Creative musings in bright colors

Posts tagged ‘ILNP’

Medusa

This manicure was inspired by a stamping plate. I was sent plate Artist L005 to review from the Born Pretty store, and it is a weird plate! Typically Born Pretty lets me chose my own items to review, but this round they sent plates unprompted. And what they sent me was NOT my typical style! This plate has a lot of odd semi-people (bodies with plants as heads, tears, barbed wire…) honestly, very little that I would chose to wear and almost nothing that I think would be appropriate to wear to the hospital! And then I found Medusa.

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I have been wanting to do a Medusa-inspired manicure for years. I adore Greek mythology, but faces are incredibly difficult! This face works beautifully. The plate is perfectly etched and every detail picked up nicely (I do wish I liked the patterns more!), making it quite easy to make an advanced stamping decal. The other snake patterns came from other plates, and honestly don’t pick up as well! Go figure.

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Colors:
~ Green shimmer: Great Lakes – O R’lyeh?
~ Gold glitter: ILNP – Sparks May Fly
~ Black: Sinful Colors – Black on Black
~ Red: OPI – All I Want for Christmas (is OPI)
~ Nude: CND – Cashmere Wrap
~ Stamps: Born Pretty – Artist L005, Whats Up Nails – B025, Moyra – 32 Nature

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I spent longer than I strictly needed to picking what base to use as the background for Medusa’s face. The green was an easy pick, I adore R’lyeh! If you want to challenge yourself to figure out what on earth to do with this stamping plate, you can find it for $3.99 here. Enjoy!

Rainbow Fronds

I have no idea what I was going for here! The Overprint stamping series by Born Pretty has lots of awesome layered stamps, and I wanted to use the one that looked like a frond. It has a version where you can cover either the middle part of the tips of the leaves, and I wanted to fiddle with it!

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I ended up using a bunch of neon polishes (don’t ask me which, I don’t remember) and layering them over each other in sets of pink, orange, yellow, and purple. I decided, somehow, that the end result wasn’t exciting enough, so I added more fronds to the rims of my nails. The end result is interesting? But super weird!

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The base color is Reminisce by ILNP, although with how much I have covered it up,  you can hardly see the shift! The stamping plate is Overprint L002 from the Born Pretty Store.

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I really don’t know you guys. This is a weird one, even for me! Also, sorry. I have completely lost track of days and obviously meant to post this yesterday!

Blossoms on Blue

If I am being completely honest, I do not like this manicure. The blue polish was just a tad too sheer to totally cover the beautiful pink glittery base, which made the whole design look shimmery. I wish the blue had remained creme! Oh well. Its a fun stamp anyway.

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Colors:
~ Pink glitter: ILNP – Rosewater
~ Blue: Zoya – Ryan
~ Stamp: MoYou – Porcelain 01

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Only two photos today because by the time the sun came out I had enough tip wear that the photos are not fit for consumption! Oops :-p Hope you enjoyed anyway!

Sea Storm

My birthday is the end of this week! It is also the first day of my end-of-intern-year-break. It is going to be amazing to actually be doing my speciality after the end of this month. Regardless, I decided to celebrate by posting a week of some of my more favorite recent manicures! Starting with this one.

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In addition to looking like fancy lightening, this mani showcases a fantastic base color! What you see here are three thin coats of Narrow Sea by Illyrian from lat years March PPP. Yes, I wore these almost a year a go and never posted them. I was saving them for something special, because omg I love this color. I honestly could have gotten away with two coats of the polish, but I wanted more shimmer! My only complaint, and it is a tiny one, is that the polish is a bit thicker than I expected, but leveled well regardless.

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To get the nail art I dabbed on some white and covered it with a dark grey-green and grey-purple to make the clouds and surf, and freehanded some lightning strikes! I wanted them to glow, so I added some shimmery polish. I am so happy with how this came out!

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Colors:
~ Dark teal shimmer: Illyrian – Narrow Sea
~ White: LA Girl – White On
~ Dark grey-green: Zoya – Evvie
~ Dark grey-purple: Sinful Colors – Muse
~ Holo shimmer: ILNP – Rosewater

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That’s it for today. Stay tuned for more of my favorite manis on Wednesday and Friday. Hope you enjoyed!

