Saturday, August 31, 2013

Double Post: L.A. Girl Sand Storm & China Glaze Hawaiian Punch

Hi everyone!

Sorry to bring in another catch up post, haha.  I'm trying to get back  to regular posts but haven't quite made it.

Hopefully, some pretty polishes will make up for my irregularity.

L.A. Girl Sand Storm
First I have Sand Storm from L.A. Girl's summer Sand Blast collection.  This polish is a nice nude, sand color with that added element of texture.  The formula is nice and goes on evenly.  This is two coats which gives a nice texture on the nails.  I like this as one of my polishes that I could theoretically wear to work and still have fun with finish.

Obviously, this was the L.A. Girl answer to the new textured polish trend.  The Sand Blast collection had eight textured polishes, most of which had creme bases, though there were a couple with hints of shimmer, very different from a lot of the glitter heavy textured polishes we've been seeing.

The texture on these polishes is great, not uncomfortably gritty and is actually closer to what I'd expect of a polish described as a leather finish since there is a bit more gloss to the creme bases.  Also, these textured polishes are quite a bit friendlier to the pocket if you're looking to try the trend without having to shell out $8 or more. 

As far as I know these are still for sale on L.A. Girl's website, though I found mine at the local grocery/drugstore.

China Glaze Hawaiian Punch
Next I have a classic China Glaze, Hawaiian Punch.  This polish is a sheer red juicy jelly base with a subtle pink frost to it.  This particular shade of China Glaze has been around for a while, originally released in the old bottles, long before the reformulation of the polishes. 

The formula on this one was kind of a double edged sword.  The application was smooth and pretty even, what I normally expect from jelly polishes.  However, the dry time was kind of ridiculous!  I left about 10-15 minutes between coats and then used a quick dry top coat and still knicked the heck out of one of my nails.  I rarely have bad luck with dry time with jellies, but every now and then you get one.  So I'd say be patient with this one.

Also, if you're not a fan of VNL, you may want to paint this over a base color, this is three coats and it's not anywhere near opaque as you can tell.

What do you guys think of these?  Do you have any polishes that just go against what you expect from certain formulas or finishes?

Leave me comments and questions!

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Essie Cashmere Bathrobe

I have some pretty things to share!

As I've been talking about, all the Fall collections have been appearing and recently I was lucky enough to stumble across the Fall collection from Essie.

Now, in general, this year's Essie Fall collection is a little blah as compared to more recent collections.  But sometimes Fall collections have a bit of a lull.

However, there were a few colors in this collection that caught my eye, and I have one to show you today.

Essie Cashmere Bathrobe
This is Cashmere Bathrobe, a dark grey creme base with silver/blue glass flakes through it.  This color is gorgeous!  As with most Essie's the formula is smooth and goes on well.  There is a lot of pigmentation in this one, enough to get away with two coats, though I did my usual three.

Essie always does a good job of creating cozy fall colors with a little something extra while still being nice and simple.

As I said, I only picked a few...technically a couple and the other is a beauty also.  Can't wait to show it off!

What do you guys think of this one?  Leave me comments or questions below!

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat

Monday, August 26, 2013

China Glaze Gothic Lolita

Hi everyone!

Hope you're all doing well this fine day!

I'm sure some of you started school again today (if you haven't already started last week), so I hope that was a good day for all of you!

Have to admit I miss first days of school...the other like 200 days of school not as much, but first days were always a lot of fun.

But now I have my fun with nail polish, since I didn't find out how amazing nail polish was while I was in school.

Today's manicure certainly falls in the fun category for me even though its simple.

China Glsze Gothic Lolita
This is Gothic Lolita from China Glaze's Electrop Collection in the Spring of 2012.  This polish a fun, flirty light purple base with a hint of fuchsia/violet shimmer in it.

I'm loving this color for the stage between Summer and Fall, it's bright and playful but still has a kind of warmth or whatever it is about certain purples in the Fall.  I'm sure that makes no sense haha, but nonetheless, this is a great color for this time of year.

Also, as a side note, the formula on this one is a dream, not streaky or patchy, maybe even a one coater if you're good at even coats.  And the dry time is great!

I'm excited to get into my Falls (as I mentioned before) but having a nice pop of color like this makes me smile.

What do you all think of this one?

Leave me comments and questions below!

