Wednesday, 2 December 2020

Candy Cane Lane

Hello all and happy December! I can't believe we're here already, this year is going weirdly fast! What I also can't believe is that I haven't started the Christmas nail art early this year, we even put the tree up on Sunday, I guess I just had so many other things I wanted to try in November. I'm back to doing the Glam Nails Challenge again for this month, I honestly never anticipated I'd enjoy it this much and even end up doing it for December! As always I have a huge list of Christmas nail art ideas which I won't be able to complete, but some of these tie in well with the glam nails challenge themes so I'm going to give it a go.

For this look I started with a base of Misery by ILNP, which seems like such a bizarre choice for a Christmas look given the name! I think it has a nice cosy vibe to it though and I wanted to try it out as it's a new one. I used the advanced stamping technique to create a variety of decals on my Uber Mat (see how here). The cottages and snowman are from Mo You London's Noel 01 stamping plate, and the reindeer and candy cane's are from Noel 09 - one of this years releases. I layered up the candy canes over the cottages and reindeer, after being inspired by a couple of houses I saw in the local area with their Christmas lights up. There seems to be a bit of a candy cane theme this year, and one of the houses was a beautiful cottage too.

I'm pleased with how these turned out. Not my favourite Christmas nail art I've ever done but I do rather like it! I called this look 'Candy Cane Lane' after the song by Sia which gets in my head frequently while wearing this nail art!

Colours used: Misery - ILNP, White Stamping Polish - Rainbow Connection, Black Stamping Polish - Dance Legend, Spring Green - Barry M, Red Hot Rio - OPI, Indigo - Barry M, Cappuccino - Barry M, White Moonstone - Barry M

Sunday, 29 November 2020

Cirque Colors No Tools Nail Art - Amethyst & Shibori

Hey everyone! One last blog post before the Christmas nail art begins! Last weekend I decided to have a play around with my Cirque Colors no tools nail art sets for the first time. This is the second time Cirque have released nail art sets consisting of sheer polishes which can be layered to create an overall look. I was tempted the first time but didn't go for it, this time though they had blue and purple options so I had to give it a try! Each set consists of three sheer polishes, I followed Kelli Marissa's tutorials for my first attempt.

Overall I don't think mine came out great, but they're OK and it was my first try! The first three pictures are of the Amethyst set. I layered this up in various ways to try and get the overall effect of Amethyst stones. I think some came out better than others, but I was a little too neat around the edges and probably didn't blend them well enough. I will try it again and try to improve and I also like the idea of using some thin lines of rose gold to the look too.

The next three pictures are of the Shibori set. To be honest I've never heard of Shibori! I think this look came out a little better but could have still been a better! I did miss a few little bits at the sides which made it look a bit like they were chipped, I think I can improve on this one quite easily though. Underneath these looks I tried out a new base coat which I was delighted to win as part of a Halloween nail art competition on the Rainbow Connection Facebook group! I've included my thoughts on it and a picture below the nail art pictures.


On the left here is the Polished For Days Soft Focus base coat I used underneath this look. It's designed to blur the natural colour of the nail so the white tips are less obvious underneath nail polish, so it's particularly good for sheer looks like this. I used two coats before applying the colours, you can see this on the left.

The application was good and it definitely covered up the white part of my nail once the sheer colours were added too. I think it did possibly make the look a little darker but I can't be sure as I haven't tried it with any other base coat!

Tuesday, 24 November 2020

West of Scotland Holiday Tribute Nails

Hello nail people! Today I'm excited to show you some holiday tribute nail art from our trip to the West Coast of Scotland earlier this year. I love to do nail art themed after lovely holidays after we've got back to continue the magic! Our Scotland trip was in August so it has taken me a while to get round to this one! While I was there some new Picture Polish nail polishes came out and I was very tempted to buy them so when I finally decided on these shades after we got back I thought they'd be super appropriate for this nail art. I decided to do a different colour theme for each hand to represent the land and sea parts of the trip.

On my left hand I wanted to capture the views when we walked from the house we stayed in. There were some pretty stunning views from the windows too! We could see a loch, hills and trees, and walking down the road there was a bit where the loch opened out and there were stunning views with the Isle of Bute in the distance, and a few people out on sailing boats enjoying the gorgeous scenery. On my thumb nail I layered up trees from the Mo You London Noel 06 stamping plate. On my middle two nails I used the advanced stamping technique to add the sailing boat and mountain scenes using their Sailor 18 and 01 plates. The block colour nails are in Evergreen from Picture Polish, I've listed all the colours at the bottom of the whole blog post. Unfortunately whatever I tried I couldn't capture the true green shade of this one, it kept coming out teal, but it's more of a forest green in real life!

On my right hand I captured the more watery elements of our trip! Every beach we went to we saw jellyfish washed up! They varied in size and were certainly not blue and sparkly as I've depicted here! They were brown or reddish brown. We also saw seals! We went to a beach where we knew we could walk to a viewing point, but then one popped up when we were swimming, it was amazing! They are such lovely creatures. On this hand I used Maldives from Picture Polish on my index and little finger nails. On my ring finger I used a water image from Mo You London's Sailor 18 plate. For the other two I used the advanced stamping plate with Animal 04 on my middle finger and Bundle Monsters 504 plate on my thumb nail.
Colours used - left hand: Evergreen - Picture Polish, Floral Street - Nails Inc, Black Stamping Polish - Rainbow Connection, Maldives - Picture Polish, Tickled Taupe - Painted Polish, Taupe Temptation - Picture Polish, Key Lime - Barry M, Spring Green - Barry M
Colours used - right hand: Maldives - Picture Polish, Floral Street - Nails Inc, Black Stamping Polish - Rainbow Connection, Indigo - Barry M, Grey - Barry M

Wednesday, 18 November 2020

Quixotic Polish - Trying Another Lovely Indie Brand

Hello all! Got some plan old swatches today rather than nail art, but I'm excited to share these with you as I rather like them (spoiler alert!). Earlier this year I decided to buy a few polishes from Quixotic Polish for the first time, but didn't try them for ages as they are more the sort of thing I'd wear in the autumn/winter. These two are from their Flakie Bombs collection which is soooo incredibly beautiful! I resisted the other shades but that was tough! They had a picture of them all together which looked so pretty I wanted to frame it! Still tempted to go back for the rest...

