Monday, November 30, 2009

Essie, Jelly Apple

So, um, remember when I said I like Essie? This is, primarily, why: it's not Lucia Lilac, and it's not even MCA. It's Jelly Apple--a pretty jelly true red with an application that's on par with the RBLs that I own: the gold-standard of application.

Don't believe me? Take a look below. Note: I did not do ANY CLEANUP.

I'm a pretty good nail polish applier, but I'm not that good. Jelly Apple makes me that good. This is indoors, direct sunlight and an unaltered photo. It's a tad more true red than the tomato red that the photo suggests--I'm not that warm-toned, either.

It's a pretty, classy, true red jelly that makes me feel classy, sassy, and just a little mischievous. It's a great color, and a great pedi color also. I seem to pick this one out every time I decide to see my parents, but they love the color and it seems to make them happy. :) Definitely a holiday polish to consider--I like to think I'm ushering in the christmas season with red, red, red!

(I have two reds. D:)

Sunday, November 29, 2009

NOTD: Thanksgiving

My camera died this Thanksgiving holiday, so I'm afraid I could only give you quick and derty swatches of my thanksgiving mani:

It's a moon mani with one coat of Missha BR102 and two coats of OPI We'll Always Have Paris, and then dotted with a needle. :D (I noticed that WAHP looks brown against the bronze.) I know I'm a little late to the uptake, and the mani itself is two days old in that pic, but I hope you all had a wonderful thanksgiving!

Monday, November 23, 2009

NOTD: Gran's Vintage Wallpaper

Two coats of Butter London's Billy No Mates, and a gold lace That's It? Rub-on from EZ Nails.

I'd been experimenting with the rub-on when it failed (twice) and I was too lazy to try again. I just rubbed on the rest of it haphazardly to the rest of my nails, but I rather like the effect. Like aged wallpaper, hence the name: a whole lot of the design has been scratched or just aged away, leaving only the base color. It reminds me also of upholstery.

It's a BS of a project, I know, but I really do like it! I promise to be a little more careful next time I try something like this; I swear it won't be this all the time. :) I do want full-on lacey nails at some point, y'know. Without mishaps.

(Also, I think this NOTD is making me like Billy No Mates. Uh oh.)

Saturday, November 21, 2009


Gildedangel's blog, Naive Nails, is having a giveaway for a bottle of Essie's new limited-edition MCA and two Mint/ Candy Apple hand lotion tubs! Check it out!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Sally Hansen, Opulent Cloud

So. My Opulent Cloud story:

I'd gotten wind of all the hype surrounding this really difficult-to-find polish. I saw the swatches. I thought 'meh'. It didn't seem to be one of those things that actually worked on me, so I forgot about it. By 'forgot about it' I mean 'stared at the swatches every time the name came up to see if it looked awesome'.

Anyway, about two weeks ago I was going through the local CVS when I found a full display of the limited HD series. And two Opulent Clouds. I picked one up. I nearly danced with joy. I took a walk around the entire store to calm myself, paid for it, and walked out.

I understand that this reaction is very extreme for a polish I didn't like. But when I studied it in the sun, I realized that it was absolutely lovely in the bottle. I could try it, once. If I didn't like it, I could always swap it to an unfortunate Opulent Cloud lover for something quite nice indeed. I took it home.

Then it sat on my bookshelf until... er, now, after I've tried it on for the first time.

Guys? This polish LOVES my skin.

As usual, the last, far-off pic describes my love affair with Opulent Cloud better than the close-ups could. Quite enamored of the angle pics, though.

This is two easy peasy coats. Applied like whoa (brush is funny-looking, but okay) and dried like whoa and looks like THAT. Shines a lot more subtly than the pictures would have you believe, and for sure it's a warm gold flash. On me, it looks gunmetally and nowhere near its grey-purple base. (IRL.) I look like scifi. I love it. It rather loves me, too.

Well, okay. I need to get to the post office and the supermarket before the sun sets completely, and before I decide to trek to the gym, and I kind of want to roll around with a mocha before hitting the treadmill.

Ah, Fridays. How I love thee.

(I kind of wish I picked up the other bottle instead of letting some other intrepid nail junkie take it. I'll be so sad when this is all gone.)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

NOTD: Stars

My Wagon Trail has been holding up much better than I thought it would, and I'd received a package today that I'd ordered from EZ Nails. I ordered a tooon of rubons and a rhinestone carousel and such, and I'd like to squee and show you! Eventually.

Anyway I wanted to freshen it up a bit with a lil somethin' somethin, so I took the gold stars one and pressed it against my nail, add topcoat, and voila. Interesting ring fingers.

I love it. It looks like halloween, or classy and sparkly giftwrap for new year's. I can't wait to try this over a dark blue, or something. :D

All right. Thanks for visiting! It is now time for lunch. >]

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

China Glaze, Wagon Trail

Outdoors, shade.
Outdoors, sun.
Outdoors, sun.
Outdoors, sun.
Far Off.