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Maybelline Color Show Vintage Leather Collection: Antique Teal

Have a swatch semi-review thing for you all today!

With Fall fast approaching, that means all kinds of new collections popping up all over the place, some you may have already seen and some that have yet to appear but are just as highly anticipated.

One collection to appear in my local grocery/drugstore and probably at some of yours too is the new limited edition Maybelline Color Show collection, Vintage Leather.

This collection consists of 10 leather finish (basically matte) polishes is your typical fall earth tones.

For today's post, I have one polish from the collection, and I'd be happy to do color swatch-fest pics of all the colors soon.

Maybelline Color Show Antique Teal
This is Antique Teal, a dusty blue color that reminds me more of denim than leather but is still very pretty.

These polishes have a smooth matte finish but what makes them different than most mattes is the fact that Maybelline incorporated flakes to add a little more texture and add to the "leather" look.

My experience with this polish is kind of so-so.  Being a matte, painting the first coat can be kind of tricky since it dries so quickly.  If you don't work fast enough and use a thick enough coat, the polish can pick up quite a bit.  But the second and third coats even out much more easily.

The color payoff was great and I didn't have a whole lot of staining, though there was some during is a blue polish after all.

The bigger problem I had was lasting power.  Since it's a matte, top coat isn't advised if you want to keep the finish (thank you captain obvious).  All of that is fine with me, I've never had bad luck with mattes without top coat, but this polish...dang.  In the pic, I'd painted my nails the night before, as I usually do and by the next morning when I took this picture the edges had worn so badly!  You can see it in the picture.

I'd say, as far as this collection, for the unique factor and the colors definitely worth the buy, but don't paint it too far in advance if you're trying to coordinate for an event or an outfit, you'll have some issues with wear at the tips otherwise.

What do you all think?  Have you tried the Vintage Leather polishes?  Have you had better luck?

Leave me comments and questions below and Like and Follow me on all my social media thingies!

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Finger Paints 15 Seconds of Frame and Orly Mermaid Tale

Who here wants to see a bright and sparkly manicure!?

Then you've come to the right place!

Since I'm desperately trying to cling to Summer colors I had to do a little glitter for my recent manicure and keep colors nice and cheerful.

Finger Paints 15 Seconds of Fram and Orly Mermaid Tale
 For this particular manicure I started with Finger Paints 15 Seconds of Frame, one of their 2013 Summer Neon colors.  This one isn't exactly a true neon, it doesn't dry to that semi-matte finish like neons do, but it's certainly bright and very pretty.  In person it's a bit more blue toned, more of a super bright teal or turquoise color but just amazing.  There's almost a jelly aspect to this polish and as you can tell its a bit sheer but really only in direct light.

To add a little bit of sparkle, I went for my Orly Flash Glam FX glitters and found Mermaid Tale, a matching teal/turquoise glitter made up of tiny hex glitters and larger hex holo glitters.  The coordinating color tone kind of gives a fun almost mermaid scales look to my accent nail...or at least I think so haha.

What do you guys think of this one?  I'm hoping to keep some summer brights on for a little while longer, but I'm sprinkling in a few more Fall shades to ease into the season (not to mention the new Fall collections!)

Leave my comments and questions below!

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat

Monday, August 19, 2013

Catching up from a busy week...

Hey all!

I have quite a bit of catching up to do.  So sorry, but this last week has been busy with job interviews and my still new obsession with my Netflix account and catching up on all the shows I never got to watch like a normal person rather than a nocturnal beast, haha.

Anyway, leaving my crazy blabbing behind I suppose I should do the catching up now, huh?

China Glaze Unrefined
First up is China Glaze Unrefined from their Texture collection from this summer.  This polish is a blue-toned pink creme base that has the sandy grit texture that's all over the place right now.

These polishes are great as both polish in general and as far as the textured polishes go.  They apply smoothly and the colors are gorgeous.  As far as the texture, these aren't too gritty or anything, so if you're still a little iffy about the grit finish, these might be a good option.

 I was able to score the whole line on clearance at Sally's in their last clearance markdown weekend.  If you guys would be interested I can do a swatch-a-thon of the whole collection, just let me know.

Savina Pumpkins and China Glaze Glistening Snow
Next is Savina Pumpkins a pretty much neon orange-peach shimmer polish.  This color is so pretty and fun for summer, but it being so close to the end of summer (I know I'm sad too) I thought it could only be improved with a little bit of a glitter gradient, so I added China Glaze Glistening Snow, a silver holo glitter polish.

