Stay frosty!

I got bored last night, and decided to break out the toys. So here it is, my first ever sponged glitter gradient!

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I started off with a base of China Glaze Tongue & Chic (£4.29/eBay seller: nailswestcom), from the new fall collection. It’s a gorgeous deep teal shimmer, which is about as close to a one coat polish I’ve ever seen, though the formula was a little on the thick side. I then sponged over a layer of Model’s Own Southern Lights (£5/Boots), a dense silver holo micro glitter, and then a final layer of ORLY Angel Eyes (£6.79/Beauty Bay), which is a blue micro glitter with slightly larger holo pieces.

Flash.

Flash.

Natural light.

Natural light.

The result is pretty fantastic; I can’t stop looking at it. It’s so sparkly! I will definitely be repeating this one, probably for Christmas. Sponging turned out to be a lot easier than I feared, so I’m keen to try some 2 colour gradients in the very near future. My shaky hands prevent me from doing a lot of really skilled technical stuff, but I’m pretty sure I can get to grips with gradients!

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Triple Trouble

It’s a bumper threefer day today; I’ve been on a spree trying to swatch the last of my birthday haul, and the remaining greens just seemed to gel nicely together, so here you go. First up is Butter London Thames, a delicious bottle green shimmer with just a hint of blue undertone. The formula is quite thin and required 3 coats, though it was smooth and even. It’s subtle, but I really like it.

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And now, the double whammy! Below is 2 coats of Nubar Reclaim, a moss green holo, and on my thumb and ring finger is a single coat Nubar Teal Glitter layered over. The holo isn’t quite as strong as some I’ve tried, but the effect is quite lovely and the glitter is really dense and shiny! I really like this mani, though it’s definitely more summer colours, and as the weather is turning, it’ll soon be time to start breaking out the fall/winter shades.

With flash.

With flash.

Sunlight.

Sunlight.

This is almost the last of my birthday polishes, just one more to go!

In other news, back in August, I bought a box of 7 Color Club polishes in TKMaxx in Oxford. Unfortunately, the boxed sets in TKMaxx often get muddled up, so it’s not a complete set. Add to the the fact that the discounted sets usually don’t have the colour names on the bottles, and I basically had a jumble of unidentified polishes on my hands! However, after 6 weeks of madly pawing through swatches of old Color Club collections, I now believe I have successfully identified all of them; they turned out to be a mix of the Back To Boho Fall 2012 set and the Alter Ego Spring 2011 set. Both collections are gorgeous, so I’ll be swatching what I’ve got very soon. Somehow it looks as though I got the best of both collections, and considering the whole box only cost me £7.99, I am feeling pretty damn pleased with myself!

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Nice, huh? Can’t wait to see them on my nails!

Glitterquake!

Now, I’m not really a fan of textured polishes, for various reasons. However, I loved the colour of this shade in the bottle so much that I decided to take a chance. This is Model’s Own Absinthe (£5/Boots) from the Velvet Goth Collection, which itself claims to be a matte, glittery 2D finish. It contains large green hex and micro glitters in a dark green base.

With flash, no top coat.

With flash, no top coat.

Natural light, with top coat.

Natural light, with top coat.

I appreciate what they were trying to do here, but I found the finish too textured for my liking without a top coat, so I covered it with Seche Vite Dry Fast, which made it just smooth enough for me, but didn’t completely ruin the matte effect. This is a gorgeous colour, and I did enjoy the multi-faceted glitter look, but as with a lot of textured polishes, it didn’t stand up to long term wear and my tips were worn and chipping after less than 24 hours.

I may eventually pick up the other shades from this range; there’s a black, a red, a blue, and a purple, and me being a bit of an aged goth myself, I appreciate the name and direction of the collection, but I think I will hold off until my dislike of textured polish wanes a little.

A little for what ails you

Bleargh, I am sick. Have been struck down with a horrible throat infection that is sapping all my energy. I almost didn’t get around to posting today, but as I’d already taken the pictures before I was assailed with germs, I figured it would be an easy one.

To make it even easier, what follows is more of my birthday haul. This is A England Lady of Shallott, a dense navy blue shimmer in a blackened base. As with all A England polishes, the formula is perfect; smooth and incredibly easy to use, and what’s shown here is 2 coats with no top coat.

