Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Which is which... Part Deux!

Ever wake up in the morning and just feel like crud all over? Yeah, me too. Today is that day and I did NOT want to drag myself out of bed this morning, achy all over and with a scratchy throat. The only reason I committed to doing so was a midterm I had scheduled for 10:00am this morning. I have several other classes on Wednesday, both prior and after, but knew they didn't stand a chance as I could barely make it to campus with my eyes open this morning. It's a long drive, I tell ya!

Anyway, I perked up for my exam and feel as though I did pretty well but I bolted back home after a quick stop at the post office.  I fixed a nice lunch and my hunny bunny stopped by on his lunch break to dine with me before I promptly dove face first back in to bed. And now guess what... I've rolled around all day achy and uncomfortable, and unable to fall asleep. So, aside from stuffing my face with sweet potato chips (best chips EVER!), I figured I would drag my ass back out of bed and see if I could find the motivation to do something... anything. Besides, I ate all the chips. :'(

I've ruled out doing my laundry even though I practically have no pants left, it's just too much movement and work for my poor, frail, and sickly self. lol I can't read for class either, because my vision is blurred and I don't feel like perching my heavy glasses on my stuffy nose. I'm good at making all sorts of excuses... So, here I sit whining to you lovely ladies on the interwebs. Thank you for listening, I really do feel a little better already. :)  Maybe a little of this yuckiness has to do with stress. I only get sick roughly once a year and I'm about two weeks shy of my "anniversary" so to speak. Who knows, it could just be allergies and stress and I'm a wee bit paranoid. hmm...

ONWARD to the polish!

Yesterday I showed you all my nails of the week, Red Lights Ahead... Where? and  A Roll in the Hague from the new OPI Holland Collection, a luscious coral and vibrant orange. My color block wasn't a massive fail but it was a bit of a disappointment, so I thought I would play around a bit with flakies before I busted out my remover and cotton. 

As it stands right now, I have enough flakies. I have Inglot 202, Orly Fowl Play, and the entire Finger Paints flakie line. I didn't know about Sally Hansen Hidden Treasure until it could only be a pipe dream for a polish collector like me, and I didn't care to pick up Essie Shine of the Times when it came out because, well, I already had Inglot. Let me tell you about the one and only Inglot flakie I've got... I happened to wander into my local Inglot shop after window shopping in Sephora one afternoon on my way home from classes. I saw them almost instantly! FIVE different flakies! Oh. In tiny little bottles. Boo. Oh well, I played with them and seemed to actually know more than the MUAs in the shop and eventually walked out of the store a proud new owner of my very first flakie. Now that Essie has a flakie I feel a little bit gipped, but I'm not gonna get it because I see no point.
The photos below show comparisons between Inglot 202 and Finger Paints Flashy. I alternated nails, can you tell which is which? It is hard to tell, I know, but here's how you can tell the difference: Inglot requires only one coat and Finger Paints needs two to reach the same flakie density. And even then FP comes up a bit short. Color change is the same, so it dry time, but FP's base is a little thicker. So all in all, I prefer my expensive little Inglot and kinda want to go back for the rest. Damn and blast.


Inglot - 202

Inglot - 202

Inglot - 202

In these photos, and in person too, the color shift stayed in the warm range and next to no green or blue became visible. It's like my nails are on FI-YAH! Thumb, index, and my ring fingers are wearing one coat of Inglot 202 and my middle and pinkie are wearing two coats (and could possibly use a third).

Finger Paints - Flashy

Finger Paints - Flashy

Finger Paints - Flashy

This photo was taken in my car with afternoon diffused sunlight, probably around dusk, or it was just a little overcast. I can't recall exactly. You can hardly tell I'm wearing two different colors, is that coral or orange, orange or coral?? Alright guys gals, I know this was a really text heavy post but it feels nice to just vent about bs. Toodles!

Inglot 202 and Finger Paints Flashy

Oh, and my apologies for what appears to be a bunch of blurriness. My poor ol' iPhone has no clue what to do with all this vibrancy and color saturation!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Good luck figuring out which is which... with OPI Red Lights Ahead... Where? and A Roll in the Hague

It's Tuesday! Is that something I usually get excited about? No, not really, but hey... why not try and get in the spirit of the pre-Hump Day slump! I'm still busy but I wanted to slip this post in real quick and say good morning to my lovelies before I dive face first into studying for an exam I have this evening. I left all these photos large because, well, I wanted you all to take a good look! lol

This post features two of the bright cremes from the OPI Holland Collection and I thought I would be a clever girl and try a color block mani. Unfortunately, this bright and beautiful coral and vibrant orange are nearly indiscernable from one another both in these photos and in person. I challenge you to see if you can tell them apart! I'm being just a tad bit dramatic, you can tell a difference. It's just not as dramatic as I was hoping. Well, except for the flaming brightness that was my manicure all of last week. Yep you heard right, I got six days out of these puppies. I'm pretty pleased with that!

