Thursday, 28 February 2013

Flip Flop February Day 28: Recreate Your Favourite Day

Greetings All!

Well, another challenge over! 59 days of non-stop challenging, and I didn't even fall behind! I would like to say a quick thank you to Jilltastic Nail Design for organising this challenge, all the lovely ladies that have taken part and shown us all such beautiful nails each day, and to all of you who have read my posts, left such lovely comments, and generally just been completely awesome people! I've had a lot of fun, and I feel like I've learned a lot!

Next month I'll be taking things a little easier. I still have lots of fun ideas, and to be honest it'll be nice to be able to choose how to paint my nails lol! Untried Mountain is still growing (faster than I can polish lol) so there'll be some plain swatches as I try to work through them. I'll be taking part in some weekly challenges, which will give me more time to develop my ideas, and hopefully bring you better nails! And if any of you have any ideas, or would like to see something on the blog, just let me know! Some feedback would be awesome!

On to today's nails. The final nails! I had a hard time choosing my favourite day. There were so many I liked, and several I wanted to change or make better. In the end I chose Wings from Day 19, because I loved the colours, the gradient, the sparkle, and the design, and also I wanted to use the striping brush with my dominant hand, to see if I was any better! Last time I used my non-dominant hand. Here is a reminder of Day 19

It's good, but it's not great. My lines are too wobbly and uneven. I wanted to see if I could do better with my left hand.

I got another picture of the unpainted gradient! I know you don't really need to see this, but it's quite nice for me to be able to look back and see the progress I have made! And this one isn't half bad! Collection 2000 Dynasty, and W7 Purple, topped with Butter London Frilly Knickers. I love this polish it's so much like fairy dust in a bottle it's perfect!

So, this is a little better than the previous attempt. My lines are a bit more even and not as wobbly. Still not great though. And it doesn't have that spindly, fragile quality that the first one had. Still, overall I like it! I like both days!

So there we go. Officially all done! All you need to do now is remember to check out everyone else's recreations!

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Flip Flop February Day 27: Recreate Someone Elses

Greetings All!

It's the penultimate day of the challenge! I am both sad, and a little relieved. There's been a lot of hard work involved!

Today's nails were a really difficult choice. I spent ages looking through everyone's nails. So many talented ladies! And so many beautiful manicures. It was nearly impossible to pick one. I had narrowed it down to about 8, but in the end I chose THIS manicure from Galactic Lacquer. I hated my rainbow day manicures, but hers was lovely, so I decided to recreate it!

She used blue as a base colour, but I wanted something more neutral, so I went with Sally Hansen Crinoline. Obviously I also used different polishes for the rainbow dots (what were the chances of us having the same?!), but I used the same technique. These are obviously not as good as hers, but I still think they are really cute! I love the gradient effect, and how fun they are. I'm also really glad I didn't run out of room on my nail! I came close!

Remember to check out who has been inspiring everyone else, and stay tuned tomorrow to find out which day I enjoyed most!

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Flip Flop February Day 26: A Theme You Missed

Greetings All!

We are now so close to the end! I can't believe I haven't fallen behind! On Thursday I will have done a different 'challenge manicure' every day for the last 59 days! Wow that's a lot of nails!

In important (to me) news, please join me in welcoming back my right hand! She's been out of action for the last 2 weeks because I broke pretty much all the white bit off my middle finger. As you can see, it's still quite a bit shorter than my other nails, but I'll be evening that up over the next couple of weeks. I've decided it's long enough to work with though, it's grown really well! So my right hand will be working, with my left hand, as models, until the next catastrophic break!

Today's were originally going to be Outline nails, as I did really want to do them (I've only ever practiced them on nail wheels. However I ran out of time for day 21, and did dots instead of flames. I love flames on all sorts of things, including nails, so I had to do them. I can't believe I've only done these once before! When I did, I wore them for about 5 days though, so you know I liked them!

OK, I love these! They're so Rock! I went with a slightly different colour combination, but they still totally work. And hopefully it's obvious they're meant to be flames (it is to me, but then I painted them lol). The base is W7 Black, and I painted on the flames using three Sally Hansen HD Nail Color polishes I recently picked up (all £1 each, but all from different places!) The yellow is Lite, the green is Resolution (which is hilarious because you can barely see it!) and the blue is Spectrum. So far the blue is a clear winner for me - look at that sparkle! It's quite rare that I use 'matching' polishes for nail art, I usually go by the colour I need rather than brand, so it was nice to use these three together.

So, only the recreation days left to go! I've finishes someone elses's, now I just have to pick my favourite! Out of curiosity, what has been your favourite?

