Freitag, 27. Juli 2012

essence - ready for boarding base coat (review)

Hi everyone~

Today, I want to review a base coat by essence, released a little while ago with their ready for boarding limited edition. But not the base coat itself, but rather how it works with holographic polishes. I got this idea while chatting with Chiro from Nail of this Week maybe 3 weeks back, when she was playing with this base coat. I had already bought it myself back then, but didn't have the chance to try it yet.

Well, for my last manicure, the flip flop one, I decided to give it a shot. The manicure is based on the different base coats I used to compare the ready for boarding base coat with others. So why try it with holographic polishes in the first place? It dries to a slightly milky finish and appears to supply a lot of grip to the polishes you put on top. I think this is necessary, because this base coat is supposed to be a peel-off base coat.

For this review, besides the ready for boarding peel-off base coat, I also used essence studio nails 24/7 nail base, Microcell 2000 and Color Club stuck on you base coat. The latter being a random one from my stash. I don't really use it, but it's one of the clear base coats, different from the rest. I usually use the essence studio nails 24/7 nail base. I dries to a matte finish and dragging seemed to be less of a problem with it. I thought about trying it with a holo, because of that.

So first, what is this ready for boarding peel off base coat? It's a water based base coat that allows you to peel off any lacquer without the use of nail polish remover. It's suggested to be a top travel accessoire. In the picture above, you can see how it dries from white to somewhat milky transparent. It takes a while, maybe 15 minutes and as you can see from the picture, it shrinks. It actually already started shrinking while I was still applying... But well, you couldn't tell anymore, once the actual polish was on top.

I used Make Up Store Greta to test the four base coats for their "aqua base" qualities. This one proved to be a really difficult polish, when I tried it before. I had a lot of bald spots, dragging issues... the usual.

For the first two pictures, I used one coat of Greta on top of one coat of the respective base coat.

Pointer: Microcell 2000. Middle: essence studio nails 24/7 nail base. Ring: essence ready for boarding base coat. Pinky: Color Club stuck on you base coat.

So what can we tell after just one coat?  On my pointer, I have a few slight bald spots. My middle finger shows a little bit of dragging, but it's mostly fine. Greta applied almost flawless on my ring finger and there's major balding on my pinky. Even though Greta applied smoothly on top of the studio nails base coat, there's something very noticeable though: the holo effect seems to be almost gone. I had really high hopes for the studio nails base... boo.

Next is two coats of Greta.

Except for my pinky, coverage is almost the same for all of them. I still find the holographic effect on my middle finger a bit less pronounced, but it doesn't show as much anymore. On my ring finger, the holo looks to be "deeper", but since there was no balding or dragging anyway, this one gave me the least trouble. On my pinky, it required three coats to cover up all the balding from the first coat.

After this test, when I did my flip flop manicure, I did another test. I wanted to know how top coating this combo affects the peel off effect. And I was quite surprised just how much it changed the outcome! The pictures you saw above are from my left hand. I topcoated this one. On my right hand, I applied the whole manicure using the ready for boarding base coat and did not apply any top coat.

This is the mani after two days of wear, shortly before I removed it. So major tip wear was to be expected, but what surprised me are those holes and scratches in the middle of the nail. Apparently, the peel off effect means that if there's friction on top of the nail, it's starting to peel off, leaving you with those holes. This did not happen on my left hand where I had used a top coat. On the other hand, by topcoating it, the peel off effect gets lost. It was a lot harder to take it off, compared to less than 5 minutes for the right hand.

My verdict... I think I'll be using the reading for boarding base coat for my holos from now on. At least, for short time wear. Everything was surprisingly easy to take off on my right hand and left my nails without residue.

Have you tried this base coat? What is your opinion?

Donnerstag, 26. Juli 2012

The Lazy Days of Summer 4: Flip Flops


I guess, I'm the slowest out of all the participants of this challenge, but I hope I can pick up my slow pace when I'm on vacation 10 days from now.

