Wednesday, January 30, 2013

D: Dirty Berry by Catrice

Hey there!  D is today's ABC Challenge and I'm showing a swatch of Dirty Berry by Catrice.  DB is another bottle I got in a swap with Criminal Nails!  Catrice is not available in the US, so this is extra special to me.  This light purple polish has some micro holo glitter in it.  However, it's not a very strong holo, and tends to only show up in super bright sunlight, which we hardly are getting these days... cold, dark, winter.  Although the last two days have been unseasonable warm, but today it's really cloudy and going to thunderstorm with tornado watch... so I might lose power. UGH!  Oh and the temperature is going to drop 30 degrees so now we can all get sick from the wide temperature swings. Nice~!

Anyhow here is two coats of Catrice, DB.

Also, I went up to Sally's the other day and picked up this bottle of Rush top coat on a whim.  It was on sale for $3.99 for one whole ounce!  I've only tried this top coat once but what I can say so far, is that it dries to touch in one minute and after 10 minutes I was able to go about my business. Impressive!  This might become one of my top coats that will be in regular rotation.

There's a smaller bottle, but this one was on sale, so that's why I got it.  Since the bottle is big, the brush is really long and weird to work with.  I probably just need to get accustom to using it.  Lastly the formula is a bit runny so I got top coat all over the place and had to do a second cuticle clean up. Ooops.  Now that I know that, the next time I use this top coat, I'll just be more careful.

Below are the ingredients.  I think ingredients are important.  Whenever I see a cosmetic review (same goes with food) and the ingredients are left out, I say in my brain, "minus 5 points out of 10"!  I can not completely evaluate a product without knowing what's in it.  With nail polish I just look for the big four, DBP, toulene, formaldehyde and camphor... no big deal, since most nail polishes are big three or four free these days anyways. With skin products however, I do look for petroleum based products, sodium lauryl sulfate and synthetic perfumes, mostly, and will avoid those. I look for other stuff too, but those are the basics.

Here's how the room is coming along.  Take two steps backwards.  We painted one coat of Benjamin Moore's Cream Silk and it turned out to be a very light yellow, lemony yellow.... At the first brush stroke I knew I didn't like it.  My husband said, well just paint one wall and see.  So we ended up painting the entire room, and spent two days evaluating it.  Oh boy, we could not convince ourselves to like it.  So one day of labor and $100 worth of paint down the drain, not literally, just figuratively.

Below is the paint chip, second to the top, Cream Silk.  I thought it would be a warm white, not a light lemon color.... so we shall see. Benjamin Moore has 140 different shades of white to choose from so its a daunting task, to say the least.

Well that's it for today.  Next I'll show you what color we ended up with.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Essence Twilight Breaking Dawn - Alice.....

I'm not into vampire movies or shows, but I do like a good vampy polish and I do like Essence.  I got this bottle in a swap with Criminal Nails! Special editions from Essence are released in such limited amounts in the US, that I was really excited to get this in the mail.  I did a quick swatch of number 02 Alice Had a Vision - Again.  Alice is a purple jelly with purple and green micro glitter.  Two super easy coats and it is dark yet sparkly!

I wish I knew who Alice is but I don't. I did try to watch Twilight when it first came out but I was so bored I couldn't make it through the first half.... sorry Twilight fans out there..... I have to say the only vampire movie that I really enjoyed was Interview with the Vampire, with Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt and the very young Kirsten Dunst.

Well, here is how the bedroom is coming along.  We cleaned all the walls and the ceiling.  Then repaired all the holes and dings (there were a lot) with joint compound, sanded and painted one coat of primer.  Whew!  It was a lot of work just getting this far.  This took three days.  What took so long?  Repairing walls is just like icing a cake and painting nails, it takes two coats of joint compound for a smooth finish after sanding.  I never knew this before and found out by watching some videos on the internet.  I used to only apply one coat of compound, sand then prime.  Instead, this time one coat, wait 24 hours, the apply the second coat, wait 24 hours, then sand, then prime. It makes all the difference in the world!

After primer.
Painting the ceiling.  Look how gray and dingy!
If you just tuned in and want to see before pics just click back one post.