Remember to check out everyone else's lovely nails, and to see what theme they missed out on. Or, what their favourite polish is!

Monday, 25 February 2013

Nail Haul!

Greetings All!

I thought I would be a little mean, and show you what I've been buying in the last week. Personally I love and hate reading these posts from others, because I'm nosy, but it makes me want to shop! Anyway here's what I got.

Flip Flop February Day 25: YouTube Tutorial or Striping

Greetings All!

We are so close to the end of this challenge, I can't stand it! I already have some fun stuff planned for March, and I just spent over an hour trying to find someone's manicure to recreate. There's just too much choice! So many talented ladies.

Today's nails were an easy choice. I'm over video tutorials a bit. When I first started, they were helpful, but now I find them too long and unnecessary (like, I know I need to put a base colour on! I don't need to see you do it!). For most things I either make it up as I go along, or look at some pictures of the same technique. I only use a video tutorial if it's something I have no idea how to do! But I prefer a picture tutorial.

So striping it is! I tried using striping tape for the first time HERE for last months challenge. I did want to recreate this, because last time I wasn't completely happy with the result. I chickened out a little bit though. I figured I needed some practice at just getting the tape in the right place, without worrying about different colours! So I used the same colours as last time, but one on each nail.

I'm still a little wary of striping tape. It's so small and fiddly...these came out OK though. Not quite 100% clean lines, but not bad! And the placement is much better than last time (and easier!). My favourite nail is the blue one. That's what I wanted to do, but in different colours for each stripe. I need to be very precise though, as the lines get very close together! So this is OPI Alpine Snow, OPI Outrageous Neons mini collection, and an unnamed London Girl bright blue, which works very well as a neon over white. The black is W7 Black, for a change. I should really start using some other black polishes lol I have enough of them!

Next time I do striping I promise I'll do something different!

Remember to check out everyone else's nails!

Sunday, 24 February 2013

Sun-Tried-Day Some Naild' It Swatches

Greetings All!

Another Sunday, another untried! 2 this week. My untried collection was getting smaller! Unfortunately (yeah, right!) I have been buying more polishes! The untried area is a little messy at the moment lol. I did begin to sort it out, grouping all the polishes by brand (sooo many OPIs!) but I kind of got about halfway through, then other stuff came up. Next week I MUST get them organized. I have a lovely new Helmer and everything, but I want to keep them separate, or some of them may never get used!

On to today's nails. I can't believe I waited so long to post these! I got these back in January as part of my first order from Llarowe. They were in the sale, and I do love a bargain! As they were in the sale, they aren't brand new colours, I'm sure many of you will have seen them before (probably ages ago lol) but they are new to me! My indie collection is pretty small at the moment so I'm easily excited lol

First up is Tiger Puke. I bought this primarily on the basis of the name! Aww, poor tiger!

Flip Flop February Day 24: Tissue Paper or Rainbow

Greetings All!

Today has not been a good day, challenge wise (or rather Friday, when I spent nearly 12 hours painting my nails trying to get this right!). Both choices really just were not happening.

First, I couldn't get the tissue to the right size for my nails. It was like, too big, too big, now too small! Then I tried something like a cling film manicure, trying to dab the wet nail with the tissue paper. Another fail. So I thought that's OK, I can always just do some rainbow nails instead. First I tried a rainbow gradient skittle (not a million miles away from THIS manicure I did last month) but it failed. I got a picture though!

OK so it's not awful, but it wasn't really screaming 'rainbow' to me. And while topcoating, I transferred some red onto the yellow. Whatever, I really wasn't happy with it. So I thought of something else. A black and rainbow dotticure! Cool, yes? No. My thumb was cool. All the other nails failed sooo hard. So then I kept the thumb, and did another rainbow skittle.

So here we have: the one dotticure nail that worked (except you can't see the violet!), some freehanded 'stripes', a swirly abstract mess (a deliberate mess this time!), a ruffle nail (I had to go and look up the name of this. I'm painting things and I don't even know what they are. This is what is happening here), and finally I tried to draw a rainbow. Actually, this doesn't look quite as bad in the picture as it did in real life! I even gave up cleaning up, and just took a photo in case nothing else was better! I do like my thumb though. I wish that would have worked. Something with the spacing, and the size of the dots...I couldn't get it to work.

Finally I basically quit, and just did a rainbow glitter skittle. No skill, no inspiration, boring. Sorry!

Are you keeping up? I make that six attempts for this day. Six. So this day beat me. At this point, I'm kind of just glad I had something to post! Tomorrow and Tuesday are better though. I promise!

