Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Gradient Stamped Tips

It seems I've been doing a lot of full size nail designs lately, so a few nights ago, I thought I'd change it up with something that I hadn't done in a while...this is what I came up with.

Started with two coats of Zoya Mira.

Applied a thin coat of Cover Girl Amethyst Mist. When I'm doing these funky french gradient kind of manis, I have a tendency to apply the layering polishes too thick as in my mind, I think I need two coats or one heavier one for good colour coverage....unfortunately, the end result is that I have really thick tips as there's so many layers of polish on them! But in this case, I was taking the less is more approach. (Blue glitter, cool!)

Added Midie Color 6 on tips. I picked up a bunch of these glitter polishes as the colours and glitter look interesting! I've used two or three of them now and haven't been disappointed, especially for a polish that it on the less expensive side. (Caution...smelly!) Check out this bottle of gorgeousness.

Midie applied over Amethyst Mist.

Stamped using CH26 using Konad light gray special polish.

I decided to add rhinestones so broke out my iridescent ones as I thought the pink/purple/blue/white hues would compliment the other polishes well. Too bad that the prettiness doesn't translate well in the pix though!

Different lighting/different camera settings! While you see the glitter better in the pix below, the above pix is more true to colour.

My stamping nemesis is these type of french tipped designs as I can never line them up well...but I didn't do too bad of a job for once! Yeah me!

Thanks for looking!

Monday, February 27, 2012

I've Got the Blues...

...on my nails, that is!

China Glaze Bahamian Escape was one of the polishes my DD used last weekend when she did her nails....as I was putting it away, I thought why not do a mani in it too? This is what I came up with!

Two coats of Bahamian Escape.

Topped with one fairly thick coat of Island Girl Island Volcano. Island Girl polishes aren't available in my area but I was fortunate enough to receive a few of them from a gal who had visited Las Vegas, who cp'd them for me as part of a swap we worked out. I was really surprised how thick and goopy Island Volcano was...is this normal? I had to add quite a bit of thinner just to make it workable to put on my nails.

But I must have thought the end result was very cool as I took an awful lot of pictures of it!

Stamped with an assortment of plates using white Konad special polish...QA 17 on thumb, QA18 on index, Konad m79 on middle , Konad M79 on pinky and Big SdP F on ring finger.

Added dots in every colour under the rainbow using an assortment of polishes! Lastly, topped with a coat of SV.

When I finished this mani, I thought it looked more appropriate for spring or Easter, but oh well...I can always do something along these lines again if I feel like it then! While I did this mani a few days ago, my current NOTD is also blue...so I guess you'll be seeing another blue mani posted in the next little while!

Hope you had a great weekend...and thanks for looking!

Friday, February 24, 2012

More Dragonflies!

When I was going through my dragonfly phase of mani's not too long ago, I decided to do a gray/charcoal/black combo too....here's what I came up with.

Started with a base of Orly Mirror Mirror, two coats.

One coat of China Glaze Let's Do it in 3D on accent finger.

Stamped! Black Konad special polish using Big SdP M.

I then filled in the dragonfly wings with Let's Do it in 3D.

On the accent finger, I used a darker pink glitter striping polish for some interest in the wings (but unfortunately failed to note which one I used.... I don't think it matters much as its not terribly visible anyway!).

Also added a few random dots using CND Plumville. (This actually reminds me that I want to try to stamp using these CND creme polishes....they are generally one coaters and have some vibrant hues; I'm thinking they'll work well for stamping. I turn to them often for adding dots as they are so well pigmented.)

Another image plate design that is right up my alley right now! Lots of opportunity to see the base colour including layering combinations; then so many possibilities just by changing the base colours, the stamping colour and then adding some cool interest by filling in the wings! And then jazzing it up with a few dots!

Have a great weekend....and thanks for looking!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Playing with Old Dusty Polishes

I'm sure you're tired of me commenting how I'm getting more into layering recently...and trying to combine a cool layering combination with some interesting stamping. So not too long ago, I spent a bit of time (who am I kidding...a lot of time!) in one of my local dusties riffling through the bins looking for polishes that I thought could be interesting for layering. This is the result of a few of my finds.

I'm not a terribly creative or visual person; I can't look at polishes and think, well this will look cool with that on top...my brain just doesn't see those unique layering possibilities...so I spent a couple of hours...yes, hours...at the store, picking up the polishes, shaking them up, tilting them, looking at them in different angles and lighting...I'm sure the sales ladies thought I was a little kooky! Good thing it was a place that I frequent often and they know me well as 'that polish lady'...nothing annoys me more then when I'm hurried along in my polish shopping when looking at polishes...typically the smaller beauty shop supply places that watch over me when I'm in the store like I'm a shoplifter...I hate that!

Anyway, these were a few of my purchases....blah in a bottle I tell you!

And my experimenting when I got home. Um, I guess I bought quite a few bottles, eh? Lol!