That's what I have so far.  See you Wednesday when we do letter D!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Zoya Wednesday

I can not wait until "W" or "Z" in the ABC challenge to come around to wear Wednesday!  So you get to see it today!

I have to tell you Wednesday has a very nice retro, mid-century feel to it. Very close to China Glaze For Audrey, just more green. For Audrey is more blue. They're not dupes but they are pretty darn close and they have the same effect from afar when worn alone.  I'm glad I have both.  I think if your into nail art and added red the differences will become obvious.

Here's two coats of Wednesday.  A very nice creamy formula too, I might add.

Went a little picture crazy.

Here's a comparison to the other teals I own.  Wednesday is the same shade but more green than For Audrey, and it is one shade lighter than Sweet Addiction.  Barielle's Sweet Addiction by the way is a possible one coater, and it is sitting in my untried pile.  I did a swatch of Athens last spring.

Here is a shot at the bottles.

I like any shade of teal or cyan. I wanted to get Bevin too.... must have discipline!

Oh, here are two pictures of the demolition of the bench.

This took three hours or so to take apart.  Inside was lined with cedar so we salvaged that, which is why it took so long.  I am totally relieved to find dry wall behind the bench, but whoever installed it ripped out the windowsills, so I'm going to have to get a carpenter to put those in and fix all the broken molding.  And look gross brown carpet that came before the cream carpet!

Click back two posts to see before photos.

More to come, enjoy the photos!

Giveaway Winners Announced!

It is time to announce the winners of the first giveaway of 2013:

Entry #14Christine L.
Entry #31Lola H.
Entry #11Matilde
Entry #28Ruth G.
Entry #15Angelica


Prize will be matched with the winner going left to right.

If you are a winner respond, within a week, with your address and I'll ship out your prize right away.

I asked for those entering, to name their favorite polishes and here's what was said:

Readers' Favorite Polishes, by brand in alpha order.

A England - St. George

China Glaze
     Let's Groove
     First Mate
     Riveter Rouge
     Lux & Lush
     Sweet Hook
     For Audrey
     Sun Worshipper

Dior - Ivory

Essence - Grumpy

Essie - Turquoise & Caicos

Gosh - Silver
Joe Fresh - "any glitter, silver or gold"

Julep - Rose

Layla - Mercury Twilight

     It's My Year
     DS Glamour
     Royal Rajah Ruby
     Servin Up Sparkle
     007 Collection
     The Show Must Go On

Max Factor - Fantasy Fire over Revlon's Royal

Milani - Lavender Fizz

Revlon - Tropical Chrome (dupe China Glaze Harmony) very helpful!


Other - "any green polish"

Enjoy and thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

C: Cho, Zoya

Howdy!  This is going to be a jammed packed post today, so hold on tight.

First, for the ABC challenge; C: for Cho by Zoya... I want to say heeerrreee's Margaret Cho (the comedienne).... that's who I think about when I see this polish.  Anyways, Cho is a warm neutral... yellowish khaki, with a very subtle silver shimmer. It goes on like a pastel, uneven and tacky, which requires a bit of patience. The results are nice and calming, here is two coats.

On to a bunch of things to show you today. If you remember in an earlier post, I mentioned I hated my wedding band.... love my engagement ring though. Here they are.

Maybe I'm old fashioned, or from the "less is more" camp, but I don't really like to wear rings with flashy nail polish. So sometimes I will wear rings when I wear a nice neutral polish, like Cho.

My wedding band is not attractive when worn alone, that's basically why I don't like it.

Also, below is what I got at the big Zoya sale a couple of weeks ago, 3 polishes for $10 with shipping. DEAL!

I got Pasha, Wednesday, and Cho, (left to right).  The polishes came in this nice box and they sent me a color chart which is really cool. I love color charts, they are like eye candy.

Lastly, home improvement.... The latest project I'm working on is renovating my master bedroom. I think the best way to present this is to post a picture as the project unfolds. At the beginning.....

This is the view from the door looking in.

This is the view with my back facing the window... there's a peek at my bathroom.

