Monday, December 3, 2012

Urban Outfitters Moonstone and the Winter Blues

Hey all, long time no blog, eh? I completely missed my 1 year blogiversary and now that the winter has kicked in, my cuticles have taken a beating. I'm so embarrassed of my hands lately that I don't want to swatch anything. I finally did give swatching a shot lately, but dislike 99% of the pictures. The winter blues are surely here.

But not all hope is lost. I managed to get one or two shots that weren't horrendous so I'm sharing them with you all. I recently went to Urban Outfitters and found some new polish. One that I picked up is called Moonstone. It looked like a dupe for a Deborah Lippman polish, so I bought it. Now I don't own any DL polish, but I thought this could possibly dupe Sugar Daddy. Moonstone in the bottle has this champagne rose duo-chrome color going on.

Moonstone was really hard to capture accurately in photographs. You can see a bit of the rose color at the top of the bottle. 

Now I have to say that personally I was a little disappointed with this. I put three coats of Moonstone over a base coat. The polish is a bit sheer, yet it does build in three coats. I figured this may happen because it's a light color. The finish is a dull metallic finish, which I'm not a big fan of. I used Seche Vite to top it off and make the polish shiny on the nail. 

It's a pretty color in theory, but it was lacking the duo-chrome effect that I saw in the bottle. There is also a very pretty hidden shimmer in the polish, but due to the finish it's hard to see. Maybe I'm just not a fan because it doesn't do much for my skin tone. Plus, this polish seems to not last very long. I've only been wearing it for 24 hours and there's already a bit of wear showing. Warning: be very careful when applying, because any minor mess up or imperfection on the nail shows up. 

I would have loved to have said that his was the perfect dupe for DL Sugar Daddy, but I don't think it is. It's a nice polish, don't get me wrong, but it's just not for me. 

Moonstone can be found at Urban Outfitters for $5 or 2 for $8. Urban Outfitters does have holos ($10 each) and a flakie (review hopefully coming soon) that may be worth checking out.

What do you think of Moonstone? Has anyone else tried it? What other dupes are you looking for? 

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

I Just Wanna Fly: Cult Nails Let Me Fly

All around the worlddd statues crumble for me, who knows how long I've loved you...

Do you have the song "Fly" by Sugar Ray stuck in your head now? Then I've done my job here. Earworm successful!

And that lovely song lyric was inspired by the polish Let Me Fly from Cult Nails. The Cult Nails website describes the polish this way, "Let Me Fly is the trifecta for polish enthusiasts. Its vividly pigmented dusty turquoise base, paired with her dazzling silver shimmer and flawless formula, establishes her pedigree of perfection. Let Me Fly was originally offered as part of the “A Day at the Races” Collection, 2011."

I would say the official description is spot on! Let Me Fly is actually a perfect fall color. It's a polish with a lot of depth and the silver shimmer gives it a little pop so the color doesn't fall flat. I'll admit that when I actually wore this color during the summer (which is when the swatches are from), I didn't love the color. But now looking back at my swatches, I think I'd love wearing now that the crisp Autumn air has rolled in. I think my hesitation with the color was that it didn't feel like a summer color. I'm sure it will be added into my fall rotation.

Cult Nails does not disappoint when it comes to application. Let Me Fly was two easy coats over a base coat and covered with a coat of Wicked Fast. Let me also say that Cult Nails Wicked Fast is easily in my top 2 of favorite top coats, along with Seche Vite. I've been trying a few new quick dry top coats out lately and I've been disappointed with most of them. The other top coats seem to dull the polish and I end up with dings even hours later, which doesn't happen with Wicked Fast. I'm going to have to order some more soon!

All in all, I've grown to love Let Me Fly over time. It's a gorgeous jewel-tone creme with a great shimmer. This polish has been around for a while so I'm sure many of you already own it.

I just wanna fly!

What's your perfect fall color? Do you like dark colors, including greens and blues? Or are your perfect fall colors strictly vampy reds, oranges, deep purples, and browns?