Now go and look at some much nicer nails painted by much saner people!

Saturday, 23 February 2013

Flip Flip February Day 23: Lightning or Bows

Greetings All! Are you having a good weekend?

Today I chose lightning, because I haven't done it before, and I probably would have just stamped some bows. I had a little image search on Google, and I watched THIS video on Youtube. It's a pretty easy technique, but I just wanted to make sure I would be doing it properly! Recently I've been kind of making techniques up as I go along (I always fear getting lost in the 'video vortex'), so I'm trying to be good and check my work lol.

Here they are:

I started with W7 Black. I then sponged on some OPI Alpine Snow for a pale base. I used Asda Lavender Fantasy, 17 Baby Blue, Sally Hansen Thinking of Blue and Barry M Plum to create a purple-y blue night sky. I then painted on some Butter London Frilly Knickers for some sparkle, then freehanded the lightning bolts with more Alpine Snow.

The lightning on my index finger is a bit straggly, but otherwise I really like these! They are very similar to Galaxy nails in technique, but then they are both kind of the sky so that's not really a surprise! I'm also happy with my colour choices. I almost went a completely different way with these, so I'm glad they worked out in the end! I think next time, I might do the night sky, and just have lightning on an accent nail. How cool would that look!

Remember to check out everyone else's lovely nails!

Friday, 22 February 2013

Comparison! Nails Inc Black Leather Effect vs Seventeen Black Rock Hard Nail Effect

Greetings All!

What?! I'm back AGAIN?! Yeah. I have a quick comparison for you, between Nails Inc Leather Effect in noho (black), and Seventeen Textured Polish in Black that I showed you yesterday. I know some people have been wondering whether or not they are dupes, and as the Nails Inc is around 5 times the price (although you do get those darling little skulls), I reckon a lot of people would be interested to know!

I know it sounds bad, but I kind of wanted to get this out of the way, as I really need to crack on with the Flip Flop February Challenge! This is my first comparison post though, and I must say it really does make me feel like a proper blogger! I don't have anything else in my collection that could be dupes (all I have is similar, which as we all know is completely different and totally necessary!) I get a little jealous of people who have an extensive enough collection to have dupes, and yet here I am comparing polishes that could both end up being massive in the UK this year!

Both bottles are 10ml of polish, both dry at approximately the same speed (pretty quickly!),  both give full coverage in 2 coats, and they are both easy to apply.

Flip Flop February Challenge Day 22: Plaid or Mustache

Greetings All!

Hope you're all looking forward to the weekend! This week has gone really quickly.

Today's choice is between plaid and mustaches. There was no way I was going to put a mustache anywhere near my nails! Too much of a hipster connotation (well, it was. Now you get them on everything, clothes, jewellery, because...?) so it had to be plaid, which I call tartan. I wasn't really looking forward to this one! I don't have a tartan stamp, so there was no cheat. I had to freehand it, with my non-dominant hand, and I was not looking forward to that at all! Still, I planned it out.

First step - tartan.Second step- red tartan ( I always think of red tartan, like on a box of shortbread lol). Then I thought, what about doing it in metallics? That might jazz it up a bit! So I started with 2 coats of OPI Die Another Day, a yummy metallic cherry red. So far, so good. Then I picked up my striping brush. This is the third time I've used it and I am just beginning to get the hang of it. I picked out Barry M Foil Effects in Silver and Gold for the stripes (?) and trusty old W7 Black. OK, I guess I should show you now.

Behold my wonky tartan! This is a bit of a mixed bag. On one hand, yes, the lines are all wonky. But on the other hand, they are straight lines, just at an angle, and I wasn't even sure I could do straight lines! I did the black last, and by that time I was much more confident, so the lines are nice and straight! I do kind of like it. It was my first go, with my 'wrong' hand (which is my right hand lol. That explains a lot, when right is wrong!) and I think it's kinda cute! I can see me recreating this one day (with a LOT more practice lol). Oh, and I matted it, which did defeat the purpose of it being metallic a little bit. Now it's more...satin-y!

Remember to check out everyone else's nails!

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Boots Seventeen Textured Polishes!!

Greetings All! This post is picture heavy!

Yesterday I mentioned I was going to look for the new Seventeen Textured Polishes. Fortunately my local Boots had a big display of them! I was planning on only getting red and grey, but they were buy one get one half price, so my mum very kindly got me all four! (Thanks mum!)

Somehow I managed to swatch them all yesterday, but by the time I had done that and edited all the pictures, it was late and I was too tired to post! So I'm bringing them to you today.

