Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Julep: Melanie & August Maven Box

Hello everyone! Today has been such a long day trying to earn the last of the month's needed SwagBucks.... even so I've just kind of been sitting here so I have no idea why I'm so sleepy! Unless it's the heat....

Anyway, yesterday was a pretty exciting day. Not the least of which was this fabulous bit of nail mail! A bit of mail, I might add, that Aaron snatched from the mailbox and hid in the house so I had to go looking for it. :p Was a fun little game and he didn't make it too hard. lol



Apparently August is Julep's birthday. That explains the pink box. The little box contained my add-on. To celebrate their birthday I got a free tote!



Maybe I'll use that to hold my nail art supplies so they're not scattered all over my computer area. Ready to see my new pretty, pretty polishes? I know you are!



From left to right: Piper, Melanie, Sienna and Harley. Melanie felt lucky, and it seems like it's been a while since I've worn blue, so Melanie it is.



I love this color!



Look at that sparkle! This is one of my new favorite blues. The formula, however, left quite a bit to be desired. If I may illustrate:



I will admit, that is maybe half my fault. I was just so frustrated right off the bat. These are supposed to be chrome/metallic polishes and after the first coat it was so sheer! So I was a bit more heavy handed with the second coat than I probably should have been. But still, it didn't dry like a chrome/metallic either. :/ So I topcoated and sprayed the crap out of them twice just so I could go to bed. As you can see my left hand fared far better than the right. Despite these issues, some of them personal, it is still a really lovely color.

I have no idea which one I'm going to try next. Maybe Piper. Maybe not. I really wish I had my Misas because I'm aching for a color with a nice, risque name. Ah well. Still have my stash page to update and SBs to earn so I've got some time to decide. If I don't convince myself a nap is in order. ;) Hope everyone's having a great week.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Barry M: Magnetic Dark Silver

Wow. So... I had a really good reason for why I decided not to do Camelot or Minty or any of the new polishes I picked up. I just have no idea what it could have been anymore. Regardless, I was browsing my list and I have 4 (3 now) magnetic polishes I haven't swatched yet! I'm not going to do them all in a row like the glitters (omg I have more of those now.....), but I figure I could try to do a magnetic Monday 'til they're all done? If I remember. ;) Always with the good intentions. All of that aside I now have for you Barry M's Magnetic Dark Silver.



There it is by itself. A lovely, smooth and super quick drying dark silver color. Huzzah! Interestingly, after taking the magnet to this polish the background goes almost full black and the design is a lighter silver.



I alternated the star on the China Glaze magnet with the Barry M "star" magnet which I used on the Nabi Green here. I think I may have not used quite a thick enough second layer. I did get a bit of design, but not quite as contrasty as I had hoped.



I have the hardest time getting these images centered! Which is a shame because if I could have gotten them more centered, then what I did next would have looked tons better.



I whipped out one of my new dotting tools and did a dot in the center of the stars first with Sally Hansen Gunmetal and then a smaller one in the center of those with essence Icy Princess.



I was going to topcoat to kind of bring the whole thing together, but.... I didn't. lol Oh, I didn't topcoat the magnetic either, that's it's natural finish.

120SB goal for today. Just this one and tomorrow 'til my bonus points! And I only need 32 to reach today's goal. *fingers crossed* I'm over 70% to my big goal! :D So exciting. Hope everyone's week is off to a great start.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

A England: King Arthur +Python Mani +Art

"OMG Lizzy where were you yesterday we were so worried about you!" LOL Calm down, it's ok. Started off my day playing Skyrim so I didn't start my nails until late. Then Brak's in town (YAY!!) and needed help moving a fridge, then I got back and was roped into chat. So no blog, but plenty of fun and friends for me. :) This is gonna be a bit long, so I hope you're ready for a ride!

A England's King Arthur is a gorgeous steel grey. Two coats and lightening fast dry time!



Seriously, I painted my nails maybe five minutes before we left for Brak's and took these pics after I got home. So there is a bit of tip wear, but no wetness damage!



The color there is a little off, but you can see the sparkles. :) It is similar to Sally Hansen Gunmetal, but with a much smoother formula and a bit less blue.

