Friday, May 25, 2012

Oh no! Back to short nails again....

My nails did not survive last night's shift at my retail job very well. We had to move some shelving units around and I ended up accidentally tearing two of them off. When I got home I had no choice but to cut them all very short...I am not a fan! I think having short fingernails like this makes my hands look very strange.

So I'm going to have to take a break from most of my swatching, I just don't want to show awesome polishes on not awesome nails. Plus, is it just me, or is it harder to paint short nails? I feel like there's just not as much area to work with, so it's much harder not to accidentally flood a cuticle.

I'm trying to look on the bright side, though, and am telling myself that this is a good chance to wear dark polishes that don't always look good on longer nails. Am I right? I've always sort of thought that dark colors look strange on long nails. I feel like your nails don't have to be THIS short, however, because they're just ridiculously short right now. (Can you tell I'm really sad about this?)

Anyway, today I'm wearing one of those nameless Urban Outfitters polishes that I posted about here. The formula on this one was great. Perfectly opaque in two coats, the brush was perfect, and I really love the square bottles, because I don't feel like I'm about to knock them over all the time. This is two coats over Orly Bonder basecoat with one coat of China Glaze Fast Forward topcoat.

This one's a bit more olive green than it looks above, but it does sort of go back and forth between brown and green depending on the light. It's got a gorgeous gold shimmer running through it that really just makes the color happen for me. The only thing I could fault it on is that brushstrokes are visible even after two coats, but I think that's just the nature of some polishes.

Please excuse the oddness on my index finger, had a bit of a mishap with some topcoat. I'm not sure it's my favorite color on my nails, but I do love this one as a color. I'm also officially a fan of Urban Outfitters polishes!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

OPI Skull & Glossbones swatch and review

Hey everyone! Today I've got a quick NOTD to show you, this is from the OPI Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides mini collection that came out in Spring 2011. I missed out on getting the collection then, but fortunately it was still readily available on the internet. This is the first out of four polishes that I'll be swatching for my blog out of this collection, OPI Skull & Glossbones.

What you see above is three coats of OPI Skull & Glossbones over OPI Natural Nails basecoat with two coats of China Glaze Fast Forward topcoat. (In retrospect, two coats of topcoat was a bad idea, you can see the bubbles that showed up!)

This is a murky greyish brown with a hint of green. I wasn't sure if it would look good on my skin tone, because I've worn cool greys before that looked terrible! But I think the brown tones in this warm it up a little and I actually really like how it looks on my nails! I would wear this again, especially to the office on days when I can't have crazy bright nails -- it's subtle and neutral.

The only thing I can fault it for is a really gloopy formula. It took three awkward coats to get it to this stage, and the brush was really wonky too. To add insult to injury, there was dried polish on the inside of the lid, and it made getting the brush in and out of the bottle really annoying. I'm hoping that my other bottles from this set aren't as aggravating. Also, I've only worn it for about 12 hours (painted my nails last night, and I just got back from my lunch break at work), and it's already chipped a couple times. However, that might be due to my poor decision to try two coats of topcoat - a mistake I will not be making again!

I'll see you next time with more swatches from this collection -- I've still got OPI Stranger Tides, OPI Sparrow Me the Drama, and OPI Planks a Lot to wear!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

OPI Nicki Minaj swatches (Part 2)

I'm back with the second post in my two-part swatch and review of the OPI Nicki Minaj mini can see the first post here if you missed it! The first two polishes in the collection were OPI Did It on 'Em and OPI Fly, and the second two are OPI Pink Friday and OPI Metallic 4 Life.

But...wait just a moment?

The packaging clearly says that this polish is OPI Metallic 4 Life, but when I took a closer look at the bottles, it seems like it might be OPI Save Me, a different polish from the collection, instead. Isn't that strange?

Here's images from OPI of each, to compare. Top is OPI Metallic 4 Life, bottom is OPI Save Me.

And here's a picture of the bottle that I got.

Yep, it's NOT OPI Metallic 4 Life. Which is disappointing, because I actually was looking forward to that one! However, after doing this manicure, I did fall in love with what I actually got.

