Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Indie Spotlight: Spellbound Nails Can I Keep You?

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

Hello, hello!  I'm continuing with the Halloween theme today with a gorgeous Spellbound Nails polish.  Ashley, owner and creator of Spellbound Nails, has a created a beautiful Halloween collection inspired by the movie Casper.  Along with Hocus Pocus, Casper is a movie I make sure to watch around Halloween every's just so cute!  So when I found out Ashley was making a polish collection inspired by it, I knew it would be really special.  The collection is titled Give Up the Ghost and contains 6 polishes, 5 of which glow in the dark.  I've got one of these to show you today and it just so happens to be my favorite of the collection!

Can I Keep You? is obviously (at least if you've seen the movie) inspired by the line Casper whispers to Kat after they first meet and later when he becomes human for the night.  Can I Keep You? is an amethyst crelly base with bright yellow stars and hexes and orange shreds.

There's no two ways about it, this polish is just fun!  You guys know I was sunk at purple, but I love the glitter combo in it as well!  The formula here is also good, opaque in 2-3 coats (I'm wearing 3 here with one coat of Seche Vite on top) and the glitters were quite easy to get out of the bottle.  Please ignore the bubbly you see in the macro shot...that was an application error (cuz I was going too fast!) and has nothing to do with the polish itself.  If you give a bit more time between layers to let the polish dry, you won't have an issue.  I know better, but I was just in a hurry to get this lovely on my nails!

In addition to beautiful color, fun glitter, and a great formula, Can I Keep You? has a super strong glow in the dark effect!  My poor camera isn't well equipped to deal with photos in the dark, but even it grabbed a pretty good shot of the glow on this beauty.  
 Ashley's creations never let me down and, if you're looking for a fun Halloween collection to try out this year, I highly recommend the Give Up the Ghost collection!  Can I Keep You? is currently available on the Spellbound Nails site for $9 for a full size bottle.  If you love the whole collection, you can nab it in full size for $53 or mini for $27 (which is a great deal on both counts!).  Be sure to check out Spellbound Nails on Facebook to keep up to date on new releases, swatch photos, and other important info!

Thanks so much for reading and I hope you enjoyed the post!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Indie Spotlight: Pretty & Polished Little Miss Scare-All

*Pretty & Polished products provided for honest and unbiased review.  All other products mentioned were purchased by me*

Hello all!  I'm excited to bring you my first Halloween polish swatch of the season!  Halloween is my favorite holiday and therefore, I'm always excited to see what the indie makers come up with for the season.  Pretty & Polished has recently released their Halloween 2014 trio and I've got one of the set to show you today!

Little Miss Scare-All is comprised of tiny bright pink, copper, and red glitters swimming in a gorgeous purple jelly base.  I wasn't sure how I'd like this one when I saw it in the bottle.  But once I got it on my nails, I was blown away by the depth in this polish; it's stunning! I love the way all the little glitters catch the light and the colors are perfect for Halloween and autumn in general.

LMSA is also fully opaque in 2-3 coats.  I'm showing just 2 coats here with a coat of Seche Vite on top to smooth out any bumpy bits.  The formula is great, very smooth and easy to apply.  My bottle is a little on the thick side, but not enough to be a problem.  Durability is good as well.  I wore this one for about 2 days with little to no tip wear and no major chips.

Pretty & Polished has quickly become one of my favorite indie brands.  The polishes are always flawless with gorgeous and unique colors and finishes.  You really can't go wrong!

Little Miss Scare-All is currently available on the Pretty & Polished site for $8.50 for a full-size, 15ml bottle.  You can also purchase it as part of the Halloween 2014 Trio which is listed for $26 (plus you'll get a free LE bottle if you buy the set during October.  I have it, trust me, you want it!).   I'm definitely eying Black is the New Orange from this set as well...I love thermals and this one just screams Halloween!  Be sure to follow P&P on Facebook for updates on new releases, swatch photos, and any other important info!

Thanks so much for reading, I hope you enjoyed this post!

Friday, September 26, 2014

Product Review: Born Pretty Store, Quirky Arabesque Stamping Plate

*Born Pretty Store products provided for honest and unbiased review.  All other products mentioned were purchased by me.*

Hello there, everyone!  You may remember me mentioning how much I love stamping at the moment, so when Born Pretty Store asked me to review some items, I knew right away I wanted to give some stamping items a try!

