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: 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.

Manicure Monday: Red and Gold, Again

Happy Monday! For this week’s look, I have yet another red and gold look. I couldn’t help it, the combination was just so perfect. This is LA Colors’s Animated with Formula X for Sephora’s Voltage.

Animated might be one of my favorite polishes. Every time I wear a red polish on the blog, I always talk about how I love red polish, and this one’s no exception. I bought it to be yet another red creme in my collection, but the tiny shimmer in it makes me smile whenever I see it. This is one of the best dollars I ever spent.

Voltage is a souvenir polish; I bought it from the Sephora in Times Square. It’s a gold glitter polish in a thin red jelly base, which made it the perfect companion to Animated. I used two coats of Voltage here, not only for the extra glitter, but to made sure it got some of that jelly effect. I’m not sure it worked, but I like the look.

LA Colors is sold in stores. Formula X can be found on their website.

I bought these polishes myself.

Manicure Monday: Golden Surprise

Welcome back, reader! It’s Monday, and I have some nail art for you. At least, if you can see it. I’ve had a string of these tone-on-tone manis that were all fails; the most recent before today was this silver-on-silver look I wore over the weekend, a look that worked in my head but looked completely different on my nails. This is Enchanted Polish‘s Good Life with Literary Lacquers‘s I Heard the Bells.

Good Life is an excellent polish. It’s such a strong gold polish, it’s got a strong holo, and it has this gold-to-green shift that completely changes the tone of the polish. It’s this cool-toned shift that makes the nail art visible. I did a few criss-crosses with striping tape, hoping the difference between glitter and holo would create some distinctive lines. There’s not enough contrast without the shift.

The art got a little messed up on the ring finger. I’m a little grateful you can’t see it.

In the shade.

I Heard the Bells is a pretty wonderful polish too. It’s full of fine glitters, but doesn’t dry with a texture, and it’s actually pretty easy to take off. I always get this polish out around the holidays — it is a holiday exclusive, after all — and incorporate it into a Christmas mani, but since I had it sitting out, I couldn’t resist using it. It’s a shame you can’t really see it here.

Enchanted Polishes are sold in their online shop. Literary Lacquers are sold on etsy.

I bought these polishes myself.

Swatch: Disney’s Villain Varnish in Queen of Hearts

Welcome back! This year I want to get back to posting on a schedule like I used to, but before I can do that, I have so many unposted swatches I have to get up first. Today’s post is about a polish I love and received as a Christmas gift several years ago. This is Disney’s Villain Varnish in Queen of Hearts; I’m wearing three coats with one coat of Seche Vite.

Queen of Hearts is a burnished shimmery gold polish with some holo flakies. Application was good; the polish has a smooth and workable consistency, and dries with a glossy finish. Because of the frosty shimmer, it leaves some brush-strokes if one doesn’t apply carefully; they aren’t too bad, but they do happen. The polish dries quickly to a smooth finish.

As large as my polish collection is, I don’t have a polish like this one. I love how it reminds me of something in a thrift store, something tarnished but has endured. I’m a little disappointed that the one they called Queen of Hearts wasn’t red — that one’s Cruella de Vil — but I like it very much.

Disney no longer sells this set, but they do have nail wraps and other beauty items in stores and online.

This polish was a Christmas gift.

Manicure Monday: Olive the Glitter

Welcome back! I’ve got another super-shifty microglitter to show you today. This is Digital Nails‘s Galactica over Essie’s Sew Psyched.

Last week, I showed you Leviathan, that crazy shifty glitter that went from purple to blue to orange. Galactica is a sister polish to Leviathan; they are both named after fictional spaceships and feature wildly shifting glitter. These polishes are both so much fun to wear because they look so different in every lighting situation.

Sew Psyched is a great base for this glitter because it just blends into it most of the time. Of course, there are instances where it looks kind of odd, like when the light is shining right on the glitter and it’s super gold and the base is just kind of there. For the most part, though, the glitters and the base are the same, and all you see is the shine from the glitter.

Sew Psyched and Essie are sold in stores. Galactica and other Digital Nails polishes are sold in their etsy shop, which is currently closed.

I bought these polishes myself.

Swatch Sunday: Crystal Knockout’s Pegasus Landing

Welcome back to Swatch Sunday! Today’s polish is a new-to-me brand called Crystal Knockout (formerly DazzleGlaze). I loved meeting them at The Indie Shop in Atlanta; they’re from Florida, and I always like meeting the neighbors. They were selling a big range of products, even making their own jewelry. I regret that I didn’t buy any of the jewelry. Anyway, so here’s their VIP bag contribution. This is Pegasus Landing on its own (three coats) and over both China Glaze’s White on White and Sally Hansen’s Black Out (two coats) with one coat of Seche Vite.

Pegasus Landing is a shimmery white gold with gold glitters and rose gold flakies. This was very easy to apply; the product consistency good, even with all of the glitter in it. The bigger glitters was a little shy, but with repeated coats, I still got a good amount on my nail. I did a terrible job at showing the rose gold aspect of the polish; it was probably my favorite thing about it. The polish dried well but I did wish I’d used a second layer of top coat.

