It's official, I'm obsessed with leopard. It shouldn't be news to you... I am also in love with Migi Nail Art Pens. I received a sample of the black and white pen, and will review it soon, but I've been using the hell out of it. I plan to purchase a couple sets soon. Anyway, they happen to make doing leopard print really fast and easy so I did a couple more leopard designs this past week.
The first one is a base of Barielle Cowl of the Wild and then dots of OPI Who the Shrek Are You? I loved this combo so much. The neutral creamy brown really popped the citron color.
The second one is a french tip of China Glaze Classic Camel, then dots with China Glaze Goin' My Way (These are both from Vintage Vixens)
Both designs are pretty simple and standard, especially with the Migi pen. Not much copy this time guys because I'm so incredibly busy getting ready for the wedding on Sunday. I have a few posts saved and though it's only a couple random swatches and one how-to video I hope it doesn't bore you till I get back in town next week. I probably won't be available to answer comments or emails for the next few days, but I promise I'll respond to everyone as soon as I get back :D Thanks for reading, guys!
Here's a nail design I did last week. Another leopard, yes, I can hear you through the computer... I can't help it, I love leopard and there are so many awesome color combinations I'm dying to do with it. This particular one was done with two polishes my awesome swap buddy Michelle sent me. They were the first I used from this latest swap package... They're from H&M and they're called Blue Sky and Grey Sky and I love them. They're both surprisingly unique! The blue sort of reminds me of OPI Suzi Says Feng Shui but a little lighter perhaps. The grey is a light warm grey with shimmer! I thought of doing a sky to match the names but decided that was too predictable, so went with the less predictable (LULZ) leopard. What do you think? I used the blue to dot the print on the grey nails and vice versa... I liked it.
Sorry I've been MIA for a few days... I haven't really mentioned it on the blog, but I'm getting married in two weeks! We've been so busy that I haven't had a lot of time for nail-related stuff. Besides there being a million wedding things to do, the whole family has been sick on and off for a few weeks, our kiddo has had lots of soccer stuff going on and there just seems to be tons and tons of stuff to do. I'm also a worrier. Something is wrong if I don't have something to worry about, but luckily there's plenty to be anxious about in the near future... Just for a quick FYI if you're interested, my fiancé and I have been together for almost 9 years (on and off, lol) and we have a 6-year-old little girl, and we're finally ready to tie the knot. It's going to be a lot of fun and I promise to post some photos after I get them. So think about me and wish me luck on 10-10-10!
Anyway, here's a manicure I did tonight because I just felt it was time to some fun nail art after this hellish week. I used an awesome Essence polish from the Surfer Girl collection as the base. It was sent to me in a swap from the lovely Michelle from The Lacquer Files (one of a ton of amazing polishes she sent that I'll be sharing with you over the next couple weeks). Over it I did dot's in varying colors:
I used a small dotting tool and applied the dots diagonally all the way up. It's far from perfect and I think it looks more graduated and pretty in person, but oh well. I love the look of it on grey and how it almost looks textured. I've been wanting to do a gradation manicure, but I figured I'd give this a try first. Honestly I'm really afraid of failure on the straight-up gradation... I'm sort of confused on how to do it to be honest. I've tried it with a sponge and didn't love it. Perhaps I need to use different polishes or try another method. Have you ever tried a gradation on your nails? What's you favorite gradation method?
I don't always have the energy or creative juices to take a stock Konad design and make it something unique. Hell, most of my "designs" are straight up Konad patterns. You can play with base colors and embellishments, but honestly I'm not the most creative when it comes to Konad; it just looks so cool by itself that you hate to mess with it. I'm using plate m73 here which has a full-nail plate with these lines of music and is topped off by a piano keyboard. I've always liked that pattern but the piano on the same nail takes something away in my opinion, so I took the opportunity of having teeny nubbins to use just the lines of music. I applied the pattern with Konad Special Polish in Black (my new jam) over Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Lavender Cloud because over straight-up white it was a little stark and boring. The slightly off shade of Lavender Cloud made it a lot more wearable. I can't believe I'd never worn the music notes pattern before, so I'm glad I at least gave it a try. I tend to keep using my favorite plates over and over, and I'm trying to branch out and use the others more.
This amazing Catrice polish is one I got from the wonderful Michelle over at The Lacquer Files. She has officially made me into a Catriceophile. This is such a perfect polish, because I love grey, I love Catrice, and I'm also a long-time Anglophile, so the mention of London makes it a must-have for me. I've worn this one before but only realized recently I never posted about it. It's a slightly deep cool grey with beautiful drizzles of silver shimmer that hide and then pop out when light hits them. I wore this while I was feeling a little sick, so then I added some white clouds with Wet n Wild French White Tip and a dotting tool to denote my "under the weather" status. I thought the look was cute, but if I had to do it again, I'd use a lighter grey for the clouds, like Sally HansenWet Cement, and then maybe highlight with white, and lowlight with a darker grey. Overall, I liked it though. The Catrice polish is standard for the brand; super pigmented, smooth, wears well, brush is awesome. Everything I want in a polish, Catrice is, except the color range which is not exactly small, but it's no China Glaze in that respect.
