Friday, February 28, 2014

Essence on the way

So remember when I talked last Sunday about how my grocery store had been making changes in the nail aisle? Well, apparently they're not done yet. Across the aisle from all the nail polish is the hair section, which I tend to ignore completely unless I need a new hairbrush or something. But over last weekend this popped up at one end of that aisle:
So, woo, Essence (squeezed in next to the girls' hair doo-dads) - I'm assuming it won't be all nail polish but hopefully they will at least have some! I've never seen Essence in any store here other than Ulta, so that's pretty cool.

Today the weather sucked, but reportedly tomorrow will be sunny, so I'll try to get a picture of today's mani by the time this goes up, which is This is Tree-Mendous. Nice and green and sparkly for Mardi Gras.
(picture below the jump)

...and the sun was out as advertised, so here you go:
I will resist the urge to critique my 10-year-old (machine-)quilting stitches visible there - or my slightly-worn manicure, which was two days old at this point - and tell you instead that this polish looks rather wildly different depending on the light. It looks like this in a lot of lights, and then in others (direct sunlight, bright fluorescents) it lights up like, well, a Christmas tree. Which I guess is the whole idea, isn't it?

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Social media & Cajun Shrimp

This is a stray spot that was unfilled on the "fall colors" nail wheel, and I filled it with OPI Cajun Shrimp (in spot #20):
It fits very nicely there.

So, I was being sort of randomly sad that fuckyeahnailart doesn't seem to post much any more (partly because "fuckyeah[insert hobby or fandom here]" is sort of a Tumblr staple and it rarely fails to amuse me), but I figured there's bound to be lots of others. I poked around and found - or re-found, in some cases - The Illustrated Nail, One Nail to Rule Them All (tagline on header: "And in the darkness paint them"), Celine Does Nails... - plus quite a few that I already read their regular blogs, like Chalkboard Nails. (All these people may have regular blogs, but I haven't found them or don't have them on my list that I read regularly, anyway.) Seems like everybody has all these things now, right? Or most of them. Everybody has IG, a Facebook page, Twitter, maybe Tumblr and Pinterest, and a few more besides! 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Colors of Mardi Gras, part 2

I'm trying to be a bit more organized with this than I was yesterday, so I'm going with more words, fewer pictures:

Every single gold or near-gold that I have may possibly be discontinued: but I think these are possibly still available if you hunt around:
Khroma Fairy Dust - apparently there was a lawsuit and Khroma is now Kardashian Beauty, because of that. You may still be able to find old bottles of Khroma around, though. This is a nice small gold glitter in a clear base. I've ended up using it a lot!
Colorstay Fall Mood, which I bought at Big Lots lately (reads as sort of a rose-gold metallic)
Pahlish Pyrite (still a couple of bottles, at least, available at that link)
China Glaze Mingle with Kringle, from the 2013 holiday collection
SOPI I Only Shop Vintage (check Big Lots for this one too)
Milani Gold Glitz

Really, you see both red-violets and more neutral purples as Mardi Gras purples. I'm not an expert, but I think it's really intended to be a more neutral "royal purple" - but I don't think anybody's going to throw you out of a Mardi Gras party for having a purple that's too red, either. So something like Sinful Colors Fig or Triple Shine Vanity Flare would probably work. I also think SH Royal Invite is a current color - it's more on the blue-violet end, but it reads plenty purple for this purpose.
Other colors that I have that are more what I think of as Royal Purple are:
Colorstay Amethyst
Zoya Mira
Ulta Celebutante

Here's my purple nail wheel from a couple of months ago:
and here's the guide to it, over here.

More greens
Some I didn't get around to on yesterday's list:
Illamasqua Viridian - dark and a bit blue-tinged, but much closer to emerald than, say, the Rococo Darkest Emerald is. I'm not sure if it's still "in production" but I know Sephora still had it not long ago
Zoya Veruschka - the Matte Velvet - if you didn't snag it while it was available again last fall, then it's probably not easily obtainable, unless you're willing to try eBay to get it. Gorgeous, though.
China Glaze This is Tree-mendous - another one from last year's holiday collection
Also from holiday collections past: Pahlish Boughs of Holly, Julie G (Gumdrops) Mistletoe

Here's a whole ton of greens that Zoya is still making. And purples. And golds (although some of those are more gold than others). (Zoya's website is so easy to use. And none of these are affiliate links, if you're wondering.)

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Colors of Mardi Gras: emerald green

Mardi Gras is a week from today, and I was rooting around in my polishes for the proper colors (if you don't know what the traditional Mardi Gras colors are, look here). I lived for 20-odd years in a place that celebrates Mardi Gras - and I still work in that same town, even though I don't live there any more - so I kind of got in the habit of paying attention to it. I don't often go to the parades or anything because I am, well, middle-aged and crowd-averse, plus I don't really drink much any more, but that doesn't mean I can't wear beads and paint my nails in Mardi Gras colors, right?

(Note: If you want to see some crazy Mardi Gras manicures, do a search on Pinterest. There are tons.)