So here's my manicure for the fourth theme, flip flops. I did this one a few times, never really satisfied, because I lacked ideas and that shows, I think. I liked my last one best and this is the one I'm posting about today.

My camera doesn't like holos very much...

I started with one coat of essence ready for boarding base coat, followed by two coats of Make Up Store Greta, my only linear silver holo... and by far the most expensive polish in my stash. When I bought that one, I really crossed a line I hadn't dared to cross before, hehe. Well, I thought, why not use a holo while we're having sunny summer weather here in Germany~

Then, I picked a black liner polish and painted a flip flop shape on my nails. Outside of this line, I applied Kleancolor Metallic Aqua using a striper brush. Using the same material, I also painted the v-shape. I topcoated that and applied the pink rhinestones. Done.

Totally nail polish unrelated... I really love how we're finally having summery weather here. After all, I get to go to the pool for the first time this year! But you know, I hate how the suddenly rather warm weather turns everyone into these aggressive moody people, being one of them myself. Getting yelled at for something ridiculous just because it is hot..? Seriously!? I'd rather have a cool summer, if that is what it takes for people to behave better.

And here's the list of all the lovely ladies participating in this challenge:

Sonntag, 22. Juli 2012

Another try on the water marble

Hi everyone!

I hope everybody is having a nice sunday doing something fun and relaxing! We finally got a day of sun here, so I really enjoyed taking a long walk with my dog earlier today. Now, I'm looking forward to the coming week supposedly being a sunny one!

The manicure I want to post about today is an old one. I did this sometime in June, I think. Not sure. It was the weekend after I got myself a set of Color Club neons from my local TK Maxx, that's for sure. I still haven't identified the set as the set and the polishes inside weren't labeled. But they were so bright and fun looking that I decided to try my luck with watermarbling again.

First of all, I painted my nails white to make the neons pop. Some say it's not necessary, I prefered to do so. For the marble, I used some bottled water that had no gas inside anymore (bleh...). Conviniently, it was room temperature too.

From the set, I picked a yellow, orange, pink and violet to marble with. The colors spread out okay, but I really have to get faster at drawing my patterns. I used a sewing pin to do so and it worked well, as long as I was fast enough. Also, I remembered taping my fingers this time which proved to be helpful.

The violet seems to be really sheer when used as a marble color, because I barely shows up. The orange and yellow blended a little bit too much, but I liked the look nevertheless. I'm not so happy with those huge air bubbles that formed though. Is there any trick to prevent those?

In the end, I took off all of the marbles except the ring finger one, the prettiest in my opinion, and re-painted them using a violet similar to that washed out one from the marble. I didn't take any pictures though. Even though only one nail was neon colored, the whole thing was still very bright for me. I think the whole marble would have been too bright for work anyway.

What do you think? Any tips to share? Does anyone know what Color Club neon set these might be from?

Have a great sunday! Until next time~

Freitag, 20. Juli 2012

The Lazy Days of Summer 3: Flag Day

Good evening everyone!

Before I'm ending up being too tired again to write a short blog post, I quickly want to show you my design for the third theme of the summer challenge. This one was not as easy for me as for a lot of other ladies. I don't like the colors of the German flag very much, the Japanese one appeared a little bit too easy, but I'm also not very attached to the American flag. Most did this theme around July 4th, so it was not unsurprising to see a lot of American themed manis. So here I was sitting, thinking of some flag to be my inspiration.

In the end, I got my inspiration when I took my dog for a walk. We always come by this office building that has three flags put up in front of the building. One being the European, one the German and the last being the Hassian flag. Hassia is the federal state I'm living in. I'm not doing that flag... it's just as "difficult" as the Japanese one. But I started thinking about using my city's flag for this manicure.

So here is my city's flag. Blue background with a lion in red and white. The golden french is supposed to represent the golden crown that should be in this very spot. Since my nails are too short right now, I didn't have enough room to paint one anymore, haha.

