Wednesday 29 June 2011

OPI Rally Pretty Pink

Well since a lot of girls do 'Pink Wednesday' and I'm not an overly pink kind of girl I thought I would do OPI Rally Pretty Pink, one of the Serena Williams inspired polishes.  I love this polish, it really is pretty, but I'm not sure about the pink bit.  I guess it is pink but it is more of a dusty shade with purple leanings, but the gold pigment in it is what makes it a wow.  It gives it a foil like finish and it flashes gold like it has been kissed by the sun, with an undercurrent of colour that isn't swamped by the gold, and I just adore it.  I don't have a bottle of Zoya Faye for comparison but I'm told they are dead on dupes of each other so if you have one you don't need the other, but you DO need one of them!  It went on well and although I thought it was a little sheer initially it built up nicely with 3 thin coats.  The only criticism I have of this one is it took forever to dry!  It had already been on for hours when I fell asleep, but when I awoke some nails had lovely creases and imprints of cloth and had to be redone, not so pretty.  So I wouldn't do a mani with it unless you have plenty of time for it to dry (or use a quick dry top coat of course!) since I don't have a quick dry at the moment my option was painfully slow!  Once it was actually dry though it wore a lot better than I expected and had some tip wear but no chips and no lifting by the time I took it off.  So despite the long dry time, the end result was worth it. 


Monday 27 June 2011

Monday Mani - Floral Design over NFU Oh 51

Well its Monday, and the Polish-aholics Anonymous group on facebook (you should really join if you're not already in it, its a great group) came up with the idea of Mani Mondays.  Every Monday we all do our nails in the same theme which is voted by the group, and this Monday its theme is floral.  I already had NFU Oh 51 on (thats a post of its own later) and I didn't want to take it off, so I thought what can I do!  I went through my box of foils and transfers and miscellaneous nail things and found I had these lovely gold rose water slide decals.  Does gold go with purple flakies, course it does!  I hope you like it :)

Saturday 25 June 2011

Funky Fingers - Baby Baby Baby

Funky Fingers are made by the same people who make Color Club polish so I was expecting decent quality for a start off, and I wasn't disappointed.  This one is bling in a bottle, it has small blue based holo glitter suspended in a clear base, and it dazzles!  I love glitter even though it is a pain to remove but this wasn't as bad to remove as some I have (was still a pain though) but I think its worth the hassle. It was easy to apply and the wear time was good, and I personally didn't get any chipping or the polish from the entire nail disappearing like a falsie leaving a bare naked nail which can happen with glitters!  Overall, I love this!  Fun and funky and perfect for the summer, especially when the sun hits it (sunglasses recommended!)  Pic as always is click-able for detail :)

Wednesday 22 June 2011

OPI DS Extravagance

I am in love!  This polish was on my wish list and thanks to a lovely lady called Karin in the facebook 'Polish-Aholics Anonymous' group, I got it in a swap.  In the bottle it looks lovely, all sparkly and rich and sumptuous.  On the nail, and wow, it is awesome.  It has such a depth and richness to the colour, extravagance is exactly the right name for it.  I have been wearing it for days now and it only shows minimal tip wear, it applied like a dream and only needed two coats.  Ah OPI DS Extravagance, how I love thee! <3  Pics just don't do it justice, but heres some anyway (as usual they are clickable to enlarge to see the detail), enjoy your drool!

Monday 20 June 2011

Momentous Occasion - 100 Follower Giveaway!

Wow here it is at last, my 100 follower giveaway! I never thought I would reach 100 and I wish to thank each and every one of you :) so to celebrate I am having a giveaway YAY!


I have two prizes to giveaway, and you get to pick which one you would like if you win.  A second draw will be made for the people who want to win the remaining prize (whichever one it is!)  

 So heres whats on offer.  Prize #1 is funded solely by myself, and in honour of this glittering event, are the following sparkling China Glaze polishes :) 

Prize #1 - From top clockwise: Ick-a-Bod-Y, Frosty (limited edition), Mahoganie, and Nova

Prize #2  Is a chance to grab yourself a gram of the coveted Spectra Flair holo powder :D  and is very kindly sponsored by the wonderful Chris at Custom Creation Paints, home of industrial special effect coatings and custom paints, and of course the wonderful Spectra Flair pigment!   

Prize #2 - 1 gram of Spectra Flair powder

NOW ENDED - Thank you and good luck to all who entered :)

Sunday 19 June 2011

Spectra Flair powder - In a clear base as a franken holo top coat

Today I have the much talked about Spectra Flair powder.  This one is the 14 microns one, and is a very fine powder, so care is needed when using (a face mask is always advisable!)  I will be adding this one to coloured polish as I have in my previous frankens and posting the results in a later post, but this time I am posting the results of mixing it with a clear polish.

