NOTD: Christmas in July

I spontaneously wanted to wear red nail polish today. Don’t ask me why because I have no idea. I have probably 20 pinks/reds but I wear them maybe once a month, but I can’t bear to part with most of them! I think red nail polish just makes me think of being a mom too much, which is a thought that terrifies me!!

So to break up the red, “Mom” feeling, I decided to do something fun. A blog I follow was doing a Christmas in July nail art contest and another was doing a season-inspired contest (I think a mish-mash of winter and summer counts!) and so I got my creative gears goin’. Here’s what I came up with:

And descriptions of my inspiration for each nail:

* The tinsel that continues to clog up the vacuum every. Single. Time.

* The glitter. Oh god, the glitter. Why does it never come off?!

* The Christmas tree you’ve been meaning to take down since January but have never quite gotten to.

* The re-gifted present that you can’t for the life of you imagine why Great Aunt Ethel thought you’d like it.

* The final credit card payment for your extravagant Christmas…just in time to start buying for this year!

This was tons of fun to do and I’m really glad I took the dive and participated. I generally don’t like Christmas-y stuff, but this was fun enough to make up for it! 😉

  • CoverGirl Cherry Brandy
  • Love & Beauty silver glitter
  • Wild n Crazy Pierre
  • NYC Bryant Park
  • ManGlaze Santorum
  • LA Colors silver striper
  • Orly Lucky Duck
  • Sally Hansen Green with Envy
  • China Glaze Twinkle Lights
  • striping tape
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NOTD: Feelin’ Peachy

Growing up a blonde girl who loved Super Mario it was only natural that my favorite Princess was Peach (AKA Princess Toadstool). Pink has never really been my color but I didn’t care, I wanted to be Princess Peach (even though it was infinitely more fun rescuing her then I imagine it could have been to be her awaiting rescue).

Isn’t she just adorable?

I wanted to try something new this time, I didn’t want just boring old French tips. Water marble tips is something I’d never seen before so I figured out how to do it all on my own! First, check out my pretty nails, then on to the tutorial!

To get water marbled French tips it’s pretty similar to doing normal water marbling. Start by painting your base color and allowing it to fully dry. I let mine sit for a couple hours but overnight would have been best, or I could have used some of my Seche Vite. Once your nails are dry, tape them up! I used French tip guides and then covered the rest of my nails and fingers with tape. I’ve found masking tape works best for me.

Next, follow this tutorial (or your favorite water marbling tutorial) but instead of dipping one nail at a time, dip your whole hand at once. Make sure your nails go in at an angle to prevent bubbles! After that you’ll end up with something that looks a bit daunting if you haven’t taped your fingers…

Imagine if you hadn’t taped up your fingers, look at all the cleanup you’d have to do! And for me I used a dark reddish color, even the small bits that got on my skin were a pain to remove without staining! So remember, boys and girls, always thoroughly tape your fingers before water marbling.

Also, if you’re using a styrofoam container to water marble in make sure that none of your polish hits the bottom or you’ll look away for a second and turn back to see this…

Yeah, that’s all water in the center there.

Once you’ve removed your tape and done any necessary cleanup you’ll be left with something like this!

As you can see from my first mani picture above I added a little crown stamp and gold lines where my French tips met my base color. I’m super happy with this!! I think I’ll have to wear pink for the first time in months just to celebrate this mani 😉

Now excuse me while I go fire up the Nintendo and play some Mario 🙂

  • Valmy 156
  • Valmy 157
  • Sally Hansen Gold Chrome
  • BM-215

NOTD: Patriotic

Today is Memorial day, and I wanted to honor the occasion with patriotic nails. I couldn’t decide which design I wanted so…I did one on each hand 🙂

Sadly, the big star spangles came off right after taking this picture….so I used little nail crystals instead! I liked the bigger ones for the official picture, though.

On my right hand I got to try the “grunge” look for the first time. I was amazed how this….

…became this!

And here’s a shot with my thumb in it (sometimes I wonder why I bother painting it, it almost never makes its way into my pictures!)

As a humorous side note, I thought it was a little bit funny that I used a Dutch nail polish (the blue, Hema) in a US patriotic manicure. It was the perfect shade, though 🙂

  • Wet n Wild Red
  • Sally Hansen Whirlwind White
  • Hema 10

NOTD: Catching up!

