Sunday, August 30, 2009
Saturday, August 29, 2009
Gradients were one of those things that I'd wanted to try, but never had the balls to actually do it. I thought it took a lot of skill and a lot of products to pull off. Well, it took a moderate amount of skill, but nothing huge, and as for the products? All you need is a bunch of polish, a plastic plate, and a makeup sponge. And time. You need time. But other than that... it's easy peasy.
I recently ordered about 10 nail foils from Nail Art Plus. Of course, it was after I placed my order that I saw they were on the "bad" list on the Nail Board Shopping Savvy notepad. Stupid me for not checking beforehand. My order wasn't much, around $20, but it was still enough to be nervous about. I did a quick google search and saw where another blogger, Nihrida, had purchased from them and had received her order, but I still wasn't confident. I'd paid for the faster shipping, and the site said my order would be here in 7 days. It wasn't. I ended up filing a paypal claim and received my refund yesterday.
I'm not sure if anyone else wants to try nail foil, but sites with a good selection are few and far between. That's why I went w/ this one. But, I definitely wouldn't purchase from Nail Art Plus again. I would have gladly waited more than the stated 7 days from my order, had she communicated at all with me. I never even received confirmation that she had my order, just my paypal notice. I'm going to try Dollar Nail Art next, though their selection of foils isn't as good. There also is a UK company with a good selection, but I kind find anything on them, so I'm a little wary. The site is Glitterati Foil, and since they are in the UK, prices are more expensive in dollars than sites based here.
Does anyone have any good sources for nail foil?
Friday, August 28, 2009
I liked it on my nails, but I can't leave well enough alone, so I added a konad design. This is ChG Adore (yeah, you guessed it... a Romantique). It's a turquoise blue metallic and like all Romantiques, was made for da konad. I used plate m20. Here are a couple pics of the finished product.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Plum Pudding is one of the colors I ordered and actually received from LBBS on eBay. I mistakenly stated earlier that it looked like a purple version of SSN. It's nothing like a purple version of SSN, except for the fact it has silver glitter. So, my bad. Nonetheless, it's still a pretty color. Not as amazing as I thought it would be when I saw it in the bottle, but still pretty. Here's a pic I took of this color by itself:
It definitely is a plum color, not a true purple. It looks like jam on the nails. Glittery jam. It has silver and purple square shaped glitter, but there's more in the bottle than on the nail. It also has a slight frost to the finish, which by itself was not flattering on my hands. It's also a tad brushstrokey, but that's just because of the frost and it wasn't too much to overcome. I have no idea what collection it is from as it's an old bottle/formula Orly and was most likely d/c'd either late '90's/early 2000's. Ah. I forgot how old formula Orlys smelled. Chemically goodness. If you are interested in Plum Pudding, you can get it on eBay, but proceed with a tad bit of caution. Seller states they have 10 in stock, but as I found out with Tourmaline, that's not always the case. You may want to contact them in advance to check, or you can just order it and then if it's OOS, they'll give you a refund. I can't 100% recommend them, though.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Monday, August 24, 2009
So, I've started a little side hobby that I refer to as "online dustying". Mainly, I do it on eBay, but you can also find some HTFs at TD or VNS. I think my most prized eBay find was Vampire State Building. Most sellers have it for $25+, but I managed to snag it for $9+ (very reasonable) shipping. I've also found OPI Rose to the Ovation, OPI Berry Good Dancers, OPI Music Hall Curtain Call, OPI You Make Me Vroom, OPI Mat-adore Red, and Essie Mint Chintz on eBay for great prices.
Most recently, I found several old formula/bottle/size Orlys for crazy cheap (around $3 each shipped). I got Total Darkness, Earth Red, Plum Pudding, and Tourmaline. What I actually received were the first 3 plus "1960". Since Tourmaline was $2.99, I reordered it hoping it was just a mistake. I figured I'd keep 1960 because it was so cheap. Alas, no dice. I received an email tonight from the seller, LBBS Outlet (Lee Beauty and Barber Supply), stating Tourmaline was OOS. They did offer me a replacement item, which could be as much as $5 over my purchase price. Or they offered to refund my money (on the 2nd Tourmaline... no mention of the first one). I requested OPI Boris & Natasha and we'll see what happens. I'm not really upset about the 2nd one being OOS. Afterall, they are trying to make it right. What is bugging the shit out of me is the fact that rather than tell me the first Tourmaline I purchased was OOS, they sent me another polish. It's pretty enough, but NOT what I ordered. I suppose if it was more than 3 bucks, I'd feel like raising a stink. As it is, I'm just going to leave them neutral feedback on the first Tourmaline unless they address my concerns, which I stated in my email response.