Sunset Wheat

I’m back! I never really left…but I did move! The new house is utterly incredible and farrr larger than we need (there are 5 bedrooms, 5!! And 8 fireplaces. Who needs 8 fireplaces?). Anyway, I only finally unpacked the nail polish two days ago, so I have been stuck working with 8 polishes for almost a month! You will see a lot of rainbow cremes coming up. This one is from the vault, I just didn’t get around to editing it before the move! This will be a theme. Regardless, sorry for disappearing on everyone for a month!

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This mani was fun! A gradient, a stamp, and some fireflies! Its a weird sideways take on that famous bit of nail art by Chalkboardnails…although honestly they look very little alike. Of course, I ended up ripping the back of my middle finger open, so you guys also get the beautiful view of a bandaid :-p

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Colors:
~ Pink: Essie – Sunday Funday
~ Yellow: Stamping polish
~ Shimmer: ILNP – The Magician
~ Black: Sinful Colors – Black on Black
~ Purple jelly: Zoya – Katherine
~ Purple: Zoya – Margo
~ Stamp: BPX – L018

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Hope you enjoyed! And I will do my darndest to keep this blog updated. I have a whole lot of unshared manicures, but my time is getting tight! Although if anyone knows where to get decent (and cheap) antique furniture in St Louis I would be thrilled!

Green Crossing

Super simple and super fast. This is one of the quasi-Christmas themed manicures I actually did over the holiday break. I more or less only took reds and greens with me, with a few stamping plates. I decided to do a tone-on-tone manicure using the wonderful opacity of every A England polish, and one of my favorite (if underused) dark green holos, Ski Lodge.

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This whole manicure took less than an hour, and it was mostly waiting for Ski Lodge to dry before I could stamp. The design ended up being somewhat subtle, but since the nails were a vibrant shade of forest green, they were themselves far from subtle!

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Colors:
~ Dark green holo: ILNP – Ski Lodge
~ Green holo: A England – Dragon
~ Stamp: Whats Up Nails – B015

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Anyway, that’s all for today! I returned from my trip to Iceland (!!!) yesterday evening (assuming the flight wasn’t somehow messed up), and normal posting should resume Wednesday.

Interlocking Chevrons

I love the concept behind this nail art, but I’m honestly not sure I love the execution? I think this design is busy enough that it would work better as an accent nail and not a full mani. So, just pick one or two nails and stare at them I guess!

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This mani was time-consuming because instead of using striping tape I used stamps and freehand to make everything. Basically, I stamped the initial gold triangle at my cuticle with Penny Talk and then filled in the design (which was hollow) with Juliette. Once that was top coated and dried, I did the rest. I stamped with a black creme polish the black chevrons, and then the rose gold chevron again (each was an individual stamp…so there are 4 stamps on each nail except my thumb which was 6). I then colored in the black stamps with Storm, and did my best to spare the crossing rose gold. I could have just stamped with Penny Talk after the black was all dry, but that would be ANOTHER layer of top coat and drying and I was feeling lazy. So I colored around it :-p….it probably took longer anyway.

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Colors:
~ Nude: piCture pOlish – Cherish
~ Rose gold metallic: Essie – Penny Talk
~ Gold glitter: ILNP – Juliette
~ Black: Sinful Colors – Black on Black
~ Black with holo: Zoya – Storm
~ Stamp: Moyra – 60 Cuts

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Again, needlessly complicated, but in the end kinda cool? I’ve been back on a bit of a geometric kick recently. I wish I had time for some freehand, I’ve been feeling inspired! That’s all for today, for Friday we get back to colors and some flowers! Hope you enjoyed 🙂

Pink Bricks in a Teal Wall

I don’t know where I was going with this mani, or why it makes me think of Pink Floyd, but here we are! Not another neon brick in the wall. Of course, in this particular scenario the bricks are truly pink and the grout is teal.

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This mani was a bit of a mess. I started with a teal base, and then stamped a pink gradient over it. However, the pink did not come out as brightly as I wanted (in retrospect I should have used white first) so I stamped the same gradient again to brighten the color. Which worked…but since I used a different part of the stamp and frequently a different orientation on each nail, getting the same gradient was really difficult! I then decided it wasn’t pink enough so I added some Magician free-handed over the pink. So now there is also glitter.