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I’ve paired it up below with one coat of Nabi Purple Jumbo Glitter, which as you can clearly see is more like a holo or a multichrome glitter than just purple, even though it looks very purple in the bottle. I love this glitter, the colour shift is so clear and strong, I’ve been sitting around just wiggling my fingers, admiring all the pink, orange, yellow, green and even blue shifts. I expect the colour changes a bit based on what you wear underneath it, so I’ll play with some different shades at a later stage. The formula is pretty great too, you get a lot of glitter in one coat, and I didn’t have to dab it to get extra flakes on at all, which is a welcome change.

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The only bad thing I have to say about this glitter is that OHMYGOD does it ever stink! Honestly, it’s by far and away the worst smelling polish I’ve ever used, it was like jet fuel, cat turd and vinegar had a really nasty smelling baby. Ergh. Won’t stop me using it though, cause it’s just so damn pretty!

Anyway, send me some get well vibes, and maybe I’ll even get around to building my lightbox soon. Fingers crossed!

Home is where the heart is

bigsmoke2Here’s another gem from my birthday collection; Butter London Big Smoke. I adore this shade, it’s a rich, deep azure, with a very delicate shimmer. The formula, as with all Butter London shades, is reasonably thin, but very easy to work with, so 3 coats doesn’t feel chunky or squishy on the nail. I’ve jazzed this up with a top coat on my feature nail, which is No7 In The Stars (exclusive to Boots/£6), an adorable multichrome micro-glitter. I actually got an unprompted compliment on this mani today, so that makes it a win!

In other news, I finally bought a new camera today, so as soon as I’ve dug my tripod out and got a memory card for it, I’ll be able to start taking some decent picture of my nails, woohoo! Suppose that means I should put a little more effort into making my hands not look like I’ve been running them over with a tank made of cheesegraters, really.

The New Black

allnightlong1I’m back, baby! My nails are still a lot shorter than I like them, but they are in much betterallnightlong2 condition, and I’m really hoping they’ve stopped splitting for now. I have so much polish to try out, but I thought I’d start with a simple one, so this is Eye Candy All Night Long, which is not only my new favourite black, but is also on sale in larger Sainsburys stores for just £3 at the moment! It’s thick and smooth and would probably have been fine with just one coat, if I wasn’t so cackhanded. I’ve layered it with a single coat of 2true Glitterati Shade 5 (£1.99/Superdrug), and then H&M Matte Top Coat (£2.99/H&M), which is one of the more satin finish mattes, but I think it works.

Unfortunately, in the harsh light of day, I can see that I was a bit hasty with my glitter, and there are bubbles on a couple of my nails, but I think that was just the overexcitement at finally being able to a manicure again! I don’t mind though, as it’s still a really cute mani.

In other news, my last two birthday polishes arrived recently (thanks, Emma!), the gorgeous Teal Glitter, and Reclaim (mini) by Nubar. I have also recently solved my polish storage solution for the time being, which is great since keeping them all in oversize shoe boxes under my bed wasn’t really ideal. And I’m working on getting a proper camera/lightbox setup, so hopefully I’ll be able to start doing this whole thing right soon.

It’s Twofer Tuesday!

No, this won’t be a running theme, I don’t think, but it’s been a hectic few days what with a seriously busy weekend and one of my aging moggies needing a visit to the vet for suspected lungworm. Anyway, things seem to have calmed down a bit now, so here’s what I’ve been doing with my nails. Apologies for the useless pics, my phonecam is not playing nice with me at the moment.

chunkyholoblackOn the left, we have Kleancolor’s Chunky Holo Black (around £5/eBay), over TurquoiseMaybelline Purple Trend (£2.60/eBay seller: Cosmetics-Fairy), neither of which excited me very much, but the coverage was solid for both (one coat each), so it’s just personal taste on the colour.

And on the right, inspired by the dichroic glass of my favourite pendant, Nicole by OPI’s Turquoise Texture (£7.99/Superdrug) over Maybelline MNY 665 (£1.99/eBay seller: xtrasdiscountstore). Now this is a look I love, two coats of a cool navy blue, with the gorgeous crackle of the Turquoise (which looks much bluer than it is unfortunately). Annoyingly, the tips started to wear really fast, though I haven’t exactly looked after my hands today. Too busy looking after a poorly cat to worry about my nails too much!

With any luck, life will stop kicking my arse for a bit soon, which will give me far more time to play dress up with my fingers.