The first batch of this stuff I bought from a seller in the US, but this one was provided from a seller here in the UK.  As I said this one is the 14 microns one and the previous one I used was 20 microns, but to be honest I can't see any difference between them, which is good because it means I still get that lovely linear prismatic effect so many of us love and crave in our polish.  As this pigment is primarily for use in spraying auto's, the advice that came with this was to put it in a clear base and since I hadn't actually tried that before, I thought well, give it a go!  

The results for me were stunning holo effect shades of silver.  To get the level of holo that I personally wanted the top coat tended to overwhelm the base colour, giving me various light or dark versions of silver but thats OK, I loved it anyway, and it makes this a versatile little bottle.  I will concede I could probably have used less and got a lesser effect to preserve the underlying colour though** (edit, I put waaay too much in, using a lot less gives the same effect but without overwhelming the base colour!  I will post new pics soon), I will experiment a little further with this when I do my 'mixing with coloured polish' post.  But for now, I guess you want to see what really matters, the results!  OK here we are then.

Left to Right: Over dark purple, slate grey, black, silver, dark red, dark blue

The next pic is using the same top coat over OPI DS Extravagance since it was the mani I was wearing anyway and was due for removal. 
Indoors with flash

This pic was a coat of Color Club silver polish with the Spectra Flair top coat, very reflective and shiny. 
Natural daylight with weak sunshine
Indoors with flash
 Last one I have, because its always a difficult job for me to properly capture these prismatic/holo effects, I have taken a short video which I hope shows it a little better :)  Its not great quality but I think it does the job!

 If you want to buy any of this for yourself, you can get it here  from the very helpful Chris at Custom Creation Paints.

(Product sent to me for review)

Wednesday 15 June 2011

Barry M Instant Nail Effects Black Magic over China Glaze Purple Panic

I admit I have not been quite as enthusiastic about these 'crackle' and 'shatter' effect polishes as some have.  Don't get me wrong I think they create an interesting effect and I do like them, but I haven't totally flipped over them.  I decided before I took my purple panic off though, that I would go the crackle route as I didn't really have time to do a complete new polish before I went out and I really appreciated having it then!  It was also suggested to me to try black crackle over purple panic by the lovely Rebecca from, so I killed two birds with one stone really.  

The Barry M Instant Nail Effects was simple to apply, and it does crackle rather well.  I have to say, over purple panic, I could see why other people were raving about the shatter effects, it ROCKS!  Maybe its just a case of experimenting until you find the right shade before it pops for you, but I couldn't keep my eyes off my nails!  I love this combination and will be doing it again :)

Sunday 12 June 2011

Custom Painting Pearls - An Epic Franken Post Part 2 - Colour Powder

Well here we are part 2 - made it!  This post is for all the colour powders I tried, I was sent Pink Gold, Pure Purple, Sky Blue, Apple Green, Dark Gold and Shimmer Multi Blue.  These are fine powders and worked very well.  Again I just used a pretty cheap clear polish as a base in most of these and the results were still good with no application problems with the mix.  The only criticism if you could call it that, is that again the colour tends to sink in mine and needs a good shake if it has been stood before application but I must quantify this by saying that is more likely due to the base used.  As I said before you can buy specific bases for mixing with but I just used some basic clear top coats I had spare.

OK so on with the pics right (thats what everyone really wants to see, the results!)  I will start with my favourite, Pink Gold.  This turned out to be a duochrome, which I LOVE!  It flashes from a warm almost coral pink to gold, its warm and shimmery but not too girly pink.  In short, its just lovely.  See for yourselves:  (As always pics are clickable to enlarge for detail should you wish)

Next up we have Sky Blue.  It is exactly the colour it says and what you would expect.  It has somewhat of a frost finish as opposed to the sparkle of the Pink Gold, but it is a good clean shade, and a pretty version of sky blue.

Apple Green is up next.  Its a very good description for the colour, it is a crisp pale green, not too pale though, I wouldn't say it was a pastel.  This one is also a frosted finish, and whilst anyone who knows me, knows I don't really 'do' green, it is nevertheless a very pretty shade.  


OK on to the next one!  Now we have Dark Gold, ooh I love this one, its a rich saturated Gold, very shiny and shimmery and perfect for a sunny day.

Now I give you, purple and an apology!  Sorry I don't have better pics of this but believe me when I say you wouldn't have wanted to see the bottle, there was a clumsy, shocked 'oh nooo I've dropped it!' moment.  Once something is on the floor my dogs decree by law that it is theirs so I had to grab it quick, and then it was hairy because they are moulting.  Ah well, I can always post better pics with the new batch when I do a full mani :)

Right so, here we have Pure Purple.  It is a rich royal purple, and I LOVE purple, to me it is the best colour in the world, and this one makes me smile. 