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Colors:
~ Teal: Emily de Molly – Glee Ridden
~ Pink: Revlon – Bubbly
~ Dark pink: Stamping polish
~ Pink shimmer topper: ILNP – The Magician
~ Stamp: Whats Up Nails – B015

In the end I wish I had just used striping tape. Generally that would take longer, but with how much time I spent on these I doubt it! I also messed up my thumb, I decided to add bright pink dots for no apparent reason. So you don’t get to see much of my poor weird-looking thumb.

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Today is also a sad day, because my husband and I finally put in an offer for a (wonderful) house, and someone out-competed us (buy paying in cash, which is remarkable). I am sad! It had a perfect little nail art room and everything.

Marching Copper Trees

To be fair, when I painted these (well, stamped them) it was a few weeks out from Christmas. I always thought this particular stamp looked rather like christmas trees if you only used half of it! Otherwise it looks like stylized stalactites and stalagmites.

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Of course, any manicure using an awesome mutlichrome and a rose gold stamping polish is going to look pretty good. This was easy to make pretty!

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Colors:
~ Red-gold multichrome: ILNP – Greatness
~ Rose gold: Essie – Penny Talk
~ Stamp: BM – XL158

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Short, sweet, and straightforward! If it helps, the reason this post is so short is that I am taking Step 3 of the medical board exam tomorrow. And Friday. Because of course it is a two day test *grumble grumble* but after this Friday I am free again!

Bolded Chevron

Honestly, my nails were too long (that never happens!) for the nail art I was trying to create here! So I improvised a bit. I think the original might be better! It also kinda looks like one chevron (the black one) was bolded in my version, so voila, title!

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The design was inspired by Penelope Luz, but her version is beautifully minimalist. Mine has more color. And glitter.

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Colors:
~ Nude holo: Picture Polish – Cherish
~ Silver holo: Color Club – Harp On It
~ Silver holo with orange shimmer: ILNP – Fired Up
~ Pink: Revlon – Bubbly
~ Stamp: Moyra 60 – Cuts

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I don’t know, just go with it! Designs get more colorful (as usual) next week 🙂

Teal and Silver Mishmash

Sorry that the posts this week have been late/only a few photos, I’ve been sick! My husband it a pediatrician which means the kiddos give him lots of bugs. This time they gave him a respiratory virus and he had the courtesy to pass it on to me :-/ first time I’ve been sent home early from the hospital!

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Anyway, on to nail art! This design was loosely inspired by @gabbysnailart. I love the colors but I personally wanted more glitter. Of course, the glitter is a LOT harder to remove than creme polish, but it is so sparkly! I don’t know what I thought I was doing stamping with Rosewater and then trying to color over the stamp, but here we are!

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Colors:
~ Teal: Emily de Molly – Glee Ridden
~ Silvery-pink holo: ILNP – Rosewater
~ Coarse holo glitter: FUN Lacquer – 24 Karat Diamond
~ Stamps: Whats Up Nails – B015, Moyra – 60 Cuts

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Hope you enjoyed (despite the late post)! If I’m lucky today will be the last day I feel terrible and my posts will get longer.

Top 10 Polishes of 2018

Time for a top 10 post! Every year I do two of them: my favorite 10 new polishes of that year (some of which will be new to me but have existed for a while, and this year about half of which are from the Polish Pickup Pack because that is where I keep getting new polish), and a second post that is my top 10 favorite nail art from this blog in 2018! I always look forward to other bloggers top 10s as well, so I know which polishes to buy! Here we go:

10. Zoya – Isadora
I think this is the only Zoya polish on the list, but it was close between this and Kelsey (a bright pink that I have used a bunch in nail art but only once by itself) but really I felt that I wanted to reward Zoya for making more beautiful metallics. I own a lot of purple metallics, and Isadora is just so pretty!
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9. Polished for Days – From the Land of Oz
I have worn this polish probably 4 times since I got it from the Polish Pickup Pack, which given just how many polishes I own is really impressive! It is purple, blue, teal, and made of flakies, just how I like it! The colors and finish comes together nicely, and Polished for Days appears to make the best flakie suspension polishes. I think off all the new brands I discovered this year, PfD might be my favorite! I keep stalking their website waiting for a sale :-p
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8. Ever After – Playing with Fire
This is another find from Polish Pickup, and it is a beauty. I wish I wasn’t stuck in residency so that I could wear this more frequently! I had been searching for a black-with-rainbows and had been disappointed in holo (because it never looks as rainbow as I’d like in a black base), glitter (too darn hard to remove), and settled on flakies…and this is just perfect. Technically the base is a very dark blue but I just cannot get over the combination of flakies. It is a perfect rainbow in a bottle.
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7. Painted Polish – Just One Look
Is this prettier than #8 and #9 on my list? No. But is it cool looking AND can I wear it to the hospital? Yes. So this pale periwinkle with medium and small holo glitters takes 7th place. This is yet another Polish Pickup shade (are you guys sensing a theme here?) but I know other brands make similar colors and finishes. I happen to like it because it is a stunning color, work appropriate, and glittery to boot!
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6. ILNP – Downpour
This polish. I got 4 new dark blue/teal holographic polishes this year and this one takes the cake. I have been wearing this on my toes since I got it and I regret nothing. Downpour has it all: dark blue, holo shards and glitters, and a metallic finish that makes it glow. That inner glow is really what sets it apart from the other of my new blue holos. I was on the fence when I first received it, but it has quickly grown to be the blue I reach for! The only caveat is that it takes 3 coats rather than 2.
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5. ILNP – Fired Up
The next on the list is also an ILNP polish, this time Fired Up. Last year, Rosewater made my top 10, and Fired Up is the orange sister to Rosewaters pink. I love them both! This polish is just so darn glittery and shimmery, but somehow still wearable. It just makes me happy.
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4. CbL – Frohe Feiertage!
If we are being honest Frohe Feiertage! and Fired Up are very similar. The difference is Frohe Feiertage! has a gold base and is a tad more subtle (aka more wearable in the hospital). I have worn this polish 3-4 times as well. It was my first (and thus far only) CbL but I can see why everyone loves the finish on these polishes! It was also a Polish Pickup buy.
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3. Born Pretty – Astral Realm
I think this is the first time a Born Pretty polish has made my top 10 list? And in the top 3 at that! This is a polish I was sent to review and I fell completely in love. I have ok luck with magnetic polishes, and had been lusting after a magnetic multichrome when I got this. And it just. Works. Its amazing. Even my old many-straight-parallel-lines magnet, which usually looks like a blurry mess, worked like a charm. Yes, this polish requires a black base. Yes it is in a small bottle. No I don’t care, if all magnetics were all this pretty I would never buy anything else!
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2. Emily de Molly – Traverse the Skies
I meant to put this polish on the top 10 LAST year but forgot that I hadn’t posted the nail art it went with! Regardless, this polish is absolutely stunning and has become my platonic ideal of what a shimmer with flakie shards should look like. I love it. If you don’t own this polish and like blue, purple, silver, or just pretty looking nails in general, go buy it. You won’t regret it.
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1. Polished for Days – Grey Opal
This polish made #1 by dint of being stunning, elegant, work-appropriate, and easy to remove despite its flakie burden. Kudos to Polished for Days! Unfortunately this beauty was another Polish Pickup special, but PfD makes a lot of similarly finished and colored polishes on their website. This polish was opaque in two coats, had perfect control on the brush, and was just overall wonderful to work with and wear.
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Thats my top 10 for the year! Moral: Polished for Days is amazing, join the Polish Pickup Pack if you haven’t already, and I am really into nude shimmers and blurples this year! What were your favorite polishes this year that I should invest in?

Swirling Flakes

Snowflakes! More snowflakes! Snowflakes on a windy background! I decided I wanted more color so on top of Downpour (the dark blue) I dry marbled some Party Favor (teal), then stamped with Yummy (lighter blue) before stamping with silver.

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Unfortunately, despite my best efforts, for some reason most of the photos came out blurry. So today there are only a few photos (although 3 does tend to be normal for me now) and I did my best to pick in-focus ones!

