Sunday, 31 March 2013

Subtle Glitter Gradient + BLING

Hello everyone :)

I've just got back from a lovely few days away in Paris with my other half.  Obviously I had to do my nails for the occasion, and I decided on something subtle and classy (well, I think glitter's classy anyway...).


I used Nails Inc Elizabeth Street (the one that was free with Glamour a little while ago) then added the reverse gradient with Barry M Gold Glitter.

And here's a bonus picture of my nails after our trip up the Eiffel Tower...


My lovely boyfriend is now my fiance!! So excited!!  He's so lovely :)  And he did it after asking someone to take a picture of us both, so we have a picture of him down on one knee lol :)

I hope you've all had a lovely week too :)  My fiance (eeeeee!) is going away to work again next week, so my posting will be more regular again then!  Things have just been a little crazy recently :)

Monday, 25 March 2013

Sponged Nails Tutorial

Sponged nails are one of my favourite things to do when you're in a bit of a hurry or can't be bothered fussing about with brushes and tape and all that jazz, but still want something that looks a bit more interesting than just plain nails.

You can use any colour combination you like for these, and as many or as few polishes as you like.  You can see some examples of my sponged manicures here and here.

You will need: -

  •  A metallic polish
  • Black or white polish
  • Two shades of your chosen colour
  • Sponge
I use a make up sponge, but you can use any kind of sponge.  If you can't get your hands on any sponge at all, you could even used scrunched up bits of cling film or tissue.

Here's the step-by-step photo tutorial:


1. Prepare your nail as usual, and paint with your lightest polish (white or the lightest shade of your colour).

2. Tear off a little bit of sponge, and put a few drops of one of your other polishes on to some paper.  Dip your sponge in the polish and dab off the excess, then randomly sponge one or two areas of your nail.  The order you decide to sponge your colours in is totally up to you, and depends what sort of look you want over all - whichever colour you sponge last will be the most dominant.

3. Repeat with your next colour.  Use a fresh piece of sponge for each colour (you literally only need like a 5mm piece).

4. Add your final colour.

5. If you're not totally happy with the colour balance you've got on your nails, now's the time to go back in with a few little dabs of extra polish.  Sometimes I end up with one hand being a lot lighter than the other, so I add a bit more dark polish to one hand to even them up.

6. Clean up and add your favourite topcoat.  Sorted.

In keeping with well-established sponge-manicure tradition, here's a photo of my lovely doggy.


Friday, 22 March 2013

Angel Eye Flowers

Hello again my lovely readers :)

This is the first of the products I have to show you over the next week or so!  I was sent this silver nail art pen from the Born Pretty Store.


This is totally different to all my other nail art pens - it's literally just like a normal pen.  Sooo easy to use!  You just need to give it a little shake before you start.


I started with a base of China Glaze Man Hunt and Orly Angel Eyes (so much glitter...sigh).


I added some freehand flowers using the pen.  The nib is super fine - I went over these a few times to thicken the lines up so they stood out against the glitter, but you'll be able to get really fine detail with this.  And by the way, it's perfectly opaque without having to go back over it.


I didn't have to stop to reshake the pen or anything whilst I was doing this - the flow stayed perfect.  If you want the colour to come out a little faster, just pump the pen a few times.

Just in case you can't tell they're flowers, here's a close up!


 Added bonus by the way, in addition to being much easier to use than a normal nail art pen, these are water-based.  So that means that if you do make a mistake you can just wipe it off with water and not damage your polish!  These all have a coat of Seche Vite over as well, so as you can see it doesn't smudge :)

You can see this pen here (it's also available in other colours - this is colour 3).  It's $5.99 with free shipping worldwide.  I honestly think this is amazing, perfect for all your nail art needs!  I think I'll have to treat myself to some other colours...

Ooh and don't forget, whenever you buy anything from Born Pretty Store you can use this code for 10% off.

