Thursday, 11 October 2012

Nails Inc - Covent Garden Ballet and Black Roses

A manicure I did on a friend of mine and liked it so much I did it on myself, too. The sunshine is perfect to show off the pink-bronze shimmer in Nails Inc's Covent Garden Ballet. The black is Le Chat CM nail art - Black and the plate is Dkr-B

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Nails Inc 4 Piece A Listers Nude Collection

I was craving this set since I saw swatches of Covent Garden Ballet a few month ago and I got it at the asos sale for £15.50. What a bargain! Getting four great polishes for little over the price of one! 
First, it's Covent Garden Ballet shot through with a delicate grey with pink-bronze shimmer. It's adorable, what more can I say! We need more delicate beauties like this. 

Next is Ledbury Road, a metallic taupe colour that looks like two of my favourite eye shadows.
In the bottle it looked a lot like my Shu Uemura ME 860 (2nd generation) ...
...while on the nail it looks more like Shu Uemura Ir 850 (2nd generation). I love them both of course so I can't help liking the polish that gives me the rather odd opportunity to match my nails to my eyeshadow. 

Lower Sloane Street is a soft caramel nude cream. It's pretty, it's easy to wear and work appropriate. A nice basic colour.
And lastly there's Mayfair, a pearlescent off-white. Even though I'm not a huge fan of white, I like this one because it's not stark. It's a little bit muted to be stark and in spite of the pearlesence, there's not issues with brush strokes. The only problem I had with this was that it's a bit goopy, not goopy enough to complain though!

Friday, 14 September 2012

Comparison: Dark Blues and Dark Greens

This is one of the oldest comparisons I haven't published since the pictures were taken back in April so excuse the dry cuticles and not very smooth application. I wanted to get Mavala - 251 Cedar Green and Mavala - 247 Mosaic Blue for some time and when I finally got them, I discovered they were exact dupes of colours I already owned, O.P.I. - Here Today...Aragon Tomorrow and Ciaté - 3 am. Girl respectively. All four polishes are great and there's really minimal differences between them.

Mavala - 251 Cedar Green and O.P.I. - Here Today...Aragon Tomorrow are very dark greens. Both require 3 coats for full opacity, though they always retain a certain jelly-ness. Both have a small amount of shimmer in that is barely noticeable in the bottle, but keeps the polish from looking too flat on the nail. The only difference I noticed was that when used for stamping, Cedar Green's pigmentation was smoother.  
Mavala - 247 Mosaic Blue and Ciaté - 3 am. Girl are midnight blues, both require 3 coats for full coverage and, like the previous couple, they have a certain jellyness to them without being true jellies. Mosaic Blue has a bit of the shimmer like the other two, whilst 3am.Girl doesn't. Again the only marked difference was when I used them for stamping where Mosaic Blue is a little bit darker. 

artificial light

with flash

stamping (natural light)

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Greek Stories I: Seventeen - 533

As I mentioned previously, I am currently in Greece. I hadn't been in a beauty supply store in Greece in ages and when I did, I was taken aback by the amount of nail polish and brands available. I try to hold myself back and not buy everything I like and I regret not having taken my polish sample wheels with me to make sure I don't get any exact dupes as too often I find myself gravitating towards the same colours and the even the same hues.

Here is the first one I want to show you by a brand called Seventeen - no relation to the UK brand 17. As soon as I saw this deep glowing orange (at the lowest shelf no less!) I knew I had to have it. It's only the second orange polish I own, but it has become a firm favourite. It's so warm and beautiful it almost soothes me when I look at it. 

I know there is a similar orange by OPI in their Germany collection called Deutsch You Want Me Baby?, but I don't think they are dupes. I haven't had a chance to compare them side by side, but from what I've seen 533 is more vibrant and less red than DYWMB. It also stamps well as it is very pigmented, a very well behaved polish that took two coats for complete coverage with no brush stroke issues at all. What I did notice with Seventeen polishes in general is that they take a while to dry, but with a quick drying top coat it's all good. All in all, I love this autumnal beauty very much.

Let me know what you think of my pretty find!

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Stargazer 132: the Decadent Beauty

I haven't started a post with music in a while so here's some good ol'American Punk. Punk was never as big in the USA as it was in the UK, but Ain't it fun by the Dead Boys must be one of the best songs of the genre. 