I didn’t expect this polish to work so well on its own, but I definitely prefer it alone than over white or black. I love how well the gold stands out over the black, but it’s definitely best without undies. I don’t really have any other polishes like this one, so it’s got a cool uniqueness factor. Lots of polishes like this with really creamy shimmery bases and chunky glitters don’t work, but this one does.

Pegasus Landing was an event exclusive. Other Crystal Knockout products are sold on their online shop.

This polish came in an event VIP bag.

Manicure Monday: Red and Gold Splatter

Happy Monday! I want to preface this by saying this is probably going to be the last laid-back Manicure Monday for a while. After today, I dive into writing a novel and possibly starting a new job — fingers crossed! In any case, things are going to be busy and I’m nervous and excited. These nails look like I feel. For this look, I used Deborah Lippmann’s Single Ladies and Essie’s Good as Gold.

I wasn’t totally sure what I was going to do with this look when I started it. Single Ladies is a really squishy polish; it look three coats to get rid of all the streaks. I thought about taking advantage of this and doing a pond mani or something similar, but I didn’t want to cover the pretty metallic gold effect of Good As Gold. The classic gold and red was very necessary here.

Index finger, Ring finger

I’m pretty happy with how this turned out. Splatter manis are such a mess, and I kind of wished I had some liquid latex or something. I’ve really got to invest in some, it would make life so much easier.

Single Ladies and other Deborah Lippmann polishes are sold in stores; I got mine from Sephora. Essie is available pretty much everywhere.

I bought these polishes myself.

Manicure Monday: Glitter Shapes on Nude

Welcome back! I had swatches to show you this weekend, and I had this fantasy that I could write and promote two blog posts while also cleaning my house for my birthday party, attending my birthday party, and then cleaning up after my birthday party. I will be getting you the swatches this weekend, at least. If you missed my birthday manicure on Instagram, you should check it out. I’m pretty happy with how it turned out, even if it’s a little more Christmas than I wanted it to be. Anyway, Monday’s here again, and here’s a new mani! This is Julep’s Alexandra, mattified, with a shiny dollop of Lynnderella‘s Golden Lining.

I don’t often like the look of matte nails. I like them on other people, of course, but I always feel like I’m sucking the life out of the polish when I mattify it. Alexandra, though, looks amazing mattified. The pale almond is great on its own, but it’s even more stylish with the matte finish.

Trying to capture the matte/shiny here, just got glare

I didn’t like Golden Lining mattified, so I used an extra bit of top coat over the — I don’t know what to call this shape. Ruffles? Dollops? Scoops? — to make the glitter sparkle. It’s still not as shiny as I hoped it would be, like the contrast between the matte creme and the shiny glitter isn’t as dramatic as I imagined it would be, but I still rather like it. Golden Lining is a beautiful polish and it pairs wonderfully with Alexandra. I’m probably going to use it again this weekend.

I can’t find Alexandra on the Julep site, so it might be discontinued. Golden Lining may also be discontinued, I don’t see it on the Lynnderella site. I also used Essie’s mattifying top coat and Seche Vite.

I bought all of these products myself.

Nailspiration: Alterre NY’s Resort/Winter 2017 Collection

Hello, reader! Today’s post is all about shoes and manicures based on shoes. I got an early look at Alterre‘s 2017 shoe collection, and after seeing how easily the designs and colors lend themselves to negative space manicures, I had to give it a shot.

This post is a sponsored post by Alterre NY and Brandbacker. The opinions stated in this post are my own.

If you’re unfamiliar with Alterre, imagine this: modular sandals. You start with a sandal base, with straps that snap to the bottom sole. Different straps (the look) can be added to the sandal base (the lift) to customize the shoe. All looks work with all lifts and can be used to create a huge combination of different shoes. Imagine the possibilities!

This year’s collection, which doesn’t launch until September, is based on styles from the 1970s. The catalog contains a lot of earth tones and platform shoes, which I’m a huge fan of.

As I mentioned, I saw a manicure for every shoe in the catalog. The modular approach to negative space manicures works as well as it does for shoes.

P2’s French Kiss and Essie’s Good As Gold

These looks are completely outside what I usually do for myself. I did a lot of taping and a lot of freehand painting, which I’ve never been completely comfortable with. Some of these looks, I regret to say, aren’t up to my usual standards.

Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s Lighthouse on the Lake and Siren’s Quarter-Life Crisis

They’re kind of editorial, and maybe that’s the look I wanted all along. Not all of these looks, nail and shoe alike, are suited for everyday life, but they could be with just a few adjustments.

This was directly from the PDF catalog, I didn’t get a hi-res photo of this one.

Sally Hansen’s Black Out, China Glaze’s White on White, dried flowers from Ciaté

e.l.f’s Nude, Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer’s I Could See Them Too

P2’s Artful, Essie’s Nothing Else Metals, OPI’s Dutch Tulips

So, what do you think, reader? I hope you like the shoes and some of the manis. I’ve been thinking of making Nailspiration a regular wacie.com feature, because I see so many things around the house and out into the world that would make fantastic nail art that I never get the chance to try.

 

This post is a sponsored post by Alterre NY and Brandbacker. The opinions stated in this post are my own.
All nail products featured in this post were purchased myself.