 Image from Born Pretty Store

Whilst perusing their site, which if you haven't been has tons of great nail art items at really reasonable prices,  I came across some fun plates.  I decide to try out plate QA88 with a pattern they called "Quirky Arabesque".  Fitting, no?  The swirly patterns and "infinity" style appealed to me right away.  (Infinity plates are ones with designs that cover the whole plate so you can stamp anywhere and get an "infinite" number of patterns.)  This is a smaller plate at just over 2 inches across so it's a little more limited than, say, the Pueen Encore plates or MoYou's...but it's still a pretty pattern with lots of great looks.

I began this manicure with 3 coats of Sinful Colors Easy Going, a barely there, pink creme.  Initially when I saw this plate, I thought it might be good for leadlighting so I wanted to start with a light base to try that out.  The stamping polish I used is part of a set from Born Pretty Store and I'll be reviewing that set in a few days.  Overall, QA88 is a good plate.  I had no issues getting it to stamp and I received it in perfect condition with no scratches or dents.  You can see a few spots on the tips of my nails where the pattern "skipped", but that is more likely due to my own stamping skills (or lack thereof; I'm getting better, but not perfect!) or the fact that a few of my nails curve under when they get to a certain length.  So that's nothing I can point to as a product issue. 

And, as I thought when I saw it, QA88 is great for leadlighting!  The pattern is open enough to allow you to fill in the design with whatever colors you choose.  I went with a multicolored design created with Zoya's Frida, Wet 'n' Wild's Trippin' on the Boardwalk, Simply Sweet in pink neon, and a random yellow.  Kind of has a circus vibe, but I love it!

If you're looking for an inexpensive infinity plate with a fun pattern, this one might just be for you! Plate QA88 retails for $2.09 and shipping is free with non-registered airmail or minimal with airmail tracking (depending on where you live).  I always find their shipping to be faster than I think it will be though their site does say it can take up to 20 days for delivery.  If you decide to purchase this or any other items from Born Pretty Store, feel free to use my referral code, YFL91, to save yourself 10%!

Thank you so much for reading and I hope you enjoyed the post!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Indie Spotlight: Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer, It Got Away from Me, Yeah…Women of Doctor Who Subset Collection Sampler

*Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer products supplied for honest and unbiased review.  All other products mentioned were purchased by me*

Hi everyone!  Check me out...two posts within mere days of each other!  I can't help it; these lovely indie makers keep sending me gorgeous things to swatch that I simply must share with you!  

Today's post includes some swatches of two upcoming Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer polishes.  BEGL is a brand I've wanted to try for a long time, but never had a chance to so I'm thrilled to bring you these two polishes today!  Both of these polishes are from BEGL's It Got Away from Me, Yeah... Collection, a 15 (!) polish collection inspired by Doctor Who.  The collection name seems somewhat appropriate as Julie began with a 6 polish set and it kind of snowballed from there lol  Since there are so many polishes in this collection, she's divided them up into subsets and the first set that will be released is the Women of Doctor Who and both of the polishes in this post are from that set.

I'm Dr. Martha Jones. Who the Hell Are You? is, as you may have surmised, inspired by the character Martha Jones.  I must admit I don't watch Doctor Who (though I know I should...there aren't enough hours in the day!), so I really can't offer any insight into Julie's inspiration.  But, I can tell you that IDMJWtHAY is a bright fuchsia creme that dries to a satin finish.  That lovely sheen you're seeing in the photos are the light-reflecting, shifty flecks in the polish...a beautiful touch that causes flashes of green, blue, and gold.

This is the second polish in a week that has me rethinking my dislike of matte finishes (excepting matte those!).  I've never been a huge fan of this particular finish, but there's something about the smooth finish here that I can't help but love! And the glass flecks in IDMJWtHAY give it a faux flakie feel.  The formula was very easy here (I'm showing 3 flawless coats here) with no dragging or other nasties to worry about.  

The beauty of a satin or matte finish polish is that you can get a separate look out of them simply by adding top coat.  Which I did in the photo below.

 One coat of Seche Vite deepens the color a bit and, of course, pumps up the shine.  If you're in the market for a bright polish with a unique finish and plenty of versatility, I urge you to give IDMJWtHAY a go!

Next up is A Snogging Booth?, a lightly textured, red and black, full coverage microglitter polish with a pop of holographic glitter.  This was a pain to photograph, but I loved the polish!  The texture kept throwing my camera into a tizzy, but hopefully I've managed a few decent shots so you can get an idea of the fun going on here.  Textured polishes can be...well...they can just look gross sometimes.  This is not the case with A Snogging Booth?.  The texture is a bit less than the Zoya PixieDust polishes, but is still evident on the nail...sort of a fine sandpaper sort of a finish.  The holographic bits give it a lovely shimmer as well.