So this room is 17 feet by 12 feet. Lavender leaning periwinkle color the walls (sigh), what can I say? They were not my choice, painted by the previous owner, and to my dismay I lived with this for nearly nine years!  Jeeze, almost a decade! I guess it was possible to live like this because my eyes were shut most of the time and I'm too tired from work to deal with it. So, who cares, just go to bed. The cream colored carpets are stained and worn out from us, my clumsy husband spilling drinks, coffee and what not, cats and dogs. Mainly dogs. I had an Italian greyhound who passed away in late 2009 of kidney failure and he vomited a few times on this carpet. I've tried to scrub up the bile but... I know I'm totally grossing you out now.

To add to the negative aspects, this room is dark too, the window faces west and somewhat north. So, it going to be light, neutral walls in here. Maybe even white. I know white can be boring, but lots of people have been doing jewel tones. Moreover, its a bedroom and I need a break, a palate cleanser. I hate red dining rooms! I hate purple walls! I'm tired of khaki and tan. I did the spare bedroom in blue, so no blue.

The bay window with the horrible cushioned "seating" area..."how romantic", NOT! Everyone says that when they see this room. "Oh a bay window, the seated storage area... how nice!" NO, no, no, NO!!! This "romantic seated bench" is going to the dump, where it belongs. It is not efficient use of space, it is inconvenient, uncomfortable and no one wants to sit on it. I used to store bed linens and blankets in that "hole" but they would just get lost and forgotten about. It was a messy way to store things. When I needed to change my bed linens, I had to remove all the cushions and lift up the top. Then while digging around, I had to hold up the heavy lid with one hand, which only left me one other hand and arm to reach down and find what I needed.  UGH!  A really bad and ill conceived idea. Thankfully, I did not build it, it was not my idea.  Don't ever build a bench like this, you'll regret it.

What's the plan for this room? A neutral palette, new furniture and hardwood floors. Next we demolition the storage bench. It gets much worse before it gets any better. Stay tuned!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

B: Barielle Blackened Bleu

I decided to join the ABC challenge. I hope I can keep up!  Today is B, Barielle's Blackened Bleu.  BB is a sheer black jelly with blue shimmer. This is three coats and it feels really thick.  The formula is really nice and easy to work with though.

I haven't tried it yet, but I think this would be really nice to layer with.  The first coat I put on was really sparkly.  The more coats I added the sparkle kind of subsided.  Still pretty though.

I have a blog sale going on right now, and a giveaway.  Don't miss them.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

January GIVEAWAY! Five Possible Winners!

Hey there!  I'm starting the New Year with an awesome giveaway.  The prizes are small but there will be multiple winners to increase chances of winning.

All you have to do, to enter to win, is to follow this blog via google friend connect or bloglovin, and tell us what your favorite nail polish is.  It can be your favorite polish of all time, or of recent.  If you can't pick one name up to three.

This giveaway is open internationally, but I can not ship prizes to Mexico, Central and South Americas, Russia, Middle East and Africa.

Winners will be chosen by Rafflecopter.  Each winner will receive a pair of polishes and one tube of hand cream.

The prizes:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good Luck!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Tape Mani with Revlon 705 Gray Suede

Hey guys!  I had to break away from green and wear a neutral to work, but I didn't want to totally bore you to death, so I did a stripe mani on an accent nail.  It came out okay, not the best but... acceptable I guess.

Revlon's Gray Suede is a nice beige leaning pink with silver shimmer.  I would imagine this would be great if you wanted to show off a flashy diamond on your hands and you don't want your nails competing with your jewelry. One day I'll show you my engagement ring... I hardly ever where it anymore because I wash my hands at least 10 times a day. I developed some irritation around the ring area probably because it keeps getting wet. Also, I totally hate my wedding band and I want a new one but haven't really shopped for a new one. I very seldom wear rings now that I paint my nails all the time. Anyhow.... excuse the bad photos, it has been so dark and foggy here the last four days... such bad lighting these are under florescent.

Revlon's Red Bikini is the color underneath, (one coat).  I really just love this color combo.

Below is the tape I used for this mani, called Frog tape.  I did not get super crisp lines but maybe I pulled the tape off too early.  Frog tape is for painting walls, but it says "multi surface" so hey why not nails?  The adhesive is gentle, not too sticky.  The tape is pretty wide, about 1.5 inches, I cut them horizontally into small strips.  See?

