Holo Nails!

I was blogging about some rings over on my accessories blog, Bedeck, and I was asked about my nails. It seemed like the perfect subject to cover over here, too.

The base color is Zoya Song, which in itself is a beautiful blue color. The sparkle and dazzle, however, is from Orly. It’s called Be Brave, and it’s from their Pretty in Pink collection, which supports breast cancer research.

It’s a pink and blue holo bar glitter, but when light hits it, it’s all sorts of beautiful colors. It’s a little tougher to remove, but if you drench a cotton ball in remover and leave it on the nail for a minute or two, it comes off pretty easily. Plus, there’s very little tip wear; it will last a long time.

I’m really excited about the happenings over at Bedeck, so come visit me over at BedeckMe.Wordpress.com!

BOGO, Emphasis on the GO.

Once upon a time, I said that I would lay off talking about Zoya polish. We all know that’s not going to happen. I can’t stop. Now they have jellies, and frequently they have sales. And right now they’re having both. BOGO sale for those with an existing account! Here’s what’s on its way to Casa Freya:

More Zoya

The polishes are Ray, Song, Monica, Toni, Noot, Paloma, Katherine, Harley and Yara. Obviously fall and winter are on the way, based on my color choices.

My friends say I have an addiction. I guess there are worse addictions to have…

Ben-Day Dots

Today, I’m all about the spots and dots.

It started with the decision to do a stamping manicure on white. It evolved into nails reminiscent of Roy Lichtenstein’s paintings, which use dots (called Ben-Day Dots, I learned).

I was also thinking that polka dots are a fresh summer look! You can have dots on anything from sunglasses to sweet summer dresses. I put together a few of my favorite dotty pieces.

Dotty!

Looking at what’s out there, I could have done the whole post with black and white polka dot pieces, but I wanted to throw in a variety of colors. What do you think? Dots in classic black and white, or dots in color? Or no dots at all?

(I’m pretty sure the Talbot’s dress above is the same one Amy Sedaris wears in the Downy Unstopables commercial. Only I think the neckline was re-done.)

Rainbow Nails!

Oh, Zoya.

The fantastic thing about Zoya (well, one of them) is the amazing promotions they have. I never can say no. Especially to the really good ones, like a buy 3, get 3 sale. Which happens to be going on now.

As soon as I heard about it, I went to the site and started picking out my polishes. As I checked out, I noticed something interesting about my color choices:

Zoya Rainbow

Is it a spring rainbow, or what? I can’t wait to get my new spring colors!

Go take advantage of the promotion! It lasts until Wednesday night, March 14 at 11:59 p.m. EST, so act fast! Enter the code SPRING3 in the promotion code box to get your discount.

(Oh, and this is my first yellow polish ever! I am both fearful and hopeful. We shall see!)

I Found the Line…RIGHT After I Stepped Over It.

I have been wanting a polish with some major bling to it for the festive holiday season. On impulse, I picked up a bottle of Essie’s A Cut Above.

This polish is bright pink with huge pieces of glitter in it. The first thing I noticed was the smell. The overwhelming smell. I’ve been using Zoya for so long that I am not used to the strong chemical smell of other polishes. Also, the technique is a little different–you kind of pat it on with the brush instead of smoothing it on to get maximum glitter dispensation. Other than that, it worked fantastically.

I wasn’t quite sure what to put it over, so I started with something contrasting–I grabbed my Zoya Dove (which is grey) as its companion piece on its maiden voyage. I got some compliments. It looked good.

Then I tried again, and I decided that I’d match, instead of contrast. I picked up my Zoya Emme as the best match. Now, the polish is close to Barbie pink to begin with, with a slight pearlized sheen. It’s walking the fine line for someone no longer in their teens to start with. But then you put glitter on it, and BLAM! It’s mutton dressed as lamb time. In other words–totally inappropriate. TOTALLY.

The evidence:

(The middle finger is Emme unglittered. The cotton wool threads are because I was already trying to take the stuff off. Glitter is a beeyotch to remove!)

So my conclusion is this: yes, I can wear glitter on my nails. But the trick to make it a little more sophisticated is to use a creme polish in a contrasting color. Especially if you have bright pink glitter.

Anyone else have hard lessons that they’ve learned that they can share?

Also, you better have entered my giveaway!

November Birchbox Review

I finally got around to reviewing my products from my November Birchbox. It was a pretty good month. But I still wish I got that pop rocks chocolate some people got in their box instead of paper letterpress coasters.

And here are the letterpress coasters I was talking about:

Note that I hiccuped at the end, but didn’t bother to edit it out. I was nearly done, so couldn’t be bothered.

Rainbow Shatter

How cute are my nails today?

I don’t think the pictures do it justice, actually. I was inspired by a video post on Refinery 29.

