Monday, November 30, 2009

Bloom - Aspen + Matte

A short note to Cecilia and Lucy, who won the November Giveaway.  I posted your lacquers today so you should receive them in the next week or so!

So, ladies, we have our first matte experimental, featuring Bloom's Aspen with an Essie Matte About You Topcoat.

At first, I was so disappointed with this.  Because Aspen is a pure white glitter, with no other colours, the matte top coat just flattened the colour, leaving it looking like ceiling tiles.  It seemed like all of the magic was lost.

However, I've gotten used to this and, whilst it's not what I expected and/or wanted, it has its own unique charm.  For a start, as a gloss glitter, Aspen does not work in a conservative work environment.  However, with a matte topcoat, it works beautifully and is totally appropriate.

And, really, I'm probably getting too old to be wearing blinging glitters.  This is a great compromise between wanting to stay true to my glitter roots but making it more age appropriate (this is just my opinion, I'm a little conservative when it comes to glitters).

In short, this works.  Sort of.  What do you guys think?

Bloom - Aspen

Bloom released it's B Collection a few weeks ago.  Despite launching a mammoth 70 shades, I found that a number were repackaged hues from other collections and/or colours that form part of Bloom's core colour range, hence I didn't pick up many.

What I did splurge on was some of the glitters.  I've previously trialled Seoul, whose 'opaque in two coats' grey glitter raised my hopes that all the glitters would be opaque in two coats.

As you can see, however, not all glitters are created equal.  Aspen is a white glitter that, funnily enough, reminds me of snow.

Unlike Seoul, this is not an opaque in two coats glitter.  It's not even an opaque in four coats glitter. The swatch here is four heavy coats and there is still one heck of a visible nail line.

As disappointing as it is that this isn't opaque, not all is lost.  This is a great top coat for creme lacquers.  Because it lacks any yellow undertones, it gives other lacquers a tinsel-esque sheen.  Which makes it perfect for the upcoming holiday season.

So ladies, what do we think of Aspen?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Sunday Sneak Peak

I confess.  After having bought Essie's Matte About You, I'm now madly trying to mattify every lacquer that I have.  I'm not just a convert of the matte look.  I'm probably its biggest fan.

So, this week, I've got five great Australian lacquers from Bloom and kit Cosmetics for you.  I'm going to see if I can get 10 different looks out of the five lacquers using the Matte About You top coat. 

I'm sure some will work and some won't (I don't mind a good nail train wreck sometimes - it keeps me honest).  But they will all be interesting.  I hope.

As for the picture of the ice-cream.  Well, why have one flavour when you can have two.  Geddit?  One lacquer can have two looks?  Two Flavours?  Mmm, I might need to work on this analogy thing.

November Giveaway! We have winners

Thanks to everyone who entered my November Giveaway.  I love doing this blog and I love being able to give back to my readers who, and I hope this doesn't sound too corny, make me smile on a daily basis.  :-)

Just as a reminder, the winner of this giveaway will receive a new and unopened BYS Glam Glitter Mini Kit.  The runner up will receive three bottles of Glitter Gal's holographic lacquers which have been swatched by me here, here and here.

Congratulations C'est Moi, Cecilia, you win the BYS Glam Glitter Mini Kit.  I'm so glad these lacquers are going to such a lovely and sweet person!

And congratulations to the fabulous and wonderful, Lucy, who wins the Glitter Gal holos.  Lucy is one of the nicest people in the nail blog world.  Actually, one of the nicest people in the world, period.  As we say in Australia, 'I'm totally stoked' that you've won these.

Ladies, if you could please email me with your addresses, I will post these out for you in time for Christmas.

I enjoy doing these giveaways so stay tuned on December 12th 2009, when I launch my Christmas Giveaway.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Naily News #10

My November Giveaway closes TODAY! Click here to find out how you can win a BYS Glam Glitter Mini Kit or 3 Glitter Gal Holos.

Leanne tries her hand at marbling, amongst other things, with fantastic results.

If that isn't enough marbling for you, check out Thriszha's marbling magnificance.

Ginger totally kicks my butt with her konad-ing.

Kat has haulage.

Skye works some Hocus Pocus into her manicure.

Nixxy tributes Ben Barnes.  And does a lovely gold manicure in the process.