ANYway, onto the polishes... first up is Nightshade, a deep green jelly polish with green flakes and specs of glitter. This polish is SO beautiful! It's got so much depth to it. I thought it might just be quite dark and come out a bit more black but I'm so pleased with how green it is. A very strong start! 

Next up is Ambrosia, a beautiful teal-blue-green, I'm not really sure what you'd call this to be honest but it's lovely! It looks different colours in different lights, my favourite is when that purple-y red flare shows up as you can see in the picture of my thumb nail. Looking at the pictures again it's hard to choose a favourite but this one really did wow me when it caught the light!

Sunday, 15 November 2020

Stamping Sunday: Hygge Nails

Hello and happy Sunday! Todays nail art is the last from my birthday nail art poll on Instagram (came joint third with the liquid crystal look from my last post). The theme is hygge, which is what I'd wanted to theme my 30th birthday celebrations around if I could have had a party. According to Google Hygge is a Danish and Norwegian word for a mood of comfort and coziness with feelings of wellbeing and contentment. I'm sure you can see the appeal but it helps that I really love visiting Norway too (such a shame we won't be able to go this year!). Mo You London brought out a hygge themed plate as part of the autumn collection this year (Fall In Love 08) so there will definitely be more of this theme from me!

I started with a base of pale blue (colours listed below the pictures) and then created decals using my Uber Mat for the middle finger, index finger and thumbnails, you can see how here. On my middle and little fingers I used white stamping polish to apply the cosy jumper and speckled images (the speckles don't show up that well but they're on my middle finger - looking forward to trying some other colour variations for that one!). I then added some wording over the top, unfortunately I smudged the words on my middle finger a bit with my matte top coat, it's not a great one! 

Overall I quite like these, I like the cosy vibe (see the picture with my dressing gown!) and the theme, I do think I could do better hygge nails though, they need a bit of glitter to bring me true feelings of contentment! :D I also think the mushrooms on my thumb could have been better, the two colours I used look too similar to each other.

Colours used: Borrowed & Blue - Essie, White Stamping Polish - Rainbow Connection, Indigo - Barry M, Soft Focus - ILNP, Oyster - Barry M, Seven Dials - Nails Inc

Saturday, 14 November 2020

A Liquid Crystal Galaxy!

 Hey everyone! Got some more first time nail experiences to share with you today! This was another of  the options on my birthday poll and I've been keen to try it out for some time! I'm not used to using gel polish either so it's a bit of an experimental one for me!

I started with a peel off base coat as I don't fancy soaking off the gel - so we'll see how long these last! I then applied 2-3 coats of gel polish to my nails. It is a little lumpy but I'm definitely getting better at it! I rarely work with gel and have often found I've ended up doing it too thick. After my final layer of black gel I used silver foil effect polish from Barry M and an image from my Kelli Marissa and Bundle Monster  (now Maniology) collaboration stamping plate to apply the star image. I was really pleased with how well it came out, I liked it even before the liquid crystal!

The next step was to apply the liquid crystal. Mine is a little bottle from Dance Legend, and I used the brush to gently swipe some of the liquid over my nails in wavy lines. It was quite runny and took a while to dry so took some getting used to, but once it dried I got the lovely multi-coloured effect you can see below. It;s quite hard to capture and doesn't always show up but when it does I love the way the colours change just like the mood rings I used to have as a child! I finished the look with a gel top coat to seal it in and am still enjoying wearing them!

Friday, 13 November 2020

Glitterfest 2020!

Hi everyone, I hope you're feeling sparkly today! This look is the next up from my birthday poll on Instagram, the suggestion was 'glitterfest' and it came second. Absolutely ages ago I bought some glitter pots from Divine by Natasha Lee, after watching some of her videos on how to use them on YoutTube. I honestly can't believe its taken me this long to try them, but here we are! I chose four out of my seven colours as I thought these went well together and the others might look a bit Christmassy. 

I started with a coloured base on each nail as instructed in the video (colours listed below the pictures). In the videos Natasha shows you various ways of doing glitter nails, with gel or regular nail polish. I chose to use regular polish as that's what I prefer to work with, and started off with one look, but then changed it to another by adding a top coat as the texture was bothering me! After two layers of nail polish I added a coat of clear polish, and used a flat brush to spoon glitter onto my nails. I have some little triangular trays I bought with the glitters, to catch the glitter that falls off and tip it back into the pot, this is really useful but glitter does still get everywhere! I then used a fan brush to brush off the excess glitter and ta da! Very Sparkly nails!

In the pictures below you can see some before and some after the top coats. I love the textured look before the top coats and how sparkly it looks, however it did start to annoy me as I'd feel it touch things and feel like it was rubbing the glitter off, so I did decide to add a couple of layers of 'glitter grabber' polish and a top coat. As it turned out I liked that look just as much anyway! Overall I see these as a success, the middle and little fingers are definitely the neatest and I like the colour on my middle finger the best.

Colours used: Casablanca - Jessica, Prima Donna - Jessica, Mermaid Tail - Barry M, Copa Girls (faded) - Cupcake Polish
Glitters used: Iris, Siren, Bora Bora, Northern Lights - all from Divine by Natasha Lee