This kind of bums me out because I was all set to rave about the old skool Orlys being offered by LBBS. However, I now have to tell you to proceed with caution if you are interested. They did have a few rare ones, though I consider all old Orlys rare. Plum Pudding being one I can think of off the top of my head and Crocodile Rock being the other. I didn't purchase CR, as I knew it'd look like ass on me, but if you are interested, I now suggest you contact the seller before purchasing. Also, I had plans on getting a few more of these Orlys, but now I'm wary. But not wary enough to stop online dustying. UPDATE: I never received any response from LBBS, just a refund for my 2nd Tourmaline. They never responded to my email. I'm not saying not to buy from them, just know that they sell OOS items.
This is just part of the risk associated with this little game I play. I'm willing to accept it because it's part of the hunt for me, but it's a little bit of a letdown if you have your heart set on something, like I did on Tourmaline. I remember it from back in the day, and it was so awesome.
On an up note, the other 3 colors I got are amazing, especially Plum Pudding. It kind of looks like a purple Starry Starry Night. I plan on doing my next mani in this. It may require a little bit of tweaking as it's an old ass bottle, but I think it will be great in the end. Oh how I've missed you, old Orly bottles.
And... before I get too off-track, I want to give a quick mention to TD and VNS for their HTFs. TD lists them all online with their regular stock. I've gotten several from them, but nothing super rare. I think my rarest was OPI Red Like Roses. As for VNS, they have Emerald Sparkle in the ChG section, but many of the d/c'd Essies and OPIs will have to be ordered over phone or email (they'll send you an invoice). You can't order these brands online anyway if you are a non-pro. When you order from them, they'll send you a d/c'd list with your. Prices for Essie are $5 and OPIs are $6.95. Not a bargain by any means, but they have a few like the Sugarplum Yum and Nutcracker Sweet sets, that are going for $35 on ebay, for less than $15 for the set. They also, at the moment, have a VHTF Essie for $5. I'm waiting to purchase it until some of the ChG glitters are in because shipping would still be $9, so I'm hoping they still have it. No, it's not SSN, but close. whispers Viva La Vespa. Please don't buy the last one.
Well, that's it for now, I suppose. I'll have pics of my current KOTD and my old Orly mini haul tomorrow.
Thank you!!! Brooke, I really appreciate you mentioning my blog in one of your posts.
If you don't read Brooke's blog, you really should check it out (click on her name to hyperlink). She posts very frequently and she has the cutest pics of her dog, Dinky. I love me some Dinky pics. So freakin' adorable. :)
That's all for now. Once my camera's charge (yes, it's always dead), I'll have a new post or two. I just wanted to give Brooke a shout-out before it slipped my mind again. Thanks again, Brooke!
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Recently, I've been using Rush High Speed from Sally's and while I like it, there are things about it I would change. For one, it is the polar opposite of SV in consistency, and given my dislike of SV's thickness, you'd think that would be a plus. Unfortunately, it's too runny. I have to be very mindful of how much I have on my brush, or I'll have it all over my fingers. It does thicken up over time, which kind of brings me to my next dislike. I get the big pro size bottle, because it's easier to handle than the smaller bottle and it's a better value, but I always have to get a new bottle when the old one is 2/3rds gone. That last third gets too gumpy. I've added thinner in the past and while a little helps, too much changes the formula too much, so it never dries. Lastly, Rush TC tends to not play nice with Zoya polishes. I find Zoyas to be fickle on the whole, but on Zoyas that take 3 coats, they never cure with the Rush TC. Not only are they dentable hours later, they are a gooey mess.
So yesterday I found myself in Sally's (for the second time, mind you) looking for a good TC. Since I don't like SV, I only had 2 real options left... Poshe and Out the Door. I got OtD, figuring I could try Poshe if OtD didn't work for me. I haven't tried it on Zoyas yet, so I don't know if the problem will continue with the OtD, but I will give it a test run before I take my current nails off. However, for general use, this TC rocks. While Rush is fast, OtD is crazy fast. It claims on the bottle that it takes 45 seconds to dry, and while the nails were still dentable a couple minutes later, they were dry to the (light) touch. Within 15 minutes, they were dried completely. I definitely plan on keeping this bad boy around.