All I can say is thank goodness these look so blah in the bottle...which I'm sure is why these older polishes are so plentiful in my area...because I'm sure if everyone could visualize their gorgeousness when layered, everyone would have snatched them up already! I'm not sure how well you can see this, but if you look in the very far left hand corner, you'll see my swatch of a cool, glitter polish I found with diamond shaped glitter in it...it was terribly goopy and thick when I bought it, but came back nicely with some thinner. I've yet to use it on a mani though.

After I finished playing with them and decided which polishes to use, I started my mani using one coat of Wet n Wild Black Creme.

Did the layering using the selected dusty polishes.

Bottle pix of the polishes I used for this mani. A couple of these had more colour than the rest of the blah in a bottle ones, but they were too sheer for my liking without doing a lot of coats, which is why I picked them up for layering. These are the five bottles I used for my mani; the first one is on the middle finger (Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear Lemon Lime), the second on the thumb (Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear Hot Magenta), the third on the pinky (Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Nylon, Balance Fr., colour #4363-12; has a 12 on the top of the lid), fourth on index (Sally Hansen Hard as Nails New Lengths Ceramics, Sheer Glisten, colour no. 6212-01 and has a 01 on top of lid) and the last one was on the ring finger (Rimmell 60 Seconds, Pulsating)**.

Then stamped using Black Konad special polishes with QA 17.

I'm not sure if you can see this well, but the stamping polish kinda shrunk and cracked after I stamped on the middle finger, which you can see in the above pix right at the tip. But I just touched it up with a bit of polish and you can't even tell in the pix below.

So simple and cool....I can't wait to try out more of these dusty finds including seeing how they look over colours other than black!

Thanks for looking!

**Post was edited to include names of polishes on nails (Feb 24 2012).

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Mardi Gras Nail Fail

For some reason, Fat Tuesday kinda snuck up on me and I hadn't done any Mardi Gras nails. This is a huge faux pas for a theme mani kinda gal like me! lol! I think this is mainly because I thought Mardi Gras was in March for some reason.... anyway, after I posted last night, I did the Mardi Gras theme mani I was looking forward to doing the most. This is the pix of the best of the worst:

I took this pix after placing the decal on the pinky, thumb and middle nails, but just before I top coated the last nail, which was the index finger, which is why the index finger decal isn't all funny yet. I had seen each of the other designs go all funny once they were top coated so I thought I'd snap one quick pix before the last image on the index finger went funny too.

I used Nicole by OPI Positive Energy for the base; this was one coat topped with SV.

I waited about half an hour after applying the base coat before starting to apply the decals to make sure the base was dry. I've used these water, slide on kind of decals in the past (Thanksgiving mani) and while they are a little tricky to apply, I was able to remove and place them decently. In fact, I'd say these slid off the paper backing better and had more play to them that the other brand I used. But after I top coated the design, the design kinda evaporated to one degree or another! Even when I did topcoat the index finger, it ended up looking like this.

It further faded even after I took this picture to the point that only the face is visible on my index nail right now. I haven't figured out it if had to do with using SV as a topcoat which maybe is too harsh of a topcoat for these old decals, or if the design was too wet or dry when I top coated it, or if it was too thick of a coat...not really sure what was the caused this! I'm going to experiment a little bit more or google/youtube some hints to see if I can figure out what I did wrong! I had plans on adding some minor stamping to compliment the decals but with a fail this bad, I just thought I'd save the stamping polish for next time!

I've never used these Sally Hansen decals before; the ones I used at Thanksgiving were a different brand. So if any of you have used them recently and got good results without disintegrating the decal, I'd love to know your tips! If I find out anything, I'll post about it as I bought a few packages of various holiday designs as they are just so darn cute! I'm wondering if this is inherent with the design of the decal and if this is why Sally Hansen doesn't make them anymore? Maybe just too finicky?.....

Anyway, in case you were wondering about my accent nail, it was two coats of China Glaze Jumpin' Jupiter and one coat of Aurora Borealis as I thought these two would go well seeing how they are moreso traditional Mardi Gras colours! But this failed me to...not only am I not too much of a fan of this furry bar glitter, it came off in one big swoop when I was moisturizing my nails before I went to sleep...almost two hours after I finished this mani! So right now, in addition to having barely there, fudged up decals on my nails, I have no polish at all on my accent nail...I'm naked in public for the first time in years!

The best nails in the house right now are these:

DD did her nails last night; she had seen something like this somewhere in the blogesphere (if I knew where or anyone knows, I'll gladly credit) and did them herself while I made dinner last night. While she has stamped her nails plenty of times, she had never done a tape mani before and I think she did a fantastic job! Pretty cool nails and great job for a teen..heck, I think her cleanup of the black Konad is better than mine most days! I think I may have to try this some day!

The only good thing about nail fails is that its easily remedied by remover...which I plan on doing promptly as soon as I have time tonight!

Thanks for looking!

Edit: After a bit of googling, I did read that a thin coat of topcoat should be applied over decal; when dry, to apply another coat over the entire nail and NOT to use quick dry topcoats as they contain solvents that will damage the decal...so I'm guessing this was the cause of my decal failure. I will be trying out these decals again using these new found tips as I bought a few and the designs are really cool...IMHO!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Family Day Mani...for Family Day!

