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.

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.

Swatch Sunday: The New Black’s Gold Leaf Foil

Welcome back for Swatch Sunday! Today’s swatch is of a mystery polish from The New Black I’ve just been calling Gold Leaf Foil. The New Black doesn’t label any of their shade names, which is kind of frustrating. I’m wearing Gold Leaf Foil over Sally Hansen’s Black Out (black), Octopus Party’s Universal Loner (red), and Indigo Bananas‘s Klein Trink Wasser (blue) with one coat of Gelous.

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Gold Leaf Foil is a clear-based glitter topper with metallic gold shredded glitter. Application was easy enough; the product consistency delivered the glitter well enough and wasn’t too difficult to work with. The glitter itself was the troblesome part. The glitter pieces are unevenly shaped; some pieces are very large and others are barely there. The very coarse pieces don’t always lie flat, which sometimes leads to them getting snagged and/or pulled off. It does dry quickly and with a good shine; I used top coat for extra smoothness.

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Coarse shredded glitter is probably my least favorite glitter shape. I mean, I love how they look, their shine and madness is unmatched. I love how this looks over the cremes. I just don’t like how these large glitters stick up. If you look at the sunlight photos in the next set, you’ll actually see that my pinky nail has more glitter on it than the studio set. That’s because, between the time I took the photos outdoors and indoors, the glitter actually got pulled off somehow. In the studio photos, you can just see where it used to be.

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Here are the sunlight photos. I took these a bit late in the afternoon so it’s not the harsh sunlight I usually shoot in. Like I said, this is a pretty cool looking glitter, even if working with it is kind of annoying.

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So I can’t find a source on where to get The New Black these days. I got this set — this polish came with a black creme and a set of gold studs — from Ulta when it was in the clearance section. Sephora’s website has a two bottle set in their clearance section as of this writing. Other than that, they seem to have been discontinued.

I bought these polish myself.

HPB Presents: Silly Halloween Cats

It’s that time again: It’s the Hobby Polish Bloggers linkup for the month of October! Every month, the HPB Facebook group gets together to do a themed mani. Of course, October’s theme is Halloween! I’d been seeing the cat tips around, so I decided to try it out myself. I used Zoya’s Chantal, the no-name glow in the dark polish from Rite-Aid, Sally Hansen’s Black Out, and Enchanted Polish‘s Ectoplasm.

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I don’t really like doing holiday nails, so I wasn’t that excited about the theme. I went with the black cat tips because it’s more cutesy than Halloweeny, and also resembles one of my own cats. It fits the theme while also dodging it, and I’m happy about that.

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I started with three coats of Chantal; of course, I wanted fewer but could never get it even until the third. I also used two of the glow in the dark, since the glitter is so sparse. I’m pretty happy with the art job I did with the cats; I did the head shape with the polish brush itself, did the ears and pupils with a thin art brush, and used the dotting tool to apply the iris. That part is a little wonky, but I’m happy everything else looks the way it should.

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Remember I said I used glow in the dark polish? This part didn’t turn out quite the way I wanted, though it looks really cool in the photo. In real life it just looked weird. This photo was taken in complete darkness.

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I got some sun shots, too! There’s not much to see here but the glitter. There’s not much, but this is a gentle reminder that it’s there. These photos were taken in direct sunlight.

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And there you have it! I mentioned earlier that this mani looks like one of my cats, so I’ll leave you with a photo of that dear kitty. This is Quaker. She actually crossed the rainbow bridge last August at the ripe old age of 20. Sorry to bring this post down with a sad pet story, but this mani made me miss her.

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Chantal and other Zoya polishes are sold at Ulta. Check Rite-Aids and other drugstores for the fun pumpkin GITD polish. Enchanted Polishes are sold in their online shop. Sally Hansen is sold in stores nationwide.

I bought these polishes myself.
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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.

HPB Presents: Project Orion

Welcome to the Hobby Polish Bloggers link-up for the month of July! Each month, this Facebook group chooses a mani theme; it’s up to the participant to decide how simple or elaborate their mani will be. Anything goes as long as it adheres to the theme! July’s theme is space, and I decided to take my mani in a different direction; I attempted to recreate NASA’s Project Orion insignia in mani form. For this look, I used Monster Polish‘s I was Hoping for Minimalism, but I Think I Came Out With Magician as the base, and the logo was done with Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s Terrific Twos (the planet), Sally Hansen’s Magenta Moves (the whoosh), and China Glaze’s White on White (the stars). All nails were finished with Seche Vite top coat and Essie’s Matte About You matte coat.

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It’s probably no secret that I’m a big spaceflight nerd. I follow rocket launches, planetary science updates, and ISS experiments almost as closely as I follow indie polish releases. When Orion was launched for its first experimental flight test in December 2014, you better believe I was watching it online. It was delayed a few times due to weather violations, and once because there was a boat in the launch zone. I didn’t trust myself to not sleep through it, so I just stayed up for three days. It was really the most exciting thing I’d been since Curiosity landed on Mars.

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My interpretation of the logo is a little sloppy, but I think it’s recognizable at the very least. I think the logo is actually pretty clever; the Orion constellation is hidden inside it. My nail wasn’t quite big enough for the whole design, so it’s a little cramped. The Monster Polish I used as the base is the perfect spaceflight blue. I love that the planet depicted is now a mound of glitter. I’m happy, overall, with how it turned out.

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Part of the reason I did this mani was to raise awareness of what’s going in modern spaceflight. It’s disappointing to me that more people either don’t know about or aren’t interested in the gains we’ve made in the past few years. There’s so much happening now: science is done on the ISS every day, SpaceX is continually innovating, and missions to Mars — likely on the Orion spacecraft — will be inevitable. This is like near-Disneyland levels of excitement to me.