Friday, August 31, 2012

KelBel Cosmetics Labor Day Sale!

Hey everyone! Since it is Labor Day weekend, I will holding a sale in my Etsy shop. From September 1st until 11:59 pm September 2nd there will be free shipping on all orders! So take advantage of this great offer! Click the picture below to be taken to the Etsy shop. Happy Labor Day!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Mani-cure Monday: America! Eff yeah!

Happy Monday all! I've decided to start a new weekly schedule that will hopefully make me more productive. Not just in blogging, but overall. So part of the new schedule is blogging weekly on Mondays. I'm calling it "Mani-cure Monday". Most of us get the Monday Blues and according to the Bangles, it's just another Manic Monday. So what better way to cure the Monday Blues than with an awesome mani?!

Ok it may have taken me a while to explain it, but there you have it! This week I have a patriotic manicure of sorts. This was actually my July 4th mani, so you can tell how far behind I am in posting. I figured though that I can tie this old manicure in with recent events. As I'm sure you're all aware, the Olympics ended last night. For the last two weeks I've been glued to the television to watch as much coverage as I could. I really enjoyed the Olympics this year, especially all of the gymnastics and volleyball coverage. I also enjoyed last night's closing ceremonies, even though NBC cut some performers *ahem: Muse*. But I guess the Spice Girls performing kind of made up for that.

So to show my pride for the old U.S.A, here is my red, white and blue manicure.

I did love this combination of red, white and blue. The red is Pretty & Polished Nova, which may just be one of my favorite reds ever. There's even a bit of subtle holo in there. The white is Snow White from Brucci. I really do need a new white polish, preferably one that covers well in 1-2 coats. Any suggestions? Over the white I layered Essie's Stroke of Brilliance, the latest polish to be added to the Luxeffects line. Essie refers to Stroke of Brilliance on it's website as "platinum sparks", but the glitter is actually more blue in tone than silver. 

Lastly is a england Order of the Garter, which is a beyond gorgeous royal blue. It was a dream to work with and covered in two coats. 

Did this manicure help to cure your Monday Blues? I hope you enjoyed my new post! What is your favorite white polish? Were you addicted to the Olympics like I was? And who felt like they were back in middle school when the Spice Girls performed? 

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Cult Nails NYC Meetup & Swag!

Hey readers! I'm finally motivated to get something posted after a great experience last night! Last night was the NYC meetup event that was hosted by Maria (and family) of Cult Nails. The event was at Bowlmor Lanes in Times Square. After much internal debating, I decided to go and I'm so glad I did!

I had a great time at the event. Not only did I meet Maria, who is the founder/creator of one of my favorite indie nail polish lines, but I also met some other great nail polish enthusiasts. Many were bloggers, other were other nail polish makers and others there to have a great time with people who share the same passion.

I'm sure we all have out moments where we want to squee and tell our everyday friends about some great nail polish find, a particular brand or how it's a bummer that we broke a nail. And we know that sometimes people just don't understand how you can have 50 shades of purple, but they're all different! So it was nice to meet other people that understand nail polish.

Of some of the people there were the creator of Twee & Honey who was sweet enough to make a special batch of polish just for the meetup (more on that later). Also there were Christi who works for Jesse's Girl (and also provided some goodies), Claudia of Chromatic Misadventures, Amy from Gotham Polish, Carly from Lacquered Lover, and many more!

It was a fun night of bowling and polish (I did decent enough at bowling), and I'm very glad I decided to go. Hopefully there will be more events like this in the future, not only with Cult Nails, but with other bloggers in general.

Also, please forgive me that I only took one picture at the event (that I posted to Instagram). I didn't have my camera with me, just my phone. But check out the Cult Nails facebook page for some pictures Maria took!

