Manicure Monday: The Thing About Mermaids

Happy Monday! Today’s look is all about Lynnderella‘s The Thing About Mermaids. It’s my first time using this limited edition polish, and I feel like I don’t give my Lynns enough love, so I’ve dedicated this week’s nails to this one. I’m wearing one coat of The Thing About Mermaids over two coats of Orly’s Teal Unreal.

The Thing About Mermaids is incredible. It’s a monochromatic teal glitter mix, save for the silver starfish-shaped glitters that are a stark holo silver. It has every great glitter shape: the starfish in both silver and teal, hearts, triangles, lighting bolts (which were new at the time, I remember), flowers, and then some good old squares in hexes in varying sizes. This polish is just so shiny, and looks incredible over Teal Unreal. I’m kind of in love with this mani.

Teal Unreal helps make this look a success. I wanted a creme that was exactly the same shade as the glitter, and I think I got pretty close. Because it’s so close, I got the cohesive and sparkly look I wanted.

All the other photos were taken in cloudy conditions outdoors. The sun came out so I could get this one!

The Thing About Mermaids was a limited edition polish; other Lynnderellas are sold on lynnderella.com, Amazon, and eBay. Orly polish are sold in stores.

I bought these polishes myself.

Manicure Monday: Bless This Glitter Mess

Happy Monday, reader! I’ve got another messy glitter mani to share, because I can never say no to glitter. This is Lynnderella‘s Unicornament over a Maybelline vintage mystery polish.

I’ll start with Unicornament, since it’s clearly front and center in this look. This is probably my favorite-ever Lynn, because there’s so much happening in it. All that color, glitter, shapes, and bling in an iridescent base, it’s irresistible.

I felt a little bad covering the base polish up, because it really is a nice polish. It’s a warm pink — or cool red, I can’t tell — with silver flecks. I’ve had this polish for at least ten years, and believe it or not, it still applies really well. It could have done with some thinner, but it wasn’t thick enough that I thought it was necessary. I’ll have to do another look with it soon so that it gets its due.

Maybelline polishes are sold in stores. Lynnderella polishes are available on their website, Amazon, and eBay.

I bought these polishes myself.

Manicure Monday: Radiant Gradient (What’s Green is Gold is Green Again)

Happy Monday, reader! I have to preface this post by stating that I’m aware this isn’t my best work. I’m new to using nail vinyls and I’m still learning how to use them. I thought I’d given my polish enough to time to dry, but the vinyl still pulled a lot of it up, and I tried to paint it back on, and that’s why it’s a little messy. If any of you are seasoned nail vinylists, give me your tips! Anyway, for this look, I used a base of China Glaze’s Rare and Radiant, and the gradient is Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s Too Many Misters and We’re Vincible. The vinyl is the Zig Zag Zip design from Ribbits Stickits.

I started with the base of Rare and Radiant. I love this polish because it has such a dramatic shift, but I always have a hard time using them as a base for nail art because of it. It’s always easier to throw some glitter on top, which was what I almost did, but I decided to challenge myself. I almost feel a little bad for covering it up.

Working my way through my Indie Shop haul has been fantastic. I’m trying so many new things! I’m trying not to use my vinyls up right away, but I’m really excited about having them. I’m just going to need to get better at using them. I was sure an hour between applying the base and sticking the vinyl on would be enough; that’s how long I wait when I use Scotch tape and I rarely have my polish come up with that. I’ll do better next time for sure. My gradient turned out well, at least. BEGL cremes are becoming my new favorites!

China Glaze is sold in stores; this bottle is from Sally Beauty Supply. BEGL polishes are sold in their online shop, which is currently on hiatus. Ribbits Stickits vinyls are available on their website.

I bought these products myself.

Manicure Monday: Desert Gradient

Happy Monday, reader! I’ve been in the mood for nail art, so here’s some nail art! And really I mean that I finally remembered to buy some sponges so I can do some gradients. I’ve missed them! For this look, I used Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s Thrill Me to the Marrow (pale pink) and Robo-Aggression (gray), Pepper Pot Polish‘s The Big Fuzz (peach), and Elevation Polish‘s Sample JY #26 (glitter).

