Manicure Tuesday: Jade Rainbow

Welcome back! I’ve got a green look to show you this week for Manicure Tuesday. The striping tape wasn’t on my side, but I’m happy with the look I got. I used Philly Loves Lacquer’s Fortunate Rainbow and Elevation Polish‘s Yeti’s Healing Vibes.

I always feel a little sad talking about a brand that’s closed down. When I got into indie polish, PhLL was one of the brands I saw everywhere, and it took me ages to try them; I only have box-exclusive polishes from them, and never bought any of their core releases. That said, it was a huge shock to me when they closed up. I love every PhLL polish I have, and I regret that I didn’t go for more of them.

This Elevation Polish was a limited edition made to benefit the American Himalayan Foundation after the devastating earthquakes in Nepal in 2015. It’s a beautiful creamy jade with fine little rainbow flakies in it. It’s gorgeous! I know Elevation is a controversial brand now, but this is one polish from them I’m really glad I bought.

Both of these polishes are limited editions that have since sold out. Philly Loves Lacquer no longer makes polish. Elevation Polishes 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: Orange and Ginger

Happy Monday, reader! Today’s look is simple but colorful. I used Sally Hansen’s Sun Kissed and Digital Nails‘s Ultimate Ginger. Let’s get started!

Sun Kissed is a polish I’ve had for a long time; you can’t tell in this photo, but the fill line is somewhere around the French words on the bottle. It may be one of my oldest. I kept it simple here, just because I wasn’t sure how the consistency of the polish would be after so many years. It was actually still pretty easy to work with, but it was thickening and stretching like mozzarella around the neck of the bottle. This is the first time in a while I’ve had the hope that I can finish a bottle of polish.

I used Ultimate Ginger here for the orange glitters, as well as the complementary colors. I knew the orange and blue together would make a stunning combination, but I didn’t realize how colorful Ultimate Ginger really is. It’s not just orange and blue glitters in there; it’s yellow, white, and green, too. I know this is a polish based on a painting of flowers (or rather, a Doctor Who episode centered around it? Confession: I’ve never seen Doctor Who) so it should come as no surprise, but still. There’s much more to this polish than I expected.

Sally Hansen polishes are sold in stores. The original formula of Ultimate Ginger was discontinued, with a changed-up version called Penultimate Ginger taking its place. Either way, Digital Nails is unfortunately still on hiatus.

I bought these polishes myself.

Throwback Swatch: Dainty Digits Polish’s Stream of Enchantment

Welcome back, reader! I still have swatch posts to catch up on, so I’m getting through them. This is Dainty Digits’s Stream of Enchantment; I’m wearing three coats with one coat of Seche Vite.

I love handwritten labels.

Stream of Enchantment is a sky blue polish with shifting flake glitters. Application was easy; the product consistency was just right. As you can see, it’s on the sheer side, so there’s a lot of visible nail lines (when my nails are this long, I don’t mind it), but it works well with layering the glitters. The polish dries to a smooth finish; I used top coat for extra shine and protection.

This is my first Dainty Digits Polish! I got to meet maker NeNe at The Indie Shop Atlanta and bought her event exclusives. I love them! She did two different takes on the same polish, a day version and a night version, just changing the base color. This is the daytime version, and it’s so cheerful. I love it. I was hoping the glitters would be bigger, but there’s a lot of them, and the sheerness of the polish helps you see every single scrap of it. This would definitely be a great base for nail art.

Stream of Enchantment was an event exclusive. Dainty Digits is now Baby Girl Lacquer; other polishes can be purchased from their online store.

I bought this polish myself.
I have an extra bottle I’m saving for a giveaway!

Guest Post: Boom Shaka Lacquer

Editor’s Note: Big thanks to Karel and Boom Shaka Lacquer for writing this post! Please do stop by Boom Shaka Lacquer and show some love.

Nothing to Disclose

Hello there!  I’m popping by today with a guest post since Stacie is currently facing the “Great Camera Lens Disaster of 2017.”  I’m Karel and I am the head writer and nail polish addict at Boom Shaka Lacquer.  I’m so happy to be here today and I’m going to share with you one of my favorite brands of all time!

Today I’m going to review a polish from Digital Nails!  Now, Digital Nails was actually my first Indie Polish brand that I ever bought.  Five years later and I’m still a loyal customer.  Today we’re going to look at Ultimate Ginger:

Digital Nails – Ultimate Ginger

Firstly, let me say, this was an original version of this polish.  One glitter in this polish became unavailable so Raph of Digital Nails substituted another glitter and renamed the polish so while this particular version is not available a newer version called Penultimate Ginger (which to my eye is virtually indistinguishable between it and the original) is still available.