Monday, 18 March 2013

Flip Flop #28: Recreate your favourite day

I'm calling this another delicate manicure, just so that I eventually finish this challenge!  What I actually wanted to do was multicoloured half moons with China Glaze It's A Trap-eze, but I painted the China Glaze on and it never got any further than that...

Anyhoo, I wanted to show you a couple of my new polishes :)


This is OPI You're Such a Budapest from the new Euro Centrale collection mini set, topped with two coats of OPI Lights of Emerald City.

As usual, the purple is actually warmer than it appears here/  Seems ridiculous that my camera hates purple so much when it is itself purple...baffling.

The glitter was a little disappointing really...  It contains small iridescent (I have no idea if that's how it's spelt...) squares, as well as larger white squares.  The base is reeeaally thick.  I don't know if thinning it down with some Seche Restore would make it more manageable, or if it would just ruin the suspension base?  Advice would be appreciated!  The white squares were pretty difficult to fish out as well.  I do like the effect, I think it's pretty and quite unusual, but all in all a little underwhelming to be honest.

What do you think?  Do you have your eye on any of the polishes from either of these collections?

I have a few reviews coming up for you over the next week or two (one thing that I'm particularly excited about - it's going to change my freehanding life!) so watch this space.

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Flip Flop #27: Recreate someone else's

Yeah so we'll just ignore the fact that this was a February challenge from here on..only one more left to post though!

Whilst I was MIA, I reached 30000 pageviews and 200 followers, so thank you all!

Due to my indecisive ways, I used a random number generator to select a manicure to recreate or day 27 of the challenge (yes, honestly), and I ended up selecting this manicure from Organic Neglect.  This was for Lizajane's day 25 (inspired by a tutorial manicure).  I do actually have OPI Designer de Better, which Lizajane used, but I decided to go for something a little more subtle and work-appropriate (if leopard print is ever work appropriate).


I used two coats of China Glaze Elephant Walk, then added leopard print tips with a silver nail art pen (sorry, it doesn't show up very well!).  Speaking of elephants, we watched a documentary last night about a zoo and it showed an elephant giving birth, and oh my word!  That baby came out so quickly, I don't know how it even survived hitting the floor with that much force lol.

Sunday, 3 March 2013

Flip Flop #26: A Theme You Missed

The choices for day 26 were a theme you missed or your favourite polish.  Now, I can't possibly choose between all my little pretties, and I thought it would be more interesting to go for a theme I missed :)

Back on day...whatever it was...I decided not to do a stained glass manicure because I thought you needed jellies to do it.  It seems I was getting confused with a manicure that I think I saw on Chalkboard Nails?  So anyway, I decided to do a stained glass manicure for this day.


It's not the tidiest of manicures, sorry!  I used a base of Barry M Matt White so I could get away with one coat of all the stained glass colours.  I used China Glaze Man Hunt (I seem to be using this all the time recently!), Barry M Bright Red, Red Glitter, Lemon Ice Cream and Bright Purple, and Max Factor Bright Orange.  Then I used a black nail art pen to outline all the little panels of glass.

Only two days left, you never know I might even get this challenge finished by the end of March!

Flip Flop #25: Tape

Sorry! My boyfriend came home on Thursday, which you'll notice correlates rather well with my last post...whoops!  His presence isn't good for my blog lol.

Anyway, the choices for day 25 were Youtube Tutorial or Tape.  I said a few posts ago I might do a flame manicure using the needle drag technique, which I'd seen in a Youtube video a little while ago.  However, I had this idea for a subtle tape manicure that I wanted to try out, so the flame manicure will have to remain on my to do list!

I used Barry M Gold Foil on my index and middle fingers, then taped off the criss cross pattern with some striping tape, and used Sally Hansen Green Tea on top.  I used two coats of this on my other three nails, but I managed to get away with just one coat for these nails!  Then I applied a couple of studs just to finish the look off.

Here's a little glimpse of my right hand, because the taping turned out better here rather strangely.  Please ignore the mess of nail polish though, my left hand is not very gifted lol.