OtD is available at Sally Beauty Supply. I got the small bottle which is .5 oz for $3.99 w/ my Sally's card. They also have a humongo bottle, which I think is 2.5 oz for $8.99. I'll probably get that one when this one runs low.
So, if you are looking for a new TC, check out OtD. If you don't have a Sally's in your area, you can find it at Sally's online. If you do a Google search, you can also find it in various other sizes at other online beauty suppliers. There's even a 16 ouncer. Wow. Now that's a crap ton of TC. :P
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Anyway, back to the nails. Pic first:
I got these nails to try other glue-on nails that bill themselves as "salon alternatives", like the Revlons I received earlier in the month. Last night, my ChG Stroll mani started coming off and I was exhausted and didn't feel like dealing with it. Thus, I had to put something quick on this morning (usually, I do my nails at night, so I can take my time). That's usually when I reach for the pre-painted frenches.
I like this design in the package. It was a pretty irridescent purple base with an irridescent white tip that look liked it had a but of a purple-ish sheen. This was the french mani I always had in mind to get, but was never able to translate my wishes to my nail tech, back when I got acrylics for and after my wedding (8 yrs ago).
Unfortunately, I don't like them at all on my nails. For one, it's they are too damn short. If I had any sort of natural nails, I'd have to file them down like mad to be able to wear these. Also, it is a much more blatant french mani on me, than in the package. I thought the french design itself, was going to be more muted. However, they are numbered clearly and the design does look clean, so there are a couple of high points to these, but I don't see them lasting more than tonight, perhaps tomorrow. You can get these at Sally Beauty Supply for $5.99 with your Sally's card.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
I first saw this color when the collection came out, but it wasn't until I saw it on on Nailz-In-Aus's blog that became instantly smitten with it, and I added it to my VNS order on a whim. Boy howdy, am I happy I did. Sky-High Top is from ChG's Summer 2009 Custom Kicks collection. I own one other polish from this collection, Sneakerhead, and while I've swatched it, it still remains untried. It's still available at e-tailers and eBay sellers, but I'm certain that all Sally's that had this collection had clearanced it out as it's not in the regular line up (pssst, ChG... it should be :P ).
As for the end result, all I can say is Ho.Lee.Crap-adoodle. My love for blue polish has recently reached new heights, but this is by far the most balls-out blue I've tried thus far. It's "smack yo mama" blue. ChG describes this color as periwinkle. Um, not so much. IMO, the actual color is more of a cerulean blue, or perhaps an azure blue, or maybe a happy medium between the two, but it's not periwinkle. At any rate, it's really, really pretty and I can't stop looking at it.
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Friday, August 14, 2009
Now, normally, I'm not a thick french mani kinda girl. They look a little "Real Housewives of Whatever" to me. To each their own, but not normally for me. However, I must be smoking some good crack, but the look of a glitter french is strangely attractive to me, and I have no idea why. Not one done with glitter as the french (which I want to try too and am planning as my next mani, actually), but rather a small line of glitter between the french and the nail. You can see this in the pic below:
Compared to the Revlons, I think I prefer the overall look of the IBDs over the Revlons, simply because I couldn't see my damaged nails through the glue-ons, as the beige-pink base was darker than other glue-on french mani bases. Also, the IBDs were lots longer and thus easier for me to apply. However, Revlon wins hands-down for durability. A crack in 24 hrs just isn't acceptable, no matter how inexpensive these are. After all, they say "for professional use", which incorrectly or not, indicates some sort of promise of longer wear. These were $2.99 with my Sally's card and are available here (and in stores, of course. That's where I got mine). They come in numerous color options, and the price is right enough. However, they don't come with glue or any sort of nail file or orange stick like the Revlons. But that wasn't a problem for me as I have all the related supplies on hand. I just wish they held up longer, because while I was slightly over them, I don't like my glue-ons to decide for me when I have to do a new mani. :P
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Monday, August 10, 2009
I've been kinda down in the dumps recently because nothing seemed to be going my way lately in nail polish land. I felt like I was having to slap coats of glitter on to hide my bad polish choices and unfortunately with glue-ons, you can't just take it off and start over. If I hate my polish, I have to either try to live with it for a few days or soak off a set of newly applied nails. Either way, it sucks.
