Thursday, 30 August 2012

OPI Second Honeymoon

Today's post is a sort of 'palette cleanser' polish - one of my first nudes by OPI: Second Honeymoon. It's one of my top picks for wearing to conservative offices/meetings. 

OPI Second Honeymoon

Second Honeymoon is a soft pink nude creme with a touch of beige. The consistency of the formula is perfect and opaque in 2 coats. I have never experienced dragging/balding patches with it like I do for so many of my other nudes, which means that I don't have to wait too long before painting on the next coat. For swatches, I used 3 coats and topped it with a coat of Seche Vite for extra glossiness. 

OPI Second Honeymoon (direct light)

OPI Second Honeymoon (indirect light)

Isn't it just such a romantic colour?! I'm afraid I won't be taking this off for a while. Nothing beats a great creme nude. What is your go-to nude polish? Still on the hunt?

- The Manicurette

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Gold and Turquoise Saran Wrap Mani

I have a short, picture-heavy post today about my first attempt at saran wrap nails. I picked one of my favourite colour combinations: turquoise and gold. The turquoise I used is A-England Galahad and the gold is Essie Mirror Metallics in Good As Gold. The technique is quite simple really: paint your base colour, paint a thin coat of the second colour, scrunch up a bit of plastic wrap and dab, dab, dab. Ta da! You're done! You now have a beautiful marbling effect manicure in under 10 minutes. I was going for an antique marbling look and here's how it turned out.

The metallic gold reflects like crazy in the sun..hence why so many pictures. I'm pretty happy with it for a first attempt and I'm already excited to try more combinations (pink and brown, mint and peach, etc). What are your thoughts on saran wrap manis? Yay or nay?

- The Manicurette

Monday, 27 August 2012

Rainbow Box Nail Drops: Sprinkles Summer 2012

I have something very interesting to show you guys today and it is not nail polish! It is "nail drops" made by Rainbow Box, a New York based company started by the ever so creative, Leah. The KIT Magazine did a feature on sprinkles nails from the Rainbow Box summer collection and I had to try them for myself. You can see the article hereif you haven't already.

These are best described as water decals for nails and dissolve in acetone. The instructions seem overwhelming at first but if followed step-by-step, they're easy to get a hang of. I received a couple of test decals in my order, which is pretty awesome for first time users like me. Here's what the order package (photo-shopped to exclude my address) and the nail drops look like:

How adorable is that packaging?! Polka dots just make everything cuter. I received my order fairly quick, which is amazing given that the shipping is free. The sprinkles mani took me a total of 15 minutes to do and the results were spectacular. I did notice tipwear by the end of the day and that is probably because I used 1 coat of top coat instead of the recommended 2 coats.

For cleanup, I used my regular brush and acetone method. I'm sure there's room for improvement in terms of application but I'm happy with the results nevertheless. What do you folks think? Have you tried these yet? I sure hope they release a Fall collection..or even better, a Halloween collection!

- The Manicurette

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Indie Brand: Polish, Eh?!? - Gumballs Swatch and Review

This gives a completely new meaning to buying local. Polish, Eh?!? is an indie nail polish brand created by the sweet Janet, who I had the pleasure of meeting when picking up my polishes from her (she lives in my city!). I got the 5 for $18 minis deal from her Etsy shop here

The first polish I tried is called Gumballs, a clear base with different sized white glitter and colourful medium hex glitter. The formula is so great, no goopiness or long dry time. I had no trouble getting an even distribution of glitter on the nail. It is quite a top-coat hungry polish so I used 2 coats of Seche Vite instead of the standard 1 coat. I layered it over 2 coats of Essie Navigate Her and 1 coat of OPI Gargantuan Green Grape. I imagine this would look great on practically any polish, as Janet demonstrated in he swatches on the Etsy polish listing. 

Polish Eh?!? Gumballs

Polish, Eh?!? Gumballs (macro)

This was also the first time I tried Essie Navigate Her from the Spring 2012 collection. It is a dusty pistachio creme. Formula is impeccable in my opinion, just thin enough for easy application and full coverage in 2 coats. I'm usually wary of green polishes but this one is staying out to be worn in Fall. Here's 2 coats and no top coat:

Essie Navigate Her

I'm glad I came across Polish, Eh?!? and I plan on doing a spam post with the rest of the colours soon. What do guys think? First impression?