OPI - Red Lights Ahead... Where?

OPI - Red Lights Ahead... Where?

OPI - Red Lights Ahead... Where?

I did two coats of each color and it was enough to do away with VNL but a third coat could have been added, I decided a few days later, as I noticed it more when I had a little crud under my nails. (I know, gross huh? Oh well, it happens and then we wash our hands!) The boyfriend noticed my pretties when he met me for lunch just off campus, I always like it when he does. It makes me squee a little inside. :)

Removal was a little crazy, but no permanent staining. I can't lie, I was a little worried about staining because I'd read a few reviews saying there were some issues but I had none. I did have to use extra cotton and remover to clean up some bright coral and orange residue in and around my cuticles but nothing too extreme.

OPI - Red Lights Ahead... Where?

OPI - Red Lights Ahead... Where?

Below, holding A Roll in the Hague, I think the orange is a bit more noticable. I enjoy the vibrancy of these colors, the pigmentation was amazing, but ARITH will probably be mostly a pedicure color for me (I'm wearing it currently - since my last visit to the salon). I much prefer a good coral on my hands, not the pink ones, but a good orangy-red coral. *sigh* Just beautiful!

OPI - A Roll in the Hague

OPI - A Roll in the Hague

OPI - A Roll in the Hague

OPI - A Roll in the Hague

I hope you've enjoyed this little trip down my Holland color-blocking experiment. It didn't turn out as contrasting as I'd liked but hey, it was fun! And I'll be trying it again with other colors in the future. OH! Stay tuned for my next post, I tried these colors with a flakie comparison before I attempted removal!

Friday, February 24, 2012

a-england - Saint George

Happy Friday my lovelies! This is going to be short and sweet because I'm feeling a bit stressed and overwhelmed trying to develop a proposal for a research grant. I've never done this before and I'm lost at sea so to speak. So I'm going to give you all some photo spam!

Today I have a-england Saint George, the most saturated and pigmented polish I have ever, EVER, owned! Not to mention it's a holo, linear but only just slightly. I kid you not when I say that I only needed one coat and I have no idea why I insisted on a second. It must be out of habit. Lucky for you I only show my left hand in photos, because although application was a breeze I got a little sloppy with my right hand and let me tell you... this bad boy is hard to clean up once it works its way in to your cuticles.

Saint George wore like a champ, I got almost 6 days out of it before I went insane and just had to change colors. Removal was insane. After only two nails my cotton bud was completely saturated with color. So much so that my fingers were blue up to my knuckles. Seriously, the cotton ball was the color of my nails! WTH?? I had to scrub my cuticles with a cotton towel to get rid of leftovAnyway, in most lights I saw this as more green than teal but these pictures do a good job of showing the blueish tint that makes it a teal and not a green.

a-england - Saint George

a-england - Saint George

a-england - Saint George

a-england - Saint George

a-england - Saint George

a-england - Saint George

a-england - Saint George

a-england - Saint George

a-england - Saint George

a-england - Saint George

These pictures here aren't that good since you don't get an accurate color representation but it does look green, and that's how I saw it mostly. Very Pretty, either way - teal or green. I received several compliments and mostly people thought this was a very dark emerald green, they looked at me like I was crazy when I told them it was teal and not green. What do you guys think?

a-england - Saint George

a-england - Saint George

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

I do declare! Is a-England Dragon my new favorite green ever?? YES!

Hello Lovlies! It has been a while since I've posted, at least a week... time flies by so quickly and before I know it each day is over and it is time to go to bed. I think about writing in this blog and get a little sad when I barely have time to make it through reading my daily blog-roll. Some days I don't even get to sit at a computer long enough to do more than check out my webcampus, hell... my nail "schedule" has slimmed down from two or three polish changes a week to only one, usually done midweek for outfit coordination.

I started this blog because I wanted to be a part of a community of women (and a few men apparently!) who love this hobby as much as I do, and hope that I'll be able to get more involved. Very few people in the "real world" know how into polish I am! Unfortunately, not being able to blog gives me a lot more stress than I'd ever imagined. Also, sometimes I feel pigeon-holed only writing about polish. I had a blog, several in fact as the world of blogging started evolving, many years ago and it meant a lot to me. I met a few of my best friends through those blogs too. So hopefully I'll be able to give some time to this blog and shape it in to something that is more of a stress release that a stress burden.  

Ok, now that that's out of the way I want to share with you my very first European polishes! From the first swatches of a-England's new collection, The Legends, I knew I would be purchasing Dragon and Saint George - beautiful emerald green and deep teal holographics. I've since made up my mind to purchase the rest of the colors when I feel like I can justify the purchase. :) I emailed Adina for my order as soon as I found out they were ready for ordering but before they were up on the website and they arrived very quickly. I think it is wonderful that Adina answers her emails personally before generating an invoice.

