Thursday, October 31, 2013

Monster Mash Mani

Happy Halloween everyone!  And if you don't like Halloween, happy Thursday.  I really like Halloween but I'm the only one at work who cares!  I'm sporting orange and black today and a dark smoky eye but would totally dress up in costume if that was a thing here at work.  I heard Monster Mash on the radio this morning and honestly, that will probably be the best part of my day.  Although I will say the weather really got the message, it's dark, rainy, and spooky outside.

Today is the last of the Halloween type manis and I had so much fun creating all of the different looks.  I think in the end, my favorite ended up being the bloody vampire look, which you can see here if you missed it.  I went with something a little different today.  My inspiration was a fun colored monster, like something you would see in the movie Monsters, Inc.

To create this mani, I started with a base of OPI Yellowpalooza from the Halloween mini set.  I then created a gradient with OPI Jade is the New Black and finished off with an accent nail of Candy Lacquer Zombielicious.  If I could own all of the Candy Lacquers, I totally would :)  I love this glitter combination and think it paired well with the green gradient.

Although not your typical Halloween mani, I was quite pleased with the final look.  What do you think?  Do you have any fun Halloween plans, let me hear 'em!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Halloween Polka Dots

Hi everyone, welcome to Tuesday.  There's not much going here besides work being an absolute bear.  They just pile so much on me it's hard to handle.  I will be taking my frustrations out in spin class tonight though :)  Hopefully you are having a better week than me.  We are in the midst of yucky rainy weather. I love fall but obviously prefer the days that are clear, chilly, and crisp.

Today I have another Halloween mani to share with you.  I think I've done more nail art for Halloween then anything else this year.  There's just so many options to choose from.  I have at least one or two more planned for this week.  Today I am sharing the mani that I wore to Six Flags last weekend.  I've been on a really big polka dot kick and decided to do a polka dot skittlette.

The colors are the following:

Thumb: Essie Licorice dotted with OPI Stand In Lime for Days
Pointer: Essie The More the Merrier dotted with Essie Licorice
Middle: OPI The Drummer is Hot dotted with Essie Licorice
Ring: Essie Licorice dotted with Essie The More the Merrier
Pinky: OPI Stand in Lime for Days dotted with OPI The Drummer is Hot

I really loved the final look of this mani and I ended up wearing it for three days, which is a lot for me.  Are you dressing up for Halloween?  What are you going to be?

Monday, October 28, 2013

A Sweet and Girly Halloween-2 Manis+A Kitty

*Press Sample
Hi everyone, welcome to Monday.  I had a busy weekend, hence, no posts.  On Saturday, we went up to Chicago to celebrate my sister-in-law's birthday, which falls on Halloween.  We ended up going to Six Flags, where it was a brisk 40 degrees and windy.  I've never been to a theme park when it was cold but man was it chilly.  I am also deathly afraid of heights, yet I ended up on every roller coaster haha!  It was a good weekend but we didn't end up back home until dinner time yesterday.  

Today I have a set of manis that I did on Friday in anticipation of this week.  I've done the colorful side of Halloween (here), the monster side (here), and even the candy side (here), but I have yet to do the fun and girly side of Halloween.  Today I have just that!

I picked out a nail wheel full of 3D charms from Born Pretty Store.  Born Pretty is really my go-to store for nail art supplies for every holiday.  This nail wheel is item no. 5149, pattern no. 4 and it comes with 24 3D resin nail charms.  These include black and pink skulls, different colors of bunnies, and some charms that look like desserts :)  For my first look I used the black skulls that are sporting pink bows. 

I started with a base of OPI Midnight in Moscow and then mattified it.  I then freehanded the white chevron tip with Maybelline Color Show Porcelain Party.  I finished off with the skull.  I dabbed a little bit of clear topcoat on my nail and then placed the skull and let the topcoat dry.

Next up is a super girly mani!  I started with a color that feels like traditional Halloween to me...purple.  I used Essie The More The Merrier and added one coat of OPI Which it Witch?  I finished off with a pink bunny on my accent nail, using the same process as the first one.

