Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween! Don't you just just love Halloween? I love any holiday that brings light in dark times and I love vampires and creepy lore stuff so Halloween is a double win for me!

The design for my Halloween mani had been in my mind for some weeks and I actually practised one two weeks ago. However, as more and more Halloween mani's kept appearing on the webz, I changed some nails. Some designs on Tumblr were just too darn cute to ignore!

My mani is now a combination of own ideas and copied ideas. I know, blood drips, pumpkins and black cats are not exactly original but I did come up with the ideas myself =)

Halloween manicure
Creepy stuff!

Sorry about not uploading the high res pic, I did a sloppy clean up job. You can click to enlarge, however.

You can find the tutorial for the vampire by JauntyJuli here, for the teeth by BeautyChocolat here. Yes, I realise I do these things upside-down, that's just how I prefer them =) Also, I have seen similar designs online. I am truly sorry if someone else is the original artist, but I used the above tutorials so those are my sources. I will link if you have reason to believe this was your design.

Also, I have been comparing Essence Better Than Gel top coat and Essence Gel Look top coat, and I think they are pretty much the same! Which is good news for me =D

Fun off-topic fact: we were having dinner with my Geeks family, and his sister told me how her son had told a friend that I had 100 polishes, but I threw out a blue one he liked so now I only had 99 left. My Geek laughed and said it would be best if we didn't tell the kid I have since bought new polishes ;-)

I used:
Thumb: Rimmel Blue Vogue, Essie Licorice, OPI Ridiculously Yellow
Index: Impulss 005, Essie Licorice
Middle: Essie Licorice,
Essence Stampy Polish White, l'Oréal Color Riche 401 Rouge Pin Up
Ring: Rimmel Ultraviolet, Essie Licorice, Essence Stampy Polish White
Pinky: Essie Blanc,
l'Oréal Color Riche 401 Rouge Pin Up

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Galactic Tips

Hi again!

Days are getting shorter and darker. So even though I don't consciously want to, I have been using darker colours (I am fixing this today, I have my Models Own Lemon Meringue at the ready!).

After getting Holographic Hero (aka The Polish That Broke Me) last week, I couldn't stay away from it. I HAD to try it out again and again!

Stamped star nail art
Click click click to enlarge

I really liked the texture. So even though I had learned it doesn't show holo when you use a top coat, I used Holo Hero rather than a silver polish.I was going to leave it at that but then I decided to stamp a star on top =)

I made this mani by following the steps below:
1. Use the brush of your polish to make three stripes on each nail. I do this by starting with the longest stripe. Place the brush on your nail, push it down ever so slightly to give the stripe the rounded edge. Then pull the brush up, as you would if you were adding a 'regular' coat of polish.
2. Then do the shortest stripe, and lastly the middle one. Repeat for each nail.
3. Let the polish dry. At this point it is not essential that the polish is even, as you are going to stamp over it. It is better to just use one coat and let it dry completely as to not get problems when you're stamping.
4. Stamp the silver/holo polish on. You'd best use the tip of a sponge so you can easily follow the pattern of the black polish. Allow the stamped polish too dry, which shouldn't take too long.
5. Get out your stamp set and stamp away! I'm still a novice at this whole stamping thing so I got some half stars and free handed the missing points. Hopefully, you won't have to ;-) Allow to dry.
6. Add your favourite top coat!

I was thinking about adding some glitter but decided against it in the end.

stamped star manicure
Galactic Tips aka Stamped Star Mani

For my stamping I use Essence Designer Set. These sponges are the best I have found so far, make up sponges are just too fine and tend to pick op the polish. Or maybe that's just the make up sponges in the shops I have tried. Anyway, the Essence sponges are cheap as and I'm happy with them =)
Essence stamping sponges
Picture: Essence EU

I used: Essie Licorice, GOSH Holographic Hero, Essence black stamping polish, Essence Gel Look topcoat

Friday, 26 October 2012

Bring Back Summer

Okay, I suppose this doesn't really count as a mani. I didn't even finish it. The reason for this? I despise the yellow polish.