So, Merry Midnight doesn't last on me: it chipped off my right index finger. I wonder if it's because I was wearing six coats of nail polish at the time, though, so don't take my word on how long-lasting it is just yet. Thick polishes come off faster. It was a relief, anyway; the coats were so heavy that my nails hurt as I removed the two. Gah. ):

I'd been dying to try Wagon Trail for a while now, so I did: it's lovely. I can't say it's my favorite polish, because it isn't--I don't think my skin tone is right for it. It makes me look sallow, as it brings out the yellow overtones on my skin. But god, it's incredible. Looks like black in low lighting---in fact, looking at it right now I could swear it's black, but it just lights up in the sun. I just love a polish with a couple secrets. (I can't say the same for almost-black cremes, though. Boo.) The effect is not unlike finding a treasure under the dirt, so to speak. It looks like a gold that's been so sullied it only brightens under strong light.

I'm afraid that my pictures do not do this polish justice at all: it's nowhere near that dark when the sun hits it. It attains a glowy, lit-from-within look when under direct sunlight, and glistens interestingly in shade and partial light. I'll try to take better pictures tomorrow, but the fall quarter is beginning to wrap up and I'm in the middle of tying together all of my final projects, which is stressful for me. (Not to mention that my roommates know about my polish obsession, but not how far it goes: you try taking sunlit pictures in secret and see if you could cover up the fact that you were taking a picture of your manicure.)

This is two coats, and absolutely perfect. It's my personal opinion that Wagon Trail is actually a black base with a ridiculous amount of olive green/gold glitter, but most people seem to think it's a dark olive base with gold glitter. I dunno.

On another note, I know that the far-off pictures changed! I can't take the photos under artificial light anymore: my lamp has finally run its course. The bulb is exclusive and I have to order it online (BOO, lack of instant lighting, BOO), so as you can imagine I've been unable to do much at my own desk after the sun sets... which is about four thirty nowadays. D: Hopefully, things will change after next week, when I get to visit the source and demand a replacement personally. I can hardly wait to get my lamp back.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

OPI, Merry Midnight

Merry Midnight, indoors
Merry Midnight, shade.
Merry Midnight, direct sunlight.
Further off.

Holy smoke.

This is yet another polish that's astoundingly difficult to capture--not, necessarily, for what it physically looks like, but because its depth and its sparkle just doesn't translate well onto photo. It's lovely. It is the classy, colorful, clean sister of Hot-Mess 212: they're similar in that they both have the same sort of flakie and two kinds of glitter. But 212 drinks and parties all night and has no memory of the occasion and the worst hangover ever. Merry Midnight cracks open a bottle of champagne and flirts under the mistletoe during holiday parties, has fun, and never loses too much control.

I love both of them, in truth--they're so unique (except similar to each other)! They're so pretty! They have so much depth and sparkle! They wear like effing iron (I hope, at least, for MM's sake). What's not to love?

That's what I thought. I like MM's jelly consistency, the surprising blue sparkle, the flakies that give it an opalescent look (it only cemented (hah) my idea that 212 looked like asphalt, but it works in a totally opposite way with MM). I love how perfectly it put itself on. I just love it. That is all.

P.S. Did I mention the flakes are duochrome? They're duochrome. Oh, and this was three coats over Princesses Rule! The index finger is just MM, and it's still three coats--the polish applies sheer. A base is probably a good idea, but I imagine you'd probably want at least two coats of MM then, anyway, and so it really doesn't make much of a difference. :)

Friday, November 13, 2009

OPI, Princesses Rule!

Outdoors, shade.
Outdoors, direct sunlight.

Outdoors, direct sunlight.

This is number two out of the Pink minis set I received from Judy. It's a sheer pink with silver glassfleck, and shiny as all getout. Particularly in shade or areas that aren't too bright--take a look at it. The silveriness of the polish comes out strongest in shade and indoors. This is three coats--I was trying to cover the VNL, but I don't think it's possible without sacrificing the pink of the base. I don't really mind it, as is: Princesses Rule! is so shiny that you can hardly tell there's VNL in life.

Haha, can you guys see the ugly stained yellow of my nails? Shame. Sigh. (Admittedly, going to work with naked nails ONCE would probably result in both ridiculously broken nails -and- white nails: bleach works every time) On another note, it reminds me of the Dodoclub that was the first NOTD on this blog--pinker, and far easier to apply than the old thing, too. That's comforting; if I really wanted a glassfleck I could just buy Princesses Rule instead of pining for the older, asian, discontinued bottle.

