Thursday, August 17, 2017

Summer Melllows

It's the waning days of the truly hot weather here and although the change to mellowing heat and cool nights is heartily welcome, the small town sights of kids biking home from the pool, sunlicked anglers home from sport, and the pervasive scent of barbecue on a Saturday evening are less frequent.

I know that I love this time of year. It is, truly, the best time to try something new. Not too hot to try a bike ride, not too cold to try a hike in the mountains, and sun lingers long enough to enjoy the evenings and you see the baby quail learning the ropes of navigating the neighborhood.

While everyone is rushing into autumn collections, I'm lingering a little more in summer here in the blog.

Maybelline Bamboo Yellow

A very old Dollar Tree find. I think it is my favorite yellow. But I love the pale yellows quite a bit. 

Three-not-so-free stinky, it's the old Express Finish line that was purged long before I got into polish and holds its own, still.

Three coats, no top coat. Vaguely sheer, so next time I might don a nude base to make it a little better for coverage. 

I love the soft frost finish, it's less of a distraction since the polish is light.

I think it might be floating around eBay and that sort of thing, it's long since discontinued.

China Glaze Midnight Kiss

Three coats, no top coat.

Bright yellow gold foil. The first coat is sheer enough to know it won't translate into a stamping polish, but I do admit that on the nail it's my kind of foil: summery, bright, grabs the light, and grabs attention.

This is an oldie I picked up fairly recently, it's from their 2010 holiday collection. China Glaze has been a strong traditionalist with regard to holiday collections. They've done a lot of great ones, and bent some expectations, too. I suggest checking out 8ty8 or Nailsupply for a vast catalogue of holiday shades. Fun browsing time! ;)

Thanks so much for reading my little nail polish journal!

I appreciate it! 

Monday, August 14, 2017

Emily de Molly. Lost...Then Found

I realize that I have over 1000 posts. Wow!

Some years I jammed out content almost every other day, other years I barely seem to get my act together! 

Here's  more evidence of the latter: I found two photos from 2016 that I thought I posted somewhere, but not here. My rule has been to always treat the blog as the one place to post my important content.
I will be honest, social media of all the different stripes feels like a full time job, so I haven't delved into super hard. Tumblr is constantly cross-selling content to me, and I'm not interested. I know: I need to try instagram.

Anyhow. Here are a few old stamping photos I may have posted on social media elsewhere, but I can't find them. (how embarrassing!)

Both of these are stamped from Emily de Molly plate 05. Her site was having a sale on "flawed" plates and I snapped them up. The flaws were so minor that it took a note about each one to even find them. Perfectionists may differ, but it often was on one design on the plate and it was so worth it.

The polishes, however are a mystery. I apologize for that!!

Mystery 1

Pure delight.
One of my favorite books is called The Handbook of Ornament by Franz Meyer. It is packed with design motifs from the ancient world through the Victorian Era.
This stamp reminds me of English Renaissance motifs.

This is a pale gray topped with a green that stamped well, but what were the polishes? A mystery!

Topped it with Sally Hansen Hidden Treasure. Delightful outcome.

Mystery 2

From the same plate. A silver chrome and a feisty cherry red. Beautiful combo!

Emily de Molly is currently carrying plates on both her US and Australian site. Plate 05 is a round plate. Quite delightful!

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Friday, August 11, 2017

Zoya Rica Above and Beyond

Zoya Rica over OPI My Private Ornament.

I don't think I can convey my adoration for this combo! It reminds me of Nicole by OPI Coral Denominator (a backup-worthy, desert island polish).

I like Zoya Rica a lot. I inadvertently bought a second bottle in one of those Zoya sale frenzies. Ah well. No worries. Rica is sheer. It behaves like a topper and I love the heck out of that!!

I first put down  in this order: Rica, MPO, Rica, MPO, Rica; I may not have needed the second coat of MPO, as it's a fairly dense glitter.

I wore this fore several days and it was heavenly. Just perfect.

The play of that warm silver of MPO and the gold fleck and gorgeous juicy reddened coral in Rica just worked beautifully. I love when a layering combination creates a third creature of great beauty. I should start a page that lists these combos.

If you have these two, definitely layer them!

Here's Rica alone, stamped:

Over a nude I used 4 coats to acquire some density. It wasn't hard and I think Zoya's formula was easy to work with: it didn't slop or pool -  without some help from me, that is! :)

Stamped with a plate I forgot to write down! Borghese Mezzanotte Blue was the one I grabbed for a fast stamping job. I actually tried a new thing I read about on Makeup Alley from a poster called Urang: I mixed some shimmer from a 

I know that I added a Chaos and Crocadiles sheer holo topper for a bit of holo fun in the sun.

I won't lie, Rica never gave up on me! I wore it a lot and though it's a sheer one, I love how Zoya pulls the glass fleck out of their hat to come up with these kinds of collections!

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Monday, August 7, 2017


Actually, from Dance Legend's Confetti Collection, a bunch of super saturated metallic pearl shades that are hard to dislike.
Well not much at Dance Legend that is hard to love!! I've got a running cart that is in the low three digits and I really have a hard time paring it down.

