Manicure Monday: Pink Holo Stripes With Sprinkles

Happy Monday! I dug deep for today’s mani. I didn’t feel satisfied just putting glitter over polish, so I got the holos out and the striping tape. I should do this kind of thing more often. For this look, I used Elevation Polish‘s Hitsujiyama Park (light pink), Literary Lacquers‘s Laughs in Flowers (pink stripes), Model City Polish‘s Pour Me Another (dark pink), and OPI’s Pink Yet Lavender (glitter). All photos were taken outdoors in direct sunlight.



With this mani, I just wanted something pink and flashy. I chose three pink holos of varying colors and holo strength; Hitsujiyama Park has the least holo and most opacity, Pour Me Another has a strong holo flame but is pretty sheer, and Laughs in Flowers has fine holo glitters mixed in to create a unique finish. These three polishes, when combined, create a distinct and cohesive look. I’m looking forward to pairing them again soon!



Pink Yet Lavender is a glitter topper, so I brushed it over the striped nails and sponged it on the others. I have to admit, this wasn’t quite what I expected when I started. In the bottle, the glitter looks more rose gold, likely due to the tinted pink base. On the nail, it pulls silver. I don’t mean to say I don’t like it, but I definitely expected more pink glitter, that’s why I chose all pinks for this mani. Pink Yet Lavender, at least, has some holo glitter in it that helps tie it all together. Also, sponging took a significant amount of product. You can see the fll line on the bottle; this is the first time I’ve used this polish and that’s where it is now.




I am having a lot of fun wearing this, all things considered. The stripes add a fun visual, the glitter adds sparkle, and the holo pushes it over the edge. This took a lot longer than the usual Monday mani, but I’m glad I spent the time on it. I used to push myself really hard to do nail art, and I feel like lately all I’ve been doing is wearing glitter over a base, and that feels lazy. I definitely need to get out of my lazy mani zone.

Hitsujiyama Park and other Elevation Polishes are sold in their online shop. Laughs in Flowers was an Addicted to Holos box exclusive from March 2015 and is no longer available; other Literary Lacquers are sold in their etsy shop. Pour Me Another is also a long-gone limited edition; other Model City Polishes are for sale on etsy. Pink Yet Lavender is also discontinued; OPI is sold in stores nationwide.

I bought these polishes 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


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


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


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

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


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, 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.

Colors Unknown, but probably all Sinful Colors


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 came to be, but I think it was also before the days of quick-dry top coat. Those dark, dark days.

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!


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.

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


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!

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


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: No Place Like Chrome

Happy Monday, reader! I hope you guys like shiny silver, because that’s all I’ve got today. This is Essie’s No Place Like Chrome without top coat. Silver for days!



I love the Mirror Metallics collection from Essie. I have them all, but I’ve only ever used two of them, and No Place Like Chrome is the only one I’ve used twice. I know metallic polishes come and go, everybody makes them at some point, but I’m so glad I’ve got these. The finish is so fun and unique, making any mani stand out. I’ve only ever worn this polish by itself, but someday I’ll get around to using it as an accent with something. Mirror polish makes any mani striking.



The last time I wore this bow was with another strong silver mani. I am actually really surprised by how easy these are to wear. Sure, it’s big, but it rarely gets caught on anything. It’s about as wide as my finger, so someone with thinner fingers might have trouble, but I love wearing these bows. It’s like wearing the biggest, tackiest engagement ring, except it’s glued to one of my nails.



In the sunlight, the metallic effect is just as apparent. It’s actually kind of blinding. The bow is especially ridiculous. Check out the flares on it.





No Place Like Chrome and other Essie polishes are sold in stores nationwide. My bow charm is from Born Pretty Store.

I bought these products myself.

Swatch Saturday: Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer Prototype NEB 1.0

Happy Saturday, reader! I’m wearing a BEGL prototype for this week’s swatch! This is NEB 1.0; I’m wearing three coats with one coat of Seche Vite top coat.