It is Models Own Lemon Meringue. It makes my toes curl just thinking of it (and not in the good way).
I bought it around Easter and I was so happy to have finally found this soft, pale yellow. I had not owned a Models Own polish before. I came home, tried it. And the smell... I have since learned it is not 3-free but, honestly, I can not imagine all other polishes I have ever tried in my life were. And this is seriously the vilest smelling polish I have ever, ever, smelled. And I like the smell of Edding pens, glue, hairdye etc. This? This is just too much. I want to throw it out, but at the same time I think someone might not mind so I might leave it on the train or something...

I believe the Models Own Pro series are 3-free so they might smell better, but I am steering clear of Models Own =(

Also, the below is three coats. Three. *sad face*

Models Own nail polish smell
Pukey smell but fun mani...

I do still like the idea of using a summery design (ice creams) in a non-summery colour (black).

I used: Models Own Lemon Meringue, Essence Stampy Polish Black

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Simple Chic

A French manicure with a dotted twist =)

I started this mani by just dotting Catrice Dirty Berry and Rimmel Ultra Violet on two coats of Essie Allure.

Picture with flash
I decided it just wasn't quite cool enough so I added some more dots in a lighter shade of purple.

Picture without flash
Quick, easy and it looked quite fancy =)

I used: Essie Allure, Catrice Dirty Berry, Rimmel Ultra Violet, Essence Dress for a Moment

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Holographic Hero

Bad news. I broke my no-buy pledge =( I had come so far! I am actually quite ashamed, too.

But the thing is, I had to go to the drugstore for hairproduct, and managed to stay away from all the polishes. Except for one brand. A brand I always check, just to see if they have any holo polishes. And *GASP*! This time, they did! So I just couldn't take the risk and not buy it. And although I am so bummed that I didn't pull through my no-buy, I am thrilled to finally have this polish.

So, here it is. The Polish That Broke Me: 

GOSH 549 Holographic Hero

Gosh 549, Holographic Hero.


It's so mesmerizing. I keep staring at my nails. It's almost impossible to photograph, this blurry picture captured the effect best.

Before clean up, oops!
I combined it with a nameless Dutch brand (Hema) polish and I'm quite happy with the effect. Will take more/proper pics tonight and post.

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

GA Suze: Silver Lining

A new mani by Suze! It's been a while.

Silver Lining
This is a freehand striped mani. Freehand! I wouldn't even be able doing this using tape I'm afraid.

I really love how clear the silver is over that dark purple. Impressive! I'm pretty sure I have Silver Surfer myself, will have to try it again soon!

Suze used: Rimmel 610 Pompous, Gosh 541 Gasoline, Essence Nail Art Silver Surfer, Essence top coat

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Clean up

No mani, just pictures of my stashhh! We went to Ikea (<3) last weekend and bought three Ribba's.
My Geek thought that was 2 plus 1 spare and that I was joking when I said I probably needed four now, five by the end of the year. Bahaha!

Anyway, he got to putting them up straight away and I got to filling them (sorted by colour and one for 'other' ie topcoat, base coat, crackles, glitters). And get this: they are in the living room! Ha! I'm so happy <3
I don't like the much-favoured Helmers for the simple reason that I want to see my polish. I love to just look at them and pick a colour (or two, or three...). You might say 'just wait till you have enough polishes to fill a Helmer' but you'd be surprised at how many polishes these three Ribba's hold right now! Last count was 200, but I haven't counted in weeks. This is a tactical decision, ignorance is bliss ;-)

Work in progress

These two... cupboards? Racks? Were originally upright next to each other with some space in between. My polishes were on top of the right in one big heap and I am juuuust too short to see the polishes at the back.
So we turned one of them on its side and voilà, plenty of room for polish!

I was going to take this as an opportunity to throw out some polishes that I knew had gone gooey. I ended up throwing out only Rimmel Coralicious and Essence Cool and the Gang. Man, I loved them both but they were three years old by now and had gone gloopy. *sad face* I was especially hesitant to chuck Cool and the Gang as Essence have since changed their entire series. Oh well. I wanted to go out and replace Coralicious, but then I remembered I'm on a no-buy =(

Adding a filter, look at how artistic I am

You can just see my mini editions at the bottom here (OPI Spiderman, OPI Outrageous Neons, Urban Decay Summer of Love, a crackle set).

Yeah, another filter, just because! ;-)
So far I'm loving it, and even my Geek has said it's an improvement to the room =) So, it's a keeper!