Is the polish I have for you today punk-appropriate? I think it is. There's something unusual about Stargazer's 132; this decadent beauty is much more complicated than it looks in the bottle. Ιt is one of those indiscribable colours that seem to change a lot depending on the light and colours around it. It's a little bit metallic grey, a bit pale golden, it leans towards green, sometimes it looks delicare and others it takes on a rather industrial roughness. Stamping over it is always a pleasure as the results vary a lot depending on the colours you use. 

It's a sheer polish as it takes 3 good coats to reach full opacity (4 if you do thin layers) and come to think of it, I should try it over black. I am almost certain the results will be interesting!

This polish is definitely worth more of your attention!

direct sunlight

artificial light

sunshine (shade)

sunshine (shade) angle 1
sunshine (shade) angle 2
artificial light

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Tangerine, flowers, fun and a personal challenge!

It's been such a crazy time! A million things happened at once which is why I've been absent for so long. I am currently not in the UK, but in Greece visiting my family and checking out all the amazing new cosmetic products that have become available since I was here last. I know we are in the middle of a recession, but the Greek cosmetic companies seem to be blooming and I am so glad. You will be reading more on this as I review the products, before that though there's some things I need to get done.

Over the course of this year I've left so many manicures, comparisons and reviews unpublished. Additionally, my skills in doing my nails have developed quite a bit since I first started and anything I don't publish within a a month looks so bad to me after a while that I don't want to publish it. I've set myself a challenge: to publish all the neglected drafts I have by the time this blog turns 1 in a few days. It's a difficult challenge given that I blog in two languages (twice the fun!) and have very little time to do it at the minute, but difficulties make a challenge more interesting. Here it goes then!

Tangerine is such a fun colour! I'm glad it was this summer's colour. It's one of the very few shades of orange I like on me. This is a manicure I did a while ago using the polish I had mixed as a base, Miss Sporty - 455 for stamping and plates Dkr-b (floral deign) & Bundle Monster bm 201(stripes).

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Those Crazy Rainy Days of (English) Summer

Gosh, it's been so long since I found time to write a post, and even now it's going to be very brief! I wanted to post this mani that i made for the LDoS challenge ages ago. It's for day 11, Summer days. Well, all through the summer I don't think we've had a whole day where it didn't rain, so there you go!

Base colour: Borghese - Castello Blue, a very difficult to work with colour, but I did manage to make some 3D clouds with it because it's so thick.
Darker Clouds: konad m79 plate, Mavala - 218 Minsk with a little Olay - 680 Warm Platinum on top.

I hope you get a clear view of the full moon today!

Saturday, 11 August 2012

Lazy Days of Summer Challenge: Favourite Fruit

My favourite fruit is a type of grape that grows in Ancient Olympia, where my parents come from and where I spent every summer of my childhood (and yes, technically I am an Olympian,  though not so much of a godess). They are black seedless grapes and usually you can fbuy them sundried as currants, but I always preferred them fresh as they have a gorgeously sweet taste and their smell is intoxicatingly summery. I also love their texture. They look like they have this pale lavender dusting that if you touch it you see the deep purple of their skin. They are an aesthetic and gustatorial pleasure! Here is my attempt at it!

Monday, 6 August 2012

Fuchsias in the Garden

The fuchsias this season are glorious so it was a bit of a no-brainer what my 'In the Garden' manicure was going to be about!

Base colour: Etude House - GR605 
Stamping polish: LeChat CM - True Violet
Plate: Konad m83
Green leaves: Misa - The Grass is Greener on my Side
Flowers: OPI - Kiss me on my Tupils & LeChat CM - Royal Purple
A rare moment of sunny weather

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Dotting tool fun with Etude VIP Girl polishes

The seventh challenge in the Summer Challenge is Dotting Tool Summer Fun and fun I had. I really enjoyed making something this colourful. I don't usually use this many bright colours, but I really felt like making something cheerful today so out came my dotting tools along with the VIP Girl collection from Etude House and this is what I made!
Here is the full collection. Aren't they the cutest? From left to right they are: YL802, GR605, PK011, BL505 and PK012


Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Lazy Days of Summer Challenge Day 6: Pool Party

Yeap, we're on to day 6! Pool party! My inspiration for this is the pretty iridescent tiles you see in pools some times. The base colour is Mavala 167 Cyclades blue, one of my favourite summer blues, the tiles are China Glaze - Rodeo Fanatic and Oil of Olay  - Lagoon. I went around a few of them with white acriilyc paint and used Seche Vite on top. 