I also placed a TD order on Friday that should arrive tomorrow. Like I mentioned on the NB, I've fallen in love with blue polishes. I can't get enough of them.
Thursday, August 6, 2009
1. I got my lastest eBay purchase today. It's yet another red, but I'm so happy I got it. It's OPI Mat-Adore Red from OPI's 2001 Fall World Collection (you know, the one with the dreaded OPI and Apple Pie). My camera battery needs to be charged, or I'd take a picture of the swatch I did. I think it's pretty daggum perfect though. It's almost the same tone as You Make Me Vroom (see below), but it has more blue in it. I will do a post with it as soon as my battery is charged, but for now, check out pics on NailGal. I thought it was going to be on the warmer side, but it's got so much blue in it. I have a feeling it's going to work well with my skin-tone. Most blue-based reds do.
2. Day 3 and the Revlon nails are still going strong. As my natural nails are damaged underneath and you can somewhat see said damage through these nails, I'm not in love with them (though I plan to save judgement for when I've tried a couple more boxes), but I do like the glue a lot. There is absolutely no lifting, and usually, I have at least one or two nails that lift with just a tad bit of pressure. But I don't want to get ahead of myself. I will have a full review on these soon.
3. I have become OBSESSED with Lippmann "Happy Birthday". I saw it on Vampy Varnish last week, though she posted it in June. OMG. I NEED. I have 2 Lippmanns and in all honestly, I could take 'em or leave 'em, but HB looks amazing. I can't wait to try it over red or dark blue. Kelly at VV states that it should be out next month or October. I can't wait that long. LOL. I want to try it so bad. Here's the post and HB is the 2nd one down.
4. I'm >this< close to pulling the trigger on a TD order, and perhaps a VNS order as well. If only TD carried CC, or VNS carried Misa or allowed non-pros to order Essie and OPI. Though, someone on the NB mentioned that if you email them, they will invoice you even you are a non-pro, but I like instant gratification. I'm not good with emailing someone to buy something. If I have to do more effort than add to cart... pay, then I'm not going to do it.
Whew, I think that's it. :)
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Let me present you the latest in my case against green. This is Essie Mint Chintz. In the bottle, it's a pretty mint green shimmer, perhaps a frost, and maybe that's the problem, but I don't think so.
Seems pretty enough alone, but once you get to the big picture with my fingers and skintone, it looks like a disaster. A minty nightmare. I tried to fix it by adding glitter (of course), Sinful Hottie (I think that's the blue one, I'm too lazy to dig it out, and trust me... you don't want to try this at home), but it didn't really help. It turned into a pretty aquamarine color, but it still didn't work w/ me. Bummer, because I really liked this color in the bottle.
Here it is w/ the glitter topper.
Monday, August 3, 2009
I apologize for my lateness in posting. This was my mani over the weekend, and I just now got around to taking a picture and writing a quick post.
You Make Me Vroom is from OPIs 2005 (I think) Driven By Color Mustang collection. It's old formula/ old brush, and of course, has been d/c'd. Though, there are still plenty floating around eBay. I got mine from a less than 100% feedback seller (think 92% :S) for a $1.99+shipping. Cheap NP is worth the risk. LOL. I'm not sure if you are like me, and I know the trend in NP is now to be into greens, yellows, and blues, but I am still searching for the perfect red creme. I say that OPI's V&C is pretty damn close, but I've always wanted something a little lighter, though still with the same intensity of color, and a little more on the cool side. Like a cherry red, but with no pink. I think this color fits the bill. It's perfect. Well, almost perfect. I kind of wish it had the new PW brush, that I've become a total slave to, and I kind of wish it had OPI's new formula. I know old formula is coveted right now, and I have no problem with chemicals, but I never have as good an application with old formula that I have with a new formula polish. But in any regard, the color is perfect. Maybe there are dupes in OPI's core line, perhaps Chick Flick Cherry (?), but I don't have any.
The konad design was done using Konad Special Polish in white and plate m56. I normally don't use the konad polish, but I have a bottle of white from my starter kit, and from what I understand, white and black konad polishes are kind of a must, as other brands don't work as well in those colors in particular.
I am doing a new mani tonight, after my kidlets are asleep. Thinking of Essie Mint Chintz and something else, but who knows. I may change my mind. I always do.