My First Attempt at Nail Art!

Hello everyone! I hope you all enjoyed your weekend.  Mine was pretty relaxing.  I just watched a lot of TV and spent some quality time with my wonderful boyfriend.

Today I want to share with you my first ever attempt at nail art.  It came out pretty decent! I got the inspiration from this YouTube video.  If you like nail art, you should check out this channel.  It has lots and lots of easy tutorials for all kinds of pretty designs.

The video I followed was for a Heart Leopard design.  I changed up the colors and didn’t use the heart.  I was drawn to this design because I like the way it’s only on part of your nails.  I’ll call this a Pink and Silver Leopard Gradient, for all intents and purposes.

Leopard Gradient

Leopard Gradient

Thumb close-up

Thumb close-up

My thumb nail came out the best, but I really love the design on all of my nails.   I wish I had used a darker pink so the silver didn’t steal the focus, but overall I’m very pleased.  I’ll definitely be doing more leopard designs in the future.  It’s so easy and very trendy right now.

I used OPI Don’t Burst My Bubble for the base color.  The leopard spots are Nicole by OPI Naturally and they’re outlined in OPI I Haven’t the Foggiest.  I applied one coat of Seche Vite top coat to finish up the look.

For step by step instructions, watch the video by Cute Polish (linked above).

So what do you think of this design? Will you try it? Let me know in the comments!

OPI San Francisco Collection Swatches

Hi everyone! I hope you guys have had a great week and are getting ready for the weekend.  Today I want to share three beautiful polishes from the OPI San Francisco collection with you.  Normally when a new OPI collection comes out, I’m all over it.  There was something way too familiar about this collection though.  Most of the colors look like stuff OPI has put out within the last year with their Germany, Skyfall and Euro Centrale collections.  The three polishes I’m sharing today are the only ones that were original enough for me to buy.

First is a stunning metallic silver called I Haven’t the Foggiest.  I used two coats of polish to cover minor imperfections, but the formula is so wonderful that you could get away with one coat.

I Haven’t the Foggiest is extremely shiny and reflective.  I had to take a picture with flash to show off how shiny it is.  The second picture with no flash still does it justice.

I Haven't the Foggiest (with flash)

I Haven’t the Foggiest (with flash)

I Haven't the Foggiest

I Haven’t the Foggiest

Next we have Peace, Love and OPI.  This color is gorgeous! It’s a color-shifting polish that goes from gray to purple to sage.  My camera didn’t quite do it justice, but the shifting adds a lot of interest.  This is a perfect color for fall and just overall very cool.  The swatches below are with two coats of polish, which you really need to build up the color.

Peace, Love and OPI

Peace, Love and OPI

Peace, Love and OPI (best photo of the color shift)

Peace, Love and OPI (best photo of the color shift)

Finally we have one of the Liquid Sand colors, Alcatraz Rocks! This polish is absolutely beautiful, and one of my favorite Liquid Sand colors OPI has debuted.  It’s a deep purple, almost blue color with multicolored glitter.  Of course like all other Liquid Sand polishes, this dries to a matte textured finish.  You need two coats to get the optimal color and texture and no top coat.  Alcatraz Rocks! is my favorite polish from the San Francisco collection.

Alcatraz Rocks!

Alcatraz Rocks!

Alcatraz Rocks!

Alcatraz Rocks!

In honor of this collection, I want to share some pictures of me in San Francisco.  These were taken when I visited my uncle for spring break in 2007.  I really love San Francisco and I think it’s one of the most beautiful places I’ve visited.

Me on Alcatraz Island

Me on Alcatraz Island

Me and my uncle Darryn in front of the Golden Gate Bridge

Me and my uncle Darryn in front of the Golden Gate Bridge

I hope you enjoyed my swatches and San Francisco pictures! Are you planning on getting any of the OPI San Francisco collection?

The C&NP Sunday Special!

