Friday, April 30, 2010

China Glaze Atlantis (Part Deux)

           Today, I'm in a good mood, because it's Friday. And also cuz I'm wearing my favorite China Glaze polish! Or at least my favorite one that I own. There are some running around in the world that I love more. And yeah, I have a post on this already, but the pictures are crappy in that one. Also, my nails are longer now, so I think it looks better. Anyway, this. is. ATLANTIS!!! *say it Leonidas style*  

Atlantis is made of mid-size, holographic hex glitter suspended in a teal green jelly base. 

Sunlight, no flash.

Sunlight, no flash.

Natural light, no flash.

Indoors, flash.

Sunlight, no flash. And I blurred it to show some of the sparkliness.

     As usual, my camera is not so secretly obsessed with blue. This is a smidge more green than it looks here, but I didn't think the difference was so much that I had to manipulate the images. And also as usual, my camera is lazeh, because the pictures don't convey the gorgeousness of Atlantis. It's effin beautiful. Gems at the bottom of a Mediterranean sea and all that.
   These pictures are four coats (which is a little much, but it's totally worth the work) and two layers of Poshe for maximum smoothness and sparkle. I have to go to work now (last day, woot!) so I don't have time to matte-ify this. I'll try to do it when I get off. 

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Borghese Stellare Notte

           Today, I'm wearing Borghese Stellare Notte. I was going to try to wear my polishes from the Rock Star Collection consecutively, but I'm just going to put them aside and swatch them come summer break. Which is soon! But anyway, I was looking through my spreadsheet and I noticed that I only had one more Borghese to try before I was done with that brand. So I slapped it on.

Stellare Notte is a shimmery charcoal black duochrome. The shimmer flashes from pink to teal. This picture shows more of the pink. And it was taken indoors..the ones I took in the sunlight came out plain black. But more on that later.

Sunlight, no flash.

Shaded natural light, no flash. This shows a little bit of the teal.

Natural light, no flash.

Indoors, flash. This shows more of the teal.

This is what made me pick up this foolish polish in the first place. 

    Why do I call this polish foolish? Because it is! 
    Stellare Notte looks great in the bottle, but on the nail, it's not even trying to do much of anything. Granted, my pictures of this aren't very good, nor do they adequately convey what this polish does, but even in real life, it's just not very impressive. And I'm not sure why. I like the base color, and the color change on the shimmer is noticeable. When I lift my hand up at the wrist, I get teal. And when I lay it back down, I get pink. But I don't know....I'm just not very impressed by this. And for eight dollars, that's a shame. Scherer Blue Sky, Brucci Black Emerald, and Savina Black Pearl ($2.99, $2.79, and $2.50, respectively) all blow Stellare Notte out of zee waterz. I'm kind of bummed too, because this is a great day to take pictures...the sun is shining and there's not a cloud in the sky. I feel like I wasted it on this polish. smh!
  On the upside, the formula for Stellare Notte was good. It applied smoothly and easily, and dried in good time. These pictures are all three thin coats with one layer of Poshe on top. 

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

LA Girl Rock Star Addict

           After seven days of blue and green, I wanted to wear something that was not related remotely to any of those colors. So I rolled on over to the opposite end of the color wheel and selected Addict, from LA Girl's Rock Star Collection.

Addict is a deep wine-colored jelly base with a ton of gold, multi-sized shimmer. This picture was taken during a rare snatch of sunlight.

Natural light, no flash.

Natural light, no flash.

Shaded natural light, no flash.

Indoors, no flash.

      Addict is fantastic. And I don't normally say that about reds, because I don't really like them. But this one, I like. The size of the shimmer varies from specks to flakes, and some of them are submerged in the jelly, so they look more red than gold. And the base is gorgeous...jelly, vampy goodness. I probably won't be wearing Addict this summer, but I'll probably wear it out and about during fall. It's a perfect shade for that season.
   The formula was problem free. No drag, no streaking, no nothing. Just flowed on like buttah. The pictures feature four coats, with one coat of Poshe, but it was fine in three coats. I put on four because I felt like it. 
 Although I have four Rock Stars besides this one, I still need two more: Groupie and Punk. 
 And I have to take out time to put up my other Rock Stars. Maybe I'll have Rock Star week next. I'd prefer to swatch them, because I've worn them all already, but I don't have time for swatches with packing and finals and everything going on at the moment. 

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Stash Pictures + Konad!

           In order to procrastinate on my homework, I decided to take some pictures of my stash! It's a baby one, compared to some people's, but I am a college student...I ain't big ballin like that. Besides, I love my baby's like my little family. And I think it'd be fun to look back on these years down the road, when I'm fifty years old, with a bunch of cats and nail polish. Also, I have a couple of konad pictures too. So stash first, then konads.
Also, wtf man....why did blogger change their picture thingy? At least you can add more than one picture at a time now.