- The Manicurette

Friday, 24 August 2012

Stamping with Essie Mirror Metallics Fall 2012: Part I

Today's post is on Essie's Mirror Metallics collection which I wasn't too excited about till I tried it for stamping. The collection has five metallics: Blue Rhapsody, Penny Talk, Good As Gold, No Place Like Chrome, and Nothing Else Metals. I got the first four during the Shoppers Drug Mart BOGO sale last month and I want to show you guys how amazing these are for stamping! As stand alone polishes, I have heard they are a streaky mess so I won't get into the individual swatches.

Blue Rhapsody is a metallic blue polish. I stamping with it over Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Co-Bolt Blue and it stamped well in the first attempt for each nail. The stamp is from Konad plate M73.

Essie Blue Rhapsody over Sally Hansen Co-Bolt Blue

Here's Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Co-Bolt Blue by itself. It is a dark cobalt blue metallic with a lot of pigmentation. Formula is great and I needed 2 coats for opacity. A lot of people don't like the Sally Hansen Insta-Dri paddle brush but I actually kind of enjoy using it. Co-Bolt Blue does stain a LOT so cleanup took me twice as long as usual.

Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Co-Bolt Blue

Penny Talk is a copper metallic, just like a penny! I did a french mani with a fishnet pattern. The stamping results were the same as with Blue Rhapsody and I stamped with Konad plate M57 over OPI German-icure

Essie Penny Talk over OPI German-icure

Overall, I am quite glad I got these polishes for stamping. I am not a fan of coloured metallics so I don't think I'll be wearing these alone anytime soon. What did you guys find these better for - stamping or stand-alone manicure? Thanks for reading :)

- The Manicurette

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Essie - Mint Candy Apple

Today I have for you the all time favourite Mint Candy Apple by Essie. I used it as the base for a nail art manicure with triangle french tips.

Mint Candy Apple is a pastel mint blue creme. The formula is one of the best that Essie has ever put out; I used 2 coats for the swatches. Dry time is great too. I experienced dragging quite a bit so I recommend putting on a very thick layer and taking off the excess with your brush without touching the surface of the nail. I also wish Essie would do something about their brushes because they are way to thin to work with! I used 2 coats of Mint Candy Apple topped with 1 coat of Seche Vite:

Essie Mint Candy Apple

I added triangle french tips with Wet'n'Wild French White, Nicole By OPI nail art pen in Silver, and some scotch tape. Here's the end result:

Essie Mint Candy Apple

Essie Mint Candy Apple

I'm glad I got a chance to wear Mint Candy Apple again. It's one of the 'classics' in my nail polish stash. What are some of your go-to favourites? Would this be one of them? Hope you enjoyed this post!

- The Manicurette

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Cupcake Manicure with Essie Cremes!

I have a very picture-heavy fun post today! It's a short review of Essie She's Picture Perfect from the Resort Collection 2012. I also wanted some fun nail art so I have lots of pictures of my cupcake manicure that I did with my Essie cremes from 2012 collections:

She's Picture Perfect is a lilac creme with strong grey tones and a magenta sheen. The first coat was streak-central but the second coat covered the patches well. It also dried fast so I had to work quick with my brushstrokes and not go over a wet patch again. The magenta pearly sheen is only visible at certain angles in direct sunlight. I used 3 coats of She's Picture Perfect topped with 1 coat of Poshe:

Essie She's Picture Perfect

For the nail art, I used a hairpin and the following polishes: Off The Shoulder and Fear Or Desire from Essie Summer Collection 2012, She's Picture Perfect from Essie Resort Collection 2012, Wet'n'Wild French White and Sally Hansen Insta-Dri in Pink Blink.

Just so you know how much I love cupcakes, here's a picture with my cupcake-shaped nail file that my friend, Julia, gifted me!

And here's a bonus picture of cupcakes I made around last Christmas. 

 And my five hour Harry Potter cupcakes to eat before the last movie! *Dork Alert*

I hope you like this slightly unconventional cupcake-oriented post! Thanks for stopping by :) 

- The Manicurette

Sunday, 19 August 2012

HARE Polish: Twilight Savings Swatches and Review

It's here! It's here! My first HARE Polish - Twilight Savings - is finally here and I am wearing it already. HARE Polish is an amazing indie brand created by Nikole. I got my bottle from Llarowe here. 