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Fleur-de-lys fun with A-England and Drk-B

This fleur-de-lys design was the design I was craving the most out of the Drikk Drk-B plate. And it goes do well with A-england - Order of the Garter!
natural light(indoors)
I leave you with some appropriate music!

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Lazy Days of Summer Challenge Day 5: Your favourite Towel

Time for the fifth day of the Lazy Days of Summer Challenge and the theme is 'your favourite towel'. Beach towels are supposed to be nice and colourful and fun, but I have none of those here since I never go to the beach. That leads to my next confession: when it comes to regular towels I prefer them to be all white because they look more pristine that way. On the other hand, I dislike using a lot of white polish cause it looks too stark. What is a girl to do now? 

I decided to do french-type manicure and -for the record- this is my first ever white-tipped french mani. I used 2 coats of my beloved Color Club - Oh My Versailles, then I stamped it with white Konad polish and Bundle Monster plate BM11, did another coat with Oh My Versailles to soften the white, topped it off with Seche Vite et voilà!
natural light (overcast OF COURSE, this is a british summer!)

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Andrea Fulerton - Mischa

One of my recent purchases is this beautiful polish, Andrea Fulerton - Mischa. I have to admit, nailblogging has changed my tastes a bit and now I am more open to trying out different textures. A year ago I would have picked this up, looked at it, perhaps admired it and then promptly reject it as a 'glitter'.

Truth is I love it though. It's complex, it's easy to remove (I'm always worried about that with glitters) and it's a beauty. The base is a greyish blue as you can see in the paper swatch photo and it's packed with asymmetric microglitter in gold, gunmetal and blue, but you do catch glimpses of other colours as well. It applies nicely and I did three coats for this swatch. Depending on the light it can look anything from light metallic blue to deep gunmetal Unfortunately the edge suffered a bit of shrinkage due to the Seche Vite I used.
natural light(overcast)
close up on the nail
close up of the paper swatch under incandescent light
You can also see it on Eva Green where it was used for her recent InStyle (Uk) photoshoot.

Monday, 23 July 2012

Geta Flip Flops

My fourth entry for the 'Lazy Days of Summer"challenge, the flip flops. This was a real challenge as I really don't like flip flops. I went for something more traditional than flip flop and west for a geta-like design. The base colour is Etude House Matte 1 - Black tea.

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Mavala 167 Cyclades blue and Nautical Flags

For my 'flag day' theme of the Lazy days of Summer challenge I decided to not do the obvious thing and go for a national flag, but instead go nautical. The first time I found out about this peculiar nautical language was when I was little and watching MacGyver on tv. It's a pretty colourful way to communicate, isn't it? You can find all of the flags here

This is actually my second attempt to do this challenge. The first one was so much of a fail I had to re-do it. I decided to do it with acrylics using my left had, just to get a bit of practice. The base colour is Mavala 167 Cyclades Blue. It doesn't get more summery than the blue colour of the Cyclades islands! I hope you like it!

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

My Summer Ombre: Red to Yellow

This is my 2nd day entry for the Lazy Days of Summer challenge, my summer ombre. Summer should ideally be hot so I chose hot, fiery colours for my ombre.

I did cheat a little bit though as I used three nail polishes instead of two. The red(thumb) is Creative Nail Design #431 House of Rebels, the orange (middle) is a custom mix I created last year when orange polishes were not as popular and the yellow is from Etude House.>

The pictures came out a bit funky coloured and I have no idea why. I tried to correct the colours a little bit, but I kind of like it. It looks a bit retro!

Monday, 16 July 2012

Rachel Weisz's Evanora Manicure: Wicked Love!

The other day I saw this amazing picture of Rachel Weisz as the wicked witch Evanora for the upcoming film Oz the Great and Powerful; she's so beautiful! Of course I also noticed her fabulous manicure and I simply had to replicate it asap. 
The problem was that I had to file my nails short on my left had (the one you usually see) because I broke a nail and the manicure would look really wrong on short nails. The ones on my right hand were a bit longer though so I decided to take the plunge and try it out. Excuse the imperfections, I am not that skilled at doing designs with my left hand!
The off-white base is 3 layers of Color Club - Oh My Versailles!, the black polish is Bourjois - Noir de Chine. I did the iridescent details using a nail foil in the design Opal Swirl topped with Seche Vite. Nail foils are my latest craze, especially this opal one. I find the colour swirls mezmerizing! I wasn't sure if it is a thin stripe of foil or a nail polish that they used on Evanora's nails, but I thought it would look more interesting like this.

I hope you like it!
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