Monday, August 18, 2014

Indie Spotlight: Mod Lacquer Alien Encounter and Zero Point

*Mod Lacquer products provided for honest and unbiased review.  All other products mentioned were purchased by me*

Hi everyone!  A couple of weeks ago, Jennifer from Mod Lacquer put out the call for reviewers and I was lucky enough to snag a spot this go-round.  I've had the pleasure of wearing Jennifer's creations before (as you might remember from this post) so I've been on pins and needles to get my paws on this shipment!  I was not disappointed, her polishes are superb and without further ado, let's get down to it!

Both polishes I'm reviewing today are from the Above Top Secret collection, a UFO/Alien-inspired set of holographic loveliness.  Alien Encounter is a grassy spring green linear holo.  The effect on these polishes is insane and will thrill you to no end in sunlight!  Seriously, these babies should come with a warning label about their highly effective distractability (and yes, I know that's not a word but I'm using it anyway).

Alien Encounter applied like a dream.  I'm showing 3 smooth coats here with no top coat.  I totally could have gotten away with just 2 coats but I never like to skimp when it comes to holo.  Pile it on, I say!  Rainbows for everyone!  

I decided to do something a little special with these swatches because it's such a fun theme for a collection.  My Alien Encounter swatches come complete with their own "little green man", created with AE itself and the addition of some black striping polish.  I may have to recreate this with a bit more detail in the future...he's so cute!  I shall name him "George"!

Next up is Zero Point.  Zero Point is listed on Etsy as a pink linear holographic polish but it really leans more silver on me.  There is the barest blush of pink in certain lights but it's not showing up in my photos unfortunately. (If you're looking for a pinker holo, I'd suggest Aerial Phenomenon from the same collection.)

Again, the formula was nearly flawless and applied easily, no flooding or dragging.  2-3 coats for opacity (I'm wearing 3 here) and no top coat needed for shine.  I can't say enough nice things about Jennifer's polishes!  They're just stunning!

Zero Point, as near as I can understand it, is named after a technology used to power UFOs (and I'm probably completely wrong on that lol).  For my accent nail, I used a stamp (I'm sorry that I don't have a brand for you to refer to, but it was a random that I picked up off of Ebay I think) that looks a bit like a planet or an atom...either way, kinda spacey so I thought it fit with the theme.  I double stamped with a gold and then a black striping polish.  

Alien Encounter and Zero Point are currently available on Mod Lacquer's Etsy shop for $11 per each full size, 15ml bottle.   If you're interested in keeping up to date on new products, sales, and other important info, be sure to follow Mod Lacquer on Facebook.

I hope you've enjoyed this post and thank you so much for reading!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Sunday Similarities: Minty Teal Cremes

Hello again!  I've got a full Sunday Similarities post for you guys today so let's get a-movin'!  Mint remains a popular color choice no matter what the season and since I have about a billion of them in my stash, I decided to swatch a few and compare them for you.

These mints are in the teal family and are all cremes.  I'm comparing 4 polishes in this post: from left to right in the photo above are Sinful Colors Teal the End, NYC Tudor City Teal, Sally Hansen Triple Shine Dive In, and Sinful Colors Open Seas.  

As you can see,  Open Seas and Tudor City Teal have a bit more green and grey to them than Dive In and Teal the End, which are pretty much dupes.  Of the 4, Tudor City Teal has the sheerest formula, requiring 4 coats to get the opacity shown here.  Each of the others are shown in 2 coats here with no top coat on any of them.  

Do you need each of these polishes in your life?  Probably not, unless you're a nut like me ;)  Obviously, Teal the End and Dive In may be redundant, but Open Seas and Tudor City Teal differ by a shade or two.  I don't think Open Seas is still available in stores, being from a couple of seasons ago but I just picked up Teal the End for $1.99 at Walgreen's last week.  Tudor City Teal is available anywhere NYC is sold for $0.99 a bottle on average and Dive In tops the price list at around $4.99 wherever you find Sally Hansen products.