I used Catrice Pool Party at Night as my base color. I still love this polish a lot. I just wished it was a liiiittle bit more purple toned and it would be one of those shades tha I'm still looking for...

Anyway, when that was dry, I got my white acrylic paint and tried painting that lion. That was such a pain in the ass. The proportions are still off, but that's the best I could do. I'm really thinking about getting some high end white acrylic paint. I need it to be opaque immediately for those tiny things. I always end up messing up my details, when I have to layer the acrylics...The red is red acrylic paint. Probably the shade I use the least, hehe.

I finished with a golden french using my revell email color. Yeah, still not healthy to use, but it's just the french... I love how opaque it is though.

What do you think of my cute little lion?

Oh, and did I mention that my nails broke again? Like how can they break when they are this short!? But they did... :((

And here's the list of all the lovely ladies participating in this challenge:

Sonntag, 15. Juli 2012

The Lazy Days of Summer 2: Summer Ombre

Hi everyone~

I hope you're having a great weekend! Mine is almost over and it was sooooo short. But there's only three weeks left until my one-week vacation, yay.

Anyway, today I'm going to show you my Summer Ombre, second theme of the Summer challenge I'm participating in. I didn't do anything fancy this time. This is actually the first real ombre mani I did... hard to believe. I hadn't worn any orange in a while, so the color was decided. I didn't have much trouble finding some maching colors in my stash of untrieds. This is basically why I didn't do anything fancy... I wanted to use this mani to "swatch" a few of my untrieds. So glad I did...

For this mani, I picked only one polish that I had used before. It's the one on my middlefinger. It looks kind of pastel compared to the others, but be assured, it's absolutely not.

Pinky: unnamed beauty uk polish
Ring: OPI The "IT" Color
Middle: p2 notice me
Pointer: depend 124
Thumb: MNY 343

I wish there were more names, not only numbers. It's so hard to picture a polish just by some number.

The two yellow polishes were kind of sheer, but the beauty UK build nicely... not the OPI though. I think I did 5 coats to achieve the kind of opacity I was looking for. It turned out way more orange than it looks in the bottle too. I knew though, because I swatched them on a piece of paper beforehand. The OPI was very slow drying and of course, I smudged it.

The two yellow's glow very nicely in direct sunlight though, don't you think?

The two orange shades were what I expected. Three coats for the p2, two for the depend. I don't own many depend polishes, but the few I have are really opaque. I just wish the bottles were a bit bigger...

The orange on my thumb was a bit of a surprise too. Just like the OPI, it turned out way darker than it looks in the bottle. It's bordering to a light red in my opinion. I do like the shade though. It's a shame that MNY is no longer available in Germany. Can you still buy it somewhere else in Europe? That would be interesting.

That's it for my Summer Ombre. It was fun to do and I can see why people like ombre manis. For me, it is probably a little too undemanding. My colleagues even commented that this was a very unusual mani for me, haha. I like gradients better, so I'll stick with those when I don't feel like painting or sticking loads of pearls and rhinestones to my nails. ;)

Samstag, 14. Juli 2012

essence - Oh My Glitter!

Hi everyone,

this week, while I was killing some time until I met one of my former flatmates, I spotted the new essence color&go nail polish range. I was both delighted and displeased by this. Delighted, of course, because it's always great to see new polishes... displeased, because this meant that I had missed the clearance sale. Boo.

Anyway, I got myself two of the new polishes. One of them, I wore the next day and I want to show you a few swatches. This new shade is called Oh My Glitter!. It's a pretty purple, quite bright, infused with tiny pink and blue flecks. In the store the pink looked rather orange to me and it still did in certain lighting, but it really is pink. No way I could have stopped myself from buying this one. It's purple and has flecks after all.

Oh My Glitter! is a little sheer, so I'm wearing three thin coats here. Maybe I was a little bit too quick with my application, but with the first two coats I had some dragging issues that smoothed out with the third.

Drying time itself was not bad. I have to compare, but it might be a little faster than the previous formula. I took my pictures right after painting my nails too catch the last rays of sunlight for the day. I often manage to smudge my pinky while taking pictures, but when I went outside it was apparently dry enough for this not to happen this time.