So, we're looking for Emerald-ish greens - pull them out for Mardi Gras, leave them out for St. Patrick's Day - plus royal purples and golds. Often you see this as just a yellow-gold color, but I prefer the metallic kind, and I have lots of that stuff. (Interestingly, I didn't actually own many golds at all until lately, but since last summer or so I have been steadily acquiring more and more.)

Monday, February 24, 2014

Nail wheel overflow, part 2

I posted a picture of part of this nail wheel over a month ago, but at the time I didn't have pictures of the rest, so here that is. This is actually the first of several overflow nail wheels that I've accumulated since I started trying to swatch everything. Hopefully I will catch up before too long - I'm not buying stuff that fast!

As usual, the writing on it is a mess but I do have a handy guide to what it says:
  1. Rainforest (Colorstay)
  2. Grass Stains (Orchid)
  3. Topaz (Revlon Chroma)
  4. Walker Bait (Dollish Polish)
  5. Slightly Unstable, 2 coats (Paint Box Polish)
  6. Gray's Anatomy (Wet n Wild)
  7. Black in Mirrors, 2 coats (Color Show)
  8. Black in Mirrors, 1 coat
  9. Slick Black (SH Triple Shine)
  10. Elderberry, 1 coat (Nail Pattern Boldness)
  11. Deadly Nightshade over 2 coats Black in Mirrors
  12. Deadly Nightshade (Dollish Polish)
  13. Alcatraz... Rocks (1 coat) (OPI)
  14. Rid of Me (Nostalgic)
  15. Azure (SH LustreShine)
  16. Vanity Flare (SH Triple Shine)
  17. Vice (Urban Decay)
  18. Fig (Sinful Colors)
  19. Kaboom, 3 coats (Salon Perfect)
  20. Patricia (Nostalgic)
(detail pics after the jump)

Sunday, February 23, 2014

The nail polish aisle (plus NOTD)

(aka the "it's Sunday and I'm bored" edition)

I was catching up on nail blogs last night and in somebody's comments it was mentioned that HEB might start carrying Sinful Colors - and I can confirm that my store now has them, and I think I might even have pictorial evidence. I was snapping pictures in the nail aisle a few days ago because I noticed several things that had changed, and I think if we blow it up large enough you might be able to tell:
It's not a huge number of them but they're definitely there, down at the bottom underneath Orchid (which is where the yellow coupons are) and Essie, and in between what I think is NOPI on the left and Wet n Wild on the right. Way on the left is Sally Hansen gels. What got me started taking pictures in the first place, in fact, was the sheer size of the revamped Sally Hansen collection:
...and this is just the color polish, further over on the left you can see the start of a whole section of SH nailcare products, too (and I think that's some tanning products down at the bottom). The only thing that I can tell has disappeared from this display is Nail Growth Miracle, and they've added what looks like the whole run of Triple Shine, plus the new satin line, Sugar Coats, all that stuff. In fact this entire picture is their products, except for a bit of the next section (what was in the last picture) wayyyyy over on the right.

(NOTD under the jump)

Friday, February 21, 2014

The Red and the Black (and the gray)

I had to go look up "The Red and the Black" after that phrase popped into my head - I knew it was a book and I knew I associated it with French class, but that's all I could remember about it. It is French, by Stendhal. My school had a language program where you started French or Spanish in junior high and could continue all the way through high school, if you wanted to. So we got to the point along about junior year where we were reading novels. I didn't read that one but what I remember is that it was reputed to be especially hard going, at least in French. (There also a "Red and Black" song in "Les Miz" as some people may know. I'm not sure about whether there's any real connection between those two.)

So anyway, that is where the title came from. The reason that title popped in my head is because I have the missing bits of the red wheel and the black/gray/white wheel to show you. I'm starting with the red one because all I am going to show you IS the wheel - somehow my previous picture went missing. It's not really even necessary because I had partial shots of the wheel, but somehow I feel like it's incomplete until I post it! So here you go:
The interesting thing is how similar they all look, in this shot, even though many of them are actually not! (Although honestly, I think if I have something I could stand to destash, it might be a few of these reds!) Here's the list (under the jump), so you won't have to be trying to read my writing:

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Apocalips Wow

(See the pictures below for the explanation of the title. It may not be a new tagline for Rimmel, but it was the first time I had seen it, anyway, and it amused me.)

As far as NotD: Let's see, I had done the dual-glitter goofy Valentine's Day mani on Thursday night (so we're going back almost a week, now), and I kept it until well up in the day on Saturday, when I managed to scrape part of the polish off of one nail, and then after that I gave up and started peeling the rest of it off. I was still feeling a bit in the pink mood, though, so I put on Pyro Pink, one of the Hunger Games Glosstinis that I had never worn, and I can't say I fell in love with it. It was alright, though, so I kept it on the rest of the weekend. Then, I actually went almost 24 hours without anything on my nails. Weird, huh? I hardly ever do that any more. But now I'm wearing Lizard Belly, from Glitter Gal. I swear that every time I wear holos the sun never comes out the whole time (and you have to remember that I live in a place that gets something on the order of 300 days of sunshine a year) - I was in Galveston and it was foggy as hell. But anyway, it still shines pretty good under the fluorescent light, so I'm still getting some holo goodness.

