Monday, April 28, 2014

6:00 AM

What's in a finish? Specialty Polish

     Today for the whats in a finish series we take a look at specialty polishes. There are many different types of specialty polishes but the most common are Crackle, Magnetic, and Spotted. While these seem to be passing trends, you still see them pop up every now and then.

     Let's start off by taking a look at the crackle finish. Crackle nail polish is a layering polish that cracks to create different patterns. This is the most user-friendly of the 3 polishes we will be looking at today. The polish cracks all on its own without the assistance of anything else, and from my limited experience with it the thickness of the coat doesn't play a factor.

     Now let's take a closer look at the Magnetic Polish. Magnetic nail polish doesn't require anything underneath for it to work, but I always recommend a base coat. You then put down one layer of the polish but on the 2nd coat you hold a magnet (usually provided in the cap) over the polish for 10 seconds and a pattern is created in lighter and darker parts on the nail.


     It's no secret that there are iron shavings in magnetic polish. That's why it responds to the magnet. But what isn't clear is why the nail polish forms a distinct striped pattern. Most of us have seen metal shavings hanging from the ends of magnets in long 'beards,' so it seems like the whole coat of polish should just pull to a peak right under the magnet. It doesn't because the magnet in the jar isn't just an 'end.'  but both poles going to work on the shavings.

     While not overly complicated to apply, magnetic polish does have a little bit of a learning curve to it. Especially with how long to hold the magnet over the polish, or how close to get to the nail.

     Last but not least we have the Spotted finish. Both OPI and Fing'rs have come out with this type of specialty polish. Just like the crackle finish, the spotted finish is a layering polish. This is probably the hardest finish to work with for most people. It requires an extremely thin layer to be placed over your base color. I actually had huge success the first time I used the Fing'rs Get Spotted polish, but I didn't follow the directions. You can see what I mean by checking out my previous post.

Fing'rs Spotted
Fing'rs Get spotted over OPI Die Another Day
     There are other types of specialty polish out there also. I know Barry M has one that is very similar to the crackle finish. I'm sure there are more, but these are the ones that I am familiar with. If you know of another one I'd love to hear about it in the comments.

     I hope you have enjoyed this post, and found it helpful in some way. Thanks for stopping by and Happy Polishing!

Friday, April 25, 2014

6:00 AM

Sinful Colors- Tidal Wave

     Today I'm sharing with you a nail polish that has been patiently waiting in my stash for almost a year! Sinful Colors Tidal Wave is part of the Pool Side Collection, summer 2013. Why I let this pretty pale Robin's egg blue polish sit neglected for so long I have no idea.


     Oh wait, I know why. The formula is kind of iffy. I didn't have as many problems with it as other bloggers seemed to. I've read that people had problems with it being running and goopy at the same time. That it would move around on the nail during application, and that it just all around sucked. I didn't have quite those issues but my bottle was pretty runny and I was surprised at how sheer this polish is. I don't know if I had fewer issues because my polish was older, or because I tend to apply thicker coats than most, but I'm glad that I didn't have as many problems.

Tidal Wave. 3 coats plus top coat
     The first 2 coats were on the patchy side, but everything evened out after the 3rd. Tidal wave dries to a nice semi-gloss finish.  I wouldn't say that the formula was so bad that I'd never use it again, but it was more work than I'm used to doing with nail polish.

     I do really like the color. It seems to have just the right amount a blue for me, and it made a great base for some failed nail art recently.  I have a few other polishes from this collection that I have yet to use. I  hope they don't have the same application issues that this one did. I should have posts up on those in the coming weeks.

     Do you have this polish in your collection? Did you have the same issues with it being spotty or goopy? Id love to hear your feedback. As always thanks for stopping by and Happy Polishing!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

6:00 AM

Orly Dare to Bare

     Today I have for you a quick post on Orly Dare to Bare from the Blush Spring Collection 2014. Dare to Bare is a soft, nude that is described as taupe beige from Orly, but looks pinkish beige on me. For those of you still on the hunt for the perfect nude color, I would recommend giving this one a try.


     Application of Dare to Bare is easy with its smooth formula, cream finish, and no streaking. Here I've shown Dare to Bare here in 2 coats without topcoat. As you can see I still have a faint VNL after 2 coats. I would assume that would be covered with the application of a 3rd coat, but didn't try it to be sure.