Nosaby does orange glitter - and it looks wonderful!

Pfft, Naive Nails does another fab Konadicure - are you girls determined to shame me into competence?!

Helen is making me want chocolate.

Amarena is fast becoming the Franken Queen.  Check out her amazing blue.

Kate is determined to ruin my bank account.  It's Dior.  It's Fabulous.

You know, I never really care what colour The Hungry Asian wears.  I just love looking at Kae's nails!

Jodie does a wonderful pink manicure.  It's just adorable!

Mary has an AMAZING Korres Giveaway.  You have to enter.  It's that simple.

Is it coral?  Is it orange?  You decide what colour Kellie Gonzo's manicure is!

Have a great weekend ladies.  I'm going to a friends house for lunch today and then will spend tonight watching movies.  What are you guys up to?

Friday, November 27, 2009

BYS - La Bamba

There's another song to get into your head, ladies.

La Bamba is a neon pink with a subtle hint of shimmer.

Like Sexy Samba, the application on this is great. The lacquer is creamy without being too gloopy, it glides on effortlessly, is opaque in two coats, and dries to a high shine.

Unfortunately, this never get to bottle colour.  This swatch is six coats.  Six!  Although it was opaque in two, I kept on adding coats in the hope that, eventually, bottle colour would come.  But it never did.  :-(

All up, though, the BYS Carnival Collection is a runaway success.  I will be using every colour regularly over the upcoming summer.  I'm an official BYS convert! 

In other news, I bought light umbrellas and light stands today on eBAY.  What does this mean?  Well it means an improvement in the quality of my photos.  I take my photos with an SLR camera in natural light, which works most of the time.  Except when there's no good natural light.  The umbrellas and light stands will ensure my lighting is more consistent, which means you guys get a more accurate view of the lacquers.  It's a win-win!

BYS - Sexy Samba

Firstly, I'd like to share some good (non nail related) news with you all.  I've been promoted at work!  This is really exciting news for me as I've worked really hard for the last 18 months since I joined the company.  I'm glad all that hard work has paid off.

Secondly, I'd like to wish all my American readers a lovely Thanksgiving.  I think this is a lovely holiday, if for no other reason than it's an excuse to eat a Turducken.  As we say in Australia, 'have a good one!'

Sexy Samba - I always thought a Samba was sexy by default, but clearly, it can be even more sexy - is a fantastic colour.

I can't quite describe Sexy Samba as an unapologetic coral, because there are definitely red and orange undertones running through it, but it's definitely from the coral family.

Out of all the colours I've trialled, this one has the best application.  It is creamy, easy to apply and is opaque in two coats.  And it requires no top coat.  The swatch here is sans top coat.  I just love it when I can see my reflection in my nails!

This is my favourite of the collection so far.  It's infinitely wearable and just looks fabulous on the nail.  What do you guys think?

Thursday, November 26, 2009

BYS - Copacabana

Using Copacabana from BYS is like the story of the ugly duckling.

I'm not going to lie to you ladies.  The first coat?  It looks like cat sick.  No fooling.  Cat sick.  Bad cat sick.  Which isn't unusual for a yellow.  But this was spectacularly bad.

Second coat, however, and the wondrousness of this lacquer is revealed. This is an extraordinary primary yellow.  There's no shimmer, no glimmer, no glitter.  It's yellow.  Unapologetically so.

It takes four coats to get opaque but, once it's there, the result is quite amazing.   It's like liquid silk on the nails.  Super shiny.  Super glossy.  Super fab.

This is now the third lacquer I've tried by the BYS Carnival Range and I'm falling more in lust as the days go on.  Who knew something so cheap could be so amazing?

BYS - Ipanema

Ok, hands up how many of you have 'The Girl from Ipanema' in your head right about now?  If not, I'm sure I just sowed the seed that will result in you humming that song for the rest of the day.

Ipanema is a bright blue with a hint of yellow sparke through it.  The yellow is barely perceptible but it's there and it's like a little secret between you and your nails.

The formula on this is typical of blues.  It goes on streaky but, with enough coats (this one took four to get opaque), it dries to an shiny, glossy finish (this swatch is without top coat).

This is a colour that doesn't ever really look like the bottle.  The bottle looks like a solid creme.  This comes out looking more aqua and with a shimmer.  Go figure!