I tried to catch the pink shimmer, but it is hard with my camera. The macro is just not the best. The blue is impossible to photograph, I believe, it's even hard to see with bare eyes. But it is there and gives some depth to the polish.

As always, the caps are supposed to show you how the polish looks like. On the first picture you can see the pink shimmer on the cap and that's how the polish actually looks like. It's no unique shade, but a pretty one.

With the new range of nail polishes, essence also introduced a new bottle shape. Each bottle now contains 8ml instead of the former 5ml. I'm not sure I like this new shape... I found it a bit difficult to hold while taking pictures, but I might get used to that. The bottle is kind of cute though.

There's one more novelty regarding the new range - a new brush. I never thought the old one was bad, but it sure was different than all the wide brushes that we recently see. essence decided they need a new brush too, so here it is.

It's actually two small brushes positioned close together to form their new professional brush. It does capture more polish than the old one, but it is much bigger, so that's to be expected. I can finish one coat on most of my nails with two brush strokes, but I think that you easily get too much polish on the brush. If that happens you do even more strokes to get it off. Not so great. But I had the same problem with the new Catrice brushes and quickly got a hang of how to deal with it.

All in all, the new range is nice, but there are not as many new shades that wowed me as last time. It's bright and colorful, loads of polishes that seem perfect for summer - if there was summer here. I'm a bit confused whether this is their fall/winter range or not. For my taste, it is way to bright to be such. We will see. Maybe there will be so many LE's or TE's this fall/winter that you won't even notice the core range to be too colorful!? No idea.

What do you think? Have you tried some of the new polishes by chance? Do you like the new bottle shape?

Montag, 9. Juli 2012

essence - forget-me-not plus glitter

Hi everyone!

Remember when I wrote that my router died and I didn't have any access to the internet? That's when I was going through my pictures and worked on a few of my oldies to finally publish them. Today, I want to show you one of those manicures... basically from the vault, because I don't even remember when I did this manicure. March, maybe?

Anyway, I remember that I picked a polish from my growing stash of untrieds: essence forget-me-not from last year's spring collection. At first I wasn't very fond of the collection, except for the yellow (love it!), but I ended up getting the whole collection later on. Around Christmas I also bought a lot of glitters that were just as "untried". So here's a combination of forget-me-not with an iridiscent glitter.

The glitter is basically white but depending on the light it looks lilac or teal. I though why not try it over a purple polish. The pictures actually don't do it any justice. It looked awesome, though I have to practice the application of loose glitters like that. My pinky got a bit overloaded, hehe.

I remember that this mani made me think of mermaids a lot. Probably because the glitters looked like fish scales. I need to see if these glitters are melting in polish or not. They might be nice to franken.

And one more... a somewhat unfocused close-up, just because it looked so sparkly.

That's it for today~

Sonntag, 8. Juli 2012

The Lazy Days of Summer 1: Beach Themed

Hi there~

I decided that I'm going to do a summer challenge. And because I liked the open timeframe from my last challenge, I decided on the so-called Lazy Days of Summer challenge, actually created my the same ladies that created the Spring Challenge. I just hope I'll be able to complete it faster than the Spring Challenge, hehe.

Here's a chart of the different themes I'll be working on in the next few weeks.

Well, today I want to show you my first mani for this challenge, supposedly be beach themed. I'm not a hundred percent happy with it. Mostly because I had this idea, but I just wouldn't work out on my nubbins anymore. I downgraded it a lot, placing only one real shell on my nails. Maybe I'll try again, when my nails are back to "normal".

When I think of the beach, I think of shells. I used to collect bags full of all kinds of shells with my sisters when we were kids. I wonder if they are still around at home... So that's basically where my idea came from.