And finally, onto the swag. I know it's been a big Justin Bieber term lately, but swag also stands for stuff we all get! Maria was so generous in giving everyone a gift bag at the end of the night. I was amazed by all the stuff in the bag and the tote bags are cute by themselves. I got Nevermore, Mazo and Feelin' Froggy! I don't have any of those, which is exciting. I also traded Pryanka Seduction for Iconic. (It was Pyranka's birthday too!) I also now own a Cult Nails glass nail file, which I've also had my eye on for a while.

Christi also gave us some Jesse's Girl goodies! Eye shadow and eye shadow primer, which I am looking forward to using. I've needed to get some new primer, so I'm excited to see how this one works. Thanks Christi! 

And lastly is my Twee & Honey swag! The polish was made specially for the event, the bottle with purple liquid is nail polish remover (so thoughtful!) and those business cards are just adorable!

There's nail polish on the business card!

I'm really looking forward to trying this glitter bomb! It will have a special place in my stash. I can't say enough good things about the lovely people I met last night. Who knew that polish could introduce me to so many new people.

Were you at the Cult Nails event? If you were, how did you like the event? Did any of you go to the MA Cult Nails event? If I got anyone's information or name wrong, please let me know! I'll be adding a bunch of the girls to my blog roll now that I'm pretty sure the blog rolls are safe again. 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Over 3,000! (with Zoya Bevin and a cat)

Hey all! Just a quick post to let you all know that I reached 3,000 page views! This little blog is making it's way in the world. I wanted to let you know that I greatly appreciate every single page view and comment. I love interacting with all of you in the nail world.

To celebrate (I guess), here are some swatches of Zoya Bevin that I actually took a while ago. I love this color and the application was great. I believe this is two coats with top coat.

And just for fun, here's a picture of my cat, Ripley, alseep. (When she's awake she's a crazy raptor.)


Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Late Memorial Day / Happy July 4th!

Happy 4th of July everyone! I hope my American followers (and our Canadian friends too) are enjoying the day. I love the 4th of July because it means BBQ, fireworks and just an all-around good time with friends and family. Plus, the New Girl episode where they play True American is on right now. Happy 4th!

(PS: Head over to KelBel Cosmetics and check out my 15% off sale! )

I did realize though that I never got around to posting my Memorial Day manicure. So today I'll post that and  soon I'll post my actual July 4th inspired manicure.

My Memorial Day manicure was a polish that I was working on for KelBel Cosmetics over two coats of Brucci Snow White. I didn't name the polish, but it's basically red and blue hearts in a white base. It was difficult to get the hearts out though. The manicure itself came out a bit thick since I had quite a few layers of polish on. 

Overall, I did like this combination and I thought it was very holiday-appropriate, but this polish needs tweaking before I add it to the shop (if ever). I still really like the concept of this polish. Glitter is just a pain to work with when mixing polish. I give other indies who do glitter polish well A LOT of credit, it's not easy at all!

What do you think of my late-Memorial Day / 4th of July manicure? What do you think of this nail polish attempt? What was your 4th of July manicure? Let me know in the comments section!

Friday, June 29, 2012

a england Ascalon

Happy Friday! I hope everyone has been enjoying their summer so far and Fridays during the summer are by far the best kind. Especially when your job has summer Fridays like mine does. I get out at 1:30 pm, which is awesome! This weekend I'm going to see "Magic Mike". *blush* I can't help it, I've been looking forward to this movie since I first heard about it months ago. Can't wait!

The polish I have for you today is a england Ascalon. I received my first a englands a while ago and this swatch has been patiently waiting in my Picasa albums to be posted.

Ascalon is part of The Legend collection. Adina is so poetic and has such a strong vision with her whole nail polish line. On her website, Adina describes Ascalon as, "Forged by magic and guided by our hero's sainted hand, the steely grey of his spire is alive with a swirling heart of lavender fire." See? I doubt I could do any better than that.

Multi-dimensional or multi-hued polishes are by far my favorite and Ascalon is that. It's grey with a hint of lavender and holograpic shimmer. It is absolutely gorgeous in the sunlight and I couldn't stop staring at my hands the whole time I had it on. 

