Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Razzle Dazzle

Orly Razzle is a key example of why you can't judge a polish by the way it looks in the bottle. I was given this polish as a gift from my mother for Easter. See, in the bottle, it has a raspberry hue with little bits of silver glitter sprinkled throughout it. However, on the nail, it turns more to a dark raspberry glass fleck polish. It's gorgeous.

The flower nail art was inspired by the incredible nail artist Robin Moses. She recently did a Henna Nail Design that was just spectacular. I designed this flower after seeing that post. You should check out her blog and YouTube page because she's just amazing.

For this look I applied 1 coat of CND Stickey base coat, followed by 3 coats of Orly Razzle. I used my Stripe Rite acrylic striper in white to create the flower. I topped the whole thing off with 1 coat of CND Super Shiney Top Coat, and finished with 1 final coat of OPI RapiDry Top Coat (didn't want it to smudge in bed!).

It's pretty safe to say that I love this flower design and this Orly color. Love love love. Thanks, Mom :)

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Easter Blue

After my franken bust, I didn't even bother swatching the second hand. No thank you ma'am. I left on my China Glaze Hologram and decided to layer over the top of it with a pretty, glittery little lady.

I applied 2 coats of OPI Last Friday Night over Hologram. I also painted on some freehand stripes with Stripe Rite acrylic stripers in pink and white. I'm absolutely loving how it turned out.

What's cool about this layering combo is that you get the holo from Hologram, but then you also get the awesome duochrome large hexagon and micro glitters in Last Friday Night. Honestly, when the sun hits this combo, it's just awesome. In fact, this combination is very similar to the nails I did in this post, but I actually like this combination better. It's a little bit softer and very feminine-feeling.

Happy Easter :)

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Franken Bust

You asked for it...

... I swatched my franken Nickel and Dime-mond. Needless to say... well I'll just let the pictures do the talking.

First, if you missed my franken post, here's how Nickel and Dime-mond turned out:

I started with China Glaze Strong Adhesion Base Coat and 2 coats of China Glaze Hologram.

(Sorry so messy and blurry! I hadn't cleaned it up yet)
Then I added 2 coats of Nickel and Dime-mond:

I'm sorry the pictures are so blurry. I was so frustrated with this awful franken that I slacked a little bit. And you know what? It was stinky. It actually smelled horrible. I'm not sure if it was the melting of the flakies or what... but it was bad.

I'm sorry for this horrible mani/franken/post. I have a great one for you coming up soon!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Big Lots Love

I was pleasantly surprised recently with Big Lots and I wanted to share what I found!

OK, no offense, Maybelline, but the white and the black polishes are super-horrible. I didn't even bother writing their names down because they're pretty much trash. However, that orange treat you see on the left is Pink Pinata. Let me show you why I bought it...

Um, flakie amazing-ness. It was pretty much love at first sight. I also found this beauty by Revlon that everyone seems to rave about:

Perplex! They had a TON of them.

In addition, a little surprise came for me Thursday! Holly over at shimmerspark.com sent me the cutest little package.

Can you believe it? I'm so thankful! She saw my bouncy ball post and really wanted to send these little guys. How sweet!

Anyway, just wanted to show Big Lots and Holly @ shimmerspark.com some love today.

Happy Sunday!

Friday, April 15, 2011


With the coming Easter holiday, I've been just itching to egg-xhibit my pastel cremes. It's been painful to paint anything else on my nails. Have I mentioned yet that I love creme polish? I love love love pastel cremes. They're just so spring-tastic.

This week I had the idea to create a colored Easter egg look. I wanted it to look like I had dipped my nails in dye, as if they were almost gradient dyed eggs.

Are you egg-cited to see them?

They almost came out egg-xactly as I had hoped. Can you egg-xagerate and call this a gradient? The green didn't show up as much as I would have liked... but they're still pretty cool. And oddly enough, each color on my nails is the same as the colors on my Easter egg bouncy ball! Imagine that. How egg-ceptional.

I began with a coat of CND Stickey Base Coat. Then I painted each nail with 2 coats of China Glaze Lemon Fizz. Next, I sponged on each of the following in this order: OPI Gargantuan Green Grape, China Glaze Empowerment, OPI Done Out In Deco, and China Glaze For Audrey. I added Sally Hansen Disco Ball on top to hide my messy lines and to make it pop a little bit more. I finished with one thin coat of Seche Vite. How egg-xhausting.

To my egg-xtreme annoyance, Seche Vite cause some shrinkage on the tips so I have tip wear already and it's not even been a day yet! Argh. Though I must say, I'm pretty happy with how this egg-xperiment turned out. I hope you have an egg-xtra special Easter!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Don't Be A Flake!

I am a dork. Instead of swatching my first franken Nickel and Dime-mond as you were probably hoping for, I did something different. Don't hate me, please. See, I really had it in my mind that I wanted to do a "flakie" french tip, and when my franken didn't turn out the way I had hoped, I turned back to the original Sally Beauty Supply flakies to finish my manicure.

It mayyy or mayyy not have been a mistake (really draw out those "may's" when you say it... my trainer talks like that and it's pretty much hilarious).

I began by creating a french tip on my nails with Sally Hansen Midnight In NY. If you missed how I create my french tips, you can always go back and check that out here.

For some reason, black always sticks to my nails and it's always really hard to make nice, clean lines with my brush and acetone. So I apologize for the staining and messiness which will be more apparent in the upcoming photos.

Now, at this point, I should have applied my Nickel and Dime-mond franken, even though I didn't love the way it turned out. Instead, I really wanted the look of the original, bright rainbow flakies on my tips. So I pulled out my jar of flakies.