And with keeping this post as sweet as can be, I give you one of the sweetest pictures of Lucy I have ever taken....well, because why not?  :)

I really enjoyed creating both manis from this nail wheel.  I think I captured the girly side of Halloween :)  This nail wheel is $4.27 and comes with 24 charms in 12 designs.  It can be found here.  Don't forget, you can receive an additional 10% off with my coupon code below!

Born Pretty Link

*Some of the items in this post were received in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, October 25, 2013

OPI German-icure by OPI: Swatches and Review

Hi everyone, yay TGIF!!!  I'm so glad today is Friday!  Yesterday was non-stop busy all day for me and I ended up going to bed at 9:30 last night.  I was too tired for nail art last night so today I wanted to show a simple swatch.  

If you've been following me, you'll know that I have a major love for OPI polishes.  I pretty much just want to collect them all :)  OPI is a brand I always fall back on because I love the shades so much.  Today I have German-icure by OPI which is a deep burgundy with subtle shimmer in a blackened base.  Oh man do I love this color.

This polish has so much glow and depth to it.  The formula was fantastic on this one.  I used two easy coats with topcoat.

What is your favorite OPI?

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Vivid Lacquer Stamping Plate Review: 9 Stamped Designs

*Press Sample
Hi everyone, welcome to Thursday.  Today is going to be an interesting day for me.  I will be part of a four-person interview team to interview candidates for our work section.  It will be my first time doing this and I'm excited and nervous at the same time.  Also, I don't know about you, but we seemed to have skipped Fall here in east-central Illinois.  Our weather went from 80's to 40's and this morning I woke up to sleet all over everything.  What happened to the 60's?  :)

Today I have my second Vivid Lacquer stamping plate review.  I've had a lot of fun designing different manis for each image on the plate, and am already in progress on the third plate.  I feel like my love of stamping has been renewed!

First up is my favorite mani of the bunch, I did not want to take this off!  I started with a base of a cool-toned purple, Zoya Maria.  I took the polish brush and then did some freehand stripes with OPI First Date at the Golden Gate.  I finished off with the plaid stamp using Essie Little Brown Dress.

Next up is the skull pattern, which is a full size pattern.  I started with a base of Essie Snap Happy and then taped a diagonal with painter's tape.  I then stamped the skulls over the tape with Essie No Place Like Chrome.

Next up is the X's and O's full-size pattern.  I started with a base of Revlon Brilliant Strength in Allure and then stamped with a mixture of OPI First Date at the Golden Gate with OPI I'm Indi-a Mood for Love.  I finished off with a coat of Spellbound Nails Fall in Love with a chevron in the two stamped colors.

Now for a look at the plate itself.  This plate comes with three full size designs and six small designs.  The designs include a parrot, a plaid design, a heart, X's and O's, an awareness ribbon, paw prints, a crown, skulls with crossbones, and a star design.

Below that is an example of the stamped images using OPI I'm Indi-a Mood for Love.  I had no problems with the stamping of the images, any missing color is purely user error!

Next up is another design that I really loved.  I started with a base of Zoya Natasha and then did a ruffian with Julep Cleopatra.  I finished off with different directions of cat pawprints in Essie Penny Talk.

For the hearts, I started with a base of OPI My Vampire is Buff and stamped the hearts with OPI Lost on Lombard and OPI Red Lights Ahead...Where?  I finished off with an accent nail in Essie Licorice with Sweet Heart Polish Jordan's A Star.

Another one of my favorites is the awareness ribbon, which has so many uses.  I didn't choose a specific foundation or color for the ribbons because I wanted to keep it generic.  I started with a base of Zoya Mason and stamped with OPI That's Berry Daring and Essie No Place Like Chrome.

Next up is the parrots.  I started with a base of OPI My Vampire is Buff and then did a chevron french tip with OPI On Her Majesty's Secret Service.  I stamped with OPI Dining Al Frisco and finished off with an accent nail of Ulta Indigo-go Girl.

Okay, next up I went with a theme of "Queen Bee".  I started with a base of Zoya Sara and taped off the ends using Essie Licorice.  I stamped the crowns with Essie No Place Like Chrome.  My accent nail is Essie Licorice dotted with Zoya Sara.

