Monday, 29 April 2013

University Challenge Nails

Greetings All!

Tonight is the final of University Challenge, which is a TV programme I love. LOVE. I've watched it for years, I take it quite seriously (to the point where I play along, and keep a score!), and it's one of my favourite things on TV If you are not familiar with it, the Wikipedia link is HERE, but it's basically a quiz show featuring university students, and it's a little more challenging than your average TV quiz!

Anyway, tonight is the final, between University College, London, and the University of Manchester, and it's very exciting (to me!), but also sad, because it won't be back on until July :(

I love when people do nerdy, obscure, fanatic nail art - most of the time I have no idea what the reference is! But I still think it's wonderful. And sometimes I'll discover a new TV show, or film or something because of it (I started watching Parks and Recreation after seeing THESE nails on Chalkboard Nails!). So I decided to do my own little nail tribute to University Challenge. Maybe there's only a few people out there that will 'get' this, but I don't care!

I need the pencils for when I'm keeping score!

Unfortunately I can't find a video of the opening titles anywhere, which is what these are based on! But here is the logo

(from, who appears to be a much bigger UC geek than me! There had to be one out there lol)

As you can see, the theme is purple and gold.

(from, with University Challenge legend Alex Guttenplan)

The set design is actually blue, but hopefully you can sort of see what I was going for?

My base colour is Sally Hansen Good To Grape, and I stamped with Barry M Gelly in Plum, and Barry M Gold Foil, and stamping plates BM201, BM316, BM319, CH13, GA29 and GA36. I'm super happy with the result! Now I can watch the final proudly displaying my love for this show!

Sunday, 28 April 2013

Sun-Tried-Day: Missha Dazzling and Gemstone Glitters

Greetings All!

So, I made a Facebook page! I've been putting it off for a while, mostly because I'm too lazy to be posting my pictures all over the internet! I would be very honoured if you 'liked' my page HERE - there's nothing on it yet! But there will be soon lol.

For today's Sun-Tried-Day, I've decided to give you a break from Sally Hansen, and show you some of the glitters I got in my latest Korean nail haul (I'm already planning another for next month!)

Missha is a brand that, like many brands that aren't immediately available to me, I had never heard of. They do a pretty range of glitter polishes that look quite unusual and exciting, and they cost me about £3.50 each, so they are fairly purse-friendly.

I bought two from the Dazzling collection (HERE), and two from the Gemstone collection (HERE), and I'm going to show you the Dazzling ones first. Unfortunately these are numbered instead of named, and a quick search on the internet didn't reveal any names for them.

Dazzling 01 is a mix of blue and red hexes, squares, bars and microglitter. I put 2 coats over Sally Hansen Ivory Skull (she still makes an appearance! lol)

This was actually a surprise winner for me! I say I hate bar glitter, and yet I keep buying and wearing it! I like the different size hexes, and the microglitter really helps to tie it all together. It's quite cute and unusual, and I like the colours together.

Dazzling 06 is basically the same polish, but in matte black and white. This is 2ish coats over Sally Hansen Right Said Red.

I'm loving black and white glitter at the moment, but I really don't want to pay £5 for a tiny little 5ml bottle of L'Oreal Confetti, so I've been trawling all over looking for substitutes. This will do for now! I like the bigger white hexes, and the white microglitter (although over red it looks rather Christmassy!), Luckily the bar glitter was fairly well behaved, and didn't stick out all over my nails.

Application with both was pretty good, a bit 'dabby' but not too bad. The worst thing about them was the smell. They have quite a mentholy smell, fairly strong and not altogether pleasant. Even with topcoat, you could still smell them the next day, which I found quite unusual. They are also in a strangely shaped bottle, which, like an idiot, I forgot to take a picture of! Basically they are sort of concave at the back, so you don't get as much polish as you think you are going to. Cheeky!

The Gemstone collection does have names (hooray!), unsurprisingly they are named after gemstones. This collection doesn't have the same strong smell as the Dazzling ones, which I was happy about!

