Monday, 22 August 2016

Jacava Purples

Recently Lauren from The Naily Mail has been having a polish sale, and I took the chance to snap up some more Jacava polishes. I LOVE Jacava, and they seem to have gone out of business, so I was really happy to get these. 

I used three of these for this look, all purples. I started with a base using Purple Promise (the dark creme) and Blueberry Muffin (the lilac creme) and then used Marrakesh Nights (the dark purple shimmery one) and some tape for the triangles.

Marrakesh Nights is a bit too dark to really show over Purple Promise in these photos, but in real life it's a bit more visible.

Both the cremes are the usual excellent Jacava quality - Blueberry Muffin is a one coater and I used two for Purple Promise. 

I love the Jacava brushes as they're very narrow, which works really well for me, and the long handle makes them really easy to control. 

Sunday, 21 August 2016

Neon Watermarble

I wore these for a couple of days at the end of last week. I used 6 of the Models Own Polish for Tans for this watermarble.

I started with a base of Models Own Coconut Cream, and then used Island Hop, Barrier Reef, Boat Party, Sarong Wrap, Beach Hut and Beach Fire to watermarble over the top. 

These polishes spread so easily on the water and are perfect for water marbling. I imagine I'll be doing plenty more of these in future.

 I love how these came out!

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Pink Roses

I've done freehand rose nails before more than once, but it's something I end up doing fairly regularly, because I like them so much.

The base for these nails is Barry M Rose Hip and Huckleberry. I then used Models Own Coconut Cream, Island Hop and Barrier Reef to paint the roses, and MoYou London Spring Green and Key Lime for the leaves. I then topcoated over everything for a smooth finish.

I'm pretty pleased with the right hand too - although don't look at my messy cleanup and dry cuticles! Somehow I can paint my nails on the right hand, but not do the cleanup!

I'd love to know your thoughts! Comments are lovely (even if you have criticism!)

Sunday, 7 August 2016

Neon Spirals with Models Own Polish for Tans

SOMEHOW, I mysteriously acquired these fabulous Models Own colours today. They just fell into my basket when I wasn't looking. 

I mean, oof. Look at them! Some of them are from the new 2016 Polish for Tans range, and a couple (I think the yellow and the bright orange) are from older ones that I didn't have. 

Anyway. This is what I did with them.  I used the base colour I was already wearing (Barry M Fondant) which had been on for a couple of days) and some What's Up Nails vinyl stencils, and sponged on random blobs of all the new polishes.

I love how this came out!  The stencils were a bit fiddly to use, especially on my other hand, but I'm happy with the result, and I'm hoping I can keep these on for a couple of days. 

There are one or two splodgy areas where the polish went under the stencil, but I'm choosing to pretend you can't see them.


Sunday, 31 July 2016

Inspired by an Elephant: Rhinestone Skittle Nails

I live near Sheffield, and there is currently a fantastic art installation and charity fundraiser going on across the city, called the Herd of Sheffield. You can read more about it here. To cut a long story short, Sheffield is full of elephants - the big ones have been created by various artists, and the small ones have been made by local primary schools.  There is SO MUCH nail art inspiration amongst them all!

Today's nails were inspired by this theatrical baby elephant, Nelly Noodle, who is inside the Crucible (my very favourite Sheffield place!). I LOVE her toenails. 

I did a simple skittle using Barry M Guava and Key Lime, Illamasqua Prosperity, Essence Flashy Pumpkin and Barry M Blood Orange. I then used topcoat to stick on my smallest rhinestones in a random colour order.

I realised afterwards that I'd got the purple and the orange the wrong way round, but never mind!

I love rhinestones! I haven't worn any for ages, but now I see these, I can't think why! Look how they're reflecting in the sunshine!

So sparkly!

People always ask whether rhinestones are really messy and impractical, but if you stick them down with topcoat and then topcoat over them, they pretty much stay in place through a normal day. 

I will not be leaving it so long til I use rhinestones again! And I will definitely be doing more nails based on the Herd of Sheffield elephants!

Thursday, 28 July 2016

Nailbox! UK Subscription Polish Box

I was so excited to be asked to review the June Nailbox! I've seen so many of these subscription boxes around for everything from dog toys to makeup to sweets, and only fairly recently heard about Nailbox. I'd heard good things, so I jumped at the chance. 

Nailbox is a subscription service where for £13.50 a month, you get a box with
three or four different nail polishes, and one or two nail care or nail art items. These include lots of big brands like OPI, China Glaze, MoYou London, Nails Inc and many others.  I was skeptical at first - I have so much nail varnish already, surely I would get a duplicate or colours that are similar to what I already have? 

The June 2016 box is themed around Festival Fever, and contains 4 polishes and some nail art tape. 

OPI Is Mai Tai Crooked - usually costs at least £9
Bourjois Turquoise Block - usually costs around £5.99
Rimmel Cheeky Chap - usually costs around £2.99
Essie Jazzy Jubilant - usually costs around £7.99
Elegant Touch Metalllic Nail Art Tape - usually costs around £4

So I calculate the value of the box at around £30, which is obviously lots more than the £13.50 the box costs! In fact in some shops, you couldn't buy one bottle of OPI for that amount. 

