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Granite Nail Art with CND Shellac

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By beautopia · October 13, 2012 · 0 Comments ·


At the salon, I've been playing around with some Shellac designs that will appeal to clients. Some people would like to try something a little more jazzy than plain Shellac, but are hesitant to jump right into crazy nail art, so I wanted to find some Autumn looks that would appeal to a wider range of people. So I started messing around with various mineral eye shadows and MAC Pigments I had lying around and came up with a few stone, granite, and marble looks that are really cool looking and also with the glossy finish of Shellac, look like actual stones. The photo above is supposed to resemble granite, and I used CND Shellac in Black Pool as the base, then created the design with silver, olive and burgundy pigments and some alcohol. The final result was pretty neat, and my client was super happy with it. I'm kind of considering doing this on my own nails this week!

Click to see more photos...

"Ruffian" Reverse French with OPI Germany

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By beautopia · September 24, 2012 · 0 Comments ·


I wanted to wear two of my favorite shades from the new OPI Germany collection at the same time, and a Ruffian-style reverse French seemed like a good idea. The blue is a really pretty teal-toned blue with some pearly shimmer, and the green is a dusty chartreuse with some silver ribbon-candy shimmer. Both are gorgeous in the bottle and on the nail. 

Products used:

  • OPI Unfor-Greta-bly Blue
  • OPI Don't Talk Bach to Me
Tagged with: ruffian, nail art, OPI, nails, germany, blue, green, fall

Call of the Wild Nail Art with China Glaze On Safari

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By beautopia · September 11, 2012 · 0 Comments ·


I'm not sure how I neglected to post these up when I did them about a month ago, but here they are. I did an animal print mix using only polishes from the China Glaze On Safari collection. I did a mixture of leopard, giraffe and some colorblocking for this look. 

Products used: 

  • China Glaze Desert Sun (caramel)
  • China Glaze Exotic Encounters (marine green)
  • China Glaze I Herd That (bronze glitter)
  • China Glaze I'm Not Lion (blonde holo glitter)
  • China Glaze Kalahari Kiss (khaki)

Julep Maven + Trina Turk Fall 2012 September Box - Bombshell

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By beautopia · September 8, 2012 · 0 Comments ·


This month's box from Julep wowed me big time. I was happy to see a designer collaboration this time, and some really good shades. Some in the collection looked dupeable to me, but the ones I got were exceptional, and pretty unique. I went for the Bombshell box this time which included Alma (the greeny yellow) and Annie (the creamy electric blue) as well as a volumizing mascara which is a new product for Julep and which I will review seperately, though I will tell you now it's better than decent, but not anything heart-stopping. I also added on Otte, which is a weird-cool camel color. This month there was the opportunity to buy the whole collection (every box) for $50 as opposed to $20 for just one, which is a really good deal if you were interested in all the colors. I passed on this option as I have shades that look comparable to the rest that were available, but they all did look pretty solid and nice. 

Before I go on to the swatches, so you know, you can join Julep Maven and get a pretty sizable discount off their website/Sephora price by opting for the monthly subscription box. I have been a member for several months now and I like it a lot, myself. You can read my review on the service here, or you can view all my Julep swatches so far here. And if you're interested in joining, you can click this link which is my referral link, and I will get credit towards my subscription if you join (or just click to join at Julep.com if you'd rather.) Don't forget you can get your first box for one penny plus free shipping with the code COLOR 2012 or PENNY. Either one I believe works. 

Click to view the swatches...

20% Off plus Free Shipping at Barielle Today Only!

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By beautopia · August 21, 2012 · 0 Comments ·
20% Off plus Free Shipping at Barielle Today Only!
Barielle is offering 20% off plus free shipping on their site today only! Don't forget to check out their pretty new Fall colors!
Tagged with: barielle, Sale, fall

China Glaze On Safari - Exotic Encounters

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By beautopia · August 4, 2012 · 0 Comments ·


China Glaze Exotic Encounters 

If you care much about fashion forecasts, you should definitely be familiar with Pantone's seasonal Fashion Color Report. There's good news if you're looking for an Ultramarine Green polish because this is dead on. The formula/application is pretty standard China Glaze; two coats for glossy, saturated color. EE is part of the Fall On Safari collection and it's really pretty, I don't have many polishes in the same ballpark, so it's worth a look in my book. It seems like OPI Jade is the New Black may be similar. JITNB seems to have a lot less blue, and more yellow, making it warmer. I'll check later and post a comparison. Not surprisingly, the on-trend China Glaze has a couple other On Safari polishes to match up or complement other shades in the Fall 2012 Pantone report; Olympian Blue is similar to Man Hunt, Honey Gold is like a mix between Desert Sun and Kalahari Kiss or even I Herd That, if you like your Honey Gold glittery. 