Amethyst is a purple tinted base, pale enough so that you definitely need undies, but purple enough that they have to be purple, with blue, pink, magenta and indigo hexes, and holographic stars. This is 3 coats over NYC Prince Street.

Application with both of these was pretty horrible - I had to 'dab only' - any brush strokes just removed all the glitter, the hexes all clumped around the stars, and I had to do quite a bit of fishing to get any glitter from the thin base. Disappointing! I think they would look nicer over another colour, but the tinted base makes that difficult, especially when dabbing it on.

Peridot is a mix of gold, green and orange hexes, and large green hexes. This is 2 'coats' over OPI Jade is The New Black.

Again, application was an uphill struggle, and the sickly yellow-green base is fairly horrible! It's such a shame - in the bottle they both look so gorgeous, and they could have been so amazing - I love the big green hexes in this one. In a better quality, thicker, clear base, I would be ordering you to go and buy these! As things stand, I don't think I'll be ordering any more Missha polishes any time soon, although I will be wearing the Dazzling ones again.

You can visit the eBay shop where I got these HERE, they have a huge selection of polishes, great prices, free shipping and excellent customer service!

Saturday, 27 April 2013

Fast Food Nails - Pizza

Greetings All!

So, Laura over at She Who Does Nails is hosting a new challenge. There is a different theme for each week,  and you can post your nails at any point during the week. If you want to join in, you can do HERE. There's some really good themes coming up! I love the relaxed approach because it means you can fit it in when you want, but it also means I keep forgetting about it! The themes are also quite broad, which I think makes it easier to come up with ideas. The theme for this week is fast food, and I have chosen to do pizza nails, although I don't really like pizza!

I especially don't like pizza with peppers and mushrooms, which is what this is supposed to be! But hey, I don't have to eat it.

I used Sally Hansen Yellow Kitty, W7 Black, Boots 17 Tigers Eye, OPI The Thrill of Brazil and Jade Is The New Black, and Asda Witchcraft.

Be sure to check out everyone else's fast food nails (although not on an empty stomach!)

Etude House Ice Cream Nails

Greetings All!

I hope you are all having a good weekend! Today I have some swatches from my latest Korean nail haul, some pretty little ice cream colours. I will confess, I did buy these because the bottles are so cute! I have the glitters (HERE), and I discovered they also have a range of cremes (HERE), three of which I will show you now!

First up a bit of housekeeping. I was relatively happy with all three of these polishes. Application was OK - they have quite soft brushes, which did make application in the corners of my nails a little tricky. Instead of filling in any gaps, the brush just sort of bent back, so I had to use the very ends of the bristles to dab some in the corners. Not ideal! They also have a weird finish - glossy like normal polish, but they sort of look a bit like paint. Everything else was pretty good though- fast dry time, good opacity etc etc.

Friday, 26 April 2013

Girly Girl Nail Art Challenge Week 5: Gotta Love Chick Flicks?

Greetings All!

This is my second challenge post for today! I guess I should have studied the themes a little better before joining in, because I can't think of a single 'chick flick' I've even seen all the way through! Romantic comedies  really aren't my thing - I like horror movies! Blood and guts, not hearts and flowers!

I honestly did try to think of something film related, but there was no way I was going to be able to do them justice. So I'm hoping that the other lovely ladies taking part in this challenge will let me make a deal - you bring the movies, and I'll bring the popcorn!

For the 'popcorn' I used Sally Hansen Yellow Kitty, Barry M Yellow and Boots 17 Tiger's Eye, and some cling film. The 'bag' is Sally Hansen Ivory Skull and Right Said Red. They make my nails look like duck feet! And they don't really look like popcorn. Oh well, I've always said I'm not a girly girl! I've been dreading this week (and next week lol), but I'm sure you'll forgive me! Right?

Relaxed 31DC Week 9: Rainbow

Greetings All!

We got through another week! Because of my hours changing at work, I now have Fridays and Saturdays off! Which is the closest thing I've had to a weekend off for probably about 20 years.