Once I had a moment to sit down it was time to back-track and bring forth the only reason I bought my first OPI at full price. Monty Python and the Holy Grail. We start, of course, with King Arthur. After a run-in with the Knights Who Say Ni! he finds himself tasked with cutting down the mightiest tree in the forest with a herring!



Get it? Now King Arthur has A Herring Problem! Get it?! Anyway, this ruffian turned out quite a bit better than my first attempt. But wait! There's more!! Remember I wanted to try a double ruffian?



Eh? Eh? Get it? Cuz King Arthur's herring problem stands between him and the Holy Grail? XD Ok, so this may have made a bit more sense if King Arthur and Holy Grail were reversed, but it's still a work in progress. I've also got to find a way to work in Camelot and The Black Knight. hehehehe

Changing directions for a bit. Guess what came in the mail yesterday!



My dotting tools!! Yes, all 5 for 99cents on eBay. So of course I had to pull up Abbie's wicked awesome dotting tool tutorial and see if I could pull off a couple of her ideas.



Not too shabby. I have flowers on the left, a mustache and monocle which could have been better and leopard spots which really are easier than you think! Well, easier than I thought, at least. Seriously awesome! :D

That was going to be the end of this post, but since I didn't get it up before we left I do have two more things. First, we went by Goodwill for... some reason I'm not entirely sure of. They had four little buckets full of KleanColor!!



From left to right I got: Peaceful Heart, a green base with small green glitter and blue heart glitters; Twinkly Love, clear base packed with pink & silver & blue heart glitters; and Silver Star, a clear base with silver/holo small glitters and star glitters. :D I almost got another one that had little moon-shaped glitters, but they were so sparse I knew I'd never be able to dig them out. Then once I did... no more moons. :( So I skipped that one.

Then we went to HEB. Funny story. I told him about the Wet n Wild magnetics so we went over to the WnW area to see if they were there. They were not. One of the fast dry polishes caught his attention and I explained to him they were all named after TV shows. So we're going down the line "Blue Wants to be a Millionaire, Sagreena, The Gold & The Beautiful, FuchsiaRama....." *blinks* FuchsiaRama!?!?



OMG I love Futurama!! Which, of course, he knows so he grabbed the bottle from me and dropped it in the basket. :) He was in a particularly good mood since I suggested we check out O'Mart and he got a really good deal on a set of katanas there, but he'd have done that anyway. Such an enabler. *hearts* So now I have a ton to update on my stash page and I still have to figure out which polish to swatch next. Good news, though! My Maven box has been shipped so that should be in any day now and I'm 70% to my manic haul cashout goal. *squee* Oh, speaking of that. If you haven't seen swatches of the China Glaze Bohemian collection yet The PolishAholic has them here. After looking over them I decided the only one I really want/need is Swanky Silk, so that'll save me quite a bit of money. It's on my list! Ok, I think that was it. Long winded much? Time to update my page then get back to making that internet monies! Hope everyone's enjoyed their weekend.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Hello Kitty: Bubble Gum & OPI: Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It

I have no idea how I'm still awake right now. Last night Aaron promised his mom we'd be over to mow today and, given the insane Texas Summer heat, we knew we would have to get out early. Last night we had to stay up for the repeat of the new Burn Notice and by that time it was late so we decided to sleep in shifts. I got midnight to 4am, he got 6:30 to 9am. :/ Still, we managed to drag ourselves out of the house and zombie our way through yet another bout of jungle mowing. He paid off Borderlands 2 and I put down another $10 on Sims: Supernatural so it was well worth it. Well, that and doing what we said we were going to do for his mother since we're all young and strapping.... sorta.

Halfway through that brutal yard battle I was sure I'd come home and pass out, but there was still the feeding of my mom and the animals to consider. So we washed off the dirt and went back out. He had the brilliant idea to grab Chinese for lunch and the smell in the car motivated us enough to finish off the day's errands. Even so I wasn't sure I could manage finishing off my mani and typing up the blog, yet here I am. Because I said I would be. So without any further rambling I present to you Hello Kitty: Bubble Gum!



I absolutely adore the bottles!!