L'Oreal London Fall 2012 Colour Riche Nail in Brit Invasion

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By beautopia · August 1, 2012 · 0 Comments ·


L'Oreal Brit Invasion -limited edition - $6 at most drugstores - 

Last week I showed you pics of another polish from the L'Oreal "London Fall" collection, Tea and Crumpets. This polish, Brit Invasion, is the other that I picked up at that time. I picked up T&C because I'm always searching for The Perfect Nude Polish, and I keep thinking I've found nirvana, but something better always comes along. Or I hope it will... I picked up Brit Invasion simply because it looked sort of unique. Well, that and the name, but I think I've covered that before. 

Brit Invasion is a smoky plum, a la Chanel Paradoxal, China Glaze Jungle Queen and Essie Smokin' Hot, but it's got a little something extra. Namely a generous glaze of bronzey shimmer. The coverage is excellent, you'll only need two moderate coats and wear is pretty good. I think it's the epitome of Fall polishes, and since metallics are big this summer, it'll make a nice polish to wear during the transitional period that comes in August between Summer brights and Fall vamps. 

Tagged with: L'Oreal, purple, bronze, plum, shimmer, nails, fall

L'Oreal London Fall 2012 Colour Riche Nail in Tea and Crumpets

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By beautopia · July 25, 2012 · 0 Comments ·


L'Oreal Tea and Crumpets - $6 at most drugstores - 

L'Oreal's new Autumn Colour Riche Nail collection, entitled London Fall, has hit the shelves, and I don't know about you, but this freakish Anglophile is doing the Arsenio Hall fist thing all up and down the drugstore aisles. I picked up two polishes from the collection, leaving the other four indignantly huffing at me from their adorable display. Don't worry girls, I'll probably be back for you later, I can't help myself. Tea and Crumpets is a creamy, fleshy beige, which sounds super boring, but there's nothing I like more than sexy nude nails. I can't wait for my nails to be ready for ovals again, this polish will look like pure sex on those bad boys. Even if T&C were less sexy, I know it will find it's way into the sentimental corner of my stash where I'll encounter it while on a purging mission and say to myself, "You can't get rid of this, it's called TEA AND CRUMPETS, you ninny!" 

The formula isn't exactly like buttah, but in three coats I got a pretty even look. I'll level with you, if it wasn't called what it is, and if it wasn't from the collection it's from, I may like it less, but I have spent a lot of money on polishes that look a heck of a lot like this, so I must really like them anyway despite what they may or may not be named. BTW, the other polish I picked up from this collection is called Brit Invasion... swatches soon. 

Tagged with: Nude, autumn, L'Oreal, beige, nails, fall

China Glaze On Safari - Jungle Queen

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By beautopia · July 17, 2012 · 0 Comments ·


China Glaze Jungle Queen 

Another one of my favorites from the new China Glaze On Safari collection, Jungle Queen is one you probably should at least take a look at. Besides the fact that it's a reasonably close Chanel Paradoxal dupe, it's just plain pretty. It's slightly darker than Paradoxal but it's still got the gorgeous clay-purple base and the elusive violet shimmer, plus the formula is just better. It's more pigmented than Paradoxal and it has just a bit more staying power... at least it did on me. I still LOVE Paradoxal, but I'll probably hang on to Jungle Queen. Because, you know, I'm nuts like that. 

PS I'm probably going to do another blog sale soon, I am absolutely out of room in all my drawer units and I am absolutely unwilling to buy another one, so I went through my polishes and will probably be putting the sale up this weekend. 

Click for more pics...

China Glaze On Safari - Elephant Walk

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By beautopia · July 1, 2012 · 0 Comments ·


China Glaze Elephant Walk 

Long time, no see! I have been away from the site for a little while due to a huge move. We recently relocated to the other side of the city... I honestly think cross-town moves are worse than longer-distance moves... It's sad but true that I've been completely preoccupied with getting the house in order for literally a month. The move absolutely played Hell with my nails, so my almond shape is gone for a little while so that I can grow out a couple breaks I sustained. Ick. I had taken a few photos of polishes and designs while my nails were still in the pointy-ish shape, so I will be posting those later this week, but they're older. Right this second, my poor, beleaguered nails are the short squares you see here... Anyway, on to the post!

From the upcoming On Safari collection from China Glaze is Elephant Walk. This s one of the more interesting shades from the collection in my opinion. It's billed as a grey, with no mention of the gorgeous green leanings it has. I was really pleased with this polish, the color is wonderful and unique, but the formula was great as well; great coverage. There's a bit of colorless ribbon-candy shimmer in there that just gives the polish more depth, you really don't notice it in most lights. The tealy-green tint makes this polish really special. It's similar to Essie Sew Psyched down to even the shimmer, but it's cooler than SP. It's almost like China Glaze Recycle and Essie School of Hard Rocks had a baby, but with some shimmer. As a bonus, it also matches one of my favorite handbags; my Hayden-Harnett Lorca in a color called Zeus, which is a green tinged stormy grey! I was wearing Elephant Walk this past week and I was thinking what a cool color it was and how I'd love to have a top or a bag that color and I realized I did! Very serendipitous and I can't wait to wear them together this Fall! 

Click for more photos and some comparisons...

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