Prototype NEB 1.0 is a clear-based microglitter with black, silver, and blue holographic glitters. There are some larger dot and moon glitters floating around in the bottle as you can see from the bottle shots, but I didn’t get any of them on my nails. Application was very good; there was more glitter in this bottle than in a released polish, so I got full opacity in fewer coats than normal. I still used three, so my nails look a bit thick. However, it dried very quickly and didn’t leave a lot of texture behind. I still used top coat for shine and smoothness.



Are you tired of me talking about how great BEGL microglitters are? Because even though this one is only a prototype, it still has all the qualities I love in a microglitter. The colors, though varied, all complement each other. There are no holes in the coverage. The only real letdown was that I couldn’t get any of those larger glitters. I’ll get them someday!



In direct sunlight, this polish comes alive. It really does. The holographic effect is much stronger and the sparkle is legendary as a result. Today wasn’t the sunniest day, but if it was, I’d probably be blind from glitter exposure.






No other bottles of Prototype NEB 1.0 were made. Other Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquers are sold in their online shop.

I bought this polish myself.

Manicure Monday: Orange Jello Sandwich

It’s Manicure Monday again! Today’s look is a jelly sandwich, which is probably my favorite nail art technique. It always comes out so well! For this look, I used L’Oreal’s Mango Mamma over American Apparel’s Light Year, as well as Seche Vite top coat.



Mango Mamma is the perfect jelly. The color is bold but the coverage always stays sheer. It has the appearance of orange gelatin. I badly wish I had an orange-scented top coat, but I feel like this polish also deserves to smell like orange gelatin. As it’s the perfect jelly, the jelly sandwich was basically the only thing I could do with it. I can’t believe something like this came from a mainstream brand.



Light Year was maybe not the best glitter for this look, even though it turned out looking pretty cool. I knew brushing it on wasn’t the best application method because it’s liquidy, so I sponged it on. Even then, I got some holes in coverage, even though it didn’t look like it at the time. I guess it doesn’t matter, because what is on there sparkles wonderfully under Mango Mamma. Overall, the look feels flashy, stylish, and bold.



For this look, outdoors in direct sunlight is where it’s at. The orange looks a little washed out, but the glitter comes alive and looks its best. It almost looks kind of autumnal, with the orange jelly and the warm shades coming through in the holographic glitter. It’s like Thanksgiving in June!





Mango Mamma might be discontinued by L’Oreal; other L’Oreal polishes are sold in stores nationwide. American Apparel polishes have been discontinued as well.

I bought these polishes myself.

Swatch Saturday: Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer’s 2000 Years

Happy Saturday! I have the most gorgeous microglitter to show you today! This is Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer‘s 2000 Years, part of the huge Doctor Who collection! I’m wearing three coats of 2000 Years with one coat of Seche Vite.





2000 Years is a clear-based periwinkle, silver, navy, and lilac microglitter polish. Application was easy; the first coat was sparse, but coverage built with additional coats. I could have gotten away with only two, but I really wanted the third, just to really solidify the glitter. It dried with a slight texture; I used top coat to smooth it out.



I love microglitters so much. BEGL makes all my favorites because they have the best color combinations. There are so many colors of glitter in this bottle, but you barely notice, because they blend together so organically. It blows my mind that there’s a person actively thinking “yes, these are the glitters”. It’s just consistently beautiful, every single one.



It comes alive beautifully in the sunshine! It’s crazy sparkly, and I felt so glamorous wearing this outdoors.





2000 Years and other BEGL polishes are available from their online shop. For once, I’m wearing one that’s not discontinued!

I bought this polish myself.

Manicure Monday: Post-Vacation Drama

Happy Monday, dudes! It’s actually Tuesday where I am, and I’m just getting around to posting this because I spent my Monday partying for Memorial Day. I’m finally back from Hawaii, and this is the first mani I’ve done since I got back. It feels good to be back at my mani station; I’ve felt like half a person without having polish on for the past week. Do my hands look tanner? I shopped a lot in Hawaii, so I might do a Hawaiian beauty haul post in a bit, as well as some Island Girl polish swatches. Keep an eye out for those!