I wore this in 3 coats, though in hindsight, I think I might have preferred 2.  The coverage is great, but the glitter is very dense so it will pile up quickly and give some uneven edges if you try to use thick coats.  It's not enough of an issue to bother me but you may want to be aware that it's just a touch finicky (as I think many textured polishes are).

Since we're dealing with a matte-like finish again, I decided to top coat A Snogging Booth? to see what it would look like.

Much like the aforementioned PixieDusts, A Snogging Booth? with top coat is a whole different beautiful animal!  Another polish with two looks in one bottle...gotta love it!

The Women of Doctor Who collection goes on sale starting Sunday, September 21, at 3:30 PM, EDT.  Both of these polishes will retail for $8.50 for a full size bottle.  Be on the look out for the next Doctor Who release coming in October with the third installment in November.  All of the Doctor Who polishes will be available through November after which they will be if you see something you like, don't wait!  Be sure to follow Blue-Eyed Girl Lacquer on Facebook for information on collaborations (like her same-day-release Disney Duo collab with Sweetheart Polish!), upcoming release dates, and other important stuff! You can also follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest!

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

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Indie Spotlight: Pretty & Polished, Fall Collection & It's Funnier in Enochian Collection Sampler (Photo Heavy)

*Pretty & Polished products provided for honest and unbiased review. All other products mentioned were purchased by me*

Hello, hello!  I hope everyone is ready for autumn because the indie Fall Collections are starting hit the virtual shelves and there's a lot to love!  I was fortunate to get to swatch from not one but THREE upcoming Pretty & Polished collections and I'll be showing you polishes from two of those collections today.  Both P&P's Fall 2014 Collection and their Supernatural-inspired collection, It's Funnier in Enochian, are currently available for purchase on their site and I'm sure you'll love them all so let's check out some swatches!

I Can Quit Anytime I Want is a polish from the 5-polish collection It's Funnier in Enochian.  I used to watch Supernatural forever ago but I went several years without cable TV and just never got back into it.  That said, it was always entertaining and great for the eye candy!  ICQAIW is a deep, deep brick red jelly (it looked like espresso in the bottle) that dries to a velvety matte finish.  I was very surprised by how much I loved the finish on this one as I don't generally care for mattes (unless there's glitter involved).  However, ICQAIW's finish is so perfect I can't help but love it!

I'm showing 4 coats of ICQAIW in these photos; it is quite sheer and because of that, it's going to be great for layering, jelly sandwiches (as you'll see in a few moments), and leadlighting.  The formula is just about flawless, although my bottle did have a little bit of pigment that was unmixed.  A good shake fixed that problem though and it did not affect my finished swatches at all.  Additionally, because of the matte finish, there's almost no drying time to worry about...bonus!

I mentioned earlier that the versatility of this polish is great, check out the photos below!

I decided to add a coat of Seche Vite to ICQAIW in the photo on the left.  It really brings out that jelly squishiness that we all love so much.  Then, of course, I had to do a jelly sandwich!  I added on coat of Shirley Ann Nail Lacquer's Wedded Bliss and then one coat of ICQAIW with a final coat of SV on top.  Beautiful!  I Can Quit Anytime I Want is available on the Pretty & Polish website for $8 for a full size bottle. This is a beautiful polish, with a lot of versatility and you definitely don't want to miss it!

Take the Long Way Home is the first of the Fall 2014 Collection polishes I have to show you.  An eye-catching gold glitter, TtLWH is greatly changed by light variation.  In bright light, it's a sunny, vivid gold, but takes on an antiqued, burnished color in the shade.  You'll definitely want to check out all the listing swatches on this one to see how much difference the light makes!

TtLWH is fully opaque in 2-3 coats (I'm showing 3 here with one coat of Seche Vite). I always worry that full coverage glitters will be an issue, but TtLWH has a great formula; not too thick or gloppy. Application was a breeze!

Gold is a big color for the fall collections this year (this is the second one I've swatched for the season already) and Take the Long Way Home is a great polish, if you need a full coverage gold glitter to add to your stash!

There is S'more to Life is a crelly glitter polish and I love it!  The inspiration and this polish match up so well!  The creamy, almost white base is the marshmallow with the golden caramel hexes as the graham crackers and deep, chocolate glitters as the Hersey's bar (because it's not really a S'more with a Hersey bar!)...and the total is greater than the sum of its parts, just like the original!