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Colors:
~ Dark blue holo: ILNP – Downpour
~ Dark teal holo: ILNP – Party Favor
~ Blue: Zoya – Yummy
~ Silver: A England – Excalibur (Renaissance)
~ Stamps: BM – XL213, 323, BP – 185

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Maybe I should have posted something a bit more Christmas-y today, but all my manis got pushed back a day, so my official christmas mani will go up on Wednesday and holiday nails will continue through Friday. Oops! Enjoy anyway :-p

Interlocking Greatness

Yes, it is a pun off the name of the polish, yes I am a goofball! Also, today formally begins the series of holiday-appropriate nail art. This one was painted during autumn but is honestly more red/green than orange/green which was the initial intent!

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Anyway, this is a very very simple manicure (as many are during things like residency). Just a polish and a stamp. Now, the polish happens to be a multichrome, and the stamp is a holo. Honestly, I didn’t think this color combo would work that well, but Dragon stamps amazingly well (I just need to acknowledge that A England makes polishes that stamp like magic).

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Colors:
~ Copper/purple multichrome: ILNP – Greatness
~ Green: A England – Dragon
~ Stamp: EdM – 17

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That’s it for today! Hope you enjoyed, and stay tuned for progressively more snow-themed and Christmas manis! My one hanukah mani is getting punted to next year :-p

Purple and Gold Galaxies

This mani tried so hard, but ultimately fell to the age-old adage: do not stamp over glitter with glitter (use a creme or a metallic). I started with a purple/gold multichrome but I was working too fast and my nails bubbled! So obviously I had to make a galaxy…but every time I tried to sponge on a new color I ended up hating it! I ended up just covering all the other sponged work with a dark purple glitter and some gold. Oh well!

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As mentioned above, I also wish I hadn’t stamped with a glitter. Metallics just work much better. I was trying to make everything sparkly but the end result is that it is difficult to see the designs! I’ll need to re-use this stamp again soon, it is super cool.

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Colors:
~ Purple/gold multichrome: ILNP – Masquerade
~ Grey with gold shimmer: Zoya – Yuna
~ Purple creme: Zoya – Margo
~ Purple glitter: Zoya – Valerie
~ Chunky gold glitter: OPI – All Sparkly and Gold
~ Gold glitter: Sally Hansen – Go for Gold
~ Stamp: BM – XL213

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Every time I work with Valerie I wish I used it more, but I am always afraid to! Zoya keeps discontinuing their prettiest polish. Zoya: MORE GLITTERS! YOUR GLITTERS ARE GREAT! Anyway…hope you enjoyed! And let the moral be do not stamp with glitter over a glittery base!

Pumpkins and Webs

Happy almost-halloween! This year my husband and I ended up at two different pumpkin carving events, so now we have four pumpkins. Which is double our previous yearly count of pumpkins. I carved a set: a dragon and a castle. My husband carved a pokemon (because of course he did)…and a pumpkin. Into his pumpkin. He is an absolute dork!

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Anyway, I have a bunch of fall manis lined up, but I only did one halloween manicure this year! I kinda forgot that October meant Halloween. Oops. I’ll do better next year! This year’s halloween mani is decided to stamping jack-o-lanterns. I received another plate to review from the Born Pretty Store (which was thankfully well-etched) and went to town! Unfortunately, the dark orange I used for the pumpkins is more a jelly than a cream, but I still got away with single-pass stamping on some nails (thumb and ring finger). That said, I am not surprised I had to double stamp, I need to stop using glitter polish bases! But when trying to pick a base color my head just went ‘GOOOOLD’ so here we are!

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Colors:
~ Gold: ILNP – Fame
~ Dark orange: Essie – Playing Koi
~ Yellow: WOW – #301
~ Bright orange: Nubar – Hot Orange
~ Black: Sinful Colors – Black on Black
~ Stamp: BP – Halloween – L004

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Hope you enjoyed! And I hope everyone gets lots of candy and tasty treats. If you want to pick up this pumpkin and web-decked plate, head over to the Born Pretty Store where you can find it on sale for $2.99.