I actually don't remember how many coats I used since these swatches were taken over a month ago. But I didn't have any major issues with application or coverage. This polish is pretty much perfect in my book.

What do you think of Ascalon? What's your favorite part of Adina's a england? And last but not least, are you going to see "Magic Mike" this weekend? 

Monday, June 4, 2012

We Are Family! KelBel Cosmetics Ava and Amanda

I'm baacckkkk! May was just not my month for blogging. I had one post the whole month. ONE! That's so sad. As always, life gets in the way or there are just times when I just don't want to sit down and edit photos. It is probably my least favorite part of nail blogging. I'm considering just getting rid of the watermark all together to make it easier. People out there seem to just crop out watermarks anyway if they really want to steal photos.

But aside from that, life is good. I just spent the weekend at my annual family reunion in the New York Catskills. We've been going to the same resort for 29 years and I've been there every year of my life except for two years for my high school graduation and for my brother's. My mom went when she was pregnant with me, so I count that "in the womb" year, haha. Basically, I think of it as the greatest place on earth. I'd rather go to Sunny Hill (the resort where we hold the reunion) than Disney World! I love my family and we always have such a great time.

The reason for the story is that it inspired today's post. My older brother and his family moved to Atlanta, GA about two years ago. Luckily, they haven't missed a Sunny Hill reunion since! In April is my niece Amanda's birthday and this year (she just turned 5) as part of her present, I created two nail polish colors and named them after Amanda and her sister, Ava. I love my nieces and miss them a lot now that they live so far away. I was able to see them this weekend and I'm always thankful for that.

Here are the bottle shots of the colors I created. I didn't swatch them since they were gifts. I have a feeling I'll recreate the colors though so I can wear them myself.

Since Amanda is only 5 years old, I went with an age-appropriate color, light pink. Once she gets older she can wear any crazy color she wants, like her Aunt. But for now, I thought it was best to stick to a classic. Plus, Amanda is a girly girl that loves anything princess related. It's the perfect color for her namesake.

My niece Ava is the big sister. I wanted something a little older, yet still fun. The color is a blurple and in real life has a subtle duo-chrome effect. I think it also matches Ava's personality. 

I had a lot of fun creating these colors as gifts for my nieces! I can't wait until I see them next. 

Have you created any custom colors for people you know as gifts? Does your family have an annual reunion? 

Friday, May 4, 2012

Captivated by Scandal

Happy Friday lovely readers! It seems that life is so busy lately! I know a lot of people dislike the "busy" excuse, but seriously, it's true. This week was my 1 year wedding anniversary, a full week of work of course, and on Wednesday I went to see Eric Hutchinson at the Highline Ballroom with my cousin and some friends. Overall, it's been a good week, but it's left no time for blogging.

I've also decided that I have so many untrieds that I've never worn and a bunch of other polish that I may have worn, but never posted. So in the interest in catching up, I'm going to give you shorter posts in the future. (Except this post.) Shorter posts will allow me to do more posting and get through my stash. I hope you all don't mind, but to me, a shorter post is better than none.

Today's post features two Cult Nails beauties, Scandalous from the Divas and Drama collection and Captivated. Scandalous is a gorgeous coral jelly creme polish and Captivated is a sheer coral jelly with gold and coral flakes and glitter pieces. The pictures are of 3 coats of Scandalous and 2 coats of Captivated, using Cult Nails Get it On and Wicked Fast.

This is probably one of my favorite Cult Nails layering combos that I've tried so far. The mani even lasted a whole 5 days with no chipping! Plus, it looks even better in person.

What do you think of this combo? Have you tried it yet? Let me know in the comments section!