I had never tried anything like this before so I just sort of dove in head-first. Over my black tips, I would apply a thin coat of Sally Hansen Insta-Dri topcoat. Immediately after, I would dip my finger into my flakie jar. When I pulled it out my whole nail tip would be covered in flakies. I would gently brush off the loose ones with my fingers. For the ones that were stuck but still sitting on top of my smile line (creating an uneven line), I would push those down toward my tip with my cuticle pusher tool (whatever it's called). I repeated this process for each of my ten nails.

After I was satisfied with that look, I applied 2 coats of Gelous to the tip of each nail. I finished with one coat of Sally Hansen Insta-Dri. After letting my nails sit for about an hour, I went back over them and buffed off the rough spots and the flakies that hung over the tips of my nails.

Sheesh. Had I known it was going to be such a laborious process I would've just skipped it and applied my franken over the black tips. So, what do you think?

To be quite honest, this manicure was definitely more work than it was worth. My nails still feel really bumpy from the little flakies, and this has also been chipping easily. In fact, some of the flakies just seem to peel off for no reason. I have had this on for 2 days now and although I'm not impressed with the application or staying power of it, I just can't get over how awesome and stained-glass-like the tips look.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

My First Franken Attempt

Today as I was browsing Sally Beauty Supply, I stumbled upon a lovely little pot of flakies. They're usually meant for gel nails, but I couldn't help but picking them up in hopes of creating my first franken. I also picked up a bottle of Orly Shine On Crazy Diamond to mix with the flakies.

Here's what I used:

I wanted it to be simple and make a statement. And yes, that's a funnel made from a Post-It note.

I ended up adding about a full teaspoon of flakies to the glitter polish. I probably did not need to add that much... but it just sort of happened.

I was in love with the polish as soon I mixed it.

It was so cool. Unfortunately, as it sat for a while, the beautiful black rainbow flakies began to change into silvery chrome flakies as the finish came off of them. How lame. 

1 hour after mixing
3 hours after mixing

It's now basically a glitter/flakie polish with holographic glitter and silver flakies. It's still rather cool, but definitely not what I was going for. I have decided to name it Nickel and Dime-mond, because I totally feel like it nickel-and-dimed me. 

As for my first frankening attempt... um... it was OK. I'm not too impressed, but next time will hopefully be better.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Simmer Down Now

Have you ever began polishing your nails with a rough design in your head but really no clue how it should/would turn out? That's what happened to me this time. I knew I wanted "blue" and "flowers" but that's about it. I'm not sure that this is what I was going for, but I'm really not complaining. It's a blue glitter flower nail design:  

At first, I didn't think I needed OPI Simmer & Shimmer. I was wrong. In fact, I only own two of the Burlesque Glitters, and after loving both of them, I think I might just need to go ahead and get the rest of the collection. I need to "simmer down" before I get too excited about them.

I knew that Simmer & Shimmer was going to be hard to get it opaque, so I began with a coat of China Glaze Adore.

Once again, their Romantique Collection is great, but it shows every nail flaw (including my peely nails). I don't own too many metallic polishes for that reason. I think metallics are nice for bases to put under glitters and for stamping.

These are the steps I followed to achieve this glitter mani:
  1. Apply 1 coat of CND Stickey base coat.
  2. Apply 1 coat of a base color (China Glaze Adore).
  3. Apply 2 coats of glitter (OPI Simmer & Shimmer).
  4. Using a color (China Glaze White On White) and a dotting tool, dot on 5 small dots in a flower pattern on your accent nail.
  5. Using a toothpick, drag the middle of each dot toward the flower center of the 5 dots. This gives it the "petal" look.
  6. Using your dotting tool and another color (China Glaze Shocking Pink), make a small dot in the center of your flower.
  7. Apply 2 coats of Gelous (to smooth the glitter).
  8. Finish with 1 coat of Seche Vite.

And just in case you're interested, here is the flower detail on the accent nail:

The fun part about flowers like this (I had never tried them before) is that they can be a little messy and still be super cute. And surprisingly, they were really easy to do! I'll have to perfect this technique for next time.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

About the BALLS

Ahem... I guess I should clarify the title. I mean "about the bouncy balls."

I like bouncy balls. A little. No... a lot. They're kind of awesome. And I have a few of them. No, just kidding... I have a lot

I began collecting bouncy balls when I was in 4th grade and lived in Oklahoma. My friend Kristen who lived down had a shoebox full of bouncy balls. I thought it was so cool. I had a few scattered here and there and some in my "junk drawer," but I had never really established a collection. When I became intrigued with Kristen's collection, she suggested I start my own so that we could trade. GENIUS.

Thus, I began collecting bouncy balls. My whole goal was to trade her for her biggest and most-awesome one. This one:

Sure, it may look dingy now... and I think it was even that dingy back then... but boy was it cool. I had to have it. I think I traded her like 15 bouncy balls plus loads of fuzzy animal stickers to get that one. Yeah, I collected stickers, too. No big deal.

I kept collecting bouncy balls here and there... but when we moved to Idaho and I discovered Ebay, I went a little crazy. I bought a LOT. It was also my goal to get one from all the places I travel to. I've kept up with that pretty well.

One of my favorites is this one that I got from my mom for my 16th birthday:

Needless to say, the collection continues to grow. I have over 800 and they currently reside in an ottoman/table/storage thing in our bedroom.

It's not like I make The Hunk display them as our kitchen table centerpiece or anything. They're just quietly hiding out and waiting to be featured in nail posts :)

And that's the story behind the BALLS.
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