So, how was it? Let me tell you with all honesty: It was not that bad. I'm not just saying that because it's Hello Kitty and cost $10/bottle, either. I started with my basecoat franken, as usual. The first coat was a bit streaky, but whatever right? That's practically expected with almost any polish. The bristles are a bit short so for the second coat I dipped the brush twice to make sure I got smooth, even coverage. Example: dip~middle swipe~side swipe~dip~side swipe~middle swipe~done. I was pretty proud of myself. And the result, as you can see, is just as good as any polish not put out by a company specializing in cartoon cats. I thought it may have been lightly scented, but that could have been an olfactory illusion since I've been using so many chemical-smelling polishes lately. It did seem like it was taking a wee bit long to dry so I did topcoat. I only have one beef with this polish:



They are sold with this "safety wrap" around the bottle and when I took it off it took some of the silver with it. :/ On both bottles. Ah well. Better than cracked, right?

After gorging myself on lo mein and orange chicken I decided I could manage to at least paint on OPI's Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It while finishing up on SwagBucks. I love how it looks over Bubble Gum.



I have to admit, I'm totally lusting after shaped glitter. I haven't plunged into the Indie scene yet (likely I will wait until the hype dies down a bit), but I think NMBI and America the Beautiful are filling the shapey-glitter-gap nicely.



NMBI is a sheer pink (jelly) base with little pink flakes and, of course, the hearts. The hearts were an immense pain to stick to my nails and dropping them usually resulted in a blob of polish around the heart. So I topped it off with a second coat actively trying to not grab hearts. Just to try and smooth things out. The hearts really wanted to converge at my tips and that's just not cute. Fortunately it did dry pretty quickly (for a jelly). LOL

I've reached my SB goal (only four days left 'til the 300SB bonus!!), typed this up and now I will take my butt to bed. Sure I'll probably wake up at 3am, but at this point I don't think Skyrim would keep me up for even one more hour. I'll update my stash page and catch up on y'all's blogs whenever I wake up. :) Hope everyone has a safe and relaxing (or exciting, if that's your thing) weekend!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

A England: Holy Grail

Wow. Almost 8pm and I'm just now getting to this. Haven't even had time to take off Holy Grail so it'll be kind of nice to look at it while I'm describing it. ;) Gotta look on the bright side.

I got up early this morning to take my dad back to work so I got some early morning sunshine pics:





My only complain about Holy Grail is that it was a tad sheer, even after three coats. So I don't know if it would be good for stamping, but my nail art brushes should get here... eventually? Mid-day sunshine!!





*BAM!* Holy Grail is a glowy yellow-toned gold. I'm not that into gold, but I had to have this one. I plan on mostly using it for accents, but I had to show it in all it's brilliant glory. Can you see the hidden sparkles of color in the bottom close-up there? :D Pretty.

Of course, being named Holy Grail I couldn't resist blinging it up a bit. (even though I believe if there is such a thing it's far more modest than Renaissance art depicts) I started out with this left-hand image from "Nail Art" (not-Konad) plate m64:



Stamped with Sally Hansen Silver Diamond Chrome, and added a couple of rediculously big rhinestones.





LOL They didn't look that big in the package, but on the nail they look ginormous! So... it didn't turn out exactly as I pictured in my head, but it was good stamping practice trying to get the design on straight.

I totally lost my nail brush and when I went to Dollar Tree to get another one, they had these cute little buggers for kids:



I almost got the panda one, but I couldn't resist the monkey. ;) Too cute! Which kind of softens the blow that came later.... Chloe came in earlier than expected....



But....





The bottle is all cracked! It's still full, so that's good. I have no way to tell or prove if it was the heat or the fact that the seller didn't wrap it in bubble wrap (relying on the bubble-wrap lined envelope to protect it) that cracked it, so... I'm not gonna cause a fuss. I cleaned up the little bit that did leak out and whipped out my handy-dandy Krazy Glue pen to glue the cracks. So the bottle is all ugly looking now and I'm afraid to hold it too tightly, but it is still full and the polish itself is a normal consistency. I'll just probably not be buying from that seller again... Assuming Lacey finds another free $10 for me to use at some point. *teehee*

Reaching yesterday's SwagBucks goal was brutal, but I did finally manage. All by myself. It's a little disappointing (and a bit confusing, who doesn't like free money?!), but... ya know. I guess I'll be enjoying the polish all by my lonesome either way so maybe it's good that I'm having to work so hard for it. Head2ToeBeauty has the ChG Bohemian collection up already so I added those to my shopping list. That will tip me over the initial $100 from SB so I don't know yet if I'll be cashing out elsewhere and just exploding the bonanza or ticking off a few from my list. We'll see! (I'll probably cash out extra. I really like my list! LOL)

Before I go, check out this cute nail art my cousin, Alexis, did!



