Embracing my new shorties… and pretty half moons.

Oopsie.

Sorry for disappearing for a little while. After I posted my Keira Knightley inspired nails I had a nail tragedy breaking THREE nails super duper short (and, all on the same hand of course) so I was really disappointed. Curse working in retail… it ruins everything. =( But nails grow… so I’m trying my best to embrace my new super nubs while they grow out… which is hopefully quickly!

 

shorties

For this manicure, the polishes I used were:

  • ACO by Ardene Bridezilla
  • Layla Soft Touch Effect Golden Touch.
  • Sinful Colors Hip to be Square.
  • Essence Gel Look Top Coat.
  • Essie Good to Go Top Coat.

First off, Hip to be Square might be one of my favorite new polishes. It’s so pretty! It looks fairly sky blue in my pictures, but honestly it’s more of a cornflower blue in person, with a barely noticeable silver shimmer. (I love it so much!) I also think it might be very close to ACO by Ardene’s Sea of Beauty, so I’m going to have to do a comparison between the two.

Can you tell how much I love a half moon manicure. I especially love them with shorties, as I feel like the blocking of colors works to give the illusion of longer nails.

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Also, I think I’ve found the perfect new top coat combination for my nail art. As you might remember, I was less than thrilled with my experiences with Essence Gel Look Top Coat the first go around, but top coating it with Essie’s Good to Go squashes the wait for it to dry. The one thing I was impressed with about Essence’s Top Coat was it’s durability and from the look of this manicure now three days later….

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Whoa! Color me impressed! This is my nail art on day three… with no major chips and just minimal tip wear on my index finger. Considering I worked all weekend, that’s a feat. Usually my nails look like this after day one.. and by day two major chips will start so even if I love a manicure I have to change it! I’ll have to test out this top coat combination a little bit more with a few more manicures, but I have a good feeling about it.

So how do you deal with big nail breaks? Any tips on helping my nails grow out without any more tragedy? I’m going to be doing a post later on my own little routine, but I was just wondering what everyone else does… unless I’m the only one who has this kind of awful luck? In which case, tell me how you avoid big breaks because obviously, I need some advice!

Inspired by Wonder Woman!

Because I have a huge love affair with all things DC superheroes, I really wanted to do another Superhero inspired manicure. I’ve only done a couple to date: A Flash manicure last summer, and my Spiderman nails. Now most people who know me would figure I would do Batman nails since he’s my all time favorite (I even have a Batman tattoo). Instead, I decided to go with my second favorite: Wonder Woman.

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The polishes I used for this manicure were:

  • ACO by Ardene Golden Luxury.
  • ACO by Ardene Strawberry Blush.
  • Revlon Spidey Sense.
  • Maybelline Sapphire Siren.
  • Revlon Superpowered.
  • Vernis Classique by Cherimoya Black
  • Essie Good to Go top coat.

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This manicure was pretty simple to do. I painted my nails all the gold color, and waited for them to dry over night. Then, I taped off the L shapes, and painted on first my creme blue and red, followed by my Revlon polishes. I peeled that off carefully, then outlined with my black and applied top coat. And tada! My nails are super powered!

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The only thing I wish was that I had little star glitters that I could have added to my blue to make it really look like her costume. Next time! These would go perfectly with my Wonder Woman costume (which I wore for Halloween a couple of years ago.) I might even have to come up with some more Superhero inspired manicures–Batman, for sure, but all my other favorites as well. I remember seeing an awesome Star Sapphire manicure on pinterest a while ago that I feel absolutely in love with.

From the forgotten stash — Icing’s Romantic/Relaxed.

Today I have another polish from my forgotten stash with you–and another “mood” polish! Like I stated in my other Claire’s mood polish, I was quite obsessed with these when they first came out, as I had never witnessed a thermal polish before so these left me in awe. Now that I have my Mood polishes back, I’m definitely going to have to go on a search to find more for my collection.

Today’s polish is Romantic/Relaxed from Icing’s Mood Swing polishes.

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Romantic/Relaxed is a pink metallic polish with is scattered through out (while cold) which transforms into a gold polish when it is hot. I’d call the darker version of this polish (which I believe is the “romantic” part) almost a blush. The color is very pretty, and subtle and the gold shimmer scattered through out is gorgeous. It also dries to almost a satin finish, but I added top coat to help the polish last longer (and cause–I top coat all my manicures.)

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Romantic/Relaxed while cold.