Pink Pastiche

Is this really pastiche? Not so much. A lot of my nail art apes that of other artists that I’ve seen and liked…this was sort of a general “I like things that are somewhat pastel and look like watercolor and flowers” and I tried to make it happen!

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It turns out, of course, that I also like things that glitter. The end result of this mani was actually pretty fun, but I just kept adding more things! Lines and more lines and dots…In the end I wish I had used a lighter silver holo base for my accent nail, but I love the pink shine to Rosewater!

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Colors:
~ Silver pink holo: ILNP – Rosewater
~ White: Sinful Colors – Snow me White
~ Pastel pink: Wet n’ Wild – Tickled Pink
~ Pink: Sinful Colors – Pink Forever
~ Neon pink: Revlon – Bubbly
~ Neon coral: L’oreal – Orange you Jealous?
~ Stamps: What’s Up Nails – B015, Lina Make Your Mark – 02

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That’s it for now! Hope you enjoyed this oddly pink interlude!

Rungs

This mani ended up boring and almost ugly. I like the base polish a lot but every time I try to come up with some color to use over it, I turn to dark purple-grey or gold! And for some reason most of the designs end up wonky looking.

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I don’t know why I picked this stamp (which seems to be a trend this week) but it ended up looking like rungs on a ladder or maybe the straps on a fancy jacket? If fancy jackets came in murky purple tones? I don’t know!

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Colors:
~ Purple-grey: ILNP – Long Walks
~ Dark purple-grey: Sinful Colors – Muse
~ Gold: Sally Hansen – Go for Gold
~ Stamp: EdM – 01

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Anyway, leaving all this aside, the 31 Day Challenge starts this weekend! I am not going to be participating every day because I don’t have enough manis backlogged and I certainly don’t have enough time to paint and edit that much, but I am going to keep to posting three times a week and matching my nails of the day to that days prompt! I think there will be a few where I jump a day forward or backwards, but I should have most of them sorted out. I love seeing what everyone puts together for the #31DC2018!

Serpentine

This manicure makes me happy and sad, which is unusual for something as simple as nail art! But looking at these, as much as I hate my nail length, I like how they ended up!

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Once they were done, they reminded me of a stone so I went looking for something appropriate on the internet. Apparently, serpentine is a deep green stone with flecks of color and beige-gold veins. Perfect! I wish I could say I was TRYING to make a pretty rock, but I was mostly just having fun with flakies and stamps.

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I wasn’t initially going to post these because I broke three nails (omg so sad) and my nails are painfully short and slightly misshapen as a result. However, I liked how the design came out, so I am posting them anyway! Maybe those of you with short nails will find inspiration.

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Colors:
~ Dark green holo: ILNP – Ski Lodge
~ Rainbow flakies: piCture pOlish – Festival
~ Gold: Essie – Good as Gold
~ Stamp: Lina – Make Your Mark 02

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That’s it for today! Hope the middle of the week isn’t terrible for anyone else (I am on call today so I left at 6:30am and likely won’t be home until 11pm), but oh well!

Rose Gold Rows

This is a super complicated mani, but I kinda love it. I was sent some very tiny rose gold caviar beads to review from the Born Pretty Store, and I went to town with them!

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Most of my caviar beads are what I would consider standard size…which is easily twice the size of these ones. Look at how many pretty rows are on my middle finger! I ended up mix-and-matching with a fishtail, some other studs, and basic diagonals. I had seen a similar mani online, but I didn’t want to use a black base so I settled on a very dark blue with subtle gold shimmer 🙂

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Colors:
~ Dark blue: Zoya – Blake
~ Rose gold metallic: Essie – Penny Talk
~ Rose gold glitter: ILNP – Juliette

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I have never really tried to place a bunch of studs and then surround them with caviar beads, mostly because my other caviar beads are larger, and the whole thing takes forever. That said, I did my middle finger first (well, I did the polish-only nails first, but it was the first nails with 3D elements) and since that only took 10 minutes, I went ahead and did the others with lots of tiny beads too. Success!

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If you want to pick up these tiny beads for yourself, head over to the Born Pretty Store, where you can find them for $1.79. I kinda love them, and can’t wait to figure out ways to use them now!

a london year

[or more accurately: the london years]

PSHIIIT

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