I hope you enjoyed this post and thanks so much for reading!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Leadlighting: The First Attempt

Hi there, all!  As I mentioned recently, I'm all about the stamping lately.  I love the looks that you can create with it and once you get the hang of it, it's so easy!  I know if you're just starting out stamping that you won't believe me, but I swear it's true.  Continuing with my stamping obsession, I decided it was high time I tried leadlighting.  Leadlighting is a technique which gives a finished look reminiscent of stained glass, which is were the name comes from.

I started with 3 coats of OPI My Vampire Is Buff and then stamped on top with Sinful Colors Black on Black and Pueen's Encore plate SE04B.  I topped everything with a coat of Seche Vite before I started the leadlighting part.

Basically, the premise of leadlighting is pretty simple.  It's like a coloring book, using sheer jelly polishes to fill in the stamped outlines.  I used Sally Hansen's Triple Shine in Grape Jelly mixed with a bit of Wet 'n' Wild's Trippin' on the Boardwalk to up the opacity a bit.  The SH is a great polish for leadlighting but it's very, very sheer.  I wanted a touch more opacity for this look.  After filling in a few random flowers, I decided I wanted another punch of color so I used SH's Triple Shine in Play Koi mixed with a homemade jelly polish (which you can learn how to do here). I just dabbed it onto the center of the non-purple flowers with a dotting tool.

I'm happy with this for my first attempt at a new technique.  My main issue is that I loved the mani so much before I added the color that I'm a bit disappointed that I tried it at all.  But it does have a lot of possibilities, which I'm pretty excited about.

Have you tried leadlighting?  I'd love to see your manicures!  Thanks so much for reading and I hope you enjoyed this post :)

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Sunday Similarities: Elevation Polish Haleakala & Colors by Llarowe Dirty Diana

Hey there, folks!  The other day whilst perusing Facebook, I saw Manicure Addict's swatch of Elevation Polish's Haleakala and immediately fell in love.  I jumped right over to Elevation's site and they had it in stock.  Because of unbelievably fast shipping, I received my bottle yesterday!  When I opened the package, my first thought was that Haleakala reminded me quite a bit of Colors by Llarowe's Dirty Diana.  So I figured it would make for a great Sunday Similarities post!

At first glance, you can tell just from the bottles that these ladies are not dupes.  But I really wanted to compare them on the nail so I swatched them both.

As you can see on the nail, there are some obvious differences.  Haleakala is much more purple whereas Dirty Diana is a vibrant pink.  Aside from the color, however, these two share a knock-your-socks-off linear holographic effect and a perfect formula!  I'm showing two coats of each here with no top coat. 

Since these are not really dupes at all, I highly suggest both or either for your collection.  Haleakala is currently available on Elevation's site for $12.50 for a full size bottle and Llarowe does have Dirty Diana up on their page as I write this, but only one full size bottle left at $12.  I do believe mention has been made of Llarowe re-releasing the Michael Jackson tribute collection, of which Dirty Diana is part, so don't despair if you miss it this time!

As always, thanks so much for reading and I hope you enjoyed the post!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Stamped Green Gradient Manicure

Hi everyone!  It's a beautiful Saturday here in Chicago and I'm inside, typing up a post on my neglected blog.  Work has been taking a huge toll on my hands, I should post a picture of how they look after I get done polishing a million little bits of metal lol  It's so hard to get them clean!  And then I've had breakage so I'm back down to nubs.  I actually am enjoying them.  My longer length always gets caught on things and I'm constantly stressed over breakage.  So, not having to worry about that makes life a bit easier.  Anyway, on to the manicure!

I've been a stamping fool lately, can't get enough of it!  I picked up the Pueen Cosmetics Encore stamping plates a couple of weeks ago.  The images are beautiful and offer almost endless possibilites for stamping...I love them!  They are currently available on Pueen's Storenvey site and Amazon for $24.99 per four, double-sided plates set. 