Regardless, I consider this another succsss.  BYS lacquers can be hit and miss - and, really, for $3 each, I don't mind - but this collection is proving itself to be the bargain buy of the century.

What do you guys think?  Is this a blue you would consider wearing?  Is that song out of your head as yet?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

BYS - Rio de Janeiro

As you may remember, I recently purchased the BYS Carnival Range. These hues have me so excited. They're bright, cheerful and so on trend for this upcoming summer.

The first I tried was Rio de Janeiro, an exquisite apple green.

The formula wasn't tricky to work with, however I needed a few coats to get to opaque. The swatch on the right is three coats and, as you can see, there is still some visible nail line. I suspect that four will get you to bottle colour.

Luckily, the formula is pretty thin, hence drying time is a breeze and you can afford to do multiple coats in order to get it opaque.

Speaking of colour, isn't this just amazing. I am so in love with my nails in this colour, I want to take them out for a romantic dinner and a movie.

All up, this is a great start to the collection. I hope all of the colours are as beautiful and easy to work with as this one.

Mecca Cosmetica - Dionyza - Part II

For this look, I used Dionyza as the base and Helen as the Konad Stamp (the stamp is from a sample pack).

I'm really annoyed that the photo of this just didn't turn out the way I wanted because this is a gorgeous manicure. Definitely click on the photo and have a look at my middle finger.

The yellow flower pattern is delicate against the strong and bright blue. It's a great contrast of colours and is the perfect summer manicure.

So, sign me up to the Mecca Cosmetica Lacquer Fan Club. Whilst I have been skeptical of these in the past, believing that they're overpriced and unoriginal, my mind has been completely turned around.

The formula on these is up there with the best. They're luscious, the colours are on trend, and I just want every single one of them.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Mecca Cosmetica - Dionyza - Part I

Be still my beating heart.

Allow me to present..... Dionyza.

As with yellows, I find blues pretty hard to deal with. However - and I'm sorry to break your hearts on this, because I know some of you are lemming these something fierce but can't get hold of them - this is the perfect blue.

Application is a breeze. You could get away with one coat, but stick with two coats and you will be in opaque heaven.

This dries without streaks. Without bald spots. Evenly. Shiny. It really is absolutely faultless.

And the blue? It's a beautiful, bright, almost neon blue. It's like having a beautiful, clear sky on your nails.

I have no idea what Mecca are doing with their formulas, but the new collection is seriously up there with Chanel and Co. It's improved out of sight and the result is lacquers that, for me, anyway, are now worth their hefty price tag.

Mecca Cosmetica - Helen - Part II

The Part I should have given it away that there might be a Part II of Mecca Cosmetica's Helen.

And here it is! I have reached for the Konad again and I think I might be onto a winner.

This is Helen as the base, with Dionyza (the blue colour) used for the Konad stamp (plate #57). Definitely click to see the larger image.

I think this looks so cute. It's absolute perfect for the lovely, warmer weather we're having here in Australia as we head into summer. I can see myself using this manicure alot.

As for how Mecca lacquers fare with the Konad, they do remarkably well. Because they are quite thin lacquers and not opaque on the first coat, they tend to take on the colour of the base. So, you don't get the blue in all its glory. You get the blue with a hint of yellow peaking through.

I love this because it makes the manicure look more natural - if that makes sense - but it may not suit those of you who love bold, opaque designs.

All up, despite my Konading skills (and I am getting better at this everytime, so it's true that practice makes perfect), this is s great little manicure.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Mecca Cosmetica - Helen - Part I

When Mecca Cosmetica released their new collection, I wasn't overly impressed. At least two of the colours appear to be repackaged hues from the Spring 2009 Collection, which I've reviewed previously.

However, I couldn't resist the yellow and blue from this collection.

Helen is a creamy, lemon-esque yellow.

Now, I don't know about you guys but I struggle with yellow hues. They never get fully opaque and the finish is always.... off. Plus, they make me looked jaundiced which I don't think is ever a good look.

This is the first yellow I've tried that is opaque in two coats and looks glorious, shiny, stunning. I absolutely love it.