This manicure was a lot of fun, and I'm loving Pumpkins.

Bongo Canary Island and Sally Hansen Diamond
Finally I have Bongo Canary Island, a bright pale yellow creme with almost a chartreuse tinge to it.  This polish is not neon exactly but it is a very bright sunny color that would look great with that Summer tan you surely have ;-)

Of course, with my bucket list entry of eventually finding a truly yellow holo (it's my unicorn) I decided to give myself the next best thing and added a quick coat of Sally Hansen Diamond as a holo top coat, which you can kind of see in the picture.

If you're curious about Bongo, you can find them at KMart and possibly Sears I'm not sure, but the formulas I've tried are all really nice for an inexpensive polish.

So anyways, that's all caught up for the last week!  Hopefully I can stay on top of things for the next few days and keep you all up to date.

What did you guys think of these manciures?  Any of you want to see some CG Texture swatches?  Leave me comments or questions below!

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

China Glaze Stroll

Time for more pretty nails!

I was able to dig up a few gems from older China Glaze collections at one of my local beauty wholesalers, which is always really exciting.

The manicure I'm sharing today is one of those said gems!

China Glaze Stroll
This is China Glaze Stroll from the Retro Diva Collection of 2009.  This polish is a deep burgundy red red jelly base with lots of golden glass flake in it.

Once again its another polish that glows from within.  The polish applies like a typical jelly but is prone to picking up if the coats aren't dry enough or if you apply too much pressure but with a light hand this polish is a dream.

I'm really excited about some of the other surprises I found and can't wait to get around to sharing them!

What do you guys think of this one?

Leave me comments and questions below!

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat

Product Review: China Glaze Real Nail Polish Appliques in Loop Hole

I actually have a product review for you guys!

I know it's been forever since I've done any form of real review, but that means it's about time right?

Anyways, let's get going.

For this review I'm going to show you some China Glaze Real Nail Polish Appliques.

China Glaze Real Nail Polish Appliques in Loop Hole
These appliques are in the pattern Loop Hole, a mod 60s vibe look that are a lot of fun to look at.

Now, this product is kind of bittersweet for me.  The pattern is really cute and that's obviously a plus.  Along with that, application wasn't too bad.  These kind of applied more like a sticker (for example Kiss decals or Jamberry) even though they're described as real nail polish.  That was nice, I have trouble with the Sally Hansen nail polish stickers being too thin or fragile when I apply them, so these being a bit more substantial was a big benefit.

So on the pro side we have cute look and decent application.  But there are a few cons.

First of all, the sizes that these appliques come in aren't in nearly a wide enough range and, though you can't really tell in the picture, I had to go with best fit on all my nails and pretty much all of them had shape/size issues, either too wide or too narrow or too round.  Now, as you can tell in a quick glance you can't notice the problems, but if you're OCD about your manicures like I am, you'd be wanting more size/shape options too.

Then the other con, removal.  Now, the instructions for these says you simply remove it with nail polish remover.  Now I don't know about you, but my go to everyday nail polish remover is not pure acetone.  I tried my usual Nourishing remover (typically the blue one) and didn't even make a dent in the applique as far as removal.  I had to come down to the foil method, which I've done before, not a huge deal but kind of annoying when I expected to remove it with my usual easy swipes of remover.

So, overall...

I'd say for people who like wear manicures for more than a couple days these might be good, they stay really well and apply fairly easily.  Also if you'd don't get obsessed with the "perfect" manicure you'd be fine with these too if they don't exactly fit your nail shape.

However, if you're like me and change your nails fairly often or just need to know that when you look at your nails you have to know they look perfect, I'd look into other nail appliques.

Hope you all enjoyed this review!

Leave me comments and questions below and follow me on social media!

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Ruffian Manicure: Sinful Colors Mesmerize and Sally Hansen Coin Flip

I'm back with my first attempt at a Ruffian Manicure!

Now, some of you have probably heard of this style of manicure under a different name, I know I did, either reverse french or cresent moon manicure or something else, they're all the same.

I ended up finding out the name "Ruffian Manicure" after doing a little browsing on the internet.  From what I understand the name comes from the origin on the design at a fashion show, but I could be wrong.

