Manicure Monday: Smoky Marble

Welcome back to Manicure Monday! Full disclosure, I’m not super happy with these photos, but because I love how this marble turned out, I’m posting it. It’s been raining here for a week straight, and even though I was in the middle of washing dishes, I had to take advantage of a brief moment of sunshine. My nails are wet and flat here, the tips of the nails are all chewed up-looking because I didn’t do a great job trimming, but I’m happy enough with the result to post it. My polishes are Enchanted Polish‘s October 2014 and Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s Niagara Sunrise.

I paired these two because they both have a strong and warm shimmer that complements the other. October 2014 has this lovely olive shift, where Niagara Sunrise’s is a soft but fiery orange. October 2014 also benefits from being a holo. These two have so much dimension on their own, and some of that gets lost in this marble, but I’m happy with how it turned out.

I did a dry marble for this. I poured a thin stripe of each polish onto a Ziploc bag, marbled them together with a dotting tool, then let it dry overnight. I tweaked the drip marble method a bit; as cool as drip marbles are, I feel like marbling it with a tool gives me more control over the way the colors mix. By the time I’ve gotten what I want with a drip marble, the colors are so blended together I can’t tell them apart.

Enchanted Polishes are sold on their website. Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquers are sold in their online store.

I bought these polishes myself.

Manicure Tuesday: Frosty Blue Glitter

Happy Tuesday, reader! I meant to post this yesterday, but I had the day off and went swimming with friends. That’s also the reason this mani looks a little chewed-up, I forgot to take the pictures before I got in the pool. In any case, here’s a gradient I did with First Frost and The Years Have Been Short, both from Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer.

First Frost is still one of my favorite BEGLs, and I was super excited about using it. It was one of the first BEGLs ever made, and one of the first indies I ever bought. I adore this polish, and I loved using it this week.

The Years Have Been Short is like a grown-up version of First Frost, if you’re into that. The glitters aren’t as chunky, but the white crelly base and the glitter colors are pretty similar. This was why I paired them up; I wanted a look that was only slightly different, but still very cohesive.

First Frost and The Years Have Been Short were both discontinued by Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer; other BEGLs are available from their online store.

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.

The Indie Shop Atlanta 2018 Coverage

It’s that time again: time for me to cover an event two weeks after it happened. If you follow me on Instagram, you saw that I went to Atlanta for the eighth installment of The Indie Shop, and saw some friends and toured some of my and my boyfriend’s regular haunts. You also saw I posted a huge haul, and I’ll talk about that in detail in a second. For now, though, the show.

Packing!

My manicure. This is a drip marble done with Digital Nails‘s Island Sunset, Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s Peruvian Lily, Chaotic Glitz‘s Mythological Mushroom, Ever After‘s Peach Fuzz, and Philly Loves Lacquer’s June Bug.

Boyfriend and I drove up from Florida, which was a good five hour drive. We arrived around nine o’clock at night, and enjoyed a few cocktail and a pupu platter at Trader Vic’s. We always stay at the Hilton downtown just to go to this bar. This was the view from our room. It was a beautiful night.

This year’s Indie Shop was a little smaller than last year’s event with fewer vendors. Returning brands include Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer, Poetry Cowgirl, Turtle Tootsie, Chaotic Glitz, Crystal Knockout, Envy Lacquer, Ribbits Stickits, and Ever After. Fewer brands meant fewer booths, but since the turnout was really strong, every booth was busy the entire time I was there, which was awesome to see.

My first stop was Bee’s Knees Lacquer, since I was acting as a polish fairy for a couple of people after their event exclusive trio. This table was probably the busiest one; I had to wait ten minutes just to get the table, and another fifteen just to check out. I’d heard a lot of buzz (intended) around this brand, but I couldn’t believe how popular they were in Atlanta. They also win best shirt.

The line

I bought my first-ever vinyls from Ribbits Stickits! I meant to hit them up last year, but issues with my credit card kept me from it. I met Kayla from Creative Cuticles at this booth, only I didn’t realize it was her until later. We live in the same city, and I thought it would be cool to run into her sometime. Some fan I am.