Hi everyone! Today I’ve got something extra special for you all: two posts that will be combined into one.  I have two sets of gorgeous swatches that I just couldn’t wait to share, so I decided to post them both today.  Enjoy!

My first swatch is another bright, summery shade that will look great with just about anything.  It’s Essie In the Cab-ana from the 2013 Resort Shades collection.  You would not believe how incredibly difficult these polishes are to find right now.  In the Cab-ana is especially popular, so getting it was tough, but I managed to find it in Target.  This vibrant blue color reminds me of the sunny Caribbean beaches.  It’s a perfect shade to wear if you’re pining for a little time by the sea.

As always with Essie, the formula for In the Cab-ana was flawless.  No balding and opaque in two coats.  Pictures below show the polish with one coat of Seche Vite.

Essie In the Cab-ana

Essie In the Cab-ana

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In the Cab-ana in sunlight

In the Cab-ana in sunlight

Look at that beautiful shine!

Look at that beautiful shine!

You can find Essie polishes at Ulta, Walgreens, Target and other major drug/department stores.  You may be able to find a Resort Colors display if you’re lucky.  Let me know if you’re able to find these anywhere!

Alright lucky readers, here’s the second set of swatches for the Sunday Special.

I present to you Honey Rider, a Liquid Sand polish from the OPI Bond Girls collection.  This polish is also perfect for summer because it reminds me of the sunshine.  Honey Rider is absolutely breathtaking in sunlight.  Keep reading for pictorial evidence.

I did notice that Honey Rider has a bit of a thicker formula than the other Liquid Sand polishes, but that didn’t bother me.  Application was smooth and I got great coverage in two coats.  I did not use a top coat because I like the texture; however, you’re welcome to apply a top coat for a glossy finish.

OPI Liquid Sand in Honey Rider

OPI Liquid Sand in Honey Rider

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Honey Rider in sunlight = spectacular

Honey Rider in sunlight…simply spectacular

You can buy the OPI Bond Girls collection at Ulta for $9.00 each.  All shades are Liquid Sand polishes.  Do you plan to pick any up?

I hope you all enjoy the rest of your Sunday and I’ll see you next time with some more fabulous swatches.

Sally Hansen Fuzzy Coat Swatches and Review

Hello everyone! Happy Tuesday! I hope you guys are having a great week so far.  Does anyone have any plans next week for Memorial Day? I don’t have anything special planned, but I’m definitely glad to have a holiday off!

Today I bring you something that can only be described as bizarre.  I know textured polishes are “in” this season (like OPI Liquid Sand and Zoya Pixie Dust), but Sally Hansen has created a product that I just don’t understand.  It’s called Fuzzy Coat.  These polishes have fibers in them and when you paint them on it looks like your nails are fuzzy (think hideous fuzzy angora sweater).  I’m really not sure where this idea came from, but I thought it would be fun to at least try it out.

Here’s my mani for this week.  It’s just three simple coats of OPI I Theodora You and one coat of Seche Vite top coat.  I applied this polish on Sunday.

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OPI I Theodora You

OPI I Theodora You

Before I get to the Fuzzy Coat, I do have a simple request of my fellow beauty bloggers.  If you guys have tried I Theodora You, could you please give me some advice on application? I absolutely love the color, but every time I try to wear it, it streaks so badly and leaves yucky bald patches.  I can only wear it for a day or two before it gets on my nerves.  If you have any words of wisdom, please let me know!

Ok, so on to the Fuzzy Coat.  I used Fuzzy Coat in Wool Lite (strange name, huh?) and just applied it over I Theodora You since the colors are very similar

Two coats of Sally Hansen Fuzzy Coat over OPI I Theodora You

Two coats of Sally Hansen Fuzzy Coat over OPI I Theodora You

Close up

Close up

Fuzzy Coat bottle

Fuzzy Coat bottle

I found application to be messy.  The fibers do tend to stray on to the sides of your finger.  Also, they clump and don’t distribute evenly across the nail. I didn’t really like the way this looked, so I’m going to say that fuzzy nails are a trend that I just can’t get behind.  I removed the polish after wearing it long enough to photograph it for this entry.  Removal was surprisingly easy, which is a plus if you’re going to be trying the product.