Typical of Mecca, the formula is perfect. It's creamy without being too gloopy. It dries to a high shine and it lasts for as long as I want it to (I wore this for five days before I saw minor tip wear. And when I say, minor, I mean micro).

All up, I'd say this is a must have for anyone who loves yellow. It's certainly going into my favourites collection!

You've Got Nail Rave - Seri

I've had a few of you ask me about how I take care of my hands.

The truth is, I am really lazy with my hands. And I'm kind of incompetent when it comes to cuticle removal and nail shape. Hence, beyond daily cuticle oil and cream, I don't do a great deal for them myself.

I do, however, have a manicurist that I see on a fortnightly basis. Here in Melbourne, there is a definite divide between the chop shops (that are super cheap, but also super brutal on your hands) and the more expensive salons (which are expensive but you get a much better service).

My manicurist, Lisa, who works out of Melbourne hair salon, Seri, is an anomaly to this rule. She offers chop shop prices (I pay $25 for a manicure, which is pretty cheap for Melbourne CBD) but excellent service. She's prompt, her tools are always spotlessly clean, and my hands always look a million dollars when I walk out of the salon.

Do you have a manicurist you love? What do you love about him/her?

On the flip side, tell me about your worst manicure experiences. I once went to a chop shop where the manicurist systematically tore every cuticle. I was so traumatised by the experience that I didn't see another manicurist for years!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sunday Sneak Peak

This week is all about Australian lacquers, hence the picture of a kangaroo!

I'm planning to start off the week with Dionyza and Helen from Mecca Cosmetica's new limited edition collection. These are true to form Mecca Cosmetica lacquers - creamy, pigmented and super easy to work with.

The second half of the week will be about Be Yourself's Carnival Collection. If you want loud, summery colours, these are most definitely it. Looking at them is like looking at a bowl of Skittles!

Don't forget that entries close for my November Giveaway on Saturday. If you're a follower of YGN, then you don't need to do anything else - consider yourself entered. If you're not a follower, be sure to click here for your chance to win.

Have a great week everyone!

PS If you take a look to the right, I am now on Twitter! If you have a Twitter account, let me know in the comments so that I can stalk you legally..... :-)

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Naily News #9

Have you entered my November Giveaway? Click here to find out how you can win a BYS Mini Glitter Glame Kit or a set of Glitter Gal holographics.

Diana both inspires and delights with an Indian Paisley manicure drawn freehand.

Kate finds a beautiful work safe creme from CND.

Nosaby greys up my world with a Sally Hansen cult classic.

All week, Pink Ginger has been trialling Sally Hansen's Project Runway Collection. My favourite has to be Purple Heart - what a stunning colour!

Amarena does a napkin manicure that is to die for. It's amazing.

Skye shares some more Glitter Gal love? Have you guys bought from this fab Aussie company as yet?

It's Spring here in Australia, and Naive Nails does the perfect manicure for us Southern Hemisphere ladies.

Have you looked at KonAddict's manicures lately? They are a work of art, and they all come with instructions.

Danielle does a gorgeous gold manicure. The girl is an artist!

Glitter Addicts, you won't want to miss some Mary Magic.

You want more glitter. Then check out Nixxy's 'I Miss You'.

Kaz creates a Franken called Sexy Party.

Friday, November 20, 2009

You've Got Nail Rave - Essie Matte About You

As I mentioned last week, I finally got around to buying Essie's Matte About You.

I've been trialling the product on my Asos Paint Pots all week (and definitely click to see the larger versions).

The formula of this is really easy to use. It glides on like a regular top coat - smooth and glossy. After about 10 seconds on the nail, it magically turns the lacquer from gloss to matte. Right before your eyes. It's like a science experience from school, but a thoroughly more interesting one.

I've heard alot of bad things regarding longevity with matte topcoats, in terms of increasing shininess on the nail as the days goes past, and severe tip wear. To be honest, I did find that, by day three, my nails weren't as matte as they were on day one, and that my tips had become shiny again.

However, I think this kind of wear is standard, regardless of what top coat you use. I just applied a further coat of Matte About You and the finish was back to what it was on day one.

All up, I am absolutely thrilled with Matte About You. I want to matte-ify everything I find!

Have you tried Matte About You (or any other matte topcoat)? How did you find it?

Asos Paint Pots - Mary Kate

The final Asos Paint Pot I'm trialling is my favourite.