Crystal Knockout’s booth was one of my favorites from last year, and I was excited to see them come back. I love these guys because they always bring tons of jewelry with them. Honestly, I was more excited about their earrings than their polish. I got like five pairs.

They weren’t the only ones selling non-polish items. Wax melts were hugely popular with makers, as were handmade bath and body products. Turtle Tootsie Polishes brought back their amazing sugar scrubs, as well as some bath bombs and lip balms.

Smokey Mountain Lacquers was a newcomer to The Indie Shop. I think I met the maker last year working for another booth, but her setup was great, and I completely forgot to photograph it. Sorry, Kim!

Envy Lacquer was another table I didn’t get to hit up last year, so I made up for it this year by buying pretty much everything they had. I got the entire Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil collection and the exclusives.

I think this is the point where I got too busy shopping and forgot to take pictures of the actual booths. The Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer table was another busy one, and I spent the most time here, as well as the most money. I even went back for a second round when I got a coupon. I’ve been behnd on my BEGL new releases, I had to catch up!

Every table was crowded like this one. It was hard to get in just to shop. let alone photograph.

Satnin was a new-to-me brand, and though they didn’t have a lot of polish, I was impressed with the ones they did. They had a lot of multichromes and I bought all of them.

Ever After was another table I couldn’t get enough of. I’d seen swatches of their O-pal-leeze collection online, but seeing the polishes in person pretty much guaranteed I was going to buy all of them. Between those and the exclusives, I got a ton of polish there. Incidentally, none of them are shown in the photos I took of their booth.

I love Poetry Cowgirl Nail Polish. Another Florida brand, they had with them a handful of exclusives, some leftover exclusives from previous shows, and previews of some box exclusives. I spent a lot here, and they gave me some freebies, too!

Chaotic Glitz was another table I couldn’t wait to get to. I loved their exclusives last year — I worked one into my TISA manicure this year — and maker Meagan and I have been in touch on Instagram the entire time. I love these guys!

Another booth I failed to capture entirely was Pepper Pot Polish. They were the last one I went to, and at this point, I was exhausted. I did so much shopping! The maker here said she underestimated how much inventory to bring with her, and had sold a lot of it by the time I got there; one of her exclusives was completely gone, and she was kind enough to take preorders for it at the show. I love when makers do that.

After I left here, I met up with my boyfriend in Decatur. We hit up some bars, got some food, and did some more shopping. I love Decatur, it’s such a fun and unique little place. Sunday morning, on a chilly, rainy day, we headed back to Florida.

Now, onto the haul! Not including the preorders and other things I had shipped to me, I ended up taking home 111 bottles of polish. This includes everything in the VIP bag. I got something from every booth, which I’m kind of proud of. Last year, I felt rude chatting up makers without buying anything from them. This year, I got to meet everyone and had a great time doing it. I can’t wait to go back next year!

Trying to carry all of this out of the hotel was a chore. I had to get a second tote bag. And, of course, I thought it wouldn’t be that bad to carry it all around with me while we hung out in Decatur.

My arms were sore the next day.

The VIP bag contained polishes from makers who didn’t attend the event, like Savannah Lacquer, Pretty Beautiful Unlimited, and Colors by Llarowe,

Here’s a photo of my little Decatur haul. I have been obsessed with handmade local goods lately, and so I picked up a lot of handmade jewelry and things at Homegrown Decatur. Those giant seashell rings are from Kismet Jewelers. They’re both amazing shops, and they’re right next door to each other, so you don’t have an excuse to not visit them both.

And that’s it! See you next year, Atlanta!

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: 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.

Swatch: Enchanted Polish’s Ice Castle

Hey! It’s another swatch this week! Let me preface this one by saying that this is not my best work, and I’m aware that these photos are not up to my personal standards. The day I took these, it was cloudy outside, and I’m not great at getting a good holo shot indoors except for under certain lights, and well, this is what happened. This is Enchanted Polish‘s Ice Castle; I’m wearing three coats alone and two coats over Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s Lighthouse on the Lake.