You can purchase Sally Hansen Fuzzy Coat at Target for $5.49.

So what do you guys think? Have you tried Fuzzy Coat? Will you? Let me know in the comments.

OPI Euro Centrale Swatches

Hello everyone! I’m so sorry that I haven’t been keeping up with posting here.  A lot has been going on in the past couple of weeks, so I haven’t had time to post, but I have been swatching.  I’m excited to announce that I have a new job with BB&T and will start there next Monday, so hopefully that will give me more time to keep up with blogging.

I know the OPI Euro Centrale polishes are kind of old news now, but I’ve been collecting them since they first became available.  I recently decided to try out some of the ones I have and they’re gorgeous.  Without further delay, I give you OPI…Eurso Euro.

OPI...Eurso Euro without top coat

OPI…Eurso Euro without top coat

This polish has a jelly feel to it, and normally I’m horrible with applying jelly polishes.  Eurso Euro has great coverage and is very pigmented, so application wasn’t an issue.  I love the dark, rich blue color and the polish is super shiny, even without a top coat.

Without top coat

Without top coat

With SV top coat

With Seche Vite top coat

OPI...Eurso Euro in natural light

OPI…Eurso Euro in natural light

Next up is I Saw…U Saw…We Saw…Warsaw.  This is a beautiful, inky navy blue polish.  On a side note, I found it awkward to tell people who asked the name of this polish since it’s so long.

I Saw...You Saw...We Saw...Warsaw

I Saw…U Saw…We Saw…Warsaw

Application was great as the formula was nice and smooth.  I found clean up to be rather difficult due to extreme smearing, but this is true with most blue polishes.

We Saw Warsaw

We Saw Warsaw

In natural light

In natural light

Finally, we have Vant to Bite My Neck? This is a super vampy plum purple.  I didn’t have any issues with applying this one either.  The only trouble I had was with clean up because this polish smears and stains pretty easily.

Vant to Bite My Neck?

Vant to Bite My Neck?

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Overall, I found these three colors from the Euro Centrale collection to be fantastic.  They’re versatile because you can wear them in any season.  They were all very easy to apply and dried with a high shine.  I love these so much that I can’t pick a favorite.

You can buy the Euro Centrale shades from Ulta stores and now on Ulta.com! They retail for $9.00 each.

Have you tried any of the Euro Centrale colors yet? Which is your favorite? Let me know in the comments!

Sally Hansen Salon Effects Polish Strips Review

Hello readers! Today I’m reviewing something a bit different than the products I normally gravitate towards.  Sally Hansen Polish Strips aren’t something new as they’ve been on the market for awhile now, but I’m just now trying them out.  I want to start getting into nail art, but I’m not really good at stuff like that.  I figured that these strips would be an easy and fun way to add a little flair to my manicures.  When i saw them on sale at Walgreen’s for 2 for $12, I snatched them up.

First up is a pretty pink zebra print called Animal Instinct.

Sally Hansen Salon Effects in "Animal Instinct" and OPI Black Onyx

Sally Hansen Salon Effects in “Animal Instinct” and OPI Black Onyx

I used the polish strip as an accent nail and painted the rest of nails with OPI Black Onyx.

To apply the polish strip, you first push your cuticle back and shape and buff your nail.  A nail file/buffer and orange stick are included in the package.  You then select the right size strip for the nail you’re applying it to, then match up the end that best fits your cuticle.  Then you stick the strip to your nail, smooth it out with the orange stick and you’re done.  It’s a very quick process, but can get a little messy.  When you break the strip from the backing, it can tear so you need to be careful.  Also, when I was stretching the strip to fit my nail, it broke so once it was applied it looked like I already had a little tip wear.  Other than that, the strip was fairly easy to apply and looked great.