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Love 2

Just a quick thumb mani (rest of my nails had bloodred tips).

I used: Essence French Tip Painter, Essence Make it Golden, l'Oréal Color Riche 401 Rouge Pin Up

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

For April

Five year old April Jones from Wales has been missing for more than a week now. As I was horrified to hear, a family friend has since been charged with her murder.

This just breaks my heart. I can't believe there is such evil in this world, even though we are confronted with it day after day.

Her parents have asked everyone to wear pink ribbons as it was/is het favourite colour. They also released pink balloons and lanterns on the night she had been missing for a week, as a symbol of hope. 

This is my mani for April. May you be found soon, little girl.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

YAY Germany!

October 3rd is the Day of German Unity. Pretty big deal! And since I have German heritage, I thought it would be acceptable to break my no-buy month in order to buy a polish from the Germany Collection! ;-)

Yay! Free topcoat!
Straight out of work I went to the store at the central station, because they are opened outside of office hours plus they have OPI. Faced with all the prettiness, I couldn't decide between German-icure by OPI and Schnapps Out of It!. I love the mini collections by OPI but I wasn't too impressed with the mini's for this Germany Collection.

So, ignoring my weeping wallet, I decided to just get both polishes. After all, 1+1=Unity ;-)

I got a great suprise at the register:  they had a promotion 'Buy 2, get a free topcoat' so YAY! Free full size OPI topcoat.


I spent much of the weekend playing with them, and I was amazed at how great they look stamped! I have never ever stamped anything near this well.

Sorry, no clean up, I was too excited to try something new ;-)

So after playing for a bit, this is what I went with for the rest of the weekend:

Proper mani
Two pures, two gradients and a drip.
German-icure is such a rich colour, it's so pretty <3. It looked pretty good after one layer but I went for two just to be sure. Here is a close up:

Oooh, shiny

Schnapps Out of It! is a great colour for work I would say, not too bold but still funky.

I used: OPI German-icure by OPI, OPI Schnapps Out of It!

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Inspired by D.I.Y Nails

Just a quick mani today.

Pink & white
This was inspired by (stolen from?) D.I.Y Nails. You can see her mani here.

Finally a use for my L'Oréal Marie Antoinette as it's just too sheer for me to wear it 'pure'. This mani looks pretty cool matte as well =) The picture is without any topcoat, Le Vernis is awesome like that =)

Also. How my hands are starting to suffer from this weather and this kitten!

I used: Essie Blanc, L'Oréal Colour Riche Le Vernis202 Marie Antoinette

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Smokey Rock Muse

Last month I bought NYC Rock Muse Smoky Topcoat (LE). These 'smoky topcoats' seem to have been around before but this was the first that caught my eye. And with my Geek being a massive Muse fan, I had to get it ;-)

The base is a sheer gold polish from Hema, a Dutch department store. I didn't expect it to be quite so sheer and with a more purple shine, so I hadn't worn this until I decided to try it with the Rock Muse topcoat. Here is the base:

Base, in sunlight

After three layers of that, I added one layer of Rock Muse:

I thought this looked AWESOME! Rock Muse has been called a dupe for OPI Metal 4 Life (Nicki Minaj) but I wouldn't know. I am sure I will wear this combo again, especially seeing as I have this Hema polish I have no other use for =)

I used: Hema (no name), NYC Rock Muse topcoat

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Rainy Sunrise

First, let me apologize for the quality of todays picture. It turned out darker than expected and I didn't check it before removing the polish *facepalm*.

Inspired by a rainy sunrise, let me present to you:

Rainy sunrise, click to enlarge

It's not that obvious, unfortunately, but it is a gradient of bronze, pale blue, grey and dark grey. I leave the house every morning at 7, so now that it's autumn, it's still dark out and quite often rainy. I enjoy looking out the windows and admire the early morning sights =)

This particular sight was one morning, and I saw a bird perched on a fence on top of a building. The silhouette was actually not this dark, but I decided to give the black silhouette thing another try after I loved the Sunset in Gizeh mani so much!

I used: Essie Blanc, Essence pigments Smell the Caramel (more about these pigments soon!), Rimmel Grey Matter, Essie Licorice