Twilight Savings is an indigo jelly base with fine purple glitter and silver square glitter. The formula was slightly gooey but the colour built up well by the third coat. Dry time is great for the number of coats I used. The actual colour is a little more purple than you see here. I've yet to see a colour-accurate picture of this online, it's just so hard to capture purple polishes! I used 4 coats of Twilight Savings topped with one coat of Seche Vite:

Hare Twilight Savings

I love the effect of the glitter in the layers below. Here's a macro shot in direct sunlight, the actual colour is a LOT darker.

Hare Twilight Savings (macro)

The bottle shot is a better representation of the darkness of the colour. Notice how in my swatch above, the bottle is completely full. I took the bottle shot after my manicure to show you that the level went down by a lot. I think that the formula is very prone to evaporating and needs nail polish thinner more often than other polishes. I have noticed this with my Pahlish polishes too.

Hare Twilight Savings

I love Twilight Savings as I have never come across a polish like this. I'm loving the square glitters! What do you think of this brand? Any favourites?

- The Manicurette

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Essie Poppy Razzi Collection 2012: Action Swatches & Review

It's that time of the year again...time for the Canadian National Exhibition (aka 'The Ex'). I'm super excited to be going to it today, despite the throngs of families that will be there for opening weekend. Moving on, today's review is on Action, one of the four polishes from the Essie Poppy Razzi 2012 Collection. I also have a very silly nail art mani on today to go with the carnival vibe of the Ex.

Action is a soft apricot-orange jelly that can be worn alone for a delicate look or over white undies for a bold, eye-searing neon look. Since subtlety is not my thing, I picked the latter and layered 2 coats of Action over 2 coats of Wet'n'Wild French White. The formula was slightly streaky but leveled itself in the second coat. It dries to a matte, almost-rubbery finish (as most neons do) so I topped it with 1 liberal coat of Poshe:

Essie Poppy Razi - Action

Apparently, this blinding mani wasn't bold enough for me so I updated it with a dotting tool and Black Creme and French White by Wet'n'Wild. The result was a halloween-ish ruffles mani:

Essie Poppy Razi - Action

What do you guys think? Too Halloween? I think I'll have to try this again with colours from the same family haha. As always, thanks for stopping by and have yourselves a great weekend :)

- The Manicurette

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Revlon: Whimsical, Popular, and Royal Swatches and Review

Today's post is on three of my four favourite Revlon polishes: Whimsical, Popular, and Royal. The fourth is Revlon Scandalous/Facets of Fuchsia and I reviewed it here. Revlon has always done classic colours and of late, they have branched out into the glitter segment quite successfully.

Revlon - Popular, Royal, Whimsical

Whimsical is a light blue sheer base with light pink and light blue hex glitter. It is a well-known dupe for Deborah Lippmann's Glitter In The Air. Although the polish looks blue in the bottle, it would take far too many coats to see even a hint of the blue base on the nail. I would call this a glitter top coat that can be layered over any colour. Fortunately, I have a polish that is almost exactly the colour of the base for Whimsical. I used 2 coats of Whimsical over 2 coats of Essie Who Is The Boss. The formula was great, the glitter didn't need to be placed, and dry time was decent for a glitter polish. 

Revlon Whimsical
Revlon Whimsical and Essie Who Is The Boss

Popular is a pink creme with silver micro and hex glitter. This is such a soft and beautiful pink, and a really good way to wear glitter without being over the top. The formula was so-so as I experienced some streaking and it took quite a while to dry. I imagine Popular would also work well as a glitter coat on a pink creme. I wore 3 coats of Popular topped with 1 coat of Poshe.

Revlon Popular

Royal is a royal blue jelly (although I hear there is a creme version of the same). This polish is just too yummy; however, I don't think it is translucent enough for a jelly sandwich. The formula is beyond perfect and gave me absolutely no problems. For swatches, I used 2 coats of Royal topped with 1 coat of Poshe.

Revlon Royal

Hope you guys enjoyed this post! Revlon polishes are super affordable and available at almost every drugstore/superstore. 