Digital Nails – Ultimate Ginger

Ultimate (and Penultimate) Ginger is a crelly-based glitter polish.  It is almost a jelly but it has a very slight bit of creme in the base so I would call it a crelly.  The crelly base is a sheer but buildable turquoise and it is jam-packed with glittery goodness.  There are white and yellow satin glitters, orange and emerald green metallic glitter, and itsy bitsy teensie aqua holographic glitters.  It is a veritable cornucopia of glitter.

Plus, this polish is based on one of my favorite Doctor Who episodes of all time, Vincent and the Doctor.  So this polish gets me right in the feels every time I see it.  I love when two of my passions come together, in this case Doctor Who and Nail Polish!

Digital Nails – Ultimate Ginger

Application on this is lovely.  It is a sheer polish so it does take three coats but they were easy peasy coats.  I did not need to fish for glitter or worry that I wasn’t going to get a nice combination on the nail.  It was not topcoat hungry so I was able to achieve a nice smooth finish with just a layer of my normal quick-dry topcoat.

Digital Nails – Ultimate Ginger (macro)

I hope that you enjoyed this post and I sincerely hope that Stacie will be back with you soon!  If you’d like to check out more of my posts you’re more than welcome to visit me at my blog and social media.  You can also get Penultimate Ginger and other polishes from Digital Nails’ shop!  I’ll include all the stalker links you could ever want below!

Boom Shaka Lacquer:

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Digital Nails:

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Swatch Saturday: Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer Prototype JS 1.2

Hello, reader! Now that the Indie Shop stuff is out of the way, we’re back to our regularly-scheduled weekend swatches. Today’s swatch is not an Indie Shop polish, but you will be seeing those in coming weeks. No, this is a Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer prototype! This is JS 1.2, and I’m wearing it at three coats with one coat of Seche Vive top coat.

Prototype JS 1.2 is a white crelly with a colorful mix of glitters. Application was easy; the product consistency was just right, and the glitters brushed on evenly. It doesn’t look like it in photos, however. The white base is pretty opaque and obscures a lot of the glitters, so that classic translucent crelly look isn’t quite there. The polish dried with a glossy finish and was smooth to the touch. I used top coat for extra smoothness and shine.

I don’t think I will ever get tired of crellies like this. I know I say this every time I wear one, but seriously, I still remember when these were the new hotness and every maker had tons of them. Makers are doing these gorgeous shifters and shimmers now, but the glitter crelly will always be my fave.

I probably didn’t need to take sunlight photos of this polish, it basically looks the same in both situations. The following photos were taken outdoors.

Prototype JS 1.2 was a one-off and I’ve got the only bottle. Other Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquers are sold in their online shop, though at publication time, they are taking a break.

I bought this polish myself.

A Look Back at 2016

Hello reader! Now that 2016 is behind us, I wanted to look back on some of my blog highlights and share my favorite nail art looks, and maybe share some of my 2017 blogging goals with you. I guess I could have waited to do this on my blog-versary in March, but it feels more appropriate to do it now.

January: Elevated Gradient

February: Neon Satisfaction

You’ll notice these photos are tiny. Why? Because in March, The Great wacie.com Server Crash of 2016 happened! My webhost had a hardware failure, and for whatever reason, several months of posts were lost and had to be pieced back together with images and text cached by Google. It was an extremely frustrating and embarrassing time for me.

March: Spring Hibiscus

I miss these long nails.

This is probably my favorite look of the year.

Third Anniversary Do-Over

I mentioned earlier that my blog’s anniversary is in March. For last year’s anniversary, I recreated the first-ever mani I posted on my blog. I don’t know yet what I’ll do for my fourth year, but it’ll probably be awesome.

April: Dusty Watermarble

May: Neon Splatter

I went to Hawaii in May. As a result, this is my least active month on the blog for the year.

June: Orange Jello Sandwich

My first Empties Roundup post was also in June.

July: Beyond

August: Ombre Hearts

September: Popples

October: Stripey Blue Frosting

This was a look I did to celebrate my birthday.

November: Ruby Opal

December: White Snow Blue Lava

So there’s my year! This was probably the busiest year for the blog, since I broadened my sujects quite a lot. I did tons of swatches and nail art, but I also ventured into product reviews and makeup talk. I don’t think this will ever become a full lifestyle or beauty blog, but I’m definitely having fun with it in this format. I’m kind of excited to see what it’ll evolve into in 2017. Here are a few beauty goals I have in mind, though.