Without further ado, here are a few photos! (Review further down.)

a england - Air Mailer

a england - Dragon & Saint George

a england - Dragon & Saint George

a england - Dragon & Saint George

Seriously, how amazing are those colors! I've been waiting to post this draft until I wore both Dragon and Saint George, and a little because I had no time, but I should have posted this sooner. I hope to post my Saint George photos on Thursday if I can keep on track.

Dragon is such a pretty GORGEOUS emerald green linear holographic polish with this amazing golden shimmer that makes it glow from within. Not only is this one incredible color, it is a one-coater too! I used two but only because I prefer it. The formula is divine and I had no issues whatsoever, I literally had next to no cleanup to do. Wear time was good, I got five days with just tip wear. Removal was exactly as I'd expected, a little more work than usual, but only because the pigmentation is so intense. Even though I had to switch cotton more than I preferred, there was no cuticle or nail staining. JOY!

From here on out, I'll just let the pictures do the talking!

a england - Dragon

a england - Dragon

a england - Dragon

a england - Dragon

a england - Dragon

a england - Dragon

Photo below was taken under my normal incandescent lamp and it does absolutely no justice to the beauty of this holo/hidden shimmer.

a england - Dragon

I'm sold, Adina... You've got a new loyal customer, this polish is divine!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

What I actually wore on Valentine's Day... with Essie and Color Club

Here is the mani I actually wore on Valentine's Day. I came about [ ] <-- that close to going without any polish for the day, but since I apparently cannot go a single day without color on my nails, what you see here was applied in my car between classes while I was on campus. You may or may not be able to tell, but there is no cleanup done here and I must say I'm purdy darn proud of my application skills! lol

My thumb, index, and middle fingers on both hands have two coats of Essie To Buy Or Not to Buy from the Spring 2012 Navigate Her Collection. I also picked up the namesake of the collection, Navigate Her, the rest of the colors I was interested in were duplicated by OPI in the Holland collection so I got those instead. (I'm still waiting on that package from Bloom.com btw... not too happy but it is supposed to come today). 

See those awesome blue sparkles in the bottle?? They look awesome, right? Well, they only show up on the nail under very specific  lighting conditions and you have to be looking for them specifically.

I think the blue/shimmer glitter added a little to the application issues I experienced with this color, nothing too bad, it just didn't want to move around on the nail unless I had a lot on the brush. Also, when the color dried the spots where the sparkles are had little pock marks. This even showed up through the SV, which did a little to help the sparkles be a little more noticeable. Wear has been good, tip wear is very minimal. I just wish I could change this already. Tonight, it's happening.. YAY!

Essie - To Buy Or Not To Buy

Essie - To Buy Or Not To Buy

Ring and pinky on both fingers are wearing Color Club Fashion Addict from the Spring 2009 Catwalk Queen collection. It's not the dud, the photos at the end show the linear holo effect pretty well. It is stronger in person but my camera isn't that good at picking it up. I almost didn't purchase this since I heard there was a dud version, but I did a little digging and went for it since the label code matched other non-dud versions I saw swatches of. I took the plunge and also picked up more CC holos in the same purchase. The swatches turned out very pretty on the nail wheel!

Application of FA was a breeze, a one-coater that didn't require a special base coat/aqua base. I used two for depth. The holo effect was only very minimally dampened by a layer of SV, it was negligible really and worth it for me since I can't go without a top coat.

Color Club - Fashion Addict

Color Club - Fashion Addict

Can you see the holo down below?

Color Club - Fashion Addict

Color Club - Fashion Addict

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

OPI - Excuse Moi! ...and, oh hey! It's Valentine's Day!

Since it is Valentine's Day I thought I would show you a pink manicure I wore waaaaaay back in November of last year. This draft post has been languishing away since then because I'm just not in the mood for pink lately. I have another pink mani I wore around that time that I wasn't too keen on either so maybe I'll post it tomorrow. Hmmm... two pink mani's in a row?? Crazy talk!

Excuse Moi! was the only glitter I bought from the Muppets collection and I'm not sold on it either. I think maybe I'll give it a go one more time before I put it out there for a swap or something. There is pink and silver microglitter larger round multicolored glitter and in a pink tinted base and I think my beef is both with shade of the pink AND the larger multicolored glitter. As a matter of fact, I don't like it showing up in other glitters either! lol I wish I liked it more, I just wasn't crazy over it. Womp, wommp womp.

OPI - Excuse Moi!
OPI - Excuse Moi!

Hey, check out these overexposed photos I took outside! Blargh. :'(

OPI - Excuse Moi!
OPI - Excuse Moi!
OPI - Excuse Moi!

Happy Valentine's Day my lovely followers! 

P.S. I'm wearing a very pretty lilac today! Take THAT pink! lol

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