Today is double challenge Friday! So you'll be getting a Girly Girl post later, but for now, the relaxed 31 day/week challenge, hosted by Rambles of a Polish Addict. This week the theme is rainbows. In the past I've had lots of inspiration for rainbow manicures, but I've often struggled with the execution. Before I got into nail art, I would sometimes wear a rainbow skittle - this was nearly 10 years ago, when I was about 18 or so, so I was way ahead of the times!

For today's nails, I wanted to do a rainbow gradient. I tried, several times, but there were just too many colours on my short(ish) nails and it really didn't work. So instead, I took the same principle, and just did some sponging.

Now, I am aware that this looks like a bit of a hot mess! But at a normal distance, it did look a lot softer and blended, almost like tie dye. And it does look better than the gradients I tried, believe me! Either way, I like it - there's just a smidgen too much red. I actually used to do gradients like this the first few times I tried them - then I gave up for a few months because they looked so awful, until I learned to sponge on all the colours I was using, not just one at a time

I started off with 2 coats of Sally Hansen Ivory Skull (I didn't need a new white, but it has skull in the name!), then I sponged on some Yellow Kitty in the middle. First I worked up, with Miss Sporty Orange and OPI The Thrill of Brazil, then down with Sally Hansen Grass Slipper, The Sky's The Limit, and Models Own Pukka Purple (I forgot that my camera thinks it's blue! But I think it still works).

Please take a moment to check out everyone else's rainbow nails!

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Tri Polish Challenge April 2013: Manicure 4

Greetings All!

This is the last Tri Polish manicure for this month. There will be another four next month! The rules remain the same - 3 polishes, 4 manicures.

Unfortunately I have saved the worst until last for you! Personally I think this month I started with the best, and then things have slowly gone downhill from there! Here is a quick reminder of the polishes I've used all this month.

And here is what I did with them today.

Now, in my head this was like a psycho giraffe print. It hasn't quite worked out that way! I think because I only did one colour at a time - I should have used 2 brushes, and painted the pink and orange together. What I actually did was paint the orange, and try and leave gaps for the pink. Still, I think it's important to show you my fails - I don't want to pretend to be someone who doesn't fail all the time because I totally do!

Hopefully there are some more successful nails in among this lot!

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

More UK Indies From Tara's Talons: Get Nailed!

Greetings All!

As I promised on Monday, I have a bit of a special post for you! You may remember, earlier this month, I showed you some polishes by a brand new British indie polish maker, Tara, from Tara's Talons. Her first collection was all based on childhood memories (you can visit her Etsy store HERE), and last week I found out she had made a whole new collection, based on mythical creatures! Of course I had to have a look, and I ended up choosing three pretties.

For her last collection,Tara only made 10 bottles of each shade, so that the lucky few to snag one would have a unique and unusual polish, that you weren't going to see on everyone else's nails. This time however, each shade is a one off! I did debate sharing these with you - if you like them, tough! You can't have them!

Leprechaun is a tealy, sea foamy green jelly, packed with green and silver glitter. This is 2 coats

This one is just packed with glitter, you only need 2 coats even though the polish itself is quite sheer, it's a lovely colour (why can't I resist a green polish?), although it remind me more of mermaids than leprechauns!

Dragon Breath is an aubergine purple metallic, with an indecent amount of gold shimmer. 2 coats

This is rich and gorgeous and so shimmery! Like all the other shades I have tried, it's very opaque and pigmented - I don't think you need more than 2 coats for any of them. And so much sparkle! Which I love. I also love dragons, so win-win!

Genie is a beautiful purple with pink, purple and silver glitter. Unfortunately these pictures really do not do it justice!

I do like a purple, especially ones with a slight inclination towards magenta, like this one. This is 2 coats, but one would have almost done! I love the small silver glitter in the background with the little dots of pink glitter - this is my favourite of the three!

So, apologies if you like any of these! Because you can't have them! However Tara still has polishes left, from both collections HERE, and I would definitely recommend them! She's a lovely girl, obviously super creative and talented, and I'm very happy to be able to support her polish creating, especially when the results are so pretty.

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Tri Polish Challenge April 2013: Manicure 3

Greetings All!

Please don't make me go over the rules again. Here are the polishes I've used.

And here are today's nails.