The manicure that I did with OPI Pink Friday and OPI Save Me was inspired by this post on Rebecca Like Nails, which is one of my favorite nail blogs. It's called a Manhattan Cocktail Manicure, and basically, all your nails are one color, except for your thumb and first two fingers on your right hand, or "cocktail hand," and you paint those colors something contrasting, like a fun glitter.

So on my left hand, all my nails are painted in two coats of OPI Pink Friday, with OPI Natural Nails basecoat and China Glaze Fast Forward topcoat. It's a bubble gum pink that I wasn't sure if I liked at first, since I'm not normally a fan of pink, but it's slowly growing on me, and the formula was fantastic.

But on my right hand, my accent nails have a coat of China Glaze Liquid Leather (a great black for layering glitter over!) followed by three coats of OPI Save Me, which is my new favorite glitter! It's got small silver glitter with tiny HOLOGRAPHIC bar glitter! It looks so incredible in the sunlight. I've never had a polish with bar glitter, much less beautiful holographic bar glitter. I can't stop staring at my nails every time I go outdoors.

Three coats of OPI Save Me actually covered pretty well, I'm not sure if I needed the Liquid Leather underneath. Although at first I was super disappointed that I didn't get OPI Metallic 4 Life, I'm over it now because OPI Save Me is so fantastic!

Here's another picture of the glitter, out of focus so you can see the pretty colors in the bar glitter better.

And here's pictures of my hands side by side so you can see the Manhattan Cocktail Mani effect!

What do you think? Did anyone else get OPI Save Me instead of what was supposed to be in the package? Should I go get a large bottle of OPI Metallic 4 Life? Is it worth it? Let me know what you think in the comments below!

Monday, May 21, 2012

OPI Nicki Minaj swatches (Part 1)

This week I'm going to be showing you two fun looks that are created from OPI's Nicki Minaj collection that came out in January. I know it's nothing new for most people, but I missed out on this one and just recently decided to pick up the mini collection when I saw it at my local Ulta. I wasn't too sure if it was worth the money, but as soon as I put these pretties on my fingernails I knew I'd made the right choice! In fact, now I'm wishing I would have grabbed the bigger bottles of a couple of them, because a couple of my coworkers have already asked to borrow them!

So first up is a pretty basic mani with the first two shades from the mini collection, OPI Did It on 'Em, and OPI Fly. Here's a bottle shot of the colors I used:
under indoor light

OPI Did It on 'Em is a bold, bright chartreuse (that means it's halfway between yellow and green!), that is very similar in the bottle to OPI Who the Shrek Are You, although since I don't own the Shrek polish, I can't compare them. However, according to swatches online, OPI Did It on 'Em looks to be a tad more yellow. It's definitely a funky, eye catching color. What you see below is three coats, with OPI Natural Nails basecoat and China Glaze Fast Forward topcoat. The formula was a little thin, it definitely needed all three coats.
in sunlight

OPI Fly is also bold and bright. I thought it would be a bit more pastel, but after swatching it, I discovered that it's a bright, not-quite-teal shade! It's now become one of my favorite blue polishes! For my accent nail on my ring fingers, I did two coats with the aforementioned base and top coats. The formula was a bit better than on OPI Did It on 'Em, it wasn't streaky at all, although if you look closely, you can see a bit of VNL in real life. Three coats probably would have solved that problem.

So...that's it for my first OPI Nicki Minaj manicure, what do you think? Did you buy this collection when it first came out, or did you wait like I did? Feel free to leave me comments below!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Sinful Colors - Neon Melon swatches and review

Hello world! Sorry I've been absent for a bit, had some family issues that required my attention, which unfortunately also required that I put everything else on the back burner! But I'm back this week, and have some great polishes that I'm excited to share with you.

First up is this little neon, which is from the Sinful Colors line at Walgreens. I got this one a couple weeks ago when they were having a 50% off sale on them, which means that I got this for just $1! Can't beat that, right?

Neon Melon, in the bottle, looks like the perfect highlighter yellow--a color I've been searching for to wear this summer! Unfortunately, I had a couple problems with the application, which means that I'm not as in love with it as I was when I first saw it. Also, please excuse my really dry hands! I can't believe I didn't notice how dry they were when I was taking these, and then I took the polish off before I realized. But anyway, on to the swatches.

Shown here with a base coat of Orly Bonder and a top coat of China Glaze - Fast Forward.