These are all my untried nail polishes. A few of these, I've actually worn already, but I don't like the pictures of them that I have, so I need to take them again.

These are the ones that I've worn and photographed to my satisfaction. I'm going to get a real basket for these someday. The Borghese Hydrati treatment, Seche Ridge Filing Base and Orly Bonder snuck into the picture though.

Here is where I keep my black and white nail polishes. Not many here. 

Here are all my topcoats and basecoats.

And here are some untrieds that I couldn't fit into my basket, along with my matte top coats. 

     At some point in the future, I'd like to find some real storage for these. Like a cabinet or rack. The baskets are okay, but I'm quickly running out of space, especially as I make a dent in my untried polishes.

And now for Konad pictures.

This is actually from my fauxnad hello kitty plate. The base is Brucci Chris's Green Belt, and the pattern is stamped on with Wet n Wild Sterling Silver. The rhinestone decal in the center came from Rite Aid. And the lighting is weird because it was dark, so I used my bootleg studio lighting. I made it by taking an old lamp and covering the opening with a T-shirt and some tissue paper. It would have worked, but the lamp makes yellow light, instead of white. So that was that. But interestingly, the yellow light gave me a more accurate picture of Chris's Green Belt. I didn't manipulate this image at all; the color is how the camera captured it. 

This was made with Konad plate M66. I used the butterfly and flower patterns. Sorry for the lack of diagram. But anyway, the base is Scherer Blue Sky and the pattern is stamped with Sally Hansen White On. This is in natural light, no flash.

And a closer look. I don't like this one though..maybe I should have done it in black. And the pattern is a little effed up. But that's okay.

    And that's all the rambling randomosity I have for today. *drags self off to do homework*

Earth Week Day 7: Scherer Chameleon Blue Sky

           LOL, this has been the longest week in history, but it's finally drawing to a close. Today, I'm wearing Blue Sky from Scherer Cosmetics' Chameleon line. I thought this one would be fitting because with some environmental stewardship, we can have blue skies all the time, instead of brown or yellow or black.

Blue Sky is a strong, frosty/metallic (honestly, I can't really tell the difference sometimes) duochrome. Its base color is a mid-range blue, and it shows lots of violet, green, and silver.

Sunlight, no flash.

Sunlight, no flash.

Natural light, no flash.

Indoors, no flash.

Sunlight, no flash.

Natural light, no flash.

       Blue Sky is fabulous. My pictures don't really capture how nice this one is. Most of the time, my nails are violet, with green and blue hovering at the corners. But with a tilt of my hand, the whole nail goes green, or the violet is reduced to a sliver, with the nail showing primarily blue. Or the violet ends up at the edges, and the nail is mostly green. As you can imagine, this makes it terribly entertaining to watch my fingers type. And I don't know what it is about this polish, but damn makes my nails look good! They look all long and sexy! 
    But every rose has its thorn, and Blue Sky is no exception to the rule. The application of this was tough, because of the awful cuticle drag. The only way to avoid it was to really load up the brush and to never try to go back and correct brushstrokes. It sucked. And I got some bubbles when it dried. However, the color is nicely pigmented. It would have been a two-coater, if I didn't have to apply another one to even out brushtrokes and dragged places. Also, dry time was great. I slapped on Poshe and ten minutes later, I was in bed. In the morning, my polish was pristine, except for the bubbles, so yay! 
   And even though the application was hellish, I'm still wearing this one again and I'm going to recommend it to people too. A duochrome of this strength for only $2.99 is nothing to trifled with. The Chameleon line are all duochromes and can be found exclusively in Rite Aids, although other polishes by this company can be found in Walmart too. 

  And the tip for today is simple, but may take some discipline: don't buy cosmetics from companies that test on animals. Admittedly, this doesn't really have anything to do with saving Earth as a whole. But animals are an important part of the world, and we have to look out for them. And covering them with potentially harmful chemicals is not looking out for them. I won't be buying any cosmetics that have been tested on animals, no matter how great the lemming. I also plan on going through my collection and purging any polishes that have been tested on animals, and I hope others will join me. If you find six or more, maybe you can do the Zoya Polish Swap thing. And if not, then maybe you can donate them to a women's shelter. Or return them to the store if you still have the receipt. I can understand why medication is tested on animals, because medication can save lives. But eyeshadow is just not that serious. 
This post on Nevertoomuchglitter features a great list of companies that are and are not cruelty-free. The list isn't exhaustive, but it's a great reference point. And FYI, CQ and Scherer Cosmetics (the makers of Blue Sky) are cruelty-free. I made sure to write in and ask. ^_^

And with that, Earth Week is officially OVAH!!  And I can finally wear some other colors...I'm embarrassed to say that I've been craving red. 


There's a really great giveaway happening at Lily Nail's blog! One person can win all of this:

All you have to do is be a follower and leave a comment, but I'm blogging about it just in case anyone hasn't seen it yet. The contest ends tomorrow at midnight, so there's not much time. Hurry!!

