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Saturday, February 28, 2015

The Polished Bookworms: The Maze Runner Mani

Good evening!  We've gotta stop meeting like this - it's much too late in the day, our brains are tired, or maybe we have plans to do something fun.  Either way, I need to get my act together and get better at posting earlier!!

Quick post for you featuring a mani inspired by the book The Maze Runner that was this month's chosen book to read for the group The Polished Bookworms on Facebook ^_^  I actually really, really enjoyed the book - so much so that I purchased the rest in the series :D

Here is my design:


"Wicked is Good" is a key phrase in the book, and the stamped green represents the maze.  I used Colors by Llarowe's "Vincent" as the base color, used M Polish's "Bells of Ireland" for the green stamping polish, used the maze pattern from the Goblet of Fire Harry Potter HeHe stamping plate I just received today from a giveaway (thanks, Krise!!), and freehanded the words with acrylic paint.  I like how the design came out, and am happy I finally got to use my new M Polish!!  I tell you what, that is some fantastic stamping polish :)

Have you ever read the Maze Runner?  If so, what did you think?  If not, did you see the movie?  I saw the movie last night.  I kept getting antsy and saying, "But that's not what happens - grrrr." and getting all grumbly.  I've decided it's a good thing my job is not to write script adaptations from books :P

Be sure to check out the other creative designs from a few of the other members in the Polished Bookworms group!!  Have a terrific night, I'll see you tomorrow with Part 2 of the Gothic Gala Lacquers Mt. Olympus collection <3

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Friday, February 27, 2015

Gothic Gala Lacquers Mt. Olympus Collection, Part 1

***Press Sample***

Friiiiiiiiday!  W00t!!  I'm very ready for it to be the weekend.  I have a taekwondo tournament tomorrow where I will be doing a short routine with my bow staff.  I'm only a tad nervous...

But let's talk about something way more fun - new polishes from Gothic Gala Lacquers!!  She recently created her largest collection yet inspired by Greek gods, and it is simply divine!!  There are a whopping 10 polishes total, so I'll be splitting up this post over today and tomorrow so you're not overloaded with Awesome ;)  Let's start with the first polish - Aphrodite!



Mattified!

Aphrodite is a beautiful pastel metallic pink.  It is on the thinner side, so even with three coats, as shown in the pictures, you can still see some nail line.  A thin base coat of white or OPI's ridge filler should eliminate that, if it is bothersome to you :)

Next up is Ares:




Ares is a gorgeous deep metallic purple that has a gorgeous subtle golden shimmer in certain lighting.

Here is Athena:




Athena is a beautiful dusty light blue/grey metallic that, to be honest, looks incredible matted!!!

This one is Demeter:




I very much love this one - I'm such a sucker for greens, and this is a gorgeous light metallic lime green!  It's one that would be *perfect* for St. Patty's Day :D

Last up for today is Dionysus:




Dionysus is the perfect wine-colored purple with a brilliant golden shimmer in certain lighting, and it also looks amazing matted!

Application for every one of these was the same - smooth, no pulling or gooping or clumping, and they all dried in under 5 minutes to a shiny finish.  These also look great with a matte topcoat to add a different, delicate look to these metallics :D

I'll have the final five for you tomorrow along with details on costs for the individual bottles and the sets.  What do you think of these colors so far?  Do you like the colors chosen to represent these gods?  Which one is your favorite?

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Polishes were sent for photography and review purposes by Gothic Gala Lacquers.  All opinions are 100% honest and in no way swayed.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

International Salon and Spa Expo: Famous Names Products Dadi' Oil

Now that Valentine's is over, I can continue showing you some of the products I purchased and received from the International Salon & Spa Expo!!

While walking around with lovely Shannon of Seriously Nails, we ran into Linda Nordstrom of Famous Names Products!  She gave me a sample of their amazing Dadi'Oil and I couldn't wait to use it!



My nails on my non-dominant hand had been looking a little...rough.  They were long and pretty strong, but super dry, and a little flakie :-/  Take a look:





My ringer finger was especially bad.  So I decided to try a three-day experiment using the Dadi'Oil not only on the surrounding skin, but also on the entire nail bed.  I'm pleased to tell you the results were more than favorable!  After a mere 3 days of applying the Dadi'Oil twice a day (once in the morning, once in the evening), My ring finger was no longer peeling, and my cuticles were properly hydrated!  Check it out:





And look how shiny my nails are!!!!  I'm so happy with these results, I'll be using the oil again on my dominant hand in a few months after the next few holidays and accompanying nail art.  They will most certainly be in need of some major TLC :P

During my chat with Linda, she told me about another product they've come out with for professionals called the IBX Repair System.