My base for this mani is a franken I made from clear polish, a white polish with subtle shimmer and some of my Zoeva eyeshadow pigments. I'm not doing a lot of extensive eye make-ups lately, so I put them to better use that way. On top of two coats of that unnamed franken, I dabbed a blue holographic polish I won in a giveaway last year. It's by a Japanese company and apparently discontinued.

Next, I took out the crushed shells I bought a few weeks ago. I had bought blue and natural ones. I placed the blue shells on top of the holo and a few natural colored ones near the bottom. Next, I applied a generous coat of essence BTGN Top Sealer to "glue" all of that together and added a few rhinestones and half pears while it was still wet.

On my thumb, I also added a mini shell. It was really pointy and I removed it before going to work. I think it would have been too dangerous, hehe. I had planned to use more of them and bigger half pearls too, but it looked really awkward on my tiny nails. I think it's still too big on my thumb...

And because I actually wanted to capture my franken on its own...

What do you think?

And I'm sooo getting myself a lightbox...

Please take a look at what the other wonderful ladies have been doing so far:

Donnerstag, 5. Juli 2012

Spring Challenge 14: Retro Roses

Hi everyone~

Today I want to show you my last design for the Spring Challenge! The *final* one! Yay~

Well, this one was probably the easiest design. Not because it was easy to paint, but because I knew what I wanted to do for weeks. I saw these retro designs in nail magazines this spring and really wanted to do one. So why not do one for the freestyle design No. 14!?

I started out with Kiko 389 Mint Milk as my base color. Mint Milk is a gorgeous light turquoise creme and I understand very well why so many other polish enthusiasts love this polish. It's opaque in two coats and applies like a dream. It also dries to a very glossy finish.

When my base was dry, I painted the white stripes using an essence tip painter. I had almost forgotten about my tip painters... they are actually quite handy at times, haha. Afterwards, I picked another Kiko polish, 377 Apple Blossom. It's a dusty rose creme that appears to be a bit more sheer than Mint Milk. I haven't worn it solo yet. I just dabbed it onto my nails randomly. Next, I picked the only elf polish in my collection, unnamed it is, but a nice darkened pink that looked great with Apple Blossom. I used this one and a dotting tool to paint the roses. It's just half moon shapes going from the center of the blossom to the outside.

Lastly, for the leaves I used essence A Hint of Mint (lots of Mint going on...) and OPI Jade is the new Black. Using the very same dotting tool, I added little triangles where I wanted my leaves. One coat of essence BTGN Top Sealer to make it all glossy and it was done.

I finished the design about half an hour before I went to work and took my pictures when I came back. That's why there is a bit of tipwear. I loved this design and wore it for a week straight! I only took it off, because my left hand nails decided to break. I'm still very sad about that. I just did my nails again and there's so little space to paint on! I guess I have to change my plans for the Summer Challenge a bit. Oh well.

That's it for the Spring Challenge! I was doing this about 6 weeks longer than I had anticipated, but I'm glad I pulled through. I didn't want to give up, hehe. I'm planning on continuing with the Summer challenge created by the lovely ladies that did the Spring Challenge with me. There are some great themes to do!

What do you think of my final Spring design? Have you used any of these Kiko polishes?

Mittwoch, 4. Juli 2012

Priti NYC - Queen Victoria (Swatch)

Hi everyone~

I hope everyone is doing great today! I know it's a special day for a lot of people overseas, so I hope you're having fun today!

Well, no america-themed mani from me, but I'd love to show you a polish I bought a while ago, when the brand was on sale at Zalando. The brand is usually a bit too pricy for my taste, but should it be on sale again I'd definitely consider buying a few more shades. My experience with Priti NYC has been quite good so far.

The polish I want to show you is called Queen Victoria and as far as I know it's from their core line of polishes. The brand is doing so many limited editions, it's kind of hard to track them all ^^;

Queen Victoria is a gorgeous red jelly polish packed with pink and gold micro glitter. It looks very juicy! When I first wore this polish, it wasn't exactly the time for strawberries yet, but it made me crave some. Doesn't it look like fresh made strawberry jam!?