She's got so much more patience than I do. :D Now to sit back with some SBTV, whip out the polish remover and get to trying out Hello Kitty's Bubble Gum! I'm a bit worried because I've seen some bad reviews, but I had a much easier time with Zoya's Mod Mattes than a lot of people. So we'll see. Happy Thursday, everybody!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A England: Tristam! *hearts*

Tristam is like a dream. Actually.... I have a confession. I was so stuck in my head that Tristam was going to go on sheer that I kind of scared myself when it was so opaque going on. *yipes* LOL Seriously, though, one medium-thick coat and this could be a one-coater! I went with two just to be absolutely sure.



*grabby hands* .... oh wait, I own it! :D Just look at that lovely holo sparkle!!



And the blue-purple base is so gorgeous!! I was a bit 50/50 on getting this one because.... ok, for some reason I have it stuck in my head that all I ever get is purple polish and I don't know why. I'll pick one up and think "No, I have so many purples" and I don't even know if that's true...



It wasn't the quickest drying polish ever, so I did spray before bed just because I wanted absolutely no sheet/hair marks this time. And I did have a bit of tip-wear but a lot of that may be due to the impromptu shower Aaron dragged me into. LOL

Now... After getting Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It I had this idea. Ok, I kind of stole the idea sorta from somebody and I forget who so I'm so sorry. So someone took the heart glitters from NMBI and applied them in a line individually instead of brushing them on...



I think I went too far outlining the hearts. :/



Ah well, at least you get to see the fantabulous rainbow again! :D Oh! Guess where I went today.



Wow. They had a lot of interesting and expensive stuff in there. I didn't manage to find any clearance rack, so that's one point for Ulta; but their member/reward card will give me free stuff on my birthday! So that's a point for Sephora. I'm going to have to check the site because I didn't get a pamphlet or anything for the card. So, are the Hello Kitty polishes online exclusive?



No they are not!! They are $10 each, though, so I only got two. Minty and Bubble Gum. I didn't see the Tokidoki polishes, though, but then I had a hard enough time finding these.

Unless there's an unlinked polish on my stash page (check the link at the top!) that somebody just has to see then tomorrow I'm doing Holy Grail and after that I'll be pairing up Bubble Gum with Nothin' Mousie 'Bout It. After that I'll probably be doing King Arthur and the double (triple?) ruffian for Barker.

Ok, eight hours to make 88 more SwagBucks and so far no luck with the surveys. *eep* Wish me luck!!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Lizzy's Purple-Green Duochrome Compare

Yep, others have done it. I'm fully aware of this. But since Sandy asked to see how Gray's Anatomy stacks up against Indigo Illusion I figured I'd pop out my other two and go all out. Today I have for you a comparison between Essence Where Is The Party?, OPI Not Like The Movies, Wet n Wild Gray's Anatomy, and Nubar Indigo Illusion.



And lookit me actually keeping the bottles in the same order as my nails. ;)



First up: The Angles









I tried to catch each polish mid-shift. Semi-successfully.


Where Is The Party?

Not Like The Movies

Gray's Anatomy

Indigo Illusion


So, my verdict? I'm so glad you asked!

Where Is The Party?: The best formula. Totally opaque in two coats, the rest took three. Also, the best purple in my opinion. Smooth and bright.

Not Like The Movies: I like the added silver shimmer. Definitely adds a little something. I don't know if it was just my bottle, but the formula was a bit thin.

Gray's Anatomy: This one is so frustrating. It's kind of frosty and you'll see in the pics from some angles it's still totally sheer after three coats. The color shift is nice, but this one... I dunno, man. And even being a "Fast Dry" polish, it took the longest of the three to fully dry.

Indigo Illusion: Still loving this one. It has the best green! And the color particles offer a more interesting shift between the colors. And even though it doesn't matter much, this one looks the best, out of the four, in the bottle.



So, what do you think? Which one is your favorite?