Monday, July 29, 2013

Nail Challenge Collaborative: Flowers #4

Hey everyone! Today I've got my fourth and final floral nail art look to share with you. I was getting kind of stuck for ideas, so I turned to Google as I have in the past. I found a lovely design done by Sarah of Chalkboard Nails that inspired me.

My final look doesn't look much like my inspiration, because I chose different colors, and I opted to leave out the dots. Here it is!

First, I used a base of Sinful Snow Me White because I knew how sheer the pale green I wanted to use was. It's Sally Hansen Smooth and Perfect in Sea (picture below). Even with the white base coat, it took THREE coats of this green to even out and even look remotely greenish. You can't even tell in these photos, but the base was more seafoam-y in person. The roses are Sally Hansen Insta-Dri in Presto Pink, and the swirls are Mentality Triumph. The leaves are Zoya Midori, which I just got and I LOVE!

You also may have noticed my new nail shape! I filed my squovals into round-y things last Friday, and they lasted all of about a day. The next day I filed them into pointier, almost stilettos. My nails aren't quite long enough right now to make real stilettos, but I needed a change, and I LOVE this shape! I still have quite a few backlogged posts, so you will be seeing my squovals quite a bit still, but the stilettos are what I am currently sporting. :)

So what do you think of my roses? And how about the new shape? What is your favorite nail shape to wear? I'd love to hear below <3

Friday, July 26, 2013

NPR: Review - Julep Bare Face Cleansing Oil

**This product was provided by the manufacturer, in exchange for a full and honest review**

Hi everyone - happy Friday! Today I have something that is not polish related - hope that's okay! I was lucky enough to be chosen by Julep to review one of their new skincare products, and I wanted to share my thoughts with you. :)

Here's a look at my sample in its packaging!

It's called Bare Face Cleansing Oil. I have to admit, I was a little skeptical. My skin is kind of a jerk, it's oily, dry, and very sensitive at the same time, so I wasn't sure how this would work for me. Here's a look at the bottle. There's enough for plenty of uses in here, since you only need a little bit each time.

Here's where I got more skeptical. The product description says that this product works great for all skin types. My thought process: how is OIL going to help with my OILY skin!? No way. And without irritation?? Doubtful. My skin can get irritated if you look at it the wrong way. I did like that Julep listed all the key ingredients.

Now, if you're waiting for face/skin pictures, I'm sorry to disappoint you. When I wash my face, I have zero makeup on obviously, and I don't want to lose readers by showing you exactly what that looks like. But I do want to share my thoughts with you.

  • Using this product is kind of weird at first. It felt really strange to put oil on my skin completely dry. I'm so used to splashing my face with water before washing it, it just felt wrong. But, being oil, it went on smoothly and rubbed in quite well. 
  • After I massaged the oil in, I got right in the shower and washed it off; no problems to report there. It rinsed perfectly clean like any facial cleanser.
  • Now for afterwards. Normally right after I get my shower, I put on my facial moisturizer. This time, I didn't feel the need to do that! I didn't see any of the normal dry patches that I normally see after washing my face. My face felt moisturized, but not too oily. In fact, I couldn't feel a trace of the oil left at all. This lasted my entire work day (8 hours). I never needed to reach for my moisturizer OR an oil blotting pad.
  • The scent is lovely, very light and airy, perfect for summer.
  • Overall, my verdict? I definitely recommend this product for any skin type! Trust me, if it didn't irritate MY skin or leave it oily, it will work for anyone's skin! (Unless you have an allergy to one of those ingredients, then by all means, skip it)! I was very pleasantly surprised. 
What do you think? Would you try it? Because my skin is so difficult, I don't know if I would have tried it otherwise, but I'm so glad I did! This could really be a great solution for problem skin. 
What kinds of skincare struggles have you had before? I'd love to hear below!