I like it a lot. I'm not entirely sure why: it's not exactly unique, or original. It's not flattering on my hands, either, not like Dodoclub (guess I have to look for something else, then): it's so pale and so shiny that I look ridiculously dark and dull-skinned. But I like it. I like staring at it, and it's simple and kind of entrancing. I imagine that this is also a great layering polish--can't wait to try it over black, and a couple of pastels just to see what happens. :)

I'm in the middle of considering something--well, not new, per se, but... different--from what I'm doing with Lemming Monster right now. It's a weird time to think of these things, so I'll let you know once... hmm, I finish trying eight polishes!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Diamond Cosmetics, Chainmail Charm

Chainmail Charm was my latest lemming out of the charcoal/black holos since 1) MPJ holo is ridiculously difficult to find and keep, and 2) Diamond Cosmetics is cheaper than Color Club. Admittedly, not by much, but still: cheaper.

I am so impressed with this quality, the application, the colors of this brand. I doubt that Chainmail charm will remain my only diamond for long!

Anyway, I discovered that Holo is a ridiculous thing to try to capture. For example:
Here is Chainmail Charm in the shade. All my sun pictures came out ridiculous and blinding, and I figured there was no point trying to post them--still, only the faintest glimmer of its real oilslick holo goodness. So then I used flash.

This is two coats of Chainmail Charm, and omg holo goodness. Do you see that, how the rainbow seems to make a chevron figure across the nails? It's really something. Reminds me of fishscales, or.. well, chainmail. (It's aptly named! I love aptly named polish!)

And to be honest I have to admit that I like how elusive the holo is. I like how I went to a staff meeting for copyeditors in what people thought was a warm grey polish speckled with white, or silver, only to turn into this bevy of color in the sun. It glimmers just like this under my lamp, too (or it would, if my lamp wasn't dead) so I still have a distraction when I'm doing homework, among other things! Yaaay!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Nicole by OPI Shimmy Shimmer

I banged my hand against something mysterious this morning and--thankfully, didn't break a nail but chipped three of my fingers badly. And I mean badly. As it was, I went to class and took time between classes (i.e., now) to repaint. See, I don't know if I told you this, but my nails break like insanity: they are very weak and fragile. If they are not breaking, they are peeling--polish acts as an adhesive to keep my nails together (take that, 'don't wear too much nail polish your dead fingernails need to breathe' people).

Anyway. This is Shimmy Shimmer. Do you SEE the bottom of that bottle, people? The purple with the gold/green flash? The really strong gold green flash?!

That's why I'm disappointed with this nail polish. Indoors, artificial light, etc. Look at the bottle! The bottle! There's blue in there, apparently!

*commences tearing out hair* Pink! Red!
Okay. Before we begin on the nail pictures, please ignore all the little splotchy messes I made. I don't have time for cleanup right now, and this is how I will go out in public *hide*. Be kind!

These are two coats.

I have to admit I'm somewhat thankful that all shiny didn't disappear to become that poopy diaper color that is the base of this polish. Think puddles in asphalt after they've rained for too long--not in the nostalgic child way, but in the 'oh god I have to clean that sewage up off my kid's dress' way. Instead it becomes mostly a blackened purple in normal light with the faintest glimmer of violet .

What about the gold? you ask.

What gold? I say.

When you take your nails out to sunlight, it really shines. It's a lovely shade of violet with all that lit-from-within depth that was totally missing when not under the sun.

Screw that, you say. What about the gold?

What gold? I say.

There's no gold. It is just a lie that Nicole by OPI put into their polish bottle just to make you hope for something awesome. There's a consolation, though: it does turn a lovely shiny coffee color sometimes in certain angles. Sometimes. But that's all.

At least it's glossy, and super easy to apply, and fast-drying, I suppose. This ten-hand manicure took fifteen minutes, tops. Including the time it took for one hand to be dry enough to function. But it's not a polish I recommend on a cloudy, moody day... unless you feel like a black polish, of course.

Thing is, I have two bottles of these--Judy, you gave me one, and on that exact day I went to Marshall's and picked it up, entranced by the pretty duochrominess. The duochrominess that doesn't exist. Who wants to take one off my hands and see whether or not it works out for them? It's a great purple polish. I'm not disappointed.


Sunday, November 8, 2009

OPI You're a Pisa Work

Far off, artificial light.
Outdoors, shade.

I couldn't manage to get a sunlight picture since the sun didn't actually hit my balcony today, but we can all agree that this color isn't exactly mutable, right?

Okay. This mini was part of a set of three that I received from Judy. I felt the need to wear something non-glittery and non-cool colored, and this fit the bill just right. And by the way, get this:

that's a one-coater.

Shiny and goddang perfect in -one- coat. What is it about minis that people hated again? Because I found the brush easy to use, too. Hmmm. Anyway, I didn't think I'd like this one as much as I do. It's such a wonderfully irreverent color, and unapologetic, and barbie-princess-pink.

I couldn't resist and also threw on Jesse's Girl's Confetti over my ring finger. Yaaay string glitter! It looks like there are invisible people right underneath the window of my nail throwing confetti up into the bright pink air. That's three coats, but I found that two also works the effect quite well. It's slightly thick when you apply it--the texture is reminiscent of Poshe topcoat--but it's totally worth it. How awesome would this be over white polish? Like cupcakes.