And there's another really nice one on Lacquered Literati!
It's full of beautiful shades for the summertime. There are lots of opportunities to win, and it ends on May 3rd.

 I'll be adding periodically to this post as I run across new giveaways.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Earth Week Day 6: Brucci Chris's Green Belt

            Whoo coming down the home stretch here. Today, I'm wearing Brucci Chris's Green Belt. This was another one that my camera was not too friendly with, so these pictures are again manipulated to fit what I see on my nails. I think I need a new camera too...this one is heaving its last, dying breaths. 

Chris's Green Belt is a vibrant, rich shade of green with green shimmer. The color itself is hard to describe. It's basically emerald green but with a bit of blue.

Natural light, no flash. It was another overcast day. 

Natural light, no flash.

And for comparison purposes, here's the unretouched version.

     This is a beautiful green. I had doubts about showing it for Earth Week, because I've already shown two Bruccis, but when I saw this on the nail, my doubts disappeared. It's such a lush pretty green. And the little dose of blue keeps the color from being just another emerald green shimmer. 
   The formula was okay too. Dry time was fine, and application wasn't hard. It slid right on, and was perfectly opaque in two coats. I did three here because I was bored, though. However, I  have realized that I hate the Brucci's so damn skinny. The skinniness is good, because it means less clean up. But it's bad because it takes longer to cover each nail.

The tip for today is: Shut off the water when you aren't using it! What I mean is, when you're brushing your teeth, turn off the water while you scrub. When in the shower, turn off the water while you lather. Before going to bed or leaving home, quickly check the faucets for dripping water. And don't use the water at the highest possible pressure when you don't need to. Doing these simple things saves a tremendous amount of water from being wasted, which is important, because contrary to popular belief, water is NOT a renewable resource. If we don't use it wisely, eventually, there is not going to be enough water to go around. When this happens, life will suck butt. And animals all over the world will die. "Save some water for the fishes" is not completely a joke. Plus, nobody wants to use baby wipes to bathe themselves, sooo....let's shut off the water as often as possible, mkay?

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Earth Week Day 5: OPI Absolutely Alice

            Mkay, after a brief interlude, Earth Week is back on track! The blue that I'm wearing today is one that everyone and their momma has seen, OPI's Absolutely Alice, from the slightly disappointing Alice in Wonderland Collection. 

Absolutely Alice is a clear base packed with mid-range blue glitter and speckled with gold glitter. 

Natural light, no flash. There's no sun today, unfortunately. 

Natural light, no flash.

Natural light, gentle flash to simulate sunlight.

I wanted to see what it would look like matte, so I applied one coat of Essie Matte About You.
Natural light, no flash.

And then, I was still bored and procrastinating, so I applied one coat of Nfu-Oh 52. The pictures aren't really showing how this's so so beautiful. I'm definitely wearing this again.
Natural light, no flash. 

Natural light, gentle flash to simulate sunlight.

       My feelings about this polish can be summed up in one sentiment: if I were ever to meet Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, I would not know whether to give her a hug or to give her stank eye. Why?
     Because Absolutely Alice is gorgeous. It's so damn sparkly that when I wear it and walk in the sun, my eyes are constantly on my nails. I have crashed into strangers on the street because I was too busy being mesmerized by this polish to look where I'm going. True story. And, it's a really fantastic interpretation of the character of Alice...the gold bits were a great touch. Additionally, the formula goes on easily and gives great coverage, especially for a glitter in a clear base. These pictures are all with three thin coats. So yes...Absolutely Alice is absolutely gorgeous. It's better than Dorothy Who?. And if it were not one stupid flaw, it'd be perfect.
     Absolutely Alice does not get along with quick drying topcoats. I tested it with all the quick drying TCs I have, and AA just peeled off within a few hours of drying. That's good, if you only want to wear it for one day. But bad if you want to get some real wear out of it. I don't know how such a thing could be overlooked, because OPI has produced glitters in the past. Shame, shame, shame.

The tip for today is: don't wear fur or ivory! When most people think of Earth, they mostly think of the actual physical Earth, but don't remember the animals. But in fact, the health of the planet depends on healthy ecosystems, because animals are one way that nature moves materials and nutrients to places where they are needed. Healthy ecosystems in turn, depend on biodiversity, because every species (from the plankton to the shark) has a role to play. And when even one actor is removed from the stage, it's fully possible for the whole production to go to shit. Excuse my language. So when hunters are going into the wilderness and killing off elephants for ivory or snow leopards for their pelts, the ecosystems of these animals are being destroyed as well. Which does not bode well for the Earth. Plus, do you really want to tell your grandkids, "Hey, back in my day, we had these big grey animals called elephants?" or do you want them asking you if you've ever seen a cheetah? No...nobody wants that. So if you love the look of animal fur or ivory, consider buying faux. Especially with the innovativeness of the modern textile industry, I'm sure most people won't even know the difference.