My bottle of Cult Nails Fetish arrived from Llarowe - I had ordered it on Wednesday night (last week), and I think it arrived on Saturday, which is pretty awesome service. I haven't tried it out yet, though.

Also on Saturday, I had to get a prescription filled and we were in the opposite direction from the grocery store where I usually get my prescriptions filled, so we went in CVS. I think I had said that I thought Rimmel seemed to be closing out their Lasting Polish line that is what is in all the drugstores around here (although I have no idea if that means they're closing out Lasting Finish in general - my guess would be "not necessarily") and sure enough, CVS had something new on the sidecap where those polishes had been (and it was tall and skinny so the first picture is the top half of it and the second one is the bottom):

The colors didn't knock me out or anything, but the Kate Moss name will probably sell better, I'm guessing!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Blog sale and Big Lots goodies

It occurs to me that I haven't posted the new things I've gotten lately, so here you go. First we have goodies from Miss Holly Berries' blog sale:
Across the top is Sinful Colors Show Stopping, then Barry M Silver Glitter (which I think was a limited edition that was only available at Boots in the UK, so it crossed the Atlantic at some unknown point), and Essence Miss Universe; the bottom row is Icing After Party, CG Glitter All the Way (Mardi Gras colors, woo!), and Color Club Editorial, which I already have one mini of, but I like enough that I thought I would take the opportunity to get another one. I now should have more or less the equivalent of a full bottle!

And this is the three that I got at Big Lots, plus a stray:
Colorstay Rich Raspberry and Fall Mood; Rimmel Rags to Riches; and the stray (which did not come from Big Lots) is Rococo Darkest Emerald, which I got on sale with all that stuff from Space.NK after Christmas, but which somehow managed to miss being in my previous pictures. I think I'd call it a teal rather than an emerald, really. (Note that it looks awfully similar to "Miss Universe" two pictures up!)

I did multiple coats of several of these on one wheel, and a single coat on another wheel, for some reason, so here are the comparison pictures:

Darkest Emerald - multiple coats on left, a single coat on right
Glitter All the Way (I think the "3" you can see on the left wheel is number of coats)
Show Stopper
Silver Glitter
After Party (which is a slightly-weird multicolored shredded flakie, it's interesting)
The purplish one at the bottom of that picture is Orly Intergalactic Space, if you're wondering. It's also a very interesting mix! And I thought I had one of these pictures for Miss Universe but so far I haven't found it, sorry!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The end of the stash project

It occurs to me that that title might be misleading - this is the end of this stash project, the one that I started on New Year's Day and blithely thought would be done in a few days. Well, it's done now, at least. More or less. Although that's misleading, too (maybe I'm misleading myself, mostly) because actually it's just part of a larger project - now I get to sort everything by color again and I suspect that you are going to get more photos as I do that. But here are - hopefully! - all the brands that you haven't already seen.

(To explain for those who haven't been following along the whole time: I had my polishes sorted by color, but then I decided, "Oh, I'll sort them by brand just so I can see them that way," but then once I did that I started taking pictures and dawdling around, and now it's six weeks later and I'm finally done with that, and now I'm sorting them back by color again, because I don't really like them by brand! Yeah, slightly crazy, I know. Partly I think it's that I forget how many polishes I have now and how complicated it gets doing any sort of resorting project - and also I'm just a color junkie.)

This is assorted non-US brands (because calling them "foreign" sounds silly to me):
Pretty Serious Party by the Pool; Glitter Gal Lizard Belly; Picture Polish Violet Femme, Jade Echarpe de Seda (gorgeous red holo); Essence Colour and Go Ultimate Pink and Break Through; Pixi Evening Emerald; Layla CE61 (aka Ipanema Girl). I didn't deliberately sort these by country, but they are together by region, anyway: Pretty Serious, Glitter Gal, and Picture Polish are all Australian brands; Jade is Brazilian; and the bottom row is all European brands. Essence is German, Pixi is British, and Layla is Italian. (I know Ulta carries Essence, and Target is now carrying Pixi, but as far as I know you can't get Layla or any of the top-row ones in a big U.S. retailer thus far. It's probably only a matter of time!)

More brands that I only own one of:
Urban Decay Vice; Khroma Fairy Dust; Sonia Kashuk Starry Night.

Cover Girl:
I never have bought any of the larger size Outlast ones. All I have is the three Glosstinis: Seared Bronze, Pyro Pink (those two from the last Hunger Games collection) and Sangria. Then I have the  one other one which I talked about the other day in the entry about older polishes, and that's Gold Dust.