These products were provided to me in exchange for my honest review and opinion. I am not being compensated for this post. Please see my Disclosure Statement for more information.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Pokemon Challenge: Gen II - Normal Type

Hi everyone! I know I sort of trailed off on the Pokemon Challenge, but I'm back with Generation II! And, thanks to a suggestion from one of the wonderful ladies in the group, I can knock off the four Gen I Pokemon I didn't finish from the first challenge, and it will still count. :) The OCD in me is happy, because I wanted to start Gen II, but not with Gen I unfinished.

Anyway! First week's type is Normal, which left a lot of options. I ended up going with Snubbull because I think he's cute. :)

Polishes used:
Sinful - Snow Me White
Sinful - Black on Black
Sinful - Sweet Nothing
NOPI - All Kendall-ed Up
CG - Kalahari Kiss
Seche Vite

The black french tips are meant to look like his ears, and the other two nails are the spots that he has on his body. He ended up being to small for me to really put those on there though. I'm a little rusty, okay!? Haha :)

So what do you think of my little Snubbull? I kind of like him, but I definitely need to get my freehanding skills back up to par! :)

Thanks for looking!
<3 Kelly

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Nail Challenge Collaborative: Flowers #3

Hello everyone! Today I've got a mani that I loved SO incredibly much, I didn't take it off for two days. That's like a record for me, haha. I didn't even plan this one actually, it just kind of happened when I received my Mentality Mattes and my Pueen plates on the same day. Then, when the Nail Challenge Collaborative group chose Flowers as the theme for July, I knew it was fate! I've been holding on to this one for a while, and I'm so excited to finally show it off!!

The Mentality Matte collection is absolutely amazing (and they've come out with so many new colors!), as are all their other polishes, and I highly suggest you check them out if you haven't already. Go ahead, I'll wait here. ;)

My stamping is still not perfect, but I think this mani turned out stunning. I used Rascal for the base, which is a matte black. Formula is ridiculous, it went on like butter, and I only needed 2 coats for complete opacity. Not to mention, dry time was pretty much instant. After that, I used my brand spankin' new Pueen plates (exactly which plate escapes me atm, and I'm too lazy to look) and Mentality Vicious, a beautiful red matte, to stamp on the roses. No top coat was used in the making of this mani.

I thought this mani was so gorgeous, kind of elegant and dark at the same time. It reminded me of wallpaper or lingerie, one of the two lol!

These polishes retail for $6.50 each, SHIPPED. Yes, shipping is included. How great is that!?  I literally have no complaints about these polishes - not only is the formula perfect, and the colors stunning, but they are great stamping polishes because they are so pigmented! I love that about them. Nothing worse than a gorgeous polish that you need 4 coats of. Mentality's Mattes (at least the ones I've tried) are all 2 coaters MAX. Some you can get away with one coat! :o

Here's a list of all the ways you can keep up with Mentality. Be sure you follow them to learn about new shades (which seem to come up almost daily!), promotions, and coupon codes!

Mentality on Big Cartel
Mentality on Etsy
Mentality on Facebook
Mentality on Instagram

<3 Kelly

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Hard Candy Sprinkles

Hey everyone! I have a TON of editing to do so for now I've got one from the vault to show you. When the new Hard Candy shades came out this past winter, I bought ALL the sprinkles. Had to! So I did a couple quick skittles at the time to show off these polishes. These photos make me miss my talons... :(

I've got Sugar Rush on thumb, then L to R I have Pixie Pink, Pink Taffy, Gummy Green, and Peach Pop. These polishes were my favorite because they were the brightest! I think Pink Taffy is my favorite...or maybe Peach Pop - can't decide!!

And here are the rest of the shades, these ones were the more subdued shades for me. I still used Sugar Rush on the thumb, since there are only 9 shades in the collection. Pinky to index shows Cotton Candy Pink, Sweet Tooth, Jelly Bean Blue, and Cocoa Smore.