     Well, that's all I have for you today. Thanks for stopping by and Happy Polishing!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

12:34 PM

Spring Renewal Nail Art Challenge Day 4: Free Style

     Happy Easter everyone!  I've got a quick post for you today so I can go celebrate with my family. It's the last day of the Spring Renewal Nail Art Challenge. Like many of the challenges I've participated in the last day is freestyle. I decided to go back to the Pastel prompt and do Pastel Galaxy nails. This was one of the techniques I was seriously considering for day 2 of the challenge.

     I actually really like how this turned out and I got a ton of compliments at my softball practice yesterday on them. I hope you enjoy them just as much.


     I went back to my sinful colors polishes for this manicure. I know I got a little heavy handed with the sponging but I still like the finished results. Especially my ring finger! I'm glad I could end this challenge on a high note for myself and look forward to the next challenge the group puts together. Right now I need to get back and make sure my kids aren't eating too much of their Easter Candy.

     Thanks for stopping by and Happy Polishing!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

2:16 PM

Spring Renewal Nail Art Challenge Day 3: Spring Flowers

   Today is day 3 of the challenge and the theme is Spring flowers. I thought I'd take this opportunity to try out a few different techniques and see what I could come up with. While yesterday was a nail art triumph today is a different story. What can I say, you win some, you lose some.

     I started out with a base of Sinful Colors Tidal Wave. The pretty Robin's egg blue reminded me of a clear sky on a fresh spring day.


      Next came time for the flowers. I attempted the one stroke flower technique on 2 of my nails and I actually like those the best. For my ring finger, I used a new nail art brush and attempted to make flowers with individual petals. Those are a bit of a fail but were a great learning experience. And I don't really want to talk about my pinkie. I consider it the bad seed of this manicure.

     I have decided to title the manicure as "The learning experience". I learned that even though I absolutely love floral manicures they don't exactly love me back. I learned that I have a hard time making the correct angels with my brush, and I need to take my time. I also learned that I can show improvement within one manicure. My pointer finger was the last one I did and I like it the best.

    So enough of my debacle, let's see what the others have come up with for today.

Friday, April 18, 2014

11:22 AM

Spring Renewal Nail Art Challenge Day 2: Pastels

     It's day 2 of the Spring Renewal Nail Art Challenge and today's theme is Pastels. I actually had a hard time coming up with what I wanted to do for today. Every time I decided on an idea I second guessed myself and changed my mind. I wanted to do something very different from what I usually do. Of course, a gradient was the first thing that popped into my mind, and that would have been really pretty. But let's face it, I do a LOT of gradients. Leopard print, random dots, stripes, and some stamping all crossed my mind. I finally decided on the Sugar Spun technique.

     I've wanted to try one of these manicures for some time but have held off because of the mess it can make. But challenges are for pushing yourself to try something new so I jumped in head first. I started with another skittles manicure as my base using all Sinful Colors polishes. Tidal Wave (blue) Song of Summer (green) Unicorn (yellow) and Sweet Tooth (purple).

     I was having a hard time getting the nail polish to be stringy so I could wrap it around my finger so I ended up just dragging big drops across my nails with a dotting tool. Not the true way to do a sugar-spun manicure I know but I got very similar results with much less mess. Hooray for small miracles right!

     Finally, I have a manicure to share in a challenge that I actually really like the final results. Usually I so busy rushing to get it done that I end up with a creation that I'm almost a little embarrassed to share. Not this time!!! I ended up wearing this for the entire day yesterday because I liked it so much and didn't want to take it off right away. Yep, that means I walked around with 4 fingers painted and the rest naked. That's starting to be a trend with us nail bloggers right?

     Well as much as I'd like you to sit here and look at my manicure all day long I really should share with you what everyone else came up with for day 2. Thanks for stopping by, don't forget to check back tomorrow for Spring Flowers Day. Happy Polishing!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

6:00 AM

Spring Renewal Nail Art Challenge Day 1: Easter Egg Nails

    It's time for another nail art challenge hosted by the Challenge Your Nail Art group on Facebook. Anyone and everyone are welcome to join the group, do all or parts of the challenges, and just overall have a good time!

     The theme for this first day is Easter Eggs. I decided to go with another completely freehanded nail art look again. I need to really work on this part of my nail art and I guess challenges are the place to do that for me. Even if that means sharing my less than stellar manicures with you, although I'm starting to see some slight improvement. Now let's get to the manicure, shall we?