Now last colour powder, but by no means least is the lovely Shimmer Multi Blue.  This is a pale pearly shimmer colour with a subtle duochrome.  If you had the patience I'm sure this could be used in a few frankens with interesting effects, or could be  built up to make a pale duochrome colour in itself, but for my purposes I have used it for layering.

This one is available in different colours too, but I have the blue, so I will show you that.  It is very difficult to photograph but in this pic I think you can just about see the blue tint in the bottle, and I have painted it on my pinky finger over China Glaze Purple Panic, so you can see the effect is has.

 Here it is layered over Orly Wild Wisteria (very dark plum)
  After this I thought I would try mixing a few of these colours up a bit, so I added some Pure Purple powder to the bottle of Shimmer Multi Blue, really just to see what happened, and I got this pretty lilac colour.

I also made a rather fetching bronze by taking my Dark Gold bottle, and I added a pinch of the purple powder, and a couple of drops of dark red polish to the mix, and here is the result.

Last one now :) I had a bottle of blue glitter polish suspended in a dark pink base.  In the bottle it looked promising but on the nail the glitter was too sparse for my liking so I thought I would liven it up a bit.  I added a little of the Pure Purple, a little of the Shimmer Multi Blue, and then some Blue Ocean holo flake and some Silver holo flake.  The result was this bottle of unusual polish, but I don't have another like it!  If you would like to see me add this one to my upcoming giveaway, please say so :)

 So there we have it, part two of my epic.  I will be getting some more of these powders for definite, and I might buy some better bases to use.  I will be doing more experimentation (once I have cleaned up the mess I have made from this lot!) and also trying mixing up different colours and effects.  I will do another post when that happens.  Thanks for reading :D

(I got these from the same place as the holo flakes in part 1 if you are interested and want some for yourselves, or want to check out the other colours.  Custom Painting Pearls here )

Wednesday 8 June 2011

W7 - Blue Lagoon pics and with stamp design - Is cheap always rubbish?

Hands up how many of us have seen a polish where you go, oh thats pretty but I bet its not very good, its not a professional brand or its a cheapo brand?  Or you have seen something that is blatantly a copy of a more expensive brand and given it a wide berth?  I'm sure we have all been guilty of a bit of 'polish snobbery', I know I have.  Its a balancing act though, you have to take into account how many coats you need, whether its a good formula to apply, and durability of a polish to vector into whether its good value or not.  

Take for example the Rimmel 60 seconds polishes I have.  I got three as a present (and I will post swatches at some point!).  They are lovely colours, they apply easily and the formula isn't bad.  Rimmel, whilst not a 'salon professional' brand is a well known cosmetics brand and so you would expect reasonable quality and value.  These polishes are £3.69 at Boots chemist, so you would think, ahhh thats not bad value then.  I think that would be a wrong assumption personally.  For your money, you get a bottle that is only 8ml, most 'big name' brands like China Glaze or OPI are 14ml or 15ml, or with Orly you get a whopping 18ml, so not really that cheap then.  Also I was really disappointed with the wear of these polishes.  They had shown tip wear within a day (in fact within a few hours).  The type of wear which you have to repair, so you mani looks old fast.  So, you see what I'm saying, expensive vs cheap, its not as clear cut as just brand name and cost.

IS there a point to this post you may ask, why yes, yes there is!  I was fed up and I went into a local shop and thought, what the hell, I'm buying a polish to cheer me up (as you do!).  I got a bottle of W7 Blue Lagoon.  This polish was £1.99 for 15ml and I have seen it as cheap as £1.48.  The bottle is a blatant copy of OPI, and to be fair I wasn't expecting much.  It is a deep blue/purple in the bottle with sparse glitter, but shows up as a lovely deep blue on the nail.  The glitter doesn't really make much of a difference but it still does give a subtle sparkle here and there when it catches the light.  The formula was easy to apply and went on smooth and needed only 2 coats.  So far so good, what about wear?  Well I had it on for three of days, and it did have some tip wear but nothing too bad, if it was a paler colour I probably wouldn't have even noticed.  I am not saying it is on a par with the big brands, but I was pleasantly surprised at the quality.  If their other colours are the same quality as this one, then I will buy more, in fact I have :) I have a neon orange glitter to try out (boy it is BRIGHT!) and a lovely deep aqua/blue/green/teal sort of colour, and a red glitter and a purple glitter, oh and a silver shatter top coat!

So, enough of my waffle, if anyone ever actually reads it, if you did then thank you, if not, thats OK too :)  Here are the pics, YAY!

 And now pics with a stamp design :) I was really pleased with how it turned out.  I used China Glaze IDK from the OMG collection.