I picked these up at Wal-Mart, I believe they retail for about $4.99 each. Formula on these was great! I used 3 coats for most of these for full opacity, and with one coat of Seche Vite, the glitters lay completely flat. Overall, I thought this collection was really fun. I can't really afford the Nails, INC Sprinkles, so for me these were a good alternative. Not exact dupes, but close enough to squash my "sprinkles" lemming. :)

What do you think of these? Which ones do you own? Which is your favorite! I'd love to hear below!

These products were purchased by me, and the above review features my full and honest opinions. I am not being compensated in any way for this post.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Nail Challenge Collaborative: Flowers #2

Hello hello! I've got my second post for Flowers Month for the NCC. Warning: first attempt at one-stroke flowers ahead - please be kind!
If there's one thing I learned during this process, it's that one-stroke nail art is waaaayy harder than it looks. I followed this tutorial from Lucy's Stash, and she makes it look so easy - it wasn't! At least, not for me. 
I plan to practice and get better at it though, because the possibilities are endless! :) I wanted to try poppies for my first try.
EDIT: Here is the photo from Lucy's Stash that initially inspired me:

I did some searching on her site, and was so happy to find that tutorial. And here is my attempt!

For this look, I used SOPI Is it Payday Yet? One of my new favorite greens!! I got it during the 50% off sale, and I'm SO happy I did. The black and red are acrylic paints I picked up from Walmart. The white dots are Sinful Snow Me White. I finished off with a coat of Seche Vite.

So what do you think? Not the absolute worst for a first time, right!? (Humor me lol) I'm excited to try again with more colors and now that I've gotten the hang of the technique a bit more!

<3 Kelly

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Mentality Matte Holo - Swatches and GIVEAWAY!

Hey loves! Happy Wednesday! Today I have a special surprise for you. It's no secret that I'm in love with Mentality, and the polish I have to show you is no exception!
I have been searching for a way to recreate the look of the suede version of OPI Here Today, Aragon Tomorrow for like, ever. I'm still searching...but in the process, I created this gorgeous mani! This is 2 coats of HTAG, followed by 1 generous coat of Matte Holo, and no topcoat.

Oh. My. Gosh. Just look at all the rainbows! The matte effect really brings out the sparkles, it's really different than a typical holo topcoat. And I can imagine all the possibilities of how gorgeous it would look over various colors! Next I want to try it over a bright fuschia. :)

Now, the best part! Hillary and Danny were kind enough to send me an EXTRA bottle, that one of you lucky readers can win!
Rules are simple:

  • 18 or over, or have parental permission
  • US only
  • NO cheating, I will be checking. Seriously. Cheaters irk me to no end.
  • Good luck! <3

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Nail Challenge Collaborative: Flowers #1

Happy Saturday everyone! I hope you're all having a lovely weekend. The boyfriend and I drove back to my hometown for the weekend to celebrate my Dad's birthday :)
Today I have my first NCC mani for July. This month's theme is flowers, which I wasn't thrilled about at first, but it's growing on me. It's making me choose ideas I wouldn't normally, which is cool. I've been meaning to try this Arizona Green Tea/Cherry Blossom look pretty much since I started blogging, so I finally got the opportunity to do it! 

For the base, I used Sally Hansen Salon Manicure in Green Tea (how fitting)! This is one of my favorite minty greens. Formula is superb and the color is just so yummy to me. I actually thought of this mani idea when picking up this polish. I used a striping brush and China Glaze Mahogany Magic to draw on some branches, and then I dotted on some flowers using my dotting tool and the polish brush itself. The light pink is China Glaze Go Go Pink, and the darker pink is China Glaze Rich and Famous. The dots were a bit raised up, so I ended up doing 2 coats of Seche Vite to be sure nothing would dent or smudge.

I loved how this mani turned out! It's not exactly like the tea bottles, but I think you get the idea, and I also think it's a really fun, fresh design for summer. What do you think?

Thanks for reading, and don't forget to check out the other flower nails the NCC ladies have come up with! :)

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy 4th of July!