The new Maybelline Color Show line has caught on with me much more than either the new Cover Girl or the new L'Oreals have, so far - especially the Brocades, which I wish I'd bought more of.
L-R: Magenta Mirage, which is a Shredded (aka crackle); Tenacious Teal; my two Brocades, Black in Mirrors and Amethyst Couture; and my one remaining old-style Maybelline, Two-Timer Stars - which I think I got from Karen, meaning none of my old Maybellines have survived this long. I used to have several. At least in this picture you can see that Amethyst Couture IS amethyst-toned, because sometimes it's hard to tell.

This is what I call the Rite-Aid group, because we don't have Rite-Aids in Texas and to my knowledge none of these brands are available anywhere around here. I bought all of these in Ohio last year.
Petites in Blackberry; Hedy's 'stoned' in Ramblin' Red and Dusty Spring Fields; Jesse's Girl in Glee. (There are also the Julie G Gumdrops, which would properly belong with this group, except that they were in another picture a while back.)

And bringing up the tail end - I almost forgot to take a picture of them - is my little collection of L'Oreals:
Jet Set Departure and Nightlife; Jet Set Shine Hasty; and my only new-formula one, Jolly Lolly from the Gellies collection last summer. I used to have a lot of L'Oreals - I was very partial to Jet Set in particular - but these three are the only older ones that survived this long. (When I only had a dozen or so polishes, I used to go through them very fast!)

And yay! That's that. I have already started doing some rearranging into color categories, but I'm going to take my time a bit with that and look at the nail wheel and see if I can get things arranged better by underlying color this time and not just what they look like in the bottle! So it may take me a while. (I'm sure nobody's holding their breath.)

Monday, February 17, 2014

Stash - misc drugstore

This is the next-to-last installment of my stash-by-brand series that I started six weeks ago - you may notice that I kinda lost momentum there! It was interesting to me to see it, though, since I organize my stash by color, normally. So this is some drugstore polishes, and tomorrow I'll have a few more, plus some strays.

Okay, first up is various incarnations of Wet n Wild:
L-R - top row is Fergie Cabo Cruise, Fantasy Makers Purple Potion, Megalast On a Trip, Wild Shine Black Creme; bottom row is all Fast Dry: Teal of Fortune, Party of Five Glitters, Dancer Is the Best Reindeer, and Gray's Anatomy. (Fast Dry seems to be prone to losing the lettering on their labels!)

NYC Long Wearing: this first one is the one that's mislabeled - it says Pink Champagne but it's really Fuschia Glamour, I think. Then we have Times Square Tangerine Creme, and then the In A New York Minutes: East Village, Fruit Punch, and Big City Dazzle, which is a Sparkle Top Coat. (I also have Grand Central Station, which is clear, but it got mixed in with the basecoats and topcoats and I didn't think it was interesting enough to bother going to track it down just for completeness' sake.)

The two big bottles of L.A. Colors are Jewel Tone and Pink Sizzle. The minis are all unlabeled, as I've said before, and the only reason I decided they were L.A. Colors was that the one down at the very bottom is more Jewel Tone. (Also the bottles look really similar, even without that evidence!)

This is some miscellaneous stuff. Fright Night Claw Polish in Voodoo; Spoiled in Cougar Attack and Deeper Dive; L.A. Girl 3D Effects in Black Illusion; e.l.f. Fairy Dust (which unlike other "Fairy Dusts" is a flakie); Sinful Colors Nail art in Bad Chick; and Confetti Purple Pizzazz.

Last installment tomorrow!

Friday, February 14, 2014

V-Day mashup mani

I couldn't decide what polish I wanted to wear for Valentine's Day, so I put two different glitters on a fuchsia base. I don't hate it but I'm not sure I love it yet, either - I'll have to see what I think in daylight. Actually I have a LOT of layers here, because I did Nail Nutrition Strength, then I did Glitter-a-Peel, THEN Colorstay basecoat and two coats of Rich Raspberry, THEN In Through the Out Door, which is raspberry-ish and gold glitter, and then Poppy Fields, which is red and a bit of gold glitter in a red jelly base. What's that, 8 coats? I think it came out looking more red than pink, because of the jelly base, but I'm not entirely sure yet. It's definitely a glitterbomb, and definitely seasonally-appropriate, I'm just not sure it's something I'd want to wear any other day of the year.

Added: Here's a picture. In most lights it looks redder than this, though.
Also, since I'm adding things, I just noticed that Serum No 5 has a sale on everything pink, red, black, and white this weekend - so that would include Poppy Fields, presumably. It's announced on their Facebook page but says you don't need a coupon code.

(more under the jump)

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Merry & Posh

Here's today's nails (which were actually done two days ago, on top of a manicure that's now five days old):
This is Be Merry, Be Bright over Posh (excuse the somewhat lobstery hands, I think it's the fluorescents). I was attempting to do a glitter fade + all-over accent on the ring finger, but it was not my most successful attempt at that, every nail is a little different. But I doubt that anybody has looked close enough to notice. It's pretty and shiny and that's what counts. It looks much more pink than Posh alone looks. As usual, it's much prettier than you can tell from the picture.

