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.

Flash.

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.

Weekend warrior

Just a quickie for a surprisingly sunny Saturday. This is Color Club The Uptown, a purple jelly with red/orange flakies suspended in it. It’s very thin indeed, so I put two coats of Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear Plum Power (a warm purple shimmer) underneath it, for a really deep colourful look. It doesn’t look so great in bright light, but shines under natural lighting!

Flash.

Flash.

Natural light (indoors).

Natural light (indoors).

God, how I love flakies. They are pretty much my favourite thing ever.

Have a great weekend!

Ultraviolet

Just a quick one today, this is Nabi 3D Holographic Effect Dark Purple (from my birthday haul) over Sally Hansen Virtual Violet (from Poundland). Virtual Violet is from the Hard as Nails Extreme Wear collection, and wow, is it long wearing! I used two thin coats of each shade, over my usual ORLY Bonder and finished with a coat of Seche Vite Fast Dry, and despite my usual disregard for the quality of my manicure, it last 4 whole days before even showing the slightest wear, so I will definitely be picking up some more colours from that range whenever I can find them. The holo top coat is full of sparkle, and I really love it. I’m keen to try it underneath a few other shades to see how the colour changes!

With flash.

With flash.

Natural light.

Natural light.

My nails are somehow looking great at the moment, so I’ve already got a stockpile of swatches to show you over the next couple of weeks. I might even try doing some arty stuff again soon, now that life has calmed down a little!

Don’t walk; RUN!

Well, I’m almost back from my hiatus, though I’m still not doing anything interesting with my nails as it’s still too hot and they are still too stubby and I am still a bit weepy and useless. Boo!

However, today I bring you my latest bargain haul, courtesy of my local Poundland. I got a tipoff a few days ago (thanks D!) that they had some OPI Shatter polishes in stock, so I popped down today, and boy, did I get lucky…

L to R: Sally Hansen Virtual Violet and Plum Power, OPI Shatter Black, Gold and Shatter The Scales.

L to R: Sally Hansen Virtual Violet and Plum Power, OPI Shatter in Black, Gold and Shatter The Scales.

Yes, these are full, brand new bottles of Sally Hansen and OPI for just a pound each; these polishes normally retail for up to £8 a go. So if you’re in the UK, get your butt down to your nearest Poundland and see if you can grab yourself some bargain beauties! Add these to the bottle of Jack The Lad by Butter London I picked up from my local TKMaxx for £4 the other day, and it has been quite the week for fantastic finds. Phew, it almost makes me feel better about the weather and all the drama round here lately… well, almost.

I hope to be back with some new swatches within the next week or so. Take it easy!