It was also a big plus in that there were no duplicates in my collection, and the OPI and the Essie weren't even similar to any polishes I own. The nail art tape is gorgeous! There are five long strips each of 6 different colours. I use striping tape from time to time, and not as often as I'd like, because I generally find the rolls really fiddly to use. I love the idea of having nice short strips all ready for you to peel off the card! Plus, look at that third one down! It's copper, but it's full of rainbows in the light!

So, what did I do with the contents?  I decided to try two different looks. First up is a floral design. I started with a base of the Rimmel, which is a one coater that applies nicely and dries to a matte finish. Then I freehanded some leaves with the Bourjois, and flowers with the OPI. I found that the green didn't really contrast with the blue enough to show clearly in the photos, but it was more obvious in real life.  I sponged a bit of the glitter from the Essie into the flower centres and topcoated everything. I wore these nails for two days. 

My thoughts about the polishes after making this first design was that the Rimmel was really nice, and I really really like the peachy orange of the OPI. I didn't feel I used enough of the Essie or the Bourjois to really comment. 

Next up I wanted to swatch all the colours individually.  I made a skittle across all my nails, and then used the tape to make a rays design on two of my nails. 

The green swatched beautifully - it applies really well and is another one coater. The OPI is a gorgeous colour, but is a bit thinner and streakier than the other two, and needed two coats. I preferred to topcoat the Rimmel one, as I wasn't crazy about the matte finish. 

I did the ray design freehand and then added the tape to cover any wobbles on the joins.  I topcoated over everything just in case the tape wasn't sticky enough (I think it was though) and because I want to wear these for a couple of days. 

Overall, I'm massively impressed! I'm trying really hard to spend less at the moment, but I am so tempted to sign up. The August box is called "Into the Sunset", which sounds gorgeous. It's my birthday in early September, so maybe I need to treat myself!

You can check out Nailbox on their website here

This box was provided by Nailbox for my honest review. See my Disclaimer for more details. 


Saturday, 2 July 2016

Lolly Gloss Watermarble

Here are some more nails I wore in the last couple of weeks, that I hadn't got round to blogging.  I thought I'd see whether the Barry M Lolly Gloss polishes work for watermarbling.... and they do! 

I started with a base of Barry M Cotton, and then watermarbled using Pink Candy, Purple Pop, Orange Fizz and Cherry Drop. 

As you can see, they work really well.  I'd wondered before about water marbling with sheer polishes, but the OPI Color Paints I have are only minis, and I wasn't keen to waste loads of polish. The Barry Ms are a fraction of the price, and are easier to replace, so I went with those. Plus these smell pretty!

What do you think? I really love how these look, and I'll be doing this again. I wish they did a green and a yellow as well!


Friday, 1 July 2016

Pink Gradient with Gold Mesh Stencil

As promised, here are some of the nails I've worn recently, but hadn't got round to posting. 

I wore these a couple of weeks ago. The pink gradient is sponged on and used Barry M Cotton and Sugar Plum.

I then used the mesh vinyls from Whats Up Nails, and painted on a stamping polish by Colors by Llarowe, Golden Rule.  Because this was a stamping polish, it was a bit on the thick side, and maybe wasn't ideal for nail vinyls, as you can see in some spots the pattern isn't completely sharp.

Still, I think these looked pretty good! I especially like how Golden Rule looks in the sunshine.


Thursday, 30 June 2016

Mermaid Nails

I haven't posted for a couple of weeks - sorry! I don't even have any reasons. I've been doing my nails, just not posting. 

Anyway, here is what I have on right now, some mermaid fish-scale nails using more of my stencils from Whats Up Nails. 

I started with a base of Barry M Pacific, which is a greeny blue metallic polish. This was two coats. 

I then used the vinyls and splodged on a random pattern using 3 textured glitters: 2true Christy (silver) and Barry M VIP (blues) and Fashion Icon (purples).  The final design was very very textured, so I added one coat of Seche for a little bit of smoothness and shine. 

I really like how these came out, and they are really sparkly in the sunlight.

I think next time I would use a more contrasting base colour though, so the fish scale pattern shows a bit more clearly. Having said that, the vinyl stencils themselves are really good. I bought loads of designs, so I have lots more coming up!

Saturday, 11 June 2016

Crucible Theatre Nails v2

I've posted before about how much I love the Crucible Theatre (see here for my previous nails) and I was there on Thursday night for Artistic Director Daniel Evans' leaving do, so I decided it was the perfect time to redo my Crucible nails. 

I love the Crucible so much! It's my far my favourite theatre ever, and I go often (although not often enough for my liking!)

These are just a straightforward chevron skittle. I used nail vinyls from What's Up Nails to make these. The base colours are Barry M Blue Grape, Essence Flashy Pumpkin, Barry M Blood Orange, Illamasqua Prosperity and Barry M Key Lime. The black top colour is OPI 4 In the Morning.  

I'm happy with how these came out. They're much tidier than my previous effort, and the colours are clearer. 
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