Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

irish_marble

I finally attempted my first water marble!  I’ve watched so many youtube videos on water marbling that I thought I might ace the technique on my first try.  Well, that was a good theory.  I did have some issues… mostly because of water temperature I think.  I used filtered water as everyone suggests, but my water may have been too cold because the polish didn’t spread out over the surface well.  Also, I found that not all polishes behave the same way in water.  I had to eliminate my white wet n wild polish because it was being a huge P.I.T.A. !  After 4 or 5 tries with different temps and polishes-  this is what I came up with.  Not too bad for a first timer I suppose.  I love all the Irish colors!  Oh, and if anyone has any marbling tips- please leave me a comment!

Hope everyone has a fantastic St. Patrick’s Day!  I will be cooking a turkey.  It’s not traditional at all, but I felt the need to cook this weekend and that’s what I had in the freezer !  My boyfriend is busy painting so I will occupy myself in the kitchen.  No St. Patty’s pub crawl for this girl!

irish_colored_polishes

Sally Hansen Golden-I

Sally Hansen Emerald City

China Glaze Westside Warrior

AVON Orange Creamsicle

what I’m wearing today- maraschino tips

and_a_cherry_on_top

The red mani that I’m wearing today kind of went in a different direction than I planned.. but it came out cool!  Originally I wanted a french manicure with red tips.  So I free-hand painted some red french tips on my nails using a Sephora by OPI polish called And a Cherry on Top.  Sephora describes it as an opaque vivid maraschino.  I have a mini-sized bottle of this polish and the small brush is perfect for hand-painting french manis.  Well, it came out more dramatic than I expected!  I red_frenchloved my blood-red tips!  They were shiny red and hot hot hot!  I would’ve taken pics but it was late at night and dark out.

Keeping in mind that I had to attend a family event today – I felt the need to soften the look a bit.  I went ahead and topped it off with a coat of Sally Hansen Maximum Growth Nourishing Nail Color  – the sheer nude that came with my SH French Manicure Kit.  Unfortunately the red didn’t shine through well after applying the nude topcoat. So I put a row of tiny dots using more of my And a Cherry on Top.  Then I slightly mixed both the cherry and the nude polishes together and then dabbed it on my tips with a q-tip to give a blotchy effect.  Mixing the two colors really transformed the maraschino to a hot pink.  It came out kinda cool…a different play on the regular old french manicure!

Sometime soon I’ll have to try out my And a Cherry on Top again- it’s a luscious red!!  I don’t have a favorite red polish yet, so maybe this could be the one?  Do you have a favorite red ?

Houses of Parliament Magnetic Effect

nails-inc-magnetic-polish

Do you love magnetic polish as much as me? Here’s a swatch of nails inc. magnetic polish called Houses of Parliament.  The polish initially goes on a medium greyish purple and once the magnet hits it changes to dark purple.  It’s houses-of-parliamentkinda vampy and edgy and looks just as great in the shade as it does in bright lighting.  The magnet that’s built into the top was so strong that it actually pulled some of the polish up off of my nail- I quickly learned not to hold it too close!  I’ve reviewed another polish from this collection called The Strand which was a really pretty blue, but Houses of Parliament seems to have a different formula…

This one takes forever to dry.  Maybe it’s because my 2nd coat was thick, but the surface of my nails still felt tacky after an hour.  The polish also dried weird and had the tendency to shrink back or even rub off if you touched it.  I got some crazy tip wear right from the get-go!  And within 24 hrs I had A LOT of tip wear.  Oh well, this won’t prevent me from wearing Houses of Parliament again.  Magnetic polishes are fun for when you want an awesome-looking manicure without having to fuss.  To top it off- you’re pretty much guaranteed to get some compliments and/or questions about your magnetic nails!  🙂  And don’t we all love when people look at our nails?

a mani makeover just for me!

studded_mani

Today I’m wearing one of my new spring polishes from the Zoya Lovely Collection called Jacqueline.  I just had to have this polish since it’s my namesake.  Jacqueline- that’s me!!

jacquelineI applied my 3 coats (whenever products say they only needs 2 coats,  I always need 3 for some reason) and wore it for 24hrs.  The light yellow/nude shade is subtly beautiful… but it was missing something.  It just wasn’t quite Jacqueline-esque enough for me! So while watching the season finale of The Bachelor (woot!)  I fancied up my manicure and gave it a crafty touch.