I got called into work at the last minute, and I wasn't real happy about that generally, but especially because the sun was out for the first time in a week or so, and I could have taken pictures. Honestly, that was the first thing that occurred to me when I woke up, was, "Sun! Pictures!" And then I had to dash off to work instead. Hopefully the sun will not wait another week to come back.

I scored Cult Nails Fetish from the Llarowe restock. It's my very first Cult Nails, y'all. (As of the middle of the night when I am looking at this, there's still lots of stuff left, looks like - it was Cadillacquer, Cult, and Hare Polish that got restocked.) (oh my god, Wrapped in Plastic, it's a good thing I didn't notice that one earlier - and I will now pretend I didn't see it. I loved Twin Peaks.)

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Origin stories, part 2

Sally Hansen doesn't have a Wikipedia page, but what I dug out of their website was that they were founded in 1957 in New York. It doesn't say what Sally's background was, but that was when she and her chemist husband came up with the original Hard As Nails. Sally Hansen (the company) is now owned by Coty.

Interestingly, Zoya was also founded by a woman with a chemist husband, but somewhat more recently. (I knew that one because I had read an article somewhere about her.) Zoya and Michael Reyzis came to the U.S. in 1979, and Zoya, who had a background as a classical pianist, became a cosmetologist. At her request, Michael began to develop products that Zoya saw a need for in her salon, such as fast-drying topcoat and nontoxic polish.

OK, I've done four of these little mini-histories now (OPI and Revlon were the other two) and I'm starting to see a pattern. I suppose it's how many companies get started - you identify a need for a product and you know somebody or find somebody who can make you that product. Revlon started with a chemist with a new nail polish formula. OPI sold acrylics to salons and saw the need for a better adhesive. Sally Hansen, presumably, wanted something to improve weak nails, and Zoya Reyzis wanted a more natural nail polish. Of course that's not the whole trick, is it? Because then you have to do the work to make it a success. But having a good product that there's a market for gets you on the way, at least!


I didn't find a similar story so far for Sally Beauty, but here's their original store in New Orleans. (Their timeline becomes a somewhat less heartwarming tale of acquisition and expansion, after that. Reading histories of big retail companies is not something I generally find all that exciting, and that one is pretty typical.)

Added: Consumerist says Sally Hansen may not have existed. Which I guess might explain why you can't find much about her.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Matte Velvet

A not-so-great iPhone picture of Posh (with topcoat):
It''s not actually a terrible picture, but Posh-with-topcoat is utterly gorgeous and this fails to capture anything unusual about it - except that it didn't chip immediately, which actually in my experience of bright reds is pretty extraordinary in itself! I put it on Friday night and this picture was taken Saturday at lunchtime; right now as I write this it's Monday night and it has some very minor chips but it still looks pretty good. I used Zoya's own basecoat, Get Even, but I don't own any Zoya topcoat so I used Butter London PDQ. And it is shiny and gorgeous, with a depth to it which is what makes it really extraordinary. I almost didn't put topcoat on it, because it's pretty without. But I'm glad I did.

So since it was only a little bit chipped, I decided to patch it up and put some glitter on top of it. I used Be Merry, Be Bright, which I believe I said the last time I put it on seemed more like a Valentine's Day polish than a Christmas one. And it looks really pretty over Posh. I'll try to get a picture later.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Nail wheel - black, white, gray

Blacks, grays, and a couple of whites:
  1. Bad Chick (Sinful Colors Nail Art, which is why I painted it in stripes)
  2. unnamed white creme (Color Theory set)
  3. -
  4. Wet Cement (Sally Hansen Xtreme)
  5. -
  6. Gray By Gray (Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure)
  7. -
  8. Is That Silva? (OPI magnetic)
  9. The Symbiote (Chirality holo)
  10. unnamed gray creme (Color Theory set)
  11. Steely Gaze (Hard as Nails)
  12. Gray's Anatomy (Wet n Wild/Fast Dry)
  13. Slick Black (Sally Hansen Triple Shine)
  14. Starry Night (Sonia Kashuk)
  15. Black Illusion (L.A. Girl holo)
  16. Jet Black (Hard as Nails)
  17. Black Creme (Wet n Wild/Wild Shine )
  18. unnamed black creme (Color Theory set)
  19. Vibe (old Hard Candy mini)
I've added a couple of things in the blank spaces since this picture was taken, so eventually I need to go back and take more pictures of the top side of this wheel, where it was incomplete!

One thing I noticed is that almost everything on this wheel is drugstore polish. I think I just don't think it's worth spending money on higher-end for blacks, and I barely buy whites at all. I just haven't gotten around to it with grays, I think, because I do actually like grays. It might be worth noting also that Sally Hansen makes some great grays, which is why there's a lot of those here.

It's barely worth posting the whites, but here you go:

At least you can see the striper. The other one is barely visible at all. (Note that #3 is blank - you can tell the difference between 2 & 3, but just barely.)

