It’s good to be home

Gosh, the weather’s all lovely at the moment, isn’t it? My nails are looking great, so here’s a twofer, to make up for my attendance problems recently!

First up, just the one shot of Revlon Midnight Sparkle, a dense midnight blue jelly with 2 sizes of silver hex glitters suspended in it, that needed 3 thin coats for opacity. It’s a lot like Revlon Ritzy, which is a black base, but for some reason the blue looks much better. This is another wonderful Poundland find; I seem to get most of my collection from there these days! I’m really looking forward to having a massive blowout in there when Easter finally comes and I can start buying polish again.

Natural light.

Natural light.

And part 2 is Nails Inc Old Bond Street (£4.99/TKMaxx), a singularly unique shade, which is a mid grey creme with a bright pink shimmer! Again, this needed 3 thin coats, but dried evenly with no shrinkage and only a few visible brushstrokes. This is one of a very few polishes I own that looks marvellous in the bottle and on the nail. It’s actually quite a subtle shimmer, but it has the delicious effect of being classy with a naughty edge, like wearing a lacy black bra under a crisp white blouse…

Gosh, came over a bit unnecessary there. Let’s move on to the pictures.

Flash.

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Direct sunlight.

Direct sunlight.

As you can see, it looks equally fabulous under both artificial and natural lighting. In some light, you can almost see a dark moss green tone, which is just so pretty. Nails Inc have a rep for creating unique shades, and this is certainly one of the best I’ve seen!

 

Northern lights

I did it again, didn’t I? I promised I wouldn’t disappear and then I did! I’m not very sorry, because I’ve been terribly busy with my new boyfriend and slightly less new job, and I’m still not buying any new polish anyway. However, my nails have now returned to a considerably more sensible length, and I’ve been dying to show off my most extravagant purchase of the year so far!

This is the stunning limited edition piCture pOlish Aurora (18.50EUR/prettypolish.nl). I had to order it from the Dutch website, as the first run was sold out everywhere else that shipped to the UK, and I just had to have it. Luckily, I was able to arm myself with Google Translate, and after that, it was quite a straightforward process.

Aurora is a stunning glittery purple/pink/turquoise multichrome, which I’m wearing over black, as I now routinely do with all thin multichromes. The colour shift is very strong, and the glitter particles are so eye-catching. Here’s 2 coats over Revlon Knockout.

Flash.

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Natural light.

Natural light.

Natural light.

Natural light.

This was my pre-Lent blowout polish, and honestly, I think it’s worth every penny! You can see the other polishes in this limited collection on at piCture pOlish.

Graffiti my heart

Six new polishes, and three new manicures today! I recently picked up a small handful of the new Maybelline Color Show Street Artist top coats, so I’m showing them off over some other polishes I haven’t have time to swatch before.

First up, Maybelline White Splatter (£3.99/Boots) over two coats of Sally Hansen Blue-Ming Fast (Poundland). White Splatter is made up of various sized white, metallic green, blue and pink hex glitters, small circle glitters and large white strands. It’s not too dense, but also you get enough glitter pieces on the brush that you don’t have to muck around dabbing it on to fill it out. Blue-Ming Fast is a warm sky blue creme, quick-drying and hard-wearing, and lovely on it’s own.

Flash.

Flash.

Natural light.

Natural light.

Next, here’s Maybelline Boom Box Black (£3.99/Boots) over Revlon Emerald (Poundland). Boom Box Black is a mix of black and pale lime green hex and small strand glitters. As with White Splatter, it gives great coverage without fuss and looked fabulous over Emerald, a forest green creme which was fully opaque in two coats.

Flash.

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Natural light.

Natural light.

And finally, this is Maybelline Alley Attitude (£3.99/Boots) over Nicole By OPI Back To Reality…TV (£3.99/TKMaxx). Alley Attitude is the same mix as Boom Box Black, only the glitter pieces are cyan blue instead of green. It really pops over Back To Reality…TV, a deep mauve with pink shimmer – the formula is quite thin, but dried super quick and built up nicely.

Flash.

Flash.

Natural light.

Natural light.

It’s hard to pick a favourite, but I think Boom Box Black will be the one that gets the most wear. There was a fourth shade available in Boots called Urban Vibe, which is the same again with orange glitters. I didn’t pick it up first time round, but I might have to go back and get it; I’m not a big fan of orange, but I think I could make it work over a fire red or something similar. But whatever colour you like best, they’re a great collection of top coats from an excellent brand. Highly recommended!

Happy new year!

Well, there is it, it’s 2014 now, and I am finally done with the complete shitbag of a year that was 2013, in which I lost one of my oldest and most cherished friends and a beloved partner at the same time, I ran out of money on numerous occasions, my darling son turned into a horribly rotten teenaged black lagoon dweller, and my general physical and mental health has taken more tumbles than an elderly lush. But I’m still here somehow, and there’ve been a few positives towards the end of the year, but basically, I am glad it is time to be moving on to bigger and better things.