Meanhile, Dance Legend 533

Luminous is the first word that pops through my head.

Three coats, no top coat.

Excellent formula, excuse my slapdash application!

Dance Legend has such an extensive line that international stockists don't carry the full array. Their site is fairly easy to navigate and though it takes time, they ship internationally. I haven't pulled the trigger on an order, but I anticipate doing a big one when I do!!

You can find them in the smaller indie shops, blog sales, etc. Worth the hunt!

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Glitter Sponge Learning Curve

I wanted to try sponging a glitter again and sharing the highs, lows, ups, downs, etc.

Sephora by OPI G-listen To Your Heart

Sponged on over black with a triangle cosmetic sponge found at Dollar Tree.

First off: what a delightful shade of purple! I love how fresh and bright.

So, what I learned this round:

  • Protect your fingers - I use latex body paint that I use for stamping, it makes a huge difference. Cleanup was still a chore, but it sure went much better than the last time (A lot of that glitter on my fingers is from the swatches I did the previous glitter post)
  • Let the sponge do it's job - the sponge needs to pick up that extra base so you can add the glitter without building a big soupy mess. Have a tissue handy to squeeze out the nail base between applications of glitter. If your sponge is too saturated, it won't be useful any longer.
  • You don't need a base color - I put down black, but really I didn't need it. It doesn't show up, that's just the black reflection of the light not hitting that glitter.
  • Let coats dry - I jumped the gun on this one. The sponging part went very well, but I tended to not do a lot of waiting and I think it would have helped.
  • Thinner topcoat - this went a little overboard. I should have used a thinner coats so I would be able to really make it work. 
So I am getting closer to making it work better. I don't know that it was a viable manicure because it did get soupy and it did get a thick dose of topcoat. Neither of which are the best to help it dry down through the layers.

Sephora by OPI G-listen To Your Heart has gone the way of the Dodo. I would check eBay or Amazon. I found mine at Big Lots! for $1.99 and I am glad I grabbed it! In its heyday Sephora by OPI was about $12 a bottle. It was prohibitive while I could snap up Color Club in 7-packs and OPI for $4.50.
Then it was starting to discontinue, so it went down to $4-5 a bottle through Sephora and then it was just gone. OPI got out of the relabeling business with Sephora (who knows who they work with now, super secret spy stuff I guess!).  Sephora has their X brand, but it's truly not affordable for so little information one has about it, and they transition collections with the season (and these days with fast fashion, there are virtually dozens and dozens of seasons) so I don't really keep track of it.

I haven't been in a Ross for over 4-5 months and I used to see the joblotted stuff there.

Now you know! ;D

Thank you for reading my little nail polish journal!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Deborah Lippman's Razzle Dazzle Versus Zoya Roxy

Here's a shoot-out I didn't expect, but when I pulled them from the drawer, well, it was an easy match-up!

Deborah Lippman Razzle Dazzle

This is over a generic black polish (A Milani striping polish that needed two coats).

Left to right:
Two coats
One coat
Two coats
One coat

I love this polish, it is dense, the glitter is a good size and density.

I do have a top coat over this, but it probably needed another.

I bought this at a blog sale and it was all leaking and had a blob of dried polish at its neck. I had to clear that off and thin it out. 

Zoya Roxy

Over black and top coated.

Left to right:
One coat
Two coats
One coat
Two coats

Zoya itself was very glossy, and though the density is somewhat lower when it comes to glitter, it really smoothed out after one coat of top coat.

In truth before I started writing this post I was full on going to purge the Zoya, but I think I want to keep it around. Both are beautiful.

Razzle Dazzle seems to be discontinued and is on eBay and Amazon. At this writing it runs about 19.99.
Roxy is still available on Zoya's site. It's at $10, but also be aware Zoya has deals almost monthly these days, so it's quite easy to buy at an affordable price point.

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Four Purples You Need To Know About

Here's a swatchfest of purples that I've worn, but haven't posted before. They are in much need of an outing.


Kiko 278

Three coats. Simply gorgeous!!!
I think I picked this up through a blog sale. These days it's a blur: eBay, blog sales, facebook, etc.
It doesn't appear to be on the Kiko site any longer.

Meanwhile, this is a great formula and a lovely glassy finish (no top coat!) This is a stellar polish.
Despite my attempt to splash it around my nail, it seems to defy my best efforts and I only jammed up one nail. Win!

If you find it, grab it!

Brucci Grape Galaxy

A deep vamp loaded with silver glass fleck it is a classic three coater and a decent formula.

I don't really see much Brucci except randomly online. Their website is a bit of a conundrum with a South African Rand system after the home page professes "Made in the US". Maybe it just means they can't quite make it in the US, so they sell abroad.

Meanwhile a pretty polish, though very dark. The glass fleck brings it out of just being this side of a black polish.