Here's another straight-from-the-plate Konad design I did recently. I've a bad habit of using a few of my Konad plates and ignoring others, so I'm challenging myself to use them more, just to get some use out of them. It's so easy and requires no creativity really, but I like looking at the design/color combos other people come up with for Konad, so I figured I'd post it. This one is OPI Jade is the New Black from the Hong Kong collection with bamboo from plate m66 stamped on randomly in Black special polish. This is a really straight-forward design that takes no creativity at all, but looks super cool, and the color and design were made for each other, in my opinion. On a side note, what the hell is going on with my bottle of JITNB? It's going all yellow at the bottom. Do not like. Luckily it applies the same, I can't believe it's already doing that, it just came out a couple months ago. Weirdness.
OPI Canberra't Without You is from the Australia Collection, which I believe was from Spring/Summer 2007 has been sitting in a drawer in my house since it first came out. I bought it, swatched it, marveled at it's beautiful shards of glitter in the peachy nude base then promptly forgot about it. Three years later I sat here wanting to re-create the Lace Manicure again, (check out my first attempt here), so I kept an open mind and started rifling through my drawers for the perfect nude base. By itself it's not the most exciting color, but every girl needs a polish in her stash that matches her skintone. They just come in handy! Canberra't is my perfect nude, and I used it here as a base for two nail looks that are really sexy and appropriate for Fall.
This time around, armed with a better base color and an actual Konad Special Polish in black to make the designs more crisp, I thought I'd have a better time of things. It worked a lot better, but I have to say I'm really looking forward to when my nails grow back out from my surprise nubbin attack this week to try it again. Long, lacy nails sounds hot.
While hordes of fashion and beauty editors swarm the tents in NYC this week, I'm sitting in front of my computer sick as hell, but living vicariously through those lucky soldiers. I love reading the tweets and blog posts of the beauty bloggers who are there, and wait with bated breath to see what awesome nail designs and trends filter through to us on the interwebz. Here are a couple awesome nail looks created by OPI for the Zac Posen Z Spoke show. We all know that not only is nail polish huge right now, nail art is sweeping through fashion show tents and living rooms in middle America like an epidemic, and I for one love it. The photo above is leopard print on multi-colored nails. Sounds sort of like my manicure from two days ago, haha. The colors look to be from the Shrek Collection so there's a neat gradient of light blue, yellow, and Shrek green. Awesome!
There's also a cool design OPI did for this show that looks like a sort of deconstructed color-blocking or maybe like an impressionist flower painting. Either way it's awesome. Check it out:
I really wanted something simple for today's manicure, but something happy, too. I'm currently sick as a dog with pneumonia. I was pretty sick last week, then I started to feel better. Then I went shopping for my wedding gown with my mom (!!! so fun !!!) and I had a bit of a relapse and have been trying to claw my way back out since. I'm stuck at home taking long breaks between short bouts of housework and other stuff. I feel pathetic, haha. So I decided to cover up my naked (except for Perfect Formula Gel Coat) nails (naked? gasp!) with some fun nail art to cheer me up.
Ever since last week's Cupcakes and Zebras manicure, I've been on a candy-colored nail art streak. I loved the nails with two base shades especially in that one so I tried a new color combo and design with today's manicure. I know I've done leopard a lot lately, but it's so fun. I am a child of the 80s and it will never leave me, so I might as well embrace it. For this manicure I used Color Club Pucci-licious, aka my new favorite purple, along with Milani Neon Fresh Teal and one of my favorite hot pinks ever, OPI DC Cherry Blossom. With these polishes along with konad plate m57 and konad special polish in black I did this incredibly simple design. You can also freehand the leopard, but I feel like Konad is easier and more consistent, plus I like getting use out of my Konad set since I've got such an investment in it by this point.
Don't feel you have to have a Konad set to do this, a cheap black nail art pen, or black polish and a toothpick will get the job done just as well. The coolest part of the manicure is that some nails are only purple, or only teal, but some are both. I basically chose the nails randomly but I found afterward that there was a bit of a pattern, so go figure. They still look random to me, and I like it. I just used a dotting tool to add the pink to some of the spots after I added the leopard print. Everything is topped with a coat of my favorite, Seche Vite. As a side note, I used the Perfect Formula Gel Coat in lieu of a base coat and have been using it for a few weeks here, and I'm very impressed, so I'll be reviewing that soon. For now I'll say it makes a great stand-alone treatment as well as base coat.