I don't seem to have gotten a picture of 4, but as I said, I'm going to have to take new pictures of that part of the wheel anyway. (6) is Gray by Gray, which is a dark gray with an almost-indigo tinge to it.
(8) is Is That Silva? which is the Bond magnetic - I didn't try to use the magnet on this. It's pretty on its own, anyway. (There's a picture of it where I did use the magnet here.) (9) is the Chirality holo - you can see the holo effect in both these pictures, above and below).
(10) is another of those unnamed/probably L.A. Colors polishes - I've never remembered to look & see if there's an L.A. Colors that matches this. It's quite pretty, actually. It's most similar to (12) which doesn't show up well in either of these pictures. (These must be older pictures - later on I got a rhythm of taking 1-4, 5-8 and so on. Or maybe all those blank spaces threw me off.)

(13) is apparently Slick Black, which you notice is not very black at all without a base coat under it. (14) is Starry Night, which is black with little sparkles; (15) is the L.A. Girl holo.
 (16) is what Jet Black looks like with just one coat. I used it a lot in these wheels and it gets pretty opaque, but it takes a good three coats to get there. (Compare with the WnW next to it, although I can't swear that's one coat, because I don't have consistent notes on this wheel on that.)
(18) is another unnamed - I'm not sure if it has a little sparkle in it or if that's just dust - I'm going to have to go inspect this wheel later and see if I can tell! - Possibly it's dust, actually, because (19) is Vibe, which I'm pretty sure is a straight-up black creme. I'll report back if I figure out anything different.

And yay, that is the end of my original set of wheels. From here on out it's all things that I've added since last September, but that's several more wheels worth by now!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Guide to my nail wheels

I've been posting nail wheels off and on for months, and it's gotten so I can't even remember what I have and haven't posted, and when. I started this last September, so it's taken me nearly six months to get pictures of the original set of nail wheels online. (In fact, you can tell now that I've got dates on it that I started with a flurry in September, and then have gradually slowed down with getting the rest of them up, after that.)

Note: I have posted more since this was originally done; I have updated the list and links to reflect that and will continue to do so. Further updates will be on the nail wheels and stash page. Also I did not take close-up "detail" pictures until I got further down the wheel, and I like those for comparison purposes so I'll probably go back and take more of those when I get a chance. The second half is mostly missing bottle shots like the early ones have, but I probably will not re-do those specifically in connection with the wheels. (You will be seeing my stash color by color again at some point, I'm pretty confident of that.)
  1. green (Sept 8) (detail pics needed)
  2. blue-green (Sept 12) (detail needed)
  3. metallics and multicolor glitters (Sept 16) (detail needed)
  4. cyan/blue/blue-violet (Sept 17) (detail needed)
  5. neutral(ish) purples (Sept 19) (detail needed)
  6. purple to red-violet (Sept 29) (detail needed)
  7. red-violet to pink (Oct 5) (detail needed)
  8. bright pinks (Oct 13) (detail needed) 
  9. reds (Nov 3) (full wheel - Feb 21) (but detail still needed)
  10. purchases since Sept (2 parts: Jan 13 and Feb 24)
  11. fall colors - orange/copper/brown (Nov 18) (detail needed) 
  12. lighter pinks, brownish pinks (2 parts: Dec 29 and Jan 11)
  13. fuchsia to burgundy + Take 10 (Jan 12) (detail needed) 
  14. white, gray, black (Feb 10) (updated Feb 21)
  15. glitter/shimmer over black (Feb 3)
  16. China Glaze Happy HoliGlaze collection (Jan 22)
  17. Take Ten + new purchases (Mar 4)
  18. Jan 2014 purchases (Mar 6)
  19. colors for Valentine's Day (mostly pinks) (Jan 31)
  20. Jan-Feb 2014 adds and manicures (coming soon)
There are still some that have never been posted at all, or never posted in their entirety. (And I'm still doing new ones as I buy new stuff!)

Hopefully this post will give me a guide for what I have and haven't posted. Also, some are still waiting for the next sunny day so I can take more pictures. And not all of them are entirely full, still.

Hmm, so actually the one scheduled for Monday (black, white, gray) is the last of the original round of swatches - everything left after that is what I've bought since then. So on the whole, not as bad as I feared.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Not in the winter mood

I went to Big Lots to see what they had in the way of Sephora by OPIs, since everybody keeps going on about what they're finding there. I gotta say that $1.80 is a fabulous price for a polish that used to be $9 - what is that, 80% off? However, I pawed through the bins and they didn't have anything that I really had to have, so instead I bought two Colorstay colors that were marked down a mere 70% or so (they were $1.50). The two Colorstays were Rich Raspberry and Fall Mood - like I really need another berry-color or another tarnished gold (which appears to be what Fall Mood is), but oh well. Maybe I will keep making periodic runs though Big Lots' makeup aisle now that it's on my radar. (I tend to avoid Big Lots because the first couple of times I went in there I spent, like, two hours in there each time and spent lots of money. But I think I'm over that now.) It's conveniently on my way home from work, so there's that. But next I actually want to go to Sally Beauty and look at the Finger Paint BOGO sale.