     I started off with a skittles manicure as my base using all Rimmel polishes. Colors are from pointer to pinky: Instyle Coral, Green Eyed Monster, Purple Reign and, Funtime Fuscia. I actually have Funtime Fuscia on my toes right now and I love it. It's such a happy color to help welcome in spring. It makes my toes want to dance every time I look at it.

     Now once I got the base colors for this manicure done that's about where my plan ended too. I knew I wanted to add some stripes and dots but that was about it. The finished product isn't exactly what I had envisioned but it's still not too bad.

     I like how bright my nails ended up being, and the fact that each line isn't perfect reminds me of the eggs I used to dye as a child. I used a few of my kiss striping polishes to make the details on each egg, including the dots or dashes, however, you want to look at them. I finished the entire manicure off with a coat of Seche Vite.

     I hope you stop back tomorrow to see what ideas I came up with for pastel day. In the meantime why not check out what the other participants came up with for their Easter Eggs.

Friday, April 11, 2014

10:15 PM

Studio Grear CC Cream

     Today I have the opportunity to share with you a new  Hydrating CC Cream from Studio Gear Cosmetics.
"Micro encapsulated pigments deliver a fresh dose of color that adapts to your own skin tone creating the most natural looking coverage. This lightweight, oil free cream is infused with Hydra-Extend technology that provides up to 72 hours of continuous hydration. Skin nourishing and brightening ingredients help to correct and maintain a youthful complexion."

     This Hydrating CC Cream is available in 3 shades; Linen, Natural and, Wheat. I have a very fair complexion thanks to my red-headed father and Irish heritage so I went with Linen. My first thought before the application was that I somehow had chosen a shade that was too light for me. Which was shocking given my ghostly pallor, but the cream is almost white to start off with.


     Once I started the application process I realized that I had nothing to worry about. The CC Cream really does adapt to match your skin tone, in fact, I think it even gave me just a hint of "color". Which I could really use right after the winter months.  To show you what I mean let's start with an awkward before photo. This is a big old close up of my naked face to show that I have a few freckles and *gasp* some wrinkles starting to form.

     I wanted to include a profile shot too because it gives a better representation of my uneven skin tone.

     Normally I wouldn't go around pointing out all of the "character" that my face has, but I was curious to see what the CC Cream would do for my complexion. I  also want to make sure to draw attention to some of the things it was able to correct no matter how small and unnoticeable they are to everyone except me.   So in this image, you will see that I have a dark spot in the corner of my eye. I'm starting to get a few lines around my eyes. I have some redness around my cheekbone area and a few sparsely scattered pale freckles which seem to intensify in the summer months. Would you have noticed all that if I hadn't pointed it out?

     Well enough of that, now time for the results. In this next image, you can start to get an idea of how this product worked. The redness on my cheeks is almost nonexistent and I think I look slightly younger.  My skin has a softer appearance, without that caked on makeup look.

     In this profile image, you can get a better idea of my results. Those freckles are completely gone, my skin looks soft and has a healthy look to it. The lines under my eye are gone. I still have the dark spot in the corner of my eye, but it's lighted slightly. (I have yet to find a product that will conceal that completely.)

      I wanted to include a few side by side pictures so it was easier for you to compare the before and afters.

     Over all I'd say this product works very well. It blended nicely, didn't feel heavy on my skin, and still had a nice "dewy" look  hours after application. I did only wear it for 5 hours so I can't comment on the 72 hour wear time. The only down side for me  personally was that I noticed a slight "make-up" scent for the first hour I was wearing it. Kind of a powdery, talcum scent that a lot of foundations seem to have. The foundation that I normally wear has no scent which is why I noticed this one.

     Studio Gear Cosmetics can be found in the beauty departments of Bloomingdales, Macy's, Dillard's, HSN and ULTA, and also in the everyday woman's makeup bag. Studio Gear has also graciously allowed me to share with you a discount code for 10% off of  your shopping cart at Please use code bloggercc to redeem.

     What did you think of my results? Is this a product you'd like to try for yourself? I'd love to hear your thoughts. Thanks for stopping by and Happy Polishing!

