Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Dot Party

As I've learned tends to happen with neons, my Shocking Pink manicure started to chip today so I decided to just re-do my nails even though it's only been two days! I normally try to go a lot longer than that, and I don't know how other people do this. It's a lot of work! :P And for those of you that paint your nails every day - you crazy!!! ;)

I started this mani with Orly White Tips which is the only white I have. It's not great but I know whites are tricky and I'm cheap so I want to use it before just buying another bottle of white polish. Anywho... then I put on one coat of Gelous to hopefully prevent the white from streaking into the dots when it came time to put on topcoat. I was going for a dot gradient look using Orly Royal Navy, OPI Flashbulb Fuchsia, China Glaze Paper Chasing, and Ulta Ultra Violet Femme. After I finished my dots I let them dry for over an hour! I was sure that I had given myself plenty of time and was confident that I wouldn't have any of the streaking problems like I did here or here... Alas! It was not meant to be :( I started with one coat of INM Northern Lights followed by one coat of SV but as soon as I put the INM on I could tell that some of the colors were streaking. The purple in particular kind of looks like it just melted, as all the dots have a bit of a haze around the edge. So then I was mad and looked like this:
Incredible Hulk illustration by WolfeHanson
Haha, just kidding! Seriously though, how do you avoid this?? I tried really hard to apply the INM with as few brushstrokes as possible but the colors still started to bleed. (Do the nail bloggers call this bleeding? Streaking?? Something else entirely???) Whatever it's called, any tips to avoid this dreadful phenomenon would be much appreciated! :)

It's still a pretty fun mani though if I do say so myself. Enjoy the pics!

Monday, June 16, 2014

I Got Nothin' to Hide...

So waaaaay back when in the days of yore (haha, j/k - it was only like six months ago although it feels like it's been for-ev-er!) I made my very first blog post. I talked a lot about my Dermatillomania, and since that first post I've touched on it a couple of times, but not lately. Actually it looks like the last time I really discussed my picking, stress, anxiety, depression, etc. was in February. Since then, I think I've been sucked into the vortex of pretty pictures, graceful hands, and flawless nail art that dominate Pinterest; I've focused too much on trying to achieve nails that look great in a photograph, and didn't want to talk about my picking issues or post "icky" images that might cause some people to shy away from my blog. But I'm trying to remember why I started this blog in the first place, and today I feel like I really need the reminder. This is what my thumb looks like right now:

To those unfamiliar with skin picking, it may look like I've had a reaction to a caustic chemical or something - I honestly don't know what "normal" people think when they see that - but this is all self inflicted. In terms of severity, for me personally this isn't actually that bad, although I haven't been really bad in a long time so this is sort of a low point. And even as I sit here typing this I'm picking at a spot on my upper back...

So I don't know what the point of today's post is. I have no thesis statement, I just felt like I should be honest and not pretend like I'm something I'm not. I've got nothing to hide :)

Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Shocking Pink!!!

Yesterday was my first official day at the pool for the 2014 season so I had to celebrate with a very summer-y mani! This is China Glaze Shocking Pink and it is definitely very bright. I used striping tape to create the lines on my ring finger, with my trusty OPI DS Radiance over top of white. This is what it looked like before I painted over the striping tape:

This manicure was inspired by this image I found on Pinterest, although I don't know who it belongs to. (Let me know if you do!) In hindsight, if I do something like this again, I might actually just use the striping tape itself to create the lines instead of painting over top of them and pulling the tape off. I think it would look a lot cleaner/sharper, although even with a few coats of topcoat it probably wouldn't be a very long-lasting look!

As you might notice, the left corner of my middle finger is chipped. That happened last night and I was pretty annoyed, but instead of shortening all my nails I decided to just let it be and "ignore" it. So pretend like you don't see it ;)

Alright, enough talk - I'm off to the pool again ;) Enjoy the pics!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Lil Wayne

I'm a day off my normal posting schedule but don't worry, it's okay... I am making it up to you by channeling Lil Wayne with today's blingy look! This is an old bottle of Sally Hansen nail polish in a color called Liberated Lilac. I think it is supposed to have a silvery-violet look (hence the name) but really it just looks silvery-white to me. It goes on pretty sheer and is nice and streaky (does the sarcasm come across over the interwebs???) so I used three coats.
I've been wanting to try something with mega rhinestones for a while so I just went for it today. I think it looks okay. Next time I'd probably use a nude or a light pink cream instead of a frost as the base color. Also, I basically just blobbed on a ton of top coat to hopefully help this last a few days, but of course the topcoat is pooling around the rhinestones in an undesirable way. I know some people just glue the rhinestones down after they've put top coat on, but then I feel like they'd be a lot more likely to pop off... ahh, the struggles I face :P

Suggestions regarding usage of "mega rhinestones" would be much appreciated. Enjoy the pics below!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Barney Poop

A while back while at Ulta, I succumbed to temptation and purchased a bottle of China Glaze Flying Dragon. I hadn't done any "research" on this polish but was just so in love as soon as I saw it that I had to have it! Well, when I got it home and made my swatch, my infatuation turned to hate! I couldn't believe that a polish so beautiful in the bottle - a bright magenta purple with magenta and blue micro glitters - could look like such crap when you put it on!!! It dries to a very dark, rough, matte finish, and there isn't even a hint of glitter visible. In other words, Barney Poop. Come to find out, I am not the only person to be two-timed by Flying Dragon. Apparently it is a neon (some batches are marked as neon on the label; mine is not) and for whatever Walter White chemistry reasons I don't understand, all neons dry matte. Also, mixing neon with glitter apparently results in a rough texture.

Well, after reading a bunch of reviews here, here, and here I decided to go with lots of shiny top coat and give this two-timing polish a chance. I paired it with Orly Royal Navy for a colorful french manicure. I did get a bit of cuticle drag on my middle finger - argh!!!! - but overall I like the end results. (See my first mani with Royal Navy - and my hubby's favorite! - here!) Since I don't have super steady hands yet I used some tape to get nice straight lines.

Here's what it looked like before any top coat at all.

And this actually looks better than it did in person. You can see how matte it is, but this purple is brighter than it looked in real life. After some SV though, things were much better. Enjoy the pics below!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Buzz Buzz

Greetings ladies :) For some reason today I was in the mood for yellow so I decided to go with a bee theme. I started this off with an under-color of white to make sure the yellow would pop. This is three coats of Sally Hansen Lemon Shark. (See my first look with Lemon Shark here.) I tried to use one of my new nail art brushes to do the lines showing the path of the bee, but I need to do some practice with those - it wasn't looking too good! So instead I went with the small end of my trusty old dotting tool. For the bee itself I did resort to using the nail art brush; I think it turned out okay. I wish the lines were smoother but I'll keep practicing! Also, I tried to let it dry as long as possible before putting my SV top coat on but the black still got a bit streaky. How do you avoid this???

Enjoy the pics!