Anyway, this post-vacation look was done with Sonia Kashuk’s Smoke and Mirrors and Digital Nails‘s So Sparkle.



Smoke and Mirrors is a classic shimmer silver polish. This shade has been around forever and every brand has one. I even remember my mother rocking this silver back in the day. It’s shimmery, sparkly, and foil-like; it’s not as foily as something like Essie’s No Place Like Chrome, but it’s still very reflective. This polish is one that shows brush strokes pretty prominiently, and I can’t really see them in this one, which is really nice.



So Sparkly is amazing, and is easily the star of this manicure. Someone at my cookout today it looked like dreamy space glitter, and that’s the best way I can describe this polish. It’s got a teal to purple shift, red and blue glitters, silver flakies, and a holo effect throughout, though I can’t tell if it’s Spectraflair or fine holo glitters. I’ve been staring at my polish all day, and mostly the two with So Sparkle on. This polish is dramatic and gorgeous and everyone should have it.






I put the two together because I wanted a simple metallic look to help me ease back into my manicure and blogging routines. I thought about adding the usual 3D elements and opted not to. I didn’t want to do anything very complicated today, what with holiday barbecues and swimming, and I’m still pretty jet-lagged. I also have other things I need to do today. Like unpack.

Sonia Kashuk polishes are sold at Target. Digital Nails is sold on etsy.

I bought these polishes myself.

Manicure Monday: Blackheart Glam

Happy Monday!! For Manicure Monday this week, we’re feeling fancy high-end. For today’s look, I used Urban Decay’s Blackheart and Deborah Lippmann’s Glitter and Be Gay.



Urban Decay is a huge player in my daily makeup game, but I’ve only worn a few of their polishes. That’s why I’m super-thrilled to be wearing Blackheart this week. It’s a pretty nice polish: deep chocolate as a first impression, and upon closer inspection, a pink-to-gold shift appears. It reminds me of middle school, when I stuck to deep browns, plums, and gunmetals because my parents didn’t allow me to wear black polish. Good times! I’m pretty sure I had a Street Wear polish just like this.




I picked Glitter and Be Gay to go with Blackeart because both polishes used plenty of rich, warm colors. I mean, of course I had to choose gold to go with chocolate brown. Also, it’s not all gold, there are some cornflower blue glitters in there, and I think maybe some silver, but it turned into one big sparkly cluster. I regret that I was so heavy-handed with the glitter, and I wish I’d done some nails with brushed-on glitter, but the gradient turned out well enough. It looks like a mess in photos because it was so shiny, but I still like it.



In the sun, Blackheart isn’t as deep as it is indoors;actually, even indoors it doesn’t look all that dark, but I think that’s the glare from the glitter washing it out. You can see the pink and gold shimmers quite well outside, too. You can also see the individual glitters best out here, which is proof that they actually do pair well.





Blackheart was an Urban Decay limited edition and is sold out on, which is where you can find other UD polishes. Glitter and Be Gay is available wherever Deborah Lippmann is sold; mine is from Sephora as well.

I bought these polishes myself.

Manicure Monday: Shine Overload

Happy Monday! I got crazy with the shiny nails today, just because I could! For this look, I used Ciaté’s Monte Carlo over Orly’s Shine with one coat of Seche Vite top coat. Also there’s a huge rhinestone bow.



When I started this mani, I knew it wouldn’t photograph well at all. I’m okay with it, really. It’s so shiny in real life. Shine is this great shimmery metallic silver that reflects a lot of light, and Monte Carlo is filled with metallic and holographic glitters that makes it worse. It’s not really that over-the-top, I guess, it’s a pretty basic polish with glitter, but photography really was a challenge.