This weekend was so busy I didn’t have any time to update you all on my nails! Saturday was spent with my mom celebrating Mother’s Day and then Sunday was spent with my honey’s family at a really nice winery for Mother’s Day. I had lots of fun!

First off, here’s a manicure inspired by a painting my good friend Kelli did for me. It’s a character from the video game Machinarium, and my art is nowhere near as good as hers but I’m still really happy with it.

  • Hema 79
  • Zoya Kelly
  • Sally Hansen Whirlwind White
  • Wet n Wild Black Creme
  • Sally Hansen Wet Cement

Next up I did a special Mother’s Day mani on Saturday for my mom. This week’s theme is mom/mother’s day so they’re all done with her in mind!

I didn’t have a lot of time so I just removed my Machinarium art and replaced it with what was supposed to look like a tattoo banner that says “MOM”. Sorry for the blurry picture, it was so hard to even get one this “good”.

My mom is a tattoo fanatic and she’s always “bugging” me and saying I should get a tattoo…well, here it is!! I really like the idea of this mani but I don’t think I executed it very well. Next time I’ll do better, I’m sure, and there will definitely be a next time with this look!

  • Hema 79
  • Sally Hansen Whirlwind White
  • Milani Black Sketch
  • Kiss black pen

Next up is the manicure I wore for Mother’s Day. My mom picked out the color combo which ended up matching the outfit I was going to wear very nicely! Can you tell Mom’s a fan of purple? 😉 Please excuse the tip wear, my base color wears really easily and I didn’t care enough to touch up >.>

  • Runt’s Grape
  • Finger Paints Purple Palette

Finally, on to today’s mani! It’s my favorite of the ones I’ve done recently. This one is inspired by my mom’s beliefs, paganism, and symbolizes the 5 elements of Wicca. From the pinky: Earth, Fire, Air, Water, and Spirit. I’m definitely going to be wearing this one for a few days!!

  • Sally Girl Lime, Orange, Banana, Coconut
  • Wet n Wild Disturbia
  • Finger Paints Easel-y Entertained
  • Kyoti’s Nails The Hero (pinky) and Hey, Listen! (index) (working names, but keep an eye out for the whole line! Read more about them here)
  • Rainbow Honey Hoof-wrassle (ring) and A Little Kindness (middle)
  • Milani Sketch

Nail decal experiment–in spaaaace

It’s technically Saturday so now I can officially go between both themes for this week and next week. I’ve been wanting to try newspaper-style nails for a while but I don’t like how the text turns out backwards. I’d seen a few tutorials on how to do your own printed decals using a laser printer and I decided to follow this one. I have a color inkjet printer at my desk but I’ve heard that doesn’t work so I commandeered the sweetheart’s black and white laser printer.

I found an image I liked, scaled it down to 1cmx1cm to fit on my nail, and duplicated it a few times in case I messed things up. I printed it onto a page I ripped out of a magazine since I thought that might help the image slide off better. I painted 2 coats of quick-dry white and let it dry.  Then I grabbed a small cup full of 70% isopropyl alcohol, dipped my finger in it for 3 minutes, dipped my image in for a few seconds, then placed the image (face down) on my nail and pushed hard on it. I removed the paper and…..first attempt, failed 😦 But I was not deterred! I removed my polish and, since I was impatient, decided to try a different method.

With just base coat on my nail I dipped the image into the alcohol for about 5 seconds. Then I put it directly onto my nail (no nail soaking) and pressed hard, just as I had before. I pressed for about 20 seconds, then dipped my whole finger + paper into the alcohol to re-moisten it, then very slowly slid the paper off going across the nail, not straight up (think about how you’d do a temporary tattoo). SUCCESS! *confetti, balloons, glitter!*

Yay! It’s a little Wheatley!! I was excited after this, I’d proven that it was possible to print and transfer your own decals. I had one decal left so I painted my thumbnail using quick-dry white again, let it dry, and transferred the decal.

Yay!! It looked much better over a color than by itself, not surprisingly. Now, here’s the point where I started getting overzealous and decided to “make it better”. Hint: I did not make it better!! I didn’t like it being on a plain white background so I thought to myself, “self, we should fill in the background! A nice space-y blue would be good!” Well, Self was wrong. Or at least picked the wrong blue! Because….this happened.