Ice Castle is a sheer holo topper with blue-to-purple shifting pigment. Application was good; the polish is super easy to use, has a great consistency, and the holo effect is actually pretty strong in the right lighting. It gets good coverage at three coats, though it is still quite sheer. I used top coat for shine.

This isn’t a swatch as much as it is a reminder that this polish exists. I feel like it’s a pretty ubiquitous polish, a common one to find in any indie polish collection, but I never see anyone using it. If you have it in your own collection, consider this a challenge to get it out and use it. If you don’t, use something you’ve had for a few years. I want to see your oldies!

Ice Castle and other Enchanted Polishes are available in their online shop.

I bought this polish myself.

Manicure Whenever: Double Purple

Welcome back, reader! I have an old Manicure Monday that I never got around to posting. This must have been done around Christmas, when I was hellishly busy at work. For this look, I used Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s 2014 and Siren’s Quarter Life Crisis.

Remember 2014? I barely do. I remember buying this polish, though! This is a sheer purple with a strong shift, as well as some iridescent glitters throughout. The shift doesn’t come out so well in bright sunlight, but it’s definitely there. I love the glitters in there the most, it’s what sets the polish apart from other shifters.

Siren’s Quarter Life Crisis was a holiday gift-with-purchase polish from I don’t even know how long ago. Clearly, I’ve been buying BEGL a long time. This was the first GWP, I think, and it was a pretty small batch, being capped at 15 bottles. I picked this to go with 2014 because the primary colors are pretty close; one adds color than sparkle to the look, while the other does the opposite. I think it turned out pretty well.

Neither of these polishes are still available from Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer, but other BEGL polishes are available in the online shop (which is currently on hiatus).

I bought 2014. The Siren was a gift with purchase.

Swatch: Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer’s Cotton Candy Clouds

Welcome back to another swatch! I have to admit, I miss my regular posting schedule, but now that I work weekends almost exclusively, I just get them done when I can. Swatch Tuesday doesn’t have the same ring as Swatch Saturday, I have to admit. Anyway, this is Cotton Candy Clouds from Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer, an Addicted to Holos box exclusive. I’m wearing three coats with one coat of Seche Vite.

Cotton Candy Clouds is a pale lavender holo with green shimmers. Application was pretty typical for a BEGL holo; the formula is designed to be opaque in as few coats as possible, and this one definitely does; I got an almost-opaque first coat and the second was enough to even it out. The holo isn’t too strong because the base is so well-pigmented, but it’s definitely there, as is the green shimmer. The polish dries to a smooth and somewhat glossy finish; I used top coat for shine.

I miss the Addicted to Holos box. So many amazing polishes came from that box, and since they haven’t posted since 2016, I’m guessing it’s been shelved. There are so many boxes now, as well as the Polish Pickup, that a lot of these smaller ones got squeezed out, which is sad. I’m especially sad because it was one I bought routinely.

Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer polishes are available from their online shop; the shop is on hiatus while the maker is on maternity leave.

I bought this polish myself.

Manicure Monday: Glitter Crack

Happy Monday, reader! Remember crackle polishes? Today I dug out an old polish, one of my first-ever China Glazes and one that crackles, no less. Sometimes I forget how long I’ve been doing this nail polish thing, and this polish comes as a stark reminder. This is China Glaze’s Gleam Me Up with Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s Lighthouse on the Lake.

Lighthouse on the Lake, this beautiful deep blue creme, has been a big player in my collection recently. I’ve used it as undies for glitter swatches and nail art, and it always looks great with whatever I pair it with. That’s really true for every BEGL creme, but this is the one I’ve used most often.

I can never get good macros on cloudy days.

Gleam Me Up is blue glitter crackle madness. I don’t even hate this polish. The glitter is dense enough that the crackle effect is crisp, but lets enough of the base color through so that everything is uniform. Honestly, it’s a fun combo. I kind of want to get some other crackles out to see what I’ve been missing.

Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquers are available from their online shop; BEGL is currently on hiatus while the maker is on maternity leave (!!!). China Glaze polishes are sold in stores.

I bought these polishes myself.