Anyways, I think the design is really pretty and sophisticated looking so I decided to finally try one for myself.

Sinful Colors Mesmerize and Sally Hansen Coin Flip
For this one I used Sinful Colors Mesmerize, a deep eggplant purple with a blue tone from the new Heart and Soul Collection, and Sally Hansen Coin Flip, a rose-gold foil polish.

To do this technique I started with three coats of coin flip as a base.  Then I went back over with two coats of Mesmerize, making sure to leave just a sliver of Coin Flip showing at the base of my nails.

The two colors together, the jewel tone and the metallic, look so nice together and I like it as an alternative sophisticated style to the french manicure which has never been my favorite.

I definitely think I'll be doing this look again in the future!

What do you guys think?

Leave me comments and questions and follow/like me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Tumblr! (Info in the About Me)

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Zoya Ray and Studs

Who here likes studs in nail art?

I know I do, and I was super excited to finally come up with a manicure to use them in, and I'm even happier that it came out as well as I'd hoped.

Zoya Ray

This is Zoya Ray, a deep emerald green shimmer.  I know this one is a little less like my usual bright summer color manicures, but it's still a gorgeous color.  As per usual with Zoya, the formula is a dream and goes on smoothly and evenly, no brush strokes and no streaks.

But as I mentioned before, when I picked this color I got the idea to finally use the stud wheel I found at Claire's.  This wheel has a lot of shapes in silver and gold and a few gemstones too.  For this manicure I chose the small, silver triangle studs. 

I LOVE LOVE LOVE how this manicure looks...maybe it's the fact that my nails remind me of Slytherin...or a superhero, but either way I think this is in my top list of manicures.

The studs add a nice edgy touch but are still elegant, and what's better, when you remove the polish with polish remover it doesn't effect the finish of the studs like it would with rhinestones, which is an added bonus.

What do you guys think of this one?  Have you had any fun manicures with studs or other nail art elements?

Leave me comments and questions and follow me on social media!

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Orly Melodious Utopia

Hi all!

Time for another manicure!!

I'm really enjoying the bright colors I've been wearing lately, and I wanted to wear another one that is just perfect for Summer.

Orly Melodious Utopia
This is Melodious Utopia from Orly's Hope and Freedom Collection from this year.  This polish is a bright yellow creme base with a lot of orange/pink flakies through it.  The formula for this one can be a bit sheer and streaky if you aren't careful, I suggest slightly thicker coats and I went with four coats total for this one to make it as opaque as I could.

This color is a lot of fun for Summer, obviously, and even better if you're working on a tan because it just pops!

I love my yellow polishes, they're some of my favorites, and it's so sad that I don't have very many.

What do you guys think of this one?  Do you find any colors that just seem to pop with your skin tone? 

Leave me comments and questions below and follow me on social media!!

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat

Friday, August 2, 2013

(Late) Pink Wednesday: China Glaze Sunset Glow

Hi everyone!

Sorry for the late post, but I got really busy Wednesday and Thursday, and didn't get a lot of time at home to sit and type up a post...or repaint my nails for that matter haha.

But tonight I have that post for you!

I always love Pink Wednesday, but this week was particularly exciting because I was able to use a new polish I received in a swap that is from China Glaze's pre-2000 (pre-Big 3 free) collections. 

China Glaze Sunset Glow
This is Sunset Glow, a pretty rosy pink based polish with a nice, warm golden shimmer in it from the Tropical Escape Collection of 2000.

As I mentioned, this color is from the time before Big 3 (4,5) Free so it does contain a little bit of formaldehyde as many older nail polishes do.  It has been discontinued and is considered HTF as far as I know.

So, despite its old formula, I do have to say this polish is great to work with.  You could probably get away with one coat but I went ahead and did three just because I got a bit sloppy on the first coat (it was late).

The finish was not as shiny as newer formulas but looks just fine with top coat.  The color is gorgeous and the tint that the golden shimmer gives is a lot of fun for Summer!

I'm so happy I was able to get my hands on this, big thanks to my wonderful swap friends who always help me get my hands on my lemmings!

What do you guys think of this one?  Do you have any older, discontinued polishes that you just love having in your collection?

Leave me comments and questions below!  Follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Tumblr!

Hugs & Kisses & Great Polishes!

~ Cat