1. Write more
I wrote 175 posts in 2016, averaging about 14 per month. It doesn’t sound like much to me, like I did way more work than that, especially when it started to feel stressful. That said, I’d like to do at least one more post every week.

1b. Write on my other blog more
I have a second blog that I want to start posting to more. It’s been so long since I’ve bothered with it that I don’t even remember the login credentials. I still want a place to talk about myself and my life, a place to seem like I have a life away from my nails.

2. Build a real skincare routine
I still feel insecure about my skin. I’m frustrated that I’m 31 and I still get acne. I want to take every preventative measure I can against wrinkles and anti-aging. I also want to try a 10-step Asian beauty routine. If you’re over 30 with oily skin and hormonal acne, I want your recommendations.

3. Stop competing
I know one of the big rules of blogging is not to compare your success with others’, but I feel so competitive about it. At the risk of sounding whiny, I always look at other bloggers who’ve been working on their blogs for about as long as I have, and watching their blogs grow faster than mine is kind of frustrating. I don’t want to feel like that anymore.

4. Do more real nail art
I love glitter toppers and I think I use at least one every week, but sometimes it feels lazy. I want to go back to the basics: watermarbling, gradients, dotting. I love my glitters, but it’s starting to feel like a cop-out.

I think that’s it! Anyway, I think 2017 is going to be an exciting year, and I’m looking forward to the good times, the challenges, and the time we spend together. Thanks for reading!

Swatch Saturday on Sunday: Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer’s The Years Have Been Short

Hi! So this weekend we’re doing both weekend swatches in one day, because I was irresponsible yesterday and spent all day shopping instead of blogging like I should have been. Sorry! I’ll post what should have been yesterday’s post now, and today’s post will follow. Let’s get started! My Saturday Swatch is Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s The Years Have Been Short; I’m wearing three coats with one coat of Seche Vite.

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The Years Have Been Short is a thin white crelly with a mix of fine white and blue glitters. Application was easy; the glitters spread well over the nail while the crelly adds a creamy, glossy finish. The crelly is very thin and the whites of my nails are still visible, even through three coats. Though it’s fine glitter, the polish dries with a coarse texture and top coat is necessary for a smooth finish.

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I’m almost finished with the Spark in the Dark collection! Though I have my favorites from this collection, I think The Years Have Been Short is the most unique of them. It’s like a grown-up cousin of the vintage BEGL First Frost; they use the same crelly base and the same glitter colors, but the glitter is finer and the look is a little more elegant and wintry. I felt super fancy wearing this!

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In the sunlight, you can see how thin the crelly is, which I really love. These photos were taken in direct sunlight.

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The Years Have Been Short has been discontinued by Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer; other BEGL polishes are available in their online shop.

I bought this polish myself.

Birthday Mani Digest 2016

Welcome back, reader! As you know, I took a bit of time off these past couple weeks to celebrate my birthday. It was only supposed to be one, but the arrival of Hurricane Matthew led to everything being postponed. That madness is now over, and now I’d like to show you what my nails were up to during the downtime. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve seen most of these lovelies already. I promise I will not be mentioning my birthday again until next October.

Birthday Mani #1: Pink Frosting With Sprinkles
Essie’s Good Morning Hope with Lynnderella‘s Icing Glass Garland

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The first birthday mani was a fun warm-up with an untried Lynnderella topper. I had a lot of fun wearing this; Icing Glass Garland was a lot more interesting in real life, however. There is a lot of iridescence and color-changiness. It doesn’t look like much over Good Morning Hope, but it still made for a fun and dainty look.

Birthday Mani #2: Cupcakes
Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s Eleanor, China Glaze’s White on White, LA Girl’s Black, Orly’s Water Lily, P2’s French Kiss, Ciate’s Pillow Fight

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I always do cupcakes to celebrate my birthday, and this year’s mani was actually done in the middle of the hurricane. Even though the hurricane was an unwelcome birthday event (thanks, universe), we still had a good time. A lot of our friends live in evacuation zones and came to stay with us when the call came to evacuate, so we still had a party and ate food and played board games. It was not the worst experience.

Birthday Mani #3: Hello Dalek
Digital Nails‘s Hello Dalek

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This was last week’s Manicure Monday post, but I’m including it for continuity. Monday was my actual birthday, and it was a ton of fun to wear a party on my nails as well. When your birthday is on the worst day of the week, you have to party any way you can.

