nail polish

Busy Girl Nails Fall Nail Art Challenge: Oxblood

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I missed out on the first two weeks of this challenge, but I had to jump in for week three since it’s my favorite fall polish color: oxblood! 

I used two coats of Julep Lucy. My one gripe about the older Julep polishes is that they are runny, so you have to work carefully to avoid streaks and extra cleanup at the end. Otherwise I love this color. It’s pretty dark on the nails but not so much that it looks black.

Nail polish of the month! September 2013

I can’t even do this polish justice with my photos, but here’s an attempt anyway! Zoya Carter is part of the newest wave of PixieDust polishes, textured matte glitters that look unlike anything else I’ve ever seen–they really do come across as sugary frosting for the nails. It’s so pretty, I don’t even mind that it’s purple! (Not usually my favorite color!)

Here is Carter in daylight (overcast skies), no topcoat. The top picture is a little blurry but I think it shows the depth of the purple more. This polish is loaded with pink glitters that give it a very warm, rich finish.

You’ll need two coats for an even swatch, and make sure you use smooth, even, quick strokes–like all mattes, this stuff sets up quickly. (It doesn’t necessarily dry as quickly as a standard matte, though, so don’t rush your mani–give it proper time to dry.) I didn’t find that it was difficult to work with, though, unlike some other mattes that I’ve tried in the past!

Zoya lacquers are vegan and five-free (no nasty chemicals!) and retail for $9 apiece through beauty stores like Ulta or at Zoya.com.

[CLOSED] GIVEAWAY: Wet n Wild Tough Girl eye shadow and nail polish collection

It’s hard to believe, but it’s true–we’re halfway through September already! Who authorized the days to fly by so quickly?! Not me, that’s for sure! LOL.

Well, since it’s a new month…I have a new giveaway for you guys! I was lucky enough to scoop up the full Wet n Wild Tough Girl limited edition eye shadow and nail polish collection. There are six shadow trios and six textured (yes, textured!) polishes in this collection. Scroll down for close-up shots of each.

Entry is simple: just leave a comment telling me which of these shadow.polish combos you’re loving the most! You can earn extra entries by following me and sharing the giveaway on social media, but please remember that if you do not complete the mandatory comment entry your extra entries will be invalid. Because of shipping restrictions on nail polish this giveaway is open to residents of the continental United States and Canada only. The giveaway will close at 11:59 PM PST on September 25th. Please read through the full giveaway rules (click “terms and conditions” on the bottom of the Rafflecopter widget) before entering! And good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Okay, on to the closeup shots of these lovely items. Each of the six shadow trios coordinates to one of the polishes. First we have a trio of rose and peach shades called Spoiled Army Brat, with a rose cream polish called Fatigue Glam.
Support Our Troops is a trio of black, grey and white shades and is paired with a grey cream polish called Tough Girl.

I Don’t Do Camouflage is a trio of blues with a bright cobalt blue cream polish called Left, Left, Left, Right, Left.

Soldiers in Charms, a trio of olives and greens, is easily my favorite of the bunch. Atten-Hut! is a shimmery olive polish.

Zero Dark Flirty (great naming, that) is a trio of rich purples paired with a slightly shimmery purple polish called Beauty Is A Battlefield.

Finally we have a trio of khakis and browns called Enlisting For Beauty, which actually comes with a bonus MegaProtein mascara (the mascara is not vegan, FYI). The shimmery champagne polish is called Femme Trouper.

Prize mail: Dollish Polish!

Hey everybody! I took this pic last week and completely zonked on posting it. I won a bottle of Dollish Polish in a giveaway from The Polish Hideout and it’s so lovely, I had to share a swatch! The shade is Expecto Patronum (yup, Harry Potter reference there) and it’s a lovely white jelly full of teal hex glitter.

This polish applies really smoothly, dries quickly, and was opaque in three coats. There’s tons of glitter in the polish, so it isn’t hard at all to get an even coating on the nails. It’s just such an interesting color! I really don’t think the photo does it justice.

Yun has much better swatches here if you want to see them :P and while you’re there I recommend following her blog–I think she has some of the best polish swatches in the blogosphere! Thanks again Yun for the prize, I love it!

Nail Polish of the Month: August 2013

Wow, this summer has flown by! I’ve really been neglecting my monthly polish picks and I completely forgot to post a swatch of this color when I received it in my June Julep Maven box. Payton is a beautiful bright Kelly green creme with a super-shiny finish; it almost makes me think of a jelly polish because of the finish, but it’s opaque in two coats. Adding a third coat will make the color a little darker.

Julep Payton retails for $14 ($11.20 for Mavens) through Julep.com. It is vegan and free of formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene and DBP.

Julep Maven June ’13 box

I’ve been skipping my Julep Maven boxes all spring, but when I saw this month’s selections I knew it was time to splurge. Why? Because one of the polishes included is named Martha…and it’s a pale pink (my fave)…and June is my birthday month! Happy birthday to me! I also thought a Maven box would be a good way to treat myself for hitting the end of my spending ban without buying any makeup. (Although, I have to admit–it wasn’t nearly as hard as I thought it would be, after the first week or two was past!)

This month’s theme was “Sail Into Summer”, with a palette of Nantucket-inspired seaside colors. It was hard to pick just one polish set, because all of the colors were so gorgeous! But I finally settled on Classic With A Twist, which included Martha (a pale pink polo creme) and Kennedy (a khaki creme). As an add-on I picked Payton, a kelly green creme from the “Bombshell” box.

This was the worst week ever to try to do nail swatches–I’ve been painting and generally not taking care of my hands lately, so my cuticles are in rough shape. But you get the idea of how these colors look against my skin tone. Kennedy is a nice nude, though I think I need something with more peach in it to suit my skin tone. It would be really gorgeous against really dark skin! Martha is a cool-toned pale pink. Both of these polishes were opaque in two coats and had average drying time. I didn’t get a chance to swatch Payton yet, but I already have a feeling she’s going to be June’s polish of the month, so you’ll get a chance to see her next week. :)

This month, Julep added a tube of their new DD Creme to the Maven boxes. They’re really playing up the “DD” part of this product, calling it “delightfully dewy”, “daily defense”, “dramatically different”, “damage diminishing” and “dynamic do-all” makeup. This product retails for $36/1-oz. tube ($28.80 for Mavens). I’m not a big fan of BB creams so I’m not sure how I’ll like this stuff; my initial impression of it is that it’s going to be way too “dewy” for my combo skin, and while it makes my skin look really nice, I do still need concealer for my undereye circles and the redness around my nose. I’ll post a full review with pictures next week, once I’ve had time to properly test it.

So that’s it for my June Maven box! Did you get a Maven box this month? If so let me know, because I’d love to see your swatches and hear your thoughts on the new DD Creme.

If you’re interested in becoming a Julep Maven and getting a box with $40+ worth of polish and other goodies every month for $19.99, you can sign up using my affiliate link here. (I earn reward points when you sign up using my link. If you’d rather not use the affiliate link you can go directly to Julep.com to take the style quiz, browse the FAQs, and sign up!)

Belated Totally Doable I Have A Life April Nail Art Challenge: Day 25: Gold/silver

For some reason I thought we didn’t have to do the gold/silver nails until today. Oops! Better late than never, I suppose.
I wanted to show off the gold shimmer in this peachy polish with a gold design on top, but I’m not sure it turned out quite the way it looked in my mind. I think there wasn’t enough contrast between the two polishes to really make the design stand out. Anyway, it was fun to try something different!