On top of Jacqueline I painted on some chevron tips with Orly Faint of Heart.  This grey is one of my absolute faves- it looks like smooth wet concrete with the faintest dark specks hidden inside.  For a creme grey it’s very unique and the formula is superb.  Also, there’s something about yellow and grey together- I just love that combo!  I added some metal studs from Claire’s Boutique as a final embellishment to top it off.  Et voilà…..

This studded mani is sooo Jacqueline!  I hope you like it too!

jacqueline_studs

Cutesy Easter Nails

easter-nails

I’m wearing a silly little Easter mani today!  I decorated my nails like easter eggs and then painted a little newborn chick on my accent nail.  I used a matte topcoat too since I’ve been in love with that stuff lately!  Now is it just me… or does my chickee look like he’s scared as he stares at the brown egg I’m holding?  Poor little dude- maybe all the nail polish fumes got to him. 😦
Here’s the list of products I used…

white base wet n wild wild shine in French White Crème

pink accents  Dance Baby by China Glaze

blue accents  Natural Environ-mint by Sephora by OPI

yellow accents  Yellow Kitty by Sally Hansen

chickadee Folk Art acrylic paint

Four Leaf Clover Tutorial from Zoya

I can’t believe it’s almost St Patty’s Day!  This year is just flying by!  I was browsing the web for some cool shamrock nail art and came across a great little tutorial on the Zoya Blogspot blog.  I decided to use their technique but I couldn’t do just one four leaf clover – so I did a whole bunch for extra fun.

four_leaf_clover

I used one of my new AVON polishes called Absinthe as my base color.  AVON must be a tad obsessed with absinthe because they also carry a Christian Lacroix perfume called Absinthe.  I wear the perfume from time to time and it smells really unique- sorta like an intoxicating tree smell, if that makes any sense.  Not sure why I love the idea of absinthe so much, probably because of one of my favorite movies- Moulin Rouge.  It has a really trippy scene where Ewan McGregor (LOVE) gets all weirded out on the stuff and hallucinates about fairies LOL.  Someday I should put some Konad fairy stamps on top of my absinthe polish just for you, Ewan !

Getting back to my St Patty’s nails…. for my four leaf clovers I used a small bottle from AVON called Nail Art Enamel in Styled Green.  This is how they market the product- “Create custom and detailed nail art with specially designed precision brush”.  YEAH RIGHT!  This product was so disappointing.  The brush was absolutely horrible.  All the bristles were different lengths and some funky ones stuck straight out to the side.  There’s no way I can use this brush to make detailed nail art, so I decided to at least make use of the green AVON polish with a dotting tool.  It worked well for the four leaf clovers because it was fairly opaque.

The tutorial I used for my four-leaf clovers can be found at the Zoya blog.  Just click Zoya’s image below to check it out!

ZP_POLISH_IVANKA 1

Orly Ridge Filler Review

We all know that base coats are essential to a good manicure.  But there’s so many kinds out there.  I only started using Orly Ridge Filler a few months ago, but it has quickly moved up the list to one of my most-used nail products!  I love Orly brand Ridge Filler for a bunch of reasons as shown in my pic…

orly_ridge_filler_review

BENEFITS OF ORLY RIDGE FILLER:

♥ As a base coat it does a great job of smoothing out your mani.  It builds up a nice even layer that makes your polish look so smooth and professional.  It’s perfect for disguising ridges or uneven nail surfaces.  (My mom swears by this stuff and won’t let me paint her nails without a coat of Orly Ridge Filler underneath!)

♥ The white tint makes for an awesome base for colored nail polish.  It helps build up opaqueness and you may need less coats of color than normal!  This works especially well with neons or sheer colors.

It acts as a good primer to prevent staining. I reach for my Ridge Filler any time I paint my nails navy blue or any other dark color that would typically stain.

It even looks good on its own!  If you want a nice neutral nail but are pressed for time or feeling lazy…. try one or two coats of Orly Ridge Filler by itself (just don’t go too thin on the coats or it may look a little streaky).

 It dries rather quickly.

My only complaint is that the formula is kinda runny so you’ll need to paint it on carefully so you don’t flood your cuticles.  Still, I find myself reaching for this base coat a lot.  Just another reason for me to love Orly!