First of all, it's REALLY SHEER. Not three coats sheer, more like this took me five coats to even get it to this level of opaqueness (see above) and, as you can see, there's still bald spots and streaks. I can usually handle a three-coater, which is still more sheer than most polishes, but five + coats is just crazy.

In some lights, it looks a little more canary yellow (like in the photo above)  but as you can see, it really is a neon, as the name suggests. I'm not sure why it's called Melon though, because when I think of melons, I tend to think pink. But anyway....

My other problem with this one was that it stained my nails, and if it wasn't such a funky color, I wouldn't have minded, but my fingers look sort of diseased now, a weird greenish yellow! I even used a base coat of Orly Bonder, but guess I'll need to double up on that next time. 

I did read something on a blog about layering neons like this over white, and I was going to try that, but when I went to grab my bottle of white polish, it was missing! I have no clue where it went, since I haven't seen it for quite some time. I guess I'll have to get another here soon--any recommendations for a great white?

Monday, May 7, 2012

Latest swatches -- OPI and Zoya

Hello loves, sorry that I haven't posted in the last few days or that I didn't participate in Mani Monday today! I had to leave town because of an illness in the family, things are not great but I'm just thankful that they're not any worse. I've only had a bit of time to do my nails as a result, and no time to get great photos of these, but here's a few things I've had on my nails in the last week or so. They're unfortunately all cell phone/Instagram photos, but that's all I have.

This is three coats of OPI - My Pointe Exactly with one coat of OPI - Pirouette My Whistle. Sorry about the crappy cell phone photo!

Even after three coats, there is definitely still some VNL, which bugged me, but moreso I didn't like the light grey on my nails/skin tone. I felt like my nails looked stained. But I really liked the Pirouette My Whistle glitter coat, and I think the other colors that I got from the OPI New York Ballet collection will look better on me. I got the four-pack of minis from this one, which is the first time I've gotten the minis. I think I've always been worried that they'd be two small, and that the brush would be too small, and that I'd run out of polish after three manicures. None of my fears came true! In fact, the smaller brush even made it easier to paint more neatly. I'd definitely get the mini's again, especially if I wasn't wild about a collection.

I also got my first Zoya polishes, Wednesday and Juno! I've been loving Wednesday since I first saw the swatches, and of course I had to have Juno! I was so excited that there was a polish named after me. I'm not wild about purples, but I still bought it.

I was wearing Juno the day before yesterday, but with everything that's been going on, I completely forgot to take a picture of it before I took it off! I felt so bad, but what that means is that I'll definitely be wearing it again. It's much prettier than I expected, its a rich purple with a touch of gold/green duochrome in it. It dries very shiny, and my boyfriend absolutely loved it! He thought it was so awesome that there was a nail polish with the same name as me.

And last but definitely not least, the polish that I've been waiting for for months! OPI - Just Spotted the Lizard is everything that I've been dreaming about since I first saw the press release. It's the most perfect gold/green iridescent duochrome, an exact dupe for Chanel Peridot (which I don't own, but now I don't need to!), and pretty much my new favorite polish. I'm so excited, I'll probably get a second bottle. It's from the OPI Spiderman collection, which is in stores this month. I also have my eye on a couple other polishes from that collection, but I haven't bought them yet. I was too excited about this one!

Anyway, my time's up for being on the internet right now, I got a bunch of other things I need to take care of. Thanks for reading, and feel free to comment on any of these polishes below! Which one's your favorite??

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

NOTD: China Glaze Smoke and Ashes and Electrify

Hi everyone, just a quick NOTD to share with you all since I don't have time today for a full blog post. I finally got the bottle of China Glaze - Smoke and Ashes that I ordered (had to get it online since everywhere around me was sold out of it!), so of course I had to pair it with China Glaze - Electrify. I know this has been done and done over again, but I hadn't done a Hunger Games manicure yet so here's mine!

Thanks for reading! I'll be back next time with some great neon swatches to share with you!

Monday, April 30, 2012

Tape Manicure featuring China Glaze - For Audrey

Today's a special day, because I'm linking up with Glitter and Gloss and Just Things for their first Mani Monday!!