Oh, I almost forgot to say that I wasn't done when I got out of Big Lots, either - I had to go in the grocery store to pick up a prescription, and when I cruised down the nail polish aisle, I noticed they had Rimmel Lasting Finish marked down. Their Rimmel is stuck down on the very bottom in a corner of the aisle ("corner" as in backing up to the endcap) and so I've never bothered to get down there and look at all the colors. If they're being discontinued, I may have to go on a quest, because I have it in my head that I want Lava Red, and I never have found it up to now. I did get down in the corner and look, and I did not find Lava Red, but I did come home with Rags to Riches, which is a nice shimmery sort of dollar-bill green. I'm guessing that's what they were going for, anyway, from the name.

Also - Purple Poodle over Domestic Goddess? Gorgeous. I did three coats of Purple Poodle, finally, and you still can't see much of the purple shimmer that I know is down there, but it has a lot of shine and a lot of depth, and it's just really pretty. You might can see the purple in full sun, but I still don't know about that because we are in full Texas-winter mode, what my mama would've called a "blue norther" - and the sun has not been seen today. (And there was a cold damp wind, and it was a pretty miserable day, generally.)

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Bottle size, stash pics, & NOTD

I've got a spreadsheet going with polish brands and prices and how big the bottles are, because as I think I've said previously, I've gotten sort of interested in the question of bottle size and how easy it is to buy something without realizing how much is actually in that bottle. My spreadsheet is not anything resembling complete to my satisfaction yet, but I will tell you the current winner on the price per ounce front: Terrybly aka La Laque by Terry, which is $30 for a 10ml bottle. If my math is correct that comes out to $88 and change per ounce. (Google tells me that there are 29.57 ml per ounce, so 10 ml is slightly less than .3 ounce.) Somebody who owns some Chanel nail polish can tell me if I'm wrong, because I haven't found a definite answer on any website selling Chanel so far (including Chanel's own) about how big their bottles are - but I believe they are in the 0.5 oz/15ml range, right? Making them a considerably better buy (on a per-ounce basis) at $27 a bottle. But I noticed that other Terrybly makeup is equally expensive so I guess they are just the very high end of high-end. (So far.)

Today's mani started out to be Orly Purple Poodle by itself, but it's so sheer it was bothering me, even after a couple of coats, so I started over and used SOPI Domestic Goddess as a base. I think it made it slightly pinker than it would've been by itself, but it's not a huge difference. The "purple" part of Purple Poodle seems to be the purple specks in it, not the base itself. But I haven't gotten a good look at it in the sunlight yet, so I'll report back. I do have to say that all this talk about bottle size makes me appreciate Orly's generous .6 oz bottles! (I've never managed to use up a bottle of anything Orly, so far.)

Just because I realized I've never put these up, this is what my stash looked like before I started the big reorganization project a month or so ago:

(Non-nail-polish-related story: the comforter on the bed is about 5 years old; it came in quite a few colors, and I let my husband pick out a color, since I had already picked the pattern. Predictably, he said brown. I've always sort of wished I'd gotten green, but actually I would probably be just as tired of looking at it if it was green. Really, it's not bad. You get tired of looking at anything after seeing it every day for 5 years.)

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Another scented polish, and recent manis

Here's a new-to-me brand, seen in a Walgreen's that I don't normally go in - Tea Beauty? Another scented polish - apparently made by a fragrance company, so that part makes sense.
None of these colors grabbed me enough that I was willing to pay $4.99 to try them out. Hopefully they will be around again with a better color selection! I was iffy on the scented-polish idea, in general - originally I thought it sounded like a horrible idea, but I have gradually tried a few and found that the scent is actually pretty subtle on the ones I've tried, so I've now grown more accustomed to the concept. It's not really a draw, to me, though, I admit - I doubt that I'm ever going to buy a polish just because it's scented.

Let's see, in recent manis... when last heard from on this subject, I think I was wearing Blood of the Mountain. (I remain not entirely in love with that polish. I've loved every other Pahlish I've had, so it's certainly nothing against them!) Over the weekend, I decided I would go red-violet and I did Sinful Colors Fig with a topping of Sugar Plum Fairies Gone Wild, which turned out to work really well. Unfortunately I didn't get a picture of it, because it was cloudy all weekend and I never got decent light to take anything. (I have decided I'm going to start swatching my layering experiments onto a nail wheel at the same time as I do my nails, since I'm always having some problem or other taking mani pictures. If I have the manicure duplicated on a wheel, I can take a picture at my leisure. Also I just bought another 10 nail wheels so I have plenty of wheel space to spare!)