By the way, I have also filed my nails down a bit, in an effort to match them to my shortest nail on my other hand. Previously I had one hand with long nails and one with short! Now they are a little more even.

Grey, Black, Blue and Red (they were very imaginative with the titles! Still, you know what you're getting!). Each bottle is £3.99 for 10ml, but as I said, they are currently on offer.

A little bit of housekeeping. All swatches are 2 coats. They went on easily, dried quickly, and have a definite textured effect, both in look and feel. They look like normal polish when you paint them on, and the textured effect develops as they dry!

Flip Flop February Challenge Day 21: Flames or Dots

Greetings All!

 Quick post today. I wanted to do flames, but I kind of ran out of time and inspiration. So I'm cheating again and using this manicure, from just a couple of weeks ago! I had originally planned to do a month of manicures with untrieds in February, but I'm doing this challenge so it kind of got pushed to the side! It's also the first time I did this technique!

The, er, dotty, zippy, naily thing technique! I started with OPI Did It On'Em, 2 coats, then taped half my nail off and painted half with OPI Hong Kong Sunrise. Then I dotted each half with the opposite colour to 'interlock' them. I think it's really cute! Unfortunately you can see the line where I taped. I was hoping the dots would cover that. Next time I will definitely topcoat beforehand! Apart from that, endless colour combinations, cute effect, and easy!

There will be another post later. Stay tuned if you like textured polish! And you live in the UK. OR, you like to torture yourself!

Remember to have a look at everyone's manicures! I hope they have been less lazy than me!

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Flip Flop February Challenge Day 20: Flowers or V Gap

Greetings All!

Today I chose flowers over a v gap. V gap just didn't appeal to me at all, I'm not sure why. Also, I have quite a few flower manicures from last year just sitting there on my computer. Is that cheating? I haven't used them for anything else, and it's a perfect opportunity to use them! And I did do them myself. It's not cheating. It's fine!

Some of you may know I'm a big fan of rose nail art. I'm not very good at it, but I love it! I picked this manicure that I wore in December.

OK, so somehow I was actually better at drawing roses then than I am now! This is a base of OPI Samoan Sand. I matted it, then freehanded some stems and leaves with Revlon Matte Suede Emerald City. I actually wore it like that for a day, as it looked quite cool, almost like a tattoo. Then I painted on some roses with OPI The Thrill of Brazil, and did the details in OPI Got The Blues For Red. I really liked the matte background and the shiny roses. Unfortunately these pictures are pretty awful, but you get the idea!

On a slightly more personal (but still nail related!) note, today I'm pretty excited as there are 2 different brands of textured polishes (hopefully) available at Boots today! Barry M released their textured polishes, and the new Gellys in Superdrug last week, but I prefer shopping in Boots. Also, Boots brand 17 are releasing their textured polishes today! I REALLY hope they have them in my local one!

Barry M Gelly Nail Paint spring 2013 press release Lychee Dragonfruit Green Berry Papaya Dragon Fruit

Barry M Textured Nail Effect spring 2013 release Ridley Road Kingsland Road Station Road Atlantic Road
Both Pictures from Imagination in Colour
From the Gellys, I want Lychee, the nude one. The textured polishes I'm not too bothered about, as they are pastels, but I might pick one up!

Photo from Glitter & Gloss
These are what I'm more excited about! I think they are much better colours for the textured look. I want the red one and the grey one! Here's hoping they have them!

Remember to check out everyone else's lovely nails!

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Flip Flop February Challenge Day 19: Wings or Outline

Greetings All!

I really struggled with today's choice. I wanted to do butterfly wings, but I also had a really cool idea for an outline! In the end I decided whichever I picked, the other could be saved for the 'theme you missed' day. I chose butterfly wings. I have done these before, but I did a little Google image searching just to make sure I remembered them correctly! I found THIS picture over at Nail Art Gallery, and I decided I wanted to recreate it. The wings are drawn slightly differently, giving it a more delicate and (I think) more realistic look.

I started off with a gradient of Collection 2000 Dynasty, and W7 Purple.

My gradients are slowly improving!

I then used a coat of Butter London Frilly Knickers, to give it some sparkle (I told you it would be cropping up everywhere!). Now the tricky part. I started with my teeny paintbrush, but the lines were too thick. So I used a striping brush for like the second time ever! AND I used it on my 'wrong' hand (being lefthanded) So please bear that in mind!! I really should have thought this through...

Lol You can tell I'm ashamed because the pictures are smaller! 

