Wednesday, July 14, 2010

First Swap!!!

Twice in one day? Boy are YOU lucky...

Here are pictures of my very first swap! I have never successfully completed a swap before. I have only ever been in preliminary talks about swapping. And in both instances, I was never able to get back in contact with the people who initiated the swap. Oh well. This swap with worked out! I present my new Tokodoki Diamante Cromatico Palette:

Tokidoki Diamante Cromatico Palette Packaging
Super cute outside packaging - clear lucite with an animated graphic on top

Tokidoki Diamante Cromatico Palette Charm
The angry little charm inside of the cube, under the palette

Tokidoki Diamante Cromatico Palette Swatches and Inside
The 4 palette colors and swatches: Diamante, light frosty neutral with chunky glitter; Rubino, a frosty taupe; Romeo, a deep burgandy frost; Nancy Rocks, a frosty medium purple.

Tokidoki Diamante Cromatico Palette Swatches Blended Out
Swatches blended out.

These shadows seem quite comparable in formula to Urban Decay Shadows. I am pretty excited to try them out. I am very curious about Romeo. The crease color possibilities are intriguing to me as I don't usually use a color like this (I'm not even sure if I have a similar color in my collection.)

When I complete an eye look with this, I will post pictures.

Thanks for the swap Thu!

I think I've Moved On Enough to Post This...

Dutch Manicure

This was my FIFA World Cup manicure. Orange to represent the Huis van Oranje and the red, white, and blue for the flag of the Netherlands. Oh, what could have been. True, both teams had never won the cup before, but why couldn't it have been the Netherlands. They are a teeny, tiny country with a little over 16.5 million people inhabiting an area only slightly larger than Maryland, so to make it as far as they did is awesome. And the game was well matched (and both goalies PHENOMINAL)...but...but...why couldn't it have been us? Third time was not the charm.

C'est la vie...or whatever the Dutch equivalent is.

Anyhow, the manicure was awesome. I used Zoya's Sienna for my orange, Sally Hansen Xtreme Nail Color in Red Carpet, Orly's White Out, and Sally Hansen HD Nail Polish in Laser.

I needed to breakaway from my tribute to the red, white and blue (first for July 4th, and then for the Netherlands) so I decided to test out my grabs from the L'oreal Passport to Paradise Collect. I did Ocean Breeze for my manicure and found myself with a HUGE FAIL:

Loreal Ocean Breeze indoor light
Indoor Lighting

Loreal Ocrean Breeze outdoor sunlight
Outdoor Sunlight

Look at the fail that is this polish. Boy, was I bummed. This was some lovely color in the bottle (and lovely swatches on other nail blogs) but a disaster on the nails. This was a heinous polish to work with - it was runny and goopey all at the same time and dried with bumps, lumps and ripples. Ugh...I took this off the very next day. I don't know about this. I was so disgruntled that I am reluctant to even try and save this with a little polish thinner. Maybe I got a rogue bad bottle. I picked up another bottle from this collection, so maybe the next one will be better (though with my past experience, I am reluctant to use the next bottle.) I have one other L'oreal polish from their regular line...a purple and the name escapes me. I swatched it on ONE nail when I first got it (for swatching purposes only) and it seemed OK and I do plan on wearing it in the future. I feel I owe it to the bottle to give it another shot. When I run across my polish thinner, I will give this bottle another go.

One last bit...I am going to cut my nails. (LOL, I love how this is "news worthy" to me. I am convince that the reason my nails look so bad is because of the salon manicure I had at the end of May. The picture I posted in my Seche Fail post is still pretty accurate of how the nails look. I have stopped using Seche Recondition (I can only take so much insult to injury) and started using Sally Hansen's Hard as Nails Hard as Wraps Powerful Acrylic Gel (does anyone else find SH names to be obnoxiously long?) to strengthen my nails because they are peeling and shredded in certain areas. Though the condition is pretty bad, the nails hold up fairly well with polish on them. But enough is enough. I am starting fresh (well, as fresh as I can...I think I would need to let more nail grow out to completely start fresh.) But maybe I will keep them short until all the damaged nail grows out. I don't know why I opted for the salon manicure - I almost never do. I guess because I was wrapped up in the "special occasionness" of graduating and thought "what the hell." I don't know why I am surprised. My toenails look that bad too without polish on them, and I get pedicures far more often than I get manicures (and then I don't even get pedicures too much. Do you realize that you can buy 3-5 bottles of polish for the cost of one salon pedicure+tip?) Ugh... I must start my quest for healthier nails. When I was using Nailtek I had very happy results. Maybe it's time to dig that stuff out again.

Until I regrow my length, here is the last shot of my long nails, wearing Essie's Lapis of Luxury - tipwear, crusty cuticles and all!

IMG_0564[1]Essie Lapis of Luxury florescent lighting

Fear not! I will still post nail pics. I will use this opportunity to test out more loud and vampy shades that some would consider obnoxious on longer nails (not me though...nope...I don't discriminate based on nail length.)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Fourth of July Manicure

I have to say, I am pretty proud of this one:


I created this manicure with Sally Hansen HD Nail Color in Laser, Orly White Out, and Sally Hansen Xtreme Nail Color in Red Carpet. I also used Sinful Color Nail Art stripers in their red and blue colors as well as a Migi Nail Art pen in white.

This manicure was very intimidating to is probably the most intricate nail art I have ever attempted. I first saw this kind of art in a video by Julieg713 on Youtube. Her nail designs always look so effortless. The nail design was very hard once it got going, but once I started on my right hand, I couldn't stop shaking!

And just to prove I DID do it on my left hand...


I hope everyone had a wonderful Fourth of July. Getting started on my next NOTD right now.

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

That's Money Honey! me some GaGa.

But anyway, here is a US currency inspired manicure I just completed. I don't know if it can hold up until the fourth, but I'll do my best to baby it.



I used Seche Recondition for a base (hey, I'm trying to finish up the bottle before I never use it again), Color Club in Wild and Willing (copper), What a Drag (silver), Seche Vite topcoat, and Migi Nail art pen for $ sign (the green from the silver collection.)

Pretty easy. The formula on these Color Club polishes was great. Really opaque in 2 coats (but I did three just to be safe) and they dried very quickly before the top coat was applied. Sometimes with glitter polishes the formula can be pretty goopy as you apply more and more layers, but I was really pleased with this application. I used my janky homemade french tip guide stickers. With this nail polish, I found that they peeled off better/cleaner when the polish was still wet (otherwise it pulled at the very end of the inside of the tip.) Very pleased with this mani. What do you think?