So the day after I posted my China Glaze - For Audrey swatch last week, I was getting ready to redo my nails. But I loved the For Audrey so much, I decided that I couldn't bear to take it off yet -- so I decided to keep it for another day by trying something new on top. What to try? Well, I have bunches of untested nail polishes, and even more great ideas that I've seen around the internet and on Pinterest. So I decided to try a tape manicure!

Choosing the other color was made easier by the fact that I had just picked up this totally rad set of metallic/shimmer nail polishes in a assortment of earthy colors from Urban Outfitters. I had gone in to see if they carried Model's Own (they do), but spotted these on the sale rack instead. Normally retailed for $20 -- which is still a great deal for six polishes -- but I scored them for only $4.99. O.O

I don't actually know what brand these are, because they don't have labels, or even names for that matter. The box said "Paint Palette" but when I looked online I saw polishes in identical bottles that identified them as "UO Nail Polish."'s a mystery. I wish they had names, fact I'm tempted to give them names myself! If they do have names, can someone please fill me in on what they are?

I chose the most glittery gold one and decided to give it a whirl. It had a great formula! It went on perfectly smooth, the brush was excellent, and it only took one coat to cover over the For Audrey and China Glaze Fast Forward top coat that I was already wearing. I also really like the square bottle. It's heavier than most bottles, and I'm not constantly worried that I'm going to knock it over. I'm seriously impressed for a clothing store polish, and I can't wait to test out the other five bottles. If they are as good as this one was, I'll be buying way more polish from UO in the future.

 So here's the colors I actually used for this mani.

To actually do the tape mani was also super easy. I just grabbed a roll of tape and placed it over my nails so that part was uncovered and part was covered. Then I put a coat of polish over it, waited a couple minutes for it to dry, and peeled off the tape. The lines are crisp and clean! I waited a couple more minutes before applying another coat of China Glaze - Fast Forward topcoat because I didn't want to smear the lines, and then it was good to go!

I really like this look, since it's pretty and modern all at the same time--and super easy. It was easy to succeed at, even on my right hand.  It was the boyfriend and mine's six-month anniversary on Saturday, so I wore this manicure on our date as well. In fact, I'm still wearing it now, almost three days later. It's not often that I leave my nails alone for that long! I'll definitely be trying more tape mani's in the future.

Thanks for reading, and I hope I inspired someone to try a tape mani too! Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Love, Juno

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Sally Hansen Diamond Strength - Platinum and Bride to Be (Swatches and Review)

Hey everyone! I'm back with a couple new swatches to show you all! These are Sally Hansen polishes, from the Diamond Strength Nail Color line. I've been fan of Sally Hansen since before high school (I got into painting my nails when I was like 9 or 10!), since they're very affordable and available almost everywhere. But these are actually the first polishes I'd tried from the Diamond Strength series. I don't know why they never jumped out at me before, I think it's probably just because most of the colors are things I'd seen before - lots of sensible pinks and reds. But CVS was having a sale on them a couple weeks ago, and I decided to try a couple. I picked out Platinum and Bride to Be, both of which I thought would be nice on their own and nice to layer over other colors, like black or purple.

For this blog post, I'm going to show you just these polishes on their own. Each took three coats to be somewhere close to opaque, which further strengthens my belief that they're probably best suited for layering.

Platinum, shown above, was extremely sheer. Even after three coats, there was still VNL. It was also a super-thin formula, which made it a little runny and hard to work with. Plus, from some angles it barely even looked like I had anything on my nails at all. So, by itself, this one is perfect for when you just want the barest hint of shine on your tips. It was a little old lady-ish, mostly because of the frost finish in my opinion, but it's still something I might wear to work on a day where I couldn't pull off a more bold color.

I didn't like Bride to Be (above) nearly as much. It had the same formula as Platinum, but after three coats it was more opaque. However, this one was far more silvery and metallic than it looked in the bottle. To me, in  the bottle it looks like a grey with some shimmer. On my fingers, it looked like frosty aluminum foil! If I was going to wear a shade like this one--which I might go for as a metallic silver, I'd want it to be a lot closer to opaque after one coat. This one certaintly wasn't that. I'm going to give this one more shot over a different color, but if it turns out as bad as this I won't be wearing it again.