I wore TiStL in 3 coats with one coat of Seche Vite to smooth out any rough glitter bits (not that there were many).  Application was easy, with little to no fishing for glitters.  Just a great polish with a lovely visual payoff!

In addition to being a dead on dupe for its inspiration, There is S'more to Life is perfect for autumn.  The sparkle of gold from the glitter gives it a touch of sophistication that will have you sighing every time you catch a glance of it!  

Last and my favorite of this set is Ninjas Hate Crunchy Leaves...makes sense, right? ;)  This bright glitter topper consists of autumnal-hued glitters in varying sizes.  It's like Vermont in the fall in a bottle! 

NHCL is packed with glitter so I had no trouble getting a good distribution onto my nails.  I chose to show this polish over a candy corn inspired gradient (comprised of Sinful Colors Snow Me White and Wet 'n' Wild in Cursed and Get Lucky) because I'm totally jonesing for Halloween already lol  It turned out to be the perfect way to show off this colorful topper, doncha think?  So much fun!

The Fall 2014 Collection is currently available on the Pretty & Polished website and each of these polishes retail for $8.50 for a full size bottle.  Be sure to follow P&P on Facebook as well to keep updated on new releases, sales, and other important info!

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

Friday, September 12, 2014

Indie Spotlight: LynBDesigns The Fault in Our Stars Collection Part 2

*LynBDesigns products provided for honest and unbiased review.  All other products were purchased by me*

Hello, everyone! We've had a lovely cool shift in weather and it's starting to really feel like fall in Chicago.  I know I should be worried that it means winter is just around the corner, but I love autumn so much I just can't care at the moment :)

On to the polish! I promised earlier in the week that I'd have the second half of LynBDesigns The Fault in Our Stars collection to share with you and here they are! (If you'd like a refresher over the first 3 gorgeous shades in this collection, you can see my swatches here.)

An olive-toned antique gold with a hint of pink shimmer, Tasting the Stars kind of snuck up on me.  I wasn't expecting to love it so much just looking at it in the bottle, but once I got it on my nails I didn't want to take it off!  I won't lie; this color is probably not for everyone but to me, it's a gorgeous, sophisticated color (and perfect for fall as well!).

Tasting the Stars was easy to apply and is opaque on its own in 2-3 coats (I'm showing 3 coats with 1 coat of Seche Vite here).  Jenna (LynBDesigns creator) mentioned that this would also look great over black, and I'm pretty sure she's right.  I'll definitely be giving it a try!  No application issues here, just a smooth easy finish.

If you're a sucker for fall colors, be sure to snag Tasting the Stars for your stash.  You won't regret it (I hear crunchy leaves in my head every time I look at it)!

Wish Granting Factory is up next.  In the bottle, this polish looked bronze-y orange but, once I applied it, I discovered a lovely plummy jelly brimming with holographic flash and golden shimmer. 

Opaque in 2-3 coats (I'm wearing 3 with 1 coat of Seche Vite), Wish Granting Factory has a smooth, easy to apply formula.  I wore this polish for about 3 days with little to no tip wear, so durability isn't an issue.

Wish Granting Factory is another shade that will be perfect for fall, the wine-hued base practically screams autumn.  It's another favorite of mine from this set (I seem to have a lot of those)!

Ok, I'm going to gush a bit. Our Little Infinity is by far and away my absolute favorite in this collection and is definitely in my Top 5 favorites of all time.  Not only is it purple, it's a shifter with holographic's like Jenna reached into my brain and made this one just for me! A royal blue to rich plum multichrome with flashes of gold and pink, Our Little Infinity is nothing short of spectacular.  It's like a purple disco ball when the sunlight hits it and the shift in lower light is a vision.  Our Little Infinity seems to glow and its distractability factor is off the charts!  I'm thankful I don't drive when I wear this one...I can barely tear my eyes away from it!

*sigh*...I mean, just LOOK. AT. IT!  In addition to her spellbinding good looks, Our Little Infinity has a beautifully smooth formula, though you might need an extra coat for full opacity.  I'm showing 4 thin coats with a coat of Seche Vite in these photos.  I wore this for 3 days on 2 separate occasions and had almost no visible wear.  It's the perfect polish, I swear!

I did my best to capture the gorgeousness of Our Little Infinity, I hope you'll realize how special this one is because if you love purple and sparkly and NEED this polish!