Today is Family Day in Ontario...aka...an excuse for a long weekend in February! I thought I'd do a mani about my family; this is what I came up with!

I'm on the thumb...a coffee loving, card playing, nail fanatic!

Next is DH. He loves the Toronto Maple Leafs, playing cards...and eating! That cupcake was suppose to be on my nail as I'm the baker and I had another food image for his nail...just not enough room!

Middle finger is DS1. No, he's not a closet Jason! lol! That's a goalie mask as DS is a goalie for lacrosse....right now, he's playing for a JrA lacrosse team in our area...is was also on Team Ontario, who won the National Championship this past summer for his age group...ya, he lives, eats and breathes lacrosse! He's also a big gamer....but I chose to add a pair of earphones as, typical of most teens...at least any I know of, he has a wire hanging out of at least one of his ears from his ipod most of the time.

Ring finger is DD...the butterfly is for Ms. Social Butterfly...also a makeup loving, shop 'til she drops teen...who has a massive sweet tooth, hence the candy! Too bad that I mumble stamped all these together...she's also loves to sing and dance...I had stamps set aside for her nail for this too...just not enough space on my little nails.

Pinky is DS2...a massive gamer too, hence Pikachu! In addition to gaming (when he's not eating, sleeping or breathing), he also likes to swim as well play with his pal Spike...who's right on the tip of the nail!

Base colours, two coats, starting at thumb, are Duri Taming of the Shrew, SpaRitual Circle of Life, China Glaze Turned Up Turquoise (3 coats), CND Sweet (this could be a one coater but I did two), and LA Girl Disco Brites Psychedelic (3 coats).

Stamped using white Konad special polish using unnamed/unmarked fauxnad for coffee, fauxnad m56 (leaf), NailArt Diva WBO8-4 (mask and hockey stick), Lilic A02 (shoe), CH17 (lipstick), CH6 (candy), Lilic A01 (cupcake), SdP 57 (nail polish bottle and butterfly) and m48(cards), CH27 (headphones), and XXL Big SdP-01(doggy).

Added a few hearts and stars by isolating them from the full size plate images on KD3.

Lastly, added a few random dots and topped with SV.

Hope you had a good weekend...its going to be tough going back after three days off though!

Thanks for looking!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Another Mani Using Cheeky Plates

I have so many mani's yet to post, but this is the mani on my hands right now which I've decided to post.

When I was out Christmas shopping, one of my stops was at Ardene's as my DD wanted one of those never-ending scarf thingys. When I was paying, I seen a few polishes in bins at the check out and picked up a couple; this is the one I decided to wear when I did my nails last night. The brand is ACO and this is two coats of Royal Wink. Its a deep purple and dries satin, what you are seeing is with a coat of SV.

I can't remember how much these polishes were; the bottle says $3.50 but I seem to think they were 2/$6...anyway, a whole lot of gorgeousness even if I paid $3.50! My only fear is nail staining...I guess I'll know later when I take this mani off...maybe tonight or in a day or so (Edit: no staining when I removed this mani!). These pictures show the polish much brighter and lighter than it is in real life; it is pretty dark and deep, more in colour like the stamped pictures.

I also picked up a glitter which I put on to accent. This pix is with one coat of the accent glitter, ACO Confetti Glitter, but I actually did two...just couldn't get a good picture to post with two coats on.

Stamped using CH12 with Konad white stamping polish. This type of full image design, when you can see the base colour well, lots of opportunity to add some dots and glitter, is right up my alley....I could wear a variation of this mani for weeks all using the same image plate just by changing the base, stamping colours and dots! This type of design is exactly what I go for when I don't have lot of time to do my nails but it is so easy to jazz up to make a cool mani....my opinion of cool mani anyway!

After stamping, used CND Raspberry Parfait to dot center of the flowers.

Do you see my boo-boos? When I first stamped the image, I royally messed up the image on the tip of my index finger and because it was in such an obvious spot, I just took a bit of remover on a brush with acetone and took it off as you can see above..but then I thought I'd give a try on isolating one of the flowers and stamp one in...which I did as you can see from the pix below. On my ring finger, I did an extremely heavy dot on the little flower so I removed it too (look two pix up at the tip) and restamped a new one as you can see below.

I was browsing Amazon earlier today and seen that these Cheeky plates are back in stock at Amazon**. They are available for shipping within US. Amazon UK and DE also have them available (edit: Amazon UK only have 4 sets left and it seems that Amazon DE are sold out as noted by Chester. I believe US only has limited quantaties as well!). I had my plates delivered to a mail delivery store (UPS Store), then drove to Niagara Falls USA to pick them up...really the only option if you live in Canada unless you know someone in US who can have them delivered to their address and then ship them to you!

Hope you're having a great weekend....thanks for looking!

**Please note that I paid the invoiced amount in full for my plates. I do not endorse nor promote this website/etailer other than I am passing on the info of where I got them to those who may wish to know. I have no affiliation with any company and received no compensation for promotion of these products, nor am I promoting them...just letting fellow bloggers where they may be obtained should they be interested!