August Nails

In August I was a bit of a slacker in the nail art department.  I ended up wearing a lot of neon polish,.  I was feeling that summer-is-coming-to-and-end crunch, and I felt like I needed to squeeze in as much obnoxiously bright polish as possible.

IMG_5262I found a little bottle of China Glaze – Celtic Sun for $2.49 at Sally Beauty Supply, so I finally added this one to my collection.  Although I have a few neon yellows, this is truly the brightest of the bunch.  This polish will definitely get you noticed, if that’s your goal.

IMG_5195I enjoyed adding some shimmery toppers to my neon polish, too.  Here is an unnamed Sally Girl light neon pink that is really similar to China Glaze – Shocking Pink topped with Valley Girl Lacquer – Profundity.  I opted for a matte top coat, too.

Valley Girl Lacquer is an indie polish shop on Etsy.  She’s got some really  cute polishes.  Check out her shop! (By the way, I don’t have any relationship with Valley Girl Lacquer; I was just given some of her polishes as a Christmas gift by my sis.)

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Here is Orly – Fireball topped with Valley Girl Lacquer – Enigma.  Fireball is a beautiful neon red with a blue shimmer in it.  Unfortunately, the blue shimmer didn’t really show up on the nail as well as it did in the bottle.  Fortunately, I had Enigma on hand, so I added my own shimmer!

IMG_5151I also had some fun with glitter in August.  Here’s a gradient I did using LA Girl Color Pop – Rebel over my natural nail.  I’ve only ever seen the LA Girl Color Pop polishes at Rite Aid, and they are pretty inexpensive.  They are often on sale for two for $4.

IMG_5159While I was wearing this glitter gradient, I was given two of the Essie Silk Watercolor polishes.  Since I was pretty much dreading removing this glitter, I opted to make it last a little longer by topping it with the Essie polishes.  The purple color is No Shrinking Violet and the teal is Pen and Inky.  So fun and shiny and squishy!

IMG_5285I did actually do one bit of legitimate nail art in August.  After all of the bright colors, I felt I needed something a little more subdued, and it had been ages since I had done some simple, classic leopard print nails.  Leopard print is really so easy and takes very little skill.  After applying my base color, I just used the brush of the metalic-y bronze-y brown polish to make my spots.  Then I used a little dotting tool to quasi outline the spots in black. (A toothpick would work just fine for this step.)  Then I filled in any extra spaces with black dots or “C” shapes.  It looks way more complicated than it actually is.

Just a little aside:  This pattern is sometimes referred to as cheetah print, but if you look at actual cheetahs, you’ll notice that they just have regular black spots.  Leopards are the ones who have this circular type pattern.

So, that’s what happened on my nails in August!  My next post is going to be non-nail stuff.  Through influenster.com, I was sent some products to review, so I’ll be covering those items next.

Oh, and just in case you were wondering… I’m not tackling the 31 Day Challenge this September. I just knew that with some of the other things in life that I have coming up this month, I wouldn’t be able to do it justice.  I love checking out what other nail art lovers are doing for #31dc2015, and I’m a little sad not to be joining in.  Maybe next year.

Thanks for reading!

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White Nails Are A Thing

Did you know that white nails are a thing?  Well, they are.  I think they started showing up on the runway about 3 summers ago, so the time is about right for them to make their way here to Smalltown, USA.

White polish looks great with tan summer skin and it’s also makes a perfect blank canvas for all kinds of nail art.  It’s also can help your sheer neon polishes look extra bright.  White polish can be tricky, though.  Light polishes can sometimes be sheer, and light colors seem less forgiving than darker ones when it’s not quite perfect on the nail.  That’s why it’s important for every nail polish fan to own a good white polish.

I decided to do a little comparison between 6 different brands of nail polish, most of which have a pretty low price point.  Here are the polishes I tested:

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From left to right:

Wet n Wild – French White Creme, $1.00

Broadway Nails -Snow White, $1.00

NYC – French White Tip $1.00

Sinful Colors – Snow Me White, $2.00

Sally Hansen – White On, $2.50 – $3.00

Essie – Blanc, $7.00 – $9.00

For years I used the Wet n Wild white because well, it was cheap and easy to find in just about any store.  I felt like the formula was okay, but not great.  Then one day I found Essie Blanc on a good sale!  I really thought it was going to be this amazingly wonderful stuff because it was regularly 8 times more expensive than my normal Wet n Wild.  Sadly, that was not the case, but it did motivate me to go on a hunt to find a really good white polish.

Okay, less rambling and onto the results.  For each of these polishes, my first finger has 1 coat, my middle finger has 2 coats, and my ring finger has 3 coats.  Here we go:

Wet n Wild:  With 2 coats, you can see that it’s still a little shear, but with 3 coats it’s pretty much opaque.

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Broadway Nails: Pretty similar to Wet n Wild, but maybe a bit more sheer.

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NYC:  I think with two careful coats, this would be opaque.  You can see on my middle finger near the cuticle that I had a little trouble with the polish pulling up and leaving a bald spot.  Generally, that’s caused by going over the polish with the brush too many times, which causes the polish that is partially dry to pull up from the nail.  I think if you are able to apply a coat of polish in 3 strokes, this polish will look good with only 2 coats.

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Sinful Colors:  This polish looked great in 2 coats!  I did a third coat on my ring finger for consistency’s sake, but it really didn’t need it.

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Sally Hansen:  This one is my favorite!  It was perfect in 2 coats, and a third coat actually made it a little too thick.  Really, this is a smooth, perfect white polish.

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Essie Blanc:  This one really preforms about the same as the Broadway Nails polish.  It’s really not that great and a rip-off for the price.   And do you see the teeth marks on the cap?  Yeah, I had a little trouble getting it opened this one time.  Anyway, I disliked this polish enough that I used it to do a little Frankenpolishing.

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So, in the end I really feel like the Sally Hansen polish is the bet polish of this lot, and at $3 or less, it won’t break the bank.  If you can’t find the Sally Hansen or you want to save a buck, I don’t think you’ll be disappointing with the Sinful Colors polish.  The other 4 polishes are just okay.  They will work in a pinch, but they don’t really rock my world.

Have you tried any of these polishes?  What’s your favorite? Have you tried any whites that aren’t on my list?

 

In Pursuit of the Perfect Green

Lately, I’ve been into light green nail polish.   More than once, I’ve purchased what I thought would be a perfect light green and it either turned out to be too blue or too dark or just not quite what I thought it would be.  Meanwhile, I have this half-a-bottle of Essie in the color Blanc, that I really wasn’t loving anymore:

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Truth be told, I never really loved it in the first place.  The formula was never as opaque as I felt it should be for an $8 white polish.  (There are much better whites out there for much cheaper.)  Plus, it was starting to get a little old an gunky.

The first thing I did was restore the polish out with this awesome product:

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This stuff is great!  It was only around $3 at Sally Beauty Supply, and I’ve revived so many old polishes with it already!  A little side note here: Don’t thin your polish out with acetone or polish remover.  It may work temporarily, but ultimately, it will ruin the polish you are trying to fix.

Anyway, after I thinned out my Blanc, I added about 20 drops of this green and one or two drops of this blue:

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I did a lot of shaking and ended up with this:

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It’s exactly the color I was hoping for!  I haven’t actually used it yet, but I totally will before too long!  I totally feel like a winner, winner, chicken dinner because I now have a new color that I can’t wait to use, and I didn’t spend any money!  My hubby will be so proud!

UPDATE:  I finally did use this polish for this pink, green, and glitter mani and I love it!

Have you ever mixed your old polishes to create a new one?  Did you like your results?