Aah!! Abort, abort!! Ok, way too much glitter. I was able to outline Wheatley nicely, I even filled in his eye with Blue Iguana, but wow that glitter is overwhelming. Next time I’m sticking with a flat blue and then maybe some light glitter over it. Me, being the stubborn girl that I am, had to do something with my ring finger as well since the decal was a success. I started off doing just a French tip using my ridiculous blue glitter. Then I tried filling in the little tiny heart that was on the decal…this is where things went wrong, again. I didn’t fill in the heart well and I decided to just fill around Wheatley with my red to hide my mistake…this did not help things.

….Someone remind me not to attempt nail art when sleepy. I took it all off right away and went to bed, which I should have just done earlier! I’m still not sure if I should label this a success since the decals worked or a failure since I look like a glitter factory exploded on my thumb.

It was late and I was sleepy and impatient, I apologize for the poor quality pictures. I’m also sorry about the slight staining on my nails…I haven’t found an effective way to entirely remove it. Any tips are appreciated!

  • Sally Hansen Whirlwind White
  • China Glaze Ruby Pumps
  • China Glaze Blue Iguana
  • Custom franken Blue Box

NOTD: The Day of Silence

I’m almost done with week 1 of my 13-week challenge! Only 3 more months!

Friday, April 20th, is an important day for me for two reasons: first and foremost because it’s my mommy’s birthday!! We’ll be having a day of sushi, movies and manicures–you can’t beat that!

Friday is also very important to me for another reason. Friday is the Day of Silence, the day in which we acknowledge members of the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) community who have, for various reasons, been silenced, and it also protests the bullying and harassment of LGBT people and their allies (people who support equal rights for LGBT and straight/heteronormative people). I also interpret this day to honor those of the LGBT and their allies who have been killed or have killed themselves for simply being themselves and desiring equality and for not being supported. This day is honored by taking a day-long vow of silence to symbolically represent the silencing of LGBT students and their supporters.

My partner and my mother are very aware of LGBT rights and therefore I’ll still be able to celebrate my mom’s birthday without resorting to texting or using sign language, but any time I am out of the house on Friday I will be silent. I’m sure it will be strange to some for me to be silent, especially since I’ll be going to a restaurant I go to frequently, but I will be asking my mom to explain to them why I am silent. I will be wearing a purple shirt (a color I’ve seen associated with LGBT a lot, if I had a rainbow shirt I’d wear that) and a black armband in memorial of those who have been killed or who have killed themselves due to bullying and for not being accepted for who they are.

Today, tomorrow, Friday, and every day I honor those who have been victims of violence and oppression. It’s a small thing, and I’m just one person, but enough “just one person”s can change the world. Check out the NO H8 Campaign to learn more about supporting equal rights.

On a more playful note, I’ve decided to do my toes in reference to a group of characters from the new Doctor Who. They’re called The Silence and you only remember them while you see them, as soon as you don’t see them you forget them entirely. To help the Doctor and his companions remember the Silence they would write tick marks on their bodies, so I’ve done tick marks on my toes.

  • Sally Hansen Whirlwind White
  • Milani Black Sketch
  • Milani White Canvas (for touchups)
  • Generic red striper
  • China Glaze Ruby Pumps (for heart and stamping)
  • Konad special black
  • Sally Hansen Wet Cement
  • BM-202

NOTD: Matte ombre

Around the Internet “ombre” has been a recent fad. Basically you take 5 shades of a color (I chose pink/red) and do the lightest on one nail, the second lightest on the next, etc until you have the darkest color on the other side of your hand. Since I got three shades of pink from a giveaway (which you nightowls might remember from last night’s post) I figured now was a great time to try it and use up some of my pinks that I for some reason have so many of!

I also wanted to do a matte-icure since it’s been a few weeks since my last one. This mani was “nice” with a glossy topcoat but I just love it with the matte topcoat!

My pinky and ring finger were so similar in color that I took that polish off and replaced it after a few hours. Check the second photo for what it looks like now; I like it much better. I think next time I might do a pastel green to pastel or dark blue ombre!

  • Valmy 156
  • Wet n Wild Tickled Pink
  • Valmy 39
  • Wet n Wild Red
  • Valmy 157
  • Sally Hansen Whirlwind White (as a base for my ring finger in my updated mani)
  • Aziza nameless hot pink
  • Warpaint Mattify