Happy 4th of July to my American followers!! I just have a quick post for today to show you the nautical/patriotic mani I did a few days ago to celebrate. I will be working for the holiday, but I hope the rest of you will be relaxing and spending time with friends and family. :)

I saw a similar design on Pinterest somewhere, so I tried my best to recreate it with what I had. The gold glitters I had from Born Pretty Store weren't quite big enough, but you get the idea. I used Milani White on the Spot, Wet n Wild I Red a Good Book, and Sinful Shine Break Away. I used binder reinforcers cut in half for French tip guides. :)

So what do you think of this mani?? What are your plans for the 4th?? I'd love to hear below! <3

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Review: Fantasy Nail Lacquer

Morning, lovelies! Hope you are having a happy Tuesday so far! Unfortunately, today is the day I go back to work after a 5 day vacation, so I could be in better spirits but what can you do?
I know what you can do actually! Take a look at these amazing polishes by Fantasy Nail Lacquers! I was contacted by the wonderful Cassi awhile back and she asked me to review some of her polishes. Of course I said yes, and I was SO excited to receive these pretties!! I'll be showing you Magic, Sapphire Rose, and Semi-Automatic.

First up is Magic. Here's the description from Cassi's Etsy site:
"Magic is a dark gray base full of purple, pink, blue and silver holographic glitters. The glitters shift colors depending on light source. In sunlight, Magic becomes a rainbow on your nails! "

This polish builds up quite nicely on its own, but you could layer one coat over a base coat for quite a different look. In these photos, I've shown 3 coats of Magic alone, with topcoat. I think I prefer it on its own!

Indoor lighting
Outdoors; direct sunlight
OMG RAINBOWS EVERYWHERE! This polish reminds me of fairy dust sprinkled on my nails :)

Indoors; with flash
Outdoors; shade
Next up is Sapphire Rose.
"Sapphire Rose is a royal blue base filled with fine silver holographic glitter. Sapphire Rose does dry semi-matte with texture from the glitter. One coat with a top coat will smooth out the texture as well as add shine."

These photos show 3 coats of Sapphire Rose with no topcoat to show you the matte and semi-textured finish, which actually surprised me! When I put it on, I realized it had a super cool kind of leather/rubber finish, so I left it without topcoat. It was definitely matte, but still sparkled...suede maybe? I don't know, it's just awesome - words are failing me, so just look!

Indoor lighting
Outdoors; direct sunlight
Outdoors; direct sunlight
Outdoors; direct sunlight
I think I definitely prefer this one without topcoat, because I like the finish (I couldn't stop feeling my nails, lol), but I have seen some wonderful swatches of it topcoated on Accio Lacquer if you're interested!

Outdoors; shade
And lastly, my absolute favorite, Semi-Automatic!! In the bottle, I thought this looked like just another gunmetal grey polish. I was SO incredibly wrong! Here's the description and inspiration:
"Semi-Automatic is a deep charcoal gray linear holographic polish. 
The Lawful Line was inspired by some of my favorite television shows as well as in memory of my father, who was in the law enforcement field. 
Semi-Automatic represents the guns carried by the men and women who are dedicated to serving their communities."

All of the following photos show 3 easy coats of Semi-Auto, with topcoat, taken indoors in direct sunlight.

WOW. As soon as dumb Ohio decided to remember was sun is, I popped this baby on and my brain exploded. The holo in this polish is SO amazingly strong - this one I definitely will be ordering a full size bottle of! :)

In my opinion, Cassi has created some seriously amazing polishes here. I was thoroughly pleased with my first experience with Fantasy Nail Lacquers. I highly recommend you check out her Etsy shop and follow her on social media to keep up to date with restocks, new collections, and specials!! Right now, she has a ridiculous deal in her Etsy shop - you can order 3 full size polishes for $20 and/or 3 mini size polishes for $10! You cannot beat that. :)

Fantasy Nail Lacquer on Etsy
Fantasy Nail Lacquer on Facebook
Fantasy Nail Lacquer on Instagram

So what do you think of these? Which is your favorite?? I'd love to hear below. Thanks for reading <3