The Fault in Our Stars collection will be available on the LynBDesigns Etsy site on Friday, Sept. 19.  Tasting the Stars and Wish Granting Factory will each retail for $8 for a full size bottle with Our Little Infinity at $12.  I highly recommend following LynBDesigns on Facebook to keep updated on new releases, sales, and giveaways.  Jenna recently started a fan group on Facebook as well called LynB Loves.  Joining it will gain you access to sneak peeks and other great perks (like pre-order discounts!), so you might want to consider that, too. 

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

Monday, September 8, 2014

Indie Spotlight: LynBDesigns The Fault in Our Stars Collection Part 1

*LynBDesigns products supplied for honest and unbiased review.  All other products mentioned were purchased by me*

Hello, hello!  I hope everyone has had a great weekend!  My Wildcats pulled out a heart-stopping (I don't call them the Cardiac 'Cats for nothing) win over Iowa State on Saturday so all is well in my world :)  But we're here to talk about nail polish so I shan't bore you with football any more!

A few weeks ago, Jenna from LynBDesigns asked me to swatch her September collection which is inspired by The Fault in Our Stars.  Jenna consistently puts out a quality polish and hers are some of my all time favorite indie polishes so of course I said "yes!" immediately. Even though I've neither read the book nor seen the movie, I feel like polish transcends its inspiration often enough that you don't really need to have intimate knowledge of that inspiration to appreciate it.  However, I imagine that many of you will love this one for the connection to the book.  I'll be showing you 3 polishes out of the 6-polish collection today.

First up is Time Slut.  I love the name of this polish even though I have no idea what the reference is lol  Time Slut is a pale lavender metallic polish with a subtle bit of electric blue to violet flash that grabs the light beautifully.  I must have autumn on the brain because this polish just reminds me of a cashmere sweater...something about the color is so cozy!

I'm wearing 3 coats of Time Slut with one coat of Seche Vite in these photos.   This polish has a great formula and I had no troubles with it at all.  Since Jenna sent these to me with plenty of testing time, I am also able to tell you that I wore this polish for 3 days with just a touch of tip wear so durability is also great!

Metallics typically aren't my favorite finish for a polish; they tend to be finicky to apply and can look streaky and uneven.  Time Slut does not fall into that category.  Easy application and a gorgeous color make it stand out from the pack.  

Zeno's Tortoise Paradox is the only crelly glitter polish in the bunch and the next up for review.  A pistachio-leaning green crelly base chock full of blue, white, green, and pink glitters in hexes and squares, ZTP is colorful and eye-catching.  ZTP reads as a springtime polish to me, the green base and pastel glitters feel appropriate to the growing season and I can definitely see myself pulling it out of the stash come April for a fresh Spring mani.

Again I'm showing 3 coats here and you'll most likely need a top coat (1 coat of Seche Vite shown here) just to smooth the larger glitters out a bit.  The opacity is good here and I probably could have gotten away with 2 coats.  No dragging or streaking and very little glitter-fishing at all.  Just a great formula!

I always love a good crelly polish and Jenna really has a knack for coming up with unique color combos.  Zeno's Tortoise Paradox is a fun polish and, if you're a fan of the crelly, you'll definitely want to grab it for your stash! 

Okay? Okay is the only holographic polish in the collection and is one of my favorites of the set.  Seriously, you add anything holographic to anything blue and you've got a winner!  A sky-blue creme scattered holographic with a subtle pink shimmer, Okay? Okay is breath-taking!  This one reminds me of crisp autumn skies and that little nip in the air that tells you some glorious fall days are on their way.

Opaque in 2-3 flawlessly smooth coats, I had no issues with application.  Durability was also an A+ with almost no tip wear after 3 days (with 1 coat of Seche Vite).  If you're looking for stunning blue polish to add to your collection, Okay? Okay is just the ticket!

The Fault in Our Stars collection will be available on the LynBDesigns Etsy site on Friday, Sept. 19.  Okay? Okay will retail for $10 for a full size bottle with Time Slut and Zeno's Tortoise Paradox at $8 each.  I highly recommend following LynBDesigns on Facebook to keep updated on new releases, sales, and giveaways.  Jenna recently started a fan group on Facebook as well called LynB Loves.  Joining it will gain you access to sneak peeks and other great perks (like pre-order discounts!), so you might want to consider that, too.

I hope you've enjoyed this post and that you'll tune in later this week for swatches of the second half of The Fault in Our Stars collection...there's a polish in the second bunch that will blow your mind, especially if you love purple, and duochromes, and holographic won't want to miss it!  Thanks so much for reading!