Last but not least is the star design, which ended up being one of my favorites.  I started with a base of OPI Lost on Lombard and then used OPI matte topcoat.  I stamped with OPI I Saw...You Saw...We Saw...Warsaw and finished with two coats of Ulta Indigo-go Girl mattified on my ring finger.

I hope you enjoyed these manis as much as I did!  Vivid Lacquer has really impressed me with the quality of the stamping plates and the versatility of the designs.  This plate can be found here.

*Some products in this post were sent in exchange for my honest review.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Halloween Skittlette!

*Press Sample
Hi everyone, happy Hump Day!  My first spin class went well yesterday, although it is hard to walk today :)  I enjoyed it though and plan on doing it again.  Balancing this new gym schedule and the blog has been a little difficult for me but hopefully the kinks will be worked out soon!  Oh, also, if you saw on facebook that I posted about one of my kitties going in to the vet yesterday, here's the scoop.  She was supposed to go in for a teeth cleaning but ended up having five teeth removed because they were broken and infected.  She is home and doing well and she even ate dinner last night and breakfast this morning.  She did need some extra mommy cuddles which I was happy to provide.  She even got a little sticker on her vet papers which I thought was super cute.

Today I have a skittlette of three of the four designs that I was sent by Incoco.  I did a full mani with the fourth design here.  The first design is an orange glitter background with different black haunted houses (Fright Night), the second is a glitter gradient from black to orange (After Dark), and the third is black and white ghosts that also glow in the dark (Spooktacular). 

I had no problems with the application of these strips.  I really love the new Halloween and fall designs, it's too hard for me to pick a favorite.  I think if I could narrow down my favorites they would be After Dark and Spooktacular, but I really did love all of them.

As I was trying to take a glow in the dark picture, I ended up with the shot below which seems pretty spooky to me.  It reminded me of scenes in scary movies when people are walking down dark country roads and then they see the headlights of a car on them from the killer that is trying to get them.  This was taken in my living room though :)

Overall I continue to be impressed by the quality and ease of these polish strips.  The four newest designs can be found at

*Products in this post were sent in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Black Sheep Lacquer: Heroine Hermoine

Hi everyone, welcome to Tuesday.  Today I have a polish that is extremely special to me, however I will get into that later.  I hope everyone is having a good week.  I am still continuing my fitness journey at the gym and maybe it's just me, but I feel like I'm already experiencing benefits.  I've been able to sleep at night without taking sleeping pills and made it through an entire work day yesterday without caffeine.  Woo hoo!  Tonight I have my very first spin class.  I'm going to the class with a friend but I'm still pretty nervous about it.  Have any of you ever done a spin class?

Back to the real reason you're here, the polish!  Back in July, Erin from Black Sheep Lacquer ran a contest where people got to come up with their own idea for a polish and the winner got their polish made and a complimentary bottle.  I believe two or three people were chosen and one of them was my idea for a polish based off of Hermoine from Harry Potter.  Harry always gets the spotlight and I wanted to feature Hermoine for a change.  I grew up reading Harry Potter and it has stuck with me ever since.  I've always had a soft spot for the bookish Hermoine, mostly because I was obsessed with reading as a kid and still love to read to this day.

Here is my idea for this polish, actually taken from the original email that I sent to Erin:

It's inspired by Hermione Granger from Harry Potter. It's a mix of brown (for her hair), maroon (for Gryffindor), black (for her robes), and micro glitters in browns and tans to represent books.

She also added a splash of gold and copper, which I think was perfect.  I really loved how this polish turned out, and even more proud that it came from my idea.  I layered one easy coat over Zoya Jacqueline.  

Below is a macro of all the glitter components.  You'll see my swatch doesn't have the large black glitters.  I didn't actually realize they were there until I was editing this picture.  I don't anticipate any problems getting them out in the future, I'll just turn the bottle upside down for about five minutes before I use it.

So what do you think of this polish creation?  Is it something you would wear?  I know that I absolutely love it and I want to thank Erin again for creating this polish.  

This polish retails for $10.00 for a full-sized polish and can be found on Etsy here.