I feel like Brucci might be more available on the east coast of the US. Out here in the west, it's just nowhere to be seen.
Except eBay, Amazon, etc.

Barielle Grape Escape

I purchased this awhile ago and saw that I didn't blog it, sheesh!

Three coats, gorgeous purple and such an amazing shade that I didn't quite capture (my photo is a bit blue).

I didn't do clean up, but you can see it help up against my fling-y approach to application of late!

Barielle is a brand that should have the kind of brand status OPI does: better formula, better overall. Yet, OPI has such a hold and releases relentlessly boring collections season after season.

Hey, I put my money where my mouth is: no one sends me any freebies, so OPI will hear me speak truth to power.

Barielle: buy it.

Gosh Wild Lilac

Truly a gem. I think I bought it through a blog sale, but I may have picked it up on eBay. Eep.

Meanwhile three coats, could have been two. Delightful! Not top coat, lots of gloss!

I seem to manage to splash over on one or two nails and just can't be bothered with clean up these days. The upside is that this formula holds together pretty well.

I wish Gosh was more accessible! I feel like Australian, Korean, and European brands outshine a lot of US ones.

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Monday, July 24, 2017

The New Thing

Well, new to me.

In the world of indies there is the social media aspect that is a vital component of marketing. It is common for businesses to capitalize on this in ways that can make, and in some cases break, them. I will spare you the discursive ramble, suffice to say: if you are in the business with making money with an endeavor, you need your buns on a load of social media platforms. (and that includes blogging)

Right now there are dozens of nail polish groups for brands themselves, but also fans of brands and indies in general. Many times indies will customize items for their group or collaborate with others to sell to a general fan group. There is one group - of what quickly turned into many - I follow called "Holo-maniacs" and as you can guess, their wheelhouse is holo polishes (and the odd holo items that is just cool).

You need to ask to join these groups, but if you are a Facebook user, it's not hard and you can access destashes and special collaborations as well as custom items for the groups (plus give aways)

At first I was cynical, I didn't really used Facebook, and I felt like I was getting pooped on as a consumer because I had to have special access to buy things that I saw swatches of but didn't have access to buy. Super bummer. 

Then I put myself in the maker's shoes: who wouldn't want a bunch of enthusiasts guaranteed to buy  your polish, bring brand awareness, loyalty and support, by offering special things?
It only makes sense. I was in. I got it. And I've gotten a lot of polishes! Ha!

KBShimmer recently created a special polish called Holo Can You Go for Holo-maniacs.

No link on their site, not searchable, either, and nothing came up on google. You need to join the group and then you have access.

Is it worth it?

I think so! This royal blurple holo monster is a top ten polish! 

I grabbed this photo after a few days wear. I couldn't take it off!!!

Two coats, top coat is a combo of a CND Vinyluxe, Milani, and Seche Vive cocktail of leftovers I put into one bottle. 

So far, I have to say the group thing has been a lot of fun: I have found some items that I never even thought I'd ever get and I also enjoy having access to some of the exclusive items that I love.

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

From the Lost Files

I had done a few swatches back in March 2017 and in an organizational fury, I put them in a folder, which I promptly ignored in plain sight.

Here are these timely summery mints.

BB Couture Kyona Beach

BB Couture came out with a few charity exclusives after the Haitian hurricane disaster in 2010.

A lovely crushed turquoise, I think this brand is wholly underappreciated.

Excellent formula, wear, and decent dry time. Love it.

They have an excellent selection and they keep a wide array of stock, so you're not driven by "limited edition-itis".

Recommend you check out their site. 

Milani Mint Crush

This turned me into lobster hands and I really had to tweak this photo. 

Two coats, but not a fun polish to work with. Thick, goopy, unwieldy.

It might have been improved with thinning.

Recommend, not any more.

Here's it doing the cat's nine lives as a stamping polish:

Saved! Over a taupe whose name I forgot to write down it does an excellent job.

Talk about slacker, I forgot the plate info, too.

*hangs head in shame*

Meanwhile, buzz on over to BB Couture: their stuff is always very well done.
(not affiliated, I buy my own polish) :D

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Dance Legend Chimera

I think I've posted some Dance Legend before. I will be honest: It's a brand that I adore.

I need to buy some more, it's just that getting what I want entails a huge international order or random indie sellers who import the brand.

Meanwhile, here is a great polish that is still available:

This is a metallic blue shimmer with pops of micro shimmer. Though in most lights this just doesn't show up, it's a normal metallic.

This is a three coater, first coat is very thin, but surprisingly by the third coat it's just find. Not going to transition into a stamping polish, but is a gorgeous stand alone beauty.

A true blurple it hails from the Dance Legend Mystery collection. Lots of shifty flakes and some shifty metallics.

This is a favorite of mine: easy formula, and while needing three coats, this is a no fuss formula. If you can't stand brushstrokes this might be an issue, but in truth, they settle for the most part. 

I am very biased: I love the color, I find the formula super easy to work with, and I love how the hidden sparkle comes out in the sunshine.

Thanks for reading my little nail polish journal!