Birthday Mani #4: Glitter Frosting
Digital Nails’s Pandorica, Model City Polish‘s Sheena is a Punk Rocker, Wacie Nail Company’s Your Daring Escape, Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer’s Walk Through the Tulips
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This look includes the polish I made myself for my birthday! Your Daring Escape is a silvery-white holo with holographic glitter and pearl pink and metallic silver flakies. I wanted a holo-meets-glitter-gradient look, but as the sun never came out that day, a lot of the beauty got lost.

Birthday Mani #5: Stripey Blue Frosting
Literary Lacquers‘s Bluestocking Romance, Hard Candy’s Sky, China Glaze’s Mosaic Madness

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This was the mani I got the most compliments on for sure. I’d always wanted to do this moving stripes design, and this was the day I felt like dealing with the striping tape. It came out so much better than I expected it would, though I’m a little disappointed it smeared a little with the top coat. I’d totally do it again.

I also want to take this time to share some birthday manis of years past. I realized at some point that I’ve been doing the annual cupcake mani for five years now; the annual cupcake mani predates wacie.com, even. I love doing little retrospectives like this; if I’ve learned anything from this, it’s that my cupcake painting skills have gotten only marginally better.

2012
Colors Unknown, but probably all Sinful Colors

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Look at this. I almost don’t even want to share this, but we all have to start somewhere, right? I do remember waiting practically all day for the dots to dry, and they still smudged when I put the top down. Not only was this before wacie.com came to be, but I think it was also before the days of quick-dry top coat. Those dark, dark days.

2013
Sally Hansen’s Mint Sprint, OPI’s Eurso Euro, P2’s French Kiss, Sally Hansen’s Hard to Get, Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer’s Floppy. Hoppy. BUNNIES!

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These look more like mashed potatoes than cupcakes. This was my first birthday post on the blog. Going back and reading the post, about it, I completely forgot all that stuff happened! I do remember doing this mani in Boyfriend’s tiny Atlanta living space, trying not to bother him and his roommate with nail polish smell. I got acetone on his desk and ruined the varnish. I still feel bad about that.

2014
Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer’s Dawn Breaks and If You’re a Seascape, Indigo Bananas‘s Moonlight (Clair de Lune), P2’s French Kiss, American Apparel’s Neon Pink, Essie’s Fiji, Ciate’s Candy Floss

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That P2 polish finds its way into every birthday mani, doesn’t it? I loved this look a lot. I totally wore it to a fancy restaurant. Here’s the post!

2015
Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer’s Ocean Warmed by the Sun, Digital Nails’s Purple Reign, Nails Inc.’s Pudding Lane, Hot Topic’s Light Blue, Estee Lauder’s Black Plum

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This is last year’s mani, and the mani that celebrates the big 3-0. This was also one of the last photos I took on my phone before Drunk Me left it on top of the car and broke the camera forever. Good times!

Again, a huge thank you to everyone who wished me a happy birthday; I cherish all of you! Thank you so much for tolerating all of the birthday posts.

Pretty sure I bought all these polishes myself.

Manicure Monday: Dreams of Mermaids

Hello reader! I’m so excited for today’s post. I’m wearing a thermal polish! Dreams of Mermaids was a very early indie polish purchase, and today’s the day I’m giving it some love. I’m wearing three coats with one coat of Seche Vite top coat.

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Dreams of Mermaids is a green-to-teal thermal polish with gold, blue, and green glitters, as well as a green shimmer throughout. Unfortunately, because it’s a very hot day in sunny Florida, I wasn’t able to capture the thermal effect well. In July, it doesn’t matter how long my nails are, the polish is always in the hot stage. Dunking my nails in ice water effects the change, but as soon as I pull it out, it goes right back to hot. This is why my cold stage and transition photos are so watery; I had to work fast. I do apologize.

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I’m actually surprised the thermal effect still happens at all; this is a three year old polish, after all. I bought it at the same time I bought Pretty Chameleon, another beautiful Pretty & Polished thermal. Not only does it still change, it still has a pretty dramatic change. Something I notice about old thermals is that even though the effect still happens, it doesn’t happen as quicky or as powerfully as it used to. This one still works like it’s brand new.

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In the sunlight, you can see exactly why this polish is called Dreams of Mermaids. The colors are definitely evocative of the ocean, and the shimmer really lights up out here! These photos were taken in direct sunlight.

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It looks like Dreams of Mermaids has been discontinued by Pretty & Polished; other P&P polishes — including thermals! — are for sale in their etsy shop and on their website.

I bought this polish myself.