Nail Adventures: Tropical Sparkle

Y’all, vacation is so close I can almost taste the fresh seafood that awaits me in Myrtle Beach!

This also means that it will feel like time is ticking backwards because I’m so ready for it to be here, but I digress.

The week before vacation is always a rough one: trying to get the house cleaned up, get things washed and folded, get new luggage if you need it (mine has a hole the size of a football field in it) on top of making time for a wax and a pedicure. Added is making sure work things are squared away so I can actually ENJOY vacation without having to worry about (or do!) any work.


I had to keep the nails simple for this week, because I’m up to my elbows in spring cleaning (cleaning out the closet, OMG!) but I still wanted some pretty colors.

So, what did I come up with?



So, this yellow glitter polish. This was…underwhelming. *sigh*

I didn’t realize it was so matte, and even with a shiny top coat still remained pretty flat. It does have a bit of a metallic sheen to it though. This is OPI’s Pineapples Have Peelings Too. The pink is Orly’s Hawaiian Punch, and what would a Char manicure be without a rhinestone?

You know I’ve already knocked that off. Oh, well. πŸ™‚

And now, I’m in the home stretch of my workweek. I can make it, I can!

Happy Wednesday, folks! πŸ˜€

Nail Adventures

Nail Adventures: Negative Space

I have been seeing it all over the place. Or rather, not seeing it.

Let me explain.

The manicure look du jour is the idea of negative space. A stripe, a triangle, zig zag, whatever tickles your fancy in the middle of the color of your choice. Maybe it’s an invisible French tip, maybe it’s a half moon at the base of the nail. But it’s your nail shining through, and your polish surrounds the design.

Pretty cool, huh?

I feel like every time I try to use my striping guides, I end up ruining my nails because I am too anxious to bother to wait until the base layer completely dries. Therefore, when I want to reveal the colorful striping design underneath another color, I end up with naked nail because the nail guide pulls my polish off of my nails.

I won’t have that problem this time! This look works even for the impatient because the look is in the naked nail beneath. For my first attempt, I went simple and used French manicure nail guides to add a wide sloping line in the center of my nails. Since I had a fashion show to go to yesterday (and another one tonight,) I decided to keep the colors fairly neutral;pink and a bright gold accent nail. Of course I had to do rhinestones as well.Β 

You know I have to have my dose of sparkle. πŸ™‚

The results?



I used Julep’s Lois (pale pink creme shimmer) on 8 nails, and Julep’s Sienna (bright gold metallic shimmer) on my ring fingers. I LOVE this manicure! Quick, easy, and gorgeous. For a holiday party, I could totally do this in all metallic and add the rhinestones on all 10 nails.

Sometimes negative space can be a good thing, huh? πŸ˜€

Nail Adventures

Nail Adventures and New Goodies, Part 3

I have a lot of nail products.

Stop side-eyeing me. I’m going somewhere with this! πŸ™‚

Even though I have a lot of nail products, I always love to try out companies that are new to me. Especially when they have nail gadgets I’ve never tried before.

What nail gadget, you say? A stamper!

Now, I’ve seen other nail bloggers using nail plates and I’m all…what in the world is a nail plate? Naturally, I envisioned something made of artificial nails.

That is not what it is, of course. πŸ˜€ It’s one of these:



This is by Essence. So, you put the polish onto the plate, transfer it to the stamp (usually a bit of rubber) and stamp it onto the nail. A bit advanced for me, but hey, it cost me $3. What do I have to lose? I also picked up some french manicure striping tape and some glitter (because I can NEVER have too much glitter.)

In addition to the nail goodies, I also got a new pineapple mask (great for giving a glow to dull skin), an excellent honey and oatmeal body scrub, Nyx eye pencil in Milk (great for bright eye looks), and a set of Real Techniques eye shadow brushes. Oh, yeah, and a lovely lip and cheek palette from Pop Beauty. Here’s the full haul:


Before this week’s nail look…storytime!

So, I am currently writing up this post. My computer says it is 2:03am. The picture I am about to show you is the third attempt at this nail look, but it wasn’t because I couldn’t get the design right. It’s because the supplies were being ridiculous. So, for full disclosure, these are the original tools I had slated for this look:


The idea I had was for a white pearl nail with black and pink accents. I picked up these beads (great for caviar nails) by Sally Hansen and I thought, why not use the beads as part of the accent? And with my basic design in mind, I got to work.

Once I laid down my base color, a pure white (Tini Beauty’s Cream) with a sheer pearl overlay (OPI’s Kyoto Pearl), I started to do my black french tips and hated it. The black tip on the icy white was too stark. So, I started over.

So then, I did a sheer grey base (OPI’s Skull and Glossbones) with a semi sheer pearlized silver (OPI’s Birthday Babe). Now the black french didn’t look harsh, but it stood out like I wanted. So, the next step was to take a screaming pink (Orly’s Hawaiian Punch), do a line underneath the black tip, and sprinkle pink beads on top. I also used my new nail plate, and laid a heart formed from a treble and base clef on each ring finger.

All of this worked perfectly! Yes, even the stamping! Β The problem came in when I did the top coat.


When I laid the top coat over the beads, all of the color bled off onto the brush, and so streaked onto my pearly base color. And it bleached the color of the beads from vibrant to Pepto Bismol.

😦 *sad trombone*

This isn’t an issue I’ve had with other caviar manis in the past, but I had it tonight. I basically ruined a perfect mani in one fell swoop on ALL 10 FINGERS. This is because I was chatting with the bestie as I did my nails and he wrote his paper and I wasn’t paying attention and…

Dammit, man.

So, start over again.

This time I just did a coat of Birthday Babe, did the black french tip and did a line of a darker pink (OPI’s Flashbulb Fuschia) underneath. Ring fingers were tipped in Flashbulb Fuschia (shown in pic) and dunked into Essence’s Multieffects Glitter (in Call Me Galaxy). Then there was a black line of rhinestones underneath the glitter line. The result?


Super simple, and super pretty. This is a case where third time’s the charm! And…the glitter didn’t bleed color everywhere (yay!) I would have done another stamp, but I felt like it would have been too much with the simplicity of this look. I promise to do it again and show y’all how it turns out!

Considering the time and the pop of sparkle, I’m calling this the Bright Shot In The Dark manicure.

And now, bed because I’m acting like I don’t have work later this morning.

Have a great weekend! πŸ˜€

Nail Adventures Retail Therapy Reviews Stories

Quick Hit: Valentine’s Day Nails

Did y’all miss me? πŸ˜€

I managed to get both bronchitis and laryngitis which left me with enough energy to work like a zombie then come home and pass out.

Now that’s passed, let’s get on with the nail stuff!

I don’t fool with Valentine’s Day mostly, but I do makeup for a living and I do love to experiment with different colors.


Right Hand


Left Hand

I used OPI’s Pink A Boo and Revlon’s Velvet Rope for this look, and added some pink stones for sparkle. I had to add a white base to my nails, as Pink A Boo is sheerer than I prefer. Once I got a coat of white, two coats of pink worked just fine. Then, I took my nail brushes and pens and started designing from there with Velvet Rope. This mani was a lot of fun, especially because I don’t normally do pastel pink, and I love how it turned out.

I hope y’all had a lovely Valentine’s Day or an awesome half-off candy day (Feb 15th!)

Nail Adventures