* This is a sponsored post, the items were sent to me for my honest review. All opinions and photos are my own.*
6:00 AM

Darling Diva Polish - Muscle Car Collection

     *Press Sample*
     Today I'm going to share with you 2 polishes from the Darling Diva Muscle Car Collection. Lady Boss, a stunningly deep magenta/purple holographic glitter and Charger a multifaceted orange holographic glitter. Both polishes can be purchased from their Big Cartel store and run $8 for a 15ml bottle.

     First up is Lady Boss. I used 2 coats of Lady Boss on its own. The application was pretty smooth for a glitter polish. The first picture is taken in my lightbox and shown without top coat


     As you can see there is a bit of a gritty texture and a semi-matte finish. The next picture was taken outside in natural light and again without top coat.


     And a quick Macro shot to show some of the depth this polish has as well as the texture.


     If you're not a fan of the rough texture, one quick layer of top coat will smooth everything out nicely. I think the top coat also helped to highlight the inner beauty that this polish has.

     Overall I really like Lady Boss. I would, however, recommend applying a third coat to get full opacity and a little more glitter coverage.

      And now for some pictures of Charger. Again I applied 2 coats, shown first is without top coat and taken in my lightbox.


     Like Lady Boss, Charger has a slight texture to it when it dries, but seems to have just a wee bit more shine to it. You can see a little more of that shine in the next photo which was taken outdoors.


     And a closer look at Charger without top coat.

      I like the way the light plays off the glitters, giving the appearance of gold and brown. If you're not a fan of the rougher texture, one coat of top coat will take care of that.


     I am a sucker for these burnt orange or coppery colors and Charger is up there with a few of my favorites. Just like Lady Boss, I would recommend adding that third coat for full opacity and better glitter coverage.

     Do you have a favorite polish from this collection that I should check out? Thanks for stopping by, and Happy Polishing!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

6:00 AM

Younique Pigments

     *Press Sample*

     I'm Back!!!! And today I have another makeup post to share with you. I know, this is primarily a nail polish blog but I like to branch out every once in a while. I hope you enjoy these posts as much as I enjoy experimenting with the products.

     A little while ago Vanessa a Younique Independent Presenter was looking for people to try out the mineral pigments the Younique offers. I jumped at the chance. If you read my last make-up review you know that I don't usually wear makeup but have recently started experimenting with it. I figured anything that would make the application process easier for me would be something worth trying out.

     After looking at Vanessa's site I decided to try out 3 pigments; Regal (purple), Devious (grey), and Curious (white).
Samples of Younique Pigments
     Younique products are all 100% naturally based, hypoallergenic, paraben free and cruelty-free as well. The mineral pigments do not have any talc which means you'll have; no creasing during wear, longer wear time, and brighter richer pigmentation in the colors.

      I have to admit I never thought I'd wear purple eyeshadow. Give me neutral browns and I'm a happy girl. After all, my mom always told me the best way to wear make-up was to look like you weren't wearing any. I still think that's a good philosophy for an everyday look, but I want to be able to have fun with my make up from time to time.


     I actually had a lot of fun playing around with these, and they weren't kidding about having bright, rich pigmentation. You don't need very much pigment on your brush to get a pop of color on your lid. I actually only used the pigment that was stuck to the lid of the container. I found the pigments very easy to work with and they blended extremely well. The main issue I've always had with my eyeshadow was getting them to show up as vibrantly and I wanted, without having a harsh line between colors. While I still have some learning to do when it comes to eye makeup I'm very pleased with how this turned out.

     As you can see I'm still not comfortable taking pictures of my own face, but I'm getting better. This is my completed look and I couldn't be happier. I finally have a semi-dramatic eye look, that doesn't look clownish!

     Younique pigments can be purchased from Vanessa's site and will run you $10 per pigment (1.1g). Or you can do  4 pack for $35. If I almost lost you with that price, trust me I think it's worth it, and I am the mayor of Cheapsville when it comes to make-up. Because you don't need to use very much with each application these pigments will last you a very long time. Remember that first picture in this post, and the amount in each container? Well, my containers look pretty much as full now as they did when I got them.
     Also for the month of April, Vanessa has offered my readers a 15% discount on any order. All you have to do is like her Face Book page and send her a message to redeem it. Just a little heads up, currently Regal and Curious are out of stock but should be back in stock next week.

     I hope you have enjoyed this post. It's good to be back blogging again. If you have any questions about these products or any products that Younique offers please don't hesitate to contact Vanessa. She it such a sweetheart to work with, and was very prompt in responding to any and all of my questions. Thanks for stopping by!


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