Monte Carlo is actually a pretty cool mix of glitter. It’s kind of a mess; the glitters — blue, pink, and holographic silver bars — don’t really go together, but the overall look is chaotic and fun. It’s neither fine nor chunky, but adds a pop of color and the shine of glitter to any under-color.



I feel like Shine maybe detracts from it a bit. I thought it would be a good under-color for Monte Carlo; since Monte Carlo already had a lot going on, I thought it needed a strong color under it, something that could hold the figurative weight of the glitter. In general, I do like the way it looks, but I think the silver shine, when the light hits it, overwhelms the subtleties of the glitter. Shine is one of the most aptly-named polishes ever. The following set of photos were taken outdoors in direct sunlight. I think the sunlight photos came out better because the light is better diffused, but I still had a little bit of a problem with the glare. The silver holo bars show up best here.





So let’s talk about the bow charm. It’s awesome, right? It’s ridiculous. They’re wider than my whole finger and it’s only a matter of time before they pop off somewhere and get lost forever. I couldn’t resist it, though. I really wanted to make this look even more obnoxious than it already was.



Shine is available wherever Orly is sold; mine is from Sally Beauty Supply. Ciaté is sold at Sephora. The gigantic bow is from Born Pretty Store.

I bought these items myself.

Manicure Monday: Confetti Disco

Welcome back to Manicure Monday! Today’s mani is made up entirely of glitter, it’s kind of insane. Also, there’s some Wacie Nail Company restock info coming, so keep reading! For this look, I used Sinful Colors’s Queen of Beauty as the base, Digital Nails‘s Spectraflair top coat over that, and Wacie Nail Company’s Handful of Confetti for the glitter accents. All nails are topped with one coat of Seche Vite top coat. Also, these photos are taken outdoors in partly cloudy conditions.



Queen of Beauty is a veteran in my collection; it must have been around 2008 when I bought it. When I started this manicure, I seriously doubted whether I’d have enough to get me through the whole mani. This polish is great because it’s so versatile; I don’t think it was intended to be worn as a full-coverage microglitter polish, because you can see some teeny-tiny gaps in coverage, but it works pretty well as one. It also looks great as a topper, which is how I’ve worn it in the past. Also, it’s shiny. It’s wicked shiny. Light bounces off this like you wouldn’t believe. You can see the glare in some of these photos. It’s the reason a lot of these photos are washed out and blurry. I love it.




I got the Spectraflair top coat out because I wanted to take it just a step further. The chunky rainbow glitter has a slightly holo base, and I thought it would look weird with some of the nail being holographic and some not, so I thought the holo top coat would even it out. As it turned out, it was cloudy and you can barely see the holo effect in either polish. It’s pretty visible in the accent nails, but I think that’s because the accent glitter has Spectraflair in it as well. On the nails without it, you can barely tell. At least I know it’s there. It’s kind of a fun little secret.




This set of photos were taken indoors in the studio; some with flash, and some without. This mani definitely looked better in the sun, but they always do.



Handful of Confetti is making its debut today, and I’m really excited! I don’t want to say too much about it, because I have an entire post dedicated to it I’ll be posting on Wednesday. I love ridiculous glitter toppers, and I know they’re becoming passé in indie polish these days, but I still love them and I want to cling to them forever. I chose it as the accent for this mani because it couldn’t be more different from the base polish; every bit of glitter stands out from it, it adds tons of color, and it’s interesting to look at. I think it’s a pretty fun look.




One more photo: here’s a shot of the bottle, just so you can see how empty it is. I haven’t come this close to finishing a bottle (of polish) in years.


Queen of Beauty and other Sinful Colors are sold nationwide; mine is from Walgreens. Digital Nails polishes, as well as their Spectraflair top coat, are available from their etsy shop. Handful of Confetti will release Wednesday, February 24, at 2 PM EST; watch this space for more information.

I bought two of these polishes myself; I made one.