- The Manicurette

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Indie Brand: Pahlish Swatches and Review

I have another indie brand to show you guys today: Pahlish. I have heard a lot of buzz around this brand and finally got three of their polishes: Great Wide Open, Train Underwater, and Typewriter Keys.

Pahlish: Great Wide Open, Typewriter Keys, Train Underwater

Great Wide Open is a glitter top coat with a mix of white and multi-coloured glitter in a variety of shapes (hex, round, diamond, square, bar) in various sizes. This is the kind of polish that would probably look good with any base colour. The formula was a little thicker than I like and the glitter takes some effort to place. A tip for applying chunky glitters is to go over missed spots with the brush without dipping it back in the bottle. There's usually a lot of glitter on the brush and this helps place it over the missed spots. I used 2 coats of Great Wide Open over 3 coats of A-England Iseult, topped with 1 thick coat of Poshe:

Pahlish - Great Wide Open

Train Underwater is a sheer blue base with blue and purple glitter and holo shimmer. The consistency of the formula was perfect and didn't need any additional effort to apply. To bring out the blue base, I got a little help from 2 coats of Revlon Royal underneath. Train Underwater dries to a glossy finish and I skipped the top coat entirely.

Pahlish - Train Underwater

Typewriter Keys is a clear base with black and white shredded glitter with green and blue iridescent glitter. This was my favourite of the three, mainly because of how unique it looks! The formula was slightly thick and I had to fiddle with the glitter application a little. I used 2 coats of Typewriter Keys over 2 coats of A-England Galahad, topped with 1 coat of Poshe:

Pahlish - Typewriter Keys

Overall, I find Pahlish polishes very unique and fun. I cannot wait to try Typrwriter Keys over a coral creme. The only issue I had with these polishes is the extremely long dry time, even with QDTC (quick-dry-top-coat). It took foreveeer for Great Wide Open to dry on my nails, I have no idea why! I would recommend using these when you don't have to rush out of the house anytime soon. Other than that, this brand is full of creativity and perfect combinations! I bought these 3 polishes from their shop on Llarowe and they also have a store on Etsy.

- The Manicurette

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

A-England The Legend and The Mythicals Swatches and Reviews

Some A-England spam for you guys today! Three from The Mythicals and one from the Legend. Can you tell I am slightly obsessed with their polishes? Here's what's coming:

Iseult is a light pink creme with subtle shimmer, giving it a pearly finish. The formula is  on the thinner side but easy to work with nonetheless. I'm happy to say that I didn't experience dragging or balding as I'm always on the lookout for a pink creme with a decent formula. Here are 3 coats of Iseult with 1 coat of Poshe:

A-England - Iseult

Dragon is a light green base with scattered holo glitter. The formula is a one-coater and the application was smooth and buttery! So gorgeous in the sun. I added a blurred macro shot to show you the power of the holo glitter. Here's 1 coat of Dragon with 1 coat of Poshe:

A-England - Dragon

A-England - Dragon (macro)

Galahad is a dark and dusty turquoise creme. The formula is slightly runny and needed 2 coats for full coverage. Again, A-England amazes me with how pigmented their polishes are, never needing more than 2 coats. Here are 2 coats of Galahad with 1 coat of Poshe:

A-England - Galahad

Lancelot is a dark red-based black creme. The formula is pigmented and non-fussy, drying to a glossy finish. To show you what I mean about the black being 'red-based', I used 1 thick coat on all nails except for the pinkie, on which I used a thin coat of Lancelot. You can see the reddish tinge quite clearly on that nail.

A-England - Lancelot

I decided to have some fun with Galahad & Lancelot and did a simple polka dot mani with a frilly edge: 

A-England - Galahad & Lancelot

Bridal Veil is a black base with multi-coloured holo glitter. I needed 2 coats to build opacity. The different colours of the holo glitter stand out very well in the black base. This is such a great polish for those (like me!) who don't feel comfortable wearing a black nail polish by itself. The glitter tones down the harshness of the black and adds beautiful depth! Here are 2 coats of Bridal Veil with 1 coat of Poshe:

A-England - Bridal Veil

I can't believe I have already reviewed all my A-Englands! I love this brand a lot because of their unique colours and consistency with delivering high quality formula every time. I hope you enjoyed this post!

- The Manicurette
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