Mary Kate is, I presume, a tribute to Mary Kate Olsen (although if there is another Mary Kate I don't know about, please let me know in the comments). And, wow, doesn't this just scream Mary Kate.

This is an amazing black jelly with the tiniest, subtlest gold glitter running through it.

It is glorious. It glides on beautifully, is opaque in two coats and, like all of the lacquers I've trialled this week, dries to an incredible shine. Despite the glitter factor, this dries beautifully smooth, without the need for a top coat (although for longevity, I'd always recommend a top coat).

Isn't this just a fabby colour? I'm officially in love. Again. Asos Paint Pots, can we run away to a deserted island and get married?

Stay tuned later today when I do a review of Essie's Matte About You. I've trialled the topcoat on all three of my Asos Paint Pots and - trust me - they look even more stunning as mattes than they do as gloss lacquers.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Asos Paint Pots - Agyness

Agyness is inspired by fabby supermodel, Agyness Deyn.

And, if any colour can represent Agyness, it has to be this glorious royal purple.

Once again, the formula is exquisite. Two coats is more than enough to get to opaque (as shown, left) and the finish is extraordinarily shiny.

Now, as you guys all know, I've never been a big fan of purples, but, thanks to Agyness, I'll say this publicly:


I'm in love. I want purple, purple, purple. So, ladies, tell me your favourite purple and/or purples you think I should try.

Leave me your suggestions in the comments...

Asos Paint Pots - Pixie

Ladies, allow me to present to you the first of my Asos Paint Pots Autumn/Winter 2009 Collection.

Each of the three colours in this collection is inspired by 'style icons'. Now, I'm not too sure which Pixie this is inspired by - Pixie Geldof (I hope not) or Pixie Lott (now that's more like it) - but this is a beautiful, primary green.

The formula on this is truly outstanding. It is the perfect gloopiness, without being too thick on the nail. Two coats gets you to opaque, although I think three gives you a perfect finish. And you don't need a top coat to get a shine (the swatch on the right is two coats and no top coat).

This is an amazing green - unlike anything I've ever seen. Totally unapologetic, bright and absolutely perfect for both winter or summer.

What do you guys think? Do you like this green?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

butter LONDON - Perfect Prezzie - Part II

The final nail art I trialled with the butter LONDON Christmas 2009 Collection is Perfect Prezzie with a Fairylights Konad.

This is a superb colour combination. Even with my oh-so-crummy Konading, these work so well together.

The creaminess of Perfect Prezzie acts as the perfect backdrop for the more blinging Fairylights.

I fully intend to wear this to our office Christmas Party this year. I'll have the best dressed nails there!

Tomorrow, I'll be swatching my Asos Paint Pots. These are AMAZING lacquers that I truly believe will become classics over time. I can't wait to show them to you!

butter LONDON - Perfect Prezzie - Part I

For the second time in this collection, I've had the experience of a colour not looking anything like it does in the bottle. First, it was Fairylights and, now, it's Perfect Prezzie.

In the bottle, this looks like a deep plum with swathes of gold through it. It's gloriously gothic and mysterious, like velvet. I can, seriously, sit and look at this for hours. It's magical.

On the nail, however, the gold just doesn't show through, leaving me with a fairly standard plum.

Now, don't get me wrong, this is a gorgeous colour and it looks fab on the nail. But you know what it's like when you have an image or an expectation of how something will look and, then, when it doesn't live up to those expectations there is that quiet *sigh* of disappointment.

As with all butter LONDON lacquers, the formula is a little tricky (hence my less than perfect application), but the colour is opaque in two coats and is uber shiny on the nail.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

butter LONDON - Fairy Lights - Part II

This was such an easy decision. The moment I saw Fairy Lights on the nail, I had to use Knees Up as my Konad Stamp colour.

And, wow, isn't this a fantastic colour combination.

Even my Konad-ing seems to be less car wrech-ish than normal.

This is just so holiday season-ish. Maybe I have Fiji on the mind - which is where we're celebrating Christmas this year - but the flowers look like little palm trees on my fingers.

Once again, the strength of these butter LONDON lacquers is the way they collaborate with each other. I am in love with this Konad-icure.


Related Posts with Thumbnails