Monday, April 30, 2012

Something Blue: My 1st Wedding Anniversary and Your Day Giftable Nail Polish

Happy Monday everyone! I hope you all had a great weekend, I know I did. I have a very special (and long) post for you lovely readers. Today, April 30th, marks my one year wedding anniversary! The first year really flew by and time doesn't show any signs of slowing down. My hubby and I celebrated our anniversary this weekend by going out to a nice dinner on Saturday. The restaurant we went to also holds special events and the cocktail hour for a wedding that day was in the bar section of the restaurant. It was nice to be at dinner, but also be reminded of our wedding around the same time a year ago. I hope the bride and groom of that wedding were having as much fun as we did last year.

I'll be honest that planning the wedding wasn't my favorite thing ever. I had a few meltdowns along the way and at times just hated the planning process, but it was well worth it in the end. My husband and I ended up having a great, memorable wedding. Aside from forgetting my veil at home when I went to the salon, pretty much everything that day went smoothly. The weather was gorgeous (a bright, warm spring day), everyone got there on time (including me), and we had so much fun! Everyone ate, drank and was merry, and there was a lot of dancing.

Photo credit: Meaghan Slottje Design and Photography

For today's post, I have a very special polish. About a month ago, I was notified that I had won a custom bottle of polish from Your Day - Giftable Polishes by Frances Tatulli on Facebook. Your Day makes custom nail polish for special occasions and the date of the special occasion is essentially the name of the polish. Here is the bio about Your Day:

"Your Day – Giftable Polishes by Frances Tatulli
Fran has been doing Nails, Hair & Make Up for as long as she can remember. With 4 daughters she always had plenty of girls to practice her talents.  After beginning her career as a Nail expert & designer she quickly expanded her horizons to include Hair & Make Up with over 10 years of Avon Cosmetics Industry experience. Through extensive training and education, she met and worked for celebrity manicurists which opened many doors for her. You can find Fran at New York Fashion Week, not only working but mingling with Designers. You will also find her at many charity events in NY.

Fran’s passion for color was indulged by starting Your Day, "giftable" nail polish company. Instead of naming the unique color in a bottle, her brilliant and marketable idea for all ages is to date “your day” that is sentimental to you. Bottles can be customized, as well as colors. View more on Fran’s website"

I like the concept of Your Day nail polish, it's a different spin on custom blended nail polish. You get to pick the color and the date, so you know that your polish is one of a kind. I had been a fan of Your Day on Facebook for a while and had been selected as the winner of the giveaway.  I was excited, of course, and had to decide what color and date I would want. Since my anniversary was coming up, I asked Fran to make me a blue polish with flecks in it and used my wedding shoes as inspiration. The date, of course, would be April 30th. For my wedding I went with a traditional french manicure and acrylic tips and Essie's Ballet Slippers for my pedicure, but blue is more my style.

The Inspiriation

Me on my wedding day!

Within a few days I received my polish and I can say that Fran did a great job! My wedding colors were blue and silver. My custom Your Day polish captured this perfectly. It's a bright blue polish with silver flecks throughout the polish. The polish is opaque in one coat and has a foil-like finish, but I always like to do two coats of polish anyway.

I used Cult Nails Get it On base coat and Wicked Fast top coat as well. I didn't really need a quick dry top coat for this polish since it dries very quickly on its own, but using a top coat helped smooth out the finish. The color actually reminds me a little bit of Wet n Wild's Stay Outta My Bismuth, but the flecks in that polish are gold rather than silver. It's fair to say I like my Your Day polish better than the Wet n Wild polish, since this holds a more personal meaning. Who doesn't love a custom color?

I have to say that having my own Your Day nail polish was a great way to commemorate my one year wedding anniversary. I love this color and the formula on it was great. I even got a compliment when I was picking up some coffee from Dunkin, which always makes me happy. (The compliment and the coffee.) 

You can contact Fran of Your Day Giftable Nail Polish through her Facebook page or through her website. The Facebook page also has pictures of other custom polish and the bottle designs. The packaging is really creative and makes a great favor for special occasions. Fran is based in the Hudson Valley region of New York and also does wedding hair and makeup. 