Also, I just discovered The Nail and Beauty Link, which is supposedly a trade website for nail polish, but appears to allow personal transactions. They stock a lot of OPI, ORLY, Nubar, Essie and Zoya at some pretty excellent prices. I have ordered a few things, I will report back on the quality of their service when I have received my goodies.

Anyway, I thought I’d give you a few of my festive manicures just to tide you over until I have time and energy to start swatching again. I still haven’t built my lightbox, but it’s high on my new to-do list, as is actually taking the time to catalogue my collection!

First up, Barielle Holiday Madness (TKMaxx/£9.99 for 5). This is a stunning olive green metallic shimmer; very festive and classy, and only required 2 coats. This held up well, even while my nails were at their longest and I was doing a lot of typing. Really like this one, will definitely wear it again.

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Next, vampy glitter tips from a combination of Revlon Black Star, a black shimmer and Maybelline Color Show (Brocades Collection) Ruby Refined (£3.99/Boots), which is a dense, delicately textured, pinkish red glitter, which made for a really gothy look. I think this one would actually look a little better if my nails had been shorter at this point, but it had a lot of drama. Wish I’d been able to show it off!

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Then I had to cut my nails back to almost nothing, and it was a quiet few weeks while I waited for them to be an acceptable length again. By the time I went to my first Christmas party of the season, I couldn’t stand it anymore, and decided to go for something short and funky. So here’s OPI Russian Navy (£5.99/TKMaxx) over Sally Hansen Raspberry Rave (£1/Poundland). This is a striping tape job, I wanted it to look sorta like random techno lights streaking over a dark sky, and I think it came out pretty well. Both polishes were delicious on their own, but Russian Navy is one of my picks of the year so far, it’s jaw-dropping! It’s a particularly curious shade, somewhere between royal purple and navy blue, with a subtle shimmer.

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And finally, here’s my Christmas day pick, Revlon Mistletoe (£1/Poundland). It really didn’t photograph that well, in natural light it is darker and has an almost green tone to it. But even as it is, a multicoloured micro glitter in a darkened base which took just two coats, and lasted through the whole of Christmas day and Boxing day, despite me spending a good portion of it wrestling with a live lobster and burning my fudge.

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Hope you all had a tolerable holiday period, and that you’re looking forward to the promise of a shiny new year. I am cautiously optimistic. I really hope 2014 doesn’t suck too much, for me or for everyone I love. Or you lot either.

As above, so below.

Two beautiful polishes for you today, both from my last trawl of the discount stores. First up, here’s Revlon Black Star (£1/Poundland), which is a drop-dead gorgeous black shimmer. It’s just packed with sparkle, and even though it looks quite tame in the bottle, it really comes alive on the nail. This may well be my new favourite black!

Flash.

Flash.

Then, I coupled it with ORLY Go Deeper (£4.99/TKMaxx), a blue/green hex glitter mix in a delicate blue jelly base. I’ve got a few blue/green glitters, and this isn’t the best of them, but it’s perfectly pleasant, and as it’s ORLY, it’s a great quality polish.

Flash.

Flash.

Natural light.

Natural light.

I do like that it has a few different sizes of glitter in it, but it’s not quite the right balance, and I think it needs to be a little more dramatic to match up to similar things I’ve tried.

Rain, rain, go away!

It’s a very miserable Sunday in London, wind and rain and thunder and lightning and all sorts. So I’m showing you something from a few days ago, which is probably the most unique polish I’ve bought all year so far. This is No7 Paradise Love (£6/exclusive to Boots), a pale green foil polish, dotted with tiny dark green glitter particles, and a smattering of slightly larger blue/green glitter chunks. It’s a 3 coat job, and has an almost textured finish, but not quite textured enough for me to hate it. When I bought it, I wasn’t sure, but once I put it on, I fell in love with it! What do you think?

Flash.

Flash.

Natural light.

Natural light.

I’ve really never seen anything like this before, I think it’s a perfect spring shade! Shame it’s not actually spring, really.

In sad news, I’ve been gluing my ring fingernail on my swatching hand back together for weeks, but on Friday, it finally gave way, so I’ve got a falsie on. It’s making me very sad indeed. Thankfully, I already have a stockpile of swatches to post, so I won’t have to publicly shame myself with pictures of the horrible franken-nail for a little while yet.

Mirror Image

A double today; the 2nd and 3rd polishes from my TKMaxx collection.

This is Color Club Total Mystery, a glittery royal blue jelly with tiny pink particles in it. As with Alias, the formula is quite thin and required 4 coats, but as you can see, the colour is amazing and bright. It is also pretty hard wearing, it took a good 4 days before any damage started to show.

Flash.

Flash.

And this is Color Club Ulterior Motive, which is almost the opposite of Total Mystery, in that it’s a hot pink glittery jelly, with tiny blue particles! The formula is much the same, perhaps even a little thinner, but still gorgeous.

Flash.

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Both of these are from the Fall 2012 Alter Ego: Reveal Your Mystery collection, which I’m so glad I found, as they’re all turning out to be wonderful. Well done Color Club on yet more amazing shades!