This product can be used under gel polish to help create a protective shield over the nail and helps to reduce white spots that appear with constant use of gel polish.  More than gel, though, the repair system can also be used as a natural nail growth treatment - which is really appealing to me, since I'm constantly changing polish and my nails have suffered greatly from my hobby.  The system repairs nail damage and toughens the upper layers of the nail plate to allow nail growth.  If you're like me and you have deep grooves in your nails, repeated use of this treatment will fill in those grooves, and will also improve the color of your nails.  Here's a short video on it, if you're interested in more info on how it works:


I dunno about you, but this product sounds *amazing* and right up my alley!!  I'll be hunting down local salons to see who is carrying this new repair system :D

What do you all think of these products?  Have you heard of or tried anything like the IBX repair system before?  If so, how were your results?

Monday, February 23, 2015

Polish Post: 3 Faerie Princess Polishes by Ellagee

Happy Monday to you all - hope you survive it!!  Today I wanted to share three polishes I purchased from the Faerie Princess Collection by Ellagee ^_^  They're pretty gorgeous!!  I also added a little freehand accent nail :D

Here's "Cyrena:"




Cyrena is a sheer holo teal with pink flakies, and boy is it just divine!!  I'm wearing one coat over a white base (since these polishes are translucent to mirror a faerie's wings :D ).  Application was very smooth and even, and it dried in a very short amount of time.  I added a quick topcoat to really bring out the sparkle!!

Next is "Zanna:"




Zanna is a lavender purple with blue flakies, and it is my favorite of the three!  Those blue flakies are a gorgeous accent with the lavender :)  Again, I am wearing one coat over a white base, and application and dry time is the same as Cyrena.

Last up is "Elva:"




Elva is a peachy color with pastel pink flakies.  I love the delicacy of this color!!  So beautiful!!

Here are all three polishes and a freehanded faerie you may recognize ;)



You can find these and the rest of the Faerie Princess collection at Ellagee's store here.  What do you think of these?  Which of these three are your favorite?

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Meow-di Gras

Hope you all had a fun Mardi Gras yesterday!  Mine was uneventful and I spent the day fighting a migraine that's leaked its way into today :(  So I will be keeping this short and sweet!

A few weeks ago I purchased two new polishes freshly released from one of my favorite indies - Ice Polish!  One of those polishes is Meow-di Gras, and I used it as an accent on the tips of my nails - check it out:









I am so totally in love with her new labels!!!  But then again, I've always been a fan of penguins <(")  This glitter is sooooooo sparkly!!  I wish I could have caught that better in my photos!  It also spread out very nicely considering it is a glitter bomb and those tend to clump.  I adore the cat glitters in this mix, too - just makes it so fun and unique :)  I freehand painted the cat wearing a Mardi Gras mask, just for fun :)

What do you think?  Are you a fan of glitter bombs, or cat glitters?

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Twin Dragon Nails - with Narmai Piggieluv!

Happiest of Sunday's to you all!  Today I've got a super duper, very special, and very AWESOME post for you!!

A week or so ago I contacted Narmai Piggieluv about doing a twin nail design - of a dragon!  To my absolute delight, she agreed! ^_^  This was our reference image that she suggested:

Here is a sketch Narmai found - NOT an image I own

And...here is a collage of our designs together!


When she revealed her design to me, I was absolutely blown away!!  She has always had such an incredible talent for fitting all that detail onto such tiny canvases - and let's face it, that is one darn adorable dragon!!!  I want to take it home ^_^

I decided to do a zoomed-in version for my design, because I'm not so good with putting in detail THAT tiny, and it also didn't help that my cat took off with my teeny tiny paintbrush that I use for teeny tiny details :(  I also decided not to put too much detail into color, because I really liked the grayscale look.  The only color I added was a light blue to the wings, light touches of it to the scales on the neck, and to the face.  For the background color I used "Auriga" by Different Dimension.  Here are a few more photos of my design:


Of course I posed with one of my dragon eggs! ^_^

Doing this twin design was a big deal for me, not just because it was a fun design, but because it was with Narmai.  Gonna gush here for a minute - Narmai's actually the one that got me into freehand nail art to begin with, and it ironically all started with an old dragon design of hers that she showed me last year ahead of everyone else simply because she was excited, and saw that I was excited to see what she'd be posting the next day.  That was really cool, to me, that she shared her art with me before everyone else :)  She also gave me some tips on using acrylic, and assured me regular topcoat would NOT smudge the paint :P  I owe so much of what I do with my art to Narmai giving me that nudge!!  I don't think she'll ever understand how much I really appreciate her as an artist, and as a friend ^_^  So his was most definitely a huge honor for me <3

Hope you all enjoyed our art!!!  What do you think of our dragons? :D