One of my favorite pictures of our wedding day
Share your wedding memories and stories in the comments section! I'd love to hear them. Do you like the idea of a nail polish customized for a special date or occasion? What color nail polish did you wear on your wedding day? 

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Royal (Nail) Mail!

First of all, Happy Anniversary Will & Kate! Mostly I'm only aware of this fact because last year the Royal Wedding was the day before my very own wedding. But that's a post for another day.

Two weeks ago I received probably my favorite piece of nail mail, my a england order from the Tristam sale. With no tracking number, I could only wonder (and ask fellow nail polish lovers) when my order would arrive. Finally it showed up, but not without my hubby taunting me first joking that he was going to send it back.

I was so excited I even took a picture of the stamp

I'm just a little obsessed with London and England in general. I went on a Study Abroad short-term program to London during the summer between my junior and senior years of college. It was only two weeks that we actually spent in London, but I fell in love with the city. I felt so comfortable there and I just loved everything about it. My love of London was what first attracted me to a england nail polish.

But oh my goodness, the polish! Adina is a nail polish genius! I've seen gorgeous swatches on various blogs and I know everyone raves about them, but it's something entirely different to hold these beauties in your hands.  Even the hubby was impressed and put some polish on his thumbnail to test one out. Plus, I love that Adina has a story and inspiration behind each collection. She has such a strong vision and that's something I admire.

Since Saint George and Dragon were sold out, along with some others I wanted, I picked up Ascalon, Order of the Garter and Avalon. They are gorgeous in the bottle and I'm very happy with my purchase. Plus,  I love blue and purple, so all of these colors are right up my alley.

I can't wait until I've tried all three of these out. Now that I've made my first purchase from a england, I can't wait to be able to purchase more of Adina's creations. Saint George and Dragon are definitely next up from a england, as long as they stay in stock. 

Did you participate in the Tristam sale? Which colors did you purchase? Let me know in the comments section!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

KelBel Cosmetics Sale!

Hey everyone, just a quick post tonight. I've decided to have a sale over at my Etsy shop, KelBel Cosmetics, on Monday 4/30.

The sale will be to celebrate my one year wedding anniversary! All nail polish will be 15% off for the day. Please check the Etsy shop store front on Monday for the 15% off code.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Avon: It's not a trick, it's an Illusion.

I just looked at my recent posts and realized they have been all about Cult Nails! It's time to switch it up and give you all a breather between Cult posts. (Not that we all don't love the brand, but I'll save some for next week.)

Today I have a polish for you that surprised me with how great it is. I'm not sure how I ended up stumbling across a swatch for Avon Illusion, part of the Enchanted Spring Shades Limited Edition collection, but that's how I ended up buying it. I found a swatch online and then asked my coworker who is an Avon Rep for the new catalog. Avon was having a sale for any 3 nail polish colors for $7.99. A great deal!

My Avon order (L to R): Blue Escape, Illusion, Aqua Fantasy
Illusion is the perfect name for this nail polish. I don't really know how to put my finger on what the color actually is. I would describe it as a greige creme with pink iridescent effect and a very subtle hint of green. The color is absolutely gorgeous and I'm very surprised that Avon came out with something so different. Usually I associate Avon with pinks and reds that mostly your grandmother would wear.

I was also impressed by the formula. It wasn't too thick or too thin, and for a light color, it evened out nicely in just two coats. Plus as you can see, it only needed two coats for it to be opaque. I used Cult Nails Get it On base coat and Wicked Fast top coat.

Illusion is not in your face at all, it's a very subtle color but I think it's going to be great for summer. I also appreciate the fact that Illusion is very work appropriate for those of us who work in an office. The downside is that Illusion is very camera shy.

Illusion is available through Avon, either by representative or their website. The Enchanted Spring Shades collection normally sells for $5.00 per bottle, but right now it's on sale for $3.49 online. Also contact your local rep to see if the 3 for $7.99 is still going on.

What do you think of this polish? Do you own any polish from Avon? Are you an Avon fan or have to stayed away from the brand? Let me know in the comments section!