely. They tried really hard with a ton of artificial sweeteners that stuck in my mouth long after the powder had dissolved. On the plus side, it did dissolve really quickly. The packaging is small and flat making it easy to keep in your purse/bag for some kind of headache emergency.

Influenster Wellness VoxBox Olay Active Botanicals Snow Mushroom Inspired Nails

 Olay Active Botanicals Refreshing Gel Cleanser: Finally, a peek at the nails inspired by this product. I'll give a closer look at the nails in my next post. For now here's what I think about this cleanser. It's infused with snow mushroom which is said to hold 500x its weight in water. I'm not sure how that helps clean your face. Possibly some kind of moisturizing effect? I've been using this for the last couple weeks and it's doing a nice job. I don't know if there are any noticeable differences in my skin, but on the bright side it hasn't caused any horrific breakouts which is a valid concern with my sensitive skin. I was previously using an Oil of Olay sensitive skin face wash (unscented with aloe). One of the major differences I've noticed is that this Active Botanicals gel has a slight scent (nothing too strong, but as you might have noticed from my endless comments I usually prefer unscented products). It's also a little "slimy" feeling when I rinse it off. I think that because it's a clear gel it takes a little extra rinsing to get all the soap feeling off. This is definitely nice and I like that it makes me think of adorable little mushrooms while I'm washing, but I think once I'm done with this tube I'll probably go back to my old favorite Olay face wash.

Yaye: Also in this VoxBox is an invitation to download a new health and fitness app, Yaye. Once you download the app you can connect with your friends to set fitness goals and encourage each other because "it's no fun working out by yourself." It's been my long-standing motto that pain is your body's way of telling you something is bad for it. And exercise hurts.. so obviously you shouldn't be doing it. Flawless logic, yes? I do already have a Fitbit which comes with its own app and a bunch of friends to "motivate" me and it hasn't done much good yet. The advantage of the Yaye app is that it's free whereas the cheapest Fitbit is around $50. If you're looking for an inexpensive way to have "fun" exercising with your friends this could be a really good option. I may still try it out just to see how I like the app. I could use all the help I can get at this point.

What do you think of this VoxBox? Anything you'd be interested to try? If you want to join Influenster so you can try out products for yourself click my link in the sidebar to get more info---> or let me know and I can send you an invite.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Magical Moving Day Unicorn Nails

 So, this whole moving thing.. It sounds like a really great idea until it's 100 degrees out and you're trying to shove your cat into a crate in the back of your car which is stuffed to overflowing with various computing equipment and house plants. And then at the hotel the cat finds the one tiny hole in the box spring cover and spends half the night bumping around under the mattress whine/growling. And then you get to the new apartment and spend the next week living in a box maze to rival the one in Maze Runner (btw, look at these awesome Maze Runner nails I did here and did you see the next movie is coming out soon?). Moving makes me rambly, I think. It also makes me really bad at blogging. I didn't plan any posts ahead so I took a few weeks off to get resettled and I should be back for good now.

The good news is I'm really enjoying my new job and living in Oregon. It's beautiful here and the weather has been perfect. I'm looking forward to the cooler winter months spent cozied up in my new office with all my nail stuff.

Now, let's talk about these nails. I needed something very magical for moving day and what better than unicorns and pastel gradients? The purple is China Glaze, Plur-ple and the pink and blue from the gradient are UV Meant To Be and Glow With the Flow (all from the Electric Nights collection). It also needed a very special sparkle nail. I used Cosmo from Zoya for this one. I can't say enough how much I love this polish! It's one of the Pixie Dust polishes and I expected it to be gritty, but it's not at all. The texture is subtle, and it packs a ton of sparkle. I did top coat it because I didn't want it snagging on anything while I was packing. One coat of top coat had it completely smooth. I also used stamping plates BM-615 and BM-406 for the unicorn and swirls. I topped off all the non-sparkly nails with China Glaze, Ghoulish Glow for a hidden surprise.

Cosmo is amazing in the sun. I'm definitely going to need a full set of these nails soon.

Surprise! Glow in the dark unicorn! I did the stamping over the glow in the dark polish and you can just see the outline of the unicorn on top. These nails were really fun and helped keep my spirits up though many long and tedious hours of packing and driving.

Here's a rare sight: the saddest unicorn nails ever. It was almost two weeks before I had time to paint again and my nails and cuticles were looking awful... except for Cosmo. That polish wore like iron! It has barely any tip wear in the wake of the utter destruction of the other nails. I'm happy to say I've been thoroughly oiled, mani bombed and polished back into shape. I'm looking forward to getting back into my routine and showing you what I've been up to all these weeks that I haven't been posting regularly.