Mannequin Hands… And Then I Added Stuff.

I while back, I went on a quest to find my perfect “mannequin hands” polish.  By that I mean a polish that was as close to a perfect match to my skin as I could find.  I had heard that Deborah Lippmann had a polish called Naked that was a good match for a lot of people who are fair like me, so I checked it out at Sephora.  Yep, it’s a great nude shade that was a really close match to my skin, but you know what?  Deborah Lippmann polishes cost $20 and I absolutely refuse to spend $20 on a single polish.  Nope, I’m never going to do it.  I can’t imagine any possible scenario in which I would spend $20 on a single polish.  If I’m spending $20 on polish, you’d better believe that I’m going to be getting like, 10 bottles for that price.  Okay, let me get back on track…

So, this one time I was at Kmart and I spotted a color that I had never noticed before from NCY from the In A New York Minute line called Fashion Safari.  I did that thing that you’re not supposed to do (even though everyone does it) and opened up the bottle in the store.  I had polish on my nails already, so I just brushed a tiny bit of the polish onto the back of my hand and it blended right in!  best of all, it cost under $2!  I feel bad for the suckers who buy Deborah Lippmann Naked when there’s NYC Fashion Safari in the world.  Anyway, here it is with a matte top coat:

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Fun, right?  My hand really almost looks like a mannequin’s, right?  By the way, this is the color I used for the sand colored nails in my Beach Inspired Nail Art. In that tutorial, I actually painted my sister’s nails and her skin is definitely a shade or two darker than mine.  It’s a little hard to tell in the picture, but in person, you could definitely see that Fashion Safari was lighter than my sister’s skin.  I also used it in my Real Seashell Nails with a pearly color shifting polish over top.

Well, my mannequin hands fascinated me for about 24 hours, and then I decided that I needed to add something to them.  I opted for some of the chunky glitter that is Funky Fingers Pep Rally and I ended up with this look:

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I didn’t actually just brush the glitter onto my nails.  I used a little dotting tool to pick the individual pieces of glitter off the brush and placed them where I wanted them.  It’s a little time consuming, but not very hard.  I also opted to top them with Sech Vite, since it’s thick enough to smooth out this really chunky glitter. 

That’s it for today!  As always, thank you for liking, following, and sharing!  Come find me on instagram and facebook!

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Battle of the Base Coats

I have long been under the impression that Revlon makes one of the best base coats out there.  I’m talking specifically about the Quick Dry Base Coat.   This stuff is sort of elusive.  It’s not always available at every Revlon nail polish display.  (The one place that consistently has it in stock at the best price is Christmas Tree Shoppes. )

It looks like this:

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I used this stuff for several years as my regular base coat, and was always really happy with the results.

Then Seche Vite (pronouced “SESH VEET”, according to French people) came onto my radar.  It pretty much seemed like everyone praised their top coat as being the best thing ever.  Well, I can now say from experience that they do make an awesome top coat, so I assumed that they made an awesome base coat as well.

That’s what prompted me to buy Seche Clear:

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The formula for these two base coats couldn’t be more different.  Revlon is thick and pretty much looks exactly like Elmer’s Rubber Cement.  It fills in any nail ridges and self-levels really well.  When it dries, your nails feel rubbery, almost sticky.  Seche Clear is crystal clear and super thin.  It feels like you are just painting a really thin clear polish on your nails.  When it dries, it is slightly shiny a bit tacky.

I have never put these two base coats to a head-to-head test, so I figured it was time to do so.  I painted alternating fingers with the two base coats and followed them with 2 coats of white polish, a cute neon glitter polish, and Seche Vite top coat.  Specifically, Revlon is on my first and ring finger on my left hand, and my thumb, middle finger and pinky of my right hand. Seche Clear is on my thumb, middle finger and pinky of my left hand, and first and ring finger of my right hand.

Let’s see what happens…

Day One:

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Both base coats trucked along beautifully for 3 days. On the 4th day, I started to notice a few little chips.

Day 4:

Seche Clear nails.  There’s definitely some tip wear, and a visible  chip on the pinky of my left hand, and the first finger of my right hand.

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Revlon nails.  There’s some tip wear and a little chip on the middle finger of my right hand.

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By day 5, I was getting really tired of looking at the same polish every day.  Under normal circumstances, I would have repainted my nails.  Since I wanted to hold out a little longer on this head-to-head challenge, I satisfied myself by adding some different colored glitter to my nails.

At the end of day 6, I got a HUGE chip on one of my nails.  The chip was huge enough for me to declare day 6 as the last day of this little challenge.  Here they are..

 

Day 6

Seche Clear nails.  The left hand doesn’t look too much different than day 4, but look at my first finger on my right hand!  I lost almost half of the polish!  It chipped off some time while I was at Hersheypark, but I didn’t actually notice when it happened.

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Revlon nails.  Still only that little chip on the middle finger of my right hand.

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I also compared the tip wear of each finger on my right hand with its counterpart on my left hand and found that…

Thumbs:  Revlon wins (on my right hand)

First fingers: Revlon wins by a landslide (on my left hand)

Middle fingers: Seche Clear wins (on my left hand)

Ring fingers: Revlon wins (on my left hand)

Pinky: Revlon wins (on my right hand)

This little experiment has pretty much confirmed my hunch that the Revlon Quick Dry Base Coat will help your mani look better longer than Seche Clear.  Revlon will continue to be my go-to base coat for the foreseeable  future.

What has been your experience with base coats?  What base coat do you love?

Four Days of Wear

I’m getting ready to take my current polish off to do some swatches for you, but I thought I should show you something first. Here are my nails after 4 days of wear, one of which involved 2+ hours of yard work:

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You can see a little bit of nail growth at the cuticle, and the tiniest bit of wear on the tip of my first finger, but that’s it.  (In retrospect, I probably should have taken a picture of my right hand, since that’s my dominant hand, but really, the wear is about the same.)

Anyway, my point is that this is why you should use a base and a top coat.  My polish would chip in a day if I didn’t.  For this particular manicure, I used Revlon Quick Dry Base Coat, 2 coats of NYC In a New York Minute Amazon green, and Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat.  In the near future, I am planing to put a few base coats and top coats up against each other in an attempt to find out which ones really are the best, but so far I’ve never been disappointed by the Revlon base coat/Seche Vite top coat combination.

I’m off to write a much more substantial post now on how to make your neon polish look as awesome as possible.  Until next time, happy polishing!