Monday, October 21, 2013

OPI DS Opulence: Swatches and Review

Hi everyone, welcome to Monday.  This past weekend was pretty busy for me.  On Thursday I found out that I needed to go to Iowa last minute so my schedule got thrown off.  My sister got inducted into the national nursing honor society so I was happy to make the trek and go support her.  I got back home around lunch time yesterday and decided to be an animal at the gym and do an hour and fifteen minutes of cardio.  I got back home, realized how exhausted I was, and then didn't do anything the rest of the night :) 

Today I have a post that was supposed to go up Saturday, but I'm behind on editing photos so it's going up today.  Today I have my very first OPI DS polish.  I see these polishes in the store, with their shiny silver tops but always pass because of the price.  I happened to find this one on clearance at Ulta and decided to snag it up.  I couldn't decide if I loved the color at first but I'll give you the verdict later.

DS Opulence is a dusty mauve holographic pink.  The formula was very good and I have on two easy coats with no topcoat.  I had to wear this one for a few days but really ended up liking it.  Ultimately I wore this with black polka dots on top to give it an edge.  I'm glad I picked this one up because I think it's a very demure and sophisticated shade.

What do you think of this polish?  Do you own any OPI DS polishes?  If so, which ones?

Friday, October 18, 2013

Zombie Mani

Hi everyone, happy Friday.  TGIF!  My plans changed all of a sudden so I will be heading to Iowa today.  I most certainly took advantage and slept in :)  Today I have a fun mani that I've been looking forward to sharing all week.  I love the show The Walking Dead and I also read a lot of zombie books.  So, why not make some zombie nails?

To create this look I started with a base of China Glaze Budding Romance.  I sponged on various colors using Essie Licorice, Zoya Louise, Essie Sew Psyched, and Essie Merino Cool.  The next step was to zombie-fy my skin a little bit which I did by rubbing different shades of eye shadow in brown, green, black, and grey.

I then went outside and rubbed my hand in the dirt haha!  But that's really what I did :)  I added some "blood" by sponging and dabbing on Zoya Pepper and Zoya Livingston and then went and stuck my hand in the dirt again.

I love the way my zombie nails came out, kind of like a girl with a nice manicure all of a sudden turned into a zombie :)  What do you think?

Thursday, October 17, 2013

KKCenterHK Stamping Plate Review-2 Looks

 *Press Sample
Hi everyone, happy Thursday!  It feels good to get closer to Friday.  I made it to the gym for the second day in a row yesterday and I feel good about it.  I did weights and cardio but the most interesting thing to happen was that the lady next to me on the stationary bike was eating peanut m & m's while she was cycling.  I have yet to figure that out!  I mean seriously lady?  You couldn't have finished them before you got to the gym?  

Anyways, today I have another stamping plate review for you, this time from KKCenterHK, which is an online shop with nail art supplies.  I also received a small stamper to go with this stamping plate.  The stamper is small but covered all of my nails.  The thing I really like about it was that it came with a scraper made of plastic.  I had been using an old credit card as a scraper because I had heard the metal ones can scrape the plates.  I really liked having a dedicated scraper to use. 

Above is an image of the plate I chose.  The stamp includes cat stamps, striped stamped, and several full size stamps in some tribal prints and one that looked like a knitted sweater to me.  The plate is item no. NNAIL-SPPQA11 and can be found here.  Below I created two different looks with this plate, one everyday mani and one seasonal mani.

First up is the everyday look I created.  I started with a base of OPI DS Opulence and created black polka dots with Essie Licorice.  I finished off with the top striped stamp which has lines and little swirly circles.  I stamped the silver with Essie No Place Like Chrome.

Below is my seasonal mani which I wanted to look like a glitzy holiday sweater.  Underneath the stamp is a base of OPI Peace & Love & OPI with the blue glitter polish Ulta Indigo-go Girl.  I stamped the sweater pattern on with Essie No Place Like Chrome.

I was very happy with this stamping plate and I think it offers a lot of versatility with the images that it includes.  I can see using this stamp year round to create fun manis.  I had no problems with the images transferring or stamping and was very happy with the quality.  This plate retails for $4.55 and can be found here.  You can receive an additional 10% off with the coupon code "paintthosepiggies".  Have a great day everyone!

*This post contains a product that was sent for review in exchange for my honest opinion.