For the gradient, I put down two coats of Thrill Me to the Marrow, then started a three-color gradient, only my nails are too short for three colors to really show up. You can see there’s a faint bit of coolness at the bottom near the cuticle that immediately fades into warmth from The Big Fuzz. In a way, it actually turned into something cool, but I’m still a little sad it didn’t get more visibility. The Big Fuzz and Robo-Aggression worked pretty well here; the peach was a little on the sheer side and I worried about how well it would show up, but it did the job. Robo-Aggression is a gray creme rockstar.

Sample JY #26 is the main polish I wanted to use, and it’s a pretty typical Elevation topper. I’m a huge fan of the metallic round glitters they use; they remind me of coins. The polish has three different colors of them: gold, silver, and copper, as well as black and white hexes and squares. It’s the perfect topper for this gradient.

The BEGL shop is still on hiatus, but plans to return soon. The Big Fuzz was an Indie Shop Atlanta exclusive; other Pepper Pot Polishes can be found in their etsy shop. Sample JY #26 was a prototype; other Elevation polishes are available in their online shop.

I bought these polishes myself.

Manicure Monday: Silver Splatter

Happy Monday! Over the weekend, I attended The Indie Shop Atlanta, and today, I’m not using any of the polishes I bought. I had a great time at the event, and I posted my haul photos on Instagram; I hope to get a more detailed post about the event up this week. For today’s look, I used Butter London’s Bumster, Essie’s Jiggle Hi, Jiggle Low, and Julep’s Braiden. I also used liquid latex for the first time today, more about that later.

Before I started today’s look, I really didn’t know where I was going with it until I started, I just knew I’d be using some silver over a nude base. Bumster is a great neutral; I’m a huge fan of these neutrals that lean a lit yellow or green, they’re just the slightest bit ugly. I wish I used these shades more.

I don’t know why I thought silver for this, other than I thought the shine and shimmer would look amazing with the neutral creme. I’m also not sure why I went for a splatter mani, but I kind of like where it went. I didn’t originally plan to use Braiden, but Jiggle Hi, Jiggle Low didn’t add enough contrast.

Here’s where the liquid latex comes in. Over the weekend, I bought my first bottle of the stuff from Ribbits Stickits. I put it around each cuticle and extended it down to my knuckle, because I’ve done this before and I know the mess it makes. I wasn’t a fan of the smell. I did a second coat, because I’d heard in passing that this makes it easier to peel off. It ended up sticking my fingers together and peeling off prematurely. Also most of the mess ended up getting on the parts of me that weren’t covered, like my palms and wrists. This was a messier-than-usual splatter, and got polish on everything on my desk, from my computer monitor, my phone, my clothes, you name it. Despite everything, liquid latex is the game-changer everyone told me it was going to be.

Butter London, Essie, and Julep polishes are sold in stores. Ribbits Stickits liquid latex is sold in their online shop.

I bought these polishes myself.

Manicure Monday: Purple Holo Romance

Happy Monday! This post is going up a little late. Today was my day off and I was lazy all day. There’s a lot of fun happening this week though; The Indie Shop Atlanta is this weekend, and I’m putting my mani together for that. I’m dying to go! I hope I’ll see some of you there, and I can’t wait to show off my haul. That said, let’s dive into my mani for the week! This is Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s Fare the Wind with Lynnderella‘s If the Shoe Fits.

Fare the Wind is way prettier than I remember it being when I swatched it three years ago. The purple is a nice mid-tone purple; it’s a strong shade, but the holo doesn’t overpower it, and the blue flakies in there don’t get lost. The sunshine overpowered it a little, but you can still appreciate it. I love this shade, and I love digging out shades that are a couple years old and were possibly forgotten about. In a community like ours, where we’re always excited about whatever new polishes are on the horizon, it’s important to shop our stashes and give love to polishes we have (she says, as she prepares to max her credit card out at TIS Atlanta).

This is actually the first time I’ve used If the Shoe Fits. I fell in love with it when I bought it, and then I forgot about it. I’m actually wearing it here over Fare the Wind, and it’s so shimmery that I didn’t need to wear it over anything. I’m a sucker for anything with heart-shaped glitter in it, so this was an easy buy for me. Can’t wait to use it again!

Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquers are available from their online shop; they’re currently closed, but will return soon. Lynnderellas are sold on eBay and their website.

I bought these polishes myself.

Manicure Monday: Reverse Monet

Happy Monday, reader! My look today is an experiment; I’m using a fan brush for nail art for the first time ever! I bought a cheap drugstore nail art kit just for the fan brush in it, and I’ve finally gotten around to using it. For this look, I used a faded bottle of Sinful Colors’s Dream On, Kleancolor’s Neon Orange, and Island Girl’s Aloha Paradise.

I started this look off with a good base of Dream On. Like I said, this polish faded dramatically. It was once a vibrant neon purple that became the coral you (kind of) see here. Even when I got this polish, I wasn’t a huge fan of it; it takes all of three coats to cover all the streaks and leaves behind a cheap-looking flat finish. I love Sinful Colors polishes to death but this one was never my favorite.

I originally didn’t include Aloha Paradise in this look, but ultimately, the look needed something for contrast. Dream On and Neon Orange are both on the sheer side; obviously the coverage builds, but for nail art, something with good coverage is ideal. It didn’t look like anything without the teal to liven it up. After that, I just kind of brushed the polish back and forth over the nail until I started getting dry brush strokes. It looks amazing up close like this when you can see the brushy details, but from far away, it just looks like a brown mess.

Sinful Colors and Kleancolor are sold in stores. I found Island Girl in Hawaii.

I bought these polishes myself.

Manicure Whenever: That’s What I Mint

Happy Wednesday! I planned to wear this polish on Monday for my Manicure Monday series, but my weekend look got irreparably smudged right after I finished, and being low on top coat, I decided just to go for the textured polish right away. I actually wore this polish from Saturday to Tuesday with minimal chipping. This is Nicole by OPI’s That’s What I Mint; I’m wearing three coats.

I was super impressed by how well this wore on me. I’m not one to wear a polish more than a day or two, and that’s largely because of how quickly it chips. One will chip and then I end up picking at it and all the others until there’s nothing left and I have no choice but to start over. I’m actually kind of proud of myself that I kept polish on for four whole days.

Nicole by OPI is sold in stores; I got this one from a Target clearance bin.

I bought this polish myself.

Manicure Monday: Light and Magic

Happy Monday, reader! Today’s look was an experiment in combining matte and glossy finishes to create some texture, and I think I did well. My polish here is Monster Polish‘s What’s Wrong With This Jumper?; I used Seche Vite for the glossy elements.

I swatched this polishes ages ago, and I swore that when I did a proper manicure with it, I would take advantage of its natural matte finish. It’s a beautiful polish either way, so I thought doing this would give it the best of both worlds; you get the most holo on the shiny parts, but the matte softens it. This is the kind of nail art this polish was meant for (though maybe not this execution).

Unfortunately, this has already started to chip. I should have used a coat of top coat before the last coat, and ultimately, before I added the nail art, but I’m running low and need to conserve what little I have. I definitely plan to try this again in the future with another beautiful matte polish.

In the shade. The contrast between gloss and matte is most evident here.

Monster Polishes are for sale in their online shop.

I bought this polish myself.

Manicure Monday: Rich Vintage

Happy Monday! Today’s look makes use of a vintage Maybelline polish that I’ve had since at least 2005. This is Tawny underneath Formula X for Sephora’s Out of Sight.

Tawny is a rich toffee brown creme. For a polish of its age, it actually applied quite well; the consistency was a little on the sticky-thick side, and was a little annoying to work with. I could have thinned it, but it wasn’t quite that bad. The worst thing was the shedding brush. It left quite a few strands on my nails, and I wasn’t able to get all of them off. I just put more polish on top of it.

Out of Sight is gorgeous. It’s super-blingy, and nearly blinded me in the sunshine. It’s also got some golden flakies in there. This polish has the same issues that all the shredded glitter toppers have with smoothness, and I talked about that a bit in last week’s post. This one is maybe ninety percent smooth with a few jaggies.

I bought these polishes myself.