Custom Painting Pearls - An Epic Franken Post Part 1 - Holo Flakes

OK this one is a bit epic so I have done it in two parts, but I have been frankening like a woman demented for the last few days.  I have been searching, as I know a lot of you have, for an additive that creates a linear holo but doesn't cost a small fortune, and on my travels I came across Custom Painting Pearls and a lovely chap there called Garry who was extremely helpful and approachable.

So, in short I procured myself some of his powder to try.  I know from our conversations that they supply an acrylics nails salon/supplier in London, so I will be trying this with some nail art later too.  I don't have acrylics or gel, but I have used them in the past and I'm sure this would be great for that too.  So heres what I received in the post (as always pics are clickable to enlarge for detail):

There are six fine powder colours and two holo flakes colours.  I was very excited about the holo flakes, there was a silver one and an Ocean Blue one.  Alas it isn't a fine enough powder to create the holy grail of holo polish, the linear holographic, but it is still an absolute joy to play with, and I know I'm going to be using it in all sorts of ways.  As I said, I have yet to foray into tip dipping, and art adornment uses but I can think of lots I want to do with these holo flakes.  The most obvious to try first was of course, dump some in some polish and see what happens!  First up is the result of adding the Silver holo Flakes, and the Ocean Blue Flakes into clear polish.  

Wow right!  Fine holo glitter, I love this!  This can be used on its own built up over 2 or 3 coats to create a gorgeous effect, or can be used as a top coat for equally stunning results.  I am going to put this over everything!  Here they both are layered over red China Glaze Phat Santa.


Blingy!  I like it lots, as always with these types its very hard to photograph though to show the true colours.

Here they are on their own, and the middle one is silver holo flake layered over Orly Wild Wisteria


So I would say in a clear polish it is a winner!   It does settle into the bottom of the bottle when you leave it stood (like INM Northern Lights holo top coat) so you need to give it a good shake when you use it, but I know there are particular bases you can get for specific content in mind, like a suspension polish base for glitters for instance that may eliminate that.  Whats even better, is I only tried the silver and ocean blue this time, they have holo flake in other colours!  Awesome right, I will for sure be trying them out too and swatching the results.

Next up for these holo flakes was to put some in coloured polish.  This wasn't quite as successful but still interesting.  I mixed some up with Orly Wild Wisteria which is a very dark plum purple.  Here is what happened.

 As you can see, it settled in quite bumpy, although bear in mind this picture is a close up so didn't actually look that bad to the naked eye!  A nice dollop of top coat later though and its a much different story.

 And finally a blurred shot, I don't usually like doing blurry shots if I can help it but sometimes its the only way to capture the sparkle.

In summary I would say these are a quite a versatile powder and fun to have.  I would probably go more with using it in a clear base, but it may be a different kettle of fish again if used for instance in a gel based colour.  I can think of so many possibilities I will be happy to order more.  

If you are interested in where I purchased these and want some for yourselves, or want to check out the other colours you can purchase them from Custom Painting Pearls here and a little bird tells me because of interest from the polish community they are going to start doing 'Polish Packs' specifically for us nail lacquer nuts!  Isn't that great :)

Part two, the pearl powder colours coming soon watch this space! 

Monday 6 June 2011

China Glaze - Purple Panic

This was on my list of untrieds and I was feeling like something bright, and now I'm kicking myself for not trying this one sooner.  I love love LOVE this colour!  I can't photograph it properly because it freaks my camera out, but the colour is really vibrant.  It is a neon so it isn't glossy, but its not totally matte either, it dries to a satin finish.  The formula is a bit draggy too, but not enough that you can't work with it, and I'm happy to forgive this little firecracker anything.  Now the colour, in the pics it makes it look much more pink toned than it actually is, but in reality I wouldn't really call it a purple either.  I would describe it more as vivid magenta, but it does have a purple shimmer.  Whatever colour you want to call it, I call it gorgeous, vibrant, wonderful!  It is really 'me' and I am definitely going to grab a back up of this one *hugs my beautiful little bottle*  On with the pics, which like I said just don't do it the proper justice.

Natural Daylight

Indoors with Flash

Friday 3 June 2011

Black Holo Frankenpolish with added Faux-nad

I know some may think why on earth did she want to cover this one up, but I never stay on the same mani for long anyway!  I got some plates from the Born Pretty store that I ordered a while ago and couldn't wait to try them so I thought to myself, you know this mani would look awesome with a bit of chrome silver over it (which is my favourite colour to stamp on anything!), and I think it looked pretty good.  I removed the black and painted holo silver on my ring finger and stamped black over as an accent nail, but to be fair it looks much the same as the others more or less, but I don't mind that I like it anyway.  The pics sadly don't show very well the nice holo under the design, but believe me its still there and still looks lovely.  I am also working on a big franken post hopefully to go up this weekend, so look out for that.