This is two coats and it could have used a third to erase every last trace of visible nail line. I'm not *that* picky about a hint of visible nail line though. The first coat goes on a bit streaky and very pink tinted, but with the second coat it's definitely red.

I got a lot of compliments when I wore Queen Victoria. I didn't even do any nail art, but people still kept commenting. I rarely wear red, but this one is awesome. It might even be my favorite red. I'm wearing it on my toes right now~ It's definitely an eyecatcher!

Drying time is nothing special, not very fast, but not exactly slow either. It dries very glossy, but I love the extra shine my beloved essence BTGN Top Sealer adds, so one coat of that.

Lastly, a bottle shot to show you the micro glitter suspended in the red jelly base.

I love this polish... I'm so glad I got it, even though it took me forever to finally wear it.

On a sidenote... I really like my nails on these pictures. I'm sad right now. Two of my left hand nails broke yesterday and I'm back to total nubbins. I don't remember when my nails where so short that there's no visible nail line... must have been ages ago. I hate the look. ;-(

Grow, nails, grow! Faster!

Montag, 2. Juli 2012

Spring Challenge 13: The Paper Gal (Newspaper Transfer)

I really don't know what's going on lately, but bad things keep happening again. First, my notebook died on me, so I had to get myself a new one. A day later I was diagnosed with a dead tooth thanks to the dental braces I wore until about a year ago. More money gone. And friday my router died too, so I had a weekend with no internet. That was probably the worst. I'm using an old one for now, but it's not working properly, so I'll probably have to spend some more money to get myself a new router. Just why are those things always happening at the same time!?

Well, I used my offline time to work on the many pictures that are still sitting in my blog folder. So today, I present my take on the 13th take of the Spring Challenge. The theme was pretty open. It just had to include a newspaper transfer.

I didn't really think this one would be a problem, because I have done newspaper transfers before and it worked just fine. Not this time though. Just like a lot of other participants in this challenge I was sitting on this mani for hours, trying to make the transfer work.

I had seen a mani before that looked pretty similar to what I did here, but it was some kind of lace sticker. When I saw it, I had the idea to do a use newspaper here instead of the the patterned lace sticker. In theory not even a difficult design. In theory...

I started with two coats of Color Club Little Miss Paris. Then, I taped off a chevron, to create the french using Kleancolor Holo Pink. When that was dry, my misery began. The plan was cutting thin lines from a newspaper and transfering it along the french edges. But it wouldn't work. I tried different alcohols (rubbing + vodka), all kinds of newspaper, dipping the newspaper in the alcohol, dipping my nail into the alcohol and then putting the newspaper on my nails. All I did was smudge the pink polish.

I noticed that the newspaper would only transfer slightly on the pink holo, so I started to wonder if my nail polish may be too smooth!? Then, I had an idea that proved successful at last. When essence changed their range of goods this spring, they started selling a base coat called studio nails 24/7 nail base. The interesting thing about this base coat is the fact that it is drying to a velvety finish providing grip to any nail polish. So along the inner edge of my french, I applied a thin stripe of this basecoat... on top of Little Miss Paris, let that dry and then tried to transfer my newspaper again.

...and it worked! Still not as well as the last time, but something was finally happening. After I had transfered newspaper to all ten nails, I painted the white lace design around it and finished the whole thing with a generous layer of my favorite BTGN Top Sealer. I placed a few rhinestones while it was drying.

I'm a bit embarassed about my lace design.... and how it is inconsistent. But I have to admit that I was so fed up with painting my nails when I finally got to the stage of painting the lace. The transfer on my right hand turned out a bit better in my opinion, so here's a rare picture of my right hand. The design looks better on the longer nails on my left hand, but you can tell that there's a newspaper transfer on my right.

I think in about a week I can finally take of the annoying gel on my left hand and cut them down. I can now see the broken edge from underneath. Yay. I'm still surprised that I didn't experience any liftings...

One more design and it's time for a few summery designs~ Still waiting for the summer to arrive here though... :(
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...