I began this manicure with a gradient.  I used Lilypad Lacquer's Apple Spritzer (which I snagged off of Llarowe when they had a huge sale a few weeks ago!) and Army of Me by Black Cat Lacquer (also purchased in the same sale).  It's my first experience with both of these brands and I wasn't disappointed with either!  Apple Spritzer is a delicate light green to gold holographic with a perfect formula.  Army of Me shares the perfect formula but is a deep almost-forest green holographic.  Both of these polishes are still available on Llarowe for $13 and $12, respectively.

After the gradient dried, I stamped over top with Sinful Colors Black on Black using Pueen's Encore plate SE01A.  I couldn't be happier with how this turned out!  The colors, the holo sparkle, the black perfect!  

I hope you all enjoyed this post and thanks for reading!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Enter All the Widgets!! The Great Polish Giveaway 2014: List of Participants

Hi there!  I've spent the morning compiling a list of links for NPC's Great Polish Giveaway of 2014 and I thought it might be of interest to all of you.  Each participant of this giveaway has their own widget where you can earn up to three extra entries in addition to the widget on NPC's page.  In case you've missed it, this giveaway allows bloggers to nominate a polish for the grand prize, up to 200 polishes to one winner!  There are some great polishes included in this prize so I highly suggest you all enter, enter, enter!  The prize is currently sitting at 148 polishes...everything from Cirque and NCLA to Orly and China Glaze.  If you have a blog and want to get in on the nomination action, you can find out about it here.

I wasn't able to find a comprehensive list* of each participant and a link to their widget, so I decided to make my own!  I did my best to include everyone but I was unable to find links for some of the folks listed on the prize list, so if you don't see your name and would like to be included, please let me know!  The list starts below, in no particular order.  This is also a great way to find new blogs...there are so many folks participating that I didn't know so I'm thrilled to have some new people to follow :) Thanks so much for reading and I hope this is helpful!