I’m not very pleased with this manicure since I did it in a hurry before work yesterday.  Aside from the messy application, I think the colors look pretty good together.  Next time I do this I’m probably going to use pink because the black is a little dark for spring time.

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Close up of the strip

Close up of the strip

You can see a little bit of tip wear from the breakage

You can see a little bit of tip wear from the breakage

100_0130The box says the strips are supposed to last for up to 10 days.  I can’t say how long they last because I took this manicure off today.  I did have to top coat one of the strips because it had a little tear, but that fixed it right up.

Today, I did a manicure with the other set of strips I got.  These are a super cute skull and heart print called Heart Breaker.  I used the strip as an accent nail and painted the rest of my nails with Essie Marshmallow.

Sally Hansen Salon Effects in "Heart Breaker" and Essie Marshmallow

Sally Hansen Salon Effects in “Heart Breaker” and Essie Marshmallow

I had the same difficulty with stretching the strips this time and it didn’t quite cover all of my nail.  This strip didn’t tear though, so the tips look much better.  Overall, I think this combination makes for a much cuter manicure.  I also added Seche Vite to both of these strips to make them shinier.

Close up of the strip

Close up of the strip

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The Salon Effects Strips are a neat idea, but they’re a little difficult to work with.  I think once I get the hang of applying them, I’ll be more pleased.  I do like how they come in a variety of cute designs and are pretty easy to remove.  Have you tried the Sally Hansen Polish Strips? What do you think? I’d love to know, so make sure you tell me in the comments!

Super Bowl OPI Style!

Happy Super Bowl Eve to all! Even though my team (the Packers) didn’t make it to the Super Bowl this year, I’m still excited to watch the game, enjoy the commercials and eat delicious food.

Earlier this week I saw this awesome idea for a manicure posted on OPI’s Facebook.  I knew immediately that I wanted to do it.

opimanibowl

I’m cheering for the Ravens this year, so I decided to deck my nails out in black, purple and gold.  I already had Black Onyx and Goldeneye, so I ran to Ulta to pick up a purple polish.  Pamplona Purple isn’t close to the Ravens purple so I searched the racks of OPI polish for a closer color.  I couldn’t find an OPI purple that would do the trick, so I ended up getting China Glaze Coconut Kiss.  It worked wonderfully and is much closer to the Ravens color than the polish suggested by OPI.  I’m sorry that I couldn’t do a full OPI mani, but I’m happy with the way it turned out.

OPI Mani Bowl polishes(From left to right)Black Onyx, China Glaze Coconut Kiss and Goldeneye

OPI Mani Bowl polishes
(From left to right)
Black Onyx, China Glaze Coconut Kiss and Goldeneye

I’m horrible at nail art, so unfortunately I couldn’t get super fancy with this manicure.  I just did three purple nails, one black accent nail and one gold accent nail.  I love the color combo on my fingers!  I must also say that Goldeneye is a beautiful color.  I bought it when the Skyfall collection first debuted and it was sitting in my box of untried polishes.  I’ve been waiting for an occasion to use it so I’m glad I happened across the Mani Bowl! I’m very pleased with the formula and I only had to apply two coats because it has great coverage.

I’m also excited about Coconut Kiss because it’s my first China Glaze polish! When I opened the bottle I was worried about the brush.  OPI polishes have a wide brush that makes it easier for me to apply the polish.  The China Glaze brush is long and skinny.  I was happy to find out that the polish went on smoothly and the brush provided good coverage.  I used two coats of Coconut Kiss for this manicure.

In case you were wondering, Black Onyx is one of the best black polishes I’ve ever used, which is saying a lot (oh hello gothic high school days!).  It applies smoothly and is opaque in one coat, but I used two because I wanted a darker black.

Below are the pictures of my mani.  I used OPI Chip Skip and one coat of Seche Vite on all nails.

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So, are you watching the game? Who are you cheering for? Would you like to participate in the OPI Mani Bowl? I’d love to hear your responses in the comments!