Frog tape is kind of expensive, $7-8 a roll at Lowe's or Home Depot. I bought it because I wanted to paint a block design in our spare bedroom, but hubby was against it, so now I have this roll. I might use it soon because we demolition-ed our master bedroom and we are going to paint that next. Does anyone want to see/read about that? It's not nail polish related so I don't know if anyone would be interested.

Let me know in the comments section below, should I post home improvement projects? And... do you match nail polish to your rings?

Friday, January 11, 2013

Pirate Polish What's Up Doc w/ OPI Ski Teal We Drop

Continuing with my green theme, this month, I've got a green glitter to show you today, from Pirate Polish, What's Up Doc? I've been looking for the perfect teal to pair with this glitter and here it is with OPI's Ski Teal We Drop, from the Swiss collection.  

Ski Teal We Drop is a dark, rich teal cream polish.  This is two coats, decent formula and dries fast.

Below are a couple of bottle shots of What's Up Doc.  The orange bars look like carrots, don't they?

Pirate Polish is an indie brand and can be found at Lacquer Tracker is the maker and she has a blog, click here.  Pretty!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Funky French with OPI Save the Gift Wrap

Hey guys!

Anyone headed over to Zoya today?  They are having a promo, buy 3 free with $10 shipping for US customers.  The code is zoya2013.  The sale is today until 1/13.  I found out about it here.

Well here's today's funky french.

The tips are Zoya's Dita, two coats, freehand.  It looks bumpy but it isn't.  I put a thick coat of ChG's Fast forward top coat and it is really smooth.  The best advice I have for freehand-ing tips is to lay the brush flat, lengthwise, paralleled to the free edge, against the nail and swoop across.  If you make small dabs across, the line won't be straight.

Dita isn't normally this dark, the green underneath is showing through the polish.

Here is Save the Gift Wrap by itself.  This is three coats, the formula was a bit thin, and I had to wait between coats to dry or else it would clump.  I'm not impressed with this one.  Save the Gift Wrap is an Ulta exclusive.  I got it as a freebie, with a coupon, and I had to buy two other OPI's.

Time magazine: Style & Design, Spring 2012, photo by Peter Hapak.

Above is the inspiration for this mani.  Emily Blunt looking fantastic.

That's it for now.  I'm going to to see if this code works.  Let us know what you picked out, if you go to Zoya this week!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Top 10 of 2012

Better late than never, a chance to look's my top 10 favorite manicures for 2012. This was not easy, I was so indecisive that I almost decided not to do this list.

1. Revlon Royal

Why?  It's a jelly, it's blue and the color just makes my heart stop.

2. OPI Every Month is Oktoberfest

This broke me down, and I stopped boycotting OPI partly because of this color.  Kind of a big deal.
Love the Germany Collection, BTW.

3. Revlon's Barebones with Brownstone
Barebones gets the most internet traffic on my blog. So here it is with China Glaze's Brownstone. Loved this manicure, I wore it twice to work!

4. CQ Vintage with Confetti - Tasmanian Devil
This neutral is just dreamy and pretty unique.  On pinterest, a few people have pinned this one.  My storage display has the most pins by far.

5. Revlon's Red Bikini by Gucci Westman
This was surprisingly a very flattering red.  I really like how bold and bright this one is. I got a ton of compliments on this, and lots and lots of traffic.

6. China Glaze - Ruby Pumps with Techno.
Two glitters every girl must have!  I got the most enthusiastic comments on this layering.

 (Ruby pumps over a dark vampy red, before Techno was added.)

7. China Glaze - Desert Sun
I've worn this twice.  This is another unique color.  I just love staring at it.

8. Nina Ultra Pro's Burnished Bronze
Super underrated, Nina's, Burnished Bronze is one of the best in their catalog.  A versatile, sophisticated orange.

9. OPI Care to Danse
I've worn this like five times!!!  Super for work.  Sheer, clean and a nice, unique alternative to a sheer nude, pink or white.  This is sandwich-ing Nubar's White Polka Dot glitter.

10. Sinful Colors Leap Flog
I love this color, it made the top ten because I got so many compliments at work on this polish.

I left out so many good ones.... 2012 was a great year for polish.  Everywhere I go the polish racks are half empty messes.  What will captivate us in 2013?

I did two posts today, so click back to see Sinful Colors Envy.  So far I'm doing predominately green manicures for January.