1. Over the Top Coat
2. Polish Obsession 
3. Notes and Nails
4. Dividing by Zero
5. Domestic Vixen
6. Canadian Nail Fanatic
7. Ditch the Mittens
8. Lauryn Andrade
9. Simply Nailogical
10. A Little Polish
11. Me and My Nail Polish
12. Classy on the Run
13. Chantal's Corner
14. Mani-Addicted
15. Blacklace Cosmetics
16. Of Knit and Nails
17. Mom's Makeup Stash
18. Subscription Box-Oholic
19. Ivory Avenue
20. Melanie's Fancies
21. Quenne
22. In Jenn's Bag
23. The RNY Life
24. I Know All the Words
25. Seriously Swatched
26. My Lacquer Cabinet
27. We Didn't Miss It
28. Crafty Lady Abby
29. Beauty Fiends
30. Beyond Blush
31. Pink & Polished
32. Mom & Pop's Business Cents
33. Autumn-Rain
34. My Starlight Blessings
35. Wacky Laki
36. The Happy Sloths
37. A.M. Polishes
38. Gel-Luv
39. TLC Shopping
40. My Domestic Dish
41. Life and Polish
42. Einalem_Og
43. Intense Polish Therapy
44. Delight In Nails
45. Southern Sparkle Nail Art
46. Mario, Shut Up
47. Varnished Valkyrie
48. Globe and Nail
49. In Jeeb We Trust
50. Lace & Lacquers
51. Procrastinails
52. Chit Chat Nails
53. Polished & Glittered
54. Kelsie's Nail Files
55. Pretty Nails and Tea
56. Copycat Claws
57. Blushing Noir
58. Swatcher, Polish Ranger
59. A Girl & Her Polish
60. The Polished Mommy
61. Workaday Ramblings
62. Nailing It
63. Beaded Embellishments
64. MelSimLi Nails
65. Ruby Sprinkles
66. Crystal Pistol
67. The Nail Snail
68. PJ's and Polish
69. Nail Polish Mom
70. Awesome Possum Blogorium
71. The Super Secret Nail Blog
72. Claw of Cthulhu
73. Gee, Your Nails are Terrific
74. Beauty-Intel
75. As Samantha Sees It
76. Baubles & Bubbles
77. Darling Magpie
78. Manis and Makeovers
79. A Girl and Her Chicken Named Betty
80. Writing Whimsy 
81. Lady Maid Nails
82. Dagadelic
83. Storm and Stars
84. Polished to Precision
85. Dee's Polish
86. Will Paint Nails For Food
87. My Life In Turquoise
88. Sou-Douzaine
89. Hey Darling Polish
90. Miss DeVious Diva
91. Chameleon Souls
92. The Lazy Laquerista
93. Oh My Swatch
94. Good Lack, Nail
95. Sparkled Beauty
96. My Corner of the Forest
97. Olivia Frescura
98. Crafty Nail
99. PolishNV
100. Swatch and Review
101. Teen Polish Junkie
102. Rebecca Likes Nails
103. Manicurator
104. Beauty Infinitum
105. ChrissyAI
106. Ria Loves Pawlish
107. Let's Talk Makeup & Beauty
108. The Nail Never Stops
109. Colors Frenzy
110. Writing Beauty
111. Sassy Shelly
112. On a Chalkboard 
113. My Glittery Obsessions
114. Jeanne Melanson 
115. China Glaze Favs
116. Super Nails
117. Wendy's Contests Galore 
118. Everything Pretty 
119. Painted Pretty 
120. Jenn
121. Kitties and Polish Forever 
122. Paint Those Piggies
123. Lively Lacquer 
124. The Little Canvas  
125. The Polished Platypus
126. Kalyn Lord
127. Pointy Toe Shoe Crew 
128. Mae's Beauty 
129. talkerblogger
130. Canadian Mom Reviews
131. Amandalandish
132. Vanity Curve 
133. Tips For Every Day  
134. Lipstick & Lullabies
135. A Fresh Coat 
136. Frugalista Mamas
137. Eye Heart 
138. Painted Nubs
139. Addicted to Lacquer
140. in a nutshell... 
141. Polished Lifting 
142. Erica's Nails and More 
143. The Fancy Side 
144. Simple As a Flower 
145. Key of Marie
146. Rose's Book Corner
147. caffeine and colour
148. Follow in My Fabulousness
149. Streets Ahead Style 
150. Cozycomfycouch
151. Cosmetically Curious  
152. Nail Polish Junkie
153. Sparkled Beauty
155. Momsicals
156. Nails, The Final Frontier

*You can also check out the "official" list done by Taylor Moorby here.  As I'd already spent about 6 hours making my own list when NPC let me know there was a complete list, I wanted to post mine anyway.   I've continued to update by using Google and searching out new posts. Taylor's list has every participating blog whether or not the blogger has posted a link to their own widget for entering.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Great Polish Giveaway 2014~Cirque Colors Fascination Street

"What's this?" you say?  Two giveaways in one week?  That's crazy talk!  But, crazy as it might be, it's also pretty freakin' awesome!  In addition to my Two Year Birthdanniversary Giveaway that I'm currently hosting, I'm also taking part in the Great Polish Giveaway 2014 which is hosted by, Cirque Colors, NCLA, & Picture Polish.

This giveaway is offering one lucky person a chance to win up to 200 nail polishes!  Currently the number stands at 83 91, which is amazing all by itself especially when you check out the list and see exactly which polishes are up for grabs!  Basically, had this great idea for a giveaway and wanted to get bloggers involved.  Each blogger nominates a polish to be won in the giveaway and then promotes the giveaway on their blog.  You can enter separately on each participating bloggers' posts to gain more entries...pretty sweet deal!  I'm excited to participate, especially since I got to nominate one of my very favoritest polishes ever, Cirque's Fascination Street!  FS was the very first indie I ever bought and it instilled the righteous love of holographic polish into my very being!  You can check out my swatches of it below and don't forget to enter the giveaway at the end of the post! (If you have a blog and would like to nominate a shade for the giveaway, follow this link to sign up.) 

a Rafflecopter giveaway