I used OPI’s black shatter polish with three Zoya polishes underneath: Zoya Rica (a sparkly coral), Zoya Brooke (a fuchsia shimmer), and Zoya Lisa (a sparkly red). Easy and fun!

Test Drive: OPI Silver Shatter & China Glaze Crushed Candy

After my failed attempts at picking up a bottle of OPI Silver Shatter right after the Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides collection came out, I finally got a bottle! Ulta had a shatter display with all the different colors of OPI shatter. Except they were sold out of turquoise shatter. I got a bottle of the silver, and, on a whim, got a bottle of China Glaze Crackle Glaze, too.

All the colors in the Pirates collection are pastels, so I decided to lay down a pastel base coat and cover it will silver shatter. I used Zoya’s Marley, a pale purple shade. I put the silver shatter over it, and it just read as silver. I couldn’t really see the purple underneath.

I wanted more contrast, so I started over again. I wanted a color that was vivid, but still summery. I decided to try again with Zoya Brooke, a deep pink duochrome shimmer.

I really liked the outcome. The silver was visible, and went well with the pink. The silver shatter was more glittery than I expected, judging on the black shatter, I thought it would be more matte. But I like it even better than the black! It is a fantastic effect.

Even though my polish was holding up, a couple days later I decided I wanted to try the China Glaze. I started with a base coat of MAC Formidable, which was a limited-edition polish in the MAC Venomous Villains collection last year. It is a deep plum with a turquoise glitter in it.

Then I added the China Glaze Crushed Candy topcoat, which is a light turquoise blue. I’m finding that the secret to crackle topcoat is just to go quick and not to worry about how messy it looks. It starts to dry almost right away, so if you take too much time, it reduces the crackle effect. If you want lots of crackle, go for a thin coat. If you want a little crackle, paint on a thick coat.

I went with a thick coat.

Excuse the fact that this is totally not cleaned up.

And, being fickle, I did not like it, removed it, and started over. It’s my way.

Second time I decided to go with Zoya’s Akyra, a metallic teal shimmer, and a thin coat of Crushed Candy.

And…I kind of liked it! Enough to stop breathing nail polish fumes for the day.

In conclusion: I like OPI Silver Shatter better than China Glaze Crushed Candy; the sparkle makes it look a little less lumpy. Also, thin coat over thick coat. I also tried out Orly’s Top 2 Bottom base and topcoat, which seems to work very well.

Tried any other shatters lately? Tell me about your test drives!

Wednesday GOTS! The Birthday Edition

Happy Birthday to me!

Today I went shopping to buy myself a couple of little presents. So instead of wanting, I’m getting!

You may wonder, out of all the stuff I love and recommend on this blog, how much do I actually own or buy? The answer, sadly is VERY LITTLE. I’m never going to be able to be one of those bloggers who take pictures of themselves in designer clothes on a city street in a hip neighborhood. I don’t have that kind of scratch, people. I’M A TEACHER. But this blog has been kind of dangerous; I’ve bought some things because I just fell in love with them.

I’ve already mentioned stuff I already love and use, like Capri Blue Soy Candles, Tokyo Milk, NYX Cosmetics, and Zoya nail polish. Due to this blog, I’ve bought MAC products from the Tartan line and the Jeanius collection. I got the Jonathan Beauty Water Filter and the ModCloth smart phone driving gloves for Christmas. And I actually bought the Who’s That Girl dress from my first One Dress, Four Ways post. And it didn’t fit, and I had to return it. Sadness.

Today for my birthday I put my money where my mouth is, and bought some stuff that I’ve been wanting. First up, I bought the Black Shatter polish from OPI. I tried it with the hot pink Lolly polish from Zoya, and it looks awesome. I also was a good blogger and informed the counter girls at ULTA about the coming of more shatter polishes. They didn’t know.

ULTA has Zoya! Only the Intimate Collection, but I wanted to encourage them to continue to stock the line, so I felt the need to be supportive. So I bought the very last Marley in the store. It actually didn’t have a label on it; I had to look it up online to know the name of the color.

I headed over to Sephora, more out of need than want. I was nearly out of foundation. I realized that I said I used Korres Watermelon Tinted Moisturizer, but I realized I actually use the Korres Ginger &Vitamins Foundation. It’s all good. (Although secretly I wish I liked the Rosewater Foundation formula better, because it smells beautiful.)

I often offer up Forever 21 as a good place for inexpensive accessories and up-to-the-moment styles. I did a little style scouting there, and came up with this bag that I LOVE.

And for only $18! The only drawback is that the zippers on each side actually have no pockets underneath them. They’re purely decoration; you couldn’t even fit a pencil in there. I’d kind of like a pocket, but oh, well. The only problem with shopping in Forever XXI is that there’s a distinct possibility that I’ll run into one of my students there. Which I did. But when she saw the bag in my hand, she said “You have such great style, Ms. M!”

And isn’t admiration one of the greatest birthday presents of all?