This is an Orion model at Kennedy Space Center. It was a little more convincing in person.

This is an Orion model at Kennedy Space Center. It was a little more convincing in person.

I was Hoping for Minimalism, but I Think I Came Out With Magician and other Monster Polishes are available in their online shop. Terrific Twos was a BEGL limited edition and has since sold out; other Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquers are for sale in their online shop. Sally Hansen and China Glaze are available in stores nationwide.

I bought these polishes myself.
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Manicure Monday: Kinetic Copper

Happy Monday, reader! Remember magnetic polish! I’m bringing it back! Today’s look was done with Sally Hansen’s Kinetic Copper; this is three coats of Kinetic Copper with one coat of Seche Vite.

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So we all remember 2011, right? Maybe it was 2012. That time had a lot of really fun and, looking back on them, really questionable nail trends. Magnetics, feather toppers, crackle toppers… It’s so fun to look back on looks like these with what we know now. I wasn’t huge into nail art at that time, and this was way before I discovered indies, so anything new was really exciting. Even with as popular as magnetic polishes were, I’ve still only worn like three of them ever, and that’s why the novelty hasn’t completely worn off for me. I kind of wonder if we’re going to look back on gel-effect polishes and Liquid Sand with the same kind of  dismissal.

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Kinetic Copper has the benefit of being a really pretty polish with or without the magnetic effect. As you can see, I only used the magnet on my accent nails; let’s not go too far into the past, shall we? This rich bronze has a lot of copper shimmers floating around in it, so even if you just wear it as a shimmer polish, it’s a really nice look. The magnet deepens the polish to a rich brown, and the wave pattern gives it a cool cats-eye cabochon effect. It’s still cool, even if it is dated.

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You can see the magnetic effect best in the sunlight photos. I never get a good even pattern because my nails curve so much; it’s strong in the center and only in the center. It looks fantastic in the sunlight, though, the copper shimmers really come to life out here.

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Kinetic Copper and the Magnetic line are discontinued by Sally Hansen; other Sally Hansen polishes are available in stores nationwide.

Swatch Sunday: Sally Hansen’s Magenta Moves

Welcome back, reader! It’s Sunday, so it’s time for swatches! Today’s swatch is an oldie but a goodie, Sally Hansen’s Magenta Moves! I still remember the day I plucked this polish out of a Target sale bin. For this swatch, I’m wearing three coats with one coat of Seche Vite top coat.

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Magenta Moves is a bright pink creme polish. Application was a challenge due to the wide Insta-Dri brush. I love the product formula; the pigmentation is excellent, delivering an opaque first coat, but the brush was about as wide as my whole nail and made application somewhat of a mess. The polish itself, though, is very nice. It’s well-pigmented and opaque, and dries evenly and smoothly with a glossy finish. I used top coat for even more shine.

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Let’s talk about the stained cuticle. I know you’re looking at it, I can’t stop looking at it, I’m kind of embarrassed about the whole thing. This is the unfortunate downside to the Insta-Dri formula. Because you get such fantastic one-coat coverage and strong color, you’ll also get some staining if you’re not careful. I figured this would happen, so I took all the precautions I could — I slathered my cuticules in oil before I started, and I tried my damnedest to keep the color off my skin to begin with, but because the brush was so wide and my nails are so little that it just happened anyway. And let me tell you, that pink stain was not easy to remove. I used a boatload of acetone and washed dishes, and the only thing that took it off was cuticle remover. It’s really my own fault for having neglected cuticles, but even so, let this be a warning.

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Magenta Moves has been discontinued by Sally Hansen; other Insta-Dri polishes and Sally Hansen products are available in stores nationwide.

I bought this polish myself.

Manicure Monday: Orange Crush

Happy Monday! Orange is the word of the day here. This mani is all about big color and flakies. For this look, I used Sally Hansen’s Heat Flash, Digital Nails‘s Crush Leaves Not Dreams, and Seche Vite top coat.

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Heat Flash is a fantastic polish, though mine is aged and had to be thinned quite a lot prior to today’s use. Despite that, the opacity and color intensity are still as great as ever. This is a bottle I’ve been enjoying for many years now; it’s one of the best oranges I have in my collection. My only gripe is with the double-wide brush; I’ve never been able to use it without making a mess of my fingers.

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I didn’t want to cover such a bold and fun color, only accentuate it, so I wanted to go with a flakie topper. It took a long time to find the right one, and I’m not sure if Crush Leaves Not Dreams was the right choice, but I kind of like how it came out anyway. Crush Leaves Not Dreams is a slightly-shimmered clear-based topper with these magical rose-to-gold-to-green flakies. I don’t know how else to describe them — other than voodoo — because they’re unlike any flakie I’ve ever encountered. They’re chunky and more substantial than the iridescent flakies we love, but not to the same degree UCC flakies are. These are just so unique and magnificent. The shift occurs easily and looks great over this orange base. I added studs for extra accents, just because I can’t stand it when all the nails look exactly the same.

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Here are some sunlight photos! Crush Leaves Not Dreams looks amazing outdoors. Usually my camera freaks out over orange polishes in the sun, but I think these turned out well. The blue/purple shimmer gets overwhelmed, but the flakies look great.

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Sally Hansen seem to have discontinued Heat Flash and the Insta-Dri line; other Sally Hansen products are sold in stores nationwide. Crush Leaves Not Dreams was a small-batch polish and is sold out; other Digital Nails polishes are available in their etsy shop.

I bought these polishes myself.