The magic happens, though, when you hands start to warm up. (And this is why I love this polish SO much) Suddenly your polish goes from a blushy pink to a full on pale gold shimmer. I know I’ve heard some people online in swatches of this polish say they weren’t too keen on the either color, but I think both are beautiful.

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Romantic/Relaxed — while hot (index and middle finger) and cold (ring and pinky).

I was so much more impressed with the change on these as opposed to my Claire’s Mood polishes which I didn’t see as much of a difference while swatching. Icing’s Romantic/Relaxed seems completely unaffected from it’s time spent in a box in the attic.

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Romantic/Relaxed mid-change.

Overall, I really, really love this polish. My only complaint is neither Icing nor Claire’s carries any of their Mood polishes anymore. I really wish they would bring them back because I can guarantee I would purchase every single color they released.  Thermal polish seems to be a popular trend that isn’t slowing down, and now that I’ve been playing with the few that I have I need MORE!

So what do you think of this “mood” polish?

Knock-out Nails.

I went clearance shopping at my local Shoppers and Lawton’s on pay day, and found myself some fun goodies.

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Oh goodness, I love polish shopping. I especially love finding some amazing deals. I got all of these polishes for under $20. You can’t go wrong with that! Especially when you find polishes you apparently missed on the first go around (I’m looking at you Essence Metal Glam.)

For my first NOTD from the group, I went with a combination of the Del Sol polish I picked up, and the Essence Metal Glam gold topper.

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I’ve bought a Del Sol polish before, and was less than thrilled with it. While it did change color in the sun, I wasn’t a fan of the color or application–it was way too streaky. When I found this one though–named Knock Out–I was happy to see it wasn’t a metallic polish. It’s a off white, almost nude, creme base. The polish itself is very thin, and it took me 4 coats to get it almost opaque (with still slight visible nail line) but it’s very nice on the nail.

With that, I applied a layer of Essence’s Metal Glam gold topper, named Steel-ing the Scene. Apparently I missed when this collection first appeared at my local Shoppers, because I do not remember seeing it! I’ve been coveting a Gold Leaf top coat since they first appeared on the scene, but couldn’t justify spending a small fortune on it. (I don’t think my boyfriend would appreciate me buying top coat over, you know, groceries.) Now this isn’t exactly like the other Gold Leaf Top coats that are floating around–it’s not real gold, so the flakes are much stiffer than its inspiration. However, for the $2 I scored it for, it gives me the look I was hoping for.

The best part of this NOTD comes, though, when you step into the sunshine.

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Pink!

Now the color isn’t as dark as what they show on the bottle, but it could be something to do with not enough sunshine, and my layers of top coat. Either way, I love the color changing effect. It makes me so happy. And the soft pink color goes so well with the gold top coat. It may come across as a simple manicure, but step into the sunshine, and *BAM!* it proves how awesome it is. Plus–Sunshine! Oh it is so nice to see the sun! It is finally starting to feel like spring here on the East coast, and my dress wearing self couldn’t be happier.

I don’t know what it is, but I LOVE color changing nail polish. When Claire’s first came out with their Mood nail polish line about 4 years ago, I owned every color and wore them constantly. Unfortunately, those polishes have been lost in the stash that disappeared from my parents house, and I haven’t been able to find any thermal polishes in a long while, even though I covet them madly. Thankfully, Del Sol’s polishes are a good replacement for now. =)

So what do you think of this NOTD?

Also, I must wish my Mom a Happy Mother’s Day, as she told me she was now following my blog. =)

Simple Nails: purple & gold.

Sometimes I just don’t have time to get complicated with my manicures, for whatever reason. After rocking my Spiderman nails for two days, I needed to paint something new, but I was feeling under the weather so I had to come up with something quick, but still pretty.

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The polishes I used for this manicure were:

  • ACO by Ardene in Sea of Beauty — my gorgeous base color.
  • Layla in Golden Touch (from the soft touch collection) — golden shimmer.
  • Essence Gel-look Top Coat.

Oh man, I love the combination of these two together! Sea of Beauty is just the most perfect blue ever. And Golden Touch is one of my favorite polishes to layer over other polishes. It just jazzes up a manicure, and adds a nice shimmer. Love!

Also, you can see from my ring finger, I’m still having trouble with my Essence top coat–even though I applied the quick dry drops over the top coat, it obviously didn’t dry soon enough for me not to nick my nails. It makes me sad, because the top coat has excellent lasting potential–a good two days with no chipping, which for me is awesome since I work in retail and use my hands for 8 hours a day. =(