I think these definitely would have been less of a hot mess if I could have drawn them with my left hand (I've suffered a terrible break on my right hand, so it's out of action) and I'm really not used to a striping brush! It flicked out a couple of times on the little finger. It did give thinner lines though! I will definitely be practicing more with it

So there you go. Pretty much a fail! I kind of like them though. I did a fairly decent gradient, and it's the first time I've done actual art with a striping brush (the first time was just playing around) and I think they're kind of cute. Rubbish, but kind of cute!

Remember to check out everyone's (no doubt better) manicures!! I hope no one used my outline idea!

Monday, 18 February 2013

Flip Flop February Challenge Day 18: Galaxy or Rhinestones

Greetings All!

Another week begins! After today, there are only 10 days left in this challenge!! What will I do next month?!

Back to today. I chose galaxy nails. I haven't done them in ages. These are another example of Beginner's Luck - the first time I did them, they turned out, like, perfect. I've practiced them since, but they've never been quite as good! Here, look, over the summer I even did a galaxy nail wheel (I used to practice a lot on nail wheels).

So I thought I should give them another go. I started with 2 coats of Innisfree Midnight Black. I love this polish! I've posted about it before HERE. It's almost like galaxy nails in a bottle - lots of holo glitter, and little bronze and gold hexes that could be planets lol. I couldn't resist another pic.

I then used a makeup sponge to dab on some OPI Alpine Snow in different areas on my nail. Now, the most difficult bit. Choosing colours that will work together. I suck at this. In the end I went for Sally Hansen Insta Dri in Emerald Express, Barry M Gelly in Plum, and Collection 2000 Candy Floss.

Once I had done that, I went back and sponged a little bit of Barry M SLE 2012 A (catchy!) which is a pale blue glittery foil. I'll show you it another day because it is pretty! But I still wasn't done. I added a coat of Butter London Frilly Knickers, a fine holographic glitter. You can really see it in the photos, which I'm happy about! (check out my thumb!) I dotted on a few stars in Alpine Snow, and I was done!

I'll be honest, I didn't love this on my nails. It just looked messy. However something magic happened in the pictures and it looks much better! I think it looks quite cool. The colours seem to work together, which I'm happy about, and Frilly Knickers is just gorgeous! I bought it in the January sales with a matching lipgloss (meh) for £5, and it's been sitting there untried ever since! It's like holographic dust, and it has (at least temporarily) curbed my lust for spectraflair a little. Prepare to see lots of manicures featuring this polish lol.

Tomorrow is either wings or outlines. The choice I have genuinely struggled with the most!

Remember to check out everyone else's lovely nails. I'm hoping to see lots of galaxies!

Sunday, 17 February 2013

Seven Days of Sally Hansen: Bewitched and Purple Pulse

Greetings All! This post is picture heavy!

Well,what a week it's been! Ten polishes in seven days, a smaller untried pile, and a lot of beautiful shades! Today I have two colours from Fragrance Direct to show you. As ever there is a plain swatch and some nail art!

First up is Bewitched. This is quite different to the other shades I have shown you - it's a rich, deep, aubergine colour that almost went on in one coat. It's dark and vampy and sumptuous. Here, take a look!

Flip Flop February Challenge Day 17: Delicate Print or Newspaper

Greetings All!

Another weekend nearly over! As I have mentioned before, I get Tuesdays and Wednesdays off work, So Monday has started to feel like Friday. Which is actually deeply, deeply sad!

On to the nails. I've never been interested in the newspaper print technique. Maybe I should have tried it because I never have, but really it just does nothing for me so it was never really an option! I went for delicate print. I originally intended to do feathers, but I couldn't find my teeny nail art brush and I was using a very pale base colour, so I had to choose something else. I couldn't decide, so I cheated a little and went for stamping!

Today is the seventh day of my 'Seven Days of Sally Hansen', and so the base colour for this manicure is Sally Hansen Salon Manicure in Green Tea. It's a lovely colour, and a great base for nail art! Unfortunately, I didn't take any pictures of it plain! As you can see, it's a pale, muted mint green (a lot of these Sally Hansen's are muted down, and I for one am loving it! I think it's more elegant than a brighter shade). These pictures are 2 coats, and great formula as always!

Green Tea is quite a delicate colour to start with, so I felt I had a bit of freedom with the stamping. I chose GA29, a swirly, flowery, wallpapery stamp, and Barry M Gold Foil. It's a little bit subtle (wait, not subtle. Delicate!) but I think it fits the theme pretty well. Soon I am going to run out of this style of stamp! I don't know what I'll do then! (I do know. I'll totally just buy more!)

Remember to check out everyone else's nails!

Stay tuned tonight for the season finale of 'Seven Days...' *dramatic music*