All in all, I'm less than in love with the Sally Hansen Diamond Strength polishes thus far. I really love the bottle shape, with it's multiple sided-ness and "jewel" embedded into it, but these polishes failed to blow me away. I'd give it one more shot, maybe trying some reds or glitters (are there Diamond Strength glitters?), but if they're like these ones I won't be buying after that.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

China Glaze - For Audrey

I know most people are already fans of China Glaze's For Audrey, but the bottle that I picked up this week is actually the first one of it I've owned. I wanted to see what all the hype was about...and then I discovered. This is a perfect robin's egg blue. It goes on perfect in two coats, and dries to a smooth and pretty creme. I love it every bit as much as everyone said I would. I can't wait to use this in a ton of manicures in the future! 

Also, please excuse the grainy photo. I don't have my SLR with me tonight since I left it at work, so I took this with my cell phone. I also don't know what happened to make the bottom of the bottle look all weird and grayish, because it doesn't look like that in real life! I'm still learning how to do these swatch photos.

Polish Haul!

So I may or may not have acquired eleven new polishes in the last week! (okay, you got me, I'm guilty) But the sales have been so good this month! Buy 2 Get 1 at Sally Beauty, and then the same at Ulta! So I picked up a bunch of new China Glazes from each of those stores.

Three of the ones that I got were from the Hunger Games collection, of which I now have SEVEN. I will not be buying any more of these, since I have all the ones that caught my eye. This week, I scored Riveting, Harvest Moon, and best of all Electrify. I had almost given up hope on ever getting Electrify since it was sold out everywhere that I went. That made me super sad since I love glitters sooo much. Luckily, there was ONE BOTTLE LEFT when I went to Ulta! I was so happy I did a little dance in the aisle. (That right there shows you how much I love glitters!) I can't wait to wear it...

The other three China Glazes are basics that I've somehow missed out on trying: For Audrey, Liquid Leather, and their fast-dry top coat. I'm particularly excited about Liquid Leather, since it's been a while since I've had a good, basic, black that wasn't Wet N Wild.

And then I stopped by Walgreens, since Sinful Colors is on sale this week for only 99 cents! (C'mon, it's less than a dollar! How could I resist?) I limited myself to five though. Cinderella, San Francisco, Dancing Nails, and...two others that I can't for the life of me remember the names of! I feel super bad, but I'm at work and they're at home. I bought them just based on the the colors, and forgot to double-check the names. One looks like a really nice creme red, which I really need, and the other is a blue/green shimmery one that looks sooo pretty in the bottle. I'm really excited to swatch all of them and post them here!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Very First Post

Why hello there! If there's anyone out there reading this, this is the very first post for my new blog. My name's Juno, and I'm in love with nail polish! I have at least 100 bottles, although I haven't counted recently, and that number is growing almost weekly. I love them all, especially glitters! I decided to create this blog to share my favorites (and maybe least favorites? if I find some?) with the internet.

And what better way to start a new blog than by showing you what's on my fingertips RIGHT THIS VERY MINUTE, as I type this. When I put this polish on last night, I instantly knew it was one my new favorites. It's an Essie polish, from the brand-new Poppy-Razzi collection for Summer 2012. Without further ado...I present to you....BAZOOKA!

I love neons, and this one is a great red-orange jelly neon. It's still a bit sheer, as you can see in the photo above there is a bit of visible nail line (VNL), even after a second coat, but I expect that three coats would solve that problem. It dries to a semi-matte finish, and under indoor lighting (like in the photo above) it looks bright, but not neon. However, when I went outside this morning to head to work, I noticed that it looks incredibly brighter and more neon in the sunlight! I kid you's like a total day-glo orange, brighter than even a traffic cone! What a perfect color for summer.

The other thing I love about this is the that it'd be perfect for a sandwich manicure (which I haven't tried yet, mostly because I haven't had a good jelly to work with. But this one would be a perfect candidate...and I've already got a glitter in mind to pair it with.

I got this polish at Walgreens for $8, but I've seen the new Essie collections at a couple other drugstores near my house as well. There's three other polishes in the collection besides this one: Lights, Camera, and Action. I wasn't as interested in them when I first saw them, but now that I know they're jellies I know I'll be going back for those pretties!

Anyway, thanks for reading (if anyone is). Even if I'm the only one that ever reads this little blog, I'm excited to keep updating it so that I have a tidy little record of my polishes and how pretty they all looked on my nails!

Love, Juno