I do have a picture of the current one, although it's not a great picture even by my standards, blurry and totally deceptive:
This is It's Genius, a raisin-y Essie color that I like enough that I was almost tempted to leave alone, but instead I put Travel in Colour over it. Travel in Colour makes everything look pink (or at least pinker), I've said it before and I haven't changed my mind about that. This looks very red-violet in this picture, but trust me, that's the fluorescents. It's much more fuchsia than it appears here. And it's actually very pretty and shimmery, and I like it. However, the picture itself pisses me off because it's so useless. It looks like some red-violet like Domestic Goddess, maybe, and it's not - and I'm tempted to take it out of the post because of that, but I probably won't. Just bear in mind that this is NOT what this manicure actually looks like!!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Stash - Orly, Ulta, Julie G, & more

Here's my little stash of Orlys. Let's see, the four minis came as a set: Razzmatazz, Hot Stuff, Tiara, and Groupie. The other bottle on the top is the same as one of the ones below: Pearl Wisdom. I have two of those - it was my go-to favorite topper back a couple of years ago. Bottom row is Bonder upside down, and then Sweet Peacock, Diamond Love, Pearl Wisdom, Glitz, R.I.P. (from the 2012 Halloween collection), Rage, Flagstone Rush, and Retro Red. Notice that these are all in the old bottles; the two new ones that I bought this past month aren't in the picture.

Then we have some assorted stuff (bad picture but it seems to be the only one I have):

Top left: Sation Holiday Spirit, and below that, Finger Paint Hypnotic, a magnetic (I only own the one from each of those brands); then going across from there are my Julie G's, all from the Gumdrops (texture) collection: Rock Candy, Blueberry Fizz, Crushed Candy, Hot Cinnamon, and Sugar Rush. The mini at the top left is an old Sephora store brand polish, predating S-OPIs, I believe. It's just called No.08. And then I think the Studio M and the two Color Clubs below it were also in a different picture, so they've already been discussed. The Ultas along the bottom are Chic Peek, Celebutante, and then 5 minis that came out of a "Wicked Wonderland" holiday collection from a number of years ago: Twisted Tinsel, N-evergreen, Empty Stocking, Bad Santa, and Tilted Halo. I tend to forget to wear these, but they're all very nice colors - nice enough that every time I remember their existence I say, "Why don't I ever wear these?" Tilted Halo in particular is unlike anything else I own - it looks gold but it's got a champagne tint to it that nothing else has. (And Bad Santa is just a great name.)

I'm hoping for a sunny day soon so I can photograph the brands I have left and get on to the next phase of this, but this time of year we don't have that many sunny days, even on the Gulf Coast. I'm trying to be zen about it: it'll happen eventually, right?

Monday, February 3, 2014

Black-based nail wheel

This whole wheel is over 3 coats of Hard As Nails Jet Black:
  1. Diamond Love (Orly) (2 coats)
  2. Groupie (Orly) (2 coats)
  3. Disco Ball (Xtreme Wear) (1 coat)
  4. Fairy Dust (e.l.f.) (1 coat)
  5. Fairy Dust (Khroma) (1 coat)
  6. Tilted Halo (Ulta)  (1 coat)
  7. Pearl Wisdom (Orly) (1 coat)
  8. Let Me Go (Sinful) (2 coats)
  9. Mist You (SH Salon)
  10. Jailbait (old Hard Candy) (1 coat)
  11. Gray's Anatomy (WnW)
  12. unnamed very pale pink shimmer
  13. unnamed slightly less pale pink glitter
  14. Slick Black (Color Show)
  15. Big City Dazzle (NYC)
  16. Strobe Light (Xtreme Wear)
  17. Two-Timer Stars (Maybelline)
  18. Amethyst Couture (Color Show Brocades)
  19. Jewel Tone (L.A. Colors)
  20. Jet Black alone (Hard As Nails) (3 coats)
(detail shots under the jump)

Saturday, February 1, 2014

I'm taking a day off.

January is over, and I posted EVERY SINGLE DAY for the whole month. I didn't actually set out to do this - actually I wouldn't have imagined that I would ever do such a thing. But I took a ton of pictures way back at the beginning of the month, when I started the stash reorganizing, and after the whole month, I still haven't run out of pictures. I am going to slow down some in February - at least, I am definitely taking tomorrow off - but I still have stash pictures and nail wheels to catch up on, and so I will probably keep posting more often than I did in 2013, for a while. We'll see how that goes.

I'm totally behind on reading other people's blogs, but I've been working on it and here's some linkage:
I didn't see this until today, but Zoya has already done a Valentine's nail wheel of their own
More pink - in fact, the pinkest of the pink!
Pretty Dior pinks for spring
Here's a V-Day collection that's only 1/3 pink
and lips!!
(ok, I'll stop with the pink...)

Here's some people having giveaways, instead:
Gnarly Gnails (also, look at her stash!)
Things I Love at the Moment

Non-pink, non-giveaway links:
LynB's QI collection - part 1 and part 2
cute chevron mani done with textures
I've never heard of a brand called Jacava, but wow, this is pretty

Here's one of the nail wheels I haven't shown before - everything in this one is over a black base.
More on that sometime this month!

OK, that's all I got. Happy weekend!!